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100% Natural Latex vs. 100% Natural Botanical Latex ??? 29 Aug 2016 17:09 #11

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Hi rvneedssleep,

Thanks for taking the time to share an update with your comments and feedback ... I appreciate it.

The result? I did NOT like the blended Talalay at all! I didn't like the more chemical odor (as opposed to a more rubber-like odor), I didn't like the Talalay feel, and it seemed to hold body heat worse than my experience with 100% natural Dunlop latex toppers..


The smell of the latex will generally dissipate to levels that you won't notice over the course of a few weeks.

While it's not always possible to to track down temperature regulation issues for any particular person on a specific mattress because there are so many variables involved (including your room temperature and humidity, your sheets, your bedding and bedclothes, your mattress protector or any mattress pads you are using, the firmness of your mattress, and where you are in the "oven to iceberg" range) and some people can sleep warmer on mattresses that most people are generally fine with ... there is more about tracking down a potential cause or causes for temperature regulation issues (at least to the degree possible for a specific mattress) in post #2 here and the posts it links to that may be helpful.

Latex in general is more breathable and "temperature neutral" than other types of foam materials such as memory foam or polyfoam and Talalay latex is also more breathable than Dunlop latex so your experience is somewhat unusual although the reason for your temperature regulation issues may be connected to other reasons besides the latex in your mattress.

The whole bed was too mushy. I actually think my originally intended layers would have been LESS mushy.


The layers you originally intended to purchase were a little bit softer than the ones you ended up purchasing so they may have been a little bit more "mushy" (comments like mushy generally refer to materials that are softer than someone tends to prefer) but it would be difficult to say for certain without actually trying it. Dunlop is also a little less resilient than Talalay so that could also affect the "mushy" feeling as well.

As you probably know from your reading here ... the choice between different types and combinations of materials and components or different types of mattresses are also more of a preference and a budget choice than a "better/worse" choice (see this article ) and not everyone prefers all latex mattresses so it's also possible that an all latex mattress just isn't the type of mattress that you tend to prefer.

I decided to avail myself of the opportunity to swap out layers. I have to say that Sleep EZ customer service was very accommodating in working with me to swap out both Talalay layers instead of just one. So what I ended up with was a more standard arrangement - 3" Firm 100% Dunlop on the bottom, 3" Medium 100% Dunlop in the middle, and 2" Soft 100% Dunlop on top.


This would be firmer than your first combinations and while you didn't specifically mention it I'm assuming that with the firmer layering and because all the layers were Dunlop that it felt less "mushy" to you.

I wish that I could say that I have now found the perfect mattress which is a total delight to sleep on and solves all of my pressure point and back pain issues, unfortunately it has night. I am rather disappointed, to say the least. My experience with a 3" latex topper on my hard-as-a-rock Sleep Number airbed had convinced me that an entirely latex mattress might be the perfect mattress for me.


All the layers and components in a mattress or a mattress/topper combination will have some effect on all the other layers and components both above and below it and on the mattress "as a whole" and since the mattress under a topper was a completely different type of mattress and the thickness of the top layer of latex (and possibly the firmness as well) was also different it's not all that surprising than an all latex mattress would be different from the latex topper on your airbed.

What I have found is that I usually still have hip pain lying on my side, which would indicate possibly it is too firm; but I frequently get lower back pain when lying on my back, which would indicate possibly it is too soft. However, it is the most comfortable when I am lying on my back. I am back to thinking that it is not possible for me to get a mattress that will work for me. I am keeping the mattress though. Some nights I do better on it than other nights. I am not entirely blaming the mattress. I think my body just doesn't cooperate with anything. (Note, I am not overweight. I am 5' 5" and 120 lbs.)


While it's not possible to "diagnose" mattress comfort issues on a forum with any certainty because they can be very complex and there are too many unique unknowns, variables, and complexities involved that can affect how each person sleeps on a mattress in terms of "comfort" and PPP or any "symptoms" they experience (and there are different causes that can lead to similar symptoms) ... there is more about the most common symptoms that people may experience when they sleep on a mattress and the most likely (although not the only) reasons for them in post #2 here .

