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Mattresses in Victoria, BC 26 Oct 2011 23:01 #1

  • 3rd of Life
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The other day some friends of mine told me that they recently got a new mattress here in Victoria BC, and absolutely love it. They purchased an iComfort Revolution at SleepCountry Canada. This got me thinking about our own 12-14(?) yr old foam mattress, and that it might be time to replace it. It is a "Cloudrest" which I bought from a local foam place; it was a pretty high-end mattress in it's time, and has served us well. It is 8" thick, and sits on a 7" wooden box frame (which is covered in thin foam), and sits in an "Arts& Crafts" (aka "Mission") style solid oak bed frame.

After several hours of research on the internet, my head is spinning. I couldn't believe that there are forums just about mattresses!

Anyway, I am 140 lbs, side & stomach sleeper, and my wife is 115 lbs, and a side & back sleeper (if that means anything). Our bed is a Queen size. I don't think either one of us is a "hot sleeper".

I went to a local SleepCountry Canada and they only carry the Revolution and Insight in the iComfort line. (I guess that was a head-office decision on which ones to carry). The salesman I spoke to (who was very nice) also showed me some other mattresses, but the iComfort seemed to feel the best, although I know that the real acid-test is several nights sleeping on it.

The NovaForm from Costco is very tempting at $549.00 over the $1800 for the Revolution, and I'm really curious to know the "real truth" about the difference(s) in material & construction quality.

I also got excited about the "Keetsa", but it's only available in Toronto, so even though the shipping is free, that would mean buying it sight-unseen, and now I learn that they are made in China and the whole "Green" facade is just a "greenwash".

One thing that I'm wondering about too is: The iC Revolution and the NovaForm are both 12" in depth, and the iC Insight is 9", so if we get the Insight, we can plop it on top of our existing box and still be at about the same height, but if we get one of the 12" deep mattresses, we need to either place it on the box and be 4" higher than we are now, or omit the box and wind-up 3" lower than present. Gah! With a 12" I guess I could also omit the box frame and unscrew, raise & relocate higher the wooden supports on the bed as an option as well, in order to have it be at the present, desired height.

Heat: One real fear I have is the memory foam being much hotter than our old foam mattress in the summer. I suspect that it would be hotter, but how much? I don't have room to store the old foam mattress as a back-up.

Off gassing: This is a very real concern, and should be to everyone. Off gassing of these products is very unhealthy, but won't manifest itself until years later in the form of cancer. Wild statement? No, the VOCs (volitile organic compounds) are known carcinogens. Environment Canada considers them toxins. I'm not sure if the fire-retardant PBDE chemicals are still used in mattress construction or not. Still, not good to be breathing in those chemicals for 8 hours each day.


I just want to make the best bang-for-the-buck choice, and would appreciate any input. Perhaps our existing foamy still has some years left in it. *shrug*

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Last edit: by 3rd of Life. Reason: typo

Re: Torn 27 Oct 2011 02:33 #2

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Hi 3rd of Life,

I like your thread title but I hope you don't mind that I changed it to help others in Victoria to find it :)

It's kind of nice to have a post from there because I grew up and spent a lot of my life there and I still think its one of the most beautiful cities in Canada ... or even North America!

In any case ... now that I've enjoyed my nostalgia ...

As you may know from the long iComfort thread on the forum (the first dozen or so posts in particular) and a few others ... I am not a fan of the iComfort mattresses both because of the low density foams they use above the gel memory foam and because they are way overpriced IMO. This is also why I also would never recommend a mattress from a major manufacturer or chain store because in almost all cases because if you look at the actual materials they use in their mattresses ... they are either low quality foams which will soon break down or in those rare cases where they do use better quality materials ... they charge way more than they are worth compared to other higher quality and better value oriented options. I also talked about the Novaform in the iComfort thread and it uses a lower quality/density of gel foam than the Serta (it's 4 lb and the Serta is 5 lb) but I also don't believe its the best value in a budget memory foam mattress.

Side sleepers typically need a comfort layer of around 3" and if they are lighter as you are ... then softer foam on top is a good idea for pressure relief. Back sleepers need a thinner comfort layer and stomach sleepers typically need the thinnest firmest comfort layer of all as there is a tendency with stomach sleeping for the hips to sink in too far and the resulting hammocking can lead to back issues. Combination sleepers would typically use the thinnest firmest comfort layer that relieves pressure on their side to help with the alignment when sleeping on their stomach. Zoning with a firmer middle third of the comfort layer and/or support layer will also help with alignment for combination sleeping.

