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Sleeptek Classic 2000, 3" wool topper review 26 Oct 2013 09:29 #1

  • dn
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Hi folks,

As I said I would in a few prior posts, this is my review about the Sleeptek Classic 2000 topper.
www.tmasc.ca/wooltoppers/sleeptek-classic-2000-wool-topper.html

Key features of the sleeptek classic 2000:
- organic, 3" of wool, organic cover
- wool is not merino wool, but instead Corriedale (sleeptek.ca/raw-materials). This is supposed to be important since Corriedale is less straight, and each wool fiber more course and zig-zaggy, and therefore less likely to compress and more suitable for sleeping on.
- if you want wool, this would be among the premium options available... I didn't bother reviewing workmanship/ quality. It's fantastic and in line with what you'd expect for a premium item.

Sleeptek (sleeptek.ca) is also known as or makes:
Sueno at The Natural Sleep Store (thenaturalsleepstore.com/sleeptek.html)
The Clean Bedroom 'Naturally Organic' brand (www.thecleanbedroom.com/Organic_Mattresses/organic_mattresses_and_toppers.html)


A little about the testing.. I am a male version of princess and pea type. My existing mattress is a Green Sleep Vicence, which is 9" of Dunlop latex surrounded in a mattress case with wool and cotton. I have 3 layers of latex, each 3", from bottom to top firm/soft/soft. I tend to buy my bedding from TMASC (tmasc.ca) who recently became a member here. I have nothing but excellent things to say of tmasc. I tend to buy in the more premium end of the scale.

My mattress is 95% tuned for me. I'm a perfectionist shooting for that last 5% perfection. I don't seem to have any alignment issues with my current mattress, and it's amazingly comfortable. I have suitable pillows, and other good beddings. Prior to the green sleep latex mattress, I had cronic back and neck pain... I've done remarkably well at significantly reducing this. I generally sleep on my side, and am 185 lbs or so, 5'9".

What I was trying to accomplish:

1. When laying on my back, my mattress feels amazing. In fact, I also have an identical but slightly firmer mattress (firm/medium/soft), and when laying on my back it feels even better! I lay on my back reading my iPad and what not for a fair while before deciding to sleep. Unfortunately, when side sleeping which is how I actually sleep, there is a touch more pressure in my shoulders and hips than I'd prefer. On the firmer mattress side sleeping was just painful. So my primary goal was to have less pressure on my shoulders and hips. I knew this might mean a trade off and it could make laying on my back feel less good, but given my sleep style I was ok with this.

2. Experiment with a more 'cloud like' feeling. I call it a but more fluff, vs latex which sort of pushes back. Either way, I wanted to experiment and satisfy my own curiousity about how a different material would feel, and wool for me has the perception of being cloud like.

3. Maintain temperature and / or warm up my bed. I sleep super hot. And when I first purchased my bedding, I did everything to sleep cooler. I have a wool duvet, brushed-twill cotton cover. Linen fitted sheet, no flat sheet. Organic wool jersey knit mattress protector. Green sleep 100% natural latex, with wool quilted into cover. And built so I sleep on the mattress, not in it, which helps with heat immensely. Plus, I have air conditioning and keep the house cold at night. Comically, given how hot I normally sleep, I've had several nights of being too cold. For the first time ever, at times, I added a second duvet (absolutely unheard of for me). This isn't a significant problem for me, since it's way easier to sleep warmer. However, I hoped adding 3" of wool might cause me to sleep a bit warmer.

4. Maintain alignment.

--

Outcomes so far using for about a week (preliminary since it takes a while for wool to compact to your shape, and any mattress changes take a while for your body to adjust):

1. I was successful, and not, in providing additional pressure relief. My shoulders feel less pressure, which is good. By my hips ache more due to more pressure, which is less good. This is the interesting paradox Phoenix has spoke to about various layers. The wool itself is soft and pressure relieving, but as it relates to the soft latex below it, it basically firms it up a bit. My rational being it adds additional surface area around me, and therefore there is more surface that needs to be depressed into the foam, which causes it to behave as firmer. It's not serious pain, and it's entirely possible what I feel will go away as the wool adjusts as do I, so I'm considering this preliminary. But, if it doesn't correct, it would mean this topper, by itself, fails to achieve that last 5%. (It might be solvable by an even softer layer of latex under it to account for the greater surface area effect). This also goes to show the art of mattress making - each layer interacts wih both the layers above, and below.