While it's true that the most common cause of hip pain is a mattress that is too firm and the most common cause of lower back pain is a mattress that is too soft ... it's also possible that a mattress that is too soft can put the hip joint out of its neutral alignment and can cause hip pain as well and that a mattress that is too firm and doesn't allow you to sink in enough to provide good support for the more recessed parts of the body can lead to lower back pain as well.

It would be helpful to know whether you had any hip or lower back pain on the original layering combinations that you tried and how your experience and "symptoms" changed with each combination because this could provide some clues about the layering combination that would have the best chance for success.

I'm not sure if you have already returned your original layers but there may be some layering combinations that work better for you.

Phoenix
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100% Natural Latex vs. 100% Natural Botanical Latex ??? 29 Aug 2016 17:35 #12

Is there a chance that you have wide hips and as such, they do not sink deep enough into the 2" comfort layer? Maybe a 3" comfort layer would have been a better choice if you have hip pain.

Is your foundation solid?

Have you tried a topper to see if that helps?

We ordered (2) XL twin 10" Organic select from sleepez to make a king with adjustable foundation. There wasn't a dramatic different in cost between the 9" and 10" and I liked the idea of a thicker comfort layer. I didn't want any blended latex so got the organic to get 100% natural.

My wife is 120 lbs at 5'4" and got a dunlop firm bottom, 100% natural Talalay medium middle and 100% natural Talalay soft top. She's is very happy with this combination. Initially she though it was too squishy, but after several nights, she fell in love with it. There is no noticeable odor except when we were unpacking and installing them and I have a very sensitive nose.

As far as the sleepez sale, I didn't feel any need to rush my decision to order, I didn't see any expiration dates on the sale either, maybe I didn't look hard enough, but I wasn't going to make my decision on a sale end date anyway.

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100% Natural Latex vs. 100% Natural Botanical Latex ??? 29 Aug 2016 19:09 #13

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Hi Phoenix

Thanks for replying. Here are comments for some of your points.

I tend to sleep hot, unfortunately, but I was definitely sleeping "hotter" on the Blended Talalay then on 100% Natural Dunlop. All other room and bedding variables have remained the same from my original setup of latex topper on top of Sleep Number bed right through to the final arrangement of the all latex mattress. My past experience with a supposedly "cool" memory foam topper was definitely too hot for my comfort.

I forgot when I was writing my post that I was going to explain that the blended Talalay felt to me like it fell somewhere between memory foam and Dunlop latex in the "mushiness" range. When I say "mushy," I don't exactly mean "soft" (although that is part of it), rather I mean the squishy memory foam-like feeling which to me is "mush."

I'm not so sure that what I originally intended to purchase would have been softer than what I ended up ordering. Since Talalay is softer than Dunlop, I'm thinking that 2" soft + 3" medium Talalay MAY have been softer than had I gotten the 2" soft blended Talalay + 3" soft Dunlop. But perhaps not. Perhaps a "soft Dunlop" lies somewhere between "soft Talalay" and "medium Talalay" in softness.

Yes, after the swap out I definitely ended up with a firmer mattress. I actually debated about possibly making a swap that would have resulted in my having only a 2" firm Dunlop on the bottom, 3" medium Dunlop in the middle, and 3" soft Dunlop on top. But at that point I knew I couldn't keep swapping things out affordably if it was still "too soft" overall, so I opted for the 3" firm - 3" medium - 2" soft because I figure if it turned out it was TOO hard, I could always add yet another softer layer on top of everything at a later date. In fact, I have a "down alternative" topper that I have used on and off with my Sleep Number + Dunlop latex topper bed. I did try that on top of what I have now, but I once again felt like I was sinking into the bed too much when lying on my back with that and my back was really hurting. I since have removed the fake down topper and am back to a lesser level of back pain.

I knew the all latex mattress would be different than my latex topper on the airbed - I wanted something different. My hips REALLY hurt me when laying on my side on the Sleep Number, even with the latex topper (although the latex helped more than any other topper I had tried on the airbed, which is why I thought perhaps an all latex mattress would be ideal).

