The Mattress Dilemma: Why Quality and Sustainability Should Go Hand in Hand

The Mattress Dilemma: Why Quality and Sustainability Should Go Hand in Hand

Are you tired of feeling like you have to choose between comfort and sustainability when it comes to mattresses? Well, now you don’t have to. Keep reading to learn more about how you really can ‘have it all’; making a positive impact on the planet while enjoying a good night’s rest – every single night. 

The rise of sustainable living

Many of us are trying to become a little more environmentally friendly, aren’t we? And the great thing is that even small changes can have a big difference. Perhaps you’re using public transport to get to work, instead of driving. Maybe you’re recycling more packaging, or getting into the habit of turning off lights when you don’t need them. Whatever you’re doing, it all helps. 

The problem, however, is that there are a number of areas where we can feel caught between protecting our planet, and really enjoying ourselves. A prime example is flying. We all know that air travel is bad for the environment. Yet we want to see the world. Immerse ourselves in other cultures. Relax on the beach in warmer, sunnier climates. We want to enjoy the time we have on this planet. 

And it can be the same sort of situation with sleep. 

We all want to get a good night’s sleep. After all, sleep is what keeps us going. We feel better when we’ve had a good rest, and it helps us both physically and emotionally. But many mattresses deemed to be the most comfortable and supportive aren’t always the best for the environment. 

The problem with (some) mattresses

The two biggest concerns regarding mattress sustainability today come from manufacturing and end-of-life processes. The current ‘standard’ for both doesn’t always align with this growing desire to live ‘greener’ lifestyles and take measures to ensure we’re leaving the planet better than we found it. 

In terms of manufacturing, making new mattresses can be a very energy-intensive process, consuming huge amounts of non-renewable resources. Even more worryingly, the development of some types of mattresses relies heavily upon the use of chemical compounds that can have devastating effects on the surrounding natural environment. 

In terms of disposal, it’s reported that a whopping three-quarters of all discarded mattresses in the UK end up in landfill. Not only is this directly contributing towards the growing waste problem, but it’s also allowing potentially dangerous substances to leak into our environment. TCPP, for example, which is often used as a flame retardant for mattresses, is making its way into our water sources. Experts believe that TCPP can affect immune responses, and even change how humans develop. 

So what comes first? How do you choose between your own comfort, and the protection of the world around us? Well, the good news is you don’t have to. The great ‘mattress’ dilemma is fast becoming a thing of the past, thanks to a new wave of sustainable mattresses. When quality and sustainability go hand-in-hand, you’ll never have to choose between comfort and commitment. 

What is a sustainable mattress?

A sustainable mattress is one which has less of an impact on the environment, across every stage of its lifecycle. From materials selection right the way through to end of life, a sustainable mattress allows everyone to enjoy high-quality sleep, without compromising on their values and beliefs. 

What a sustainable mattress isn’t is something that solves all the world’s climate problems. 

Swapping to a different mattress isn’t going to eradicate the climate crisis. No matter what type of mattress you choose, there’s always going to be energy associated with the manufacture, delivery, and disposal of such a large, bulky item. We can’t get rid of that entirely. But by making smart choices, we can ensure that our mattresses utilise as few non-renewable resources – and release as few toxins into the environment – as possible. This enables us to do our part to protect our planet, even while we sleep. Now, that’s something that’s worth getting excited about, isn’t it?

What to look for in an eco-friendly mattress

Considering investing in a ‘green’ mattress? Great! If you aren’t quite sure where to get started, or you don’t quite know what to look for, here are the three golden factors to take into account:

  1. Quality

In general, it’s recommended that you purchase a new mattress once every 6-8 years. Yet reports show that, here in the UK, nearly a quarter of us dump our mattresses within the first 4 years. Why? Most of the time, it’s because we’re buying cheap, poor-quality, badly-made products. Instead, we should be looking for higher-quality mattresses which are designed to last. When mattresses last longer, there are fewer being sent to landfill, and a slower, more sustainable rate of manufacture. 

  1. Materials

Materials matter. One of the most important elements to look for in a sustainable mattress is TCPP-free foam which doesn’t include the dangerous substance tris(chloropropyl) phosphate. You might also want to go one further, exploring mattresses made from 100% recycled materials, or water-resistant fabrics that help elongate the life of the mattress. Foam mattresses are often a good choice, as waste from the manufacturing process can be used for other purposes, like carpet backing. 

  1. Miles

Quite simply, the fewer ‘sleep miles’, the better. Why purchase a mattress produced halfway around the world – and shipped to the UK using a huge amount of fuel – when you could buy one made right here? Made in Britain is the best place to find companies that produce their products on British soil. When your mattress has less distance to travel between the factory, the warehouse, and your home, you can significantly lower the carbon footprint of your purchase.

3 top tips for overcoming the mattress dilemma

Sustainability doesn’t have to be costly

According to the National Bed Federation, the average person is prepared to pay 10% more for an environment-friendly mattress. But at Memory Foam Warehouse, we don’t think that’s necessary. 

Our innovative Ecofoam range perfectly balances comfort, quality, sustainability, and affordability, bringing you the best possible night’s sleep while helping you maintain a clear conscience. 

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