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I wish someone could point me in the right direction! 25 Feb 2015 06:49 #1

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We have had our 21st Century Ultimate Visco Pillowtop Englander for 11 years. It was an innerspring with a very thicktufted memory foam pillowtop built in. I think to top is primarily made of memory foam (Visco). It has started to sag but up t this point had been a great mattress. We both love the softness "sink in" feel and what seems to be very high quality. Unfornately the Englander plant in Rome GA has shutdown and finding something comparable in the Englander now seems unlikely. So the mattress hunt begins. Before finding this website we went to Mattress Firm. The mattress we really liked was was the Stearns & Foster Emelie Rose. Similar to what we have now. After doing a little research and finding this site I realize that people consider it junk in terms of construction (not sure in detail why but several posters have said that). So I spend about 3 hours reading what I should be looking for and now I am educated. I see a list of recommended stores in Atlanta and head back out with my wife. First stop, "The Original Mattress Factor". I mean it met that local/regional criteria and was suggested. But when I look at the materials based on this site I feel like I am back to junk! The latex mattress they had "Serenity" had 5"s of 2.75 lb poly foam surrounded by latex. The only positive is that you can flip it but this does seem to break the rules of this site in terms of the core. All the memory foams were similiar and the innersprings only had low grade poly foam in them.

After visiting 3 more stores I realize that although this website is very informative in defining the needle, it does little to help me identify where in the haystack to look. That being said I am hoping someone can help me identify a particular bed to check out that might fit our needs.

We apparently like a very soft (sink in bed). We seem to like a bed with innersprings with a soft memory foam pillowtop versus an all Memory Foam or Latex bed as those seem too firm for us. We are not "hot sleepers". My wife is a side sleeper around 120 lbs and I a stomach sleeper 170 lbs so I don't think we need a ton of support. In general. The all latex and memory foam mattresses seem to be too firm for us.

Is there a quality built mattress out their that might fit our needs that we can go check out. Our budget it up to $3,000 for a King (Would love to spend less though but I just want value for the money).

Thanks

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Last edit: by srockrae.

I wish someone could point me in the right direction! 25 Feb 2015 09:15 #2

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Hi srockrae,

First stop, "The Original Mattress Factor". I mean it met that local/regional criteria and was suggested. But when I look at the materials based on this site I feel like I am back to junk! The latex mattress they had "Serenity" had 5"s of 2.75 lb poly foam surrounded by latex. The only positive is that you can flip it but this does seem to break the rules of this site in terms of the core. All the memory foams were similiar and the innersprings only had low grade poly foam in them.


I'm not sure what information you've been reading on the site that somehow suggested that they were "junk" but Original Mattress Factory makes some very good quality and value mattresses. There is more about the OMF Serenity Latex in post #4 here and post #8 here and the posts they link to. If you compare the materials to the guidelines here you will see that it uses very high quality and durable materials and there are no weak links in the mattress. The same would be true for their Serenity memory foam mattresses and their two sided innerspring mattresses are also good quality/value choices in their budget range as well.

After visiting 3 more stores I realize that although this website is very informative in defining the needle, it does little to help me identify where in the haystack to look. That being said I am hoping someone can help me identify a particular bed to check out that might fit our needs.



Unfortunately only you can feel what you feel on a mattress and there are too many unknowns, variables, and personal preferences involved for anyone to be able to make specific recommendations or suggest a specific mattress or combination of layers or materials based on specs (either yours or a mattress), health conditions, individual circumstances, or "theory at a distance" (see mattress firmness/comfort levels in post #2 here ).

If you follow the 5 steps and the guidelines in the mattress shopping tutorial one at a time you will quickly narrow down your choices to the better ones and eliminate over 90% of the mattresses in the industry (and probably more) so you can focus your time and efforts on the better possibilities that are the most suitable, the most durable, and the best "value" for you based on all the criteria that are most important to you.

