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More players bring gel bedding to market

HIGH POINT - The gel bedding movement gains ground here with two new players entering the market.
     Top 10 bedding producer Therapedic introduces its GelTouch line, which features Theragel from foam supplier Future Foam. That gel provides a cooler night of sleep than a leading competitor's gel memory foam beds, according to Therapedic officials.
     Jamison, repositioning its brand here with several new product lines, is introducing its Gel Comfort line, which incorporates JGel. Jamison officials say that formulation of high-density memory foam is blended with gel beds that are significantly more substantial than those in other gel foams, thus improving the line's temperature control performance.
     Jamison said it became the first U.S. mattress producer to adopt JGel in early product presentations in August to retailers.
     Therapedic and Jamison join at least five other bedding producers with gel beds: Serta, Simmons, Gold Bond, Classic Brands and Natura. Those companies all exhibited gel beds at the recent Las Vegas Market. Serta launched the gel boom at the first Las Vegas Market this year with the introduction of its iComfort line, featuring gel-infused memory foam beds. That line has been a retail hit, and Serta followed it up with what it said was the introduction of the first gel latex bed at the summer Las Vegas Market. Serta shows its full gel bedding assortment at this market.
     Simmons has gel in some of its new ComforPedic Loft models, first introduced in Las Vegas and now being shown in High Point.
     Gold Bond's gel line is called Cool Response Gel, with models retailing from $1,099 to $1,499. That producer says its line offers "enhanced specifications" compared to competitors' gel beds.
     Classic Brands says it has been developing and testing gel products since 2008, and now has a gel product that it can price aggressively to make its benefits available to a wider group of consumers. Retails for Classic's Cool Gel memory foam models range from $899 to $1,399. A Cool Gel memory foam pillow rounds out the program.
     Natura's gel is called Nex-Gel, and it features columns of gel that buckle under pressure. This market the company adds a line of NexGel pillows. Three styles are offered.
     Also making a gel introduction this market is Pure LatexBliss. Its new "GEL inside" collection of pillows and toppers is made from natural Talalay latex and utilizes what the company calls Active Gel technology. Kurt Ling, CEO of Pure LatexBliss, says that is "the industry's first non-static gel technology," utilizing phase change material, which stores and releases energy on demand. It helps people sleep cooler in the summer and warmer in the winter, the company says.
     "Sleeping is not a ‘one-type fits all' activity," Ling said. "Most of us know a couple where one spouse sleeps hot and the other sleeps cool. And most of us live in a climate that requires more than a static function of sleep components. Our GEL inside collection is ideal for couples who are opposites for a host of reasons and for those who live in climates where there is a change of seasons."
     Pure LatexBliss will introduce "GEL inside" technology in mattresses at the Las Vegas Market in January.

David PerryDavid Perry | Executive Editor, Furniture Today
dperry@furnituretoday.com

Hi, online readers. I'm David Perry, executive editor of Furniture/Today, and the writer on the mattress beat. Get my musings on mattresses on our web site and on my Twitter feed. And let me know what you would like me to write about in the wonderful world of mattresses.

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