I can tell you that with regards to the hip pain while lying on my side, it is definitely a case of my hip not sinking in enough to provide good support for the recessed parts of my body. (But in answer to the other poster "pungo", no, I do not have particularly wide hips. If anything, I think they tend to be more narrow.) But if I were to go softer, as I had starting out, then it would throw my back out of whack in other ways. As I said in my previous post, I am the most comfortable on the mattress when lying on my back. So it's a trade-off.

I can't remember exact details of my hip pain from the original squishier arrangements, but as best as I can recall at this point, my hip pain MIGHT have been less but my lower back pain was definitely worse.

Bottom line: what I really need is a new body!!

Yes, I already returned the original layers. I really didn't like the blended Talalay. If money wasn't an issue, I would rather have gone the route that "pango" did and gone for the organic mattress where natural Talalay was an option. I might have chosen to stick with the top layer being Talalay in that case. But who knows... I might not have like the natural Talalay any better than the blended Talalay.

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100% Natural Latex vs. 100% Natural Botanical Latex ??? 29 Aug 2016 20:01 #14

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Hi rvneedsleep,

I tend to sleep hot, unfortunately, but I was definitely sleeping "hotter" on the Blended Talalay then on 100% Natural Dunlop. All other room and bedding variables have remained the same from my original setup of latex topper on top of Sleep Number bed right through to the final arrangement of the all latex mattress. My past experience with a supposedly "cool" memory foam topper was definitely too hot for my comfort.


I'm not sure which SleepEz mattress you purchased or whether it has a wool quilted cover or not but some of the suggestions in my previous reply may help to resolve temperature regulation issues ... at least to some degree.

I'm not so sure that what I originally intended to purchase would have been softer than what I ended up ordering. Since Talalay is softer than Dunlop, I'm thinking that 2" soft + 3" medium Talalay MAY have been softer than had I gotten the 2" soft blended Talalay + 3" soft Dunlop. But perhaps not. Perhaps a "soft Dunlop" lies somewhere between "soft Talalay" and "medium Talalay" in softness.


Both Talalay and Dunlop can be made in a wide range of firmness levels so either one may be firmer than the other depending on the ILD of the layer. If you have two layers that are the same thickness (layer thickness can affect how soft or firm a layer feels) and both of them are the same ILD (and the ILD was measured using the same criteria which often isn't the case) then for most people the Dunlop would feel a little firmer because it has a higher compression modulus (the rate that a material becomes firmer as you compress it more deeply). Depending again on the specific ILD ... medium Talalay would generally feel firmer than soft Dunlop although it will also have a different and more resilient and "springy" feel. Soft Dunlop in the same thickness and ILD as Talalay would likely feel firmer than the Talalay.

I can't remember exact details of my hip pain from the original squishier arrangements, but as best as I can recall at this point, my hip pain MIGHT have been less but my lower back pain was definitely worse.


Thanks ... that's helpful as a "pointer".

I can tell you that with regards to the hip pain while lying on my side, it is definitely a case of my hip not sinking in enough to provide good support for the recessed parts of my body. (But in answer to the other poster "pungo", no, I do not have particularly wide hips. If anything, I think they tend to be more narrow.) But if I were to go softer, as I had starting out, then it would throw my back out of whack in other ways. As I said in my previous post, I am the most comfortable on the mattress when lying on my back. So it's a trade-off.


"Support" is often misunderstood because the goal of a "supportive" mattress is to keep the spine and joints in good alignment and this requires the type of contouring support that allows some parts of the body to sink in more (softer) and some parts of the body to sink in less (firmer) and this will vary on an individual basis based on body type and sleeping style. There is more about primary or "deep" support and secondary or "surface" support and their relationship to firmness and pressure relief and the "roles" of different layers in a mattress in post #2 here and in post #4 here that may also be helpful in clarifying the difference between "support/alignment" and "comfort/pressure relief" and "feel" and how they interact together.

It's certainly possible that you may need both firmer deep support and softer or thicker comfort layers to solve or at least alleviate both the pressure relief issues on your side and the lower back pain on your back.

You could firm up the deep support by exchanging the firm bottom layer with the medium middle layer.

If this helps to reduce or solve the lower back issues when you sleep on your back then you may also be able to solve or at least help the pressure relief issue by adding a relatively thin topper to provide a little bit of extra thickness/softness and improve the pressure relief when you are lying on your side.

