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Bamboo Mattress: Definitions, Advantages, and Buyer’s Guide

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Written by: Alex Savy
Read 26 minLast updated on May 25, 2022

If you care about the environment or if you have a delicate immune system that leaves you vulnerable to illnesses, buying a mattress is not as simple for you as it is for the rest of the population. This article will explain that a bamboo mattress might just solve your problems, because it is environment-friendly and can protect you from bacteria, dust mites, and overheating.

A Quick Preview

Best Bamboo Memory Foam Mattress

Resort Bamboo Mattress by Cariloha
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Best for Hypoallergenic Features

LUCID 10 Inch Full Hybrid Mattress
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Best Bamboo Queen Mattress

Pillow-Top Hybrid by Easeland
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Best Bamboo King Mattress

King Hybrid Mattress by Signature Sleep
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What is a Bamboo Mattress?

A bamboo mattress is a mattress that has bamboo textiles or ash as part of its construction. It is not made of wood and is not hard, as many people may think. 

While scientists from many countries have been fiddling around with the conversion of bamboo to textile, the first widespread commercial strategies were invented by researchers from the University of Beijing in 2001. There are two typical manufacturing strategies.

  1. Manufacturers split the hard woody part of the bamboo plant from the fibers, spin the fibers into yarns, and weave the yarns into fabric.(1) In so doing, they make a textile that is even softer than most other textiles.
  2. Manufacturers create bamboo charcoal. They first dry the bamboo, then reduce it to charcoal in a kiln at very high temperatures, and then embed this powder into the fibers of other textiles from which fabrics, or in this case foam mattresses, can be made.(1)

As you will see in our bamboo mattress reviews below, some bamboo mattress brands use a bamboo cover manufactured via the fabric route, while others infuse bamboo charcoal into their foam mattresses.

Why Use Bamboo in Mattresses?

Bamboo has plenty of advantages over other textiles, and many of these benefits make it the ideal construction material for mattresses.

  • Bamboo has cooling and moisture-wicking characteristics. Since bamboo is naturally hollow, the fibers also have lots of tiny gaps. These gaps allow it to absorb and evaporate the moisture from your skin, much like the bamboo plant absorbs and evaporates the moisture in the air.(2) This means that you will sleep cooler and drier. In fact, one study that compared it with cotton found it to be better at Moisture absorption, drying, and cooling, characteristics for which cotton is usually valued.(3)
  • Bamboo fabric has a very soft feel. When the fibers are separated from the plant through a chemical process, it feels like cashmere. When the fibers are mechanically stripped from the wood, it feels like ramie material.(2) Therefore, mattresses that have bamboo covers are super gentle on the skin and would work even for people with sensitivities.
  • Bamboo is extremely plentiful. It grows everywhere except in extremely cold climates like northern Europe and Antarctica. Moreover, it is fast-growing. While a forest takes 60 years to recover from deforestation, a bamboo plantation can be harvested sustainably in a three to five-year cycle.(1) Now that manufacturers have discovered cheaper methods to make the textiles, bamboo mattress prices have plummeted because the raw materials are so abundant.
  • Bamboo is naturally organic and environment-friendly. It requires no pesticides and fertilizers and, because the roots remain in place after harvesting, it maintains good soil quality. It also requires very little water to grow and, when you're done with your mattress cover, bamboo is biodegradable, unlike many other artificial textiles that will still be hanging around the planet more than 1000 years from now.(2)
  • Bamboo does not require pesticides because it contains a natural antifungal and antibacterial agent called bamboo kun. ;A few years ago when the China Industrial Testing Centre tested a bamboo fabric by trying to contaminated with bacteria, it managed to destroy 99.8 percent of them, confirmed in a peer-reviewed study.(4) This is great for young children, the elderly, and those with compromised immune systems who need cleaner sleep surfaces than the rest of us do.
  • Charcoal is resistant to dust mites, those microscopic spiders that eat your skin cells, defecate inside your mattress, and are the culprits behind most bedtime allergies.(5)

How to Choose the Best Bamboo Mattress

We used specific criteria to pick the best bamboo mattresses, some of which are specific to bamboo mattresses, and others that apply to all mattresses.

