The Ultimate Latex Mattress Guide

July 18, 2019

The Ultimate Latex Mattress Guide

Considering a Latex Mattress? - What You May be Asking Yourself

Are you considering buying a latex mattress as your next big mattress purchase? Do you have questions? This guide addresses the questions you might have about latex mattresses, and whether they are a good fit for you, your home, and your family. By the time you finish this guide, you’ll know everything you ever thought to ask about latex mattresses ―and maybe a little more.

  1. Do latex mattresses cause allergies?

There are three types of allergies related to natural rubber latex, the type of latex used in making mattresses, according to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America. They include:

  1. IgE-mediated allergic reactions. This can represent a true medical emergency and requiring immediate medical care.
  2. Cell-mediated dermatitis. Often related to chemicals used to make some latex products rather than the latex itself and often a precursor to IgE-mediated reactions.
  3. Irritant dermatitis. Often referred to as an allergy, though not exactly an allergic reaction though latex allergies can develop with repeated use after dermatitis develops.

Many people who develop latex allergies, however, do so after repeated exposure to latex products. It is very common among medical professionals who wear latex gloves routinely as well as people who work in plants that manufacture products using natural latex as a base.

When sleeping on a latex mattress, you don’t actually come in contact with the latex itself. Instead it is buried beneath the mattress covering, any mattress protectors you may use, and your sheets, posing little risk for developing a latex allergy if you do not already have one.

That being said, if you do have an existing, diagnosed latex allergy, you should consult with your doctor before investing in a natural latex mattress for your home.

  1. Will latex mattresses make you sick?

Some people complain of an unpleasant “rubbery” odor upon opening the box latex mattresses ship in. This is not the result of any of the following, which are commonly found in synthetic foam products and other types of mattresses:

  • Harmful petrochemicals
  • Volatile organic compounds (VOCs)
  • Mercury
  • Lead
  • Heavy metals
  • Prohibited phthalates
  • Chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs)

In fact, the rubbery odor released by a natural latex mattress poses no health risk to you or your family. Airing your room out will help the odor dissipate quickly, and the fact that no toxins are released into the air from your natural latex mattress will help you rest easy throughout the night.

  1. Do latex mattresses cause back pain?

Many mattresses are associated with back pain. However, most of that back pain is associated with a lack of support in mattresses. In fact, Spine Health reports that insufficient mattress support results in the following:

  • Poor sleeping posture
  • Muscle strain
  • Improper spinal alignment

All these things contribute to low back pain. Natural latex is one of the most supportive materials available in today’s mattress market. Eco Terra Latex Mattresses come in your option of medium and medium-firm, and feature fabric-encased coils to offer responsive support for your spine.

  1. Can you recycle latex mattresses?

What happens to mattresses after they’ve been used is an increasing concern for consumers worried about your impact on the planet. According to the Seattle Times, in 2007, nearly 300 old mattresses and box springs arrive at local landfills every day.

They are bulky, occupy valuable landfill real estate, and are not easily biodegradable. Eliminating as many as possible of these mattresses from calling the local landfill their final resting place is a noble interest. Unfortunately, some mattresses are made with potentially harmful ingredients. This isn’t the case with natural latex mattresses from Eco Terra made with eco-INSTITUT Standard 100 Certified Sri Lankan ARPICO 100 percent natural latex.

In other words, the materials used in our mattresses are not harmful and completely recyclable.

  1. Do latex mattresses sleep hot?

Most people will agree that hot mattresses do not make for a good night’s sleep. Fortunately, natural latex is created with an open-cell design that allows air to flow freely through the mattress. That, combined with our fabric-encased coils, creates a perfect environment for sweat-free sleep.

  1. Does latex in mattresses cause headaches?

Natural latex is made with natural botanical latex foam. The foam is manufactured without the introduction of the following:

  • Harmful chemicals
  • Prohibited phthalates
  • VOCs
  • CFCs

Many of the items in mattresses lead to off-gassing, which can cause substantial headaches in the beginning, and lingering health effects for years after bringing them into your home. You won’t experience this release of toxins into your home or the headaches associated with it.

