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Searched for: sleep science black diamond 11
03 Jan 2014 16:33
  • DarkFiber1
  • DarkFiber1's Avatar
Hello All,

I've been researching mattresses for the past several wks and can't seem to make a confident decision. Some info about myself:

- We are about 5'6" 185lbs and 5'5" 150lbs
- Recent back pain due to sagging of current mattress
- While shopping, we think a medium firm mattress feels best
- Would prefer memory / gel / latex foam or hybrid
- Budget <$1100 excluding foundation

We have searched many online retailers and major in-store retailers. As of now, we are considering Costco mattresses simply because of their return policy and our lack of confidence. Has anyone owned or considered the Sleep Science Black Diamond? Here's a quick look at the layers of the mattress. Any feedback or suggestions would be greatly appreciated! ;)

Mattress top layer: 1” of proprietary 5 lb black diamond bamboo charcoal visco memory foam
Second layer: 1” of proprietary 5 lb slumber tech visco memory foam
Third layer: 2” of medium latex
Bottom layer: 7” proprietary support tech base foam

More info on the mattress can be found here:

30 Dec 2013 19:27
  • Breezer23
  • Breezer23's Avatar
30 Dec 2013 18:46
  • phoenix
  • phoenix's Avatar
Hi Breezer23,

You can see my thoughts about the Sleep Science 11" Black Diamond mattress in post #4 here .

Overall it appears that the quality of the materials is good (with the cautions I mentioned in the post I linked) but they are imported from China and don't have any certification for VOC's and offgassing which along with knowing how long the mattress may have been compressed would be my main concerns (see post #6 here and post #2 here ).

Of course with Costco you are also rolling the dice about whether the mattress is a suitable match for you in terms of PPP because they don't provide any real guidance for their customers but at least you have the benefit of a good return policy if it turns out not to be a good match for you (see post #4 here for my thoughts about buying from a big box store like Costco).

As you probably know I don't pay much attention to mattress reviews because they don't generally give any information about the quality of the materials or the durability of the mattress and since each person's experience on a mattress can be very different from someone else or even the majority of people, they also don't provide much meaningful information about whether a mattress is a suitable choice for any particular person (see post #13 here ).

Overall I would say it's likely a good quality choice and while it wouldn't be my first choice for the reasons and uncertainties I mentioned, at least the Costco return policy lowers the risk of giving it a try if you are comfortable with buying a mattress that uses memory foam that has no certification.

30 Dec 2013 12:45
  • Breezer23
  • Breezer23's Avatar
I recently returned my NovaForm Mattress (Costco) after 8 months of use. The mattress was mostly comfortable but I dont' think it ever fully "inflated" once it was removed from the box. It was uneven and seemed to suffer from Alzheimer's (took ages to return to default position).

I originally thought about purchasing the Simmons ComforPedic Renew but would prefer to stay with Costco given my Cash Card situation from my mattress return.

In short, I came across this Sleep Science Black Diamond 11" Queen Memory Foam Mattress. Based off what I've read here, it seems to have some quality foam though it will probably be a very firm mattress. Here are the specs:
  • 11” Black Diamond Memory Foam Mattress fits the dimensions of your bed.
  • Meets the requirements of 16 CFR Part 1633 – federal flammability (open flame) standards
  • Limited Warranty: 20 Years
  • Mattress cover sleeping surface is made with a silk blend fabric.
  • The cover is removable and washable.
  • Mattress top layer: 1” of proprietary 5 lb black diamond bamboo charcoal visco memory foam.
  • Second layer: 1” of proprietary 5 lb slumber tech visco memory foam.
  • Third layer: 2” of medium latex
  • Bottom layer: 7” proprietary support tech base foam.
  • Patented wedge, edge to edge Support System

Any thoughts on this mattress based on the spec sheet? The mattress has great reviews on Costco but with my previous Mattress in a Box experience I'm a bit nervous.
Thanks in advance,
04 Aug 2013 17:18
  • phoenix
  • phoenix's Avatar
Hi cherlyz,

I feel if I can test the Costco beds and get an “initial” feel and if you think they are durable and after what I have read from your site they do pass the “minimum” standards – then we may have to go that route – return policy sure helps

We are willing to spend the little extra because of the return policy in this case.

