We all want to sleep well. A good night’s sleep is important for a productive day. And the comfier pillow you have, the better you will sleep.
In this complete buyers guide, I will guide you through everything you need to know about latex pillows. Whether or not latex is the right material type for you, if it’s safe to use, provide you with a detailed review of the best latex pillows currently on the market and much more.
So, without further ado, let’s get to it.
What is a Latex Pillow?
Latex pillows are pillows made out of either natural/organic or synthetic materials.
Natural latex is tapped from the rubber tree (Hevea Brasiliensis), while synthetic latex is made from petroleum products, similar to memory foam.
The most common compounds used in making synthetic rubber are Styrene and Butadiene. Synthetic latex is sometimes referred to as SBR (Styrene-Butadiene Rubber). The pillows are made from the latex using either the Dunlop method or the Talalay process.
What’s The Difference Between Natural Latex and Synthetic Latex?
Natural latex is odor-free, eco-friendly, and more durable than synthetic latex. It is also softer and ideal for people prone to allergies as it is chemical-free. The downside is that it is more expensive than synthetic latex, denser and heavier and also not as available as synthetic latex.
Synthetic rubber has unpleasant chemical odors which could trigger allergies in some people. It also has a larger carbon footprint and is thus less eco-friendly. However, it is cheaper and more available as compared to natural latex. It has a shorter lifespan as compared to natural latex. Another disadvantage is that it is easier to break down and flatten.
Why Should You Use a Latex Pillow?
Latex pillows are a fairly popular option and for good reasons. There are many great benefits of sleepin on latex, with the biggest ones being:
- They provide great support as the latex molds around your contours
- They are silent in that they don’t squeak or rustle as other similar materials tend to do
- They are durable as latex is the most durable pillow type material that exists
- They maintain ideal temperature
- They are hypoallergenic
- They are often recommended by doctors and physios to alleviate pain and pressure as you sleep
- They are environmentally conscious and eco-friendly, at least the natural latex.
With that said, like most things there aren’t only benefits, some of latex pillows drawbacks include:
- They are fairly expensive
- Their availability is limited compared to other types of pillows
- They are made from a molding process, so variery is limited
- They are heavy
- The synthetic latex has a chemical smell when new
- They are difficult to clean and dry
If you want to learn more about the benefits and drawbacks listed above, and if a latex pillow is for you, you can do so by reading our post: Why Should You Use A Latex Pillow? The Pros and Cons
Latex vs. Memory Foam Pillows: Which is better?
Since memory foam and latex are somewhat similar and share many properties, such as their ability to mold to the contours of your body and in doing so provide great support, a lot of people wonder if they should get a memory foam or a latex pillow.
So, how are they similar and how are they different? Well, here’s how:
Latex and Memory Foam Similarities
- They are both high-density options that are great at relieving pressure points.
- They both help with pain by offering uniform support to the head and neck.
- They are both more durable than most other pillow materials.
- Neither pillow needs to be “fluffed up” since they each hold their original shape.
Latex and Memory Foam Differences
- Latex are available as both natural and synthetic material, while memory foam is available as synthetic only.
- Memory foam has a slower response to pressure compared to latex as it’s initially much firmer than latex.
- Latex allows for better air flow and sleeps cooler than memory foam.
- Latex pillows are hypoallergenic, resistant to mold, mildew, and dust mites. Memory foam pillows are not completelly hypoallergenic.
- Latex are a bit more expensive than memory foam.
So, which pillow should you go for? Should you choose latex or memory foam? Well, hopefully these similarities and differences listed above can help you decide. With that said, there’s another things to consider before making a decision, and that is your preferred sleepin position.
If you want to learn more about whether latex or memory foam is best for you and your sleeping position, check out our post: Latex vs Memory Foam Pillows: What’s the difference and which is better?
If you want to learn more about memory foam pillows, check out our complete buyers guide here: Memory Foam Pillows: A complete buyers guide
Are Latex Pillows Safe? What about the smell?
One common question people have about latex is whether or not it’s a safe material. Afterall, most latex items come with a rubber-like smell when new, which is alerting to a lot of people.
But, the fact is that latex is safe for most people. Latex pillows are hypoallergenic and don’t contain carcinogens that can cause diseases. Thus, there is no toxic off-gassing. And the rubber-like smell that comes with new latex pillows isn’t dangerous and can be treated within a few days.
The only people that latex is not safe for are those who have latex allergy. A latex allergy is when your body’s immune system overreacts to certain kinds of proteins found in natural rubber latex.
You can read more about the safety of latex pillows and how to get rid of the rubber-like smell in our post: Are Latex Pillows Safe? What about the smell?
How Long Do Latex Pillows Last?
One big advantage of latex is that it’s a very durable material. So if you decide to go with a latex pillow, you will likely not need to replace it as often as you would pillows made from certain other materials.
Most manufacturers state that the average latex pillow should last at least four years. However, if properly maintained and cared for, your latex pillow could last even longer.
You will probably want to replace your latex pillow once you experience some of the following things:
- When damaged – Although not intentionally, we can damage our pillows. That could come from running them through a washer or dryer many, many times or from wringing them out in the water. These cleaning methods can warp a latex pillow and cause it to be less supportive. When this happens, and your pillow lacks support and is more like a ragged doll, it’s time to replace it.
- Loses form and support abilities – Latex pillows are great to conform to the neck and head initially. But after a while, as with any pillow, they break down from wear and tear and lose this ability. If your pillow is no longer supporting you like it used to, it’s time for a new one.
- You change – Some pillows are designed with a specific sleeping position in mind, and your sleeping position can change over time. If that’s the case, your latex pillow may no longer be the right pillow for you, and it’s time to replace it.
- Hygiene – Even though you may clean your pillow regularly, it’s still possible that some stains are not removable. Stains can accumulate from oils, sweat, or spills. When you find that no matter how much you clean, the stains are not coming out, it’s best to replace the pillow because they can work against the hypoallergenic properties of the pillow.
- Allergic reactions – If you find yourself with allergy symptoms, it could be from your pillow. Even though latex pillows have hypoallergenic properties, it may be possible that it has broken down over time, especially if you’ve had it a while. The other thing you could do is switch out your pillowcase. It may even be that you’ve developed a latex allergy. If this is the case, you will definitely want to replace your pillow.
You can read more about latex pillows replacement time as well as tips for making your latex pillow last longer in our post: How Long Do Latex Pillows Last? This is the replacement time
How to Wash And Dry a Latex Pillow
If you already own a latex pillow or if you decide to buy one, you’ll probably wonder how to clean it. Afterall, cleaning your pillow will make it last longer, which means you won’t need to replace your pillow(s) as often.
Now, there will be different reasons behind needing to clean your pillow, these stretch from regular maintenance/cleaning to removing tough spills etc.
Read our post: How to Wash And Dry a Latex Pillow: Step by step guide to learn how to clean it correctly.
The Best Latex Pillows Currently on The Market
Okay, so you’ve come to the end of this guide and perhaps you’ve learned that a latex pillow is exactly what you need. If that’s the case, we created a full guide and review of the best latex pillows currently on the market.
So, if you’re interested in an unbiased review of the best latex pillows currently available, you can check out that post here.