  • A bamboo cover. We like mattresses with bamboo covers, as such a cover is the first defense to keep bacteria away from the foam in the mattress. Those covers that can be unzipped and removed are the best, since they are washable. They also feel nice and soft by touch for a comfortable sleeping surface.
  • Bamboo charcoal infusion. We like mattresses that are infused with bamboo charcoal, because it goes deep into the mattress to keep it free of potentially harmful organisms. The one potential downside is that manufacturers typically don't tell us how much charcoal exactly the mattress contains. Obviously, if it contains too little, its antibacterial effects will be reduced.(1)
  • Double protection. Because of the previous point, the ideal mattress is one with both a bamboo cover and bamboo charcoal infused foam for protection both around and inside the mattress, but quality mattresses of this kind are difficult to find. If this is important to you, one solution is to buy a charcoal-infused mattress and bamboo fabric separately from which you can make your own mattress cover.
  • Firmness. Research shows that the vast majority of people prefer a mattress that is medium or medium-firm on the firmness scale. This is the firmness level that best prevents and reduces back and other pain upon rising and while lying in bed.(6)(7) But if you require a very soft mattress or one of these best extra-firm mattresses here, you can try the Snuggle-Pedic mattress on our list and customize it. The same holds if you have liked one of the best mattresses for heavy people here.
  • Construction materials. At this stage, it seems as if foam is the only material that scientists have managed to fill with bamboo charcoal, as such latex mattresses seem not to be available. It also literally is not possible to inject bamboo charcoal into air or spring mattresses. Luckily, memory foam or hybrid innerspring-memory foam mattresses (such as the best hybrid mattresses here) are popular and supported by research as a good way to reduce contact pressure and to improve sleep quality.(8) Otherwise you can again buy a mattress of your own choice and cover it with a bamboo cover.
  • Hypoallergenic features. Like latex, bamboo is naturally hypoallergenic, so these mattresses have an edge over ones that do not include bamboo. The only other thing to ensure is that the foam in the mattress is CertiPUR-US certified, which indicates that they contain no formaldehyde, harmful phthalates, and heavy metals like Mercury and lead. Those on our list are all so certified.
  • Cooling features. Because of the tiny gaps throughout bamboo fabric, mattresses with bamboo covers automatically let through air and, if you sweat on them, they will absorb it and allow it to evaporate. Foam is, unfortunately, not the coolest sleeping surface, which is why our favorites below have gel infused into their foam to keep them cooler.

A quick note: not all mattresses that use bamboo can guarantee optimal conditions for restful sleep. Many of them use only a small quantity of bamboo that might not have a substantial effect. Additionally, sleep quality would depend not only on the bamboo component but also on the mattress’s construction and material quality. For example, some manufacturers can use cheap foams with bamboo covers as a marketing trick to follow the bamboo trend and sell more mattresses.

Detailed Bamboo Mattress Reviews

Best Bamboo Memory Foam Mattress — Resort Bamboo Mattress by Cariloha

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Highlights

  • zoned comfort foam for precise, targeted support;
  • air channels in the base layer for enhanced breathability and cooler sleep;
  • reinforced edges to offer a larger sleeping surface.

What makes this model one of the best bamboo mattresses is its ability to combine the comfort of memory foam with cool sleep. The Resort mattress uses multiple cooling components, one of which is bamboo, of course. The bamboo-infused layer works to eliminate moisture build-up and bacteria. That’s probably why I didn’t experience any night sweats when sleeping on my side on the Resort mattress (which is a rare occasion for me).