You can read some of my thoughts about buying from Costco or other big box stores in post #4 here . In some cases they have some good quality/value available but because they are not "mattress people" they are not able to really provide any guidance about the suitability of any of their mattress for specific body types or sleeping styles so you would really be depending on their return policy and getting a free roll of the dice. If you are able to test a mattress in person of course and you do some careful and objective testing then the risk of making an unsuitable choice in terms of PPP (Posture and alignment, pressure relief, and Personal preferences) is much lower and then the only consideration would be making sure that the quality of the materials and value is good compared to other options you have available. If you are looking at memory foam options then there are also some good online memory foam choices listed in the links inside the "read first" post ( post #1 here in case you haven't read it) which also offer free returns in case you make a choice that is less than ideal.

While I can't speak to whether a mattress is suitable for your need and preferences (see post #2 here ) ... I can certainly share my thoughts about quality or value.

Sleep Science Black Diamond:

You can see my thoughts about this mattress in post #4 here .

Sleep Science Cool Retreat 11" Gel:

This mattress uses 4" of 4 lb memory foam (a 2" layer with "gel inserts" and another 2" layer without) so the quality / density of the foam in the top 4" comfort layers are a little lower than the Black Diamond. I would also guess that the polyfoam support layers are also 1.8 lbs or above which would be suitable. They don't say the thickness of the gel inlay in the top layer but solid gel is a high quality, durable, and "safe" material (see post #4 here ). My biggest concern with this mattress .. like the Black Diamond ... is that Sleep Science / Southbay doesn't have any certification for harmful compounds or VOC's for the memory foam and polyfoam in their mattress (I would not be concerned with the latex or the gel inlay). Overall the quality/durability of this mattress in the comfort layers would likely be a little lower than the Black Diamond because the top 4" uses lower density or less durable materials than the Black Diamond (other than the top gel layer) although the gel inlay would also increase the durability of the 4 lb memory foam below it.

In terms of temperature regulation ... there are many factors that combine together that affect the sleeping temperature of a mattress and you can read more about them in post #2 here and the links to other posts and information it includes. One of these links talks about the three different "technologies" that are used to regulate temperature (thermal conductive materials, phase change materials, and moisture wicking/ventilation). Phase change and thermal conductive materials tend to have a more temporary short term effect on the sleeping temperature of a mattress and once temperatures have equalized then the foam itself becomes an insulator. The most effective temperature regulating technology over the course of the night is moisture wicking and ventilation.

While there is no way to quantify the specific sleeping temperature of one mattress compared to another outside of your own personal experience ... the Black Diamond has less memory foam in the comfort layers and has more elastic and breathable latex underneath which means that you would likely sink in less which would be "cooler" in theory than the same thickness of memory foam. On the other hand ... the Cool Retreat has more memory foam that is lower density so you would sink in more deeply into the insulating memory foam but this would be offset to some degree by the gel inlay (at least temporarily while you are going to sleep if not over the course of the whole night) and the memory foam is a little lower density which is generally more breathable than higher density memory foam. The Black Diamond uses a silk blend for their mattress cover (but they don't mention what it is blended with or the amount of silk in the blend which could be very low) and the Cool Retreat uses a polyester/nylon blend so I would give the cooling edge in terms of the cover material to the Black Diamond because of the cooling properties of natural fibers like silk.

In essence ... both of these are memory foam mattresses so they wouldn't be as temperature regulating as latex or natural fiber comfort layers and the other layers and components (such as your mattress protector, and your sheets) will also have a significant effect on the sleeping temperature regardless of the type of foams or materials used in the top layers of the mattress.

