What Is a Mattress Topper?

A mattress topper is a spongy two to four-inch latex, wool, feather, or memory foam layer that you place on top of your mattress.

You can’t wait to get a new mattress, but when you do, it’s not as comfortable as you imagined. It’s too stiff! Throwing away your new mattress is not an option, but at the same time, you’re not willing to sacrifice comfort. That’s where a mattress topper comes in!

On a quest to find a solution for my back pain, I searched for an accessory to make my bed comfier. I didn’t need to invest in another mattress; I just needed to find a good mattress topper.

A mattress topper improves the feel of a mattress, eliminates stiffness, and provides a soft layer that facilitates a good night’s sleep. Mattress toppers come in different shapes and sizes, but what’s right for you? Here’s everything I learned about mattress toppers.

Should You Buy a Mattress Topper?

Sleep experts recommend getting at least 8 hours for optimum productivity and overall well-being. However, a new mattress doesn’t always guarantee restful nights. A mattress topper helps adjust your sleeping surface, making it even more comfortable.

But then I heard about mattress pads and mattress protectors. Here’s a closer look at the differences between them.

Mattress Protector Vs. Mattress Pad Vs. Mattress Topper

There’s an endless list of products you can add to your mattress depending on your needs. So what are a mattress protector's unique features vs. a Mattress pad vs. a Mattress topper?

Mattress Protector

A mattress protector is a bed accessory that resembles your bed sheet, but it’s slightly thicker and has elastic bands on the edges. A mattress protector has a top cotton layer and a waterproof layer to protect the mattress from dust, fluids, and other impurities.

Mattress Pad

A mattress pad is typically made from latex or fiber, is thicker than a mattress protector, thinner than a mattress topper, and has subtle cushioning. Its purpose is to provide extra comfort and support and protect your mattress from allergens, dirt, and debris.

A mattress pad is excellent for people who like the feel of their mattress but want to add another thin layer on top for extra cushioning and protection.

Mattress Topper

If your existing mattress starts sagging, a mattress topper is an affordable accessory you can add to your bed instead of buying a new mattress. If your new mattress feels too stiff, a mattress topper can help improve its comfort.

Purchasing a mattress topper is an all-in-one solution. It combines the features of a mattress protector and pad and is the ideal bed accessory for more support and cozier sleep.

Which Is the Best Mattress Topper? Types of Mattress Toppers



Different mattress toppers are designed to fit specific users’ needs. How do you know what’s best for you? Let’s examine the different types of mattress toppers.

Memory Foam Mattress Toppers

Viscoelastic polyurethane is the actual material used to make memory foam. Memory foam toppers are the best mattress toppers because they provide excellent support during sleep.


  • Enhances the life of your mattress
  • Conforms to your body shape for extra support
  • Pocket-friendly compared to buying a new mattress


  • Higher priced than mattress toppers made from other materials
  • It traps more body heat

If you’re looking for structured support, a memory foam mattress topper is a high-quality item that adds bounce and comfort.

Feather or Down Mattress Topper

This mattress topper is stuffed with soft feathers, otherwise known as down. These are feathers collected from a duck’s or goose's underbelly.

Feather or down mattress toppers are stuffed with feathers, providing a plush feel.


  • Pocket friendly
  • Super soft
  • Has excellent airflow


  • Offers minimal body support
  • Can trigger reactions in allergic/sensitive users

Feather toppers have a luxurious edge. They are excellent for light to medium-weight users because they offer medium support.

Synthetic Latex Foam Mattress Topper

Suppose you’re on a tight budget and can’t buy a memory foam topper. In that case, a synthetic latex foam topper is an excellent alternative with the same benefits as owning a memory foam topper.


  • Offers adequate body support
  • It has a firm yet soft feel
  • Has cooling properties
  • Durable


  • It is slightly pricier than other toppers
  • Not conducive to use during winter

This type of topper doesn’t retain heat, thus ideal for buyers looking for a topper with the cooling properties of natural fiber toppers.

Cotton Mattress Toppers

Cotton is one of the most accommodating natural fibers due to its breathability. A cotton mattress topper keeps you warm on a cold night and cools on an otherwise hot night.

It’s light in weight and doesn’t need extra care and maintenance—an excellent option for lasting comfort.

Wool Mattress Topper

Wool mattress toppers have a sleeping-in-the-clouds effect. They are soft, durable, and anti-microbial. Natural wool retains enough heat to keep you warm on a relatively cold night.


  • Warm
  • Anti-microbial and hypoallergenic
  • Lightweight and soft
  • Durable


  • Has minimal body support
  • It has a funny smell if exposed to moisture

A woolen mattress topper is your best bet if you live in a cold area and want something to add to your bed to keep you warm at night.

Top Benefits of a Mattress Topper


When you struggle with back pain or experience difficulty sleeping, you need something that can solve your issue without costing an arm and a leg. Are you thinking of getting mattress toppers for your beds? Below are the top benefits of mattress toppers.

Improves Comfort

If your old mattress sinks in or the new mattress is too rigid, a mattress topper is an extra layer you can add to your bed to make it more comfortable.