It’s also worth mentioning that this model has a layer of gel-infused memory foam. While it contributes to the overall cooling, this layer has a bit more to offer. The Resort incorporates zoned support, so this layer responds differently to various areas of the body. The mattress hugs what needs to be hugged and fills in the curves to provide support where it’s required. This helps sleepers achieve neutral spinal alignment. I felt the Resort’s zoned support working during the first night, as my back experienced zero tension for the first time in weeks.

I also appreciate the cover of the Resort mattress. First of all, it’s made using bamboo viscose. Not only is it super soft to the touch but also incredibly breathable. This can help with thermoregulation, as breathable fabrics effectively wick the excess moisture away. Additionally, the Resort’s cover is zippered. This means sleepers can remove it for easier maintenance (and keep the allergens at bay).

Best for Hypoallergenic Features — LUCID 10 Inch Full Hybrid Mattress

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Highlights

  • Bamboo charcoal infused Foam to prevent dust mites and bacteria.
  • Medium firmness for side and back sleepers.
  • Easy setup and long sleep trial.

The foam layers are infused with bamboo charcoal which provides the typical antibacterial and moisture wicking effects of bamboo, but additionally also combats dust mites, the single largest cause of allergies indoors. Research shows that charcoal can kill 100 percent of all dust mites.(5) This ensures that this mattress is perfect for allergy sufferers, for children, and for elderly people who might be more sensitive to the critters that strong, healthy bodies can resist.

Reviewers rate it firmness as medium, with the inner springs providing some bounds and edge support, the foam layers providing strong support for back sleepers, and the memory foam layers providing some good body contouring for side sleepers. Since studies rate a firmness level of medium to be the healthiest for most typical sleepers, this mattress seems to have gotten it right.(7)

It is shipped in a box, compressed and rolled for easy setup and includes a 100-night sleep trial during which you receive a full refund if you are unhappy.

Unlike the Customize Bed mattress described above, this mattress is aimed purely at home use, with thickness versions of 10 and 12 inches and sizes that range from twin to king.

Best Bamboo Queen Mattress — Pillow-Top Hybrid by Easeland

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Highlights

  • independent coils to ensure targeted support and reduced motion transfer;
  • thick pillow-top for added cushioning, great for sleepers with sharp pressure points;
  • breathable bamboo fabric to help sleepers maintain a comfortable temperature during the night.

What I love about this Queen bamboo mattress is how well-balanced it feels. The Easeland combines responsive coils with slow-moving foam, making this mattress right in the middle between pressure relief and bouncy support. It can be an excellent solution for people who want the best bamboo mattress that’s neither too hugging nor too responsive.

Another cool thing about this Queen bamboo mattress is the edge support. Because the Easeland uses sturdy, resilient coils, the mattress can deliver uniform support across the surface. This means this Queen mattress may offer a bit more sleeping space without the need to upgrade to a larger size. It’s a win-win scenario, especially for bedrooms that cannot accommodate bigger beds.

Finally, I’m sure sleepers will appreciate the pillow-top design of this mattress. The Easeland looks and feels luxurious, offering extra cushioning for tender joints and sharp pressure points (or simply increased comfort). At the same time, this model is more reasonably priced than many pillow-top competitors on the market. Needless to say, the Easeland offers affordable luxury, all wrapped in a quality, soft bamboo cover.

Best Bamboo King Mattress — King Hybrid Mattress by Signature Sleep

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Highlights:

  • medium firmness level to accommodate a wider range of sleepers;
  • wrapped coils for adaptive support and enhanced breathability;
  • zoned foam pillow-top to achieve optimal weight distribution and pinpoint pressure relief.

Looking for a King bamboo mattress that could deliver both luxurious comfort and plenty of legroom? Then this hybrid model by Signature Sleep might be your perfect match! What makes this mattress one of the most comfortable models on the market is its multi-layered design. The Signature Sleep combines adaptive coils with multiple foam layers. Foam is responsible for pressure relief, and coils work to help with proper alignment. As a result, this mattress made me feel completely tension-free after the first night.

