- Ideal for side and stomach sleepers
- Ideal for back sleepers who like soft firmness
- Good heat regulation
- No long term smell
- May be too soft for some back sleepers
- May have a strong initial odor
- Made in China (however, it is CertiPUR certified)
The Zinus 12-inch Memory Foam Green Tea Mattress is an awesome mattress. It provides enough density and support to accommodate back sleepers, but has a soft-level and plushy firmness that will be a godsend for stomach and side sleepers.
Add to that the fact that the Zinus utilizes high quality, CertiPUR memory foam for its 12-inch thick luxurious mattress, and you have yourself a great product to last you the next 5 years.
For this review I personally tested out the Queen-size version of the Zinus 12-inch Memory Foam Green Tea Mattress for a week using our standard Zen Sleeping Scoring System. This holistic approach reviews 5 main categories: Initial Checks, Feel & Firmness, Smell, Heat Regulation, and Value, each worth a possible maximum 20 points.
The “Quick Summary” you see above takes our Zen Sleeping Score and gives it an aggregate rating, as well as a breakdown of each category (with a 10-point system). While the Quick Summary provides some useful, fast information, the full review will illuminate a whole lot of factors that you will need to know before deciding whether to buy this mattress.
To supplement my personal test of the mattress, I also conducted questionnaires with over 50 verified purchasers of the product – 36 of whom have owned the mattress more than 6 months.
I will share relevant statistics and polls from them throughout the review, as you can get a much better understanding of a mattress’s possible performance by testing it for months instead of a week.
See you on the flip side!
Table of Contents
1. Where was the memory foam mattress produced?
The Zinus 12-inch Memory Foam Green Tea Mattress is produced in China by Zinus and was first released on November 26, 2014. Normally seeing “China” in the world of memory foam is a deal-breaker for me, as I only like to review mattresses made in the USA. However, as you will see in the next section, they disclose enough about their materials and quality control for me to trust that their memory foam mattresses are not harmful or made with dangerous chemicals.
While this specific memory foam mattress is sold through Amazon, Zinus also has their own website which provides a lot of useful information about more of their products (check out their FAQ, it’s very informative.) For this section, I award 3 out of 5 points.
2. Is the manufacturer listed on the CertiPUR-US site?
Yes, which means their mattresses are :
– Made without ozone depletes
– Made without PBDE flame retardants
– Made without mercury, lead, and other heavy materials
– Made without phthalates regulated by Consumer Product Safety Commission
– Low VOC (Volatile Organic Compound) emissions for indoor air quality
This is what I was referring to in the previous point. Normally mattress manufacturers from China are not CertiPUR certified, and so it is near impossible to judge the quality standards of the raw materials they use. Many times, the products can be made with chemicals that are not only irritable to humans, but harmful as well. That is not the case with Zinus, though – or else I would not even go through with the review. 5 out of 5 points here.
3. What is the actual thickness/ density of the memory foam layer?
The Zinus 12-inch Memory Foam Green Tea Mattress offers a memory foam top layer thickness of 3 inches, which carries a density of 3 lbs pcf. This is the sweet spot of memory foam thickness and density; you should be looking for a memory foam layer of at least 2-4 inches with a density of 3 lb pcf or greater. The Zinus 12-inch falls in the middle for thickness, and on the lower end for density. We will test for Feel & Firmness later, but this combination of thickness and density implies that the mattress should be ideal for both back, stomach, and side sleepers. I award 5 out of 5 points for the top layer check.
4. What is the actual thickness of the foam in the supporting layers?
The Zinus 12-inch Memory Foam Green Tea Mattress provides 3 supporting foam layers. Right below the top memory foam layer we have a 2-inch layer of Zinus Pressure Relieving Comfort Foam, which aids the memory foam in conforming to your body. Next up we have two 3.5-inch layers made with Airflow High Density Convoluted Foam.
These two bottom layers serve to provide the base support for the rest of the mattress, and the convoluted shape of the foam in these layers is supposed to encourage airflow throughout the night so you don’t wake up sweating or too hot. I’m usually not a big fan of convoluted, or egg crate foam because many mediocre mattress manufacturers use it along with other high-density foam in the same layer to prop up the mattress and add depth. However, when used 100% as its own layer, convoluted foam has its benefits. In this case I think the use of convoluted foam is a good thing, so no worries there. 5 out of 5 points here!
In total, I have awarded 18 out of 20 points for this section.