Memory foam ... particularly with stomach sleeping or with thicker layers (as in most of the iComfort models) ... is usually not a great idea as it lends itself to sinking in too far as it heats up with your body temperature over the course of the night. Unless you are looking at a very low budget mattress ... polyfoam in the comfort layers of a mattress are also not a good idea in any amount over 1" unless you are buying it from a manufacturer or outlet who knows their foam and is using much higher quality polyfoam than is normally used in mattress comfort layers and the price reflects is use (and lower cost). Even then it should be significantly less than either memory foam or latex. Latex is by far the highest quality foam that can be used in a mattress. Here is some information about some of the pros and cons of latex and memory foam . Some information about the different materials used in mattresses can be found here (comfort layers) and here (support cores) . Some guidelines that should help avoid most of the traps of mattress shopping can be found in post #6 in this thread .

Victoria doesn't have all that many good high quality and value places for mattresses but there is also some excellent value up island and in Vancouver for those who want more choices. Some of your options include ...

In Victoria

fawcettmfg.com/ Victoria, BC. They are a new manufacturer that is just launching their like but I have talked with Dwayne here and he is very knowledgeable and has decades of experience in the industry including in manufacturing. They make Talalay latex and latex/pocket coil hybrids (they can make other types of mattresses on request) and even use horsehair and tufting in some of their mattresses and are focused on using natural materials. They also make marine mattresses. They would certainly make a high quality choice and would be well worth including in your research.

mcgeachiesfoam.ca/ Victoria, BC. I've talked with the owner here and was very impressed. They make a wide range of all foam mattresses using 2.0, 2.5, and 3 lb polyfoam, Dunlop and Talalay latex in various ILD's, and 5 lb memory foam. They can custom layer in any way their customers prefer (including memory foam latex combinations) and have a choice of covers. Very knowledgeable about different foams, open and transparent, and has some good quality and value options. This is certainly one of the better Victoria options.

www.trianglehealingproducts.com/ Victoria, BC. Carry Evereden latex mattresses which use a high quality 100% natural Dunlop latex core and 100% natural Talalay latex comfort layers but they are somewhat high in price. They have both Talalay and Dunlop comfort layers on the floor so you can test the feel of both.

www.foamzone.ca/ Carry a 6" Dunlop latex mattress and memory foam mattresses. It would be nice if they could add a couple of inches of latex on top of this for a comfort layer for those who prefer it but it looks like they only offer the basic 6" core but I would call to confirm this because there are often options available that may not be listed on a site.

www.goodplanet.com/natural-mattresses-and-accessories/natural-mattresses-and-beds/ Carries Sleeptek latex mattresses which are high quality Dunlop latex mattress that can be customized with different layering options. They are also in a more premium price range so I would make some careful value comparisons.

www.pinetree-furniture.com/mattresses.html Victoria, BC. Restonic innerspring and Renelle latex and memory foam mattresses. They also told me that he would provide all the information about the quality of the materials in their mattresses as well.

realdealbedroomsandmore.ca/wordpress/mattresses/ Victoria, BC. They carry Restonic, Easy Rest, and Eclipse and when I talked with them they told me they would provide foam density information about their mattresses.

www.casualhome.ca/content/home Victoria, BC. They carry Sproutsleep mattresses which are a line of high quality latex and latex/pocket coil mattresses with tufted natural fibers. Call first to find out which ones they have available on their floor.

www.heirloomlinens.com/Default.aspx Victoria, BC. They carry Snugsleep component latex mattresses but they only have a single sample on the floor for testing and don't carry all the combinations.


Up island there is some good value as well

www.foamguy.ca/ Nanaimo, BC. Has some great value in mattresses. He is selling latex and memory foam mattresses at exceptionally good prices and is using very high quality foam. They may also be worth a visit even though it means a drive over the malahat. His prices are better than many sources in the US.

johnsbedrooms.com/ Nanaimo, Courtenay, BC. Another one that carries both latex and memory foam mattresses in Nanaimo. I like the design of the Pacific mattresses. Also uses A-Z foam as their supplier.

www.westcoastfoam.com/index.php Parksville, BC. Another great foam shop up-island which has great value and specializes in talalay latex.

parksvillemattress.com/ (M&N Mattress Shop). Parksville. They carry Savvy Rest (component latex mattresses) along with Ironman mattresses, Kingsdown, and Restwell mattresses. They are knowledgeable about mattress materials and told me that they would find out any information that their customers need to know about the type and quality/density of the materials in their mattresses.

resthouse.ca/ Duncan, BC. Carries Savvy Rest mattresses which are high quality latex mattresses (including component mattresses) but are also in more premium price ranges.

www.meritduncan.ca/ Duncan, BC. Carries Renelle, Savvy Rest, Ironman, Natura, and Restonic mattresses so there are some good possibilities here.

