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Home » Information » Memory Foam vs. Innerspring Mattresses: Which is Better?

Memory Foam vs. Innerspring Mattresses: Which is Better?

Our Take

Below you will find information on memory foam and innerspring mattresses. We’ll discuss comfort, durability, and health.

While these are two popular options in the mattress industry, we always recommend natural latex mattresses, or if you want springs, a combination of natural latex and springs.

Natural latex is made without harmful chemicals, fillers, or synthetic materials. The Dunlop and Talalay latex in Savvy Rest organic mattresses come in different densities, ensuring comfort through customization. Natural latex is also incredibly durable and will last for years, as a mattress should.

If you are still interested in learning more about the benefits and downsides of memory foam and innerspring mattresses, keep reading.

What is Memory Foam?

Memory foam is a type of polyurethane foam. It’s a man-made material originally used for padding in helmets and seats but became popular in the mattress industry due to its ability to mold and conform to the body. It does this through a chemical reaction, retaining your body heat.

What is a Spring Mattress?

A spring mattress is made with either lower-gauge or higher-gauge coils.

There are two different kinds of springs. The traditional Bonnell-style spring is interconnected and shaped like an hourglass while wrapped coils are individually wrapped and known for being more responsive and conducive for people struggling with pressure point relief.

If you’re interested in an innerspring mattress, we recommend opting for a combination of springs and latex. While our all-latex mattresses are more popular, we also offer three innerspring mattresses.

The SerenitySpring is customizable and includes one layer of natural latex (your choice of Dunlop or Talalay) and 8” of wrapped coils (Plush or Firm). Split configurations available. 

The TranquilitySpring is similar to the SerenitySpring but has an overall lower profile. The mattress includes one layer of natural latex (your choice of Dunlop or Talalay) and 4″ of wrapped coils (Plush or Firm). Split configurations available.

The Earthspring includes recycled steel Bonnell springs, Dunlop latex, and coir. This is our most economical mattress but it’s not customizable. The Earthspring has an overall medium-firm feel and is especially popular for children since it offers both support and “bounce.”

Price Comparison

Memory foam

Low-range: $200 – $900
Mid-range: $900 – $2,000
Upper-range: $2,000 – $6,000+

Innerspring

Low-range: $200 – $700
Mid-range: $700 – $900
Upper-range: $900- $5,000+

(Average prices based on a Queen-sized mattress)
 

Both memory foam and spring mattresses are available in a wide range of prices. The fact is, you can find a very inexpensive version of either type—but at the lower price ranges, the quality of the mattress will most likely suffer.

Typically, a higher-priced model will be more comfortable, durable, and potentially more healthy (if it contains natural and organic materials).

However, be aware that a cheaply-made mattress may still carry a high price tag. In such situations, ask questions to be sure you aren’t being persuaded by a trendy sales pitch and a price tag that doesn’t come with quality.

Which is More Comfortable?

Both innerspring and memory foam mattresses can be initially comfortable, depending on the model and the person. Some are made with inexpensive materials that wear out fairly rapidly, with disappointing effects on comfort. If your mattress isn’t supportive, this can lead to back, shoulder, and hip pain.

The key is to opt for materials that are both healthy and comfortable.

Memory Foam 

Memory foam has the benefit of good pressure relief. Each time you lie down, a chemical reaction between your body’s heat and the foam makes the mattress surface slowly contour to your shape.

It’s an interesting sensation that also has its downsides. It can cause restlessness and discomfort when you shift your sleeping position during the night because memory foam has to be warmed up all over again every time you move.

Innersprings

Innersprings are only one component in an innerspring mattress. Made with high-quality materials, innerspring mattresses can provide a very comfortable sleeping surface. On the other hand, most innerspring mattresses contain very inexpensive materials that, while affordable, are less comfortable and durable.

What About Durability?

In any mattress, durability is most highly correlated with high-quality materials. Materials chosen to cut manufacturing costs tend to lead to poor mattress performance.

If you want a mattress to last for years, you need to see the purchase as an investment for your health and comfort.

Memory Foam

Inexpensive memory foam mattresses aren’t built to last. At some point, they will begin to sag, develop body impressions, and lose their ability to support you with proper alignment.

Innersprings

Innersprings vary in durability. For a more durable innerspring mattress look for lower-gauge coils; these are made of thicker, stronger metal than higher-gauge coils.

But don’t overlook the rest of the materials. Innersprings made with compromised materials will break down over time. If you’re on a tight budget, less-expensive materials might be a tempting option, but also consider the longevity of the mattress.

If your budget permits, it’s worth spending twice as much money on a better mattress if it lasts twice as long. You could also consider financing your mattress.

A Few Notes on Health

Public concern about the healthfulness and safety of conventional mattress materials continues to grow. Of primary concern are the toxic chemicals found in flame retardants and VOCs (volatile organic compounds).

Serious long-term health effects including cancer, obesity, infertility, and developmental brain disorders are associated with daily exposure to these compounds.

Wondering about the health of your mattress? Check out this blog post.

Memory Foam

There are a plethora of memory foam mattresses on the market, but the health effects associated with polyurethane and its added chemicals are alarming. Many health-conscious individuals who are leery of unnecessary chemicals are turning to natural latex mattresses instead.

Innersprings

Some of the questionable chemicals in memory foam mattresses are found in common innersprings as well. Mattresses with springs also contain other materials, and those materials primarily determine the healthfulness and safety of the mattress.

Many conventional mattresses incorporate materials or processes that produce VOCs for the life of the product. For a natural mattress that will not off-gas hazardous chemicals, look for GreenGuard certification.

Pressure Relief for Shoulders & Hips

While memory foam is initially great at pressure point relief for the shoulders and hips, the keyword is initially. As previously discussed, memory foam lacks in durability when compared to natural latex and will eventually have permanent dips and sags, leading to a painful night’s sleep.

Innerspring mattresses that are cheaply made can also fail at giving you the support you need.

Natural Latex Mattress Options

Savvy Rest organic mattresses are made of natural latex. Our all-latex mattresses are customizable and built with your specific needs in mind so you don’t have to guess whether or not it will be comfortable and work for your body. This is a huge relief, both in terms of pressure points and peace of mind.

We offer three GOTS-certified organic mattresses made exclusively with natural latex: the Unity, the Serenity, and the Tranquility.

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