There is a common misconception that sleeping on a latex mattress feels hot. This issue probably arises because so many people confuse latex with memory foam. One should not feel warm while sleeping on a latex mattress compared to a memory foam mattress.
A latex mattress actually allows air to circulate much better than many other types of mattresses, allowing for a cool comfortable sleep.
Why is this issue important?
In Dubai, nobody wants to sleep on a mattress that feels hot. In cooler climates, a warm-feeling mattress may be received well to customers, but this is not the case here. If you are thinking about purchasing a mattress, you will certainly want to select one which is suitable for the climate.
How does latex offer a cooler night's sleep?
Open cell structure of latex
To understand why latex delivers a cooling sleep, we need to look at the structure of latex. Latex is made from the sap of the rubber tree, and this sap is processed into a foam block. This type of foam has an open cell structure which allows a lot of airflow. In addition, a latex mattress is punctuated by pinholes set at regular intervals, offering even further airflow. Different latex manufacturers have different methods of ensuring this type of ventilation in latex mattresses, whether these are the standard pinholes or other ductwork. You can see how our EB latex mattresses are made here.
The pinholes or ductwork are created during the manufacturing process, whereas the foam itself naturally has an open cell structure. With both methods of airflow, the key point to note is that latex is naturally well-ventilated. The open cell structure and the pinholes offer superb ventilation, allowing you to experience a cooler night's sleep.
Movement on a latex mattress increases air circulation
In addition to all the built-in ventilation, latex mattresses also allow extra movement of air when you move during your sleep. This happens because when you move around on the open-cell structure of latex, it creates a 'pump and suck' effect that encourages air to move into the area you just vacated.
In a nutshell, movement on a latex mattress encourages air to move in and out of the mattress through the open-cell structure and the pinholes. This helps you feel cooler while sleeping.
How does this differ from memory foam?
Unlike latex, most memory foam mattresses have a closed cell structure. This limits the airflow considerably in memory foam mattresses, which means that memory foam feels hotter while sleeping. The other difference is that memory foam relies on body heat to contour to the body's shape. This heat is retained easily by the mattress, again making memory foam feel warm to sleep on.
The mattress cover plays a critical role in ventilation
Even if your mattress itself has the best airflow in the world, you will only feel cool if your mattress cover allows proper ventilation. There is no point in enclosing a latex mattress in an airtight cover: you would lose all the benefits of the mattress ventilation.
Let's look at what you require in a suitable mattress cover for a latex mattress. Firstly, you need a mattress cover. For health and hygiene purposes, you will want a removable cleanable mattress cover. You can simply unzip the cover, pop it in the wash (or send it for dry-cleaning) and then you have a fresh clean surface. Secondly, latex can lose some of its durability when exposed to direct sunlight; another reason why you need a cover for your latex mattress.
A good mattress cover which allows for proper airflow needs to be breathable in some way. In addition it should be cleanable - there is no point to having the cover if it merely ventilates but cannot be cleaned.
At Heveya®, all our latex mattresses come with one of two top quality covers which fit these important criteria. The first of these covers is a washable one with a ventilation spacer, where the spacer allows excellent air circulation and moisture regulation. The other is a dry-cleanable cover made of bamboo which keeps your body dry and cool. A breathable mattress cover on your luxurious latex mattress will keep you fresh and cool all night long.
Use a slatted bed base to make the most of your mattress
You'll also want to ensure your bed base allows for great airflow to keep you cool at night. Avoid a flat base for this: it would block off all the natural venting properties of your latex mattress. Instead, use a sprung slatted bed base. Ultra-comfortable and hygienic, this type of base lets air flow between the slats and keeps you cool at night.
If you haven't considered sprung slatted bases recently, you may wish to do so as they allow you to make adjustments on the level of springiness just the way you like it.