Looking for an eco-friendly mattress that is soft, comfortable, supportive and hypoallergenic? A latex mattress is what you need! Don’t know what it is? Read on to know everything you should know about latex mattresses before buying them.
Latex Mattress: Most Demanded & Hot Selling Mattress in India
A latex mattress is hyped all over the world for its ultimate comfort, nature friendliness and supportive nature. Known to be the best sleeping accessory for babies, pregnant ladies, athletes, and senior citizens too, latex offers luxurious comfort to everyone.
These mattresses are formed in various ways and have different layers, thicknesses, etc. Although this depends from brand to brand, a latex mattress, in general, provides a premium sleeping surface for ultimate comfort and support.
In a world that is continuously getting polluted, the hypoallergenic nature of these types of mattresses makes them the best selling mattresses, especially in India. Being free from harmful chemicals, this mattress is very safe for people with sensitive skin and allergies in addition to being sustainable.
However, there is a lot more to know about it. From the manufacturing to processing, types to variants, prices to benefits, we have covered everything you need to know about the latex mattresses.
What is Latex?
Latex is the white-coloured, milky sap that is obtained from the rubber tree (or Hevea brasiliensis). These trees are mainly found in South East Asia and South America. Completely natural, the raw material of latex mattresses is free from any types of chemicals or additives.
How is Latex Collected?
To collect the latex sap, the rubber tree is first tapped diagonally so that it can ooze out and get collected. The thin cut allows the sap to flow continuously for around six hours. Later, the cut is made again to collect more sap in a vessel.
Latex, after collection, quickly begins to coagulate, if it is directly exposed to sunlight and may get hardened. So, it is usually collected early in the morning or at night. After the collection, the processing of latex quickly begins within 24 hours.
What Makes Latex More Eco-Friendly than Other Raw Materials?
Most of the raw materials on earth, upon their harvest or collection, harm the environment in some way or the other. However, collection of latex sap does not harm the rubber tree in any way. Also, it doesn’t create any type of pollution in the environment. On the contrary, it helps in the reduction of pollution from the surroundings as the rubber tree removes a hefty amount of carbon dioxide from the air.
The rubber tree consumes a lot of carbon dioxide content from the atmosphere every year for the production of latex. Latex is hence, one of the most eco-friendly raw materials on the earth. Doesn’t this make latex the best material to sleep on?
Types of Latex Used in Latex Mattresses
There are four types of latex used in latex mattresses viz. Organic, Natural, Synthetic and Blended. You must never choose synthetic or blended latex and only go for either Natural or Organic latex. While organic latex is very costly and difficult to find, natural latex is a worthy pick.
Natural Latex: Natural latex, as the name suggests, is the completely natural form of latex without the usage of synthetic latex or chemicals. It contains natural and eco-friendly fillers like clay to extend the volume of latex while remaining eco-friendly and safe.
Organic Latex: Organic latex is collected from rubber trees that are grown and farmed using 100% organic practices, without the use of any type of chemicals or pesticides. Basically, organic latex is 100% natural latex but it doesn’t involve the usage of any types of fillers. This type of latex is hence, the cleanest latex available but is very costly and not “really” used in mattresses. Many times, only the top layer or the mattress fabric is made up of organic material, and marketed under “organic mattress”.
Synthetic Latex: Synthetic latex feels similar to natural latex and is not easy to identify at once. It is a man-made material that involves the use of harmful toxins, chemicals and additives. Though its texture and comfort match that of natural latex, it is not safe to sleep on and poses high risks of allergies to the sleeper. This type of latex is usually very cheap due to which customers without enough knowledge end up buying it.
Blended Latex: Blended latex, as suggested by its name, is made by using both the natural as well as synthetic latex. Although it is slightly better than synthetic latex, it is not completely safe for sleeping. It creates air pollution during manufacturing, is less durable and can end up giving you allergies in the long run.
Processing of Latex after Collection
After the collection of latex, it is converted into a mattress and that procedure is known as “processing of latex”. Basically, latex sap is mixed with some important materials to get solidified and turn into a mattress. Processing can, hence, be done in various ways but the most common ways of processing latex are either through the Dunlop method or through the Talalay method.
Types of Latex Mattresses
Since the latex sap can generally be processed in one of two ways, the two types of latex mattresses are:
- Dunlop Mattresses
- Talalay Mattresses
What is the Dunlop Method?
The Dunlop method is the oldest method of latex production and consists of three main stages viz. stirring, moulding, and baking. This method is simpler than the Talalay method. In this method, here are the steps that follow:
- Latex collected is first sieved and the unwanted particles are removed.
- The clean latex is now properly mixed in large cylindrical stainless steel tanks.
- This allows the latex to turn into a thick, foamy and bouncy paste after continuous churning.
- Once the latex foam is ready, it is transferred to a conveyor or into a mould.
- These moulds are then passed on into a special oven that leads to the solidification of the mixture.
- This processing of heating latex to a high temperature is known as vulcanization.
- Following vulcanization, the moulded mixture is washed. This ensures that the remaining amounts of liquid latex or other unreacted solidifying agents are washed away.
