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Need new mattress ASAP; would love feedback on hybrid latex and all latex online & local options 10 Dec 2013 08:42 #1

  • rand
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Phoenix,

First, this is a great site and service you provide, so thank you! Sorry for the length of this post and all the questions, but would greatly appreciate your or others thoughts on any any of them.

After trying a lot of beds at several local retailers I finally tried one that felt great and much better than the others. This was an all (natural) latex bed at the Healthy Back Store. Every other bed I tried, from coil to Tempurpedic, didn’t feel quite right; this one felt great. However the price for a queen or king (still debating which size to get) was around $2,800 to $3,500. Currently they are running a 20% off sale, but the price would still be steeper than I can really afford, so I’ve been looking at less expensive alternatives. Still, I’d be interested in your evaluation of their beds if you are familiar with them. I came across some less expensive alternatives and would like to get some feedback from you or others about this. I’ve been procrastinating, stuck in the decision-making process - caught between too high cost of all latex at local stores and unsure about gambling on less expensive versions online - but now have to get something asap as I might have a mice infestation in my very old mattress, so am now sleeping on inexpensive air mattress, which is okay for a few days, but…. Guess the mice are getting me to finally move on this! I also wonder if the fact that I’ve been sleeping on a mattress that is at least 24 years old makes most new beds feel fairly uncomfortable since I’m used to sinking in a mattress, thus at least partly explaining why I only found one mattress out of many to be unequivocally comfortable (the Tempurpedics I tried were comfortable, but I'm not used to that feeling of being enveloped and much preferred the “springiness” of the latex I tried).

ULTIMATE DREAMS or BROOKLYN BEDDING (all latex and hybrid latex)
The reviews on Amazon and here are overwhelmingly very positive for both types, but, after researching on this site, I’m wondering how much stock one can really put in such reviews, given that almost all are by folks who’ve only had the mattress for a few days or weeks, or occasionally months. Given how they are written, I also wonder if at least some reviews on Amazon are phony.
So can you say anything about a direct comparison between the Ultimate Dreams or Brooklyn Bedding latex hybrids vs. their more expensive all latex mattresses? Would either likely have a similar feel to the all latex mattress (either the Bliss Elegance or Bliss Essence models) I loved at the Healthy Back Store? Is the difference more a matter of durability than comfort and feel? I am mostly a side sleeper, occasionally back sleeper, and weigh about 165 lbs.

The reviews and price seem to be the main selling point (at least for me, and, I’m guessing, for many others) for the Ultimate Dreams hybrid, so how much stock should one put in these glowing reviews? On Amazon, out of over 300 reviews for one hybrid latex model, the lowest rating was a 3 star (though found one other that was one star that didn’t seem to be counted in the rating star breakdown) and that was for an outgassing/odor problem, but otherwise was very positive about the mattress. Also, Brooklyn Bedding offers similar mattresses to Ultimate Dreams, yet most are a little more expensive. On the other hand, they have the 120 day return and free trial and I don’t see anything about this for Ultimate Dreams. Do you know if you could get the same return policy and free trial on an Ultimate Dreams purchase? I chatted with someone from Brooklyn Bedding yesterday and he said that their hybrid latex mattresses are similar to the Ultimate Dreams ones, but still unclear what the differences are or if they are important in any significant way.
I looked at your list of good local retailers for my area (near Washington D.C.) but as far as I can tell, none that are reasonably close carry latex hybrids. If you know of any that do, in order to try to see what an Ultimate Dreams hybrid would feel like, I’d appreciate it.

ORIGINAL MATTRESS FACTORY
One other choice I’m looking at is the OMF latex mattress. I originally found out about them from Consumer Reports, which rated them, as I recall, the top mattress seller in the country. I read one post from you that seemed lukewarm about their latex mattress, but wonder if the fact that these are 2-sided mattresses gives them some sort of edge, and what would that mean as far as PPP. Does it mean, for example, that their 7” of latex would be on each side, for a total of 14”? Their latex beds are less expensive than any other all latex I’ve found so far, but would also be a gamble as no retail outlet near enough to get too soon. How, for instance, might their latex mattresses compare to the all-latex ones sold by Ultimate Dreams or Brooklyn Bedding, and to their hybrid-latex models?

