Memory Foam

Memory Foam

The Pros and Cons of Memory Foam

Memory Foam mattresses have become a popular alternative to the standard innerspring mattress and box spring for consumers seeking greater contour and less bounce. If you're considering a memory foam mattress, there are some important things to know that will help you make a well-informed decision.

Origins

Swedish company Fagerdala World Foams introduced memory foam to consumers in 1991. They acquired the visco-elastic foam technology from NASA and further developed it for commercial use. The success of their Tempur-Pedic Swedish Mattress spawned a memory foam industry that today includes numerous mattress and pillow manufacturers.  

Performance and Construction

Also known as visco-elastic foam, memory foam is synthetic, petroleum-based polyurethane foam with a chemically-lowered melting point, which allows the foam to mold around a form and retain its impression or “memory”. Chemicals used in memory foam include Polyol (Polyether Gycol), TDI (Toluene diisocyanate), and Silicone Surfactants.

Memory Foam Pros:

  • Excellent contour
  • Pressure relief
  • Stability: eliminates motion transfer

Memory Foam Cons:

  • Lacks breathability
  • Known to sleep hot
  • Difficulty changing positions
  • Firmness dependent on environmental temperature
  • Chemical off-gassing and strong smells, particularly when new

The European Sleep Works Alternative

European Sleep Works does not use memory foam or polyurethane foam in our mattress designs. We do use a combination of natural materials including eco-certified cotton, wool, and natural latex. We also use eco-certified polypropylene.These materials offer dynamic support and contour without sacrificing breathability or stability. Each of our mattress styles offers a unique character and comes in 4 firmness options. Learn more about our mattress selection here