Update since initial post: the aches in hips seem to be subsiding, no doubt as I make natural subtle adjustments in sleeping on it, similar to when you adjust to a new mattress.

2. I would say that wool has a more cloud like feeling. I've tried to reserve judgement on this for a week, since wool compacts. I definitely feel it more cloud like when sleeping laying on my back: it's different than latex, and nice. I'm not sure which I prefer, and likely it would vary. When on my side, it fills in the lighter parts of me better, but unfortunately the cloud like feeling is much less noticeable when on my side. There's just less surface area on side vs back, and a more variable surface with shoulders and hips. It might be more cloud like if I didn't ache from my hips, which kind of ruins any other feeling.

3. It did warm up my bed, but didn't overhead at all. It's very nice.

4. My alignment doesn't seem negatively impacted. Back and side I've felt no change. Stomach is still doable, but there's been an ever so slight worsening of alignment. I don't really rest on stomach so that's a non issue.

--

Other thoughts and notes. Flat latex is very flat, and there is a simple elegance to that. Wool causes your bed to be all lumpy, (though no lumps, clumps, or irregularities you can feel), not in a bad way, but as it forms a cradle around your body shape. So too is the feel... Latex is essentially uniform across the surface of the bed, whereas wool naturally forms this cradle. I'm torn which I prefer, which probably means sometimes I'd prefer one, other times I'd prefer the other. I'd say wool has a more sophisticated feel, and latex more simple. I trust you could avoid the compression in wool by shaking it out regularly.

--

As I said, this is only on it for about a week, so preliminary. I'll post more if/as my review changes.

--

Conclusion. This is an amazing product. Definitely a premium quality wool topper. I'd recommend it for a number of circumstances- from those looking to feel, temperature regulation, or some softness. That said, for the perfectionist in me, I didn't get that last 5% of male-princess-and-pea perfection. Amazing product, and while it added some things I wanted, it also had some consequences i didn't want. I'm still sleeping on this and plan to for the foreseeable future to see if/how it changes. Apparently Green Sleep is testing and might release an ultra soft latex, which I'm super interested in trying next (both with and without this wool topper).

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Last edit: by dn.

Sleeptek Classic 2000, 3" wool topper review 26 Oct 2013 10:34 #2

  • Clawdia
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Sorry you didn't get your 5%! I can so identify with this. You posted a great review of your wool topper - so great that it means I can go ahead and rule out trying one of those since in large part it is the simplicity and flatness of latex that I really like.

I am, however, interested in that ultra soft latex you mentioned Green Sleep is testing.
If you hear any more about that, I'd be curious in knowing what you learn.

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Sleeptek Classic 2000, 3" wool topper review 26 Oct 2013 11:05 #3

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Hello dn,

Thank you again for sharing your experiences with everyone on this forum. My coworker Ruth Ann also has one of these toppers and she has tried the topper underneath her mattress protector (which is the way I recommend to use it to keep it cleaner and have less maintenance), but she really prefers hers with just the fitted sheet over the topper for maximum comfort. The only downside of doing this is that you would want to take the topper outside on a dry day and place it in the sunlight to freshen it up and likely need to do this a couple of times a year. Organic wool's with a high lanolin content are technically self cleaning fibres but the sunlight really speeds up this process. If the topper gets wet from any kind of precipitation you are better off drying it out of the sun otherwise the wool shrinks from drying too quickly.

Cheers,
Daniel

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Sleeptek Classic 2000, 3" wool topper review 26 Oct 2013 11:15 #4

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@daniel, I will try that. I do have it under the mattress protector (green sleep valiso), for the same reasons you've said. Part of my 'approach' is to essentially buy one of everything to test, and compare them all ;) I'm also mindful that I'd like a month to pass to let my body adjust too. The fact I'm still using the wool, being such a perfectionist, is a testament to the amazing quality and comfort of the product. :)

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Sleeptek Classic 2000, 3" wool topper review 26 Oct 2013 14:20 #5

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Hi dn,

1. I was successful, and not, in providing additional pressure relief. My shoulders feel less pressure, which is good. By my hips ache more due to more pressure, which is less good. This is the interesting paradox Phoenix has spoke to about various layers. The wool itself is soft and pressure relieving, but as it relates to the soft latex below it, it basically firms it up a bit. My rational being it adds additional surface area around me, and therefore there is more surface that needs to be depressed into the foam, which causes it to behave as firmer. It's not serious pain, and it's entirely possible what I feel will go away as the wool adjusts as do I, so I'm considering this preliminary. But, if it doesn't correct, it would mean this topper, by itself, fails to achieve that last 5%. (It might be solvable by an even softer layer of latex under it to account for the greater surface area effect). This also goes to show the art of mattress making - each layer interacts wih both the layers above, and below.


