In the world of mattresses, two of the newest kids on the block are the memory foam mattress, and the latex mattress. At first glance they may seem like they are very similar products, and in many ways they are, but when it comes to the latex Vs memory foam mattress comparison, there are some important differences that customers need to be aware of in order to make the right choice for them.
To start off, memory foam is a man-made material, while latex is a natural product – although just to add to the confusion a little, there is also processed latex which is more often used in cheaper latex mattresses and, in my opinion, is best avoided.
Memory foam mattresses are sensitive to body heat, and have a much softer feel to them than latex mattresses. They tend to be far more malleable than their latex counterparts, and become softer as you lie on them and they ‘adapt’ to your body position as they begin to warm up. You will notice this more when you first lie on your mattress, it will feel firm initially, but will start to ‘work’ properly when it starts to react to your body temperature.
Memory Foam Mattresses
If you think that a memory foam mattress might be right for you, there are a few things you need to consider. Firstly is the quality or density of the mattress you are looking at, as with most things in life, you get what you pay for and it’s no different with memory foam. The denser the foam, the higher the quality of the mattress, and as it is much more expensive to manufacture the denser foams, these tend to be much more expensive. You can buy cheaper memory foam, and it might sound like a good deal at the time, but you won’t get the same level of support and I’m hearing stories of people who’ve had to replace the cheaper mattresses after as little as 3 years of use.
Next, and most importantly, you need to consider comfort – the main factor that makes a memory foam mattress comfortable, is the level of support it gives you. You can easily check whether a mattress is offering you enough support by lying flat on your back and trying to slide a flat hand beneath the small of your back. If you can do this easily, this is probably not the mattress for you.
Thickness of the memory foam is the final element to base your decision on. Ideally the memory foam should be between 4 and 6 inches thick if it is too thin, parts of your body may end up in contact with the supporting base of high resiliency foam material which is not meant to be slept on – if this happens, you will probably find yourself in discomfort. Anything thicker than 6 inches may be too soft, which again can lead to discomfort.
Latex_MattressMany people prefer latex over memory foam because it is a natural product and has hypo-allergenic and anti-microbial properties. When you add to this the fact that a latex mattress is virtually indestructible and it doesn’t share the problems of dust mites and fungus that a standard mattress might suffer from, you can perhaps see why they are thought of as the healthier option.
Comfort levels are excellent with this type of mattress, they are firm to the touch, but allow the feeling of motion more than a memory foam mattress. The best description I have heard describing the qualities of this type of mattress, is that they are like a “mattress cover filled with jello” – and in my opinion that is the perfect description of how it feels to sleep on a latex mattress.
You can find hundreds of articles written about each type of mattress, and I would encourage you to read some of them if you are still undecided, but when it comes to the latex Vs memory foam mattress comparison, my choice would be the latex mattress. I would choose one of them not because I think they are any more comfortable, but overall the natural qualities of the latex wins through for me.
Latex is a material that has been increasingly used in mattress-making for the last decade and more. Most of the leading manufacturers use it in their ranges now. It’s a naturally occurring rubber that is well known for the support qualities it provides in mattresses and it has become popular because of this and its benefits of durability, allowing the mattress to breathe and the cushioning it provides. Like with everything it is not without its down sides and here we take a look at some of the more common latex mattress complaints.
We should preface this by saying that latex mattresses generally receive praise and good ratings from previous users in terms of its balance between softness and support, its excellent containment of motion, its assistance for those suffering back pain and allergies, as well as its durability. The complaints we list are not typical for everyone. This should not be surprising as there is a price premium you pay for choosing a latex composition, which suggests that it is both a sought after item and effective in what it does. This has been the case in our findings, as a general rule.
Premature sagging has been a complaint of these mattresses, but perhaps more commonly in lower-end models. Also a related complaint from some users is that impressions of the body are left on the mattress. Both of these problems can be addressed by regular turning and flipping of the mattress, which redistributes the areas receiving the weight and ensures that all of the mattress gets used.
Odors are reported by some users too. This is only usually an initial odor that disperses with use. A little bit of preparation is necessary to address this problem – making sure that the mattress is aired in a well-ventilated room before usage (maybe for up to a week, if possible) is the best solution.
The online latex mattress reviews also point to them being very heavy. Latex is a dense substance so that a high usage will make the model considerably heavier than a foam or innerspring mattress. This means that it will be a “2-man job” to regularly flip and turn a Queen or King size latex model.
A couple of other things to watch out for if you are considering one of these items:
Firstly the seams, these occur because the latex sheets inside the mattress are glued together. This won’t be a problem in the better ranges but can be a problem in cheaper mattresses as the seams can be uncomfortable to lie on.
Secondly latex mattresses are expensive. They generally start from $1000 upwards, which means that you have to be completely “sold” on the benefits of latex before you are willing to pay the premium for using it. At the moment it is still perceived as being an exclusive and high-end material. This may change as time goes on, but users are sometimes harsh on latex mattresses because they have paid 20% more for them than other similar quality mattresses.
If your home is not big enough for a spare room for people to sleep over but you want to be able to offer visiting friends a place to rest their head at nights, you may find a twin air mattress is a great solution for you.
These items are inflatable beds, measuring around 39 inches wide × 75 to 80 inches, which can be packed away when not being used, then brought out and inflated as needed. Nowadays they are very easy and convenient to use as they often come with an electric or battery-operated pump that will inflate the mattress in a few minutes or less. So, if you keep it in the closet with a twin bed in a bag , you can just add a pillow and a comforter and you have a bed ready for your guest in no time!
Of course the space saving element of these mattresses is attractive for those living in apartments, but they have been made more and more comfortable over the years that some people choose these items as their permanent bed in their main bedroom and nowadays they come in all sizes – even Kings! Gone are the days when this was just a camping bed for the “softer” campers who didn’t like the ground-sheet and sleeping bag concept; now they can be serious beds.
Over the years the twin size air mattress has evolved with new, more comfortable materials used on the sleeping surface of the mattress – softer and more capable of holding the sheets in place (which was a problem with the early air mattresses) – as well as non-slip additions to the underside which means they can be used on tiled floors without too much migration in the middle of the night!
Air mattresses are usually made by specialist manufacturers, not the conventional mattress companies (excluding the likes of Sleep Number which use an adjustable air-chamber mattress for their beds.) They might be camping and outdoor specialists for example. Some names you will come across when searching for these items will be Intex, Coleman, Cabela, Aero International or Texsport. You will also come across frames that can be used to raise the mattress off the ground, but these are normally used for camping.
Of course, the other major benefit of these beds, apart from the convenience and space-saving, is that they are usually cheap. You can pick up one of these items online for just $15 or $20 for the most basic vinyl item. They can go up to $700 or 800 for the King size mattresses with all the whistles and bells, but if you are looking for a reasonably comfortable twin size item as a spare bed $50 to $80 will get you a decent standard.