These are the most affordable non-toxic mattresses. Made from natural organic materials, natural latex, or low-VOC foam, these mattresses come in under $1000 which is a really good price these days.
Materials I consider to be non-toxic:
- Natural materials like cotton (ideally organic for cotton), wool, and coconut coir.
- PLA is a naturally derived polyester which sensitive folks tend to do very well with.
- Natural latex is low-VOC and does not contain flame retardants. It might be more mold-prone than other materials.
- Low-VOC brands of polyurethane (without flame retardants) can also be considered. Some of the most chemically sensitive folks end up going with polyurethane because natural materials are too odorous.
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1. The Futon Shop Foam-Free
The Futon Shop has a good variety of very affordable mattresses.
You can choose ones without latex or “soy foam” (which is polyurethane).
They no longer use boric acid, which it seemed like some were reacting to in the past.
I’ve heard glowing reviews and not good reviews from sensitive folks. One bad review is for the Vegan Tranquility 2 Spring Mattress. The reviewer said the cotton and PLA layer on top did not stay put. However, the same reviewer as well as others put The Futon Shop as their most tolerable mattress (for chemical sensitivities).
Their prices start at $575. (US only. They don’t ship to Canada).
Buy from The Futon Shop.
2. The Futon Shop Latex
Some of the most affordable natural latex options are also by The Futon Shop.
Many of their latex options are paired with wool. Some are paired only with coconut coir or with hemp and coconut coir. Others include PLA and cotton. There are lots of options.
The simple options start at $800 for a queen.
Buy through The Futon Shop.
3. Natural Latex Slabs
The most economical option is to buy a 3-inch piece of latex. For around $250 (plus tax and shipping), you can get 3″ natural latex from Amazon (queen). I find that 3 inches is comfortable to sleep on.
Amazon sells various thicknesses to choose from and you can double them up. 6 inches should feel like a regular latex mattress (like one without springs). If you double it up you may want to go with firm on the bottom and medium or soft as the top layer.
Buy on Amazon.
4. IKEA Polyurethane
I would consider IKEA polyurethane beds. They don’t use flame retardants in the foam and their polyurethane is lower in perceived VOCs than other brands.
They have simple mattresses that are just a polyurethane slab like the ÅGOTNES for $69. But for a little more you can add springs and reduce the amount of foam even more – the VADSÖ is $99. These are the simplest options, they have thicker options as well.
Despite being a budget option, IKEA mattresses do not use fiberglass as the fire barrier. Some of the mattresses contain modacrylic fiber wadding (which I’m fine with) and some do not.
IKEA mattresses in North America use an inherently fire-resistant barrier made of rayon/polyester batting. Flame retardant chemicals are only used for some stitch bonds, piping, and zippers.
I may use the aluminized tarps to sequester the offgassing, if needed.
Buy through your local IKEA.
5. Bio-based polyurethane
White Lotus makes a simple mattress based on their naturally derived polyurethane. This is another low offgassing polyurethane that some chemically sensitive folks really like. It also has a wool layer and cotton cover.
It’s $986 for a queen through their website.
Futons are more affordable than regular mattresses and often don’t use flame retardants. Look for organic cotton or wool filled. Avoid conventional (non-organic) cotton batting which still retains a lot of pesticide.
Look out for antimicrobial and even added pesticide treatments. A full article on non-toxic futons goes into more detail and has more selection.
i. The Futon Shop is an obvious option for very affordable futons that many sensitive folks do well with. Starting at about $300.
ii. Rawganique has 100% organic cotton futons as well as cotton and wool. The company focuses on reducing chemical processing as much as possible. Starting at $522.
iii. Zafu kapok fiber futons (pictured) are really cool. They don’t compact as much as cotton and wool batting. They have an organic cotton cover, with eco wool and kapok fiber. This brand came recommended by sensitive folks. $1,059 for a queen.
Please see the article on futons for more options.