Talalay comfort layer vs. organic Dunlop

My wife and I recently tried a SavvyRest 3-layer, firm Dunlop/medium Dunlop/soft Talalay, and liked it better than the other options in the store. My wife weighs 120 and I’m 190. Neither the salesperson nor my wife could see any problems with my alignment on the soft Talalay, and my wife very much liked the feel of it. Like a number of others on this web site, we’re put off by SavvyRest’s prices and lack of a return policy, so are seriously considering three other vendors. A salesperson I talked with on the phone at one of them, Foam Sweet Foam, was a little hesitant to recommend the same configuration, given my weight. He suggested considering their organic Dunlop for all three layers. The organic soft has the same ILD rating (20, +/- 2) as their Talalay but the density rating is higher, 4.6 vs 3.5, which he thought might provide more support for me and would feel about as soft for my wife. In addition, the medium and firm Dunlop layers at FSF have somewhat softer ILD ratings than those at SavvyRest. If we go with FSF, I’m wondering whether we should just stick with the Talalay comfort layer, or would there only be a slight difference in the “softness” feel of the organic Dunlop, which is more important to my wife. I’m also considering Sleepez and Sleepingorganic, which match-up a little more closely to the SavvyRest set-up. Also, thank you for the service this site provides to all of us unsuspecting mattress shoppers–it’s been a great help in sorting out the options.

Hi IndyEd,

They are certainly making a valid point and the Dunlop has a higher compression modulus than Talalay (it gets firmer faster with compression because of its higher density) so it would be more supportive for you. The benefits of doing this would depend though on the rest of the layers as well because every layer contributes to both pressure relief and alignment although the upper layers are more about pressure relief and the lower layers are more about the primary support of the mattress. Most manufacturers will tend towards firmer rather than softer in their recommendations because it is a “safer” choice (it can be adjusted more easily than a mattress that is too soft) and has durability benefits as well. their experience also tells them that most people will pay more attention to comfort (pressure relief) and less attention to support (alignment) when they are testing mattresses because it’s more difficult to tell.

Given though that you tested specifically for this and that you are not unusually heavy … I don’t really see a problem with 3" of softer talalay (depending on your body type and sleeping position) although I do understand the idea behind the suggestion.

The other issue that they may be thinking about is that soft Talalay if it is 100% natural (rather than blended) may be less durable than the equivalent 100% natural Dunlop (whether it is certified organic or not) in the softer ILD’s (you can read more about this in this article).

So I think he is making suggestions that he believes would be in your best interest and probably taking into account that the ILD’s of the other layers they use may be softer as well (although ILD is never exact with latex … especially with Dunlop) which means that a slightly firmer top layer may end up with a similar degree of pressure relief. Two pathways to a similar goal in other words :slight_smile:

While I would tend to pay the most attention to your personal testing … this would only be truly accurate if the layers (and the cover) were identical but because of the softer layers at FSF … I would put a lot of weight into their suggestions (or the suggestions of any manufacturer about their specific mattress) because they are doing some “translating” of different layering in a “best effort” to help you reach the same end result.

The other option you have available would be a split top layer where you could layer each side a little differently to take the needs and preferences of each of you into account but this could only be done with different ILD’s of the same material (or at least the same layer thickness) because different types of latex may have different layer thicknesses (not all full latex cores are exactly 6" so a 3" half layer may not be quite 3").

So overall … my tendency would be to provide the results of your testing as accurately as possible to each manufacturer you were working with and talking to along with your (or their) best knowledge of the layering of the mattress you were testing and then let them “translate” and make suggestions based on any differences they may know of between what you tested and what you are considering purchasing from them. Different layer thicknesses, different types of latex, different latex sources, different ILD’s or ILD ranges, and different covers can all be part of any differences between mattresses and it’s somewhat of an “intuitive” process sometimes to try and “imagine” which layering option that they have available may be the most similar to what you tested and also to use their experience and knowledge to let you know of any alternative suggestions that they feel may provide you with better benefits (short and long term) than what you may already have already considered or tested.

In the end … once all the suggestions and the pros and cons of each difference are known … then the final choice would depend on how you felt about the “cumulative effect” of all the information, how strongly you felt abiout the accuracy of your testing, and your “gut feel” about what would be best for you because there is never a black and white answer … only lighter and darker shades of grey :slight_smile:


Greetings, Phoenix: thanks for your comments. Your thoughts will certainly help us in evaluating the recommendations from the three vendors. I’ll let you know how this works out.

Hi IndyEd,

I’m looking forward to hearing about what you end up choosing :slight_smile:

You are definitely choosing between “good and good” which is the best place to be!