  1. Is it acceptable to wash your latex mattress?

Yes, you may spot clean your natural latex mattress using a slightly damp cloth and liquid soap. Be careful to avoid saturating any one area with soap or water, and make sure the mattress dries thoroughly before replacing any mattress pads, mattress toppers, sheets, blankets, etc.

  1. Can latex mattresses get bed bugs?

There is no such thing as a bed bug-proof mattress. But, the dense nature of latex foam makes these mattresses more resistant than other types of mattresses to bed bug infestations. There are things you can do, though, to make your home and bed even less hospitable to bedbugs, like:

  • Vacuum frequently
  • Eliminate clutter from your home
  • Use protective covers on mattresses and box springs
  • Check purchases of used, antique, or second-hand furnishings, rugs, and beds for signs of bed bugs before bringing them into your home

A little prevention can save you a world of hassles and headaches by preventing bed bug infestations from ever taking place.

  1. Can you use a latex mattress with a platform bed?

Natural latex is quite versatile as far as mattresses go. The Eco Terra natural latex hybrid mattress uses a combination of fabric-encased coils and natural latex that requires a strong, supportive foundation like that of a platform foundation or a box spring.

  1. Do latex mattresses harbor dust mites?

Dust mites are among the leading contributors of asthma and allergy attacks year round, according to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America. Mattresses are some of their favorite hiding spaces. Natural latex, however, creates an environment that dust mites do not prefer, creating a less hospitable environment for them, and reducing your exposure to the allergens and debris they leave behind.

  1. Can you flip a latex mattress?

It is possible to flip some natural latex mattresses though it is isn’t necessary to do so because of the cellular structure of natural latex mattresses. In the case of the Eco Terra natural latex mattress, flipping is not necessary at all and may reduce your comfort.

  1. Can you fold latex mattresses?

Many people prefer latex mattresses for their adjustable or multi-position beds. The Eco Terra natural latex mattress is no exception, and is perfectly usable with all standard adjustable beds.

  1. Can you cut a natural latex mattress?

Cutting your natural latex mattress will damage the latex, causing it to break down more quickly than it should. Cutting the latex may nullify your warranty.

  1. How long will a latex mattress last?

As with anything, quality matters when it comes to durability. The same is true with latex mattresses. However, natural latex mattresses tend to last longer than any other mattress materials with many needing to be replaced after only five to seven years of use. Latex mattresses by comparison can last considerably longer, with some lasting up to 20 years or longer. Eco Terra Latex Mattresses come with a 15-year non pro-rated warranty.

  1. Are latex mattresses mold-resistant?

While not completely immune to the possibility of mold, natural latex is naturally resistant to mold and mildew. That natural resistance, combined with proper care, will help to prevent the growth of mold deep within the layers of your mattress. Proper care includes:

  • Not getting your mattress wet. Avoid spills, and use only very slightly damp cloths for cleaning.
  • Allow to completely dry before covering the mattress. This included covering with mattress covers, sheets, blankets, toppers, etc.
  • Avoid spills in the bed when possible. Address them promptly when they do occur.

Mold can be hazardous to your health and that of your family. Latex mattresses are excellent choices for families seeking to eliminate the risks of mold in mattresses.

  1. Can you leave latex mattresses on the floor?

One of the critical elements for maximum comfort and durability in a natural latex mattress is the flow of air into and out of the mattress. Some of the benefits this capability offers include:

  • Wicks away moisture to prevent mold
  • Allows cool air to flow through allowing you to sleep cooler
  • Attracts dust mites to the mattress due to close proximity to the floor

In some cases, leaving your natural latex mattress on the floor may even invalidate your warranty.