Bottom line: what I really need is a new body!!


While I can certainly sympathize with the thought (on some days more than others :)) ... it still may be possible to make some adjustments that help to bring you a little bit closer to your "ideal" to the degree that is possible with the layers that you have available.

Phoenix
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100% Natural Latex vs. 100% Natural Botanical Latex ??? 02 Sep 2016 12:56 #15

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Yes, the mattress I purchased from SleepEZ does have a wool cover.

Which reminds me that I forgot to mention a couple of other comments about the mattress from Sleep EZ. My "positive" comment is that they seem to have "upgraded" it and given me the organic cotton/wool cover instead of the non-organic cover that is listed as included with the "Natural" (non-organic) mattress set. I liked that. My "negative" comment is that the mattress is several inches shorter than a twin should be! I did NOT like that. The 3" topper I had from Absolute was basically twin size and fit fine on top of my existing "Sleep Number / Select Comfort" airbed. As it is now, I have a 3 inch gap between where the SleepEZ mattress leaves off and my "Sleep Number / Select Comfort" foundation ends. I have everything on a standard twin size rail frame system and I have a footboard. So I have had to get a king size pillow and stuff it into the gap (especially so that the cat that sleeps on the foot of my bed doesn't fall off into the gap between the mattress and footboard!). I was definitely disappointed to discover this discrepancy in sizing and I don't understand why that would be.


My 3" "Medium-soft" from AbsoluteComfortOnSale is ILD 4.75
My 2" soft layer from SleepEZ is ILD 4.68
The slightly lower ILD (although I realize those numbers are approximations) and the 1" thinner thickness explains why the SleepEZ "soft" feels "squishier" than my original AbsoluteComfort 3" "medium-soft" (whatever that exactly means) topper.

I briefly looked at the links to other posts that you provided. One of the posts reminded me of another issue I have. I seem to need "softer" support under my hips/butt but "firmer" support under my torso because if it is too soft under my torso I get upper back/between the rib cage/shoulder blade pain.

Now an update of what I have tried and will be trying. A couple of nights ago I removed the SleepEZ 2" soft top layer from the mattress. Instead, I laid my original 3" "medium-soft" AbsoluteComfort topper on top of the mattress. So far, that arrangement has proven to be the most comfortable. This could be for several reasons: (1) I have an extra inch of a "soft" layer (even though the layer feels less "soft"/squishy than the one I removed); (2) the 3" AbsoluteComfort topper is outside of the mattress encasement, so I am now sleeping closer to the latex and farther away from the cotton/wool mattress cover, which may be why it also seems to be cooler (although I have to also take into consideration that the effects of Hurricane Hermine have cooled the Florida temperatures off a bit for the past couple of days, so that may also be contributing). That said, my hips are still not sinking in to the point that my recessed waist area is adequately supported when side-sleeping. THEREFORE, I am trying yet another experiment starting tonight! I have replaced the SleepEZ 2" soft layer BACK into the mattress encasement AND I have the 3" AbsoluteComfort medium-soft topper on top of the mattress! Overkill? Perhaps. That will give me 5 inches of softer layers on top. Will it prove to be too soft and give me a backache? Will it finally solve the side-sleeping-hip-pain issue? Stay tuned... :woohoo:

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100% Natural Latex vs. 100% Natural Botanical Latex ??? 02 Sep 2016 13:21 #16

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On an unrelated note, is there a way to get a printer friendly version of a post? I wanted to print this thread, but the only way I've been able to do so is by copying and pasting it into Word.

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100% Natural Latex vs. 100% Natural Botanical Latex ??? 02 Sep 2016 14:39 #17

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Hi rvneedsleep,

My "negative" comment is that the mattress is several inches shorter than a twin should be! I did NOT like that.


Latex is very elastic and "squishy" so it's possible that the latex is somewhat bunched up inside the cover. If this is the case then you can reassemble your mattress and "wave" the layers into position so they are more relaxed inside the cover. How long is your mattress (measured in between the longest distance between the sides of the head and foot of the mattress rather than just across the top surface of the mattress)? While different manufacturers can have some variations in their standard sizing ... the ISPA (International Sleep Products Association) standard measurement for a twin size mattress would be 38" x 74 1/2" +/- 1". If your mattress is somehow out of spec then I would give SleepEZ a call.