Thanks for any feedback from anyone!

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Need new mattress ASAP; would love feedback on hybrid latex and all latex online & local options 10 Dec 2013 16:30 #2

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Hi rand,

Your questions are a little bit too broad to provide more specific or detailed answers but just in case you haven't read it yet ... the first place I would start your research is the tutorial post here which has all the basic information, steps, and guidelines that you will need to make the best possible choices and make meaningful comparisons between mattresses.

ULTIMATE DREAMS or BROOKLYN BEDDING (all latex and hybrid latex)
The reviews on Amazon and here are overwhelmingly very positive for both types, but, after researching on this site, I’m wondering how much stock one can really put in such reviews, given that almost all are by folks who’ve only had the mattress for a few days or weeks, or occasionally months. Given how they are written, I also wonder if at least some reviews on Amazon are phony.


Brooklyn Bedding is one of the members here which means that I believe they compete well with the best in the industry . I know them well enough to know that they don't put "fake" reviews on their website but I don't pay much attention to mattress reviews anyway (see post #13 here ) and the most effective way to assess a mattress or make meaningful comparisons is to look at the specific materials and components in the mattress. A mattress is only as durable as its construction and the type and quality of the materials inside it regardless of which manufacturer's name is on the label. Comparing materials rather than brands is by far the most effective way of comparing mattresses.

I would need to know which specific mattress you are considering to make any detailed comments (or link to a post that has comments about the specific mattress) but in general they use high quality materials in every budget range and are very good value. You can also read more about the differences between an all latex mattress and a latex hybrid in post #2 here but which one is best for you would also depend on the criteria of your personal value equation that are most important to you.

After trying a lot of beds at several local retailers I finally tried one that felt great and much better than the others. This was an all (natural) latex bed at the Healthy Back Store. Every other bed I tried, from coil to Tempurpedic, didn’t feel quite right; this one felt great. However the price for a queen or king (still debating which size to get) was around $2,800 to $3,500. Currently they are running a 20% off sale, but the price would still be steeper than I can really afford, so I’ve been looking at less expensive alternatives.


The Healthy Back mattresses use blended Talalay latex made by Latex International so in terms of quality/durability the materials would compare directly with any other mattress that also used blended Talalay latex (including the Total Latex Mattress) although the quality of a mattress has little to do with how it feels or how suitable the specific mattress is for your body type, sleeping positions, and preferences in terms of PPP because two mattresses that use the same materials can have very different designs and layering and can be very different from each other. They are also very similar to the Pure Latex Bliss blended Talalay latex mattresses which may also be worth considering but in terms of quality/durability, any mattress that uses blended Talalay would be comparable in terms of the quality of materials to any other that used the same material even if they aren't comparable in terms of PPP or in terms of value (which would depend on the specifics of each mattress, the amount of each material, and the other parts of your personal value equation that may be an important part of any mattress purchase for you.

I looked at your list of good local retailers for my area (near Washington D.C.) but as far as I can tell, none that are reasonably close carry latex hybrids. If you know of any that do, in order to try to see what an Ultimate Dreams hybrid would feel like, I’d appreciate it.


I don't have a list of the specific mattresses that are carried by retail stores in any specific area (that would be more than any one person could keep up with) but some phone calls will quickly tell you whether any of the stores on the list carry them. If there aren't any available locally then you can still test any mattress that used the same type and firmness level of latex in the top few inches (say 3" to 5") of the mattress to give you a better sense of what latex feels like in any particular softness level (ILD) because most of the initial "feel" of a mattress comes from the upper layers of the mattress.

Also, Brooklyn Bedding offers similar mattresses to Ultimate Dreams, yet most are a little more expensive. On the other hand, they have the 120 day return and free trial and I don’t see anything about this for Ultimate Dreams. Do you know if you could get the same return policy and free trial on an Ultimate Dreams purchase?


