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AirFoam vs. latex illustration

Nolah AirFoam™ vs. Latex


Lindsey S.
Aug 25, 2022

In This Article

In this article

Looking for a bed that contours to your curves and cradles your joints as you sleep? Nolah AirFoam™ and all-natural latex both fit the bill.

These cushioning materials provide spine-aligning support and outperform memory foam in pressure relief, cooling, and durability. With either AirFoam™ or latex foam, you’ll enjoy pain-free nights of restorative rest.

AirFoam™ and latex have these sleep benefits in common, but they differ in feel, among other qualities. To decide which Nolah mattress best suits your needs, you’ll want to understand the key differences between these two premium mattress materials.

Before diving into the details of these two materials, mattress shoppers should know that one isn’t “better” than the other.

Sleep is personal, and individuals have unique mattress needs and preferences. To choose your perfect fit, keep the specific pain points that prevent you from getting a good night’s rest in mind, and let them guide you to the mattress materials and features that best address those issues.

What Is Nolah AirFoam™?

At Nolah, our mattresses never use outdated memory foam. Instead, we craft our foam models with our proprietary polyurethane foam, perfected through months of research and reiteration. We call it Nolah AirFoam™, named for the billions of microscopic air bubbles within the foam that redistribute a sleeper’s weight for unparalleled pressure relief.

Unlike memory foam, AirFoam™ contains zero heat-sensitive viscoelastic chemicals. As a result, it’s temperature neutral, keeping cool all night and remaining consistently firm year-round, regardless of the heat or humidity. Testing also shows that Nolah AirFoam™ is up to 300 percent more durable than high-end memory foam.

Nolah AirFoam™ is up to 300 percent more durable than high-end memory foam.

What Is Latex Foam?

While some mattress makers choose synthetic latex, Nolah exclusively uses natural latex foam made from the sap-like serum of rubber trees. Natural latex is a highly sustainable material; tapping the serum does not damage or endanger the trees.

How do manufacturers turn the serum into foam? They whip the latex until it has a frothy consistency, set it in a mold, and bake it. The exact process varies depending on the type of latex foam in production, such as Talalay or Dunlop latex.

At Nolah, we use Talalay because of its superior breathability and durability. The remainder of this article will discuss the performance and benefits of Talalay latex specifically.

Nolah AirFoam™ vs. Latex Mattress Qualities

To help shoppers better understand their options, we’ve compiled direct comparisons between AirFoam™ and Talalay latex in all the essential mattress performance categories. Next, we’ll go over the specifications of each Nolah mattress and how they use these materials to enhance your sleep.

Firmness, Feel, and Contouring

AirFoam™ and latex foam can be produced in a range of firmness levels, varying in feel and degree of contouring. In our multi-layer mattresses, we generally use plusher foam for the upper comfort layers and firmer foam for the support layers underneath.

As they’re both malleable foams, AirFoam™ and Talalay latex have a similar feel. However, latex is bouncier, and AirFoam™ contours closer. Think of it like this: AirFoam™ makes you feel like you’re sleeping in a cloud, and latex makes you feel like you’re sleeping on top of it.

Both materials respond to your movements and cushion your joints without sinking in too far like memory foam. They’re also both temperature neutral, meaning they don’t feel softer or contour deeper under heat.

Pressure Relief

Pressure relief refers to a material’s ability to redistribute body weight, spreading it across the mattress surface and lowering peak pressure. This relieves tension around critical areas and joints, like your shoulders, spine, hips, and knees, depending on your sleep position.

AirFoam™ and Talalay latex excel in pressure relief because of their composition. As previously mentioned, AirFoam™ contains billions of microscopic air bubbles that redistribute body weight. Talalay latex also has pressure-relieving air bubbles within, thanks to the frothing and setting steps of the foam’s production.

For comparison, AirFoam™ offers four times better pressure relief than traditional memory foam, and Talalay latex offers 33 percent more relief than Dunlop latex.


Hot sleepers will find relief from both AirFoam™ and natural latex. The foams have highly breathable structures, allowing air to flow freely for freshness and drying. Neither contains the heat-trapping viscoelastic chemicals used to make memory foam and are 100 percent temperature neutral.

Which material sleeps cooler? While both offer exceptional cooling, Talalay latex has a slight edge over AirFoam™.

Edge Support

In general, all-foam mattresses don’t provide as much edge support as hybrid and innerspring models. That said, AirFoam™ and Talalay latex are among the strongest forms of mattress foams. All around, they provide more support than memory foam alternatives.

For sleepers who need heightened edge support, we recommend our AirFoamICE™ hybrid (the Nolah Evolution) or Talalay latex hybrids (the Nolah Natural or Nolah Nurture for kids). Our hybrid models combine these pressure-relieving foams with coils underneath for maximum support everywhere, including the edges.


When it comes to durability, shoppers can’t go wrong with AirFoam™ or Talalay latex. Nolah is so confident in the strength and longevity of these materials that we offer a lifetime warranty on every mattress. That said, Talalay latex is the most durable of our mattress foams. 


Durability lends itself to sustainability. When you buy a higher quality mattress, it lasts longer, meaning you’ll own fewer mattresses in your lifetime.

All Nolah mattresses are also free of any harsh, harmful chemicals. Our AirFoam™ and AirFoamICE™ have CertiPUR-US® certification, while the latex we use for the Nolah Natural and Nolah Nurture have Oeko-Tex® 100 and eco-INSTITUTE certification. These latex hybrids also have Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) components and Rainforest Alliance certification.

Talalay latex itself is also biodegradable and naturally hypoallergenic. As explained above, tapping latex serum does not harm rubber trees. These formidable trees can produce the serum for up to 30 years and live for 100.

Nolah AirFoam™ Mattresses

Now that you know all about the benefits of Nolah AirFoam™ and Talalay latex, you’re ready to choose a specific mattress! The Nolah Original, Signature, and Evolution all use AirFoam™ or AirFoamICE™, the second-generation version of our proprietary foam infused with graphite for enhanced cooling. 

Nolah Latex Mattresses

Next up, we have our all-natural Talalay latex hybrid options: the Nolah Natural and Nolah Nurture for kids.

Final Thoughts

Hopefully, this guide has helped you decide between these two premium mattress materials and pick which Nolah model is right for you! Whichever you choose, you’re on your way to pain-free nights and better rest. If you have any lingering questions, don’t hesitate to contact our mattress experts via Live Chat, phone, or email.

Disclaimer: Nolah does not provide medical advice. All resources on the Nolah blog, including this article, are informational only and do not replace professional medical counsel. Talk to your doctor about any health, mental health, or sleep-related issues.


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