Sometimes very small variations in sleeping position can make a difference in pressure distribution along the surface of your body. It may be worth trying a pillow under your bottom knee when you are side sleeping to raise it a bit because for some people this can lead to a slight change in sleeping position which may be rotated or "lean" slightly less forward and creates a slightly different body profile with different pressure distribution and pressure points on the mattress. A pillow under the lower arm (under the elbow to the hand) can also make a surprising difference in shoulder pressure in some cases.

Sometimes positioning pillows in various areas of your mattress or under different parts of your body that can change rotational alignment or pressure distribution can make a surprising difference in "fine tuning" a sleeping system.

Phoenix
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Last edit: by phoenix.

Sleeptek Classic 2000, 3" wool topper review 26 Oct 2013 14:43 #6

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@Phoenix, thanks for the advice. Indeed, I will be and have been trying subtle variations as you've said, although I'll try the pillow advice which is new. I had a similar adjustment and minor aches going from my old 15 y/o mattress to the latex, so I know it takes a bit to adjust.

It's entirely possible that it becomes perfect. It's also entirely possible that last 5% to perfection I seek is elusively not attainable, and what I have is as close to perfect as it gets- but I won't know that till I try everything. I've already significantly improved my sleep, significantly reduced chronic back pain, and sleep more cool and comfortable, so I'm delighted.

Plus, trying this stuff out provides me a certain level of entertainment and satisfies my desire to compare and contrast. So hopefully my OCD in bedding can help others out too :)

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Sleeptek Classic 2000, 3" wool topper review 26 Oct 2013 15:52 #7

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Hi dn,

Plus, trying this stuff out provides me a certain level of entertainment and satisfies my desire to compare and contrast. So hopefully my OCD in bedding can help others out too :)


I completely understand this :)

Once of my favorite things besides experimenting with different ideas is talking with some of the more "geeky" or technical people that I know about subtle variations in design and materials and the effect they have on different people. Because I can't test everything in person of course I'm fortunate to have come to know many people like this who enjoy a long technical conversation as much as me and have many years of experience in trying different combinations and "theories".

In this industry with all the old and new information and materials that are constantly being refined and changing ... the more you know the more you realize that the ongoing learning curve involved with the "art and science" of mattress design and bedding never ends :)

Phoenix
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Sleeptek Classic 2000, 3" wool topper review 26 Oct 2013 16:17 #8

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@Phoenix, thanks for the advice. Indeed, I will be and have been trying subtle variations as you've said, although I'll try the pillow advice which is new. I had a similar adjustment and minor aches going from my old 15 y/o mattress to the latex, so I know it takes a bit to adjust.

It's entirely possible that it becomes perfect. It's also entirely possible that last 5% to perfection I seek is elusively not attainable, and what I have is as close to perfect as it gets- but I won't know that till I try everything. I've already significantly improved my sleep, significantly reduced chronic back pain, and sleep more cool and comfortable, so I'm delighted.

Plus, trying this stuff out provides me a certain level of entertainment and satisfies my desire to compare and contrast. So hopefully my OCD in bedding can help others out too :)


That's so exactly the way I feel that it's downright funny (OCD and all)!

Phoenix, looks like you're stuck with both dn and me, at least for a while. :lol:

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Sleeptek Classic 2000, 3" wool topper review 26 Oct 2013 16:58 #9

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That's so exactly the way I feel that it's downright funny (OCD and all)!
Phoenix, looks like you're stuck with both dn and me, at least for a while. :lol:


Sweet. Evidence that I'm not crazy, for there are more people that think the same way! :)

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Sleeptek Classic 2000, 3" wool topper review 26 Oct 2013 20:39 #10

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Hi dn and Clawdia,

Sweet. Evidence that I'm not crazy, for there are more people that think the same way! :)


I'm pretty sure that you may be more crazy than you think ... at least that's what people (especially my kids) tell me all the time :)

I'm not even sure if there is any cure ...or for that matter if I even want to find one!

Phoenix
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Last edit: by phoenix.
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