Brooklyn Bedding and Dreamfoam (that makes the Ultimate Dreams) are sister companies but they have different designs and policies. A few of the Ultimate Dreams mattresses have exchangeable comfort layers so you can adjust the firmness of the comfort layer of a mattress both before and after a purchase (like many of the Brooklyn Bedding mattresses) but many of them are "finished" mattresses which don't have any exchange options after a purchase. If a Dreamfoam mattresses is fulfilled by Amazon then the return policy would be based on Amazon's return policy and if it was fulfilled by Dreamfoam then the return policy would involve significant shipping charges to return the mattress. In general terms ... Dreamfoam carries their lower / mid budget range mattresses and Brooklyn Bedding has their mid range and higher quality and budget mattresses with some overlap in the middle. Brooklyn Bedding also has a more liberal exchange policy (with a longer trial period) on their mattresses with adjustable comfort layers and also has a free return on some of their memory foam mattresses. Because exchange and return policies can vary with each mattress ... it's best to find out the specifics for the actual mattress you are considering and of course this would be a factor in the value of a mattress purchase and your personal value equation.

ORIGINAL MATTRESS FACTORY
One other choice I’m looking at is the OMF latex mattress. I originally found out about them from Consumer Reports, which rated them, as I recall, the top mattress seller in the country. I read one post from you that seemed lukewarm about their latex mattress, but wonder if the fact that these are 2-sided mattresses gives them some sort of edge, and what would that mean as far as PPP. Does it mean, for example, that their 7” of latex would be on each side, for a total of 14”? Their latex beds are less expensive than any other all latex I’ve found so far, but would also be a gamble as no retail outlet near enough to get too soon. How, for instance, might their latex mattresses compare to the all-latex ones sold by Ultimate Dreams or Brooklyn Bedding, and to their hybrid-latex models?


I'm not sure where you read that I was "luke warm" about their latex mattresses because blended Talalay latex is a very high quality material which I like no matter which manufacturer uses it in their mattresses. You can also read a little more about the benefits of a two sided mattress in post #3 here and the other posts it links to. Their new latex mattresses are a two sided latex/polyfoam hybrid although some of their stores may still have the old two sided versions available which were all latex except for some polyfoam in the quilting of the mattress. Original mattress tends to be much better quality/value than most of the mainstream manufacturers they compete with and they are also transparent about the materials they use in their mattresses so I think they would be well worth considering in any area where they have a store so you can test them in person.

Their Serenity latex mattress has a polyfoam core in the middle and a 3" blended Talalay latex comfort layer on both sides (1" of 19 ILD and 2" of 24 ILD) which is the same material as Brooklyn Bedding and Dreamfoam uses in many of their mattrresses. Post #3 here also compares the old and new versions of their latex mattresses.

If you were outside of the delivery area for one of their stores then there would be a significant shipping charge and if you couldn't test it in person and because there are no returns or ability to adjust the comfort level of the mattress they would be a much more risky choice if you were too far away to test them in person for PPP. If you didn't like it there would be no other latex mattresses to exchange for.

Phoenix
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Last edit: by phoenix.

Need new mattress ASAP; would love feedback on hybrid latex and all latex online & local options 10 Dec 2013 17:25 #3

  • rand
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Phoenix

Thanks for the rapid and thorough reply. However I must say I'm finding all the things (types of latex, ILDs, etc.) to be getting
somewhat mindnumbing and hard to keep in mind when trying to compare mattresses. So how about if I put a question this way:
If you start with a roughly fixed budget, say about $2,000 maximum, would you be able to compare latex mattresses in terms of quality and value? Say Brooklyn Bedding's all latex vs. Healthy Back's Bliss Essence? I think the one I tried that felt so good was the more expensive and softer Bliss Elegance, but plan to try the Essence tomorrow. If that feels about as good as the Elegance (real good) would the "bird-in-the-hand" of having actually tested it outweigh, say, a few hundred dollars savings from getting the Brooklyn Bedding all latex? Looks like Ultimate Dreams also makes an all latex, if you can compare it to the Brooklyn Bedding one.

