The Pros and Cons of a Latex Mattress

Trying to figure out if a latex mattress is right for you? In this post, I will go through some of the positives and negatives of latex. First, I’ll tell you what a latex mattress is. A latex mattress is made with layers of latex or rubber. The sap of the rubber tree is harvested and baked into a foam, that acts as the mattress core. The cover of the mattress is typically made from organic cotton and wool. The wool in the casing acts as a natural fire retardant, so there is no need for fire retardant chemicals.

There are two types of latex:  Dunlop and Talalay. Talalay latex goes through two extra steps. After the latex is poured, the mold is sealed and the process is continued in a vacuum chamber. The mold is then flash-frozen before it’s baked. Dunlop latex is denser which makes it firmer than Talalay. Talalay has a pillowly soft surface feel. Side sleepers can benefit from a Talalay mattress, if they need extra pressure point relief. Dunlop is a little cheaper to make so usually has a lower price point, and is a good choice for customers who like a firmer mattress. Most manufacturers will make their mattresses with one type of latex or the other. However, Savvy Rest one of the brands we carry offers both types.

Okay now the pros:

Comfort – Latex mattresses are extremely comfortable. They are supportive but still offer the pressure point relief that you need.

Organic/Natural/Sustainable – Natural latex is a sustainable alternative to polyurethane and memory foam. It is not synthetic or treated with possibly harmful chemicals. Latex can be certified as GOTS the industry’s standard for organic certification. Latex is actually biodegradable.  If you left it out in the sun for long periods of time unprotected, it was start to decompose.

Customizable – Many latex mattresses can be customized to your firmness preference. Both Dunlop and Talalay latex come in different densities/firmness. You can have a range of firmness from plush to firm. The mattress can even be split down the middle, where one side can be firmer than the other. This works well for couples that may have a difference in opinion as to what constitutes the perfect mattress.

Pressure relief – As mentioned before latex offers excellent pressure relief, especially Talalaly. If you are a side sleeper, Talalay can cradle your hips and offer gentle support.

Sleeping Cool – Unlike memory foam, latex does not trap in heat. This enables you to have a more comfortable nights sleep. It is this chemical reaction between memory foam and your body heat that allows the mattress to conform to your body’s curves. This reaction may feel good at first but will cause your body to overheat.

Durable – Latex mattresses are designed to be durable. They usually have much longer warranties then synthetic conventional mattresses. They are less prone to dips overtime.


Okay there are a few cons.

Weight – Latex mattresses are heavy and can not be supported on a traditional box spring. It is preferred that the mattresses are placed upon a slated bed or foundation, where the slats are no more than 3.5 inches apart. This will also allow the mattress to breath.

Price: Yes, latex mattresses are more expensive because of the natural materials that comprise them. There is a cost to the certifications they must go through as well. However, as a natural mattress store owner I have to say if you can make the price point work it is worth it! We try to carry mattresses at many different price points.