The dangers of mattresses off-gassing are talked about far more now than when my husband and I got married and bought our first mattress in 2003. There was so much we just didn’t know as we spent hours agonizing over making the best decision. Sleep is so important! Fortunately, there are many options for natural and organic mattresses on the market today and I’ve done some of the leg work for you! Keep reading to see the list of natural mattress companies I’ve compiled over my years of research.
Our Newlywed Mattress Purchase
My husband-to-be had waited to propose until he had his first job, and in fact, sharing that exciting news with me was the beginning of the proposal. We were just out of college, and he promised to provide and care for me as we began our lives together.
A few months later, the wrecking ball hit his company. The end result was a jail sentence for his boss and catastrophic closure of the business, which makes a great story to tell at parties but was certainly a crisis at the time.
I was applying for teaching jobs, but the market was bloated at the time, so in June when we had to nail down an apartment to live in after we got married in July, we were two very young adults with no jobs.
I can still remember the exact place on the freeway when the call came in on my old Sprint flip phone with the broken arm. It was my eventual boss offering me a job at a Catholic school, teaching third grade. We had just left our umpteenth apartment complex of the week, a beautiful one that we knew was way out of reach for our current, ahem, salaries.
I felt like the Holy Spirit Himself had buzzed, offering us a new lease on life.
We leased a very inexpensive apartment, used rabbit ears and free dialup Internet through our university logons, and were overwhelmed with gratitude when we saw the final tally of our monetary wedding gifts.
My husband didn’t end up getting a job until October, so our first few months of marriage were very simple and sparse. We used that wedding money to buy exactly two new pieces of furniture: a couch and a mattress.
We took days to shop, laying down on mattresses in store after store (no jobs, remember?), wondering how we would genuinely like it for 8 hours at a time (no kids yet, so that was realistic!). We agonized over making the perfect decision, and we spent about $7-800 on each item, so not cheap, but not luxurious by any means.
Amazingly, we still have and love both items. It’s good to make a big decision and get it right!
I’m not sure how we lucked out so much with our mattress purchase, really, because we have truly loved our mattress. Whenever we go to visit family and have to sleep on someone else’s (usually old) mattress, we can’t wait to get home to our bed, a pillowtop Serta queen mattress with partner disturbance protection, amazing edge support, and a little stuffed sheep that came with it. (That became the kids’ toy pretty quickly, but the mattress was ours, and we cherished it.)
Our babies slept in that bed with us, we nursed sicknesses in that bed, and we even brought it with us when we lived 5 months with my in-laws, and we stored the mattress that had been in the room they were graciously letting us use.
But there was so much I didn’t know back then.
Is Your Mattress Off-Gassing Toxins?
We tested a LOT of mattresses. We balanced cost, brand, delivery charges, pillow top vs. individual firmness vs. memory foam, interlocked or individually coiled springs, who liked firm vs. soft and whether we could agree on one style…but there was one major category we completely missed.
What’s IN that mattress?
Because we were shopping in 2003, I now know that there’s a decent chance that our perfect mattress was laced with PBDEs, a class of environmentally persistent flame retardant chemicals now banned as health hazards.
Polybrominated diphenyl ethers might have protected our mattress from a “flashover” in a house fire, but they also made the dust in our house toxic, increasing our risk of thyroid disease, infertility, and birth defects along with learning disabilities, behavioral issues, and delayed puberty onset in our children. (Four children. We didn’t have the infertility issues…hopefully they don’t either!) PBDEs are persistent in the environment, which means they get into groundwater and the air (and our bodies) and stay there for a long time.
They are particularly toxic to developing brains, are found in human breastmilk, and tend to be measured in higher concentrations in children than adults. I’m picturing all the times my infants slept on my bed right now, and my breath gets caught in my throat.
And that foam that made wonderful edge support, that we smashed with a bedrail so that our older babies could lay right up against it and not fall out of bed? Don’t even get me started on how that crushing probably increased the toxic off-gassing-directly-into-my-babies’-faces that was going on there.
This is NOT what we should have spent our precious wedding money on.
It makes me so angry that those chemicals were in my mattress, that I didn’t know it, that the government mandates that mattresses have to pass flame tests and doesn’t tell companies they can’t just use the cheapest hazardous chemical they can find!
We were real adults trying to make good decisions, but there was so much ignorance. We just didn’t know what to ask. (Wish I had read my own post on flame retardants in mattresses on that old dial-up connection…)
My Advice to Newlyweds in the Bedroom
Since we got married right out of college, we were the trailblazers among our friends and watched many of them enter into engagements and marriage in the years following our own wedding. I was always brimful with advice for happy new couples, including what to put on wedding registries and what to buy for their first home together.
