Over the years I never gave much thought to mattresses. It was a place to rest our heads at night, with comfort being the prevailing factor. They were purchased on an as-needed basis.
And then I had a revelation. There’s so much more than comfort that needs to be taken into consideration when buying a new mattress for your bed. And it’s very confusing!
Here I was spending countless hours researching the safety of personal care products, cleaning products and food and I had never given a second thought to our mattress. Let’s face it, most of us spend a lot of time in bed. When it comes to infants and toddlers, they spend close to half of their early life in contact with a mattress. Americans age 15 and over spend on average about 8.8 hours sleeping.
The bad news is that a conventional mattress can contain a toxic combination of chemicals – from petrochemicals, to dyes and additives and chemical flame retardants. If we’re spending around 8 hours in bed each night that’s a lot of time spent breathing in whatever toxins your mattress is off-gassing.
What is latex?
100% Natural latex is made with a milky white liquid that is extracted from a Hevea-Brasilienis tree, better known as a rubber tree. Rubber trees are native to South America and were spread around the world in the 19th century because of their great value. They are tapped in a very similar way to the way that maple trees are tapped for their maple syrup!
This is a very environmentally friendly way to create a material, because the trees must be grown for several years before they will yield latex, and then each tree can be used for up to twenty years. The process of harvesting natural latex is highly sustainable because it promotes the long-term growth of large numbers of trees. After the latex is collected from the rubber trees, it is thickened and then baked at very high temperatures. It then turns into the latex used to make my new Sleep on Latex mattress.
Sleep on Latex Mattress Review
The mattress came rolled up in a box. It was hard to imagine how a Pure Green 9 inch firm mattress fit into this box. But it did.
Once unwrapped it very quickly sprang to life and was placed on our bed frame. I was grateful that there were no strong odors associated with this new addition to our bedroom. We couldn’t wait to try it out.
We crawled into bed that night after a great day skiing with the kids. The mattress was firm (there’s a choice of soft, medium and firm when ordering) and incredibly comfortable. Pure Green latex foam contains absolutely no synthetic latex or fillers. The covering is made from 100% cotton knit fabric made with GOTS certified organic yarn.
No toxic flame retardants
Sleep on Latex uses 100% New Zealand wool, which adds a thin layer of softness and comfort to the surface of the mattress. The wool has inherent fire resistant properties and provides an effective fire barrier. This allows the Pure Green™ Natural Latex Mattress to naturally comply with federal flammability regulations without the use of any fire retardant chemicals or barriers.
If you’re looking to dump your old mattress the Sleep on Latex site has great info on how to recycle your old mattress.
New mattresses are not inexpensive, but a safe, non-toxic selection is a good investment. The pricing is dependent upon the size and thickness and can range from $649.00 – $1,700.00 with free shipping.
Bottom Line: I really love this mattress. The materials used are pure, without any synthetic latex or fillers. It’s incredibly comfortable and there are no awful smells from off gassing. I was impressed by their use of organic cotton and 100% New Zealand wool as a fire barrier. The cost is a bit steep, with a queen, 9 inch mattress in the $1,200 range.
*If you have a latex allergy this clearly isn’t a good option for you!
Are you looking for a new, safer mattress? What have you found?
Disclosure: Thank you to the kind folks at Sleep on Latex for sending me a mattress for review. All opinions are my own. Always.