Need help with selecting latex mattress

Hi Phoenix,

Thank you for providing all your insights to mattress selection. I’ve been reading various topics on this forum and it has been very informative.

I am currently looking for a new mattress to replace the old one that has worn out. I’ve tried foam, spring and latex, and I do believe that I feel more comfortable and relaxed on a latex mattress. I do have a few questions and I am wondering if you or anyone else on this forum can help me out:

I am located in the Bay Area, CA, and I’ve visited the Natural Mattress Store here. They make mattresses with natural latex and the beds feel fairly comfortable. I like the fact that they are local. Also, I can’t seem to find many natural latex mattress stores around the area. I generally like firmer mattresses but felt that the company’s Awareness mattress soft or medium were pretty good. I also liked their Enlightenment mattress which was comfortable to sleep on the side, but it’s the softest mattress and very expensive.

I am not sure how good the value of the mattresses are at the Natural Mattress store given that the online stores such as SleepEZ and Flexus mattress seems to offer similar mattresses but at a lower price. I am more hesitant to buy a mattress online since I can’t try it out in advance and return/exchanges cost $$ and time. Any advice you have on either the value of the mattresses from Natural Mattress store compared to other online ones would be super helpful! I am also wondering if you know of any similar latex mattress stores or resellers in the bay area? I’d prefer to go to a store to try the mattresses personally if possible.

I also have some questions about latex mattresses generally:

  1. is there much of a difference between having 2 layer of latex vs. 3?
  2. Is there a desired thickness of the latex per layer?
  3. How does the firmness and feel of the mattress change if I switch some layers (e.g. for a 3 layer mattress, soft/medium/firm vs. medium/soft/firm vs. soft/firm/firm)?

Also, along with the mattress, I am considering to get an adjustable base. Do you know how the Leggitt & Platt compare to Ergomotion (e.g. Ergomotion 400)?


Hi wolfie,

The first place I would start is post #1 here which includes the information, steps, and guidelines you will need to make the best possible choices.

You have some very good choices in the San Francisco Bay area and they are listed in post #2 here.

In a word … Yes. It would also depend on many variables including body type, sleeping position, and individual preferences but if everything else is equal … layer thickness can make as big a difference in PPP (Pressure relief, posture and alignment, and Personal preferences) as anything else including layer softness. You can read more about the potential benefits of thicker layers in post #14 here and about the potential benefits of having more layers in post #2 here. All of this is relative to each person though and there is no absolute answer to these types of questions where “it depends” is the most important part of any answer.

No. The only goal of any “design theory” is that a mattress provides you with your needs and preferences. How it does so (outside of making sure the material quality is good and durable) is much less important.

Some reading of the overviews that are mentioned in the first post I linked and the other links should answer this but every layer will affect every other layer both in terms of pressure relief and in terms of support alignment. A firmer transition layer in the example you gave will reduce the amount or “cradling” in the mattress which can reduce pressure relief and will also increase the support (which means that your heavier areas will be 'stopped" from sinking in sooner) which may improve alignment for some people. Overall though … the results of your personal testing are much more important than the “theory” behind the mattress design. Everything boils down to PPP in the end and the design that produces it is less important than making sure that the mattress is the most suitable design for yu regardless of how suitable it may be for someone else with a different body type, sleeping style, preferences, or sensitivities.

The adjustable bed thread here may be helpful to make comparisons between then and provide you with some reference pricing.