The Non-Toxic Mattress We Love For The Best Sleep Ever
My parents’ wedding gift to us was a king-size, pillow-top mattress and box springs from Sam’s. We were just two kids, and we might as well have been buying a yacht instead of an $800 bed. The cost of that bed was more than half of what we brought home in a month back then, and we were so grateful to my parents for their generous gift.
Six years later, that bed was worn out. There were two body-shaped dips on either side where we slept and one big hump in the middle that separated us. (No, we’re not the cuddling type when it’s time to get some shut-eye.)
The Hubs was a full-time student at college and once again, buying a bed might as well have been a small island. We refused to go into debt just to get a good night’s sleep, so we did the next best thing and bought a memory foam topper to hopefully extend the life of our bed.
You can read the rest of the how-we-got-to-the-point-of-no-return-with-the-bed saga here.
Our Complaints Were:
- Whatever part of my lower body touched the bed went numb after 15-20 minutes in one position. My hips, sacrum, and tail bone went numb all through the night, forcing me to change positions to get comfortable again.
- I woke up daily with lower back pain and stiffness.
- The Hubs complained daily of lower back and neck pain.
- The Hubs snored almost nightly — not heavily or super loud, but loud enough to wake me up several times each night.
- Partner disturbance. We were always feeling each other move, which was a lot because we were always uncomfortable.
Ordering Our Essentia Bed
In my IntelliBed review, I told how I hung up the phone with IntelliBed and immediately called Essentia to order one of their beds. I had our choices narrowed down to two beds: the Energie Opus and the Classic8. I didn’t know if we needed a soft or firm bed, so I was happy that my salesperson knew exactly what to ask to help me make that decision.
The Hubs is a side sleeper, and I’m a back sleeper. We needed a bed that could perform for both of us: soft enough for him to sleep on his side and firm enough to support my lower back and hips. With the help of our saleslady, we determined that the Classic8 would be our best option. Since I was already ordering a bed, I thought I might as well order a couple of new pillows for us too. (And a dog bed for our sweet Boston terrier Betsy. 😉 )
After a quick and painless ordering process, all we could do was wait for our bed to arrive. And since we were stuck sleeping on the Intellibed until it did, let’s just say it couldn’t come soon enough!
Thankfully, our Classic8 arrived less than two weeks later. Unlike most mattresses, the Essentia beds are rolled tightly into (recycled!) rectangular boxes, and there was no delivery company to set the mattress up for us like with IntelliBed. The box was so heavy that I couldn’t even push it inside my door from the porch by myself, so it sat outside until The Hubs got home.
Getting the mattress inside, unpacked, and on the box springs was a cumbersome process, but didn’t take more than 15 minutes. This mattress is heavy and DENSE! As soon as the box was opened and the bed was on the box springs, it immediately began taking shape.
The company said it would take a few hours for the mattress to fill out and take shape, but I would say that it was fully shaped within minutes.
The Essentia Experience
Initially, my favorite part of our new bed was the unbleached, organic cotton mattress cover! It is literally one of the softest things I’ve ever felt in my life, and I wish we could just sleep on it and not a sheet! Essentia calls this their Zebrano cover — it’s an uber soft, breathable fabric that’s also removable for easy washing.
I put my nose on the bed right out of the box, and there was zero smell. It didn’t smell like a factory or a cleaner or a box or anything. No smell at all. We’ve tested out mattresses at furniture stores in the past, and my nose would become stuffy while laying on the beds. Not so with Essentia.
The best way I can describe our Essentia Classic8 is firm and soft at the same time. It provides all the hip and back support that I need, and my hips aren’t going numb anymore. The Hubs says it’s pretty darn comfortable too, and although he hasn’t noticed, I can say that his snoring has decreased significantly!
One of our biggest complaints about our original mattress and the IntelliBed was the partner disturbance. Although the Classic8 has not completely eliminated this, it has improved it by leaps and bounds. With the Intellibed, I actually felt like I was bouncing when David rolled over; and that feeling has disappeared. We do feel slight movement when the other one moves, but I think we’re actually feeling the covers shifting more than the bed itself.