There are also some independent factory direct mattress manufacturers in Vancouver which offer great value if you're in the mood for a ferry trip :). They are in this thread .

Your concerns about heat and offgassing are very valid and I think are dealt with in some of the links in this reply. If you do choose some of the better quality and value mattresses in the outlets I listed ... it should also alleviate the height concerns since they are all thinner than the Revolution and closer to the Insight (although much better quality and materials).

It would be great to have the same value available in Victoria that there is up island or in Vancouver but unfortunately I don't know of anything that compares. I would certainly make a few calls first to talk with some of them and then probably take the drive if I was in your shoes.

Good luck and feel free to post if you have any other questions.

Phoenix
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Last edit: by phoenix.

Re: Torn 27 Oct 2011 03:40 #3

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Thanks for yet another thorough reply.

A trip to Vancouver is just too costly, but the Foam Guy in Nanaimo looks interesting. What comments would you have of the following three :

- Broadway Nights

- The Bently

- Talalay Deluxe (Latex)

I don't mind springing for the most expensive of their selection, as I was prepared to go with the more expensive iComfort Revolution.





On a side note, I have a conspiracy theory/hypothesis about how some people receive new mattresses that smell very strongly, and yet others who don't:

Given the enormous numbers of newly purchased mattresses that get returned (for myriad reasons), is it not possible that those who receive "new" mattreses which emit no odour, are receiving mattresses which were returned, repackaged & re-sold? The returned mattress had it's opportunity to off-gas with the first owner.

Hmmmm

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Last edit: by 3rd of Life.

Re: Torn 27 Oct 2011 04:31 #4

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Hi 3rd of life,

If you go to Nanaimo ... I'd also make sure to visit West Coast Foam as well. I talked with Marvin the owner there some time ago and their value was comparable to the Foam Guy even though they don't have specific models and prices on site (and pricing has probably increased since then as there have been several price increases in talalay this year). I was rather amazed to see two outlets on the island with value that was that good.

I like all three of the mattresses you mentioned. Aerus is my favorite memory foam in its 5 lb version as it is highly breathable and is good quality. The Activus is a true HR polyfoam (the highest quality) which you rarely see in mattresses because it is more expensive than other polyfoams. High quality latex like talalay or natural Dunlop are the highest quality materials of all. So all of these mattresses are using great materials.

In my own mattress testing ... I did like the feel of latex over a thinner layer of memory foam over latex (or in the case of the Bentley ... HR foam. I would certainly give serious consideration to this as it also has firmer latex on the top which would be quite firm but "modified" by the memory foam underneath it.

The Broadway nights would be my last choice as I much prefer to sleep on latex rather than memory foam but having said that ... since it has only 2" of high quality and breathable memory foam, it would also be very suitable for combination sleeping if it was pressure relieving enough for you.

My own likely choice would be the Talalay Deluxe and this too with only 2" of latex over a firmer core would also be very suitable as long as the prressure relief was good on your sides.

It seems to me that all of these would make good choices and I would choose based on how well each of them relieved pressure on your sides ... how well they kept you in alignment in all your sleeping positions ... and if they all did well in both of these areas ... I would make my choice based on subjective feel.

As to your "conspiracy theory" :) ... the biggest difference in offgassing is usually in the different formulations of foam or in the case of the same formula ... it would often be in how long the foam was cured after it was poured and how long it was wrapped in plastic. Sometimes even the same foam has offgassing variations as the polyfoam or memory foam formulation is often changed as temperature and humidity changes over the course of a day or different times of the year to get the same "final result". There are no reputable manufacturers who re-sell used or returned mattresses as in many cases it would be against the law and since most of them have been in business a long time ... the risk would be too great even if their ethics allowed it.

In many cases though ... returned mattresses that are not donated to a good cause are sold at liquidation auctions and less reputable dealers will sell them in certain states that allow this. They will not be an "authorized dealer" and there will usually be no warranty. They will often advertise them as "excess stock" or "shipment damaged" and would rarely if ever admit what they really were. In the days of "just in time" supply chains ... excess stock in any quantity rarely happens.

So all in all, I think that the outgassing has more to do with differing foam formulations and different lengths of time between foam manufacturing, time in plastic, time in transit and storage, and a final purchase by a consumer. Overall though ... like you I'm not a fan of outgassing even in its most benign form and while there have certainly been improvements (such as the banning of certain chemicals like PBDE and others) and reductions in various others (like the trend towards MDI from TDI and the reduction of aldehydes) and greener polyols (that are plant based), more awareness of foam testing (like CertiPur, OekoTex and others) and a greater overall awareness of better and more natural fire retardant methods ... there is still a long way to go.

