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How are layers attached to one another in a latex mattress? 05 Jul 2014 16:32 #1

  • chiron
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My wife and I are in the market for a new mattress (a California King to replace our Double). We started at Jordan's in Natick, MA, where we liked the Tempurpedic Cloud, but really loved the Pranasleep Asana Plush. My wife was ready to pull the trigger, despite the high sticker price, but I wanted to do a little more research, which is how I came across this site. Some quick reading had me reconsidering the Pranasleep: advertised as a "latex" mattress, if I read the specs on Jordan's website correctly, it has only 2" of Latex, and nearly 3" of poly foam in the quilting layer. Now I'm looking for an all-latex mattress.

This afternoon I dragged my wife to The Mattress Maker in Brockton, MA and we both left very impressed. They said they could make a 100% natural Talalay latex mattress for roughly half the cost of the Pranasleep at Jordan's, which was a good start. We tried a couple mattresses, but they didn't have a mattress in their showroom that was as soft was we wanted. They suggested that we come back next Saturday, and they would have a mattress made for us based on today's visit, but only partially assembled so that we can test and swap out layers until we were happy with the mattress. So, we plan to go back there next weekend.

The mattress they are going to start with is 6" 32 ILD support core with 2" 28 ILD on one side and 2" 36 ILD on the other side (so we could compare softer and firmer). I'm not sure why the 36 ILD, as I'm pretty sure that will be too firm, but we haven't committed to anything, and it sounds like we will have a lot of flexibility to adjust next weekend.

Based on your reviews, I'm also hoping to visit Spindle Mattress, but I only learned about them yesterday, and they were closed on Saturday. I'm going to see if I can get an appointment some time this week, as it is hard for me to miss work, and they are only open 9-5 Monday to Thursday. I'd like to have the comparison, just to know my options.

My main question concerns what seems to be one of the biggest differences to me between The Mattress Maker and Spindle Mattress. Spindle Mattress sells their mattress unassembled. This actually appeals to me, as it seems that if one layer breaks down, or is too soft or firm, we can swap it out without replacing the entire mattress. From what I can tell, The Mattress Maker sells their mattresses stiched up nicely into a cover and semi-perminently assembled (although they do have a comfort guarantee, and said they will adjust the mattress to our liking after delivery for a reasonable fee).

Are the layers in a latex mattress attached to one another somehow (glue, stiching, etc) or are they only held together by the outer cover of the mattress? Is there any risk of the layers shifting or any problems associated with the "self-assembled" mattress from Spindle? Is there any major benefits to having the mattress come nicely packaged and assembled (aside from not having to assemble it myself)?

Another question I had is about double-sided mattresses:

The guy at The Mattress Maker seemed keen on a double-sided mattress, but if I understood him correctly it was not for the normal reason (flip it over every couple months). He suggested softer on one side and firmer on the other side, so that if our preference changed in a few years we could just flip it over. This sounds a little odd to me, as it seems like we would be paying for a layer of latex that is not going to have a dramatic effect on the comfort of the mattress, and we may never use. I'm also wondering if a layer of latex on the bottom of the mattress that is softer than the support core would break down faster, making it possible that it will not be comfortable even if we did decide we wanted to flip the mattress over in a few years. I would rather move the 2" of latex to the top of the mattress to serve as a middle transition layer. Am I missing something? Is it common to prefer a soft mattress when you are young (we are both in our early 30's) and then a firmer mattress as you get older?

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How are layers attached to one another in a latex mattress? 05 Jul 2014 18:48 #2

  • phoenix
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Hi chiron,

Some quick reading had me reconsidering the Pranasleep: advertised as a "latex" mattress, if I read the specs on Jordan's website correctly, it has only 2" of Latex, and nearly 3" of poly foam in the quilting layer. Now I'm looking for an all-latex mattress.


You did read the specs correctly yes. The latex and the Everlast foam (which is a polyfoam with latex like properties) are both high quality materials and the top 3/4" of polyfoam in the quilting is also a high quality material but the 2" of 1.5 lb polyfoam in the quilting layers are "on the edge" of what I would be comfortable with in a mattress in this price range (see the guidelines in post #4 here ).

This afternoon I dragged my wife to The Mattress Maker in Brockton, MA and we both left very impressed. They said they could make a 100% natural Talalay latex mattress for roughly half the cost of the Pranasleep at Jordan's, which was a good start. We tried a couple mattresses, but they didn't have a mattress in their showroom that was as soft was we wanted. They suggested that we come back next Saturday, and they would have a mattress made for us based on today's visit, but only partially assembled so that we can test and swap out layers until we were happy with the mattress. So, we plan to go back there next weekend.


This certainly sounds promising.

Based on your reviews, I'm also hoping to visit Spindle Mattress, but I only learned about them yesterday, and they were closed on Saturday. I'm going to see if I can get an appointment some time this week, as it is hard for me to miss work, and they are only open 9-5 Monday to Thursday. I'd like to have the comparison, just to know my options.


They may be able to make an appointment with you after their regular hours. As you know I think highly of them and they would be well worth a visit.

My main question concerns what seems to be one of the biggest differences to me between The Mattress Maker and Spindle Mattress. Spindle Mattress sells their mattress unassembled. This actually appeals to me, as it seems that if one layer breaks down, or is too soft or firm, we can swap it out without replacing the entire mattress. From what I can tell, The Mattress Maker sells their mattresses stiched up nicely into a cover and semi-perminently assembled (although they do have a comfort guarantee, and said they will adjust the mattress to our liking after delivery for a reasonable fee).

