Serta Icomfort vs Sealy Memoryworks

As always thank you very much for the information im going to go to the original mattress factory today and try out their latex and memory foam bed with my fiance. all the insight is much appreciated.

Hi Immortal216,

When you are at OMF, I would suggest you try their latex mattresses on a firm foundation (such as their adjustable bed) not just on the “active” box springs as it can make a difference in how they feel.

Their new memory foam model is also well worth testing. It uses higher quality materials (in both the comfort layers and the support core) than the iComfort and has much better value.

I’m not sure what city you are in but there may also be other factory direct manufacturers with some very good options for you to try and like OMF they typically have very good quality and value.


I am in Cleveland, Ohio

Hi Immortal216,

I think post #2 here may help you a bit (although you’ve already discovered OMF) :slight_smile:

Once you’ve tested the mattresses at OMF, then a couple of phone calls asking if the others have anything which is similar to any mattress you liked at OMF (who will give you the exact specs of their mattresses) will help you decide if the two that are further away are worth the drive. Just make sure that you ask the most important question … “Can you tell me the specifics of each layer in the mattress?” and “how much is it in ___ size?” so that you can make sure that what you are considering doesn’t include layers that aren’t disclosed and that the value is in a comparable range. If you actually go there and you want to know for certain that there is no unknown polyfoam in a mattress you are considering, then looking at the law tag will also tell you whether there are any polyfoam layers (listed by percentage weight not thickness or the order of the layering) that you may not be told about.

Hope this helps


Can you recommend any manufacturers in the Atlanta area? I find myself comparing different brands from Sams, Costco, te Macys/Memoryworks but many of the “brands” I cannot find a place to go lie on one.

Hi wave,

The most important part of mattress shopping is to pay little attention to brands and to look at the materials in every mattress you are considering. Most of the brands you are considering don’t list the type and quality of the materials in their mattress and without this … you can end up buying a “cheap” mattress that can end up being very expensive.

Most of these online outlets have little knowledge or the materials in their mattresses which means that what they don’t know … you will need to know which involves a lot more research to avoid a mattress that “sounds good” but can easily end up being a poor choice because of low quality materials that won’t last.

There is a list of guidelines here that can help you avoid most of the traps and pitfalls of mattress shopping and will help you put your energy into outlets (mostly factory direct manufacturers or smaller outlets that carry alternative or local brands) that have the skills and knowledge to help you make the best selection at better prices that are usually available at the larger outlets that sell major brands with “unknown” materials inside them.

Online shopping can be great if there is not a lot of local quality and value available but only if you can find out the exact construction of the mattress you are looking at and the outlet has a good refund policy or exchange policy to make up for any mistakes. Either they or you also need to have the knowledge and skills to know exactly what type of mattress would best fit your needs and preferences.

You have some very good choices available to you and it’s unlikely that online shopping would be your best option though. Post #2 here includes some of the better choices in the Atlanta area.

Hope this helps.


Thanks for the quick response! My wife and I sleep on an 8" Tempurpedic (back from the days of only being 2 options - the 8" & 10"). We love the mattress yet have no idea what is in it regardless of all the searching. The mattress we are searching for is for a full size for our 3 year old daughter who is transitioning from a crib converted bed.

I have read extensively on this and other sites regarding the types of beds, the materials used etc and although I know this isn’t quite your cup of tea, we’ve decided up to now that we like the feel of the memory foam and tend to like to like the mattresses with a 3lb or 4lb layer - we found the 5lb a bit rigid and given it’s for a child and occasional adult, we’re not sure its necessary. Do you have any particular thoughts on the specs/quality of a mattress for a younger one who will likely not exceed 120lbs until after 18? (given family history)…

What I’ve struggled with is that certain brands (i.e. the Memoryworks @ Macys) are poor quality and clearly overpriced. We’ve looked into Ikea in detail with the help of your post and a detailed report at another mattress site and have ruled them out. While I had hoped to like the latex, it just seemed too firm but that seems very specific to the mattress @ ikea. I have had trouble finding latex affordable but am looking.

We had narrowed into Aerus/Foamex (Sams Club/Amazon), Night Therapy (Sams), Novaform (Costco/Amazon), and Spa Sensations (Walmart). This may change as I look in more detail and particularly thanks for the reference to the atlanta mfg cos.

