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The Mattress Underground
quality manufacturers ~ knowledgeable retailers ~ educated consumers
I've started a new thread in answer to your question in post #5 here about Saatva.
After the original analysis that was written here, I was contacted by the manufacturer of the Saatva Mattress who provided me with more up to date and detailed specs and information so this is an edited and updated analysis of the original Saatva mattress analysis and review so it more accurately reflects all the current specs and components (some of which are not yet up to date on their site). I'll list the layers from bottom to top (as supplied by the manufacturer) along with my comments and then provide an overview of the mattress and then comment on some of the information on their site as well. Normally I don't go into quite this much detail but since they were good enough to provide me with the information it's only fair to provide a more detailed analysis.
There is some reasonably good quality/value here ... especially compared to most of the mainstream choices that they compete with or that most consumers end up buying ... but it's also fair to say that there are other similar mattresses in a comparable or better quality/value range that would also be well worth considering. They are also not in the "ultra premium" category which they mention often on their site and some of the mattresses they compare themselves with are not apples to apples comparisons.
Mattress layers and components:
336 (416 in queen) Bonnell: Bonnell innersprings have been called the workhorse of the industry and they are a strong innerspring that are usually found in low to moderately priced mattresses or in mattresses that need firm and strong support for higher weights. Bonnell coils are made by Leggett & Platt (among many others) and come in a range of coil counts (see the Leggett & Platt range here ). In this case it is the 416 unit which is the second up in the L & P lineup. The center third of the innerspring is also zoned with what they call their Spinal Zone which helps to support the heavier pelvis and helps with alignment.
The innerspring has a good quality 2.5 oz insulator pad on the top and bottom of the springs to keep the foam from sinking into the gaps in between the springs.
The bottom of the mattress has an inch of 1.5 lb very firm polyfoam and on top of the springs there is an inch of 1.5 lb 34 ILD polyfoam to even out the compression and feel of the springs.
It also has steel edge supports which are stronger than edge supports that use just polyfoam.
In the pillowtop there is a 1/2" 1.2 lb 34 ILD insert to prevent Pocketed Unit from making noise or digging into the Non Woven Versare material on the bottom of the pillowtop enclosure.
Above the 1.2 lb polyfoam there is a 713 14.5 gauge pocket coil that has been compressed to 4". This is somewhat unusual since normally a microcoil is used when springs are used to replace foam in a pillowtop but this is an actual pocket coil which is compressed which is a more costly component. It would be comparable in concept to a microcoil where independent pocket coils provide the "comfort" of the mattress. This is a very durable and good quality component. It has a foam surround of firmer polyfoam for good edge support.
On top of the compressed pocket coil there is 1" of 5 lb gel memory foam which is also a high quality material.
There is also a 1.8 lb gel polyfoam center third layer which provides additional center zoning which is also a high quality polyfoam. The gel memory foam and and the quilting layers above it are used to even out the compression and improve the feel of sleeping directly on compressed pocket coils in the comfort layers.
Zoned Quilted cover:
1+1/4" 1516: This is a medium density 1.5 lb quilting foam
7/8" Quilt-flex 1210: This is a lower density quilting foam which is ultra soft and more durable and resilient than polyester fiber.
+ .85 FR Thistle (Naturally Inherent Fiber from Wood Pulp): This is an inherent viscose fire barrier which IMO is a safe choice compared to chemical fire retardant methods that are also used as fire barriers.
The quilted panel is stapled with flared staples every 2" into the foam encasement: This adds strength and helps the quilted cover maintain its shape
The organic cotton cover is 40% cotton on the face of fabric. Hypo allergenic synthetic fibers are used in the base and in the backing of the fabric. The damask organic cotton border has same blend. The border is quilted to 1/4" 1.2 lb 34 ILD polyfoam plus .85 FR barrier. This is a cover and border that "contains" organic fibers but is not organic.
