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May 23

How to Pick a Green Mattress

green mattress

There are many ways that you can help protect and preserve the environment in your life, and many people are looking around to find ways that they can help reduce their carbon footprint, “go green”, and save the planet. These efforts to save the planet should begin at home, and only by beginning to preserve the environment in your home can you truly form that habits that will help you to be just a little more “green” in the other areas of your life. One of the simplest ways that you can “go green” is by selecting a mattress to use that is good for the environment. You may think “A mattress that is good for the environment?” and you will not be alone in this thinking. Many people don’t even realize that there are mattresses designed to be eco-friendly, but it can be easy to find a mattress that is great for the environment and great for you to sleep on.

The majority of old mattresses are simply tossed on the scrap heap or in landfills when they are discarded, and that simply adds to the amount of waste material that is continuously leaking chemicals and harmful gases into the atmosphere. The reason for this is that recycling mattresses can tend to be fairly difficult, and the majority of the recycling centers around the country will simply not accept a mattress for recycling.

There are a couple of types of mattresses that are truly “green”:

Latex Mattresses

Latex mattresses are created from latex, a material formed from the sap of the rubber tree. Many products in use today utilize latex, such as latex gloves and the tires on your car. The difference between the latex gloves and a latex mattress is the process used to manufacture the latex mattress differs from the process used to create other latex products.

Two different processes of manufacturing are used to create latex beds: the Dunlop and Talalay methods. Most companies prefer to use the Talalay method, as the foams that is the result of the manufacturing process is often more comfortable and softer. Usually the base material of latex mattresses are created using the Dunlop method, seeing as the finished product of the Dunlop manufacturing method is usually firmer.

A latex mattress is able to last as many as 20 years, with an endurance and durability that far supersedes any other kind of mattress. Latex is already a durable material, and is very resilient. It is also “green” due to the fact that it is easily broken down and recycled.

In fact, the latex material simply decomposes when disposed of, and many recycling centers will accept latex mattresses to recycle. The mattresses are also non-allergenic, and they will not cause any skin problems or rashes when you sleep on them. They contain no chemicals or toxins that can be harmful to either adults or children, making them a perfect choice for a “green” mattress.

Futon Mattresses

The Japanese developed an excellent type of all natural mattress that is easy to use, comfortable to sleep on, and easily transported. The futon is typical of the minimalistic Japanese lifestyle, and is made entirely of natural wool and cotton. It has no foam, no springs, and is completely recyclable thanks to the natural materials that are used in its manufacturing.

A futon is similar to a very thick down comforter, but the wool that fills the mattress is much thicker and more solid than down, providing sufficient resistance to cushion the body from the hard floor. These mattresses are also excellent for people with back problems, as the support to the lower back provided by the futon is excellent.

Some futons come installed in a frame in order to lift them off the floor in the traditional Western bed style. Most Japanese simply sleep on the futon on the floor, but many Westerners find this strange and prefer to be off the floor. These mattresses can also be used as a couch or sofa in daytime, and they are incredibly comfortable as both bed and sofa.

Summary

These types of mattresses are very expensive, making it more difficult to “go green” due to the high cost of their production. If you are going to buy a regular mattress, look for one with:

  • Recycled steel springs
  • Forest Stewardship Council certified wooden frame
  • Biodegradable mattress cover
  • Natural, foam

 

Author bio:
M.H is the editor of MattressDetective.com, a site where he shares mattress reviews and ratings aimed to help you make a better choice.

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