It’s also worth mentioning that this King mattress has a soft bamboo cover. It’s silky smooth to the touch and super gentle on skin (I didn’t even want to put the bedsheets on top). Additionally, the bamboo fabric is breathable and moisture-wicking, making the Signature Sleep mattress an excellent option for hot sleepers. 

Readers should also know that this is a medium model. It offers enough of a hug without allowing the spine to fall into misalignment. The Signature Sleep mattress will be ideal for people who want something not too firm, not too plushy. The top foam layers may require a short break-in period, especially if you’re not very heavy, but this mattress is worth the wait.

F.A.Q.

How Do I Know that My Mattress Contains Real Bamboo?

Good question, especially since one of the chemical extraction techniques of bamboo fibers basically yields rayon.

Luckily, the US Federal Trade Commission prohibits manufacturers from labeling rayon or any other fabric as bamboo, so if you see a bamboo label, that is exactly what it is.(9)

If the label says something like "rayon made from bamboo", then it contains potentially harmful chemicals and it is not pure bamboo.

Why are Most of the Best Bamboo Mattresses from China?

Because it is in China where researchers first perfected the manufacturing of bamboo textiles.

The bamboo mattress brands on our list are Chinese, but they are made in the USA and their customer service personnel are also here.

Is a Bamboo Mattress More Expensive Than Others?

Not anymore. Bamboo mattresses are becoming increasingly cheap to make because bamboo is abundant in nature and because the manufacturing techniques are becoming better understood and widely implemented. 

The bamboo mattress prices for those on our list are actually quite low because the mattresses are otherwise fairly straightforward foam or hybrid models.

Where are Bamboo Mattresses Best Used?

They are perfect for any room and bed in your house, but those with removable bamboo covers have the extra advantage of being safely usable in areas that are not perfectly clean, such as a campsite, a daybed on your patio, or a sleep-out on the grass in your back garden when it's hot. The cover will protect the mattress from collecting live organisms like bacteria, and if the cover gets dirty, simply remove and wash it.

Where Can I Buy a Bamboo Mattress?

Either from the manufacturer's own website, from Amazon, or from any retailer where you see them advertised. Wherever you decide to buy, remember to ask whether perks like sleep trials and warranties apply. They do apply when you buy our favorites from the links above.

Conclusion


Between cooling and moisture-wicking features, antibacterial properties, and the freedom from harmful chemicals, a bamboo mattress is a pretty good idea. That's why our favorite bamboo mattress brand is the Resort Bamboo Mattress by Cariloha. It has all these features while being extremely customizable and even usable outdoors.

If you have ever slept on a mattress that included bamboo and you think our bamboo mattress reviews omitted something that you think is important, let us know in the comments below.

References:

  1. Lopamudra Nayak and Siba Prasad Mishra (2016). Prospect of bamboo as a renewable textile fiber, historical overview, labeling, controversies and regulation. Fashion and Textiles. Retrieved from: https://link.springer.com/article/10.1186/s40691-015-0054-5
  2. NC State University Wilson College of Textiles (2009). SUSTAINABLE TEXTILES: THE ROLE OF BAMBOO AND A COMPARISON OF BAMBOO TEXTILE PROPERTIES-PART 1. Retrieved from: https://ojs.cnr.ncsu.edu/index.php/JTATM/article/view/651/458
  3. CHEN Zhi-hua (2010). Moisture absorption and liberation and wicking property of bamboo/cotton fabric. Retrieved from: https://en.cnki.com.cn/Article_en/CJFDTotal-TJFZ201002007.htm
  4. A. Gericke et al. (2011). A Comparative Study of Regenerated Bamboo, Cotton and Viscose Rayon Fabrics, Part 2. Retrieved from: https://www.ajol.info/index.php/jfecs/article/view/69727
  5. Hae-Seon Nam et al. (October 24, 2012). Effect of Activated Charcoal Fibers on the Survival of the House Dust Mite, Dermatophagoides pteronyssinus: A Pilot Study. Retrieved from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3671713/
  6. Ahmed Radwan et al. (December 2015). Effect of Different Mattress Designs on Promoting Sleep Quality, Pain Reduction, and Spinal Alignment in Adults With or Without Back Pain; Systematic Review of Controlled Trials. Sleep Health. Retrieved from: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S2352721815001400
  7. Sean O. Hogan et al. (2011). Choosing a Mattress: Using Actigraphy and Diary Reports to Identify a Mattress That Provides Best Sleep. Retrieved from: https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2015071
  8. Lorenzo Tonetti et al. (March 30, 2011). Relationship Between Mattress Technological Features and Sleep Quality: An Actigraphic Study of Healthy Participants. Biological Rhythm Research. Retrieved from: https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/09291016.2010.528633
  9. Steffen Dagmar et al. (2013). Bamboo: A holistic approach to a renewable fibre for textile design. Retrieved from: https://d1wqtxts1xzle7.cloudfront.net/31418541/EAD2013_Steffen_et_al.pdf?1371642355=&response-content-disposition=inline%3B+filename%3DBamboo_A_Holistic_Approach_to_a_Renewabl.pdf&Expires=1626449843&Signature=BasN4cY1EMpMc0H8OTiQBUgwX0x8KziIDvKWseI4Uw9R6vV~wsJUkrD4VrLvBlt-hAzjOzeNh0U5qD5JzHY6CTGFepB6q6egPkm3ja7QDoZGrJd7vOIj0zBKo6mpZVZ3ahONowUmm2BzkU1YNV9YkOr~IOk-Gg1TK8UdlW6z4EWGtb1wiIyKJoR8~yzep6ho8M-EwP9UYq0DXm34rGIumwVaD7dDCAQ79z5zxwC-qu4Sr6WTfE9ZaDUMMJAKA3Wom-KLZjfk-a6ewZUnVNn24i6QOxNviAakDuwsHK2GOHytfrLcTqtpAfgchwfcU1DFfe2L2QKTv9c1jvMnmRX5uw__&Key-Pair-Id=APKAJLOHF5GGSLRBV4ZA

Our research

27

Mattresses Considered

112

Hours of Research

2

Sleep Experts Consulted

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2 comments

  1. I got a bambo bed but I am not satisfied with it because if I sleep on it the next morning I can barely walk why is that I bought the bed so about a year a go my weight is 88 to 90 kg so I believe it’s not my weight and if I lay on the bed it completely dip in why please let me know please and thank you

    1. Hi Riaan,
      Sounds like your bamboo mattress is too soft for you. It allows your body to sink in too much and causes your back to curve, which is why you can barely walk the next morning.
      There are a few things you can do to improve the situation. Ideally, you should get a new mattress, something a bit firmer that could support your body and keep your spine properly aligned.
      Don’t forget to factor in your favorite sleeping style. If you are a stomach sleeper, you need a firm mattress. If you sleep on your back, a medium-firm model should suffice. And if you are a side sleeper, you need a soft mattress. But given that your current bamboo mattress is already rather plush, you can add a firm topper to achieve improved support when sleeping on one side.
      You can also try placing your mattress on a solid foundation (that is, if you are currently using a box spring or a slatted bed frame). A solid foundation can deliver firm support and might make your mattress feel slightly stiffer. You can try adding a layer of plywood under your mattress or even place it on the floor (as a temporary solution, of course).
      If you bought your mattress only a year ago and it used to be more comfortable, you might want to contact the mattress company. The issue might be with the mattress’s materials that have lost their supportive properties, and the warranty should cover that. Check if your mattress has any indentations, sags, or lumps, and contact the company you’ve purchased it from.
      Hope this helps!

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