What Type of Foundation Is Best for Memory Foam and Latex Mattresses?
I've been in the mattress industry over a decade and the #1 question I hear from people is, "What type of foundation or support base should I use with my memory foam or latex mattress?
As most of you know, a foundation is the support base or mechanism that sits underneath a mattress. Both memory foam and latex mattresses require a solid, uniform foundation to work properly. If you currently have an older box spring foundation, definitely read on.
The Two Types of Foundations
Two Basic Types of Mattress Foundations on the Market
There are two basic types of mattress foundations in the mattress world today: box springs and foundations.
- Box springs are, for the most part, a combination of wood and steel springs that act like shock absorbers for a traditional innerspring mattress.
- Foundations are a more solid structure, for use with memory foam or latex mattresses, and are typically a solid wood top or wood slatted system with a cover.
Now, older box springs, typically ones that are over 10 years old, have too much give with their spring systems, and are not a good support base for memory foam mattresses. If you have an existing box spring, it is less than 10 years old and still in good shape, test it by pushing against the springs in several spots. Make sure the entire box spring has the same consistency in feel. If it’s rigid and firm, with an inch or less of give, then it should be OK to use with a memory foam mattress or latex mattress. If not, then you’re going to have to purchase a mattress foundation. It's perfect for memory foam and latex mattresses. I've tested it myself. This foundation comes in all sizes.
Typical foundations on the market today are either steel frame and steel frame/wood slat combinations or come with a nice zippered cover, and a solid, wood top or even tacked cardboard. They are ideal for memory foam or latex mattresses, because they provide a solid, uniform bottom for the foam cores. The less give you have, the better.
. Assembled height is about ten inches off the floor, so with mattress it sits at a nice height off of floor. I had a 10-inch mattress on mine. Not too low and not too high. Easy to get in and out. This wood slat foundation is super sturdy at a great price
Roll on Wood Slat Foundation
Wood Slat Mattress Foundations
Wood slat foundations work well too, as long as the slats are close enough together. We like to see the slats no more than 3” apart or less, preferably 2” apart. You’ll need to measure or make sure with a retailer that the slats are close enough together. Otherwise, you’ll need to put a ½” to ¾” cut plywood or pressboard over the slats to create that solid, uniform bottom (these boards will typically be in two cuts that you’ll butt together, the bigger the mattress you have).
Foldable Metal Foundations
I recently tested the . The platform worked beautifully with both types. It unfolds easily and folds right back up in seconds to store. The metal support strands are close enough together to provide that much needed congruous support. This foundation is great for guest beds that need to be put away after use but would also work well for a main mattress with long term use. I highly recommend this platform foundation. It comes in a surprisingly small box, because it is collapsable. It is lightweight which makes it easy to move (as you'll see in the video at right) so is great for storage. Pragma bed platform with both a memory foam and a latex mattress
Pragma Bed Mattress Foundation
Memory Foam on the Floor?
I get this question a lot: Is it ok to put a memory foam mattress directly on the floor? The simple answer is yes. Why? Because these mattresses needs a solid, uniform bottom and a floor provides that. The floor functions like a foundation. Now, this will be a very low profile bed, because you don't have the elevation that a foundation and frame would give you. Getting out of bed will be a bit difficult. However, many people do this, particularly folks who are just starting out and trying to save some money.
Make sure to check your mattress' warranty to determine whether it is affected/voided by not using a traditional foundation. This is sometimes the case.
Adjustable Base ShipShape Assembly Video
Which adjustable base would I recommend? By far, the ones manufactured by Leggett and Platt. They are durable, last a long time, are backed by a good warranty, and are built with quality components and craftsmanship. And, if my word isn't enough for you, the leading memory foam mattress company (which I dare not name because of their trademark restrictions, just think of the glass of wine test on the mattress) uses these adjustable bases almost exclusively with their models. Plus, I own one (the ShipShape adjustable base), and in four years I haven't had one problem with it, and I've moved twice in that time.
What amazed me the most when I received mine (and during my moves), was how easy it was to assemble and disassemble. They were really thinking when they had the consumer in mind in this area. Check out the video at right.