Two of the more important links in the tutorial that I would especially make sure you've read are post #2 here which has more about the different ways to buy a suitable mattress that is the best "match" for you in terms of PPP (Posture and alignment, Pressure relief, and Personal preferences) that can help you assess and minimize the risks involved in each of them and post #13 here which has more about the most important parts of the "value" of a mattress purchase which can help you make more meaningful comparisons between mattresses in terms of suitability, durability, and value.

The best "shortcut" is to use the knowledge that you have gained from reading the tutorial to help you identify the most knowledgeable and transparent retailers and manufacturers in your area that carry the types of mattresses that you are interested in testing and that already know what you would otherwise need to learn. Some preliminary phone calls to the retailers and manufacturers on the list to make sure that they are transparent about their mattresses and to confirm that they have some mattresses on their floor that you are interested in testing can also help you save a great deal of time. Who you deal with can be one of the most important parts of a successful mattress purchase.

The all latex and memory foam mattresses seem to be too firm for us.


Both latex mattresses and memory foam mattresses come in a very wide range of firmness levels from very firm to very soft so if you are interested in either memory foam or latex mattresses it would be a matter of testing softer versions of each type of mattress.

Is there a quality built mattress out their that might fit our needs that we can go check out. Our budget it up to $3,000 for a King (Would love to spend less though but I just want value for the money).


For most people there will be a range of mattresses that would all be suitable, durable, and "good value" choices and there would be more than "one needle" and with the information here you would have a much smaller haystack where most of the hay has been removed.

Phoenix
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Last edit: by phoenix.

I wish someone could point me in the right direction! 27 Feb 2015 15:38 #3

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I think I let my frustration and general lack of patience cloud my thinking. I was thinking that 5"s of poly between the latex layers was a quality issue but I understand now that the density was acceptable based on your guidelines. Sorry about venting. That being said I have kept reading and have been on many field trips and have found a bed we love but cannot afford so I would like to duplicate it as close a possible. The bed is the Pure LatexBliss Renew. I cannot find reliably sourced specifications but have gathered some info from retailer sites as follows:

Pure LatexBliss Renew
- Organic Cotton Cover
- Wool Fiber Barrier
- 3" All Natural, Ultra Plush Talalay Latex
- 3" All Natural, Medium Talalay Latex
- 6" All Natural, Extra Firm Talalay Latex support core

On another website I saw the following description:

"The core is 6" thick of 36 ILD all-natural Talalay latex core. For comfort, a 3" piece of 24 ILD premium all-natural medium talalay latex is placed upon the latex core. On top of this is placed another 3" layer of 14 ILD all-natural premium talalay latex, this layer being medium-plush. There is no polyurethane foam in this mattress - its 100% premium all-natural talalay latex."

The best effort to duplicate so far is

- Bamboo cover
- 3" ILD 19 Natural
- 3" ILD 19 Natural
- 6" Medium Core

I noticed a significant plushness difference between the Renew and the Beauty models which the salesperson attributed mainly to the wool fireproofing on the Renew versus a chemical based fireproofing on the Beauty.

Lastly on top of the Renew we tried the OMI (Organicpedic) 3" Wooly topper. Lets just say we are in love with the end result and felt like we were on Cloud 9. The 3" Wooly is $895 but it really felt great.

My questions are as follows:

1) Are there any more specifications in terms of the ILD for the Renew out there that may be more reliable?
2) Is my attempt to do my own build the closest I am going to get? Any suggestions or changes? If the 14 ILD on top is reliable, would the 19 be very noticeable?
3) I currently have all natural Talalay for my build as the Renew was 100% natural also. I can save about $300 going blended but am wondering if any of the responsiveness or plush feel could be affected if I go with a blended 40% Natural / 60% Synthetic?
4) What is the level of noticeable difference do you think I am taking in doing my own build? (P.S. It saves me about 60%)
5) I have read about the risk of the wool being matted down over time but WOW we really liked the feel. It would be great if there was a more competitively priced 3" wool topper tout there. Any suggestions?


