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Category Archives: Mattress Support

Dunlop vs. Talalay Latex

You may have heard OMI refer to our two lines of mattresses as “certified organic” or “100% natural.” What exactly do those terms mean, and what are the differences between the two? The difference is in the method of manufacturing the latex and the organic certification process: organic Dunlop vs. natural Talalay. Our Certified-Organic Mattresses are made using Dunlop latex only, whereas our 100%-Natural Mattresses are made using Talalay latex. The two processes both start with a botanical sap. However, the Dunlop we make our mattresses out of begins with a USDA-certified sap, whereas Talalay does not.

Extracting Rubber Sap: 

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The rubber sap that is used to manufacture both Dunlop and Talalay latex is harvested from sustainable plantations in Southeast Asia. The sap is extracted by cutting the bark of the rubber tree to allow the white sap to flow out. This method allows the tree to heal rapidly, and is the eco-friendly alternative to cutting down trees for latex extraction. Each tree can yield latex for up to 30 years, and is then harvested for furniture wood. The land is then replanted.

Dunlop:

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The Dunlop manufacturing process was created in 1929, and was the first method developed for producing latex. The USDA (United States Department of Agriculture) certified-organic rubber sap is whipped into a froth (to aerate), and is then poured into a mold or onto a long conveyor belt. The latex is then slowly steam-baked into its solid state. Originally this process produced denser, less uniform latex, but over time the method has been refined to produce the even, consistent latex we use today. The finished core is then certified to GOLS (the Global Organic Latex Standard), allowing us to make 100% certified organic mattresses as the end result.

Talalay:

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The Talalay family developed the Talalay manufacturing process during World War II. This method adds two additional steps to give the latex a more consistent cell structure: After the sap is whipped into a froth (to aerate) and poured into a mold, the mold is vacuum-sealed and the latex flash-frozen to keep particles from settling. The latex is then flash heated into its solid form.

The addition of these two steps (vacuum sealing and flash freezing) in the Talalay method is the main difference between Dunlop and Talalay, besides the organic certification and purity assurance. Many people still associate Dunlop latex with being a denser, less consistent product, but this is simply no longer true. Both methods have been refined over time to produce the uniform and supportive latex we use at OMI.

Insomnia: Causes and Effects

Everyone has had a sleepless night here and there, whether it is because of an exciting event the next day or one too many cups of coffee. For one-third of Americans, insomnia is a nightly problem that affects their daily lives.

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There are a variety of causes that can be attributed to this problem. For some it can be caused by stress at home or work, a change in location, depression, anxiety, or certain medical conditions. For others it may be about sleep habits and environment. Some people eat poorly and too late in the day, others do not have a steady sleep schedule, and most have an unsupportive and uncomfortable mattress.

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There are many long-term effects that can result from insomnia. It can slow reaction times, result in poor performance at work, or cause weight gain or loss, irritability, anxiety, or depression, and it may put you at a higher risk for high blood pressure, heart disease, and diabetes.

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A proper environment and schedule are key to getting great sleep, night after night. Setting up a sleeping and eating schedule can dramatically help with insomnia. Eat healthy foods earlier in the evening and make sure to give yourself a dedicated 8 hours of sleep per night. Also it is important to have a comfortable and supportive mattress. This will help to keep you from waking in the night from aches and pains. For more serious or continual insomnia cases, please seek help from a doctor.

Foundations 101: Understanding Support and Function

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When buying a new bed, you might generally think about finding the right mattress, then dressing up your bed with new linens.  Often the foundation for a mattress is completely overlooked.  A foundation not only provides support, but can also help the mattress in other ways.

First, the foundation ensures proper air circulation, which helps lessen the chance of mold and mildew.  Second, it provides fabric-to-fabric contact so the mattress does not rub against a rough surface such as the wood or metal of a frame. Lastly, it allows you to adjust the height of the mattress from the floor.

Natural rubber mattresses are recommended to be placed on wood-slat foundations, while innerspring mattresses should be placed on box-spring foundations.

OMI offers both types of foundation:

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Our 8″ box-spring foundation is constructed with 2″-thick boards of cabinet-grade, untreated, kiln-dried fir. The heavy-duty steel springs (free of potential toxins from solvents and oils) are covered with a layer of durable organic cotton canvas, padded with organic cotton batting, then upholstered with the same organic quilting materials as our mattresses.

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Our wood-slat foundation is made of cabinet-grade, untreated, kiln-dried fir. A layer of durable organic canvas is placed over the 2″-thick boards, padded with certified organic cotton and pure wool batting, and upholstered with the same organic quilting as our mattresses. Slats are spaced approximately 2.5″ apart. The wood-slat foundation is made in several different heights: 2”, 3.5”, 8”, 10”, and 12.”

You don’t need a foundation if you have a platform bed. The slats on the platform bed should be between 2” and 3” apart and between 2” and 3” wide.  If your platform bed consists of a solid surface, the mattress will not ventilate properly and will be subject to mold or mildew. We recommend our Wool Underbed Pad to protect your mattress from rubbing on the slats and developing wear over time.

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For more information about OMI or to find a retailer near you, click HERE.

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