I always said that investing in their marriage bed, both physically and metaphorically, was the most important thing they could do for each other.
A good night’s rest would help them have more emotional stores to be civil to each other on a daily basis, and a comfortable, brand new mattress was paramount to making that happen. Marriage and family would happen in that bed, and I’d tell any new couple that they should spend serious time choosing the perfect mattress and not worry about spending money on a new one. It should be new for their posture and new as a symbol of their union, not some old mattress that one of them had slept on for years before their wedding.
In other words, my advice to newlyweds was always to buy a good mattress.
I would still give the same advice – you should love being in your bed (together!) as a new couple – but I’d also be the voice of caution about flame retardants, foam, infertility, children’s brains and the importance of the mattress investment for the whole family’s health.
Nothing is simple in this convoluted, fallen world we live in.
A good mattress and a good night’s rest are still important, and the big box brands we bounced around on ten years ago still aren’t going to offer a non-toxic night’s sleep. So what do we do?
My Introduction to Natural Mattresses
When we moved to our current home three years ago, we of course brought our wedding mattress with us, had a first grader on an old, old, old hand-me-down twin mattress, a 3yo in a toddler bed on an old hand-me-down mattress, and a baby in a pack-n-play (and quickly got him onto an organic, non-toxic crib mattress thanks to my gig here at Kitchen Stewardship®).
I knew that even though we swapped out our plastic food storage containers for glass, bought organic meat and drank from stainless steel water bottles, the family was spending half our lives on likely-toxic materials, and it slowly drove me nuts.
My oldest son actually started a weird throat-clearing/little cough thing soon after we moved into the house, the kind of thing that happens quietly every ten minutes that moms worry about, and it lasted pretty much until the school year ended. I never figured out what the cause was but always wondered if the school had something to do with it.
He was the next to get a better mattress, a twin Naturepedic brand that wasn’t cheap, but I was done compromising on safety and health in our sleep. Who knows if it was related, but that cough never came back.
Our daughter slept on that darn hand-me-down crib mattress in the toddler bed until Gabriel was born this fall, when it was passed to 3-year-old Jonathan. We knew we needed to buy her a new mattress, and she was going to have the double bed that would be given to overnight visitors, so it was the biggest investment yet.
I’d been researching mattresses for three years and had a massive 20-page document on my computer with my findings, including a somewhat local company that could make them without flame retardants with a doctor’s note. With a new baby coming any day, a new family doctor, and the fact that I’m terrible at making decisions, we realized we wouldn’t be able to turn around on that issue before Gabe was born, so we set her up on the old twin mattress on the floor and called it good temporarily.
Then her cough started, and I had that déjà vu feeling.
We yanked that mattress and let her sleep on a folded up adult sleeping bag with a twin mattress pad and sheets, a DIY mattress of sorts, like a pallet on the floor. It was fine for a 6-year-old, and we knew that as soon as I could handle it after Gabe, we would be mattress shopping for real.
I spent most of October shopping for as much safe sleep stuff as I could without buying the actual mattress.
Our oldest got a new organic blanket for his bed, the 6-year-old girl got a pink clearanced organic blanket for her new bed-to-be from Organic Grace (no longer in stock, but they have others), the baby got these organic crib sheets and the mattress pad I told you about HERE, and Mighty Nest sent us a wool puddle pad while Healthy Child sent a Naturepedic mattress pad to review.
Where to Find a Non-Toxic Mattress
When I do “shopping” like this, there’s so much research to be done, both on materials safety and product satisfaction. I read a lot of web pages, a lot of reviews, and a lot of company about pages, and I take a ton of notes (hence the 20-page document). You don’t want to see the whole thing, trust me, but here’s a glimpse of the mattress companies I had collected over the years via IRL friend recommendations, readers, and Internet searching.
I tried to list the available materials for mattresses. Seems like most “safe, non-toxic mattresses” use organic cotton, wool and latex, so you’ll see that a lot. Only certain materials can pass the federal flame retardant regulations… Pricing changes so much that I don’t want to include that info, but hopefully you can find the best available!
Our Favorite Non-Toxic Mattress:
Naturepedic all the way! They offer free shipping and free returns, 120 days to try the mattress, and a number of style lines to choose from. Their EOS mattress won the Good Housekeeping “Best Sustainable Mattress” award in 2021!
I’ve got 3 kids sleeping on Naturepedic (or have been over the years; no one is on a crib mattress anymore, boo hoo!!), and I love that they were the first (or one of) in the industry to get it right about non-toxicity. We more recently added a Happsy brand mattress and are thrilled with it! Happsy brand is owned by Naturepedic but offers a simpler line of mattresses that is more affordable. (Free shipping and returns up to 120 days, plus a 20-year warranty! Wow!)