I clearly have more research to do but am trying to follow your process, gauge what we we like, and make a decision before my wife kills me. If you have any particular thoughts for sub $500 range, kids mattress, based on my wife liking the feel of the 8" memoryworks (yes I know…) mattress, I’d appreciate it. Otherwise I’m pursuing the path but may be forced into a decision soon before she kills me.

Thanks again for all the help!

Hi wave,

I personally would tend to avoid memory foam with a younger child whose immune system is still developing. This is because even though it may be regarded as “safe” for a child (if it meets the CertiPur or Oeko-Tex or other standards) … I still don’t believe it is a good idea to take the chance of exposing a child to the ingredients in all memory foams until they are much older (see post #2 here).

In addition to this … children spend more time on a mattress, have a much more flexible spine that is less curvy than an adult, and they need to be better supported than an adult by the surface layers. They also do better with more freedom of movement than even more responsive memory foam can provide. Finally … the microclimate of a memory foam mattress is not as breathable and temperature controlling as other more breathable materials and I believe that children need every advantage we can give them while they are sleeping, growing, and developing. This is in addition to any fire retardency materials that may be added to memory foam or a mattress.

So while I understand the desire to give a child a more soft and cushy mattress … it is not a good idea IMO to use memory foam until they are much older. I would focus on more natural materials that provide more of what she really needs, even over what she may prefer, and which has much less risk over the longer term. Kids often prefer things that are not their best choices … and I really would focus on healthier materials and construction.

In a full size mattress … I would suggest that if you possibly can that you consider a slightly higher budget that would make it possible to go with either a more natural material like a single 6" core of Dunlop latex with a wool quilted ticking or an innerspring with natural fibers or latex. If this is not possible … then at least a higher quality polyfoam mattress or polyfoam/innerspring mattress would be more suitable than memory foam (although the polyfoam still isn’t as healthy as more natural alternatives and comes with the risk of additives that wouldn’t be in more natural materials).

If you are OK with a twin size … then something like this may be ideal.

Products - IKEA is a little over your budget but would also make a good full size choice. Something like this may work as well but is also over your budget in full size.

Mattresses that are similar to these may be available from some of the manufacturers on the Atlanta list and even for a child’s bed they would be good sources to talk with over the phone.

Some polyfoam/latex hybrid choices that would be worth considering include …

A futon that used healthy materials would also be a good choice and post #2 here includes some good options that use the same materials as a “non futon” mattress except in thinner layers and may be worth considering.

Google searches on terms like “healthy child’s mattress” will bring up a lot of choices but it will take some research to find something that is both healthy and inside your budget range in a full size as higher quality materials like wool, cotton, and latex can be more expensive.

But the first place I would look is the local manufacturers on the list.

Hope this helps … and as I come across more options in your price range I will add them here.


This is an enormous help and you’ve changed my mind outright. We’ll be searching locally for a latex mattress and if unable to find one that meets the budget, we’ll revert to an innerspring. I expect we’ll simply expand the budget as needed - a full size mattress is necessary because we are inheriting a bedroom set so we save a bit there, we spend a bit more on the mattress. C’est la vie.

I had already looked at innerspring/poly combos at the original mattress factory (regional chain) and liked what I saw there but I will review the other local providers and find one that makes sense. Will report back on the experience, mattress feel, etc.

Thank you.

Hi Wave,

I’m happy to hear this … it’s a subject I feel fairly strongly about :slight_smile:

One of the advantages too of a good 6" latex core is that it is incredible durable and as a child get older and larger into adolescence and the teenage years … it is a great base for a topper to add any additional comfort as needed for a chaging body shape. A good innerspring with natural fibers has a similar benefit.

One more to add which is the Pure Echo collection made by one of our manufacturing members …


We just bought an IComfort and love it but it is brand new and wearout is a factor seeing as I watch tv in bed and sweat at night when I sleep. How does this compare to a Tempurepedic with respect to wearing out?

How long have you had the Tempurepedic and do you find there has been any degradation in the foam?

Hi ruthsm,

I believe that the tempurpedics would be more durable than the iComfort lineup which uses gel beads infused in their memory foam. There’s more about comparisons between the two in post #2 here.


Hey Phoenix,
I am 5’10" and 160 lbs. I sleep on my side and I have lower back pain while sleeping. I went to the showroom and laid on a few mattresses and I was looking for a medium firm bed. I came across the icomfort savant but that was way to plush and I didn’t like the feeling of sinking in. Next to it i found the genius which i found more accommodating to my body. Would you recommend this bed or the insight for my body specs. thanks!

