Latex foam mattresses are popular for it’s high breathability, hypoallergenic, and highly responsive characteristics. For customers who are unaware about the kinds of latex mattress, the terms used by manufacturers could be confusing, and that’s the reason why this blog could be helpful, to understand what manufacturing terms actually mean, as well as how and what the process of productions are.
If you have gone through our website, you must have had a fair idea by now that latex is the natural product obtained from latex-bearing tress or rather rubber tress. It is a thick milky substance that oozes out from the cuts made in the tree. It is the major source in the production of rubber and other latex products. Synthetic latex, which imitates natural latex, is also quite commonly used in making mattress, but lags behind when compared with natural latex.
Only 40% of the milk of the rubber tree is latex, and workers procure it right before sending it for the Dunlop process of pouring and curing. Early natural latex varies in consistency and quality depending on the manufacturer since there is no such standard for how much of milk of the rubber tree should be used. Some companies use a greater percentage of milk instead of purifying it further. Therefore, the manufacturer using 70% of the fluid would have a lower cost for their finished product compared to the one using latex reduced to its purer 40% of the sap from the tree.
To obtain more consistent latex and adopt a new standard, manufacturers began blending natural with synthetic latex. Synthetic latex possess the same cell structure like natural latex and is also stronger, but lacks the elasticity found in natural latex. As the name suggests, blended latex is made by mixing an amount of the purest latex with synthetic latex. This mixture varies with different manufacturer, but due to the inclusion of the highest quality natural latex, the material is quite standardized.
The term “Talalay Latex” suggests that the latex is a blend of approximately 70% synthetic latex, and 30% natural latex. 3% of the time it refers to 100% natural. The “Talalay process” is a time taking and expensive process, but when it comes down to producing latex that will have more durability and have a wider range of firmness, Talalay Latex is one. There are only three Talalay manufacturers in the world: Latex International, Radium Foam, and a new plant in China as of 2010.
The Dunlop Process, however, is unable to produce a very soft latex which is also supposed to be durable. If the natural Dunlop latex foam is too soft, it will wear out faster. It is also not easy to obtain a soft latex with the blended latex as well, although, the blended is still superior because of its consistency and higher durability. With the increased demand for more natural products, the two cost about the same now.
One of the rarest foams found in the industry is 100% Natural Talalay foam. Only two companies make 100% all Natural latex foam using the Talalay process: Radium Foam and Latex International. Talalay Natural Latex is a blend of approximately 98% natural and 2% synthetic. The 2% synthetic is required as a bonding agent in the “Talalay” process and does not shake its classification as 100% natural. Of all the Talalay processed latex produced by Radium Foam and Latex International, about 3% is all natural. It definitely costs higher due to steps in the process that slow down production because of the foam which is 100% natural. The Talalay process needs expensive specialized equipment, pushing its cost high up.
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