The other 2 beds in the house are Intellibed, which is also very good for back pain. They’ve done their research! (Get 10% off with my special link.)
More on Finding a Non-Toxic Mattress (Expert Interview)
If you can’t see the video above, click Non-Toxic Mattress Expert Interview to view it directly on YouTube.
Here are the others I have dug into over the years, many great options here!
- My Green Mattress – Organic cotton, Joma wool, Tallalay, and natural latex. Multiple options with a huge price range. I think you can visit Quality Sleep Shop in the Chicago area to test them out if you’re nearby. Use the code Green125 for $25 off twin or larger mattresses or $20 off the Emily organic crib mattress.
- Plush Beds – I received this super review from a reader: “A few years ago, I did a ton of research on mattresses and we ordered this one…We seriously sleep so well now and I love that it’s totally organic with no off-gassing. And believe me… I haven’t been sorry to spend the money and we actually are pretty poor.” Thanks for sharing, Diane! With that link you should get a $50 gift card if you purchase a mattress and keep it after the 100 day trial period. Hooray!
- FloBeds – organic and conventional latex, organic wool, Talalay latex available.
- Berkeley Ergonomics – Latex, Plein Air wool, cotton – the mattresses open with a zipper so you can see what’s in there. US made. Find them at The Mattress & Sleep Company in Canada.
- The Natural Sleep Store – Latex, organic wool, organic cotton, futon mattresses, carrying Bella Sera, Green Sleep, Savvy Rest, Sueno, Eco Baby crib mattresses and more brands.
- Open Your Eyes Bedding – totally DIY – twist buckwheat hulls into special fabric
- Soaring Heart – organic wool, organic cotton, latex
- Lifekind – custom-made organic wool, natural latex, rubber
- NaturalBed.com (formerly TheNaturalBedStore.com) – latex, organic cotton, organic wool, have adjustable beds
- DIY Natural Bedding – Choose your own fill, cover, and DIY it. Natural latex, wool, organic cotton
- Nest Bedding – Bamboo, “natural memory foam” (???) (60% natural plant oils), silica fire blocker, also carries organic cotton/organic wool/latex mattresses
- Ikea may have a few that would fit the bill made with latex, wool and cotton, but you’d have to make some phone calls to find out if they’re treated with additional flame retardant chemicals (and which ones). Quite a few of their “latex” mattresses, including the crib mattress, also contained polyurethane foam; read the product descriptions. Usually foam indicates a need for chemical flame retardants.
- Pure Baby and Child – sells the Coco mat crib mattress and pure latex
- Lullaby Earth – Naturepedic’s line of kid’s and crib mattresses
- Many people opt for a plain cotton futon mattresses, especially for young children. Here are some ideas on how to do that or DIY.
- More good ideas in the comments at Kelly’s mattress post (although I’ve referenced most of them except the small, local-only niche recommendations).
- Other brands you might look into that look like the right stuff: Natura, Moonlight Slumber (for kids and cribs), Nook Sleep (babies, cribs, up to full size)
- No Feathers Please is an interesting site I found for blankets, sheets, and pillows (naturally made but without down)
- White Lotus Home – I haven’t tested this one, but a long-time reader has used this brand for two decades and wanted to make sure I looked into it! Dunlop latex, organic wool, cotton, “evergreen foam” – can buy parts and DIY, tons of choices for mattresses, from “green” cotton with boric powder flame retardant to organic cotton/wool/latex to an organic cotton mattress with no flame retardant for which you need a doc’s prescription. Too many to list!
- Essentia has organic latex and memory foam mattresses and pillows.
- Wholetones: This is really a side idea to help you get a bit more sleep. This device helps you to stay within your restful state instead of waking up in the middle of the night.
- WakeWell an adjustable non-toxic pillow that my husband loves!
The trouble with ordering a mattress online can be the inability to test it out. Some of these shops have storefronts, so if you’re in the area, lucky you! Also, many offer generous return policies so you really can test it out for a whole month, and if you don’t like it, send it back.
For your research, The Mattress Underground is a decent source of info and Mamavation has an incredible post explaining all the ins and outs and certifications.
If anyone has a mattress from one of the companies recommended above, I’d love to hear your experience in the comments!
Are Used Mattresses Safer?
I used to hopefully believe that perhaps older items, like secondhand PJs, may have already off-gassed all their toxins. In reality, it’s more likely that the flame retardants and foam are both breaking down as the item ages and may off-gas even worse. Serious bummer. Here’s a little more about that (also a good company from which to buy an organic mattress).
