Mattress vents and shoddy pads.

Sorry for the two questions but……I’m interested in ordering a mattress that has no toxicity because of my health issues. I’m currently discussing a possible build order with a manufacturer. The mattress will contain wool and cotton. They tell me they use a shoddy pad over the spring unit and do not use vents. Should I be concerned? What I’d really love is something as close to a Royal Pedic Premier or The Bristol by CH Beckley without the crazy price tag. Any ideas.

Hi Btrbck,

It’s not something that I would personally be concerned about but it would depend on the specifics of how the shoddy pad was manufactured and how you feel about the materials inside it (usually textile clippings) or the resin that was used to bond them (see post #2 here. The manufacturer you are working with would be a better source of information about the specifics of the shoddy pads they are using than I would.

There is more information in post #2 here and the more detailed posts and information it links to about safe, natural, organic, “chemical free”, and “green” mattresses and mattress materials that can help you sort through some of the marketing information and terminology that you will encounter in the industry and can help you differentiate between them and answer “how natural is natural enough for me” or “how safe is safe enough for me” so you can make more “fact based” choices on the types of materials you are most comfortable having in your mattress. These types of issues can be complex and are generally specific to each person and their individual sensitivities, circumstances, criteria, beliefs, and lifestyle choices.

There is more about the different ways that one mattress can “match” or “approximate” another mattress in post #9 here but unless all the materials and layers in two mattresses are the same the only way to know how they will compare in terms of how they “feel” or PPP (Posture and alignment, Pressure relief, and Personal preferences) will be based on your own careful testing or personal experience.

Making durability comparisons is a little bit less subjective because in terms of durability a mattress is only as good as the type and quality of the materials inside it (regardless of the name of the manufacturer on the label) and would involve comparing the quality and durability of the materials and components in each of the mattresses you are considering to make sure that they don’t use any lower quality materials or have any weak links in their design (see this article and the quality/durability guidelines it links to).

There is also more about the most important parts of the “value” of a mattress purchase in post #13 here that can help you make more meaningful comparisons between mattresses in terms of comfort and PPP (Posture and alignment, Pressure relief, and Personal preferences), quality/durability and the useful life of a mattress, and all the other parts of your personal value equation that are most important to you (including the price and the options you have after a purchase if the mattress needs any additional “fine tuning” after your purchase).