What is a Latex Pillow?
In the bedding market, latex is often compared to memory foam. Many people think of latex as one step up from memory foam or as a higher quality version of memory foam. This is probably because mattresses and pillows made from latex are priced a bit higher than memory foam pillows and mattresses.
While latex and memory foam are similar in how they perform inside a mattress or pillow, they are two very different types of foam that come into the world through very different processes. In order to determine whether a memory foam or latex pillow is best for your sleep needs, you have to understand what latex is and what the benefits are of using it.
What is Latex?
Natural latex is a substance that comes from the sap of the rubber tree. It comes out as a liquid substance that looks similar to milk, but when exposed to air proves to be nothing at all like the milk you consume with your cereal in the morning. This milky white substance is actually particles of rubber with enough water to make them appear more liquid in nature.
When this substance is mixed with air it takes the form of latex foam. The process of making latex for pillows and mattresses involves whipping air into the natural milky substance and then heating it up to create the harder foam that cradles your head and neck when you lie down on a latex pillow.
That is the basic process of creating latex foam. There are different methods that can be used to create different types of latex foam. What you should basically understand here is that latex foam comes from a natural source and thus has some benefits that aren’t attributed to memory foam pillows.
Benefits of Latex Pillows
Just like memory foam pillows, a latex foam pillow will compress under the weight of your head for excellent support of the neck, head and shoulders. This compression allows the foam to surround the natural shape of the head and neck area so pressure points do not have to form in order to support the head in this rested position.
The difference is latex foams tend to be even firmer than memory foam and tend to last much longer. Many find latex pillows offer superior support for longer periods of time when compared to memory foam pillows.
Since it comes from a natural substance, latex pillows are also resistant to microbes, bed bugs, and allergens. They do not provide a hospitable environment for bugs, dust mites, and other things that could lead to allergic reactions in humans and pets. This is why latex is often considered the only way to go for families who have members with severe allergy problems.
While memory foam traps in air and tends to be very hot to sleep on, most don’t have those problems with latex. A latex pillow can actually breathe more so they tend to be warmer in the winter months and a bit cooler in the summer months. This of course depends what type of latex pillow you purchase and how much air and how many holes were incorporated into the design.
Types of Latex Pillows
Most latex pillows are typically called latex pillows, or organic latex pillows, but you may come across some that contain Talalay latex. Pillows made from this type of latex can be substantially higher in price than memory foam pillows. This is because it is top-of-the-line as latex foam is considered. Many consider this the best of the best in the mattress and pillow industry today.
What makes talalay latex different from other latex products is simply the way it is processed. It incorporates a mold with rods and evenly distributes the rubber latex for very resilient, long lasting latex foam in the end. The process is more elaborate and the final product is superior to other latex foams and memory foam. This is why the prices are understandably higher.
Selecting Latex Pillows
It helps if you can rest your head on a latex pillow before making a purchase. It is difficult to understand the differences between latex and memory foam without this firsthand comparison. In general, you can think of latex pillows as a springier, more supportive version of memory foam pillows.
This is not a completely accurate analysis though, considering the many different densities of memory foam and different types and densities of latex in use. This is why it is important to read latex pillow reviews and memory foam pillow reviews before making a final decision.