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Comparing Popular Materials for Custom Mattresses

When it comes to buying a bed, between floor model retailers and custom mattress makers, there’s a lot more than size and firmness to decide on. It used to be that innerspring mattresses with puffy pillow tops were goals when it came to comfy mattresses, but that’s just not so anymore.


As a small custom mattress factory creating bespoke mattresses made-to-order using heritage techniques, we’re well-versed in all the new material options and construction techniques that make mattresses that far surpass beds of the past, in terms of comfort. Let’s take a look at the material choices for custom mattress construction – the pros and cons of each, and which might be right for your bed.



Custom Foam for Custom-Made Beds


All-foam mattresses are constructed by layering different types of foam that provide different types of firmness and support. Think of The Princess and The Pea, all squished into one mattress. When you have an all-foam mattress custom made, there’s room to customize the layering and firmness that you don’t really have with pocket coils. However, hybrid foam and spring mattresses are always an option.


Pros

  • Spread out Support: CustomFoam-core mattresses are great at relieving stress on pressure points throughout the whole body. Solid-core foam is also a bit more responsive to the curves of your body than memory foam mattresses.

  • No Motion Transfer: Altering layers of different types of foam means there’s virtually no motion transfer, which is great for people sleeping with a partner on a different sleep schedule, or people who are tired of waking up every time their cat jumps on the bed. We can’t stop your cat from yelling at you or pawing at your face to wake you up, though. Sorry.

  • Cost: Depending on the construction style you choose for your all-foam mattress, you can get a completely custom bed on a budget.

  • Resilience: These kinds of beds last a really long time, so as far as affordability + longevity, all foam is a good choice.

Cons

  • Synthetic Materials: Some of the types of foam used in all-foam beds aren’t natural, and unless they’re certified, you might not know whether you’re getting exposed to the chemicals used in the processing stage. The best custom mattress manufacturers, though, aren’t going to use low-quality, dangerous foam, so if you’re having your mattress made-to-order at a company who makes bespoke beds, you’ve got nothing to worry about.

  • Weight: These things are HEAVY, so if you’re having a mattress custom-made for a sleep spot in a vehicle, like an RV bed, Airstream or van bed, you have to figure out if the vehicle’s weight limit will be a limiting factor once you have all your other amenities (and yourself) loaded into the vehicle as well.

Memory Foam Mattresses for Bespoke Beds


Mattresses made of memory foam, beds topped with layers of memory foam, and mattress toppers with gel memory foam are all the rage right now. It’s the trendy thing in custom beds, and, to be honest, memory foam might be the thing that brought on the custom-mattress-making boom of brands we see today. And it’s for good reason – memory foam has a lot of great qualities.


Pros

  • Comfort Technology: NASA came up with this stuff. Officially referred to as viscoelastic polyfoam, the unique properties of this material allow it to return to its original shape after it’s been deformed. The name sounds complicated, but it’s not: visco = viscous, meaning thick and slow-moving, and elastic = well… elastic: the ability to bounce back when stretched.

  • Ergonomics: As far as relieving strain on pressure points goes, custom memory foam mattresses are tops because they can evenly distribute weight throughout the mattress.

  • Choice: You can customize a memory foam mattress with different types of memory foam, including standard, gel-infused, non-petroleum, and hybrid latex foam/memory foam construction. This means you can customize the firmness as well as the temperature of how the mattress sleeps.

  • Hypoallergenic: The vast majority of the time, memory foam mattresses are the best choice for people with dust and skin-related allergies.

  • Fit: Memory foam mattresses have straight corners and edges, and they’re flexible in an organic way. That means custom split mattresses have nearly no gap, and that memory foam mattresses can be made to fit an adjustable bed.

  • Transfer: Custom mattress factories have begun to sell memory foam mattresses that are rolled and vacuum-sealed in a way that makes it so they can be shipped in manageable boxes. In the same vein, the compressibility and flexibility of memory foam means it’s one of the easier kinds of mattresses to push up the narrow staircase in your new house.

Cons

  • Cost: Admittedly, top-of-the-line memory foam mattresses are in a different price range than top-of-the-line innerspring or foam mattresses.

  • Breathability: Some memory foam tends to sleep hot. Some people like that, but if you’re a warm sleeper anyway, this can be uncomfortable. Ways to get around this, though, is to customize your be with gel or gel-infused memory foam to increase breathability.

Custom Mattresses Made of Natural Latex


Latex beds are quickly gaining ground on memory foam in terms of being a popular choice for mattress construction. When we think of the word “latex,” we usually think about medical gloves or nightmare-ish wall paint. But with modern technology, it’s become so much more, which is why more and more custom mattress makers feature latex among their top choices for mattress construction.


