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Best Memory Foam Mattress Toppers – Top Picks and Buyer’s Guide

Written by Keith Cushner

Quick Overview

Mattress toppers are individual layers of bedding material that are added to a bed’s sleep surface to adjust the firmness and provide extra cushioning. Many people use toppers if their mattress feels too firm, or if their mattress has developed indentations due to age-related wear and tear.

Toppers are also suitable for sleepers who find their bed isn’t tall or thick enough. Toppers sold today come in sizes that correspond with normal mattress dimensions; they may rest freely on top of the bed, be tucked under a topsheet, or be attached to the corners of the bed using built-in elastic loops.

Memory foam is one of the most popular topper materials because it conforms closely to the sleeper’s body without sagging excessively. Close conforming can help align the spine and alleviate pressure points in the neck, shoulders, lower back, and other sensitive areas of the body.

Memory foam also absorbs and isolates motion transfer very well and produces no noise, making it suitable for couples. Gel-infused memory foam is often a good option for those who find that standard memory foam sleeps too hot.

Read on to learn more about memory foam toppers, including average prices and tips for first-time buyers. Below you’ll find our picks for the best memory foam toppers sold today. Our choices are based on verified customer and owner experiences, as well as intensive product research and analysis.

Best Memory Foam Toppers

The Best Memory Foam Toppers – Reviewed

Best OverallSaatva Topper

Best Overall – Saatva Topper

Highlights

  • 1.5" high-density foam
  • Organic cotton shell
  • Comes with four anchor bands
  • Fits seamlessly over most mattresses
  • 120-Night Trial
The Saatva Topper is available to Our readers at the lowest price
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Best OverallSaatva Topper

saatva.com

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The Saatva Topper offers a thoughtful design and peerless level of comfort. The topper consists of a solid block of 1.5″ high-density memory foam that’s encased in a cooling organic cotton shell. The topper evenly distributes body weight, instantly providing pressure relief.

Saatva’s foam contours to your body, offering optimal support where you need it most. Additionally, the breathable cotton layer helps to regulate your body temperature. The four anchor bands help the topper fit snugly over your mattress and extend the topper’s life.

The Saatva Topper is designed to fit seamlessly on top of most mattresses, so you don’t have to worry about your bedding looking awkward and lumpy after putting it over your mattress topper. On a brand new mattress, the topper lets you sleep comfortably during the “break-in” period. If used on an older mattress, Saatva’s mattress topper will breathe new life into it.

The Saatva Topper comes with a 120-night trial. Try it out and if you don’t like it, simply send it back for a full refund.

Good for:

  • Those who sleep hot or have trouble regulating their body temperature.
  • Shoppers who want to break in a new bed, but also want to ensure comfort at night.
  • Heavier sleepers in need of extra support.
  • Anyone with an uncomfortable mattress who can’t buy a new one at the moment.

Best ValueBrooklyn Bedding Gel Swirl Memory Foam Topper

Best Value – Brooklyn Bedding Gel Swirl Memory Foam Topper

Highlights

  • Plush memory foam
  • Cooling gel infusion
  • 2- and 3-inch options
  • 30-day return policy
  • Below-average price-point
The Brooklyn Bedding Topper is available to our readers at the lowest price
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Best ValueBrooklyn Bedding Gel Swirl Memory Foam Topper

mattresstopper.com

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Brooklyn Bedding offers a wide array of toppers with different materials and performance features, but the Gel Swirl Memory Foam Topper is one of its most affordable options.

The topper is made with memory foam that conforms closely to your body and cradles areas that are prone to pressure buildup. Shoppers can choose between a 2-inch and 3-inch option. The thinner option has a medium (5) feel, while the thicker topper provides a medium soft (4) feel for those who prefer deeper cushioning. Both profiles are on the plusher side, making this an excellent choice for side sleepers who need a surface that cushions their shoulders and hips at night.

If you enjoy the feel of foam but find that it runs too hot, this topper is infused with a cooling gel to neutralize some of the heat retention.

Brooklyn Bedding offers a 30-day return policy with its toppers, as well as a 3-year warranty. Customers receive free shipping.