One other complicating factor I haven't seen mentioned is the price difference between different size mattresses. I'm on the fence about whether to get a King or Queen. Some lines, like Brooklyn Bedding's all latex, are only about $100 more for the King over the Queen, whereas others have much more of a difference. For instance, Healthy Back' Bliss Essence is $600 more for the King than the Queen. So a good value for a King may not be such a great value in a Queen, even though the actual cost for the King will still be higher. If you have any comments on this I'd be interested in hearing them.

Thanks

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Need new mattress ASAP; would love feedback on hybrid latex and all latex online & local options 10 Dec 2013 21:28 #4

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Hi rand,

The Brooklyn Bedding Total latex mattress and the Healthy Back Essence use exactly the same type of blended Talalay latex (except the Healthy Back versions use a thin layer of Talalay GL on top which is blended Talalay latex with some gel blended into it to help with temperature regulation).

With two mattresses that use the same type of materials ... the quality of the materials would be identical. The only difference in terms of durability would be that softer layers are generally less durable than firmer layers of any material but this is secondary to the type of material itself.

In terms of the value of a mattress purchase (vs the "commodity value" of the mattress itself) this would depend on the parts of your personal value equation that are most important to you. You can always take the price of the mattress and divide it by the thickness of the latex layers to get a price per inch of latex and then adjust the numbers to take the extra cost of the wool in the quilting in the Dreamfoam into account and then spec out the cost of the cover in each mattress and you would end up with the relative "value" from a raw materials point of view (assuming you could find out all the information you needed in the first place) but this would be meaningless in any practical terms and would have nothing to do with how well you sleep on each mattress because the designs would still be different.

The most important part of the "value" of a mattress is the suitability of the mattress design and how well it matches your specific needs and preferences in terms of PPP. Only you and your own experience and/or testing can assess this. The next most important part of "value" is the relative quality and durability of each mattress so that you have a reasonable expectation that the materials won't soften or degrade prematurely. In terms of quality/durability (which is all I can speak to) they would be close to identical because they use the same materials.

If you can't test a mattress in person then you would also need to decide on the "value" of any return or exchange options that were available to you to offset the risk of an online purchase that you can't test beforehand in person that may not be suitable for you. While accurate and objective testing isn't always perfect ... it will usually be "close enough" for most people (if you follow the testing guidelines) that if anything only minor fine tuning will be necessary (using mattress protectors, mattress pads, toppers, sheets, and bedding).

All of this is part of each person's personal value equation and each person may have a different set of priorities which is why for one person a mattress that costs $3000 may be better value than a very similar mattress that uses similar materials and only costs $1500 but where the more costly mattress is a better "match" for all the criteria that are most important to them.

My role is to help the members here find better manufacturers and retailers that are more open and transparent, provide better service and guidance, and use better quality materials at better prices than most of the mainstream mattresses that the majority of consumers end up purchasing so you can find out what is in your mattress, learn which materials are more durable than others, make more meaningful comparisons between mattresses, and avoid the worst choices that use lower quality materials that will soften or break down much too quickly that are so common in the industry.

You can compare any two mattresses in terms of the quality of the materials (and there are also different definitions of quality besides just durability as you can see in post #4 here ) but only each person can compare two mattresses in terms of the value of the purchase because each person's definition of value may be very different (see post #13 here for more about the most important parts of the "value" of a mattress purchase).

I think the one I tried that felt so good was the more expensive and softer Bliss Elegance, but plan to try the Essence tomorrow. If that feels about as good as the Elegance (real good) would the "bird-in-the-hand" of having actually tested it outweigh, say, a few hundred dollars savings from getting the Brooklyn Bedding all latex?

This is an example of something that only each person can answer for themselves. If you are on the "I can sleep on anything" end of the scale then the answer may be no because the differences between the designs of the mattress may not be so important and there may be a configuration of the Total latex mattress that is "close enough" even though it wouldn't be exactly the same. If you are on the "princess and the pea" end of the range then the answer may be yes because even small differences in layer thicknesses, ILD, or the type of cover and quilting materials may make the two mattresses different enough that one would work well for you and the other one wouldn't. The comfort exchange options for the BB all latex may also be a factor because you could also exchange a layer in the Total Latex mattress which may make it more suitable or even better than one of the Healthy Back versions but it still wouldn't be the same because the designs would still be different. You can read more about the different ways that one mattress may "match" another one in post #9 here .

