30th June 2023
Guides & Advice
Wool is one of the most beneficial and natural materials we use in our mattresses. We champion the use of wool, especially locally sourced British wool such as that from our own Yorkshire farm. Here are 10 facts about sheep and wool that detail why wool is such a great material to work with and why we include it in our all-natural mattresses. Having a wool mattress is very beneficial to sleep quality and it is easy to look after and keep clean.
What are the benefits of sleeping on a wool mattress?
Deciding on a new mattress can feel like a daunting task. There are lots of different types and sizes available, and you might not know where to begin. More and more people are choosing the traditional material of wool for their next mattress investment.
Keep reading if you’re interested in learning more about wool mattresses and the sustainable properties of this natural material…
10 reasons to switch to a wool mattress
1. Temperature-regulating properties
One of the most important factors in achieving great sleep is maintaining a comfortable temperature. Wool has great natural breathability, insulation and moisture-wicking properties. This means that in summer sweat and heat can be wicked through the layers of wool fibers, while in winter the layers trap warm air in and help to keep you warm. Wool is one of the best temperature regulators, meaning if you are a cold sleeper it would be a good idea to consider a wool mattress. Read here to find out the best mattress for cold sleepers.
2. Sustainable, recycling and biodegradable
Wool takes less energy to process in its production cycle than man-made fibres, helping to keep carbon dioxide emissions low. Sheep also contribute to their natural ecosystem by eating coarse shrubs and vegetation, helping smaller plant life to flourish all while keeping the luscious green of the countryside intact. At the end of its life-cycle wool is 100% recyclable and biodegradable meaning it will not fill up landfill or contaminate land. As a company, we strive to be circular by design, click here to find out more about our sustainability.
3. Naturally supportive
The most obvious question you may ask yourself when you’re considering a wool mattress is are wool mattresses comfortable?
Wool fibres are powered the same as tightly coiled springs which means that they can consistently resist pressure and spring back to keep their shape. This makes wool ideal for use as a mattress filling, it will not lose its shape or structure when slept on and will consistently provide a supportive and comfortable sleeping surface.
Wool is a natural air purifier. It can absorb and hold volatile organic compounds (VOC’s) – invisible air pollutants, as well as trapping and holding onto dust particles. This can be great for those who suffer with allergies or hay fever in the summer months and helps to create the healthiest sleeping surface possible.
Learn more about anti-allergy mattresses with our blog, The Best Hypoallergenic Mattress
5. Fire retardant by nature
Naturally fire retardant, wool is difficult to burn due to its nitrogen and water content. This means that no extra chemicals are needed to treat it, making it safer and cleaner for use in sleep surfaces.
6. One sheep can go a long way
A single fleece produces around 4 kilograms of wool which in turn makes around ten meters of fabric. We use one and a half full fleeces in each of our mattresses, meaning a luscious layer of soft and supportive wool for every sleep.
7. And there’s a lot of sheep around
There are over thirty-three million sheep in the UK – a quarter of the total EU sheep flock. On our farm, we have six hundred of our own sheep who we rear in exchange for their fleeces, and source the rest of the wool we require from other local Yorkshire farms and throughout the North of England via the British Wool Marketing Board.
8. The UK is renowned for wool production
The UK is one of the world leaders in wool production. The British Isles are the sixth largest producer of wool globally, and with over 60 unique breeds the UK has the widest variety of sheep of any country in the world. On our farm we breed Suffolk, Texel, Zwartble and rare – breed Wensleydale sheep.
9. Wool has been used throughout the ages
Sheep have been reared by humans for thousands of years, and the first British domesticated sheep date back to around 4,000 B.C. Over time sheep have been crossbred for specific qualities such as shrink resistance, durability and stain-proofing.
The Campaign for Wool aims to promote and celebrate everything to do with UK wool. The campaign officially began in 2010 with a launch event that saw Savile Row in London transformed into a grazing pasture for 50 sheep. Over 100 companies participated and thousands of consumers took part. The campaigns patron King Charles works passionately to promote UK Wool, in 2016 he endorsed the Dumfries House Declaration. This is a ten-point declaration of intent to support an environmentally responsible, sustainable, and commercially viable wool industry. To find out more about the Campaign for Wool visit their website.
10. It’s a bad environment for dust mites
Wool is extremely absorbent and moisture wicking therefore using it in mattresses ensures that your mattress remains a dry environment. This is a bad environment for dust mites to thrive as they like high humidity levels. A dry environment is also an unwelcoming environment for bacteria and mold. Therefore, having wool closest to the sleeping surface ensures that our mattresses are a bad environment for these nasties to thrive.
How to clean a wool mattress
The best way to remove dust from your mattress is by using a dry brush every few months, this gently removes the dust without unsettling the fillings inside of the mattress. It is important to never use a vacuum cleaner on your mattress as this can displace the fillings and make your mattress uncomfortable.
For tips on how to clean your mattress please visit our how to clean your mattress guide.
Rare breed wool
Our Adam Henson collection of mattresses is all made with special rare breed wool from indigenous Cotswold breeds. Adam himself champions these breeds for their unique and lustrous wool coats and also promotes their conservation as they are currently at-risk sheep with only 900 to 1500 sheep left.
To shop the Adam Henson collection click here.
The Fairford 29,300 and Snowhill 32,300 are both in our Adam Henson collection both handcrafted and luxuriously comfortable. Both contain Wensleydale wool and Golden fleece, responsibly sourced from British farmers.
To conclude wool is an exceptional material, it has many wonderful qualities which make it perfect to use within our mattresses. We are dedicated to ensuring fair pay for farmers for their wool and also to keep using this valuable natural product within our production process.
If you are interested in trying one of our mattresses use our find a retailer feature to find the closest Harrison Spinks mattress to you.