How to Choose a Mattress Topper?

Sometimes mattresses can’t provide you with the level of comfort you need. It can be perhaps because your mattress is too hard, you wake up frequently because your partner moves around too much, or maybe you just can’t get enough comfortable. One great option is to get a mattress topper for your bed.

It can be a great way to revitalize your bed as it will provide you with extra support and extra cushioning and it will not cost you as much as buying the new mattress.

There are different types of mattress toppers, so it can be difficult for you to determine which one would work the best for your specific needs and sleep preferences. You might find it hard to decide what material to buy, what thickness is right for you, how much to spend, etc.

Some of the most popular types of mattress toppers are memory foam, latex, cotton, wool etc. With some careful research you will be able to get the right one that will give you what you need at a more than a reasonable price.

In this article, we will take a look at the pros and cons of each type of material and at some of the key factors which can help you bring your decision easier.

Key Points to Consider

With so many different mattress toppers, it can be hard to choose one for you, so you should decide what exactly you need from a topper first, then figure out what material will best meet your needs.

Here are some of the key factors you should take into consideration:


A higher price doesn’t necessarily guarantee the mattress topper would be better for you personally. You should look for one that will meet your needs and not simply buy the most expensive you can afford.

Support and Comfort

If you prefer a firmer feel and you like extra support for your back and limbs, then you should opt for a latex topper.

However, if you prefer a softer feel and a topper that will cradle your body and relieve pressure points, then memory foam topper would be perfect for you, or a topper made of naturally soft material such as down or cotton.

Thickness and Density

Mattress toppers vary in thickness from 2 to 8 inches. If you have a firm mattress and you are looking for a topper that would relieve your pressure points and allow you to sleep on your side, or if you weigh more than average, then you may need to look for thicker options. The materials with the best range of thicknesses are memory foam and latex.

The density of a topper determines how much support it will provide you. Here again, memory foam and latex mattress toppers usually have the largest choice, allowing you to find just the right level of comfort that you need.

Motion Transfer

Memory foam and latex mattress toppers are also good at reducing the transmission of movement between you and your partner. So if you sleep with a restless sleeper, whose tossing and turning might keep you awake, these toppers are good options.

Sleeping Hot

If you are looking for a mattress topper that will sleep cool and keep you comfortable all night long then you should avoid those made entirely of memory foam as memory foam tends to retain the most body heat.

Latex is known for its natural cooling properties, so latex mattress toppers would be good choice as well as those made of down, wool and feather. The latter are good all year round as they will keep you warm in winter and reduce heat retention in summer.

The cover of the mattress topper also plays a huge role in sleeping cool, so you should opt for those toppers with covers good at wicking away sweat.

Also, the thickness of the toppers can determine how hot or cool they will sleep, and those thicker toppers usually sleep hotter than thinner ones despite the attempts of manufacturers to add some special cooling elements like cooling gel or ventilation tubes.


Also the toppers made of certain materials are better for allergies while other are also more resistant to dust mites, bed bugs, mold and mildew.

Ease of Moving and Cleaning

Be aware of the overall weight of the mattress topper before you proceed to buy it. Remember that you need to remove it from the packaging, put it on the bed and remove it at least once or twice a year for cleaning.

While down, feather and cotton are easier to move than memory foam or latex, they are far more difficult to clean.

What Type of Material to Choose

Mattress toppers come in a range of different materials and styles and it’s important to know what you hope to gain from using a topper and what are the pros and cons of each material.

Memory Foam

Although memory foam mattress toppers can be a bit expensive, they are a popular choice as they perfectly contour to the specific curves of your body, absorb movement and noise.

Memory foam toppers also offer a lot of thickness choices, so you can easily find the level of comfort and support you need. Memory foam will conform to your body and provide you with a supportive and relaxing surface to sleep on. It will also reduce the amount of motion transfer and noise.

These toppers also come in varying densities. A density of most of them ranges between 2 and 6+ pounds per cubic feet. The toppers of higher density memory foam will usually cost more, but they will provide much better support for the body and longer-lasting conformity.

If your memory foam mattress topper has a density of 3 pounds or under per cubic feet, it will  feel softer and be less supportive than those of higher densities. It will allow your body to sink into it faster than toppers of higher densities. They are also lightweight and easier to transport.

Memory foam mattress toppers with a density of 4 to 5 pounds per cubic feet work well for most people as they provide a good balance of comfort and support.

Toppers with a density of 6+ pounds per cubic feet are the best for people who have medical needs and are in need of a high level of support for the body. They will slowly conform to their body shape and weight and provide a good support much longer than those with the lower densities.

The major downside of memory foam mattress toppers is that they are made of a synthetic material that can have a bit of off/gassing but that usually dissipates after a few days.

Besides this, memory foam will retain body heat more than some other materials. So, if you tend to overheat during the night it is better to look for a breathable memory foam mattress topper.


Latex mattress toppers are the most expensive option, but like memory foam toppers, they can provide excellent comfort and support. They can provide comfort and relieve pressure points by making your mattress harder or softer. They feel firmer than memory foam, but are still soft enough to provide you with a comfortable night’s sleep.

Besides this, toppers made of 100% natural latex are also antimicrobial, non-allergic and more durable than any other type of a mattress topper. Latex toppers offer a wide range of thickness and support options.

Like with memory foam mattress toppers, these have some disadvantages too. As we have already mentioned, they can be very expensive due to the complicated nature of latex production. They may not be perfect for people who are allergic to latex.


Wool is a natural material, and wool mattress toppers can be a bit expensive too. Wool is also one of the most durable materials, and yet it is soft and comfortable. It is particularly suitable for those who suffer from allergies and can even keep bed bugs away from your mattress.

That’s why wool mattress toppers make a wonderfully luxurious addition to your mattress and they will also keep you cool in summer and warm in winter and wick away any excessive moisture.

There are some bad sides with toppers of this material as well. They can be more expensive than other toppers made of other materials and they may not provide the same cushioning as memory foam.

Down or Feathers

Toppers made from goose or duck feathers, or even softer and more luxurious down are perfect for those looking for a soft and comforting feel.

They are also good at reducing motion transfer between partners and at regulating heat in the summer and winter. These toppers are very durable as well and will last for several years.

However, if you are allergic on feathers or you need a firmer topper, these may not be the right choice for you. They may not be thick enough to disguise an old and lumpy mattress and may need fluffing to keep their shape.

Cotton and Polyester

There is a wide range of mattress toppers made from polyester and cotton and they also range in price. Polyester toppers are very affordable.

The advantages to cotton and polyester mattress toppers are that they are very easy to maintain and are good for those looking for a softer feel, but they are not so durable like the toppers made of some other materials.

Egg Crate Foam

Mattress toppers made of the egg crate foam are the cheapest option available. They are very lightweight and easy to transport. They also provide good cushion, but may not be durable and great for back support.

Just like memory foam, egg crate foam has some off-gassing smell and can retain body heat and sleep hot, especially during the summer months.


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