Phoenix
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Last edit: by phoenix.

Re: Torn 27 Oct 2011 15:10 #5

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Hi 3rd of life,

I just made a few phone calls to find out what the 3 foam shops in Victoria had to offer and McGeachies has a 6" Dunlop core (Latex Green which is high quality Dunlop) and can put a topper on top using either Dunlop or Talalay latex. They currently don't have the talalay but said they would order it and have it in within the week so people can compare it to the Dunlop comfort layer. They can also use various layers of memory foam and latex in a comfort layer and can set up the layers for you to test and then would order the mattress according to what you liked. Using a topper on top of a core (as opposed to having all the layers glued together in a complete mattress) has the advantage of being able to flip the mattress. His memory foam comes from Dom foam which is Certi-Pur certified and is 5 lb density (although I personally would go with latex for its durability and feel).

Their prices are better than the other two foam shop options in Victoria and the guy I talked with ... Mike ... was very helpful and knowledgeable. As a reference, the 6" Dunlop core is currently $1000 and a 2" topper (either talalay or dunlop) is an additional $350 and then of course tax on top of that. They use a bamboo blend ticking. I would probably take a trip to the Western Communities before taking a trip up island as the value there is also good. The biggest difference is that he doesn't carry a talalay latex core even though he could probably order it.

The other two foam shops only offer Dunlop and their pricing is higher.

Phoenix
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Last edit: by phoenix.

Re: Torn 27 Oct 2011 17:12 #6

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Hi 3rd of life,

Thompsons returned my call and filled in some of the gaps.

Their latex is Talalay (no Dunlop) and is available in 4 degrees of firmness/softness. Their core is $1200 and they can add a 2" topper for another $400 laminated inside the same ticking or for another $100 it can be a separate topper (which again would give you the chance to flip it. I have to say the lady I was talking to was very helpful and informative and my call was a much better experience than other dealings I've had with them. They also offer memory foam which they make in house and they use a 5.2 lb memory foam which can either go over latex or polyfoam. They use a 2.0 lb polyfoam and have an option for a 2.5 lb polyfoam (higher quality) for the support core.

She also remembered the specs for the cloudrest which was made from 2.5 lb polyfoam. Some versions used a very firm 2.0 lb polyfoam on the edges for sitting support and some didn't. The convolute was also 2.5 lb polyfoam. This would explain why it was still OK because in this density polyfoam will last much longer than the typical polyfoam that is being used in most "commercial" mattresses today. It would be getting close to the end of its life after 10 or 12 years though.

Hope this helps and you do seem to have some reasonable choices in Victoria although up island is still better.

Phoenix
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Re: Torn 27 Oct 2011 20:43 #7

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Rats! I got very interested in the products from "The Foam Guy" in Nanaimo, but I would then have to drive up there again to pick it up when it came in, so that's 8 hours of driving and two wasted days all together. Nah. (No free shipping is available).

So I think I'll attempt to find something locally.

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Re: Torn 27 Oct 2011 22:05 #8

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FWIW ...

West Coast Foam in Parksville has a 9" all Talalay for under $1500 and an 8" for under $1400 and would ship to Victoria for about $40 ... just to make your choices more difficult :).

Phoenix
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Re: Torn 27 Oct 2011 23:10 #9

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Just when my head had stopped spinning! Damn you....damn you all to Hell....



LOL


Seriously though, thanks for that.

:lol:

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Last edit: by 3rd of Life.

Re: Torn 28 Oct 2011 20:18 #10

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Geesh, who would have thought that a mattress purchase would be so complicated? (Ha)

The gentleman at "The Foam Guy" in Nanaimo phoned back yesterday and said that he spoke to the owner, and they could offer a free delivery if I chose not to take the "two free pillows with mattress purchase" special they have on right now. I would still need to drive up there (4 hrs total, return) to see & try them, but it might be worth it.

I went to "The Foam Zone" today in Victoria; they have just recently re-located, and aren't fully set up yet in their new location. I was able to lay on a 6" latex ("Natura"?) and it felt pretty nice. I unzipped the cover a little to see the holes that go right through. I was told that the main reason they did this was to make them less heavy. Any subsequent cooling effect is just a bonus. A queen is $1000.00, and one can flip these over every once in a while and use the other side.

I'm wondering if those three I was considering from The Foam Guy in Nanaimo are better choices?

He also suggested that our existing 2.5 lb foam mattress ("Cloudrest") with integral egg-carton toppers could very well have a good number of years' service left. But by-guppy, I'm now on a mission! LOL


Head spinning sequence...........re-activated.

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