So hopefully this "analysis" will help you make some of the more intuitive or "best judgement" comparisons that can help you decide whether either is your best choice or help you choose between them based on your own personal value equation .

04 Aug 2013 06:37
  • cherylz
  • cherylz's Avatar
I have read much of your website and first, thank you SOOOO much for all of the information, it has been many hours of reading and a great education. My husband and I are prepared to head to the bay area to some of your recommended manufacturers to check out beds, however, I need your honest opinion on the new beds at Costco.
We have our own full-time business and realize the time we have invested and will still need to invest to do this is costing us a lot and so I am coming to you as the expert.

I feel if I can test the Costco beds and get an “initial” feel and if you think they are durable and after what I have read from your site they do pass the “minimum” standards – then we may have to go that route – return policy sure helps

We are willing to spend the little extra because of the return policy in this case.

Are needs are the “coolness” and “durability” of course
We are looking at the Sleep Science Black Diamond and the Cool Gel bed – not sure if the Black Diamond layers will offer the “cool” effect with the bamboo – that is not something that I found on your site or theirs – your insight would be helpful there. We are looking at the 11” thicker bed and we are looking at the split king or xl-twins (one factor is the weight of a single king)

Your comments and suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

Many thanks in advance – an admiring fan of your site – and again, THANK YOU for all of the time and effort you have spent putting your site together.
30 Sep 2012 11:05
  • MRTRIPOD's Avatar
12 Jul 2012 16:53
  • phoenix
  • phoenix's Avatar
Hi choosey,

Post #2 here lists the better options in and around the Houston area which would be closest to Katy, TX. There are some good options on the list.

The Sleep Science black Diamond mattress is made by Southbay International which is a Chinese manufacturer that sells primarily memory foam mattresses. While on the surface it appears to use high quality materials (5 lb memory foam and a 2" layer of latex over the polyfoam support base) ... sometimes the "devil is in the details".

As you can see they use bamboo charcoal in the memory foam which is a filler (which can reduce the durability of the memory foam) so this would be the "filled density" of the foam rather than the polymer density (which is what determines the quality and longevity of the foam). In other words "filled memory foam" could actually be the equivalent of a lower density memory foam in terms of durability than the 5 lb spec that is listed but I would guess this is a good quality material. The 5 lb layer of memory foam underneath this would also be good quality. When I talked with them they wouldn't provide any details of any testing for VOC's and harmful substances that had been done on their foams and just said "it's the same as everyone else" but no specifics. They are not listed on the CertiPur site or on any other certification site so they are not the "same as everyone else" and there is no way to know for sure about any harmful chemicals in the mattress or any offgassing issues. I would tend to be cautious when purchasing mattresses made in Asia if there is no certification for harmful substances or VOC's that are publicly available.

It has 2" total of memory foam with 2" of latex under that but they also don't say the type or blend of latex they are using so there is no way to know the quality of the material (unless they provide the information) although it is probably natural Dunlop made by Latex Systems in Thailand which would be a good quality material. While 2" of memory foam is not "bad" ... and I actually prefer thinner layers of memory foam (it's less risky and softening will have less of an effect) ... it also means that the memory foam would be less costly than a mattress that uses thicker layers of a similar quality material. This is of course made up by the 2" latex layer which is also a more costly material but if the latex is synthetic or blended Dunlop ... then it would not have the same quality and durability as 100% natural Dunlop latex. They also don't list the density/quality of their polyfoam base layer although I would guess that it's at least 1.8 lbs and probably higher which would certainly be suitable for a base layer in this price range.

In other words ... it's not really possible to know the specific quality of all the materials in this mattress unless they provide you with more specific information but on the surface they appear to be good. My biggest concern would be the lack of certification for the polyfoam and memory foam in the mattress. A secondary concern would be whether the mattress has been compressed for long periods of time which can lower the durability of the foams (see post #6 here ). It may have a nice feel when it is new (which is when most reviews are written) because even lower quality foams can feel good at first but there is no way to know the durability of the materials for certain and foam softening and the loss of comfort and support is not covered by warranty. In essence ... it's a roll of the dice although I don't think it's as "risky" in terms of quality as some of the Costco mattresses that clearly use lower quality materials. If you are looking to purchase a memory foam mattress online ... some of the better options I'm aware of are listed in post #12 here .