  1. Will latex mattresses get softer in time?

Latex mattresses do not soften over time. It is one thing that sets them apart from other types of mattresses. Instead, you will enjoy the same consistent level of comfort and support from the first day you purchase your mattress until you are ready to purchase your next latex mattress, many years from now.

  1. Are latex mattresses likely to sag?

Just as latex mattresses do not soften over time, they also do not sag. This means you won’t experience the lumps, bumps, and lack of support so many people complain about as their mattresses age. In fact, most people begin making these claims at about seven years of ownership with traditional mattresses. Latex mattresses have much longer life expectations and usefulness – more than double in most cases.

  1. Where do you buy latex mattresses?

You might have difficulty finding latex mattresses in your neighborhood mattress showroom. Most mattresses are made to order when you make the decision to buy. However, if you shop with a reputable manufacturer like Eco Terra online, you will have plenty of time, 90- full days, to try your mattress, risk-free inside your home. This means you can try it for yourself to see if it meets your needs for comfort and support.

If you try your Eco Terra latex mattress for a full 30 days, and decide it doesn’t work for you, simply send it back to us for a full refund within the first 90 days of ownership. It’s that simple.

  1. Which is the best latex mattress?

There are plenty of options to choose from in today’s crowded mattress marketplace. Even among those claiming to offer latex mattresses, there are plenty of brands promising big things. However, not all latex mattresses are created equal.

Unfortunately, if you just read the brochure alone, you might miss big parts of the overall picture. Truth in advertising isn’t necessarily the way of the world when it comes to textiles and claims of natural products, purity, or even the organic status of products.

You can’t trust what labels claim about their products anymore. The good news is that there are independent certifying agencies that will test products like mattresses and the materials that go into making them, to see if they meet certain standards for purity, quality, and organic standards.

If you truly want to buy the best latex mattresses to bring into your home, then you want to find mattresses that carry one or more of the following certifications:

Any one of these certifications indicates a quality mattress product. Mattresses that carry multiple certifications have not only made the effort to adhere to the high specifications and standards of one certifying organization, but multiple organizations, which is an indication of dedication and quality consumers can depend on.

  1. What are the benefits of buying a latex mattress?

There are several benefits that make buying a natural latex mattress well worth the effort. Especially if you take the time to find a cost-effective latex mattress that still meets certain high quality standards, like multiple certifications. These benefits include:

  • Purchasing an eco-friendly product. This means you can sleep better on your new latex mattress, and rest easy knowing you’re not harming the planet by doing so.
  • Incredible comfort. Not only do latex mattress provide unsurpassed support in a mattress, but our Eco Terra natural latex mattresses offer outstanding comfort as well.
  • Sleeps cool. Stop sweating the night away, and enjoy the incredible air flow you’ll experience on a natural latex mattress in every season.
  • Durable and long lasting. Latex mattresses are built to last far longer than mattresses made of traditional materials, allowing your savings to really multiply.
  • Healthier sleep experience. Because your natural latex mattress contains fewer allergens, toxins, heavy metals, and volatile organic compounds (VOCs), your family can enjoy a healthier night’s sleep every night.
  • Body contouring. Latex mattresses contour to the shape of your body while you sleep while bouncing back to its original shape immediately after you get out of bed. Many people subscribe the feeling as one of sleeping on top of a cloud.
  • Not only are latex mattresses naturally resistant to dust mites, mold, and mildew, but they also do not harbor viruses and bacteria deep within their layers the way other types of mattresses manage to do.

Honestly, how many other types of mattresses can make the same claims when it comes to the planet, your health, and the amazing sleep experience you’ll enjoy?

  1. What are latex foam mattresses really made of?

Believe it or not, and many people do find this difficult to believe, natural latex mattresses are made almost entirely from the sap of rubber trees, Hevea Brasiliensis. The sap is then used to create foam using one of two manufacturing methods:

  1. Dunlop
  2. Talalay

Latex foam made using the Dunlop method is almost exclusively made for durable, solid mattress cores. It creates a denser foam that is responsible for the incredible support natural latex mattresses are famous for.