The quilted cover: is also zoned in the center with a more closely spaced quilting pattern in the center of the mattress which adds quilting needles in the more closely spaced quilting areas in the center of the cover rather than just removing needles in the head and foot section.
Foundation: this is a foundation suitable for the weight of a waterbed covered with 250 lb test corrugated cardboard with double vertical rails in Full and Queen and 15 cross slats. Covered with FR cloth and organic cotton (same blend as the cover) border matching the mattress. This is a very strong and durable foundation although I am not the biggest fan of a solid cardboard surface that doesn't breath as well as foundations that have open slats (see post #10 here )
The top layers are the weak link of most mattresses but in the case of the Saatva the padding materials in the pillowtop are high quality materials (the compressed pocket coil, the gel memory foam, and the center zoning gel polyfoam).
The quilting layers would also be relatively durable because they are pre-compressed in the quilting which adds to durability ... particularly under the heavier areas of the body where the quilting pattern is more closely stitched. If anything I would consider the lower density polyfoam used in the quilting materials to be a little on the thick side (a little over 2") and I normally like to see quilting layers a little thinner (under 2") to reduce the risk of soft spots or virtual (or actual) impressions that can affect some people more than others but this is offset by the quilting and zoning of the mattress and therer is certainly less lower density polyfoam than most mainstream mattresses.
There are 3 layers of center zoning in this mattress (the Bonnell coil, the pillowtop, and the quilted cover) so this would add thickness and support to the middle third of the mattress where it is most needed under the pelvis and lower back and reduce the chances and effect of body impressions and foam softening. Although the foam layers would still soften (this is true of every mattress) ... they are also thicker and more supportive under the areas of heaviest weight so the effect of foam softening would be reduced. All the foam is CertiPur certified which is good.
Overall, in spite of the slightly higher amount of lower and medium quality foams in the upper layers of the mattress than I would normally suggest (2" or more is where I would become a little cautious) this is a good quality moderately priced mattress that would compare very well in terms of quality and value with most mainstream brands in higher budget ranges. While they are not an "ultra premium" mattress, they certainly compare well to many more premium mattresses made by many mainstream manufacturers, especially those that use thicker layers of less durable materials such as lower density polyfoam. The 3 levels of zoning would be a bonus in terms of contributing to good alignment and reducing impressions and the effect of foam softening and the breakdown of materials. It also fills a niche for a mattress that has both innerspring support and comfort layers (coil on coil) which are not commonly available online ... especially in this budget range.
Webpage and marketing:
This is the area where they have dropped the ball in my opinion.
On this page they are comparing their mattresses with much higher priced mattresses which don't even have a similar design and are not really apples to apples comparisons. Apples to apples comparisons need to have a common design or a common price range and only two of the mattresses they are comparing themselves to even use coils in the comfort layers at all and all of them use more costly innersprings as a support system. They are also using total coil count as a basis for comparison which is misleading because there is much more to an innerspring than the number of coils in the unit. Pocket coils (or microcoils) in the comfort layers should be compared to other comfort materials and not included as part of a comparison with support layers. Pocket coils compare well with other comfort materials in terms of feel and durability.
There are also some inaccurate statements on their site which can lead consumers to evaluating their mattress as having greater value than it really does in comparing them to other mattress types. These include ...
Given the quality and number of coils we use, our microcoils cost us around 4X the cost of a latex or memory foam layer used in other comparably priced beds.
Bonnell coils are the industry standard for mattresses as they offer support and durability,
However, because of the cost of production, coil-on-coil units rarely, if ever, sell for less than $2500, and are more often in beds in the $3500 plus range.
I have looked into them quite extensively and have read the forum post that was written about the company and they seem to be a great company, I was emailed back very quickly by the CEO about a question that i asked about the mattress. I was told the ILD was between 30-50 depending on the comfort mattress chosen. I was wondering if you have ever looked into the poly foam provider, off-gassing or have found out how the comfort layers may hold up over time. I am looking for a mattress in their general price range and they look great for the price and for what the product features. Anything more would be helpful.
