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He said, She said.... I need a neutral party to weigh in. 02 Nov 2014 21:01 #1

  • nap101
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I still like European Sleepworks for the comfort of the coils. It's still in the running.
I went this weekend to Nest, Urban Mattress, and Ergo Sleepworks, all in the Berkeley CA area.

Nest Bedding: Really liked the Swan. I'm into the softer feel lately. It comes in the zoned latex. That feels nice to me. The question I have is that it only comes in synthetic dunlop or organic. I'm not necessarily committed to organic, but would prefer natural to synthetic.
They say there is absolutely no difference in feel or durability between the two, only a huge difference in price. They only had the organic in the store to test out. So I have to take their word.

How do I tell the difference? Is there a way to tell if the latex in a mattress is synthetic or organic other than trusting the supplier to put the correct component into the mattress? I don't think they would do anything intentionally wrong, but if I ordered the higher quality ingredient, I would like a way to know that is what I got.

So I went to Urban Mattress. I looked at the Eco Scape, which is 100% talalay and it's not a blend. I liked it with the topper that is a latex wool blend. He agreed about the wearability between the synthetic and the natural being equal, but he said the zoned system will cause the latex to break down more quickly in certain areas. This is new information to me.

I have read many of the links to the differences between the synthetic and the natural you have posted as a response to other questions, just need a little clarity on the zoned issue, and how to know when I get a mattress if I'm getting what I think I'm getting.

The more I read the more confused I get.

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He said, She said.... I need a neutral party to weigh in. 02 Nov 2014 21:17 #2

  • phoenix
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Hi nap101,

They say there is absolutely no difference in feel or durability between the two, only a huge difference in price. They only had the organic in the store to test out. So I have to take their word.


There will certainly be a different in "feel" between the two. 100% natural Dunlop is a denser, more resilient, and more "supportive" material than synthetic Dunlop although the synthetic Dunlop is also a very durable material and wouldn't be a weak link in a mattress in terms of durability. They are definitely not the same.

How do I tell the difference? Is there a way to tell if the latex in a mattress is synthetic or organic other than trusting the supplier to put the correct component into the mattress? I don't think they would do anything intentionally wrong, but if I ordered the higher quality ingredient, I would like a way to know that is what I got.


In practical terms you would need to trust the integrity of the manufacturer or the store you are purchasing from. There are some differences in how they feel and you could tell by weight (synthetic Dunlop is less dense and lighter in the same firmness level than natural latex) and the continuous pour Dunlop from Mountaintop has a different pincore pattern from molded Dunlop but you would need to be familiar with each type to recognize the difference. Some Dunlop cores also have various identifying markings or stickers but whether these are part of any particular layer that was cut from the original core would depend on where the core was cut from. The law tag will identify the model of the mattress but basically, just like with any mattress purchase you make from any manufacturer at any store, you would need to trust that what a manufacturer says is in their mattress is what is really inside it.

So I went to Urban Mattress. I looked at the Eco Scape, which is 100% talalay and it's not a blend. I liked it with the topper that is a latex wool blend. He agreed about the wearability between the synthetic and the natural being equal, but he said the zoned system will cause the latex to break down more quickly in certain areas. This is new information to me.


This just sounds like "sales speak" to me and it's not something that I would be concerned about or that I've ever heard of being an issue. Softer materials will generally be a little less durable than the same material in firmer versions but zoning usually puts firmer materials under the heavier parts of the body (such as the hips/pelvis) which would break down the material faster so if anything it may improve durability compared to a layer that didn't have the firmer section although in real life I doubt that it would make a significant difference either way.

Phoenix
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He said, She said.... I need a neutral party to weigh in. 04 Nov 2014 19:36 #3

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thanks for your reply.

The zoning thing confuses me a bit because it sounds different than what you say in your post.
Here is a direct quote from the nest bedding site regarding zoning in their mattresses:
These correspond with the shape of your body, bigger holes in the shoulder and hip are, smaller holes in the lumbar and lighter parts of your body. This allows the latex to support the curves of your body and give you proper support. Regular latex is flat and doesn't give to the curves of your body.

I do like the feel of the mattress in the store, as my hips are a bit bigger than the rest of me, but is this something the mattress would do naturally over time? Is this a concern 10 years from now in that what feels great in the store would cause that part of the mattress to sink in even more to the point of being uncomfortable? Also, all the layers have the zone system. Not just one. And upon visiting the store the zoned holes are different on each side so if it is too soft or too hard you can flip that layer over.

I kind of know what I want but I'm not seeing it in any store as of yet. I know I like a medium to soft mattress. Every time there are more layers in a mattress it feels better to me--not sure if that is real or just psychological. I want natural latex but not obsessive about the organic part. The biggest issue in the testing at the stores is calculating the durability over time. I'm the type that will spend extra if I think it will delay having to go through this process again.

My budget is 2-3K for a queen. I did want to shop locally but am now willing to go online.

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He said, She said.... I need a neutral party to weigh in. 04 Nov 2014 19:59 #4

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Hi nap101,

The zoning thing confuses me a bit because it sounds different than what you say in your post.
Here is a direct quote from the nest bedding site regarding zoning in their mattresses:
These correspond with the shape of your body, bigger holes in the shoulder and hip are, smaller holes in the lumbar and lighter parts of your body. This allows the latex to support the curves of your body and give you proper support. Regular latex is flat and doesn't give to the curves of your body.


There are many different zoning patterns that you will find with different latex cores but you can see a picture here of a typical 7 zoned Mountaintop layer and it is firmer under the hips and softer under the shoulders. Bigger holes or more closely spaced holes or "pincores" would be the softer areas and the smaller or more closely spaced pincores would be the firmer areas. I don't know the specific zoning pattern of their organic Dunlop but it would also typically be firmer under the hips/pelvis and softer under the shoulders. All latex is very point elastic so it will contour to the curves of your body whether it is zoned or not.

There is more about zoning in this article and in post #11 here and post #2 here but your testing will tell you more than anything else whether any zoning pattern is a suitable "match" for you in terms of PPP.

I do like the feel of the mattress in the store, as my hips are a bit bigger than the rest of me, but is this something the mattress would do naturally over time? Is this a concern 10 years from now in that what feels great in the store would cause that part of the mattress to sink in even more to the point of being uncomfortable? Also, all the layers have the zone system. Not just one. And upon visiting the store the zoned holes are different on each side so if it is too soft or too hard you can flip that layer over.


I would make sure that you test for more than just the "showroom feel" of a mattress. The tutorial post has some guidelines that can help you test a mattress for Pressure relief and alignment. While all materials will soften over time ... latex is the most durable of all the foam materials and will soften and break down less and more slowly than other types of foam materials (such as polyfoam or memory foam). There is more about the many variables that can affect durability and the useful life of a mattress relative to each person in post #2 here and the posts it links to but overall durability isn't something that I would be particularly concerned about with any latex mattress that is a good match for you in terms of PPP as long as it isn't on the edge of being too soft for you (see post #2 here ).

A Dunlop latex core can be softer or firmer on each side but it's very unlikely that the zoning would be different on each side unless there are two layers glued together.

Phoenix
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Last edit: by phoenix.
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