The session limit for the forum is set for 30 minutes and if a post takes longer than that then it’s usually a good idea to save it before clicking submit. I’ve been caught on this as well several times (on other forums as well) after writing a long post and I know how frustrating it can be!
Yes … without the specs of the mattress … it doesn’t really say much because names like “extra firm” or “euro top plush bliss” really have no meaning.
[quote]The other store had a variety of “latex” beds…a couple sterns and foster combos and a line of Jamison.
I liked the Jamison Opulence but i think it was a little too firm in the shoulder area…just slightly but this pressure may become exaggerated after sleeping for 6 to 8 hours.[/quote]
Stearns and Foster have several models that have “latex” in the name but as often as not they just have some layers of “unknown” lower quality mostly synthetic dunlop latex in them (usually “smart latex”) and they also have lots of polyfoam in the mix … most often above the latex layers so you are really lying more on polyfoam than on latex.
The Jamison’s on the other hand have layering that is known because they show the construction on the site. In the case of the Opulence … it is two x 2" layers of 19 ILD Talalay over a 6" layer of 40 ILD Talalay over a 2" firm polyfoam base layer. It also has a stretch knit unquilted ticking. This would be a very soft comfort layer over a very firm support core.
This would normally be close to “on the soft side” for someone of your height and weight who was a pure side sleeper (and I couldn’t find your sleeping positions) and it would be unusual that this wouldn’t provide adequate pressure relief for your shoulders. If you are a combination sleeper and spend time on your back then the comfort layers would likely be too soft/thick. If you spend time on your stomach then they would almost certainly be too soft/thick. Your own testing is of course always the deciding factor over “theory” though.
33 6 inch talalay core
19 3 inch talalay
3/4 wool bamboo cover
This would be a little firmer in the comfort layer (3" vs 4" and a wool quilted ticking vs a stretch knit). This would be offset a little bit with the lower ILD support core which would “add” to the comfort layers a little more than a 40 ILD core.
40 6 inch talalay core
22-25 4 inches of talalay
11 1 inch of talalay
This would also be “similar” to the Jamison but uses a slightly thicker comfort layer … most of which is firmer than the Jamison but with the top inch being softer for a slightly softer surface feel. I don’t know what the ticking is for this but if it’s wool then that would also act to firm up the mattress and add to the cost/value as well. If this was the same price as the Jamison it would represent better value because the materials used in it would be more expensive (more latex and also a layer of wool which is an expensive material). I’m somewhat surprised that the top inch is an inch of talalay in 11 ILD because I didn’t know that this existed. It may be a layer of softer polyfoam used to create a softer surface feel.
I agree with Tim (not surprisingly since he would know his own mattresses better than anyone) that his regular two sided mattresses would be much different in feel from the Jamison and of course being two sided are also using more quilting/ticking materials which add to the value (and cost) of the mattress so even though the mattress may use a similar amount of materials in it … the extra cost and benefits of finishing a mattress on two sides would make the two sided mattress a better value based on the cost of materials.
Overall … both of these would have similarities to the Jamison you tried but all three would be different from each other and use different approaches to “approximate” what you’ve tried and to accommodate your feedback. One uses a softer core and one uses a thicker comfort layer to gain some extra softness on top.
In cases like this when you are ordering online and you are looking at “approximate” equivalents rather than layering that is closer to what you have tried … knowing what your options are if either is not quite right would be an important part of the “value equation” for me.
A “pillowtop” feel is a term that really doesn’t have much specific meaning because how a pillowtop feels would depend entirely on the materials that are in the pillowtop and below it. In other words … it is a more a method of construction rather than an indication of softness or firmness by itself even though in most cases it is used subjectively to mean softer. A pillowtop with firm foam will feel firm while one with soft foam will feel soft. A pillowtop style of construction will feel a little softer than an equivalent mattress that used the same layering without a pillowtop and would be in between a smooth top and a separate topper in terms of feel if all the layers were using the same materials and the same ILD and were covered with similar fabric.
I think though that most people use “pillowtop” to mean the feeling of thicker than average comfort layers using softer than average foam (usually polyfoam in lower ILD’s) but being specific more than this would depend on knowing the layering of a mattress that created this feeling for you because there are just too many different types of pillowtop “feels” to know for sure.
An inch of softer foam in a mattress wouldn’t create this feel though because this is used for hand feel or surface feel rather than being used to create a “pillowtop feel”.
While none of the mattresses you are considering would be a pillowtop … probably the closest to that type of “feel” would be the Jamison which uses thicker layers of softer foam on top. The MyGreenMattress also uses thicker layers but the ILD of the comfort layers is firmer than the Jamison so it would be less of a “pillowtop” feel. The mattresses.net would be the furthest away from this type of feel because the comfort layers are the thinnest of all.
My personal feeling is that I would put a premium on buying a mattress that I had tried in person over the unknowns of buying a mattress online that had a different construction and would feel different. Duplicating the feel of a mattress that doesn’t use the exact same layering is an “art” much more than a science and has as much to do with the perceptions and weight and shape of the person as it does the mattress. When this cost premium becomes too large or say more than about 20% (using similar layer thicknesses and materials because of course using wool in one and not another or using more latex in one than another is also more expensive and thinner latex mattresses will be less than thicker ones) … then I would consider an online purchase with the extra risk and possible extra cost of layer or mattress exchanges if your “guess” wasn’t quite right.
There is information here about the differences between 100% natural talalay and blended talalay and post #2 here also has more information. The biggest reason that 100% natural talalay was introduced was to cater to the green and “natural” community rather than to introduce a more durable product. The manufacturers warranty on 100% natural talalay is 10 years and on the blend is 20 years.
Overall … I would be very careful about going with a comfort layer that was that thick and soft if you are coming from a much firmer futon. I would check again to confirm that the Jamison really was too firm and that you weren’t just perceiving “sensory confusion” from lying on several mattresses close to each other (where everything begins to feel the same or you lose your sense of how each one differs). The goal is to make sure you have good support and then add “just enough” on top of this to provide pressure relief. With 19 ILD talalay, 3" may not be enough to isolate you from the firmness of a 40 ILD core and you may need a thicker layer (which the Jamison had) while with a slightly firmer 24 ILD comfort layer … 3" may be enough although the layer itself may also be firmer (although still considered soft) than you prefer.
In the end … it may help if you found more than one “prototype” with known layering that was close to what you prefer (or you could clearly define how each was less than ideal) to help make an online purchase more accurate if you do decide to go in this direction.