I wish I could have tried out all those mattresses above to give you a real breakdown of how they feel, not only how they’re made, but it’s not as easy to have 30 mattresses as it is to review over 120 natural sunscreens or a handful of reusable sandwich bags!
69 thoughts on “How to Find an Affordable Non-Toxic Mattress”
Does intellibed still use the material you had in question? Who has tested them to verify they are non toxic and no or low voc? If they use foam, wouldn’t it be toxic if foam is a toxic product and therefore off gas? Do they use questionable materials?
Hi Grenna, Intelllibed says on their website that they use a silica based flame retardant, but I’d call the company to double check that there’s no antimony anymore before ordering one. They are CertiPUR-US tested for low-voc. Polyurethane foam can be a problem on it’s own, but the CertiPUR label means it’s a safer foam. For some people, a low-voc foam with no chemical flame retardants is safe enough compared to other mattresses and others choose to avoid foam entirely. It depends on what your budget allows and what you’re comfortable with. I hope you’re able to find a mattress that works for you!
Oh the days we used to (as a culture) stuff our mattress with straw ourselves. There must be a way.
One of the companies on this post sells the supplies to make your own mattresses stuffed with natural materials like buckwheat hulls. Similar “naturalness” but more comfortable I assume!
I just want to point out that fiberglass in memory foam mattresses is a BIG deal… people have had to move out of their homes because the fiberglass particles got into their HVAC systems and was spread through their entire house and caused eye irritation, skin rashes, and breathing complications. It’s for the reasons that I thoroughly researched memory foam mattresses that don’t contain fiberglass, and other harmful materials, before buying mattress for my kid.
I hate wasting good research so I put my findings in a table and posted it on my personal blog for others to use, check it out and maybe update this article with the dangers of fiberglass! https://www.jsnowcreations.com/?p=1995
Thanks and have a great day!
Thank you – that’s an incredible resource! Since I’m already avoiding memory foam for other reasons, my hope would be that fiberglass wouldn’t be an issue. Sure does make sense that it shouldn’t be in a mattress, yikes!
I’m starting to research non-toxic mattresses. Thank you for all of the information and comments and responses!
1)Do you have any opinions about Luuf matresses?
2) Do you have any opinions about Avocado Green Matresses?
Hi Jennifer – I wish I could have tested all these brands but I haven’t gotten my hands on either of those, sorry! 🙂 Katie
I’m glad this post has helped you as you start your research!
1) Luuf mattresses aren’t organic and they use polyurethane foam so I personally would pass on that company and keep looking.
2) Avocado Green is Made Safe certified and that means they meet pretty strict regulations regarding off-gassing and ingredients. *thumbs-up*
Hope that helps Jennifer!
I just clicked on the green mattress link and didn’t get the $125 off added. Is there a code to try? Thanks
I looked into it and it said our coupon code was expired! We’ll get in touch with the company and see if we can renew it. Sorry about that! I’ll let you know what happens.
Jamie the link should work with the coupon now! Sorry about that!
What do you think of this company? sleeponlatex.com
I haven’t had any experience with them and they’re not a company Katie has researched yet, but there are a couple comments below recommending them and from a quick look at their website they look clean. All natural materials and no flame retardants!
Have you heard of Purple mattresses? The people who invented the technology behind Intellibed started Purple so it’s mostly the same but much more affordable (from a friend who worked there). Their website says it’s non-toxic polyurethane foam with clay flame retardant, but isn’t polyurethane toxic or was it just the chemical flame retardants that were the problem? I really want to get one for my daughter who is sleeping on an organic cotton futon from several years ago that is not supportive enough.
Sorry your question got missed Lindsey. In general yes, it’s the polyurethane itself that’s toxic in addition to the additional flame retardants required. What did you end up deciding?
I purchased a baby crib mattress for my grandson–Babyletto–based on research from this website. I don’t see that brand on your list from this article. Bummer. I’m hoping it is still a safe option??? Please advise. Thx
I’m so sorry this comment got missed last fall! Babyletto is on the list of recommended crib mattresses here still: https://www.kitchenstewardship.com/safe-crib-mattress-may-prevent-sids/
Thank you so much!
Hi I have done some research on Swiss Dream Beds and they look very appealing and the reviews are excellent. Unfortunately i have not tried a bed yet but will be ordering one sokn. You can have a firmer sleep on one side and flip mattress over for less firm. Everything is said to be very healthy, no off gassing products and all natural.