Pros

  • Natural: Custom latex mattresses are constructed with natural resources, making them safe, very hypoallergenic, and a sustainable choice for your mattress.

  • Cost: Latex beds are surprisingly affordable, and they’re durable as well.

  • Low-Maintenance: Mattresses constructed of natural latex don’t need to be flipped or rotated, and since there’s no chemicals, they have minimal off-gassing when unwrapped.

  • Comfort: The way latex acts is almost a cross between all-foam and memory foam. It gently contours to your shape the way memory foam does, but it’s more responsive, like CustomFoam mattresses.

  • Sleep Temperature: Latex is much more breathable than memory foam, so sleeps a lot cooler.

  • Durability: These mattresses can last at least 20 years if properly cared for.

Cons

  • Weight: Latex mattresses are heavy and difficult to move around. Not something you want to try to push up pie-turn stairs in an old house. Maybe stick with latex in first-floor bedrooms?

  • Cost: We know this is in the “Pros” section, but while a custom latex mattress might cost less than a memory foam one, it’s still higher up there in terms of price point in the long list of mattress-construction materials.

Are Innerspring Mattresses Still a Thing?


Bespoke innerspring mattresses and their mass-produced counterparts have been a thing since the mid-19th century. Previously, the best options for comfort were water beds and down-stuffed mattresses with soft, plush tops. The rest of us were likely still sleeping on hay and horse-hair-stuffed beds. Many antique beds from the late 19th century on are made to support an innerspring mattress, so if you’ve got an antique bed frame, you’ve got options. You’ll likely have to have the mattress made in a ¾ size to fit the vintage bed, or maybe an even more unique custom size mattress.


So, yeah – innerspring mattresses, even for custom-made beds, are still a thing; they have unique advantages that have kept them around for 150+ years.


Pros

  • Breathability: This type of mattress sleeps cool because air can easily travel between and through the coil-filled center of the mattress.

  • Cost: Especially now, with all the other material options you can choose for a custom mattress, innerspring mattresses are most cost-effective.

  • Availability: You don’t have to have this mattress made custom; they’re everywhere. If your bed frame is a standard size, you can grab an innerspring mattress at a store and easily get it home and set up in less than an afternoon.

  • Staying Power: Innerspring mattresses are a traditional and familiar feel; and there’s nothing wrong with the comfort of familiarity.

  • Support: Pocket coils provide a lot of pushback, lending strong support to your body, which can be hybridized with foam or memory foam to create an even more comprehensive style of support.

Cons

  • Quality: Simply – you get what you pay for. Innerspring mattresses are prone to sunken spots where you tend to sleep the most, and they wear out faster than other mattress materials.

  • Motion Transfer: Anyone does anything anywhere on an innerspring mattress, and you’ll feel it. So that’s not great for people sleeping on opposite schedules, or troubled sleepers who wake up at the smallest sound or movement. In fairness, a loophole is to get a split king or queen mattress made with innersprings; then there’s no motion transfer from one side to the other. But then there’s the gap in the middle…

  • Spring Structure: The thing about springs is that they can break. What if your toddler tries to throw a front slip and lands really hard on the mattress? Or you have a big, clumsy dog jumping on and off the bed every day? A couple springs break in an innerspring mattress and you’ll be in the market for a new one…. We guess you’ll choose a custom mattress next time. Lessons learned.

Which Mattress Material is Right for You?


First of all, these aren’t your only options for how your custom mattress is constructed; talk to the right bespoke mattress manufacturer and you can have them make whatever kind of hybrid mattress you want. So just like one-size-doesn’t-fit-all when it comes to beds, the same is true of the type of comfort features different people need to get their best sleep. So, who might like which mattress material best?

  • Innerspring: Great for people who want a custom-made or custom-sized bed with a traditional feel.

  • CustomFoam: Perfect for people looking for foam construction without the cost or heat of memory foam.

  • Memory Foam: Great for people who need low motion transfer options and for people with back problems. Also good for lighter-weight people who need something soft to sink into but still supportive and ergonomic.

  • Natural Latex: Good for people who are into sustainability. Also the best option for heavier people who need firmer, more durable mattresses.

So, yeah, choosing a mattress material is a whole thing in and of itself. But once you make all your decisions, you can sit back and wait for your made-to-measure custom mattress – whichever kind you chose – to show up at your door ready to place in a bed frame. And if you want to take the mattress-buying process to another level of easy? Have the same custom mattress maker create matching bespoke bed linens as well.

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