I switched your post and my previous comments to a new Saatva thread (to keep them together and for easier reference) and also updated my previous comments in the first post of this thread which would still apply as far as my opinions of the relative quality and value of their mattresses.
Comfort specs of the polyfoam (such as ILD) or individual layers are not as helpful without a reference point based on your personal testing with similar combinations of materials because all the layers interact together. Their general firmness descriptions would probably be a better way to make a selection than the "specs" of individual parts of the mattress.
While they may be better value than some of the mattresses they are comparing themselves to (which are all significantly overpriced anyway) and their comparisons are also somewhat misleading, they don't compare nearly as well to other better quality and value mattresses that are also available.
That's a pretty broad question and it would depend on exactly what you were looking for because there would be hundreds or perhaps thousands of mattresses that have better value.
You can see here that Leggett & Platt, one of the major manufacturers of microcoils that are used in mattresses (and these are higher quality than is used in the Saatva) promotes them to their customers (the mattress manufacturers) as being less expensive than specialty layers (like latex and memory foam).
If you are committed to using microcoils in your mattress and are only looking at this component as an option ... then all of these are examples of microcoil mattresses from a single factory direct manufacturer out of (many manufacturers across the country that make them) that uses much higher quality components in every layer of their microcoil mattresses (click on the mattresses and then click on details to see what is in them) and have much better value.
An example of even higher quality "microcoil" mattresses that use even better quality components and also have much better value is here .
An example of a larger manufacturer (Restonic) that makes one that uses lower quality materials (like the Saatva) and has better value is here .
Of course I could spend all day looking for many more specific examples but hopefully you have the idea of why I wrote what I did and why I didn't think so highly of the Saatva or in particular some of the information on their site.
Comparing mattresses by materials instead of "marketing stories" and finding manufacturers and better outlets that make this easy is always the simplest and most effective way to find the best quality and value in a mattress.
Thank you for all the information, and time taken to respond. I am looking at both Parklane and Rocky Mountain as options, I am just having trouble deciding on a model and type of mattress. I am a recently separated Army veteran and so is my significant other so beds have been a number of surfaces in the past. We want a combo sleeping mattress, soft yet supportive. Also does Parklane offer any discount as being a forum member?
Parklane is a member of this site and would be a great choice if you were local to them. They don't offer a discount to forum members but a "bonus" instead. I used them as an example of the types of mattress you were asking about because I knew that they made them. Rocky Mountain mattress is also a member of the site that specializes in online purchases and has the knowledge and experience to help their customers make good choices based on "averages" of people who have similar body types and sleeping styles. They offer a 5% discount to forum members. The list of manufacturing and retail members of the site, which ones focus on local purchases and which on national purchases and the bonus/discount they offer is here .
Generally though ... the "best" first step is to do some local testing to get a sense of the types of mattresses and materials you prefer. In many cases there may be local value that is equivalent to what is available online (in which case you have the ability to test the actual mattress you end up buying which is less risky). In other cases ... local testing can give you a set of guidelines about which type of mattress purchase online may work best for you and help the online outlet to help you more effectively.
If you let me know the city or zip you live ... I'd be happy to let you know of any better manufacturers or outlets I'm aware of that are close to you.
Posts #2 and #4 in here has a list of factory direct manufacturers that are close to you. A look at their sites shows that at least two of them make microcoil mattresses (Sigma and Flybynight which sells the Berkeley ergonomics I linked earlier) and some of the others may as well (a few quick calls will find out). They would also give you the chance to test this type of component against other options to see how it feels for you in "real life".