Other Reasons Why You Should Choose a Mattress Topper

Here are other reasons why you need a mattress topper.

Temperature Control

Some people overheat during sleep, whereas for others, it gets chilly. Memory foam toppers are best for users who want to stay warm, while a synthetic latex foam topper is best if you want to keep cool in bed.

Enhances Mattress Durability

A mattress topper is the cushioning you need to avoid sleeping directly on top of your mattress, which enhances the durability of your mattress.

Mattress toppers are made from high-quality materials that make them durable for several years with minimal maintenance.

Hypoallergenic and Antimicrobial

Manufacturers make mattress toppers that are both hypoallergenic and antimicrobial. This is great news for sensitive people or people who suffer from allergies.

If a little bit of dust on your mattress has you sneezing or triggers your sinuses and skin rashes, a mattress topper is an excellent investment to keep reactions in check.

Enhances Hygiene

A mattress topper adds a protective layer to your mattress that keeps dust, pest, and allergens off. Most mattress toppers are also waterproof and dustproof. Installing a mattress topper keeps your bed clean and protects it from bodily liquid stains and drink spills.

May Alleviate Back Pain

Poor sleeping posture is the number one culprit behind spine problems. Instead of undergoing costly procedures and taking pain medication, how about using a mattress topper?

A mattress topper will provide more physical support and reduce back pain and overall discomfort.


If you could choose between buying a new mattress or a mattress topper without spending too much, a mattress topper is an ideal option.

Mattresses have a life span of five years or longer, depending on the type and quality of mattress you get. Suppose your mattress is not past its recommended age/ durability but shows signs of aging. In that case, a mattress topper is an affordable item that can help extend its durability and overall lifespan.

How to Install a Mattress Topper?


It may seem straightforward, but you may be surprised how many people incorrectly use the mattress topper. Below is a step-by-step guide to correctly place a mattress topper.

  • Check if your mattress pad or protector is installed securely, if applicable
  • Spread the mattress topper on top of your bare mattress
  • Align the topper properly to match the corners of your mattress
  • Proceed to lay your other bedding as you usually do

Pull the elastic fasteners attached to the four corners of your topper under your mattress to prevent it from slipping off. Alternatively, install a non-slip pad under the mattress topper to avoid sliding.

Tips On How to Clean a Mattress Topper

Every few weeks, you’ll have to clean your bedding. You probably don’t clean your mattress topper as often as you wash your sheets because it seems like too much work.

It takes longer for your mattress topper to accumulate enough dirt to warrant cleaning. However, cleaning your topper at least four times a year is advisable to avoid the build-up of dirt.

The general rule of thumb is to avoid using a washing machine to clean memory foam and latex toppers to avoid altering their delicate structure. In this case, spot cleaning and hand washing are ideal.

On the other hand, wool and feather mattress toppers can be cleaned and dried in the washer and drier machines.

To clean your mattress topper:

  • Mix one cup of white vinegar with one cup of water and pour the solution into a spray bottle
  • Generously spray the solution on visible stains on the surface of your topper
  • Pour baking soda on the stains and allow them to sit for four to eight hours. The tougher and older the stain, the longer it will take for the baking soda to work its magic
  • Use a damp towel and fresh water to wipe the surface gently
  • Allow the mattress topper to air dry. If in a hurry, you could also use a handheld vacuum cleaner to dry your topper

All mattress toppers have labels that offer directions on cleaning and caring for them. Keep your mattress clean by carefully following directions to avoid damaging your topper during cleaning.

Frequently Asked Questions

Below are questions and answers to common questions about mattress toppers.

1. Do mattress toppers work?

Mattress toppers work for almost everyone. They are the ultimate solution to most comfort and support issues people experience in bed. They regulate firmness and temperature, creating a plush base that’s comfortable to sleep on.

2. Why do I need a mattress topper?

A mattress topper can improve your sleeping conditions. This simple bed accessory makes your bed softer, firmer, cooler, or warmer. A topper can protect your mattress from spills, dust, and allergens.

Whether you need a mattress topper to help with back pain or make your sleeping space more comfortable, you can find one that checks all your boxes.

3. Are mattress toppers worth it?

A mattress topper is a worthwhile investment for your bed. It enhances the durability of your mattress and is a good value.

4. Does a mattress topper go on top or under a mattress pad?

A mattress topper should sit right above your mattress. Any additional accessories like mattress pads and protectors should be placed above your topper.

5. Should I get a mattress topper or a new mattress?

If your mattress has surpassed the recommended 7 to 10 years of service and is visibly dilapidated, you should buy a new one. However, a mattress topper is smart if you want to extend your mattress’s life or take a less expensive route.  

Do You Need a Mattress Topper? Bottom Line

Below are reasons to support investing in a good mattress topper.

  • Firms your mattress if it begins sagging
  • Regulatesthe temperature of your mattress, making it cooler or warmer
  • It can make your bed feel softer
  • It buys you time so you can save up for a new mattress

Ready to transform your bedroom? Check us out for the widest variety of high-quality pocket-friendly bed accessories available.