Getting a mattress is a huge investment. It’s where you’ll be spending nearly 3,000 hours a year sleeping after all! That’s why, before you decide on purchasing one, it’s important to thoroughly consider the kind of mattress you’ll be getting. The material used in its layers is an important factor to consider as these will make or break your comfort for the years to come.

When you begin looking for your perfect mattress, you’ll be sure to encounter different mattress foam types—one of which is latex. Commonly used in both all-foam and hybrid mattresses, this seemingly more eco-friendly material has become quite a popular choice for those looking for affordable yet comfortable options. But are latex mattresses really worth your dime? Read on to find out.

All about latex mattresses

White perforated latex foam commonly used for mattresses.

Natural latex is made by processing rubber tree sap into foam. Since the extraction only uses the bark without harming the plant, latex has been viewed as a natural and sustainable alternative to traditional polyfoam.

Different latex types are produced depending on how the latex is manufactured. In mattresses, you’d usually find Dunlop latex, which is on the firmer side, and the softer Talalay latex. Regardless of its type, latex, compared to other foams, are generally more responsive and bouncy. Latex mattresses also feel cool and tend to be more dense as well. 

While these might sound great, latex mattresses also come with their own set of cons as well, which might make them unsuitable for you.

Common issues when latex is used for mattresses

  1. Bounciness

    As mentioned, latex mattresses tend to be bouncier because of their rubber-like properties. However, this means that latex mattresses tend to lack good motion isolation properties, so you’d feel movement from the other end of the bed easily. If you’re the type who sleeps with a restless partner who tosses and turns at night, this might not be the right mattress material for you.

  2. Not body-hugging

    Because it’s firmer and denser, latex mattresses can’t hug your body. Whether you sleep on your back, sides, or on your stomach, the material won’t be able to adjust to your form and give you comfort where you need it. Instead, it gives a generalized compression, none of that cloud-like cradling feeling you might get from other foam types.

  3. Less pressure relief

    A good foam mattress properly distributes your weight, allowing your body to sink deeply and evenly while providing ample support. While some latex foams might be able to distribute your body evenly, their firmness still won’t allow you to get that deep compression to relieve sore spots.A person sitting on a latex mattress.

  4. Allergy concerns

    While latex is also a decent hypoallergenic option for most, those with latex allergies should steer clear from latex mattresses. If you’re planning on getting a latex mattress, better be sure that your body won’t have any negative reaction from the material first.

  5. Not 100% natural

    Most latex mattresses are advertised as an all-natural option, but the fact is, even natural latex is processed with some chemicals needed to solidify sap. Not to mention, there are synthetic latex foams as well that are completely not eco-friendly. So if you’re purchasing one for sustainability reasons, read the fine print of the product first.

  6. High cost

    When compared side by side with other mattress types, latex mattresses are without a doubt more expensive than most. It can range up to twice the price of most memory foam mattresses. This is expected, considering the process and equipment needed to manufacture latex. If you have a tight budget, consider looking for other alternatives instead.

  7. Heavy weight

    Because of its density, latex foam mattresses can be particularly heavy. This unwieldiness makes it a struggle to set up, especially if you’re getting queen-sized or king-sized mattresses. This makes it not the best choice for those residing in flats and condos, renters who move from one place to another, or those who love rearranging their furniture to give their space a makeover. Not to mention, its weight can also add costs to shipping and might oblige you to shell out even more for a white glove delivery service that can help you set it up in your room.

    A man setting up a mattress.

  8. Strong scent

    Latex can come with a strong rubber-like scent in the beginning. This may or may not dissipate depending on the quality of your mattress. If you’re one with a strong and sensitive nose, this can be a deal-breaker for you.

The better alternative to latex mattress

Considering all that, what’s the better choice for sleepers who want comfort and affordability? The answer to that is memory foam

Invented by NASA way back in the 70s, memory or viscoelastic foam was once used to help cushion and protect pilots from crashes. Because of its groundbreaking comfort, it eventually became a widely used material for mattresses.

What makes memory foam great

  1. Affordability

    Unlike expensive latex foams, memory foams give you optimum comfort without breaking the bank. It’s significantly cheaper because the material is easier to manufacture at scale.

  2. Great motion transfer

    Memory foam is also far less bouncy and less firm. This makes it comfortable enough while minimizing motion transfer. With a memory foam mattress, you can say goodbye to sleepless nights! A high-quality one will prevent you from feeling anything even if someone tosses and turns on the other end of the bed!

    Memory foam conforming to the shape of a person’s hand.

  3. Great pressure relief

    With its body-hugging capabilities, it’s great at reaching your sore spots. As this top-tier cushioning curves around your body, it reduces the pressure around areas like your shoulders and hips. This way, you wake up completely refreshed and free of body aches.

  4. Body-hugging

    Another thing that makes memory foam uniquely better than other mattress foam types is its ability to conform to your body shape. Sleeping on memory foam feels like you’re melting comfortably into your bed no matter your sleeping position.

Disadvantages of memory foam mattresses

  1. Temporary off-gassing

    Of course, like other foam types, memory foam comes with its set of cons too. Like latex mattresses, they can emit a strong odor. This happens right after you remove their vacuum-sealed packaging. But don’t worry—this is only temporary! This off-gassing will only last for a few hours or days so simply open your windows to let it air out.

  2. Less breathable

    Traditional memory foams tend to trap heat, so they’re not a great choice for people who sleep hot. However, nowadays, some manufacturers have found a way to diminish this. Open-celled or gel-infused memory foams, in particular, have heat-dissipating properties that prevent you from sleeping hot. 

    Apart from that, other companies have innovated their own heat-dissipating memory foams for their mattresses. Take Emma and their Diamond Hybrid Mattress for one. Crafted with Diamond Degree Technology, the mattress’ memory foam layer is infused with graphite to not only alleviate the heat but also actively cool you down, lowering your body temperature by 1.5°C!

    Aside from opting for modern memory foam beds, another easy fix is investing in a hybrid mattress. Layering these memory foam types with pocket springs, hybrid mattresses are your best bet for maximum breathability!

    A hybrid memory foam mattress.

Find the perfect mattress

Every investment needs some careful consideration. Luckily, a number of mattress companies now provide risk-free trials so you can test for yourself if the mattress matches your unique sleeping preferences. You can check out our Top 5 Mattress Comparison Chart to discover the best mattress in Singapore.

We recommend checking out our top-rated mattress, the Emma Diamond Hybrid Mattress—the perfect choice for those looking for a premium memory foam hybrid mattress. Infused with Diamond Degree technology, this mattress dissipates extra body heat, maintaining the optimal temperature for deep sleep.

Emma Diamond Hybrid Mattress and Emma Original Hybrid Mattress side by side.

For a more budget-friendly option, you can also try the Emma Original Hybrid. Made with their proprietary Airgocell foam and individually wrapped pocket springs, this memory foam hybrid mattress is great at isolating motion and facilitating airflow. 

Ready to experience the premium comfort lent by memory foam hybrid mattresses? Put your worries to sleep! Experience superior motion isolation, pressure-relieving contouring, and cooling comfort with Emma’s 200-night trial and hassle-free returns. Save an extra 5% off when you check it out with the code “BestMattress5”!


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