The Simmons Latex Mattress… Best Latex Mattress or Is There More to This Story?

NOTE: the following article is completely outdated. So why am I leaving it up? Well, it is a sort of snapshot of the past… a time when the three best-known mattress brands went through all the trouble of producing a high-quality latex mattress–imagine that! Now there is no such thing as a “Simmons latex mattress.” There may be a bit of latex padding thrown on top of an innerspring here and there, but nothing compares with the “olden days” of 2009.

The mattress industry has had a number of upheavals since the economy began its downward spiral in late 2008. Ownership has changed… materials have changed… bedding technology has changed… markets have changed. Costs had to be cut to avoid bankruptcy. Employees had to laid off. Debts had to be refinanced. In all the ruckus, the big-name companies decided that the latex mattress was an unnecessary product and the line was eliminated in favor of new and improved gel memory foams.

The end result is that consumers who like latex because of its resilience, breathability, comfort, durability and eco-friendliness (at least in the case of natural latex) were out of luck with the Big Three.

The good news is, natural latex beds are still widely available through smaller brands, specialty retailers and online sites. This remains an excellent material upon which to slumber through the night no matter what the big brands might think.

So the text below is no longer valid, but there might still offer some points of interest and nostalgia to the rare few.

[Old Stuff Below]

The Simmons latex mattress contains a blend of natural rubber tree sap and synthetic latex in a 65/35 blend (natural is the higher number).

Just as comparison, Sealy uses synthetic latex in their main product. the Spring Free line. [Update–the Spring Free is gone forever.] The Sealy site is a bit clearer about how their latex mattresses are constructed. Presumably, the Simmons latex mattress is also built in layers, with a firm inner core for support and durability, and layers stacked on top that vary in density and firmness.

Also, as long as we’re making latex mattress comparisons between these two mattress giants, Simmons offers models made with both the Talalay and Dunlop method of processing. Sealy only does the Dunlop process.

Neither of these methods is superior to the other — but they do produce a different “feel” to the bed. (Dunlop is more dense and firm while Talalay is more soft and “sinky”–see the section on latex mattresses for more info.) Having the choice allows you to compare mattresses more thoroughly.

Soy Based Latex Foam

The Simmons latex mattress uses what they call a “soy-enhanced” latex foam core. This means the inner core of the mattress (which is the firmest part for durability and support) is made from a blend of synthetic latex and soy-based foam, which increases its natural and eco-friendly properties.

Sustainable Wood and Natural Fabrics

Simmons also goes the extra step of sourcing its wood from certified sustainable forests and using natural fabrics. If you are looking to go 100 percent natural and/or organic, this wouldn’t be the bed for you, because it still contains petroleum-based latex. But it’s a nice compromise.

Simmons Natural Care

The Natural Care Collection is where you will find the various models of the Simmons latex mattress.

These beds are designed and endorsed by Danny Seo, the high-profile, eco-friendly interior designer who gives tips on “how to live green.” While he lends credibility, I think most people are aware that these partnerships are based on mutual profit.

New Hope

This is a model sold exclusively at JCPenney.

  • It uses latex made by the Talalay method (giving it a somewhat softer, less dense texture) for the top layers.
  • 6-inch inner core of soy-enhanced foam.
  • It comes in Firm, Plush or Pillowtop.
  • Prices range from about $1700 to $2000 and up.
  • 20 year warranty

The advantage of buying from JC Penney is they offer you a “45-night comfort assessment” during which you can decide if you want to keep it or exchange it for a different selection. You do not get a refund, and your credit is 90 percent of the original purchase price. You can only make one exchange. The second mattress you choose has to be at least the same price as the one you first chose.

Branch River

The next step “up” in the Simmons latex mattress hierarchy is the Branch River line.

  • It comes in Firm, Plush or Pillowtop.
  • Prices are difficult to gauge because once you hit the retailers, the model names change (hint: look for at least “river” in the name). Expect to pay at least $1500 to $2000 and up for this bed at a “discount” mattress store.
  • Thickness ranges from 10 inches (firm) to 13 inches (pillowtop).
  • Top layers made with the Dunlop method.
  • Inner core is 8 inches.
  • 20 year warranty.

Simmons Pike Peak

The “best” category of the Simmons latex mattress is the Pikes Peak. It is a truly luxurious latex mattress, but of course it has a price tag to match.

  • It comes in Firm, Plush, Pillowtop and TruSoft Pillowtop.
  • Prices range from $2500 to $4500 at “discount” online retailers
  • Inner core is made with six inches of Talalay latex and 2 inches of Soy Comfort Foam
  • Upper layers are Talalay latex of varying firmness and densities
  • Contains an Edge Support layer for better back support

Does Simmons Make the Best Latex Mattress?

So does all this make the Simmons the best choice? Well, it depends what you’re looking for. If you are new to the idea of purchasing latex mattresses or any other kind of natural mattress, there is a lot to learn before pulling out your wallet.

Simmons has certainly put a lot of thought and care into designing and making their latex mattresses. They beat Sealy in their attention to eco-friendly materials and construction. They also offer both Talalay and Dunlop construction in their Natural Care product line. Consumer reviews of the Simmons latex mattress are very sparse at this time, but we will keep checking.

One Response to “The Simmons Latex Mattress… Best Latex Mattress or Is There More to This Story?”

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  1. Dawn says:

    I bought a Simmons Natural Care Latex Cypress Pillow Top in 2008 and as of March 2016 it’s sagging like an old woman whose had way too many children!! It’s horrible and my hubby and I wake up with a bad back every morning and are looking for a new bed. I would have expected it to last longer than 8 years. You only have to look at each side of the bed to see where we both sleep. This bed cost us well over $3000 at the time. I’m going back to my Tempurpedic that lasted 15 years!

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