We purchased a mattress from Ikea 6-7 years ago; I asked if they had organic (they didn’t) and expressed my concerns with the flame retardants. The salesman showed us one made of horsehair/ wool – it’s been very comfortable and was a bit more expensive but there were no odors and we’ve done well with it!
Another vote for Sleep On Latex! I’ve had my bed from them for a year now, and love it. They are one of the most affordable companies and have no questionable components in their mattresses. After hours upon hours upon hours of research, they were my hands down top pick. My second choice would have been Open Your Eyes, but we cosleep so they were out for me.
I was wondering if you were happy with the Naturepedic Mattress that you bought for your son? We just ordered two, and while they are quite firm, my kids seem fine on them. I was wondering if you had any thoughts since you have had one for some time.
I feel exactly the same as you Carlin! They are firm, and I don’t know that *I* would like them, but both my boys sleep great.
This is about an ADULT mattress: I have just purchased (and awaiting delivery) of a Hypnos mattress and and adjustable divan queen bed from Art Van Pure Sleep stores in Michigan. Hypnos is an extremely old and well-established UK company that makes beds the old fashioned (read European) way. All hand-tufted stitching, wool, horsehair, and upwards of 2000 individually cotton wrapped coils and a layer of microcoils. It is not labeled as completely organic…but pretty darn close.
I napped on it for over an hour in the showroom after close to a year of research! I KNEW I did not want to go with one of the all latex “organic” options made here in the U.S. because honestly I did not want a firm feel. I have laid on a temperpedic, and the like, and thought I’d be more comfortable on a concrete slab! I don’t care what salesmen say about it EVENTUALLY conforming to my body….I want to feel like I’m sleeping on a soft fluffy cloud from DAY ONE! Also, I can’t think all that is healthy but I still wanted the feel of a traditional innerspring mattress.
I am in my 40’s and although I do not have any major muscular or bone issues, or other ailments, and I am of slender-average weight and height, my body just responds better to a soft, plush mattress. I too bought in to the whole “firmer is better” routine we were all brainwashed with, and I am proud to be free of that mindset. My old mattress had the whole pillow top thing going on which is misleading. That pillow top stuffed with chemical-laden foam does not make the brick of a mattress underneath it any softer after about 3 minutes! Not too mention I had it on a tall sleigh bed so the added pillow top meant I had to take a running start to jump up into my bed every night.
My advice is do your research, some tried and true UK mattress companies are not only offering a portion of their lines at U.S. Stores, but are also opening up manufacturing here as well. I believe Hypnos has a mfg plant in Tennessee (?). There are others as well such as DUX, Vi-Spring, and Hastens which are all similar to Hypnos but MUCH pricier for the most part. Oh and Hypnos has the Queen of England’s seal of approval (or whatever it’s called) and reportedly ALL the royal households are furnished with nothing but Hypnos beds. Because this concept of bed is fairly new to the U.S. Market and hardly anyone seems to know we have these safer options, there are not many actual reviews to be found, but you can find plenty of info on the Internet and YouTube.
Again, I did countless hours of research before trying and purchasing this bed. If anyone is interested in an update let me know and I will write one after I’ve received my bed in two weeks (beginning of October, 2016).
Would love to hear an update on your new mattress
Hi Vicki, thanks for asking! YES I absolutely LOVE my new Hypnos Alexandra Plush mattress. I also purchased the adjustable base offered and I’m so happy I did. I’ve noticed if I have the foot raised just a bit, it takes pressure off the lower back. Hmmmm, who knew?! As I said in my post, I don’t have any major structural or muscular issues but did notice some aches and pains from my old mattress that have COMPLETELY disappeared with this softer mattress. AND, I used to wake up stuffy with a bit of a sinus-type headache, which I never attributed to chemical sensitivity but again, since I’ve had this new mattress, I’ve had NO headaches in the morning whatsoever. I could go on and on but I’ll just say it’s the best decision I’ve made in years. It was pricey, but sooooo worth it. The queen with adjustable base was a bit over $5000. But it is worth that and more to fall asleep quickly, not toss and turn, and wake up rested and not needing an Advil for aches and pains!
Does anyone know anything about Brentwood Home? I was thinking of going with them but I haven’t seen them listed on any of the non-toxic lists even though they’ve had CertiPur and GOLS certifications. Any help is much appreciated. Trying to find the healthiest, safest mattress is no easy task. Then there is the whole: is wool safe, is memory foam supportive enough…..the list goes on….a bit overwhelming. I wish there was a non-toxic spring mattress solution. TIA
I was wondering the same thing. Brentwood Home is local to me (even though they don’t have a showroom), so I thought about buying from them. I only have their wedge pillow, which is made entirely from really hard foam — too hard to actually sleep on, which was my original intention; I now use it as a back support while reading in bed.