Also, what is your recommendation of Latex vs. Memory Foam?

I don't recommend one material over another because this is really a matter of personal preference and they are very different in performance and feel. My own personal preference is latex but this is a preference only based on how it feels and the other qualities of latex which I prefer. I also like combinations of the two materials in certain layers. Latex is a more instant response material and has many advantages, not the least of which is it's greater durability, and memory foam is a slower response material but only your own personal experience can tell which you prefer. What I do recommend however is that regardless of which material you choose in a mattress that you know the quality of the material because both of them have lower quality and higher quality versions.You can read about some of pros and cons of memory foam here and the pros and cons of latex here . While there is a wide variety of different "versions" of each in both quality characteristics ... they both have a distinctive feel and I generally recommend testing both in a showroom so you can know which of the two categories of foam you prefer.

Hope this helps.

11 Jul 2012 23:55
  • choosey
  • choosey's Avatar
I'm looking for a new mattress and am pretty overwhelmed with all of the information on the internet. I was pretty much focused on getting the Sleep Science 11" Black Diamond Memory Foam King Mattress from Costco or the Serta iComfort, but know I'm not so sure. Reading this site, I've started to wonder whether I wouldn't be better off with a latex mattress like this one from mattresses.net: www.mattresses.net/king-all-natural-talalay-w-free-bamboo-cover-upgrade.html.

So, to make a long story short, what is the king best mattress you would recommend for about $1500? I am 5' 10" and 200 lbs and a side/stomach sleeper. My wife is 5' 3" and about 115 lbs and mostly a side sleeper. I'd really prefer to buy from somewhere that I can make an easy return (like Sams/Costco), but I don't want to settle for something that is low quality or not durable.

Thanks in advance for your help!
12 Apr 2012 00:02
  • sicko
  • sicko's Avatar
Hi, I'm trying to pick a mattress and just can't seem to decide on what to get. I've been reading this site and others, and it just seems like there's a ton of information out there but no consistency for comparing various mattresses to one another.

Previously I've only had inner spring mattresses, but I've decided to get a memory foam (or latex) mattress to give them a try this time. So, I went to some mattress stores to try out different mattresses, and to my surprise I preferred mattresses that were fairly firm. Of the ones I tried that people might be familiar with, I liked the Tempur-Pedic Rhapsody but actually wished it was a bit more firm with less sinking in. The mattresses I liked the most was actually the iComfort Genius (their firmest iComfort mattress), I would actually prefer the iComfort if it was a touch softer but I figure it would probably soften up some if I got one and slept on it daily. However, there's a good number of iComfort reviews online that say their mattress started to sag and not rebound or provide good support after a very short period of time, so I decided to keep looking even though I like the feel of the iComfort Genius.

Ultimately what I'm looking for is a comfortable firm mattress that's a good value. As for value, the way I look at it, for every $100 I spend on a mattress, I want it to last me a year.

Currently I'm looking at:

Novaform Serafina from Costco: www.costco.com/Browse/Productgroup.aspx?Prodid=11672691

Sleep Science Black Diamond from Costco: www.costco.com/Browse/Productgroup.aspx?prodid=11673057

And the PacBamboo from BedInABox.com: www.bedinabox.com/memory-foam-mattress-pacbamboo.html

Does anyone have any information on any of these mattresses? I know the Bed In A Box mattress is 3lbs foam, which I've read on here as potentially not being as durable. The Black Diamond mattress has two 1" layers of 5 lbs foam, but that's the mattress I can find the least information about.

I'm also open to any suggestions people might have, including local mattress companies if there are any in my area. I live in Northern Virginia, just outside of Washington DC.

Really, any help that you all could provide would be greatly appreciated.
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