You have some very good options available to you within reasonable driving distance
Hi, I came across your forum while searching for reviews on Saatva beds and once I read your blog, I decided to register onto the site. I, likewise, would like some advice for buying a quality bed after being very disappointed with the regular methods. My main concerns are, of course, quality and support but also a bed that sleeps cool. That's why we believe a foam bed is probably not an option and why we were considering a micro coil one like the Saatva. We also prefer a bed constructed of safe materials and that doesn't have that terrible odor that our current bed had when we bought it 6 yrs ago. We live in central Florida (Ocala) so any advice you can offer would be greatly appreciated.
Post #1 here has a step by step guideline and some links to articles and information that will greatly increase your odds of finding a great quality and value mattress (and eliminate most of the worst choices).
The better options that I'm aware of in the Ocala area (or within reasonable driving distance) are listed in post #2 here .
There are many factors involved in the temperature regulation of a mattress including the materials in the mattress (especially the upper layers), the quilting and ticking in the cover, your mattress protector, and your sheets and bedding. All of these combine to play an important role in the microclimate and temperature regulation of the mattress. There is more about this in post #2 here .
Memory foam, and polyfoam that are either CertiPur certified or American made would generally be considered to be "safe" by most people (even though they have an initial smell) but there are also many who prefer to avoid polyfoam and memory foam and synthetic fibers and fabrics in their mattress altogether because they are less natural petrochemical based materials and they believe that natural materials are "safer". Some of these foams or fibers may also include some unknown fire retardant chemicals which many people also wish to avoid. In these cases ... Innersprings, latex foam, and natural or organic fibers and fabrics can make good choices.
Thanks for the feedback and sharing your experiences with Saatva.
It's great to hear that their customer service is good.
In their return policy it mentions that their return policy deducts the original shipping cost and I'd be interested to hear what it cost you to return it and how much they deduct for the original shipping. This may help others decide on the "risk" involved in making a purchase from them that doesn't end up fitting what they are looking for.
I'm probably in the same boat as many who are trying to navigate the BS of the mattress industry to find a good quality bed without all the 'used car' schmarmyness. Like many, I found Saatva online in some research. I went to their site and was just about ready to purchase one but the practical side of me kicked in as it was just before the holidays and I didn't want to deal with the possibility of having to return/exchange a bed in the middle of the stress of Christmas. Shortly after I decided not to buy the bed, I received an email from Saatva asking why I didn't buy. When I answered honestly that I didn't want to deal with the possibility of having to return/exchange a bed during the holiday season, I was 'asked' to pass on Saatva by a Saatva rep who felt I wasn't their ideal customer:
"We are not right for everyone. Yes, we do not have one single negative review on our product in any city of any state. Our return policy simply assures the customer of our confidence in our quality and in your happiness , hence, again, our fantastic reviews.
If you are very focused on simply testing our mattress and the return policy, we so respectfully ask that you take a pass on us. I say this with more courtesy and respect than you can imagine. We get a miniscule of returns as the Saatva purchaser is already very convinced before they buy.
We really appreciate your interest and truly wish you all good things that your life can offer."
At first, I thought it was just a weird and somewhat flighty response. Then things got weirder when I explained to them that I wasn't 'focused' on trying and returning, simply wanted to wait until I wasn't dealing with the holidays AND buying a bed:
> Email tones and interpretations are so misleading. My apology and it is
> my apology in such a genuine way yt an email cannot portray it just as my
> intentions are so misinterpreted by you.
> I am so sorry. My objective is to make the buying experience followed by
> the experience of years of sleeping on a Saatva so wonderful
> I have cause you annoyance and concern. I repeat, I am sorry and I also
> repeat that as you do take a pass on Saatva, as one man to another,
> please focus on my apology coupled with two other things:
> 1. I understand your comments well.
> 2.. I truly wish you very well in health and happiness.
In short, this is just a bizarre way to run a business. It is ridiculous in so many ways, I don't even know where to start. It may be a great bed, it may not, but I'm pretty sure I don't need to deal with a company like this.
Just want people to have a full and complete picture as to the nature of this company. It seems the only way they can preserve their appearance is by selectively screening out people who may ask more questions than they are willing to address.