I’d like to know more about how Brentwood Home compares as well. They have some very important certifications (GOTS, CertiPUR-US, GREENGUARD Gold) but sometimes those certifications are diversions from other unhealthy components.
I feel if a mattress company is unwilling to share the results of their CFR-1632 and CFR-1633 test results you should not buy from them. Often mattress companies will (legally) hide the chemicals they use to pass their flame tests under the Proprietary Materials and Technologies clause. The full test report should disclose what flame reatrdants (if any) are in the mattress. Here is a list of the 7 most commonly used flame retardants and their health concerns. https://openyoureyesbedding.com/blogs/news/how-to-live-with-flame-retardants
Did you ever do your thorough review of Intellibed? I can’t seem to find it anywhere on your website.
Hi Tori – No, I never did. I discovered that intelliBED used antimony, an ingredient that is quite questionable. I did a ton of research and talking with the company and never came up with a suitable opinion on them. We still enjoy our mattress, and I still firmly believe it’s better than 95-98% of the mattresses available out there, but I’m not sure I could stand behind it 100%. Hope that helps! 🙂 Katie
My 3 year old son has had nose bleeds every since we got him a new mattress last year. We have an air purifier & humidifier in his room, use organic cotton sheets, and he eats mostly organic foods & vitamins. But over the past year, he’s had numerous cases of eye infection, pink eye, coughs, runny nose, and allergy-related symptoms. After doing some research, I realized it might be the mattress that is causing all these health issues. I finally purchased a latex mattress from My Green Mattress today!
Thank you for putting together this extensive list of organic/natural bedding! I will continue to refer to this list as I eventually change all of our beds and furniture.
I bought a Berkeley Ergonomics coil mattress and deeply REGRET it.
1. It contains a LOT of SYNTHETIC POLYPROPYLENE. The Polypropylene covers all the coils in the mattress. It is not a small amount.
2. There are 23 chemicals in the latex. 22 of the chemicals deemed “moderately problematic, but acceptable for use” and one chemical deemed “unknown”.
Here’s a link to the Material Health Certificate indicating the chemicals; https://issuu.com/mhc8/docs/radiu_natur_silve_mhc2442_2015-05-2
It is my recommendation that anyone thinking of buying a Berkeley Ergonomics mattress ask to see the CURRENT two-page Material Health Certificate, like shown in this link, so you can see how many chemicals you would be sleeping on.
The bed is not comfortable either;
3. It’s HOT even though the sales man told me it would not be.
4. I think just 2″ of latex laying loosely over coils is not enough. It seems very loosy-goosy, and does not seem to have any strength. No way could I let a child jump up and down on it like we did when we were kids.
5. The very thick quilted top matted down very quickl. It does not have any foam in it, so once it mats down, that’s it.
6. The thick quilted top is SO thick you can’t feel the sensation of the latex at all. Tops on other manufactures beds I recall were thinner and more stretchy and you could feel the bouncy, rubbery, supportive feel of the latex. My Berkeley Ergonomics bed has none of these characteristics. I will never buy a bed with a thick quilted top again. This was a HUGE mistake and one of the things I hate the most about my bed.
7. I also think the bed is too expensive for what it is. We can all see how much a slab of 2″ latex is on line, and if they were to get their cotton, wool and coils in the USA, it would keep the cost down.
When I found out that my bed was not “organic” like the sales man told me, and that it contained synthetic Polypropylene I checked all the Berkeley Ergonomic dealers web sites and I could NOT find one that disclosed the synthetic Polypropylene. At the same time I noticed they were presenting the mattress as “All natural”, “Organic, all natural” and alike.
I think its extremely misleading to refer to these coil mattresses as “all natural” or “Organic, all natural” etc.
The owners of Berkeley Ergonomics are horrible to deal with too.
Buying my Berkeley Ergo mattress was the worse purchase I have ever made and I regret it deeply.
I will be replacing my Berkeley Ergonomics mattress with an all latex mattress from one of three places; SleepEZ, Sleeponlatex.com, or sleepingorganic.com. And for SURE I am getting the thinnest most stretchy top fabric possible.
Thanks for a great post! We just bought a latex mattress from sleeponlatex.com. I haven’t received the mattress yet, but the company seems to be pretty great! Their mattresses are made from 100% natural latex (Oeko-Tex certified), 100% natural wool, and organic cotton. We got a 9 inch thick king for about $1,500. They also offer free shipping and free returns! I would be interested to hear your thoughts in case there was anything I missed and this company really isn’t s good as it sounds.
