novice latex buyer

I decided to start a new thread since my previous one “Sleep Science 9” King Latex GL on sale at Costco" is no longer relevent. After just a week on your site I am no longer considering this type of mass produced mattress. Thank you by the way for all of your help in educating myself…although I’m still a big novice.
I now understand that firm and soft are subjective. I do believe though that latex has a feel that is unique to most people who have never experienced it before. I don’t think many people would describe it as hard or even firm in most cases. It provides excellent pressure relief and support but the sensation is somewhat spongy at first. My question is what would be the downside of buying a latex firmness level that is firmer than what is recommended for your body weight? It seems like even the firmer levels still would have excellent pressure relief. Would buying a firmer level maybe avoid the adjustment peroid from the firmer mattresses that we are accustomed to? I’m very comfortable that Ken and Arizona Premium Mattress will build a great quality mattress at a great price. I’m still just unsure of which one to order. They even have latex over individually coiled springs…although I don’t really think I can tell what the core layer is made out of by feel. Perhaps that becomes more obvious after you sleep on it for a few nights or weeks. The question of which kind of core layer to use seems to be more about personal preference and durability, is that correct?

Hi domtiger,

As you mentioned firmness and softness is very subjective and relative to the body type, sleeping positions, and sensitivities and preferences of each person. There are also different types of softness and firmness that different people are more or less sensitive to (see post #15 here). While different people describe the sensation or feel of sleeping on latex in many different ways … it’s probably fair to say that “on average” there are more people who aren’t familiar with the feel and performance of latex that would describe it as being firmer than they expected than softer than they expected.

The down side of buying any mattress that is too firm (latex or otherwise) would be that it’s not a good match for you in terms of PPP in which case you won’t sleep well on it either because of pressure issues or because of alignment issues and how well you sleep on a mattress is the most important part of the “value” of a mattress purchase (see post #13 here). Of course it’s easier to “fix” a mattress that is too firm by adding a softer topper than it is to “fix” a mattress that is too soft (which generally requires removing and replacing the layers that are too soft rather than adding to them) but choosing a topper that is a good match for you in terms of PPP on a specific mattress can be somewhat challenging when you can’t test a mattress/topper combination in person and can add another level of uncertainty and risk to your choices (see post #2 here). Of course with a component mattress that allows for a layer exchange you can generally make a mattress either firmer or softer in various ways but the goal is always to make the choice that has the best chance of success and I would avoid purposely choosing a mattress that is either firmer or softer than your ideal.

There is more about the different ways to choose a mattress (either locally or online) that can help you identify and minimize the risks involved with each of them in post #2 here.

The type of materials and components in a mattress are primarily a preference choice and not as much a “better/worse” choice. The comfort layers of a mattress are generally the weakest link of a mattress in terms of durability not the support core so these are the layers where higher quality and more durable materials are the most important although there are some cases where the durability of the deeper layers can become a more important factor such as with heavier body types or thinner comfort layers where the support core will be compressed more deeply and be more subject to the compression forces that soften or break down a material or component when you sleep on the mattress. There is more about the many variables that can affect the durability and useful life of a mattress relative to different people in post #4 here.


After returning to Arizona Premium Mattress with my wife, we purchased a firm core latex king mattress with a soft latex topper. Should have delivery in 2-3 weeks and I will give further feedback then. I feel really good about the purchase after the info you and your site provided. Also, Ken was extremely helpful in narrowing down all the options.

Hi domtiger,

Thanks for letting us know what you ended up deciding.

You certainly made a great quality/value choice and as you know I think very highly of Arizona Premium Mattress.

Congratulations on your new mattress :slight_smile:

I’m looking forward to your comments and feedback when you receive it.