The Talalay method creates a much plusher type of latex foam that is widely used for comfort layers and top layers on natural latex mattresses as it is incredibly comfortable and known for cradling curves, and providing the perfect “padding” for pressure point relief.

  1. Do latex mattresses smell bad?

Some people claim there is a slight rubbery odor when they first remove their latex mattresses from the packaging. Since the mattresses are made with the foam of rubber trees, this is actually quite normal and mild. You should not be overly concerned about the smell as it is not related to chemicals and toxins, and dissipates quickly in well-ventilated rooms.

This smell is not like the off-gassing that occurs with mattresses containing polyurethane foam, and should not pose a health risk to your family members in most cases.

  1. Are latex mattresses toxic?

In the past, mattresses have been made with a variety of chemical products later discovered to be toxic, and present genuine health risks to the people who slept on these mattresses. You will not find that to be the case with natural latex mattresses made with natural manufacturing processes. In fact, many manufacturers have taken additional steps to ensure the safety of families who sleep on them by obtaining various certifications, like those mentioned above.

But what you really want to look for when selecting a natural latex mattress for your family is that the mattress is made with single-origin materials that do not contain any of the following:

  • Polyurethane
  • Chemical adhesives
  • Formaldehyde
  • Chemical fire retardants

The absence of these ingredients indicates a mattress that is safer for you, your home, your family, and your planet.

  1. Latex mattresses cost more than others, are they worth it?

Some might say that claims of high costs associated with high quality latex mattresses are more myth than matter. You can find outstanding quality in your latex mattress at surprisingly affordable prices. This is especially true once you factor in the long life-span of natural latex.

Eco Terra natural latex mattresses are very affordable natural latex mattresses that are practical, versatile, and every bit as comfortable, supportive, and healthy as many of the higher priced mattresses on the market today. Plus, they have earned more than their fair share of certifications along the way, including:

  • ECO-INSTITUT Standard 100 for latex free of harmful substances
  • GOTS Certified 100 percent organic wool
  • GOTS Certified 100 percent organic cotton for the mattress covers

Combine that with an impressive 15-year non pro-rated warranty, and there is a lot to love about the affordability of natural latex mattresses in today’s highly competitive marketplace.

  1. What kinds of sleepers sleep best on latex mattresses?

Some people claim that latex mattresses are only good for back sleepers because they are so firm and supportive. Nothing could be further from the truth though. While a solid foundation is certainly great news for back sleepers, stomach sleepers also do well on firm mattresses.

However, natural latex mattresses are made for all bodies and all types of sleepers. Side sleepers will discover that the natural buoyancy and resilience of latex mattresses are the perfect companions to their side sleeping ways. Because natural latex contours to the shape of your body, it hugs all your curves, and provides amazing cushioning support to pressure points that might ache profoundly on other types of mattresses.

The bottom line is that latex mattresses are great choices for all types of sleepers including:

  • Back sleepers
  • Side sleepers
  • Stomach sleepers
  • Multi-position sleepers

The key is to find the perfect combination of firmness and mattress size. The 90 day risk-free trial gives you an opportunity to explore your options without risk, so you can be confident you’re buying the right type of mattress for your sleep needs.

  1. Are latex mattresses safe for children and infants?

Because latex mattresses are made without harmful fire retardants and natural ingredients that can often be traced back to their original sources, 100 percent natural latex mattresses are considered safe for use with children and infants. In fact, they are outstanding choices for the those who are sick and elderly as well.

You are the only person who can decide whether a latex mattress is the right choice for use in your home and with your family. This guide should answer all your burning questions, though, to help you make an informed decision about the right mattress for you.

Patrick Gunther

Patrick is an accomplished writer. He has been in the retail mattress space for the past 13 years, and more specifically in the natural mattress niche. He blogs on the subjects of natural mattresses, sleep, health, fitness, and green living.