My 3" "Medium-soft" from AbsoluteComfortOnSale is ILD 4.75


4.75 would be the density of your latex expressed as lbs per sq feet rather than the ILD. Some Dunlop latex manufacturers use density for their firmness descriptions rather than ILD. You can see some rough "translations" between density and ILD ranges for 100% natural Dunlop latex in post #2 here . This would only apply to 100% natural Dunlop because synthetic Dunlop would have the same density for the same ILD range.

My 2" soft layer from SleepEZ is ILD 4.68


This is also a density number rather than an ILD number.

I briefly looked at the links to other posts that you provided. One of the posts reminded me of another issue I have. I seem to need "softer" support under my hips/butt but "firmer" support under my torso because if it is too soft under my torso I get upper back/between the rib cage/shoulder blade pain.


The hips/pelvis area is the heaviest part of the body so it would be unusual to need less "support" under the heavier parts of the body which normally need to be "stopped" from sinking in too deeply to keep the lower back in good alignment.

There is more general information about this in the links I included in one of my previous replies in this topic about primary support and secondary support and the relationship between support/alignment, comfort/pressure relief, and "feel" and the different layers in a mattress.

One of my previous replies also includes more information about the different types of symptoms that people will often experience on a mattress and some of the most likely (although certainly not the only) reasons for them.

Now an update of what I have tried and will be trying. A couple of nights ago I removed the SleepEZ 2" soft top layer from the mattress. Instead, I laid my original 3" "medium-soft" AbsoluteComfort topper on top of the mattress. So far, that arrangement has proven to be the most comfortable. This could be for several reasons: (1) I have an extra inch of a "soft" layer (even though the layer feels less "soft"/squishy than the one I removed); (2) the 3" AbsoluteComfort topper is outside of the mattress encasement, so I am now sleeping closer to the latex and farther away from the cotton/wool mattress cover, which may be why it also seems to be cooler (although I have to also take into consideration that the effects of Hurricane Hermine have cooled the Florida temperatures off a bit for the past couple of days, so that may also be contributing). That said, my hips are still not sinking in to the point that my recessed waist area is adequately supported when side-sleeping. THEREFORE, I am trying yet another experiment starting tonight! I have replaced the SleepEZ 2" soft layer BACK into the mattress encasement AND I have the 3" AbsoluteComfort medium-soft topper on top of the mattress! Overkill? Perhaps. That will give me 5 inches of softer layers on top. Will it prove to be too soft and give me a backache? Will it finally solve the side-sleeping-hip-pain issue? Stay tuned... :woohoo:


The information in your posts has become too complex for me to easily follow and find what I need in previous posts and I don't have enough clarity or specifics about how the different combinations you have tried compare to each other so if you need any help with your layering experiments or would like some feedback it would be helpful if you could list all the layers in each layering combination you have tried (either from top to bottom or bottom to top) and then list the specific symptoms you experienced with each layering combination directly underneath the layering description starting with your first combination. It would also help to bold the layering combination so I can refer back to them more easily.

Once you have described your experience and actual physical symptoms on the first layering combination you tried then you can list all the layers for the second combination you tried (again in bold) and then describe your experience and symptoms underneath this one as well. It's particularly important from this point onwards to describe how your symptoms change with each combination relative to the previous one (whether they get better or worse and if possible "how much" they get better or worse) because the only thing I have to go by to gain any insights and identify any possible "patterns" in your experience is with your feedback about how your experience and symptoms actually change from one combination to another. The changes between your symptoms with each layering combination is more important than just a description of that combination without relating it to other combinations you have tried.

Once you have finished the second combination then you can list all the layers in the next combination you tried and repeat the process for each combination etc. If you start each section of a post with the specific layering that you are making comments about (again bolded would be helpful) with your comments underneath it's much easier for me to find the information I need and follow your comments and make more meaningful suggestions about the type of changes that may have better odds of success.

While it's not necessary ... it may even be worthwhile using only one post to discuss a single layering combination and your experience with it so that each of them are more clearly separated and I can follow your descriptions more easily without having to refer back to previous posts that contain more information that is "mixed up together" than I can easily follow.