Thanks again and sorry again for my initial frustration in the process.

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Last edit: by phoenix. Reason: "Organicpedic" added for search

I wish someone could point me in the right direction! 27 Feb 2015 16:32 #4

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Hi Srockrae,

I cannot find reliably sourced specifications but have gathered some info from retailer sites as follows:

Pure LatexBliss Renew
- Organic Cotton Cover
- Wool Fiber Barrier
- 3" All Natural, Ultra Plush Talalay Latex
- 3" All Natural, Medium Talalay Latex
- 6" All Natural, Extra Firm Talalay Latex support core

On another website I saw the following description:

"The core is 6" thick of 36 ILD all-natural Talalay latex core. For comfort, a 3" piece of 24 ILD premium all-natural medium talalay latex is placed upon the latex core. On top of this is placed another 3" layer of 14 ILD all-natural premium talalay latex, this layer being medium-plush. There is no polyurethane foam in this mattress - its 100% premium all-natural talalay latex."


The ILD specs you listed would be for blended Talalay and the Renew uses 100% natural Talalay made by Latex International so they wouldn't be quite correct. The 100% natural Talalay has different ILD ranges than the blended latex that are less exact and you can see the ILD range for the different firmness levels of 100% natural here . The Renew is listed as a 9 on the Pure Latex Bliss comfort scale which is the same as the Beautiful (which uses blended Talalay which has more exact ILD's) so the layers would likely be similar. You can see the ILD specs for the Beautiful here . If I had to guess at the layers in the Renew I would guess they were N1 for the top layer, N2 for the next layer down, and N5 for the bottom 6" layer but I don't know this for certain. The different covers would also affect how they compare because the Beautiful has a stretch knit cover and the Renew has a wool quilted cover which for most people may increase the firmness a little because the wool quilting can reduce the ability of the latex to contour to your body shape and will also become a little firmer as the wool compresses.

The best effort to duplicate so far is

- Bamboo cover
- 3" ILD 19 Natural
- 3" ILD 19 Natural
- 6" Medium Core

I noticed a significant plushness difference between the Renew and the Beauty models which the salesperson attributed mainly to the wool fireproofing on the Renew versus a chemical based fireproofing on the Beauty.


There is more about the different ways that one mattress can "match" another one in post #9 here but once there are differences between the two designs then how they compare for different people would be more uncertain because changes in the design will have a different effect for different people. I would also be aware that Pure Latex Bliss calls it's blended Talalay "natural" and calls its 100% natural Talalay "all natural" because the ILD's you listed would be blended ILD's rather than 100% natural ILD's. Of course the blended is a little less costly than the 100% natural and is also a little more durable in the lower ILD's so you may choose to go with the blend if having all natural latex is less important to you.

1) Are there any more specifications in terms of the ILD for the Renew out there that may be more reliable?


Not that I know of although I believe that the specs I listed would likely be close.

2) Is my attempt to do my own build the closest I am going to get? Any suggestions or changes? If the 14 ILD on top is reliable, would the 19 be very noticeable?


The closest you could get would be to use the exact same layer thicknesses in the same ILD's with a very similar cover. Every change you make will have some effect that some people will feel more or differently than others. Most people would notice the firmer feel of the 19 ILD. The better sources for latex layers and and for mattress covers/ticking (including wool quilted covers) I'm aware of are listed in the component post here .

3) I currently have all natural Talalay for my build as the Renew was 100% natural also. I can save about $300 going blended but am wondering if any of the responsiveness or plush feel could be affected if I go with a blended 40% Natural / 60% Synthetic?


You can read more about the differences between 100% natural and blended Talalay in post #2 here but in very general terms ... blended Talalay in the same ILD will be a little more pressure relieving and a little more durable. 100% natural will denser and a little more "supportive" and of course would be of interest for those that for personal reasons prefer to have a more natural material in their mattress.