Do you like your sleeponlatex.com (now SleepEZ) bed after all these years? I’m considering one for my son now.
The mattress is still great, but pretty much impossible to move (we had a king and it weighed like a million pounds and had absolutely no rigidity or real way to hold it), so we left it at my MIL’s when we moved cross country. We still sleep on it when we visit and it is very comfortable, but due to how hard they are to move, we ended up getting Avocado Green Mattresses for ourselves and our daughter after we moved and I truly adore those and would probably go with them again over sleeponlatex.
Thank you for your response. I’ve ordered a SleepEZ mattress for my son (before your response about Avocado Green) and it’ll get here next week. I am praying he loves it and it helps him get better sleep!
I have a buckwheat mattress and buckwheat pillow from Open Your Eyes and we have enjoyed it. We’re moving though now and don’t need it anymore. It’s a full and squeaky clean. I’d like to sell it and would be willing to take a loss since it’s not new anymore. We paid over $800 with shipping. Please reply if anyone is interested! 🙂
How about branching off into safe furniture & stuffed animals & such?! I have heard that everything involving foam/stuffing of some type has flame retardants in it. That would include car seats (the padding around your baby), swings, car interior’s, mini foam beds made for dolls, the list goes on and on. Made me a freak for some time as I started to stress over everything :/ How about the foam pad underneath new flooring? Gross-ness everywhere! Thank you for the healthy bed links! Great timing as we’re just getting ready to purchase :0)
I think all foam might offgas because it’s foam, but I don’t think regulations require flame retardant on all of them – like not dolls, but yes to cars and carseats and couches. 🙁 Katie
I bought 3 twin mattresses from moonlight slumber& 1 crib/toddler mattress. I bought 2 twins after we had one for a bit & they were about $715 for both with a 10% off coupon. They are very nice and have no smell whatsoever. They do have foam but the site clearly states they have no harmful chemicals etc. We are very happy with our purchase so far and we’ve had them for almost 3 yrs. We have 5 kids, so cost is important but so is our health. My oldest 17 yr old has a 100% pure rubber latex mattress as do my hubby and I. We really LOVE them. Had them for almost 10 yrs. The pillows are great too!! They are by far the most comfortable beds ever. I never get sore spots on my hips like I used to with any other type of mattress. I wish I could buy more of them for my other kids but the moonlight slumber seemed to fit our needs for healthy and affordable. The kids say they are comfy too. I just need to buy one more mattress for our youngest. He shares a bed with his brother right now. 🙂
Thanks Katie for all the phenomenal research you do. I really appreciate it!! God Bless!
We bought our latex mattresses from a wonderful company. www.Sleepez.com
Thanks for the link to this company! If we don’t end up liking the mattress we ordered from Sleep On Latex when it arrives, I am definitely going to check this company’s beds out!
Thanks Georgette! I went off looking at a bunch of crib mattresses after your comment and will almost have to write a new post! Exciting to find out there are more safe options than just a few – 🙂 Katie
Great information, Katie. Thanks for sharing your story with us! Investing in a good mattress is a wonderful decision and something that you definitely won’t regret.
Hello! Love this post and the others in this series.
I am really looking into the bed of buckwheat husks for myself/husband and toddler. We have a new little one coming in October and I would like to cosleep. Unfortunately, this mattress is considered a SIDS risk according to the manufacturers. Do you know of anyone who has this mattress type? I’m wondering if the manufacturers are just saying its a SIDS risk because of liability or if it really is a concern.
Just to be on the safe side though, do you know if there are any mattress pads that may firm the mattress up a bit and fill in some of the gaps to make it safer for a newborn and cosleeping situation?
I’m also wondering how comfortable it is. The online posts are all positive which immediately makes me wonder where the critical comments are. Surely not everyone has loved this set up…
Thanks for posting about all this. It is so enlightening!
I don’t know anyone personally who has one, but I know there have been readers on one of these threads (hopefully not Facebook or that’s lost) who does. If you can find it, you can reply to them and they should get your Q in email. I wish I knew more about the co-sleeping thing, but I really have no handle on what these mattresses are like.
Here’s a really interesting article someone just shared with me today on FB that is highly related: http://www.mumanu.com/2013/06/09/some-shocking-facts-about-cot-death-sudden-infant-death-syndrome-sids/
I hope you figure it out – and I’d love for you to come back here in a few months and let me know how you like it!!
Hi it’s Lynne, owner of Open Your Eyes Bedding. The reason we do not recommend co-sleeping on a hull mattress is because it is not flat like a traditional mattress. The individual pods (it’s actually a modular mattress!) creates high and low points. Sound like it would feel lumpy, but the hulls conform to your body as you sleep, creating a very comfortable, supportive firm surface.