So overall ... only you can decide whether a few hundred dollars is significant measured against the risk of the purchase, the options you have available to make changes or exchanges after a purchase, the accuracy and objectivity of your testing, the confidence you have after a more detailed conversations with Brooklyn Bedding (including any specifics of mattresses you have tested and liked that you know the specifics of the mattress) that their mattress has good odds of being a good match for you, the accuracy of your testing for PPP, and all the other parts of a mattress purchase that are most important to you including your confidence that the mattress you end up purchasing will be the one that gives you the best possible quality of sleep over the next decade or more which is by far the most important part of the value of any purchase. In general I use a guideline that a difference of about 20% between an online purchase and a local purchase that is similar in terms of materials and design as being "equivalent value" but this would be different for each person depending on their risk tolerance and the amount of further customizing or exchanges that are available after a purchase to help offset any risk.


Looks like Ultimate Dreams also makes an all latex, if you can compare it to the Brooklyn Bedding one.

this is an example

Dreamfoam and Brooklyn Bedding both sell the same Total Latex Mattress at the same price but Brooklyn Bedding also makes another all latex mattress called the Essence which uses 100% natural Talalay, 100% natural Dunlop, and only wool in the quilting which isn't available from Dreamfoam.

One other complicating factor I haven't seen mentioned is the price difference between different size mattresses. I'm on the fence about whether to get a King or Queen. Some lines, like Brooklyn Bedding's all latex, are only about $100 more for the King over the Queen, whereas others have much more of a difference. For instance, Healthy Back' Bliss Essence is $600 more for the King than the Queen. So a good value for a King may not be such a great value in a Queen, even though the actual cost for the King will still be higher. If you have any comments on this I'd be interested in hearing them.


The size of a mattress is a personal preference that would depend on the preferences and sleeping style of the people sleeping on the mattress and the amount of room you have available in the bedroom and of course to some degree your budget. Most people would prioritize the size as one of the most important factors at the beginning of their mattress research and then only look at and compare mattresses in the size they had already decided was best for them but for those that would be happy with either a king or a queen then the relative differences in pricing between the different sizes for two different manufacturers could also be a factor in their personal value equation.

Phoenix
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Last edit: by phoenix.

Need new mattress ASAP; would love feedback on hybrid latex and all latex online & local options 11 Dec 2013 08:24 #5

  • rand
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Phoenix

Thanks again for another comprehensive reply. I'm beginning to think that you are really a team of at least 3 people, given
all your responses and how prompt you usually are, and at seemingly all hours!

Just to clarify my understanding of your last response - I plan to test the Healthy Back Bliss Essence today. If I find it comfortable
and meeting your PPP criteria (hoping I can get someone to go with me to observe spine, as otherwise, how could I really do this in side position), is there a way to know if the feel would be similar to the Ultimate Dreams or Brooklyn Bedding all latex mattresses? Do I need to ask Healthy Back to provide details on all the layers and their ILDs to know this?

So far, I've not found any seller within reasonable driving distance to try latex over foam and only Healthy Back Store and one other on your list (this one has prices that are just way beyond what I would could consider) to test all latex mattresses. So my only experience with a latex mattress being one at Healthy Back, is there any real way to know in advance how, say, an Ultimate Dreams or Brooklyn Bedding latex over foam mattress might feel and be like to sleep on? Actually, more generally, for any online equivalent? At least for all latex mattresses (which are at the outer range of what I can afford) I can at least try some at Healthy Back, unlike latex over foam hybrids. I guess this is at the heart of the long-standing dilemma and hesitancy to buy online without being able to try the mattress out first

Also, I don't fully understand this response: "All of this is part of each person's personal value equation and each person may have a different set of priorities which is why for one person a mattress that costs $3000 may be better value than a very similar mattress that uses similar materials and only costs $1500 but where the more costly mattress is a better "match" for all the criteria that are most important to them."