4) What is the level of noticeable difference do you think I am taking in doing my own build? (P.S. It saves me about 60%)


The only way to know this will be based on your own personal experience. The closer to the specs of your reference mattress you are the closer it will be but again different people will be more or less sensitive to any differences between them.

5) I have read about the risk of the wool being matted down over time but WOW we really liked the feel. It would be great if there was a more competitively priced 3" wool topper tout there. Any suggestions?


Wool will generally feel firmer than soft foam materials but there is more about wool toppers in post #8 here and the posts it links to and it also includes a link to a list of the better sources for wool toppers I'm aware of as well.

Some of the online component latex mattress manufacturers listed here here may also be worth talking to about which of their options would likely come closest to the Renew as well because many of them have good exchange/return policies that can reduce the risk of an online purchase.

Phoenix
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Last edit: by phoenix.

I wish someone could point me in the right direction! 28 Feb 2015 08:02 #5

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I feel like I am starting to understand the mattress itself but the wool toppers is now an uncomfortable area. The topper I tried in the store felt great and really added to the feel. It was an OMI (Organicpedic) 3" Wooly for $895. Apparently these are price controlled by the manufacturer so there are no "deals" out there on that particular topper. My questions are as follows:

1) After looking at reviews of wool toppers on Amazon , I see that a common complaint is either the matting down of the wool and also the shifting of it. What qualities should one look for to minimize these negative outcomes when choosing a wool topper.

2) How does one compare value with wool toppers. Would comparable lbs of wool per topper be infomative. Are there differences in wool types / processing. I am not necessarily concerned about "organic".

3) The Wool Bed Company has a " Surround Ewe Wool Mattress Renewal Program " where they will revitalize a topper purchased from them and replace the cover for 1/2 the original price. Any thoughts.

4) Are there cheaper synthtic materials that come close to that wool feel.

I guess my biggest concern is just spending a ton of money on something that will constantly need replacing to keep that day one feel.

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Last edit: by phoenix. Reason: "Organicpedic" added for search

I wish someone could point me in the right direction! 28 Feb 2015 13:00 #6

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Hi srockrae,

1) After looking at reviews of wool toppers on Amazon, I see that a common complaint is either the matting down of the wool and also the shifting of it. What qualities should one look for to minimize these negative outcomes when choosing a wool topper.


All wool toppers will compress to some degree (typically about 30% over time) but shifting and compression will depend on the type and breed and coarseness/resilience of the wool fibers, the type of layering methods, the thickness of the topper, the compression and tufting of the wool, the size of the wool batts, and on various other factors as well. Once the wool has gone through it's initial compression then it will maintain it's resilience and feel over the longer term without significant ongoing compression. There are some suggestions here that will help to even out compression and shifting and avoid or reduce the "hills and valleys" in a wool topper.


2) How does one compare value with wool toppers. Would comparable lbs of wool per topper be infomative. Are there differences in wool types / processing. I am not necessarily concerned about "organic".


Wool products can be difficult to compare in terms of "value" because there are many variables that can affect the price of a wool topper besides just the amount of wool that is used including the country of origin and whether fair wages and prices are being paid to the wool producers, the farming methods and growing conditions of the sheep, the type of carding, cleaning, and scouring that is used, the addition of any lower quality fibers to a wool topper, the type and breed of the wool, the specific construction of the topper and the amount of time and hand labor it takes to layer and tuft the topper, the type of outer fabric that is used in the topper, any organic certifications, and other factors as well. There is more about organic certifications in post #2 here and in post #2 here .

It can certainly be tempting to try and make "raw material" comparisons based only on the amount of wool or the thickness of a topper and this can certainly be one valid means of comparison but by itself it can be misleading.

When you can't test a particular topper in person then the best source of information about a particular wool topper will be a conversation with a knowledgeable and experienced manufacturer/retailer that can help you differentiate the specifics of the topper you are considering and help you make more meaningful comparisons with other "similar" wool toppers. The suppliers on the list will tend to be open, transparent, and informative about the wool toppers that they make or sell and the information they provide you can help you make more informed choices between the many options you have available. I would agree with you though that while OMI (Organicpedic) products (including their wool toppers) are certainly high quality ... they also tend to be more costly than other similar products.

