You know that smell that sometimes comes from a new carpet or worse, a new mattress.
These are often chemicals used in the manufacturing process.
But as Consumer Reports explains, there are mattresses made without so many potentially harmful chemicals.
CR experts reveal which top performers also have fewer chemicals, plus linens to complement your new bed.
When shopping online for a new mattress, you will likely come across the term “outgassing.” This is basically the chemical smell you notice when you cut the wrapping around a new mattress.
What you actually smell are volatile organic compounds, or VOCs.
Consumer Reports says you can choose a mattress with less VOCs. Start by looking at the labeling.
But don’t be fooled by a mattress labeled “natural,” as there is no formal certification for what it means. And a mattress can be labeled “organic” even if it only contains a small amount of organic material.
CR says a reliable label is the Global Organic Textile Standard, or GOTS.
It requires that the materials used in a mattress contain a minimum amount of certified organic material and ensures that no hazardous chemical flame retardants and polyurethane foam have been used to make it.
You will find a similar standard for latex mattresses with the GOLS label, or Global Organic Latex Standard.
But the labels don’t matter if your mattress isn’t comfortable.
That’s why CR performs tests that include determining the ability of a mattress to support sleepers of different sizes in different positions.
If you like a firmer mattress, the Avocado Green for $ 1,600 (certified by GOLS and GOTS) does a great job of keeping a sleeper’s spine aligned, regardless of size.
My Green Mattress Natural Escape for $ 1,500 (also certified by GOTS and GOLS) is another great option for all types and sizes of sleepers.
If you prefer a softer mattress, consider the Birch by Helix Natural mattress for $ 1,299 (GOTS).
Its support is just average for tall or tall side sleepers, but CR testing has found it to be suitable for everyone.
And once you have your new mattress, ditch the synthetic polyester sheets and go for cotton.
CR recommends a 100% cotton set, the LLBean Pima Cotton Percale, for $ 149 (queen size).
CR says that when it comes to buying linens, you don’t have to spend a fortune on more thread count. Tests have shown that this does not necessarily mean better durability.
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