Futons have become a must-have item for every home or dorm mainly because they are comfortable and versatile. They not only provide additional seating but also convert easily into extra beds for unexpected guests. There are so many materials that can be used to make it that choosing the right one is a challenge. Latex is well known for being one of the best materials used for mattresses, but can you use it as a futon?
Can a Latex Mattress Be Used as a Futon?
Yes, you can use a latex mattress as a futon. Latex mattresses are firm enough to support your body but also have enough flexibility to conform to your posture and body shape. They are one of the most relaxing materials to sleep on.
Why Get a Latex Mattress as a Futon?
Before anything else, what exactly is a futon? It is a traditional bedding stuffed with leaves, straw or cotton mainly used by the Japanese and Koreans. However, there is also a western counterpart which has three main parts. These are the frame, slipcover, and the futon mattress. Today, it typically means a folding bed that is filled with probably anything you can think of.
Choosing the right futon cushion is one of the first things you should do. There are plenty of choices out there but a latex mattress tops it all. Latex is made with organic compounds found in some plants. There are synthetic ones as well but they can emit gases and bit of odor which most people find off-putting. Most latex labeled mattress will have a mix of both. However, there are also plenty of organic latex mattresses in the market. Being all-natural and environment-friendly are also some of its biggest selling points.
Other than providing a great deal of comfort, a latex mattress is also quite durable. It can easily last five to seven years. Unlike cotton-filled futons that tend to be compressed and packed down over a period of time, thus not being able to support your weight after prolonged use, latex stays firm and retains its shape over time.
Though it is common to see mixed-layered futons, a good futon will need a good base or core in order to support your weight. A latex mattress gives you just that like the White Lotus Home Latex Mattress (view on Amazon). The mattress has a natural cotton and wool upper layer while having a latex core for support.
It is firm enough to put extra pressure to your hips, shoulders, and the contours of your body in order to provide the right support for your ligaments. About 1/3 of the people who own latex mattresses say that their back aches and pains have been greatly reduced when they started using the latex mattresses.
Choosing the Right Mattress for Your Futon Frame
There are several factors to consider when choosing the right latex mattress for your futon frame. Taking them into consideration will actually help you get it right the first time.
Sure, latex mattresses are great futon cushions but you must keep in mind that the thickness of your mattress matters. Remember that a futon can be a bed and a sofa at the same time and having a mattress that’s too thick will be a problem. It won’t be flexible enough to follow the frame. Be sure to purchase one that does not exceed six inches so that it will be pliable enough to fold and follow the futon frame.
Before you decide on which latex mattress to use as a futon, you must check on the mattress’ Impression Load Deflection or ILD. It measures how firm or soft the mattress is. Since latex is known to be firmer than its counterparts, make sure to check how much ILD you are comfortable with. Generally, an ILD of twenty-five to thirty-one will give medium softness while an ILD of twelve will be very soft and fifty will be quite firm. The Pure Green Latex Mattress (view on Amazon), for example, has an ILD of thirty. It provides adequate firmness, plus, it also provides great support for your body. It was also designed not to retain a lot of heat which is great.
Another important thing to keep in mind is that you don’t want a mattress that needs a long time to break in. A natural latex mattress will only need about thirty days to get rid of its extra firmness.
Most mattresses have several layers; if you can change out the first layer when you need to without replacing the whole thing then that would be a great plus. Most often than not, a latex mattress used as a futon will most probably have wool as its first layer, so be sure if you can have its first layer replaced once it starts to degrade.
You should also take note that synthetic latex doesn’t last as long as natural latex. At most it can last up to two years; however, it is certainly cheaper. Furthermore, synthetic latex also tends to compress than the natural one. If you tend to be on the heavy side, it would be better to get a mix of synthetic and natural latex mattress or an all-natural one as your futon.
Just take note that a natural latex mattress can be quite pricey compared to a synthetic one, although you can easily find discounts if you buy it online. Using a blended latex mattress is a great middle-ground. It might not be as durable compared to a natural latex mattress but it can still last longer than two years.
Though latex is known to retain heat, the all-natural latex does not retain as much. In fact, it is created to help in transferring heat rather than keeping it. Latex mattress like the Vytex Natural Latex Mattress (view on Amazon) is designed to not retain heat at all. Unlike most mattresses, it has a number of holes to expel heat and discourage moisture build-up. Meanwhile, a synthetic latex mattress is prone to be hotter compared to natural ones. If you want it to avoid retaining too much heat, check out if the mattress has a breathable cover.
A natural latex mattress typically is dust and mite resistant, making it a great choice as a futon. Latex is washed several times during the manufacturing process to get rid of all those fibers that can cause allergies. On the other hand, if you have severe allergies to latex, it best to practice more caution.
Latex mattresses typically have that rubbery smell in the first three days or so, but you don’t have to worry at all. A natural latex mattress usually does not have that smell or if it does, it will usually disappear within three days. However, synthetic latex mattresses are a different story. If you find the smell of rubber annoying then it would be better to get a blended or natural latex mattress as your futon. Synthetic mattresses take a longer to time for that smell to disappear.
Latex Futon Mattress Review
Take the time and read about the company you are thinking of purchasing your latex mattress from. You will often find that reputable companies have been there longer. This could mean that the longer they have been in the industry, the more they have studied and learned about the customer’s feedback. Nevertheless, do not make that as your deciding factor.
One way to check their product is by checking their customer reviews. It’s first-hand experience from those who have purchased the company’s mattresses. You can also search for product comparisons online.
Can I put a regular-sized mattress on a futon frame?
Yes, you can use a regular sized mattress. Most futon frames are big enough to accommodate a mattress. Just make sure that the length of the frame can hold the mattress’ length. So check the size of the mattress ahead before ordering.
Can I use a foam mattress on a futon frame?
Putting a mattress on a flat futon frame can be done. However, it might not stay up when you put it into a sofa position. One thing that can solve this is to increase the thickness and firmness of the latex foam you are using. In this way, it can easily stay upright when in the sofa position.
What is the difference between a futon mattress and a regular mattress?
Traditionally, futons are made to folded and stored, that is why futon mattresses are generally thinner than regular mattresses. Meanwhile, regular mattresses use springs to keep its shape. However, there are regular mattresses like latex and foam that does not need springs to keep its form.