Visco Elastic Foam vs Gel

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Visco Elastic Foam

Visco elastic foam is another term for memory foam. It is a blend of polyurethane foam that was developed for airplane cushions by a NASA contract in the 1970s.

The difference between visco elastic foam and other types of polyurethane foam is its slow response and low resistance. Its soft surface allows for contouring and its slow response lowers bounce.

Visco elastic foam, like all polyurethane foam, is made from a blend of substances and has a tendency to off-gas. Those with lung sensitivities should do additional research about the quality of foam to ensure that it won't aggravate them.

Pros: Contouring comfort, competitive pricepoints, and widespread options.

Cons: Sagging and off-gassing problems with lower quality foams.

Gel

Gel is a recent newcomer to the mattress space. It is being used as both a standalone layer and an infusion into foam. Gel benefits mattresses by retaining less heat than memory foam. Also, newer gels compete against memory foam by being more responsive and less toxic.

Gel is similar to foam because it is a polymer made by blending plastics and other chemicals.

Because of gel's heat diffusing properties, it is generally found in the top layer of the mattress under the cover.

Pros: Cooler sleeping surface vs memory foam. More responsive feel when not combined with foam.

Cons: Similar to foam, it is a synthetic blend of chemicals.


Learn More About Visco Elastic Foam

Learn More About Gel

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Material Scores

Overall Score:
Visco Elastic Foam: 9.3/10
Gel: 8.6/10

Comfort:
Visco Elastic Foam: 9.4/10
Gel: 8.7/10

Softness:
Visco Elastic Foam: 9.5/10
Gel: 8/10

Cooling:
Visco Elastic Foam: 8/10
Gel: 8.1/10

Hypoallergenic:
Visco Elastic Foam: 8.1/10
Gel: 8.1/10

Odor:
Visco Elastic Foam: 8.4/10
Gel: 8.9/10

General Support:
Visco Elastic Foam: 8.7/10
Gel: 9.5/10

Eco-Conscious:
Visco Elastic Foam: 8/10
Gel: 8.1/10

Price Value:
Visco Elastic Foam: 9.4/10
Gel: 8.1/10

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