We do worry that an infant’s face could possibly roll in between the individual pods and since their little neck muscles are not yet developed, they would not be able to get themselves out. Even though you can breath right through a hull mattress (lots of airflow throughout), it is what is put above the mattress (blankets etc) that we have no control over, that would worry us.
Also, hull pillows have been labeled as soft bedding and therefore a SIDS risk by the CPSC. Combining all this together, and being parent ourselves, we just feel better recommending another set up be planned for co-sleeping such as the wonderful little “side car” cribs available today.
If anyone has any further questions about co-sleeping on a hull mattress they can email me direct at [email protected]
Thanks for the great post and including us on your list of healthy mattresses!
Katie, did you come across anything about Saatva mattresses in your research? They claim not to off-gas, and to be “eco-friendly”… just wondering if you knew much about them?
Sorry Mary, that brand isn’t familiar but I’m sure I didn’t find all the good ones. 🙂 Katie
Please read more about latex allergies. Repeated exposure to latex products is a risk factor to development of this allergy, which can become life threatening. In the case of switching out your mattresses you may be simply trading one problem for another.
I have to say, we LOVE our Pure Echos for the kiddos from www.mygreenmattress.com for under $500 they are less expensive then any other natural twin I have found (and you can get them in multiple sizes) and they are handcrafted, made to order in a family owned shop. Doesn’t get much better than that! My hubby and I have an Everlast and I have to say, we love the natural latex topper on it and sleep very soundly. No toxic smells when we received them and no chemical flame barriers, just natural wool. No doctor’s note needed to get without chemicals too :).
Awesome, Sarah, thanks for the tip!
Is latex then flame retardant without additional chemicals? Has anyone looked into the IKEA mattresses further?
No, I don’t think latex itself is flame resistant, but it is likely less flammable than polyurethane foam (nicknamed “liquid gasoline” because it’s made from petroleum and goes up in flames like nobody’s business). It’s usually paired with wool or some OTHER material that suppresses the flames. I haven’t looked deeply into Ikea, but I remember one reader saying that when they did, the prices were pretty much the same as Naturepedic but for not-organic materials at Ikea. Hope that helps! 🙂 Katie
What about sleep Number beds?
I haven’t researched that brand specifically, but I’d guess that they’re still made with foam, which means they’ll need a fire blocker of some sort. It would be surprising if it wasn’t chemical in nature. The company should tell you but you might have to make a phone call and ask pointed questions to find out exactly what’s in there. 🙂 Katie
I wondered if having a metal zipper in an otherwise safe organic latex bed is an issue for EMF
I didn’t really go into the EMF issue in my safe sleep research, but most/many beds have innersprings as well. If the zipper is the only metal in the bed…would it at least be less of a concern? It’s a good question, but someone who knows more about the EMF issue than me needs to shed some light on it. 🙂 katie
We are very happy with our wool mattress from Holy Lamb Organics in Washington.
Argh! I am having the same internal dilemma with this right now! We are all on toxic mattresses and I’m looking into replacements. The nagging morning cough story really rings some alarm bells for me as my daughter started in with just that when we moved to this house and my parents got her a new mattress. Kicking myself now! We just moved my son onto his own mattress on the floor (verrrry old, probably circa 1970’s) and I woke up with the most irritated throat this morning after sleeping on it with him last night. This post could not be more timely. The $$$$ side of things is incredible limiting right now. I’m going to seriously research some of the DIY options like the Open Your Eyes Bedding. I’ll let you know what we end up with for sure! Thank you, thank you, thank you for doing this research!
So glad I could be of help, Angela, and I truly do want to hear how it goes! Some of the DIY type mattresses look so funny, I wonder if they’re comfortable, but maybe they’d surprise me.
Best of luck! 🙂 Katie
Angela, after a lot of my own searching, we did go with an Open Your Eyes Bedding mattress. We had a lot of fun putting it together. I’m very happy with our choice!
Oh, thank you for the feedback! I think I’m ready to go for it and buy a full size kit. We only have room for a twin in our bedroom, but we want to get our son a mattress that he will be able to use later as he gets bigger. Could we just put together a twin and then add pods to make it a full later?
Yes, with the new design, you absolutely can add pods later. It is super easy.
What did you do about a bed frame? I am about to order a DIY twist mattress from Open Your Eyes
We just placed the pods on top of our existing boxspring. It would be good to have a little edge, as the pods sometimes hang over the side or end by a few inches. But, that’s easily fixed when we fluff the pods and make the bed.