If I have followed your posts correctly your first layer combination was (from top to bottom) 2" of soft Talalay on top of 3" of medium Talalay on top of 3" of medium Dunlop all inside a wool quilted cover and if this is correct then if you could post a detailed description about your actual physical symptoms and experience on this combination as a first reference point it would be the best place to start because I'm not clear about the physical symptoms you experienced on this combination. Then you can add a separate section in the same reply (or a separate reply) about your experience on each subsequent combination. This will help to simplify your posts (which have more information than I can easily follow) and help me identify how your experience changes with each combination which in turn may give me some insights into the type of changes that may help.

I realize that this may take some time and you may need to go back in your memory about each combination you've tried but it's the only way I can make any meaningful comments that include any specifics rather than just general comments that may not apply to any specific layering combination.

Of course if you prefer to just experiment with different combinations and then let us know how each one worked without needing any comments or suggestions from me then that would certainly be fine as well.

Phoenix
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100% Natural Latex vs. 100% Natural Botanical Latex ??? 07 Nov 2016 15:15 #18

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Okay, so I'm finally posting an update for the sake of completeness and letting you know what happened.

First some quick replies to your last post.
The latex wasn't bunched up inside the cover. The cover itself was somewhat short.
Yes, I agree that the information in my posts became too complex to be able to follow.
I started making a chart, primarily for myself, so that I could see what I did and keep track of once again systematically rearranging the layers and trying them for a few nights. I thought about posting my "chart," but ultimately that became unnecessary.

The reason I didn't bother to post my chart was because after trying every conceivable combination, I finally decided that an entire latex mattress simply does not work for me. So I unfortunately had to make the decision to avail myself of SleepEZ's generous return policy and return the whole thing. It was too much money to invest in something that not only wasn't at the very least a considerable improvement from what I had been dealing with for years, but even seemed to be worse.

So since I returned the latex set, I temporarily resorted to using an old Simmons mattress that I think has pocketed coils. It is too hard (as it always was) even with my original 3" Absolute Comfort latex topper on top (which also makes it way too high for various reasons). In the meantime, I decided to minimize my financial investment in experiments. I ordered a med-firm pocketed coil spring unit ONLY from Bay Bed & Mattress, with the intention of putting the spring unit inside my old Sleep Number case and topping it off with my 3" latex topper. Depending on what I experience with that, I might consider trying some different toppers (not latex). At least if that arrangement doesn't work out for me, my financial loss will be fairly minimal. At that point I will have to figure out what NEW direction I should try. I'm hoping, however, that my piecemeal mattress will ultimately be more tolerable for me than what I have been dealing with.

The coils were just delivered today only a short while ago. Probably Wednesday I will set things up. I probably won't post anymore (especially not on this current thread) regarding the outcome (unless it is only a one or two sentence update of "it worked!" or "it didn't work!").

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100% Natural Latex vs. 100% Natural Botanical Latex ??? 07 Nov 2016 16:02 #19

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Hi rvneedssleep,

I finally decided that an entire latex mattress simply does not work for me. So I unfortunately had to make the decision to avail myself of SleepEZ's generous return policy and return the whole thing.


I’m sorry to hear that your mattress didn’t work for you as you had hoped. At least it’s good news that you had the foresight to choose a company that had a good return/exchange policy like SleepEZ.

I probably won't post anymore (especially not on this current thread) regarding the outcome (unless it is only a one or two sentence update of "it worked!" or "it didn't work!").


That sounds like a plan. I’ll be interested in learning how things proceed for you.

Phoenix
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100% Natural Latex vs. 100% Natural Botanical Latex ??? 09 Nov 2016 14:28 #20

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I set everything up yesterday. The springs fit very well inside of my Sleep Number case with foam walls. I've only had one night on it so far (and was laying awake watching news of election until wee hours) so don't know definitively yet, but it seems better than what I've had so far. I have my old 3" latex topper on it but I also have a half wedge under the mattress to elevate my head, which adds a new issue in the mix for consideration. It is definitely "softer" than my old Simmons and I was able to lay there without starting to jump around out of discomfort from feeling like I'm laying on a rock. So initial impression is good. Time will tell...

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