Can you give a specific scenario or scenarios where "a mattress that costs $3000 may be better value than a very similar mattress that uses similar materials and only costs $1500 but where the more costly mattress is a better "match" for all the criteria that are most important to them.?" If the quality (and therefore durability?) of 2 mattresses is basically similar, but one costs twice as much, what sort of personal priorities would make the much more expensive one of equal or better value than the cheaper one? You suggested a 20% or so premium for being able to actually try out a mattress, but what other factors could produce this equivalence?

Thanks again

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Need new mattress ASAP; would love feedback on hybrid latex and all latex online & local options 11 Dec 2013 14:06 #6

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Hi rand,

Thanks again for another comprehensive reply. I'm beginning to think that you are really a team of at least 3 people, given
all your responses and how prompt you usually are, and at seemingly all hours!


There are many days I wish I was 3 people ... or at least had 3 heads, 6 arms, and 30 fingers, ... but unfortunately I'm only one :)

Just to clarify my understanding of your last response - I plan to test the Healthy Back Bliss Essence today. If I find it comfortable
and meeting your PPP criteria (hoping I can get someone to go with me to observe spine, as otherwise, how could I really do this in side position),


Someone at the store should be able to help you check for alignment.

is there a way to know if the feel would be similar to the Ultimate Dreams or Brooklyn Bedding all latex mattresses? Do I need to ask Healthy Back to provide details on all the layers and their ILDs to know this?


A good retailer would be able and willing to provide you with the "quality specs" of a mattress which includes the type and density of any polyfoam or memory foam and the type and blend of the latex. The "comfort specs" may be a little more difficult to get however because they are not really relevant when you are testing a mattress locally (your body and testing can tell if it's a good match regardless of the ILD) so many retailers or manufacturers treat the ILD of the layers as proprietary information so that their mattresses can't be "duplicated" and because it has nothing to do with quality or value.

If you are able to find out the thickness and ILD of all the layers ... then you could use this as a way to "approximate" your choice with another mattress but this won't be exact and would require some guesswork because the same ILD and layer thickness, layer combinations, and cover and quilting may not be available in another mattress and every difference between two mattresses can have an effect on the feel and performance of the mattress which will also vary between different people. Every layer and component affects the response of every other layer to some degree. When you are approximating another mattress though ... the similarity of the upper layers will have a bigger effect on what you feel than the deeper layers so if you can only approximate some of the layers or are looking for an approximate reference point then top 3" to 5" or so would be the ones to focus on more. Heavier body types would probably notice the effect of deeper layers more than lighter body types which don't sink into the mattress and compress the deeper layers as much.

So far, I've not found any seller within reasonable driving distance to try latex over foam and only Healthy Back Store and one other on your list (this one has prices that are just way beyond what I would could consider) to test all latex mattresses. So my only experience with a latex mattress being one at Healthy Back, is there any real way to know in advance how, say, an Ultimate Dreams or Brooklyn Bedding latex over foam mattress might feel and be like to sleep on?


Outside of testing similar mattresses locally (which may not be available in a particular area) you would be reliant on more detailed conversations with the manufacturer and using their "averages" for other customers that were similar to you to decide on your initial choice. Once you have slept on a mattress then you can use your experience as a reference point for any further customization or layer exchanges so the exchange policy can be an important part of the purchase for some people. In other words ... an online purchase that has layer exchanges available can be a process rather than a single purchase where your initial purchase is a "best guess" based on averages and then your actual sleeping experience replaces your testing and is used to decide whether the initial choice is "close enough".

If there are some mattresses available locally but are outside of your price range then you can also use these to test various combinations which may give you some further reference points that you can use. It would be helpful if Healthy Back provided the thickness and ILD's of their layers but if there is a Pure Latex Bliss dealer near you then the ILD's of their mattresses are known (see post #2 here ).

In general though if you know the construction of an online mattress you are considering then you would need to call and talk with local manufacturers and retailers and ask them if they have a similar mattress available on their floor (for example you could call and say "I'm interested in trying some latex/polyfoam hybrids that have about 3" of Talalay in the top layer over a polyfoam base layer ... do you have anything that is similar to this that I could try?"). You could also call and tell them "I'm interested in testing some mattresses that have at least 3" of Talalay latex in the top layers ... do you have anything like this I could test?" I would then ask them if they provide the specs of their mattresses (layer thickness and type of latex and possibly even ILD although that wouldn't be a requirement in terms of knowing the quality of the mattress.

