This natural latex mattress offers a dreamy, chemical-free sleep

couple on natural latex mattress
© Latex for Less

Unlike conventional mattresses, which contain petroleum-based synthetics, this all-natural mattress by Latex for Less is as clean and green as they come.

A few weeks ago, a box was delivered to my house. Inside was a twin-size mattress from a company called Latex for Less. The company had reached out to me, asking if I would try a mattress and review it for TreeHugger. I agreed, knowing how much interest there was in an article on green crib mattresses I'd written a few years ago. Clearly people are concerned about what they're sleeping on -- and for good reason.

Conventional mattresses are notorious for off-gassing. Many contain toxic materials such as fire retardants, plasticizers, polyurethane foam, vinyl (PVC), and petroleum-based synthetic foams. While these mattress might look and feel nice, knowing what's in them is enough to induce insomnia.

The National Sleep Foundation says mattresses are designed to last only 8 years. While its reason is loss of support over time, such advice sounds rather pro-consumerist and anti-environmentalist to me, not to mention expensive, which is why I ignore it. The thought of so many fairly decent mattresses going to landfill is deeply upsetting.

Enter the natural latex mattress, made by Latex for Less.

I had never tried a latex mattress prior to receiving this one, so I ordered the smallest possible size, in case I disliked it. (I figured I could put it on my kid's bed, since he probably wouldn't notice the difference!)

The box was deceivingly small, but as soon as I opened it, the mattress rapidly expanded right before my eyes. It went from a two-inch roll of material to 9 inches of mattress in just a few minutes. (It seems this is normal packaging for latex, as TreeHugger writer Derek experienced the same thing with a mattress topper he reviewed in 2016.)

I hauled it up to my bedroom (it weighs 59 lbs) and informed my husband I'd be sleeping apart from him for a few nights. He wasn't impressed, and promptly inflated a camping mattress and set it up with a sleeping bag next to the mattress. There we slumbered for several nights, though I was considerably more comfortable than he was.

Sleeping on latex was unlike anything I've experienced before. It was really heavenly. It felt soft, bouncy, and jiggly, yet firm at the same time. Others have described it as "cloud-like, buoyant, pillow-soft, and springy," and I'd say those are apt descriptors. It is reminiscent of a memory foam mattress, minus the synthetic foam or gel, and without as much give.

The mattress I tried is a new 2-in-1 model that's medium-firm on one side, firm on the other. It is covered in organic cotton, certified by Oeko-TEX, and it contains a 100 percent natural wool barrier inside, in place of chemical fire retardants. The wool is sourced from California sheep and the entire mattress is made in the United States.

The latex comes from a single source in Sri Lanka. This has two key benefits. First, it eliminates the middleman, meaning a premium-quality mattress can be sold at a more accessible price; second, it guarantees consistency in the quality of the latex.

natural latex mattress© Latex for Less

Why choose a natural latex mattress? The greatest appeal lies in the fact that it's non-toxic and free from off-gassing. You don't get any of the added chemicals or fillers that conventional mattresses do. Latex for Less offers a 20-year guarantee, which is considerably longer than other companies. (Tempur-Pedic and Serta offer 10 years.)

Aside from the impressive manufacturing standards, I think the comfort of the natural latex mattress is its greatest selling point. So far, it remains on our bedroom floor; I am in no hurry to move it to my kid's bedroom, and my husband and I fight over who gets to use it for a nap on weekends. When the time comes to replace our own queen-sized mattress, I know where I'll be looking.

See Latex for Less for more information. Free shipping on all orders. Free 120-night trial available.

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