Are the layers in a latex mattress attached to one another somehow (glue, stiching, etc) or are they only held together by the outer cover of the mattress? Is there any risk of the layers shifting or any problems associated with the "self-assembled" mattress from Spindle? Is there any major benefits to having the mattress come nicely packaged and assembled (aside from not having to assemble it myself)?


You can see some of the pros and cons of loose layers inside a zip cover and glued layers inside a tape edged cover in post #2 here and the post it links to.

Another question I had is about double-sided mattresses:

The guy at The Mattress Maker seemed keen on a double-sided mattress, but if I understood him correctly it was not for the normal reason (flip it over every couple months). He suggested softer on one side and firmer on the other side, so that if our preference changed in a few years we could just flip it over. This sounds a little odd to me, as it seems like we would be paying for a layer of latex that is not going to have a dramatic effect on the comfort of the mattress, and we may never use. I'm also wondering if a layer of latex on the bottom of the mattress that is softer than the support core would break down faster, making it possible that it will not be comfortable even if we did decide we wanted to flip the mattress over in a few years. I would rather move the 2" of latex to the top of the mattress to serve as a middle transition layer. Am I missing something? Is it common to prefer a soft mattress when you are young (we are both in our early 30's) and then a firmer mattress as you get older?


You can read more about the pros and cons of a two sided mattress in post #3 here and the posts it links to. More people would tend to prefer softer comfort layers as they get older but of course there are no rules and each person is unique.

The weak link of a mattress is usually in the upper layers and not in the deeper layers in the mattress where the compression is more spread out and even so while the softer layer on the bottom may be a little less durable "in theory" ... it wouldn't be an issue in most cases in "real life". With a dual comfort two sided mattress with a different comfort layer on each side you would lose much of the benefits of a two sided mattress because most people would only sleep on the side that they preferred but it does provide the option of sleeping on a different firmness level on occasion if circumstances, injury, or illness indicates that a change in firmness would be a good idea. It also has the benefit that you can order two twin XL mattresses which fit together to make a king size where each half of a couple can have a different comfort level (with each twin size having a different firmness on top) and the top surface would be exactly the same height. This would be similar to split layers that are often seen in component latex mattresses.

You are looking at some good options from the Boston list :)

Phoenix
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How are layers attached to one another in a latex mattress? 05 Jul 2014 20:57 #3

  • chiron
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Thanks for pointing me towards those other posts about two-sided mattresses and the benefits of finished vs. zipped-shut mattresses.

When I am there next weekend I will check with The Mattress Maker to find out how they finish their mattresses, and what is involved in swapping comfort layers either in the short term (just in case we don't like the mattress once we get it home), or the long term (if the top layer breaks down or our preferences change after several years).

To summarize my take-home message from the other posts you linked to:
If The Mattress Maker can make a two-sided mattress that satisfies my wife and my needs in terms of PPP, then the increased life due to being able to flip the mattress over would likely outweigh the inability to swap out layers without bringing the mattress back to the factory.
However, if a thicker comfort layer is necessary in order to satisfy our needs, then a one-sided mattress is likely better/necessary, in which case having it in a zip cover might be a good idea because we can swap the top layer if necessary down the line.

I'll be honest, although I'm pretty sure our current mattress is two-sided, I don't think we've ever flipped (except by accident when we moved). However, our current mattress was a cheap one my wife purchased while in grad. school. Based on how much I'm spending on this mattress, if I end up with a two-sided mattress, it will go into my calendar to religiously flip it every 3 months (or whatever the manufacturer recommends).

Thanks for the advice. I'll make sure to report back on how our next visit to The Mattress Maker (and hopefully Spindle Mattress) goes.

- Ben

PS: When I mentioned The Mattress Underground to the people at The Mattress Maker, they said I was the third person in a week to mention the website, which sounded like a good thing in their book. One of the people I spoke to (I forget his name) also mentioned he had talked to you in the past. I wonder whether anyone at The Mattress Maker will read my post here before I see them next weekend.

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How are layers attached to one another in a latex mattress? 05 Jul 2014 22:30 #4

  • phoenix
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Hi chiron,

To summarize my take-home message from the other posts you linked to:
If The Mattress Maker can make a two-sided mattress that satisfies my wife and my needs in terms of PPP, then the increased life due to being able to flip the mattress over would likely outweigh the inability to swap out layers without bringing the mattress back to the factory.
However, if a thicker comfort layer is necessary in order to satisfy our needs, then a one-sided mattress is likely better/necessary, in which case having it in a zip cover might be a good idea because we can swap the top layer if necessary down the line.


I think that's a reasonable synopsis.

Thanks for the advice. I'll make sure to report back on how our next visit to The Mattress Maker (and hopefully Spindle Mattress) goes.


I'm looking forward to your feedback after your visit(s).

PS: When I mentioned The Mattress Underground to the people at The Mattress Maker, they said I was the third person in a week to mention the website, which sounded like a good thing in their book. One of the people I spoke to (I forget his name) also mentioned he had talked to you in the past. I wonder whether anyone at The Mattress Maker will read my post here before I see them next weekend.


It's always good to see that the site is having an effect ... thanks for sharing their comments :)

Phoenix
Researching for a mattress?... Be sure to read The Mattress Shopping Tutorial.
Click here for TMU Discount Codes if purchasing from Our Trusted Members.
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