Hi thatsdopefoo,

I personally wouldn’t recommend the iComfort line for anyone regardless of their stats. Some of their specs and my thoughts about them are in post #11 here.

This article may also help you to avoid most of the worst choices when you are mattress shopping.

When you are first starting to look for a mattress … it can be much more important to research and find better outlets (along the lines of this article) than to spend time initially looking for a mattress. This is because if you end up buying from a typical chain store or mass market outlet or looking at major brands … you won’t be able to find out the information you need to know whether your choices are good ones or make meaningful comparisons with other mattresses. At the better outlets or factory direct manufacturers most of your choices will be good value. At the ones that advertise the most … most of your choices will be lower quality and value … or worse yet you won’t even be able to find out what the quality really is.

If you let me know the city or zip where you live … I’d be happy to let you know about any of the better outlets I’m aware of in your area…


Hey Phoenix,
Thanks for your honest input. I live in Rancho Cucamonga, CA. 91739. I looked at the icomfort because of the new cool gel memory foam they were advertising as well. I have slept on other memory foam mattresses and they were too warm/hot for me. Do you recommend any other types of mattresses that are cool?

Hi thatsdopefoo,

There are many combinations of materials, components, and different types of foam that can help a mattress to sleep cooler. Some of the many “variables” that are part of a mattress or bedding that are involved in sleeping cool are in post #2 here.

For those who like the feel of memory foam over other faster response and cooler types of foam … some of the ways that memory foams are being made cooler are in post #6 here.

There are also 3 main cooling mechanisms that different cooling technologies rely on and they are mentioned in the last part of post #4 here. Most of the current advertising is promoting the cooling benefits of various gel materials … either phase change or thermal conductive … but of the three types of cooling methods … I believe that ventilation and microclimate/humidity control which allows the natural cooling processes of the body work more effectively are the most important.

All of this together means that temperature/humidity control and sleeping microclimate are the result of a combination of factors and that by using one or more of these either in the mattress itself or as an add on afterwards (mattress protector, bedding, or various types of mattress pads or toppers) most mattresses types can be made cool enough for most people.

There is a list of some of the better options in and around the Greater Los Angeles area in post #2 here which would also include the closest factory direct manufacturers to the Rancho Cucamonga area.


Just a comment I would have to say I disagree somewhat with, I think you should absolutely take into an account the name brands of the mattresses. Should it be the only thing no. Serta, Sealy, Tempurpedic, Simmons… they make good stuff, you dont get to be as big as they are without making a quality products. Sure they have different levels of products but again, a lot of never buy a nae brand and that just not the case. I compete against those guys and definately think I carry better product but I never put them down based upon name. I am sure I am going to get several loooooooonnnnnnggggg responses on this but just needed to state my opinion on an issue that keeps arising on these boards which kind of bugged me.

Also, original mattress factory (OMF) is a huge franchised company. They have great marketing and they make you feel like they are a one of a kind but in reality they are not they are just like MF, Sleepys, AM… a large corporatation. Does that effect there quality- no, do they have good products- sure, Are they a local small manufacturer- NO.

Hi joeyTOB,

Let me share a couple of things with you that you may not be aware of and that will bring some facts to bear on what you are saying here about OMF.

First of all … they are not a franchise … all their retail locations are company owned which is why their culture is more consistent from store to store.

Second … they are completely transparent about the materials they use in their mattresses. Their quality is provable and not a matter of blind faith. An example just happened today which will make my point. I phoned one of their locations today at random (in Raleigh, NC) to find out some information about the materials that are in their mattresses (foam densities). The person that answered took the immediate supportive position that what I was asking was indeed important and said he didn’t know the answer but would find out for me. Within 5 minutes he called me back and gave me the specs of many of the foams they use in their mattresses (more than I had asked for).

The specs he gave me were …

The 1" foam layers are 1.5 lb density and 11-18 ILD (I hadn’t asked for the ILD)

The 1/4" layer is 1.25 lb density and 40 ILD.

The thicker 3" layers in their pillowtops are 2.75 lb polyfoam (close to the highest used in the industry and true HR polyfoam).

In addition to this they use cotton in their mattresses to even out the foam response.

These are the specs of higher quality/value materials in their price ranges and if I was using them in my mattress I would be advertising it as well. In other words when they say they are using higher quality materials in their mattresses than anything used by major brands and that they have better value … they are speaking the truth and they will prove it to anyone who wants to know.

