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An organic mattress minimizes chemicals that could impact health, often avoiding flame retardants. Certain manufacturers prioritize chemical-free materials for environmentally friendly options, which we explore in our review of green choices.

All information presented is purely research-based and correct at the time of publication.

Medical News Today has tested some of the products below. Reviewers may have received some products from the manufacturers for free, which does not influence their review. All opinions are the reviewers’ own.

The following table compares all of the mattresses in this article:

PriceMaterialWarrantySleep trial
Avocado$1,299hybrid25-year warranty1 year
Nectar$699memory foamforever warranty1 year
DreamCloud$899hybridlifetime warranty365 nights
Saatva$2,195hybridlifetime warranty365 nights
Awara$2,298hybridforever warranty365 nights
Tuft & Needle$995memory foam10-year warranty100 nights
PlushBeds$2,949latex25-year warranty100 nights
Birch by Helix$2,123.80hybrid25-year warranty100 nights
Zoma$1,149all-foam10-year warranty100 nights
My Green Mattress$1,699hybrid20-year warranty365 nights

Medical News Today chooses mattresses, sheets, pillows, and other bedding that meet the following criteria:

  • Certifications: MNT chooses products with CertiPUR-US certification or other guarantees that products contain minimal pollutants and are free from heavy metals and VOCs.
  • Size: MNT chooses products that are available in various sizes.
  • Materials: MNT selects products made from different materials, such as memory foam and latex, to suit a range of preferences and needs.
  • Budget: MNT features products suitable for a range of budgets.
  • Firmness: When possible, MNT selects mattresses available in a range of firmness options.
  • Sleep trials: MNT features products that come with sleep trials.
  • Shipping: MNT includes shipping information, such as cost and delivery locations.
  • Warranties and returns policies: MNT selects products with warranties and clear returns policies.

Medical News Todayfollows a strict product selection and vetting process. Learn more here.

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Nontoxic mattresses will always have third-party certifications to verify the manufacturer’s claims.

The certifications that the mattresses in this article have include:

CertificationWhat it means
Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS)available to products meeting the following criteria:

• contains at least 70% organic fibers
• uses sustainable environmental and social practices
• uses those practices in all manufacturing stages
• undergoes third-party testing by GOTS
Global Organic Latex Standard (GOLS)available to products meeting the following criteria:

• uses latex or rubber from organic plantations
• does not exceed permissible limits for harmful substances
• does not exceed permissible limits for emissions
• does not exceed permissible polymer and filler percentages
Greenguard Goldavailable to products that meet the following criteria:

• has low volatile organic compounds (VOCs)
• undergoes third-party testing by UL Solutions
OEKO-TEX Standard 100available to products meeting the following criteria:

• free from per- and poly-fluoroalkyl substances (PFAS)
• undergoes third-party testing by OEKO-TEX
CertiPUR-USavailable to foam products meeting the following criteria:

• free from formaldehyde
• free from ozone depleters
• free from phthalates
• free from mercury, lead, and other heavy metals
• has low VOCs
• undergoes third-party testing by CertiPUR-US
eco-INSTITUTavailable to products meeting the following criteria:

• testing low in emissions
• free from heavy metals, pesticides, and halogenorganic compounds

Nontoxic mattresses contain either no or limited amounts of potentially harmful chemicals. Manufacturers use some of these chemicals in foam mattresses to prevent them from catching fire.

What makes a mattress toxic?

Mattress foam forms due to a chemical reaction between three compounds: polyols, carbon-based blowing agents, and toluene diisocyanate.

According to the American Chemistry Council, manufacturers treat all products that create chemicals to make them safe before selling to consumers.

The Environmental Protection Agency also states that manufacturers make these products safe and nontoxic before they reach the consumer.

Another area of concern with foam mattresses is VOCs. These can quickly become gases. Many home products, such as hobby supplies and furnishings, contain VOCs.

Some potential side effects of VOC exposure include:

  • headaches
  • dizziness
  • memory problems
  • irritation of the eyes and respiratory tract
  • vision-related conditions

Some side effects of long-term exposure include:

  • nausea
  • loss of coordination
  • fatigue
  • kidney, liver, and central nervous system damage
  • an increased cancer risk

In a 2019 study, researchers found what they described as “concerning” levels of VOC exposure from mattresses for infants and small children during simulated sleep.

Despite the elevated levels, researchers found no evidence of adverse effects from the exposure.

People who wish to avoid exposure to harmful chemicals should look for certified nontoxic mattresses.

A person can look for certifications such as GOTS and GOLS.

The GOTS certification indicates that the textile is at least 95% organic and does not contain chemical flame retardants or polyurethane, which some manufacturers use in foam mattresses. GOLS certification indicates that at least 95% of the material is organic latex.

A person can also look for these hallmarks when mattress shopping:

  • CertiPUR-US: This certification indicates that a polyurethane mattress does not contain certain chemicals and flame retardants.
  • Organic Content Standard 100: This certification recognizes the percentage of material that is organic but ignores added chemicals, such as flame retardants.
  • Greenguard: This certifies that emissions from the mattress are under a certain level.

That said, people may opt for mattresses that is GOTS, GOLS, CertiPUR-US, OEKO-TEX, and Greenguard Gold certified, indicating that they are low in toxicity.


When choosing a nontoxic mattress, considering the materials is key. Many mattresses contain organic latex or natural foam. Some contain cotton and wool.

People may want to avoid synthetic materials, such as synthetic latex or polyester.


A person’s preference depends on various factors, such as sleeping position, body weight, bed sharing, and chronic pain issues.

Here are a few things people may want to consider:

There are several options to remove an old mattress in an eco-friendly way.

Some companies may remove a person’s old mattress when delivering a new one. People may wish only to choose this option if the company states it will donate or recycle the old mattress.

If a person prefers to donate or recycle their mattress themselves, several charitable organizations may be suitable:

  • Furniture Bank Association of America: This organization will take any mattresses that are twin–queen in size. People can request a pickup or drop-off via an appointment on the organization’s website.
  • Mattress Recycling Council: This organization provides residents of California, Connecticut, and Rhode Island with drop-off locations, recycling locations, and mattress collection drives. It states that it will soon be offering the same services to residents of Oregon.
  • Bye Bye Mattress: This website is a directory of the United States and Canada recycling centers. People need to contact each center to arrange a pickup or drop-off time.

Organizations that intend to resell or donate a mattress will only accept ones that people have gently used. Mattresses with stains, breakages, and any other damage are more suitable for recycling.

Local organizations may accept mattresses as well. However, some places may not accept anything they cannot easily sanitize or will not accept furniture and accessories that are too large to store.

Below, we answer some common questions about these mattresses.

Yes. These mattresses contain materials grown organically.

People and companies sometimes use the terms “nontoxic” and “organic” interchangeably, but they mean slightly different things.

An organic mattress contains materials grown organically, but manufacturers may use chemicals during production. A nontoxic mattress is not treated with chemicals, but its materials may not be organic.

Many nontoxic mattresses also contain sustainable materials and are manufactured responsibly. However, not all companies advertising nontoxic mattresses use eco-friendly processes or materials.

Researching brands and practices is key. Some mattress manufacturers provide sustainability reports or social responsibility statements, for example.

The life span of a mattress is usually around 7 years. Some locations and companies offer mattress recycling. Also, some brands collect and recycle old mattresses for an additional fee when a person makes a purchase.

The least toxic options are mattresses with certifications such as GOTS, GOLS, CertiPUR-US, OEKO-TEX, and Greenguard Gold.

A person might consider two factors: the quality of their sleep and the level of exposure to potentially harmful chemicals.

Finding a mattress with the right firmness and features, such as cooling technology, can help improve sleep and overall health.

GOTS, GOLS, CertiPUR-US, OEKO-TEX, and Greenguard Gold certifications indicate steps to reduce the toxicity of mattresses.

Anyone interested in a nontoxic mattress can seek certifications from independent testing authorities.

Nontoxic mattresses are generally free from chemical fire retardants and other potentially harmful compounds. They usually contain organic latex, cotton, or wool.