Tempurpedic vs. Latex, DIY and Other High-End options
Oct 6, 2009 6:03 PM
Joined: Oct 6, 2009
Points: 2
I replaced my old innerspring mattress with a Simmons last year, but have found in the last year that the new mattress bothers my back.  I now have trouble sleeping through the night, which I never experienced before (and I continue not to have any pain during the day).  After several trips to various mattress stores, I discovered that I liked the firmer Tempurpedic mattresses (with the HD-Tempur foam) better than innerspring and air mattresses.  But I have two concerns:

(1) Reports -- on this site and elsewhere -- are mixed about the durability of Tempurpedics.  Some people report sagging and indentations (though not the 3/4-inch needed to trigger the warranty); others don't.  Does anyone have a view on or experience with this?

(2) I have not looked much at latex mattresses, but there seems to be tremendous interest in them on this site.  There is also a lot of discussion of do-it-yourself mattress building, which seems like a recipe for disaster given my very limited knowledge.  But before I spring for the Tempurpedic, are there any obvious drawbacks to Tempurpedic versus other high-end or high-energy options?

Thanks so much in advance for any help.  I truly appreciate it.


Re: Tempurpedic vs. Latex, DIY and Other High-End options
Reply #1 Oct 6, 2009 6:11 PM
Joined: Aug 17, 2009
Points: 542
Jeff: Welcome to our little corner of the Internet.

I personally have a FloBeds 4 layer 100% natural botanically grown Talalay process latex bed. And I like it very much. But from what I have found during my research, over the last several months, if I were you, I would do a great deal more personal research regarding Tempurpedic mattresses. I layed on a few of them during my research and initially they felt good. But from what I have read on this site, and many other sites, quite a few customers who purchased them found out later that there were a variety of reasons that caused them to regret there purchase.

On the other hand there are some people who love them. But since they are so expensive I would certainly look at alternatives. Giving this site a good review, particularly the archives section should turn up some very interesting reading for you.

Good luck with your investigation.
Re: Tempurpedic vs. Latex, DIY and Other High-End options
Reply #2 Oct 6, 2009 7:37 PM
Joined: Aug 21, 2009
Points: 486
I spent a lot of time researching traditional mattresses, Tempurpedic mattresses, and latex mattresses.  The best advice I can give is that you take several weeks, visit retailers that carry the Tempurpedic mattresses, and spend a lot of time laying on them.  Just a few minutes will not be enough.  I'd recommend at least 1/2 hour for each of the models you are considering.  I spent a lot of time reviewing customer opinions from sites like epinions and others.   Tempurpedics seem to be a love-it-or-hate-it proposition. 

The main complaints I've read about are:

1) severe off gassing during the first several weeks.   Two solutions to the off gassing are b) put a cut apple with baking soda sprinkled on it on top of the mattress; b) put a few dryer sheets between the mattress cover and the mattress.

2) The mattresses require a "break-in" period and may feel firmer than the store display beds when you first get it. 

3) The mattress develops uneven "soft spots" when you lie on it, causing the body to cave into the mattress in some spots while other spots remain more supportive.  My personal theory on this is that some people purchased the lower priced models with less base layer, or that maybe Tempurpedic out sourced some poor quality base layer foam.

4) The mattress retains body heat and "sleeps hot."

The people who love their tempurpedics swear by them, say they do not develop soft spots, and they would never consider another mattress.

If you go the Tempurpedic route, purchase it from a dealer who offers a full 90 day trial period with a money back return guarantee.  Purchase a model that has two layers of convoluted base foam.  Purchase a model that has the cover specially designed to disburse heat.

I ended up going the latex mattress route.  My research indicated that a quality latex mattress was likely to be more durable than a tempurpedic mattress.  I liked the fact that the latex was not likely to off-gass (I've had mine less than a week and have not noticed any odor).  I liked the fact that latex is more breathable and does not sleep hot like memory foam.

The real difference between a latex mattress and a tempurpedic (memory foam) mattress is that with a memory foam mattress, you sink into the mattress a bit as the foam responds to your body heat.  It envelops you and cushions you without causing pressure points.  The latex mattress will have a springier, bouncier feel, and you will tend to float more on top of the mattress than sink into it.  

I would try both types of mattresses.  If you choose to go memory foam, do yourself a favor and get the Tempurpedic.  From what I've read, the other memory foams really don't come close to the tempurpedic foam.  If you go latex, then you have a bit more research in front of you. You need to decide whether you want Dunlop-processed latex (firmer, not as bouncy, not as durable) or Talalay latex (bouncier, airier, comes in a wider range of firmnesses.

If you have decided on Talalay latex, then you have to decide whether you are going to be a purist and want 100% botanical Talalay latex or if a blended latex (part botanical, part synthetic) would be fine.  Eagle went with the 100% botanical, and I went with the blended Talalay (because it's more durable).

You will also need to decide whether to buy a build-it-yourself latex bed (Eagle bought his from Flobeds, company has great reputation) and they will talk to you and help you decide what layers you need for your bed.  If they aren't right, you can exchange layers.  Flobeds also has a money back guarantee, so if you just don't like it, you can get your money back.