I guess this is at the heart of the long-standing dilemma and hesitancy to buy online without being able to try the mattress out first


This is the reason that an online purchase can be more risky and there are many people who are not comfortable ordering a mattress that they can't test online ... even with a good exchange policy. For someone that isn't comfortable with an online purchase then a higher price for a local purchase may be better value for them. The only way to know your level of comfort with any online purchase is with more detailed phone conversations with each online manufacturer or retailer you are considering. After these conversations you can more easily decide on your level of comfort with an online purchase.

Also, I don't fully understand this response: "All of this is part of each person's personal value equation and each person may have a different set of priorities which is why for one person a mattress that costs $3000 may be better value than a very similar mattress that uses similar materials and only costs $1500 but where the more costly mattress is a better "match" for all the criteria that are most important to them."

Can you give a specific scenario or scenarios where "a mattress that costs $3000 may be better value than a very similar mattress that uses similar materials and only costs $1500 but where the more costly mattress is a better "match" for all the criteria that are most important to them.?"


You can see some of the criteria that may be among the most important parts of each person's personal value equation here . The first priority of a mattress is always PPP and quality (so the PPP is maintained for a reasonable time and that a mattress doesn't lose its comfort and support in a few months or years).

So you could have a mattress that has for example a 1.5" layer of latex on the bottom, two 3" customizable layers of latex in the middle,and a 2" layer of soft latex on top (for a total of 9.5" of latex) with a very high quality cotton cover quilted with wool such as the GreenSleep Dolcezza here which retails for about $3298 in a queen. This mattress may test out "perfect" for someone in some configuration. This would be very similar to a mattress that also had three 3" layers of 100% natural Dunlop latex (for a total of 9") and also had a wool quilted cover such as the SleepEz mattress here which retails for $1995 and where the layers can also be customized.

There may be (and are) some people that would much rather buy the Dolcezza because even though it has about the same amount of 100% natural Dunlop latex (assuming you chose the Dunlop option for the SleepEz mattress) and a similar cover (although the Dolcezza has more wool and is more costly) ... they may go with the certainty of a mattress they have tested rather than take a chance on a mattress that they haven't and that may not be a good a "match" for them in terms of PPP even though the quality of the materials and the durability of the mattress would be very similar or the same and the SleepEz could be further customized with layer exchanges. It may even be true that both mattresses would end up being close equivalents in terms of PPP but one they would know that this was the case before a purchase and the other they wouldn't. They may also feel more comfortable with the ability to work with a local store vs an online manufacturer for reasons that were important to them. For this person ... buying the Dolcezza would be a better match for their personal value equation even though the online mattress would be better value from a commodity point of view. When you are buying a mattress you are really buying the quality of your sleep over a period of time and not just the materials in the mattress. In other words quality and PPP (which is a function of the design of the mattress) are two different things and while both are important ... PPP is the most important part of a mattress purchase.

Some people are also much less budget sensitive and put more value on dealing with a local retailer that they like or want to support and that provides the kind of personal service that is important to them and this may be more important to them than even a significant difference in the cost of two similar mattresses. For them ... who they buy from may be a more important part of their personal value equation than the cost differences between two "similar but different" mattresses.

For some people the "look" of the mattress may even be a very important consideration (even though it has no effect on PPP) and they may choose a mattress where how they feel "about" the mattress is just as important as how they feel "on" the mattress.

Your own uncertainty would be one example of why some people are willing to pay a significant premium for a mattress that they know before a purchase is a good match rather than take what they consider to be the risk of an online purchase. There is no right or wrong in any of this ... only the criteria that are most important to each person and your confidence that a mattress purchase will lead to the quality of sleep (as subjective or relative as that may be) you are looking for over a long enough period of time to justify the cost of the mattress.

Phoenix
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Last edit: by phoenix.
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