Articles

The Different Types of Latex

by Maria Williams Online Marketing Specialist

In simple terms, a latex foam mattress is one that uses the processed sap from a rubber tree as its platform instead of using traditional bedding technology such as springs or air. A lot of people are considering them superior in terms of relieving back pain, being most durable, natural and healthy. They are also recommended for people suffering from allergies because the material is hypoallergenic and organic making these mattresses the most ecofriendly and healthiest available.

There are three main types of latex being used for mattress production:

Natural (Organic)
This is made from the natural sap or serum that is harvested from the rubber tree and then is processed. The sap is harvested by a primitive technology called "tapping" which consists of making small incisions on the tree and collecting the sap in containers. Mattresses made from 100% natural latex are very hard to find on the market because of the cost involved in extraction and manufacturing.

Synthetic (Man Made)
This means that the material used for production of latex mattresses is human made with technology known as polymerization and includes binding together single molecules of a monomer such as styrene mixed with surfactants. The end result is a material that has similar characteristics to the natural one, and is much cheaper. The down side is that this material has shorter durability and is not as firm as the natural latex.

Blended (Mixed)
The term blended signifies that this latex is made from mixing natural and synthetic latex usually in ratios of 80% synthetic and 20% natural. There is also a blend of equal parts natural and synthetic latex, but this is rare and is reserved for premium mattresses. The blended latex binds together the benefits of the two main latex types such as the durability and firmness of the natural and the low cost of the synthetic latex.

Researching for latex mattresses has surely popped up the words "Dunlop" and "Talley". These aren`t types of latex, but the technologies used to process the extracted latex into the inner core of the mattress.

Dunlop
This is the traditional processing method an is employed since 1920`s. The liquid sap from the trees is poured into moulds and heated or baked into its solid form. Then the mould is gradually cooled and the processed latex is removed. This is the Dunlop latex core of the mattress.

Talalay
This process is similar to the Dunlop processing method, with the difference of adding two extra steps. After the sap is poured into the mould, the mould is sealed and a vacuum is created. This is the first additional step, and is used to distribute the liquid serum evenly throughout the mould. The serum is theft flash-frozen (the second additional step) before it is baked into its solid form. Then the moulds are slowly cooled and the talalay latex core is extracted.

Talalay vs Dunlop
The addition of the two extra steps makes a big difference in the performance of the end product. The Talalay process takes twice as long to manufacture, compared to Dunlop; the extra steps reflect on the end price of the product, which usually means that a mattress with Talaly core will be more expensive. Because Dunlop is denser it is firmer and is widely used as a base platform, where as Talalay is good for a more soft or plush finish so it makes a great top layer. Ultimately neither is better than the other, it all comes down to personal preferences and budget.


About Maria Williams Advanced   Online Marketing Specialist

68 connections, 2 recommendations, 227 honor points.
Joined APSense since, January 15th, 2016, From Sydney, Australia.

Created on Dec 31st 1969 19:00. Viewed 0 times.

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