Feel & Firmness
The Feel & Firmness section of my review is always pretty loaded, so in the following paragraphs I will break down each factor I’m reviewing for; it’s actually pretty simple once you see my thought process. I first set the mattress on a foundation mattress and sleep on it for a week, taking notes to provide an aggregate report of how it felt overall, and how firm it was. Then, I ask verified purchasers to gauge their opinions in terms of feel, as well as their scores on three very important factors of durability (more on that in a little bit).
A soft and plush feel
For my 200 lb frame, I did not feel stiffness or an overpowering firmness from the mattress at all; on the other hand, I normally prefer medium-level firmness, so this mattress was slightly too soft for me. Luckily, I did not sink into the mattress or feel a bowing effect (when your butt sinks too low but your head and feet remain high), so that was a big plus. I also did not report tossing and turning at all. So, I would definitely rate the Zinus 12-inch as a memory foam mattress with soft-level firmness. As I already said though, don’t mistake “soft” with “sinking”. I would highly recommend the mattress to anyone who either sleeps on their back and likes soft-level firm memory foam, or sleeps on their stomach or sides and likes a comfortable level of firmness with a soft feel. Typically, side and stomach sleepers need a softer sleeping surface than back sleepers to attain the same level of comfort. If you are a side or stomach sleeper, the Zinus 12-inch Memory Foam Green Tea Mattress will probably feel perfect for you. On the other hand, if you’re a back sleeper or just typically prefer mattresses with a medium-level firmness or greater, I’d look into getting the Sleep Innovations Shiloh 12-inch Memory Foam Mattress.
The perfect fit for side and stomach sleepers
Of the 50 customers I interviewed, 32 of them thought the Zinus 12-inch Memory Foam Green Tea Mattress was a perfect fit for them. Of the remaining 18, 12 of them thought it was too soft, and 6 thought it was too firm. My rule of thumb: Soft-level firmness, a bit too soft for my back, and no tossing or turning. In terms of feel & firmness, it is a great memory foam mattress for side and stomach sleepers, as well as back sleepers who like their mattresses to be softer.
For testing the durability of the Zinus 12-inch Memory Foam Green Tea Mattress, I considered three key factors: garment construction, surface / edge abrasion, and stain release. For all of these factors, I turned to my trustworthy 36 verified purchasers who have owned the product for more than 6 months. They are the perfect candidates to rate these factors as they have used, washed, dried, and generally observed any wear and tear of the mattress over a considerably longer period of time than I have.
Garment construction refers to how resistant the mattress is to tears at the seams, body and sleeves. The more durable a mattress is, the more resistant it is to these types of tears. The Zinus 12-inch passed this test with flying colors: no visible garment tears at the seams, body or sleeves were reported by any of the 36 customers.
Surface / edge abrasion refers to how resistant the memory foam mattress is against wearing away when rubbed against another surface. Since the mattress will be rubbed against your skin, the washing machine, the drier, and everything in between, this is an extremely important factor to review. Again, all 36 customers reported seeing no types of surface or edge abrasion. Many of the customers noted that the knitted jacquard cover used in the Zinus 12-inch is nice and sturdy.
Stain release refers to how effectively the mattress can release stains. It’s important for two reasons: durability and aesthetics. A more durable mattress typically will be able to release stubborn stains with ease, and secondly, who likes to sleep on a mattress with stains?! 20 of the 36 customers noted that they had had spills on the mattress, and that the stains were removed with relative ease. The other 16 did not note the presence of any stains or previous spills, so their opinions were not used. Thankfully, it seems like the Zinus 12-inch is a great stain releasing mattress!
After having tested the feel, firmness, and durability of the Zinus 12-inch Memory Foam Green Tea Mattress, I believe it deserves 18.5 points out of 20 points for this section.
Smell is often a hot topic for memory foam mattress buyers. When purchasing from
Amazon or other online retailers, a memory foam mattress will come packaged in airtight plastic. Be careful when opening, though – you might be rewarded with a very strong “new memory foam mattress” smell! It is very hard to rate how strong a memory foam mattress will initially smell, mostly because everyone has a different tolerance for smells, and also because the same brand of memory foam mattress can smell very differently depending on how long the mattress has been shipping, the climate during the time it was shipped, and the climate of the receiver who unpackages the mattress. In all these variables, however, there is one constant: air. The more you let your memory foam mattress air out in the first few days, the less you will have to deal with the lingering smell. In my case, the Zinus-12 inch Memory Foam Green Tea Mattress smelled quite strongly upon unpacking. I immediately placed it in a well-ventilated room that receives a lot of sunlight throughout the day, and let that bad boy be. I returned about 2 days later to check on the mattress, and the smell was completely gone.