If you want a ready-made latex mattress, there are some choices there as well.  I went the ready made mattress route, though the company I bought from will adjust the layers if they aren't right (and I'm considering having it made more firm).
Re: Tempurpedic vs. Latex, DIY and Other High-End options
Reply #3 Oct 6, 2009 9:45 PM
Joined: Oct 6, 2009
Points: 2
Eagle & Kimberly,

This is very helpful -- sincere thanks.  I'm not that concerned about the offgassing and temperature issues.  I am concerned about durability and 'softening' over time, but it's hard to know what to make of that concern.  On the one hand, I've read through hundreds of posts on this site, and some people complain about it.  On the other hand, in the latest Consumer Reports survey, Tempurpedic had (1) the highest overall satisfaction rating and (2) the highest number of consumers who said that they would definitely buy their current mattress again.  Plenty of those people obviously haven't had their mattresses for years, but still -- the brand seems to inspire loyalty.  But the CR survey does not rate any latex mattress producers, and I haven't done any research on latex.  Are there any particular retailers you recommend?  I'd like to try both the Dunlop and the Talalay.

Thanks again,


Re: Tempurpedic vs. Latex, DIY and Other High-End options
Reply #4 Oct 6, 2009 10:06 PM
Joined: Aug 17, 2009
Points: 542
Jeff: it sounds like you have pretty well sold your self on the Tempurpedic. But if I were you, I would not jump into this thing unless the dealer your purchasing from has a 100% refund return policy with at least a 30 day window timeframe.

Unfortunately, other than a few regional dealers, it is very difficult to find a pure 100% organically grown latex mattress to try out. One company that does use dealers is Savvy Rest. You can go to their website and look at their dealer list. Possibly one of them is close to you.

Good luck.
This message was modified Oct 6, 2009 by eagle2
Re: Tempurpedic vs. Latex, DIY and Other High-End options
Reply #5 Oct 7, 2009 1:23 AM
Joined: Aug 21, 2009
Points: 486
Here are a few suggestions.  You might be able to search in your area and find a dealer who carries Land and Sky latex mattresses.  These are Dunop processed latex mattresses.  Lady Americana manufactures a latex mattress called the Sweda you may be able to find locally.  I tried one of these and i think it's Talalay.  OMI manufactures a certified organic latex mattress using Talalay latex.  Or, if you have an Ikea near you, they have a latex mattress that will give you a good feel for how latex is to lie on.

I wouldn't particularly recommend any of these mattresses to buy, just to get a feel for latex. Another option is to walk into a mattress showroom and try a Sealy Spring Free mattress - they have a latex core topped with a bunch of cheap foam you don't want, so this would just be to get an idea of how a latex mattress feels. 

If you live in Southern California, Custom Comfort in Orange County has a variety of Talalay latex mattresses you can try.  I would just search your yellow pages and do a local web search.  It may take a little digging but the likelihood is there is a business within driving distance of you with a latex mattress on a showroom floor you can try out.

Also, I would not just use this forum for researching opinions on the Tempurpedics.  I find in general this forum is very anti-Tempurpedic, but if you go to other sources, such as Epinions, you'll find a more balanced mix of responses from owners.
Re: Tempurpedic vs. Latex, DIY and Other High-End options
Reply #6 Oct 7, 2009 5:53 AM
Joined: Sep 7, 2007
Points: 476
FYI: If you've spent any time perusing this Forum you'll find that in general Tempurpedic and Sleep Number beds are not held in high regard. On the other hand a recent article in Consumer Reports noted that based on their reader survey, those who bought Tempurpedic and Sleep Number beds were the most satisfied with their purchase... Go figure!
Re: Tempurpedic vs. Latex, DIY and Other High-End options
Reply #7 Oct 7, 2009 12:00 PM
Joined: Oct 2, 2009
Points: 30
I have a DIY memory foam mattress. All my foam was made in the USA by Foamex. Foamex is the largest Amercian domestic producer of foam.My memory foam comfort layer is Venus and Aerus.It was designed specifically not to sleep hot and according to Foamex it sets the standard for enviromentally safe foam production and it does not use the chemicals that cause the most out-gassing. I would imagine they would get sued by Tempur Pedic among others if not true.Standard spring mattresses out-gas some as well as every mattresses that has flame retardent chemicals.You need a doctors note to get those 100% chemical free organic mattresses that don't outgass. But don't drop a hot light bulb or cigarette on those! Poof, mattress up in flames.

Comfort layer
2" Venus 8lbs 15 ILD (equivalent of Tempur's 7 lbs HD foam)
4" Aerus 4 lbs 12 ILD

Base Foam

3" Reflex 1.8 lbs 28 ILD
3" Reflex 1.8 lbs 35 ILD

That plus mattress cover,protector, and plywood from Home Depot to put on top of my existing box spring cost me just under $1000 for King size.

I love my mattress. It does not sleep hot nor does it smell. I did do the apple and baking soda thing just because.

I am 5'9" 260 lbs male. Maybe you need more or less support based on your size. I also live near the beach in Los Angeles. Maybe if I lived in San Antonio Texas without AC my foam mattress would sleep hot. LOL>

If you are considering mattresses in the price range of Tempur-Pedics with HD you may also want to check out Royal-Pedic's 7 Zone Latex mattres.By itself it is very firm.They sell companion toppers in the 2-5 inch range with the thickest resulting in a super plush feel. This might be my "If I won the lottery" mattress.

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