- Once this huge block of latex is obtained, it is dried using hot air or baked into an oven to remove excess moisture.
The Dunlop method, hence, creates a latex mattress of any shape or size easily.
Pros of Dunlop Method:
- The latex foam produced is denser and heavier
- A simple and easy method
- The production is energy efficient
- Less expensive
- Firmer than mattresses made using the Talalay Method (Very useful for people looking for firm mattress)
- More durable
Cons of Dunlop Method:
- The heavy bottom sometimes leads to negligible inconsistency in the density
What is the Talalay Method?
Contrary to the Dunlop Method, the Talalay Method is the modernized way of manufacturing latex mattresses. However, this procedure is more energy-intensive and sophisticated. The texture of Talalay latex is slightly different than Dunlop latex. Here are the steps that follow in the Talalay Method:
- Liquid latex, after getting sieved is transferred into a mould of desired shape and size.
- The mould is then sealed and closed using a vacuum so that the latex is dispersed evenly throughout the container.
- Then, the mixture is flash-frozen to obtain a stabilized cell structure.
- It is then immediately flash heated to get solidified permanently.
- After proper cooling, the block of latex is ready and is removed from the mould.
Although this might seem like a very quick method, it cannot be used to manufacture large mattress sizes
Pros of Talalay Method:
- Highly bouncy
- More breathable (negligible difference though)
- Softer than mattresses made using the Dunlop Method (Very useful for people looking for soft mattress)
Cons of Talalay Method:
- Uses more energy
- Not as durable as mattresses made using the Dunlop Method
Benefits of Sleeping on a Latex Mattress
Now that you know how latex is collected along with the types of latex and the ways of latex production, it is now time to know some of the advantages of sleeping on latex mattresses.
- This mattress is completely safe and eco-friendly if organic or natural latex is used.
- Being hypoallergenic, latex resists all sorts of allergens, dust moulds, mites, bacteria, microbes, etc.
- You can reduce your carbon footprint on the Earth by purchasing latex mattresses as they help in reducing greenhouse emissions in nature by largely absorbing carbon dioxide.
- Latex has an incredible elasticity and bounce to it.
- With its natural springiness, this mattress is hence very comfortable for sleeping.
- With its conforming abilities, latex adjusts to the body curves and helps in aligning the spine and correcting postural deformities.
- This type of mattress t is suitable for all sleeping positions.
- Dividing the body into various zones, the pressure points are distributed.
- This type of mattress hence reduces sore pressure points and ultimately, reduces and prevents body pain.
- With its pin core holes technology, a latex mattress has excellent breathability and temperature regulation properties.
- This helps you sleep cool and sweat-free without retaining any sort of body heat.
- This type of mattress also improves blood circulation in the body.
- With its ability to bear weight up to 135 kgs, this mattress is good for obese people as well.
- Most importantly, no matter how much weight is put on it, this type of mattress does not form any permanent indentations on the surface.
- So, even after years of usage and good maintenance, it can last long without any wear and tear.
- This type of mattress is highly supportive for the back and instantly gives an uplifting sensation as soon as the sleeper lies down.
- Soft and comfortable, this type of mattress has medium firmness which is required by the body for utmost comfort.
What Types of Sleepers Should Sleep on Latex Mattresses?
Latex mattresses are the only type of mattresses that are good for all types of sleeping positions. So, no matter if you are a side sleeper, back sleeper or stomach sleeper, this mattress will always support your back and will keep you away from body aches.
Best Mattress for Side Sleeping
Since side sleepers usually curl their body, they end up developing pressure points at their back, shoulders and hips. Hence, they need a mattress that alleviates the strain put on their spine and relieves the pressure on the nerves. With its medium firmness and highly supportive nature, a latex mattress keeps the spine in good alignment while ensuring excellent air circulation to the sleeper.
Best Mattress for Back Sleeping
Back sleeping is the best sleeping position but only 10% of people actually choose to sleep this way. This is because back sleeping is slightly uncomfortable as compared to side sleeping. In some cases, back sleeping can also develop pressure points at the lower back due to the force of gravy. Latex mattresses hence, give instant support to the spine with its buoyant properties.
Best Mattress for Stomach Sleeping
Stomach sleeping causes back and neck pain and is hence, not a recommended sleeping position. However, if you sleep this way, you need a mattress that can align your spinal column in the right way and take away all the extra pressure that is exerted on your chest and abdomen. Stomach sleepers require a mattress that is soft but equally supportive. Hence, latex mattresses with an added cushiony top layer are the best ones for stomach sleepers.
Latex mattresses have unending benefits for the sleeper if they have the best quality. Morning Owl takes pride in manufacturing 100% natural latex mattresses that are extremely comfortable, supportive and environmentally responsible. Although more expensive than the other types of mattresses available in the industry, these types of mattresses are completely worth it.
You should never compromise with the quality of your sleep and your body. So, if you are on a tight budget, you must still make the best purchase without worrying about your budget. We are here to take care of that! You can avail our financing facility to pay for our premium quality mattress in easy instalments, at your convenience.