In addition to this … their president used to be the president of Sealy (Ohio mattress company) and broke away when they were about to be bought out through a leveraged buyout to start his own company that was dedicated to doing all the things that Sealy would clearly no longer be doing with the bean counters taking control of the company.

Their success is a result of a different philosophy that provides consumers with better materials and products at lower prices … not because they are doing the same things as so many of the major manufacturers. That they are rated so highly in consumer surveys (#1 in mattress manufacturing or “brand” among larger recognized companies and #2 in retail outlets) is the result of the company philosophy … not marketing stories that have no basis in fact.

So when you make generalizations or blanket statements like you are and they can’t be supported with factual information … is it really doing anyone any favors?

On the other hand … none of what I asked OMF today would have been available if I had called any of the “S” companies or Tempurpedic about the quality specs of their mattresses (although Tempurpedic is more transparent than the others). I would have had to jump through hoops and barrels and still ended up not knowing what was really in their mattresses. In these cases … the advertising has no real substance or completely transparent information behind it.

It may be true that they “make good stuff” but I would sure like to know how you define “good” and how you know this is true. Can you give me an example of a major brand mattress that you consider to be “good” and why and that you know the specs of every layer in their mattress? If I sleep on a mattress and I change the label that is on it … I don’t think that I or anyone would sleep any differently. A mattress is only as good as the materials in it no matter what the label on the mattress. If a company doesn’t disclose what is in their mattresses or uses lower quality materials … then no matter how they became so large or what they did in their past … the label now indicates a company that has a pattern of using lower quality or unknown materials in their mattresses and sells them for higher prices than manufacturers that are fully transparent and use higher quality materials. Size is not the reason they are such low quality and value … it’s the culture and values of the major companies and this has changed over the past decade and a half … and consumers haven’t yet “caught up” to this new reality or been given the means to find out for themselves.

Many companies are large because of what they did in the past but I’m sure you are well aware that what they are currently doing and who and what they were accountable to in the past is completely different. They are no longer primarily focused on quality but on economics and what they primarily sell is not mattresses but profit margin to their major customers (the mass market outlets and chain stores).

I should also mention that there are also many smaller manufacturers who are not much different and are more focused on profit margins than they are on growing their company through a reputation of verifiable quality. Size is not the issue here … transparency, quality, value, and service based on meaningful information is the goal.

Tempurpedic is similar. At one point they had real value because they used a material where nobody else has anything similar or at least similar quality in their own mattresses. They were unique and had no apples to apples competition. The reputation they gained in that time served them well when other foam manufacturers began to make memory foam that was the same quality as they used and this allowed them to charge premium prices for the same quality materials as other manufacturers because consumers continued to believe that they were still “unique” which of course was supported by their heavy brand advertising. Their niche was fractured and they “owned” it. Now of course … since Serta had such an advertising coup with their iComfort … consumers in general are recognizing that Tempurpedic is not alone in their niche and that they may not even have the best quality available. This consumer awareness … although based on competing advertising more than any substance about the quality of the iComforts … has cost Tempurpedic dearly in their share prices and market share and this is likely to continue.

In response … they decided to introduce a “less expensive” Tempurpedic with the Simplicity line but instead of using high quality materials … they decided to use the equity in their name to mislead consumers into believing that their new “less expensive” line has similar quality to their higher priced models and that they are better “value”. They took the low road by using 2" of some of the lowest quality memory foam that is available anywhere (2.5 lb density) and putting this over a lower quality base foam (@ 1.8 lb) and then continuing to sell their new line for twice the price of what other mattresses that use similar quality materials are charging. In other words … their new line is just as poor value in today’s market (not yesterday’s market) as their other mattresses.

So … I continue to promote the value of never buying a brand but to focus on the quality of materials in a mattress. This is the only way to know the real quality and value of what you are buying and the manufacturers or “brands” who recognize this and want consumers to know this type of information and make meaningful comparisons with other mattresses will be the first to tell you that their brand is not the reason they have such good value. It’s the commitment of their ownership to providing genuine consumer quality and value that can be validated and where their “stories” (if they advertise at all) have substance and are not just marketing techniques.

So hopefully this will add some context and more importantly “facts” to this discussion rather than just becoming nothing more than competing opinions that have no basis behind them.

I don’t do “sound bytes” very well :slight_smile: