Memory foam is a blend of polyurethane (a polymer made as a byproduct of petroleum refining) and additional chemicals that give the memory foam its low-resilience. It was originally developed by NASA in the 1970s for airplane cushioning and has since become one of the widest materials used in mattresses and pillows.
In plain English, what makes memory foam is its ability to contour to pressure and return to its original shape slowly after pressure is released. This process allows for it to react to pressure differently across its surface and provide a contoured, but aligned feeling for sleepers.
In mattresses, older or lower quality memory foam may sag from the repetitive pressure of laying or sitting. For this reason, those that are heavier should do additional research about soft memory foam bedding as they will sink more than alternatives and could lead to discomfort for some body types.
Lastly, over the recent years, there has been reports of off-gassing and toxic odors released from memory foam. Some lower quality or treated memory foam may have this problem and cause respiratory inflamation. It is important to make sure that memory foam is high quality.
Pros: Contouring comfort, competitive pricepoints, and widespread options.
Cons: Sagging and off-gassing problems with lower quality foams.
Tempur material is memory foam manufactured by Tempur-pedic. Tempur-pedic owns the original formula of memory foam developed by a NASA contract.
Tempur-pedic offers a variety of mattresses from firm to plush that use varying degrees of Tempur material along with higher density foams.
The main difference between Tempur and other types of memory foams that have been developed by competing foam manufacturers and mattress makers is the blend of substances in the memory foam.
Pros: Tempur material is the 'original' memory foam and has been refined by Tempur-pedic's scientists over the years specifically for mattresses whereas other types of memory foam may not have been as well developed.
Cons: Like other memory foams, Tempur material is a polyurethane foam blend and prone to claims of off-gassing.
Memory Foam: 9.3/10
Memory Foam: 9.4/10
Memory Foam: 9.5/10
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Memory Foam: 8.1/10
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Memory Foam: 8.5/10
Memory Foam: 9.4/10