Buying an organic latex mattress: FAQ’s

General Organic Organic Mattresses

Many of us did not grow up sleeping on a latex mattress, let alone an organic latex mattress.  To learn more about this supremely comfortable and sustainable way of sleeping, below you’ll find here the answers to some of the most frequently asked questions.

What is Latex?

Latex is made from a milky white liquid that is found just beneath the bark of the Hevea brasilienesis rubber tree. A small strip of bark is cut from the tree, and the milky white liquid is collected in a container. The same tree can be tapped again, so rubber is a very sustainable crop. It can destabilize quickly, so makers of organic latex often have it molded into sheets on the same day to avoid the use of chemicals.

If you buy GOLS-certified latex, the mattress will be organic, pure, and free of toxic chemicals

Why should I buy an organic latex mattress?

Latex mattresses have many advantages, especially if you choose organic latex. If you buy GOLS-certified latex, the bed will be organic, pure, and free of toxic chemicals. Also, many latex mattresses are customizable and made up of components. Because of this flexibility of construction,  you can customize each side’s firmness, and both you and your partner will get your best sleep. Finally, a latex mattress constructed of several parts is much easier to move, as you can move each piece individually. Latex mattresses excel in providing support and providing a cushiony layer where your body needs it. Latex is durable and long-lasting. Air circulation means that you are able to sleep cooler. Finally, it is naturally dust-mite resistant, anti-bacterial, and insect-repellent.

What are the cons of choosing a latex mattress?

Some people are allergic to latex. (Less than 1% of the world’s population has a true allergy to pure rubber.) Also, some people are more comfortable with a spring-type mattress, as that is what they are used to sleeping on.

How do latex mattresses compare to other types of mattresses?

  • Latex mattresses are typically quieter than other mattresses
  • They are more customizable than other mattresses (unless very high end)
  • Latex mattresses are typically easier to move (if they come in layers)
  • Organic latex is quite durable 

What is blended latex?

Blended latex, as you might expect, is a mixture of natural and synthetic materials. The ratio of natural to synthetic varies depending on the manufacturer. It is usually less expensive than organic latex. The Clean Bedroom does not sell any mattresses made of blended latex.

Are latex mattresses comfortable?  Are they suitable for side sleepers?

Yes, some people say they are like sleeping on a cloud with support underneath. With a firm or medium supporting layer covered with a soft top layer, an organic latex mattress will conform to your body shape while still providing optimum support. 

What should I look for in a latex mattress?

Pure GOLS-certified organic latex is the purest latex as well as the best quality. It is best to look for latex that has no chemicals or foam added. Be careful with blended latex if you are looking for an organic or chemical-free mattress. Finally, customizability is also a big plus.

Latex mattresses can often be customized by side or with different firmnesses for each layer. Also, you are able to reconfigure the bed if it does not work for you. Our Obasan line is a good example of the customizability provided by latex mattresses.

How do you meet flame-resistant standards without the use of harsh chemicals?

In organic latex mattresses, wool is typically quilted into the cover. Wool is a natural flame retardant. Wool has many other benefits as well. It helps to regulate temperature which means you can sleep cooler and drier. It is renewable, breathable, and naturally dust-mite resistant, as well as providing a soft layer for the comfort of your mattress.

Do latex mattresses cause back pain?

Back pain is often associated with a lack of support. Some latex mattresses allow you to choose your firmness to get the optimum amount of support. So while latex is sometimes thought to be ‘soft’ because it conforms to your body, you can choose the firmness you need to offer your back, as well as other parts of your body, proper support.

Can you use a latex mattress on a platform bed?

Yes, you can! However, there needs to be proper support to ensure adequate circulation as well as support. There should be a certain amount of space between slats. Additionally, there must be room to allow for circulation but not too much space between slats to adequately support the mattress. Queen and King sizes should have center support under the bed.

Is it acceptable to place it on the floor?

Placing a latex mattress on the floor would not allow for proper air circulation and would be detrimental to the mattress. It would also probably negate the warranty.

What is GOLS-certified latex?

GOLS is a global certification. GOLS is an acronym standing for Global Organic Latex Standard. Both materials and procedures must be environmentally and socially responsible to receive this certification.  The process is certified from the field all the way through the production of certified items.  

How long do latex mattresses last?

The latex mattresses we carry have a 15 – 20-year warranty.

Are latex mattresses foldable?

Yes, they are very flexible.  Because of this, most latex mattresses work well with adjustable beds. This also makes them easier to move.

Do latex mattresses smell?

Organic latex should have very little odor if any at all.  It is non-toxic and chemical-free.

There are so many different layers – do you glue them together?

Gluing the layers together is unnecessary and would corrupt the non-toxic, chemical-free nature of an organic mattress.  The layers lay on top together and stay secure,  as they are typically inside a zippered cover and are flush with each other. Some companies wrap each latex layer individually to reduce shifting.

We are available for consultation and any questions you may have about organic latex mattresses.  Come see us in a showroom to try out a latex mattress, or contact us by phone, email, or website chat.


First published February 13, 2021