3) The Wool Bed Company has a "Surround Ewe Wool Mattress Renewal Program" where they will revitalize a topper purchased from them and replace the cover for 1/2 the original price. Any thoughts.


There are a number of wool manufacturers that have a similar program that can recard the wool in your topper and add any additional wool that is needed and then recover it for a reduced price. I think it's a good idea.

4) Are there cheaper synthtic materials that come close to that wool feel.


There are other natural "hair" fibers that would be "somewhat" similar (horsehair, angora, alpaca etc.) many of them are more costly than wool. There are also other synthetic fiber toppers that are cheaper but none of them will have the same feel or properties or durability of wool (or other natural fibers). For those that prefer the feel and performance of wool or other natural fibers (and there are many) ... nothing else will be the same.

Phoenix
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Last edit: by phoenix.

I wish someone could point me in the right direction! 01 Mar 2015 13:22 #7

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After much research and with the help of Phoenix, I thought I would share what I ended up ordering to emulate the Pure LatexBliss Renew mattress. I went with one of the preferred vendors, Sleeping Organic out of Mt. Pleasant (Charleston) SC. I actually spoke and priced out about five of the preferred vendors but I decided on Sleeping Organic for various reasons:

1) Alex, the salesperson I dealt with was not only extremely knowledgeable and pleasant but was willing to go the extra mile to get me what I wanted. She went the extra mile to get me comfort layers like the N4 Radium layer which was not something they typically order/stock. She responds to emails and request within minutes and I had many request! She is not afraid to say "I don't know" but let me find out.

2) Although I think many of the companies could provide the all natural latex at competitive pricing, the mattress cover with Sleeping Organic sets them apart from others I compared to. They use a 100% organic cotton and organically raised Eco-Wool. No synthetic fibers or chemicals in a very nice and well built cover. Many times going the chemical approach changed the feel of the mattress dramatically. They simply provide a highly superior cover to the others I compared to.

My Build was as follows:

"The Tree" - 4 Layer Natural Latex Mattress
Size: King
Layer Configuration: SPLIT
100% Natural Botanical White Latex
Layer 1: N4 Talalay XSoft | N4 Talalay XSoft
Layer 2: N5 Talalay Soft | N5 Talalay Soft
Layer 3: D80 Dunlop Medium | D80 Dunlop Medium
Layer 4: D90 Dunlop Firm | D90 Dunlop Firm
Cover: Removable 100% organic, cotton quilted with 4oz
organic wool, 100% wool fire barrier.
Ultra Plush Organic Wool Topper

Lastly, I also spoke with the owner Chris of Sleeping Organic. He really impressed me with his desire to go above and beyond my expectations. I am reluctant to do business online for large purchases but when you do you want to go with a Company that has a great reputation and cannot afford to mar it. Chris is that kind of owner and wants to make his customers happy at all cost. I will report back after receiving the mattress but I really want to say that the Sleeping Organic preferred vendor has truly exceeded my expectations in every way on the front end of my purchase. Thanks Phoenix for including the list of preferred vendors and in particular getting me in touch with Sleeping Organic.

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Last edit: by srockrae.

I wish someone could point me in the right direction! 01 Mar 2015 13:38 #8

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Hi srockrae,

Thanks for taking the time to share such detailed comments and feedback about Sleeping Organic ... I appreciate it!

You certainly made a great quality and value choice and it's always great to hear when a vendor goes "above and beyond" for their customers.

Most importantly ... congratulations on your new mattress :)

I hope you have the chance to post your comments and feedback when you've received it and have had the chance to sleep on it for a bit.

Phoenix
Researching for a mattress?... Be sure to read The Mattress Shopping Tutorial.
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