Although the Essentia bed is memory foam, it doesn’t sleep hot like typical memory foam beds, such as the TempurPedic. We’ve experienced a TempurPedic bed before, and boy, did we get HOT! The Essentia bed is not hot at all. Nor is it cold. Like Goldilocks in Baby Bear’s bed, our Essentia bed is just right.
Finally, I think it’s safe to say that Betsy absolutely loves her medium-size Kingston Pet Bed! If I had it to do over again, I would order her the small bed; the medium one is really large (she weighs 17 pounds) and she curls up in one corner of it. Just like Dad, Betsy was a snoring pup before she started sleeping on her Essentia pet bed, and now her snoring is gone too! The Kingston Pet Bed comes with a cover that is similar to our bed; the only difference is the part she lays on. Rather than being quilted cotton like ours, it’s more of a fleece-y texture. It zips off easily for washing and spot-cleaning.
Do a Google search for non-toxic mattresses, and you won’t find yourself short on options. So how did we choose Essentia out of all the choices?
Well, first, the decision to purchase a new mattress was not a sudden one. It’s not like our poor sleep quality crept up on us or anything. It was in the back of our minds that we needed a new bed for a long time.
I spent hours and hours searching for The One for us. I can’t even tell you how many websites I poured over, how many reviews I read, and how many companies I called. And I didn’t do all this in a weekend either. It took me about a year to educate myself so I would know what to look for and what questions to ask. I had to learn a lot about the toxicity of regular mattresses so I would know how to avoid potential toxicity in a greener bed.
The two things that stuck out to me about Essentia above all other companies was
- that they were priced neither too high nor too low
- that they not only disclose what isn’t in their beds — they disclose what IS in them.
From their website:
Hevea Milk: Milky white “sap” of the Rubber tree, collected much like Maple tree sap. Our hevea milk is sourced from Indonesia, collected from Rubber Plantations where acceptable working conditions are maintained and there is no practice of child labor. This milk is processed to make our natural memory foam and Dunlop Latex Foam.
Dunlop Latex: A rubbery foam made from Hevea Milk (rubber tree sap) which is known for its durability, support qualities and purity. We use natural Dunlop latex foam, the finest natural latex foam available.
Organic Essential Oils: A natural and healthy alternative to man-made oils or petroleum, we use certified organic essential oils. Grapefruit seed, cone flower essence and jasmine essence all help us achieve proper consistency in our natural memory foam while providing soothing and rejuvenating properties to the body and spirit.
Natural Plant Extracts: As a substitution to harsh toxic chemicals used in conventional memory foam, plant extracts such as hydrolyzed corn help us achieve the proper consistency for our natural memory foam.
Certified Organic Cotton: Every Essentia mattress is wrapped in 100% GOTS (Global Organic Textile Standard) certified unbleached organic cotton.
What does organic mean? Grown without chemicals, synthetic fertilizers or pesticides. Organic helps retain the health of our planet and its people by:
- providing safe work environments for cotton field workers, eliminating the use of damaging synthetic pesticides ensuring soil fertility is maintained and improved.
- 25% of the world’s chemical pesticides are used to grow cotton when only 3% of the world’s farmland grows cotton. Choosing organic cotton makes a huge difference.
Animal Free: Our mattresses are Vegan, containing no animal products.
I literally sleep better at night because this company has gone to such great lengths to produce a bed that is both good for me and good for the earth, right down to the 99% post-consumer recycled boxes they use to ship each mattress. Just check out all the third-party testing and certification they go through.
Would I buy our Essentia bed again? Absolutely I would. We’ve been sleeping on it for a little more than three months, and we’re happily sleeping more comfortably and more deeply each night. I don’t wake up with pain in my hips and lower back like I used to, and I’m not stiff at all. The Hubs is snoring so much less than before, and he moves a lot less throughout the night. He is also not complaining about aches and pains each day. Our next goal is to buy twin-size Essentia beds for the peeps.