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Why is some memory foam very greasy feeling, like it's wet?

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03 Jul 2019 18:50 #1 by SleepDeprived
Hello, I've been a member here for several years but the forum seems to have changed and I cannot figure out if I'm posting my question the right way, so hopefully bear with me.

In the course of shopping for memory foam, I've noticed how differently they can feel from one another. Some are close to feeling like regular polyurethane foams while others have a very wet, greasy feel that tends to crush down to a hard layer and I don't like the feel of them.
Is there a different name for these or some way to tell from a description which type it is?

I keep reading gel, gel infused, isotonic, etc., but I don't know what that is telling me about what this memory foam is going to feel like.

And while I'm at it, what is the proper way to post a new question to the forum? Thanks.

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06 Jul 2019 14:34 #2 by Phoenix
Hi SleepDeprived,

Welcome back and thanks for your post. I moved your question to a new thread; at the moment we have the "post new topic" thread open only from the expert dedicated forums while we add new user-friendly features and perform development work in the backend of the site.

In the course of shopping for memory foam, I've noticed how differently they can feel from one another. Some are close to feeling like regular polyurethane foams while others have a very wet, greasy feel that tends to crush down to a hard layer and I don't like the feel of them Is there a different name for these or some way to tell from a description which type it is?.


Generally speaking, it would be practically impossible to keep track of products that would have issues like the one you mention compared to others that do not. There are many brand names, manufacturers, and formulations for memory foam and poly products to tell just “by description” which type it is and how they are likely to feel like for any particular person. Instead, TMU experts advise focussing on firstly finding out the density and ILD/IFD specifications of memory and poly foams that will allow to asses the durability and comfort of any component within the mattress to predict how well you will sleep and most importantly how long you will sleep well on any particular mattresses.

As far as “wet, greasy feel”… it depends… exceptionally good, high-density memory foams with very low ILD can feel “wet, greasy”... sometimes lower quality foams can feel this way because of fillers (such as oils) and cheap additives that will cause softening and body impressions over time. In short, to be able to comment upon it we'd need more detailed information ... description/definition and density/ILD specifications. Feel free to add this info and we'll be glad to further assist with this.

I’d also keep in mind that different gel formulations and combinations among mattress manufacturers are mostly trying to create branding stories and the perception that their version is better than anyone else. Gel materials themselves (soft solid materials) in other industries have existed for a long time but their use in mattresses only goes back in the range of about 10 years or so and the gel memory foams and the gel category itself was made much more popular when Serta introduced the iComfort in early 2011and became a big marketing success which was copied by most other manufacturers. It also led to sales that helped propel Serta past Sealy to become one of the largest manufacturers in the country.

You can read a few more details about gel memory foams and materials in post # 2 .
I hope that information helps you out in your search.
Phoenix

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15 Jul 2019 13:19 #3 by SleepDeprived
Thank you, Phoenix, I was afraid you'd say that all these terms are pretty much meaningless. It's so difficult when you are shopping online to know what to expect.

After 5 years on my SleepEZ latex bed, I feel like I need some kind of change but even after all of the reading and research and trying different mattresses, I do not know where to turn to get the attributes I need. I need a bed that will hold my spine in a neutral position but I also need a top layer that will give soft comfort and eliminate pressure points. I have pinched nerves in my lower & upper back and neck that cause pain issues. Unfortunately, every time I add a topper to my latex bed, I end up sinking in at my hips and losing the neutral spine position.

If you go with a mattress that holds your spine neutral, it always seems to be a hard, firm mattress that doesn't cushion your bones at all, but if you go with a soft, cushy mattress, your spine sags and it puts pressure on those pinched nerves. How in the heck do you find a mattress that satisfies both requirements? Can it be done or is it always a trade-off?

I have tried 2 other mattresses and neither has worked for me. Both times I went back to my SleepEZ because even though the latex bothers me, at least it's better. Purple and Tuft & Needle Mint were both too firm. I end up turning over all night because my shoulder and hip fall asleep, and I got a lot of discomfort because my shoulder doesn't sink in at all, so my spine gets a crick in it between my shoulder blades.

Help!

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19 Jul 2019 00:17 #4 by Phoenix
Hi SleepDprived,

After 5 years on my SleepEZ latex bed, I feel like I need some kind of change but even after all of the reading and research and trying different mattresses, I do not know where to turn to get the attributes I need. I need a bed that will hold my spine in a neutral position but I also need a top layer that will give soft comfort and eliminate pressure points. I have pinched nerves in my lower & upper back and neck that cause pain issues. Unfortunately, every time I add a topper to my latex bed, I end up sinking in at my hips and losing the neutral spine position.
If you go with a mattress that holds your spine neutral, it always seems to be a hard, firm mattress that doesn't cushion your bones at all, but if you go with a soft, cushy mattress, your spine sags and it puts pressure on those pinched nerves.


I'd be curious to know what is the most recent topper you added to your latex mattress? Latex topper? /What is the configuration and version of the Sleep EZ mattress you purchased 5 years ago? Have you talked to Sleep EZ and described your new situation? You also have the option of asking them directly here is the link to Ask Sleep EZ a question on our mattress forum .

How in the heck do you find a mattress that satisfies both requirements? Can it be done or is it always a trade-off?


It’s really hard to find the right balance, and it's even harder for people with several chronical health conditions and pains. While finding "a mattress that satisfies both requirements" is at best difficult for a sleeper with health conditions and high sensitivities ... IMO it CAN be done ... but you'd be needing more careful testing, collecting data, and research. Also depending on your condition and level of sensitivity, you may be right that some trade-offs may need to be made ... from bed design, zoning, layer constructions, choice of foundation, even the covering fabric, etc.

Our mattress forum has multiple related topics that you may wish to peruse and see what solutions other people with similar experiences have found. Some of the forum posts that talk about fine-tuning a mattress and may help you recognize or "diagnose" the underlying cause of different types of "symptoms", pain, or discomfort that may be connected to a mattress include ...
For most people adding a topper to a firmer sleeping surface can solve "too firm" issue you mentioned, but in your case dealing with back pain and pinched nerves can be very frustrating because there are many more variables involved and it is difficult to pinpoint the underlying cause. It may take quite a bit of trial and error and collecting the data with changing only one variable at a time for a long period of time to get closer to the best mattress match with any level of certainty... It is hard to say .... maybe you did not find the right support/comfort combination or the layer thickness is not quite right, or both, or even ...what is "the best" a mattress can do for you ... or it may be just as simple as ... the comfort layers are too thick and soft for your needs.

You certainly have to approach this with patience and do some careful and objective testing for PPP (Posture and alignment, Pressure relief, and Personal preferences) on the specific combination in person using the testing guidelines in the mattress shopping tutorial . Deciding on a topper that would be a good match for both you and the mattress (the specifics of the mattress can make a significant difference in which topper would work best for you) can be almost as challenging as buying a new mattress in the first place.

I do think it is some combination of a latex mattress would work best for you. Reasonable success from Sleep EZ and not a good experience with others, and having to find a “tight window” of support/comfort....my instinct points this way.

Hope this helps ... let me know how else we can help.
Phoenix

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