We’re assuming you’re currently on the search for a great mattress & happen to stumble upon the terms ‘Latex’ and ‘Innerspring’. Now you must be curious with all these questions – what exactly are these mattresses, what makes them different and which one truly is better?
What is a Latex mattress?
The words ‘comfort’ and ‘durability’ instantly come to our minds whenever latex mattresses are a topic of discussion. Latex is essentially rubber - it’s elastic and resilient without the use of any springs! Typically, there are 2 types of latex materials that you will find in the industry; synthetic and natural.
- Synthetic Latex. This type of latex is a man-made imitation of natural latex - produced solely from petrochemicals.
- Natural Latex. It is harvested from the sap of the rubber tree (Hevea Brasiliensis), making it a 100% natural material - the harvesting process is completely sustainable as the trees remain unharmed.
While latex is made of only 2 different materials, there are 3 types of latex mattresses in general:
- Blended Latex. As the name suggests, blended latex is the combination of both synthetic latex and natural latex. We know what you’re thinking; Ah, the best of both worlds? Must be perfect! However, it really isn’t as perfect as it seems – brands are very well aware of the fact that consumers are looking for natural materials, which is exactly why they jump into the opportunity by labelling blended mattresses as “made with natural latex”. It costs far less than 100% natural latex but is also dull and prone to wear and tear which reduces its durability significantly.
- Natural Latex. The collected sap that is taken from the rubber tree is mixed with air and then baked inside a mould and vulcanized into mattress blocks. The sap is the very reason behind the distinctive elasticity of a natural latex mattress!
Pro Tip: You may think that all natural latex mattresses are 100% natural - however, that is further from the truth! Even a 70% natural and 30% synthetic blend is called a natural latex mattress by industry standards - make sure to look at certifications before buying!
- Organic Latex. Natural and organic latex share the exact same feel, except for its production. Organic latex undergoes very tight production procedures with regard to plantation and processing. In order to be certified organic, it is essential for the latex to be grown in a special plantation free of any chemical fertilizers or pesticides – all the materials used are strictly controlled! From the soil to the rubber sap, our Heveya® Natural Organic latex mattresses are made with 100% certified natural organic latex. As we monitor each step of the process, you can rest easy with the assurance that there is no chemical off-gassing generated by the mattress!
What is an Innerspring (Spring Coil) mattress?
You probably would have guessed by now what the main characteristic of an Innerspring mattress is – Yup, springiness! An innerspring mattress consists of a steel coil support system topped off with layers made of foam such as memory foam, PU foam and latex. This keeps the springs from poking your body while you’re resting – ultimately maximizing your level of comfort! These layers are then glued and sewn together to make an innerspring mattress.
There are 4 main types of coils used inside various innerspring mattresses:
- Bonnell Coils: These are the most traditional type of mattress springs often shaped like an hourglass and wired together with a mesh of metal – very durable but offer lots of motion transfer!
- Offset Coils: Interconnected with helical wires, these coils also share an hourglass shape with squared sides – respond great to movements and conform to body shape!
- Continuous Coils: With several rows of single wires that mold into a circular shape, they are known for their durability but lack much needed spinal support.
- Pocketed Coils: Cylindrical shaped coils that are individually encased with pocket fabric – they contour the shape of the body perfectly and provide great motion isolation.
What is the difference between a Latex mattress and an Innerspring Mattress?
- Comfort and Support
You may be wondering – how does a spring mattress feel? and comparatively, how does a latex mattress feel?
Latex mattresses and spring mattresses adjust very differently to the body of the sleeper.
Spring mattresses have a good level of support and bounciness from the spring – the level of comfort, however, depends on the top layer of foam used in the innerspring mattress. If you are someone that prefers to sleep flat on top of the mattress and hates the feeling of sinking in, a spring mattress with a thin layer of foam on top is definitely the choice for you!
On the other hand, latex mattresses too are responsive and bouncy; they conform to the shape of your body as you lie on it. Due to its elasticity, latex mattresses provide ultimate pinpoint support, which keeps your spine in perfect alignment all night and provides great pressure relief – this too is the reason why health professionals usually recommend latex mattresses for clients with back pain.
- Motion Isolation
It is rather difficult to have a good night’s rest when you sleep with a partner that tosses and turns – thousands of times a night! Mattresses that provide motion isolation are great for light sleepers that wake up easily in response to their partner’s movements.
Unless the springs are individually pocketed, spring mattresses are definitely not the ideal choice for people who are sensitive to movement as they transfer motion quite easily, also with the possibility of squeaking sounds from the springs.
In comparison, latex mattresses provide more motion isolation than spring mattresses - most foam mattresses in the market, including latex, perform better in absorbing movement.
Hypoallergenic mattresses are a must-have, especially if you suffer from allergies and asthma. Natural latex mattresses would always be a top recommendation when you search for hypoallergenic mattresses as they are naturally resilient to allergens (bed bugs, dust mites, bacteria, mould – you name it!) without the use of any chemicals.
As for spring mattresses, there are numerous hypoallergenic options available in the market – the hypoallergenic properties in these mattresses usually come from the top comfort layer that is made of latex. This isn’t, however, as great as having a 100% hypoallergenic mattress throughout – while the top layer stays protected, the space between the innersprings allow the accumulation of bed bugs and dust mites. Moreover, these mattresses are always stitched closed from bottom to top, which gives you no control over your hygiene - it’s impossible to clean the mattress from the inside!
The Verdict: Natural Latex mattresses vs Innerspring mattresses
Get the best bang for your buck! Here are 10 questions to ask yourself before deciding a pick between latex mattresses and innerspring mattresses..
1. Do you wake up with allergies and need a dust-mite resistant and hypoallergenic mattress?
2. Does your partner move a lot at night and does it disturb your sleep?
3. Do you prefer the feeling of sinking in or lying flat on top of your mattress?
4. Do you suffer from back problems and want pinpoint support?
5. Do you hate sleeping warm and want a temperature-regulating mattress?
6. Are you looking for a short-term investment or a long-term investment?
7. Is the weight of your mattress a concern for you?
8. Do you have a tight budget – would the price be important?
9. Does the chemical smell of mattresses bother you?
10. Do you enjoy living an eco-friendly and sustainable lifestyle?
If you’re looking for a decent mattress at a lower price, a spring mattress is a great choice - they come in a variety of options and price points. It is, however, worth noting that spring mattresses that come at a cheaper price are usually lower-end and far less durable. You will be finding yourself replacing your spring mattresses in the next 5-7 years – and that is neither good for the environment nor for your wallet! In fact, high-end spring mattresses that offer guaranteed durability are actually priced even higher than premium latex mattresses.
A spring mattress is still a great mattress option. In comparison, however, natural latex mattresses offer additional benefits over traditional innerspring mattresses. Natural Latex mattresses hold a very high owner satisfaction rating, given that they’re incredibly comfortable! They also offer great breathability and air circulation properties and are naturally resistant to dust mites, bed bugs, mould and all sorts of allergens. Considering the humid and hot summers in Hong Kong - this is a huge plus in everyone’s books!
Okooko by European Bedding uses only 100% natural organic latex
We believe in comfort meeting nature, which is exactly why we promote mattresses made with the highest quality, yet in a sustainable manner. 100% natural organic latex mattresses are a great investment in both your health and the environment - they have absolutely zero carbon footprint and avoid the use of chemical pesticides, protecting you and future generations.
There you go, here’s where to check our 100% natural organic latex mattress range out!