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Comfort layer question - 2" vs 3" 17 Nov 2013 01:09 #1

Hi Phoenix, I think I've almost it narrowed down to 2 mattresses!

6" dunlop core (31 ILD)
2" or 3" tatalay comfort layer (22-24 ILD)
Me: 5'10 - 165lbs
Wife: 5' - 95lbs

For some reason, when my wife and I went to try out different comfort layer thicknesses (2" vs 3") with the same ILDs (both core and comfort the same), we found much better fill (pressure point and support in our curves) with the 2". I felt like I was slightly floating on top of the the support layer of the 3" - not as much sinking and pressure point consistency of the 2". Our posture was pretty straight with both though. My wife even mentioned she could feel warmness in her lumbar area because it filled in that curve with the 2", whereas the 3" didn't (maybe it was in her head...haha).

Does 2" comfort layer tend to feel softer than the 3" comfort layer in the same ILD?

Now that I think of it, maybe I should have asked for 3" support layer in a softer ILD. I always figured more the better?

Why choose one layer thickness over the other?

Thanks Phoenix!

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Comfort layer question - 2" vs 3" 17 Nov 2013 09:15 #2

kenzo wrote: Hi Phoenix, I think I've almost it narrowed down to 2 mattresses!

6" dunlop core (31 ILD)
2" or 3" tatalay comfort layer (22-24 ILD)
Me: 5'10 - 165lbs
Wife: 5' - 95lbs

For some reason, when my wife and I went to try out different comfort layer thicknesses (2" vs 3") with the same ILDs (both core and comfort the same), we found much better fill (pressure point and support in our curves) with the 2". I felt like I was slightly floating on top of the the support layer of the 3" - not as much sinking and pressure point consistency of the 2". Our posture was pretty straight with both though. My wife even mentioned she could feel warmness in her lumbar area because it filled in that curve with the 2", whereas the 3" didn't (maybe it was in her head...haha).

Does 2" comfort layer tend to feel softer than the 3" comfort layer in the same ILD?

Now that I think of it, maybe I should have asked for 3" support layer in a softer ILD. I always figured more the better?

Why choose one layer thickness over the other?

Thanks Phoenix!


*For the given core ILD*, with only 2" on top, your given profile is reaching the firmer support core sooner, so you are feeling that firmness/pressure not unlike how you would feel it if you laid on it directly, except the 2" spreads it into your sensitive gaps instead of just to your less sensitive bearing points (boney structures). At 3", you are being held off the core more with better pressure distribution... floating.

If you can 'feel' the pressure in the gaps at 2" when you lay down, this may become painful by the time you wake up. Barely 'floating' is good if your alignment is ok.

zzz

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Comfort layer question - 2" vs 3" 17 Nov 2013 11:37 #3

Hi kenzo,

The feel of a mattress can be very subjective but your experience with a 2" comfort layer vs a 3" comfort goes against "theory" and how most people would perceive it.

That doesn't mean that it's "wrong" (each person's experience is unique to them) but only that in general thicker comfort layers of the same material on the same support layer would technically (and for most people experientially) be softer not firmer and would "fill in the gaps" with more material and be more compressed under the recessed curves of the body than a thinner comfort layer (because you would sink into it more deeply so there would be more contact with the recessed parts of the body with a thicker comfort layer).

As sleeping mentioned ... thicker toppers = better weight distribution and pressure rlief (up to a certain maximum point) and better pressure relief = a softer feel (again for most people).

If both of you are feeling the same thing then it's also possible that the layers are different in more ways than just the thickness of the comfort layers.

If you think of a 2" topper on the floor you can imagine the comparison and you would feel more of the floor "through" the topper under your bony pressure points than you would with a 3" topper but it wouldn't fill in the recessed gaps in your body profile as well as a 3" topper of the same material because you would sink in more deeply into the 3" topper. Whether this was a positive or negative would depend on your body type, sleeping positions, and personal preferences (although with a single topper on a floor instead of a support layer a 3" layer would mostly be a "positive" :)).

What something "feels like" is much more subjective and it's not unusual at all that it can be at odds with what is actually happening from a more "technical" perspective based on individual perceptions.

The bottom line ... and the reason to choose one thickness over another ... is that PPP (Posture and alignment, Pressure relief, and Personal preferences) in all your sleeping positions is the most important factor when you are making comparisons.

Phoenix
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Last edit: by phoenix.

Comfort layer question - 2" vs 3" 17 Nov 2013 12:43 #4

Phoenix wrote: If you think of a 2" topper on the floor you can imagine the comparison and you would feel more of the floor "through" the topper under your bony pressure points than you would with a 3" topper but it wouldn't fill in the recessed gaps in your body profile as well as a 3" topper of the same material because you would sink in more deeply into the 3" topper. Whether this was a positive or negative would depend on your body type, sleeping positions, and personal preferences (although with a single topper on a floor instead of a support layer a 3" layer would mostly be a "positive" :)).

Phoenix


True, but... their core is at the other end of the range... a rather soft, more contouring core ILD, not much firmer than a medium comfort layer; and their slim weights suggests that they have modest gaps that may be filled by a 2+" comfort layer... so that their core is behaving more like a progressive comfort layer, firming things up *everywhere* sooner under 2" than under 3", not just in the gaps. The perceived difference at 2" is more support, less float in the gaps... but it's actually everywhere.

zzz

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Comfort layer question - 2" vs 3" 17 Nov 2013 13:09 #5

Hi sleeping,

The perceived difference at 2" is more support, less float in the gaps... but it's actually everywhere.


This actually isn't correct although it's certainly true that a 2" comfort layer may provide better overall alignment for some people depending on their body type and sleeping positions.

If all other factors are equal ... a thinner comfort layer will be less pressure relieving and more "supportive" under the hips (the firmness of the deeper layers will "come through" more and the primary support directly under the hips/pelvis will be more) which can lead to a more neutral alignment (depending on the amount of pelvic tilt which is a major factor in spinal alignment ... especially of the lumbar spine) but the "secondary support" directly under the recessed lumbar curve or the waist would be less with a thinner comfort layer because the material would be less compressed and less firm than it would with a thicker layer where the material is compressed more under the lumbar curve and waist. In other words it would depend on which part of the body you were talking about and the "support" along the entire body profile wouldn't be greater with a thinner comfort layer ... only under the parts that are heavier and sink in more and "reach" the support layer more quickly.

If someone is lighter and has more "modest gaps" or if they are back or stomach sleepers then a thinner comfort layer can certainly be a more suitable choice (thicker comfort layers may lead to their pelvis sinking in too much relative to the rest of their body and their body type which tilts the pelvis and can lead to misalignment of the lumbar spine) but this isn't because the 3" comfort layer is firmer (it's softer) or just because the support under the lumbar curve is more (which it would be) but because the overall design of the mattress is a better match for them in terms of alignment. Neutral alignment of the spine is a result of pelvic tilt in combination with the amount of support under the recessed curves of the spine (as well as whether the shoulders are "allowed" to sink in enough which is more about the alignment of the upper body).

If everything else is equal (type of support core and the ILD of the comfort layer) ... a thicker comfort layer will always be measurably softer (it will compress more under any weight) and you will sink in more relative to a thinner comfort layer of the same ILD regardless of body weight. This can be either beneficial or detrimental depending on the person.

Phoenix
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Last edit: by phoenix.
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