May smell strong, air out for 2 days
As for the customers I interviewed, it was a complete toss-up. Out of the 50 total, 27 thought it didn’t smell at all, 15 thought it had a light to medium smell that went away eventually, 7 thought it smelled very strongly but eventually went away, and 1 thought it smelled very strongly but never went away (they returned it). So I guess in this case, I was in the minority of customers. Since the majority didn’t have major issues with smell, I will award 17 out of 20 points in this section.
To give you guys an in-depth insight into heat regulation with respect to the Zinus 12-inch, I took a two-pronged approach to my analysis: first, I recorded how hot I felt during a week’s worth of sleeping on this mattress. Then, I consulted with my 50 verified purchasers to gauge their opinions on how hot the Zinus sleeps. In my case, there were no issues with regards to heat regulation. While I wouldn’t necessarily consider the Zinus 12-inch Memory Foam Green Tea Mattress as feeling cool or neutral, it never reached the point where I felt hot or sticky. I’d describe it more as a “warm and toasty” feeling, which I’m usually a fan of… especially during winter.
Most of my interviewees echoed similar opinions to mine; 35 of them had no issue at all with the Zinus 12-inch becoming too hot at night, 10 of them reported it feeling hot but not too hot, and 5 said it was too hot to get a good night’s sleep. Those are some pretty good statistics, especially considering that a lot of people tend to be very sensitive when it comes to heat. As long as you don’t overdo it with blankets and sheets, I’d say the Zinus 12-inch Memory Foam Green Tea Mattress will feel great for you. So, I award 18 out of 20 points for this section.
There is a lot I’ve said about this mattress, but there’s also a small tidbit I haven’t brought up yet! You may have noticed that the name “Zinus 12-inch Memory Foam Green Tea Mattress” includes the words “Green Tea”… why is that? Well, Zinus infuses its memory foam products with green tea extract, which maintains the freshness of the mattress and blocks odors without the use of chemicals. Simply put, there is a lot I really like about this memory foam mattress. It is effectively a 4-layered mattress with a total thickness of 12 supreme inches, all made with high quality CertiPUR raw materials. Even better, you can get a great night’s rest regardless of your preferred sleeping position, which for many memory foam mattresses is a very difficult balance to strike. Not only that, but Zinus prides itself on sustainability and reducing emissions, which is great. For value, I award 20 out of 20 points.
Zen Sleeping Score
We at Zen Sleeping believe that a mattress with a score of >70 passes our performance standards. After adding up the totals of each section, we are glad to report that the Zinus 12-inch Memory Foam Green Tea Mattress has attained a Zen Sleeping Score of 91.5! Below you will see a breakdown of how each section in this review stacks up against one another.
Thank you Nathan for this in-depth review of the Zinus 12 Inch Green Tea Memory Foam Mattress, this is probably the most in-depth review that I have seen of it, well done.
This was my first memory foam and foam mattress ever (for most of my life I have slept on thin open spring mattresses unfortunately), to me it feels more medium-firm until it adjusts to my body heat and then it feels maybe low-firm which is a firmer than I am used to and like but it is manageable once it softens and then I am able to go to sleep, if it was a bit softer it would be even better for a mostly side sleepers like myself who also sleeps on my back and stomach but mostly on my sides; but maybe it will get a bit softer with time.
It is definitely a supportive mattress and is affordable, it only had a slight almost tea-like smell when I first got it so the smell was not strong and it did not bother me and it mostly went away after two or three days of airing out, but the mattress only expanded to about 11 1/2 inches (maybe because of the two convoluted high-density support foam layers).
One downside is the Zinus support (person) who did not answer some of my questions, gave conflicting answers, gave incorrect information, ignored a lot of my comments and questions until I stopped bothering to waste my time contacting them, and some issues that I reported were never fixed; and I was only asking basic questions and making basic suggestions and reporting basic errors, and it was this same support person every time who did a terrible job.
Another thing that I do not like is how Zinus uses different brand names (Spa Sensations, Sleep Master, Sleep Revolution, Best Price(d), and maybe more) and different model names for the same mattresses with each retailer they sell their products on which causes confusion and complicates things and causes other problems like mismatched pricing and other pricing errors, not being able to price match with some retailers, errors in descriptions (image and text), makes them seem less trustworthy, and more; Zinus should use the same brand name and model names to help avoid these problems in my opinion.
Also do not like how filling out the warranty form does not even include a space to put the model number or serial number of your mattress or any detailed information so that they will know which mattresses are registered, and they do not email you a receipt or confirmation or proof of the warranty form being completed on their website other than a message on the website which offers no details or proof.
Great review and thank you for taking the time to break down the pros/cons. Just got this mattress!
Thank you for conducting a very thorough review. I feel you went into details better than just about any other review I have seen for this product.