Good for:

  • People who sleep hot on traditional memory foam
  • Side sleepers who need pressure relief
  • Couples seeking a topper with good motion isolation
  • Those who enjoy plush surfaces

Best LuxuryBirch Organic Mattress Topper

Best Luxury – Birch Organic Mattress Topper

Highlights

  • Natural cooling properties
  • Talalay latex with wool and cotton layers
  • 3-inch profile
  • Medium (5) feel
  • 100-night sleep trial
The Birch Topper is available to our readers at the lowest price
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Best LuxuryBirch Organic Mattress Topper

birchliving.com

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The Birch Organic Mattress Topper is a latex topper padded with cushioned layers for superior comfort. It is 3 inches thick and has a medium (5) feel.

The topper begins with a layer of quilted organic cotton that is naturally breathable and feels soft against the skin. Beneath is a layer of organic wool that acts as a fire retardant and provides gentle cushioning for the body. Like cotton, wool is known for its breathability and helps keep the surface of the topper cool and comfortable.

Next is a layer of organic Talalay latex that balances contouring and support. Side and back sleepers should benefit from this topper, since these sleep positions need cradling for the hips, shoulders, and spine, while also requiring support to keep the lower back from sinking into the bed. Latex is naturally breathable, further enhancing this topper’s cooling properties.

Birch toppers come with a 100-night sleep trial and 10-year warranty. The topper ships for free to all 50 states.

Good for:

  • Hot sleepers
  • Side and back sleepers
  • Anyone seeking a balance of support and contouring

Most ComfortableLayla Topper

Most Comfortable – Layla Topper

Highlights

  • 'Medium Soft'
  • Copper-infused memory foam
  • 120-night trial and 5-year warranty
  • Cool, comfortable, and supportive
The Layla Topper is available to Our readers at the lowest price
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Most ComfortableLayla Topper

laylasleep.com

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The Layla Topper is a 2-inch topper model constructed from copper-infused memory foam. It’s our former editor’s pick, and we’re still big fans of this mattress topper. The Layla Topper is considered ‘Medium Soft,’ and will significantly decrease the firmness of any mattress surface.

The Layla Topper conforms closely to alleviate aches and pains throughout the body. The copper element promotes bloodflow in sleepers, making this topper a great choice for people with poor circulation. Additionally, the copper – along with the cooling gel-infused cover – keeps the topper temperature-neutral for most.

Other benefits of the Layla Topper include exceptional motion isolation and no noise. Its price-point is somewhat high, making the topper a good pick for shoppers with larger budgets. Layla offers free shipping anywhere in the contiguous U.S. The Layla Topper is backed by a 120-night sleep trial and a five-year warranty, both of which are longer than average for toppers.

Good for:

  • Every type of sleeper (side, back, stomach, combination)
  • Sleepers in the light and average weight groups
  • Those who tend to sleep hot
  • Sleepers with poor circulation

Best CoolingGhostBed Memory Foam Topper

Best Cooling – GhostBed Memory Foam Topper

Highlights

  • Memory foam infused with cooling gel
  • 3-inch profile
  • Waterproof cooling cover
  • Zoned for enhanced support and contouring
  • 5-year warranty
The GhostBed Topper is available to our readers at the lowest price
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Best CoolingGhostBed Memory Foam Topper

ghostbed.com

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The GhostBed Memory Foam Topper is an all-foam topper that is designed to reduce the heat retention that is typically associated with foam. It caters to people who are prone to overheating on foam surfaces.

The topper has a 3-inch profile and is encased in a waterproof cover made of proprietary Ghost Ice fabric. The fabric feels cool to the touch, while the foam is infused with a cooling gel that helps draw heat away from the body. Sleepers secure the topper to the bed by pulling the deep-pocket cover over the entire topper and bed.

The topper is designed with five zones that provide varying levels of support and pressure relief, with enhanced contouring for areas of the body that are more susceptible to pressure buildup.

GhostBed ships free within the contiguous U.S. The topper is non-refundable but it is backed by a 5-year warranty.

Good for:

  • Side sleepers
  • Hot sleepers seeking a foam topper with cooling features
  • People who experience pressure buildup at night
  • Shoppers looking for a waterproof cover

Buying Guide – How to Shop for a Memory Foam Topper

Memory foam mattress toppers are a smart purchase. If you own an older mattress they’re a great way to revitalize it, offering a firmness adjustment without having to spend money on a brand new bed. Or, if you recently bought a new mattress, these toppers will let you sleep comfortably during the “breaking in” period. In this guide, you’ll learn about how memory foam mattress toppers work and some important considerations for buying them.

What is a Memory Foam Mattress Topper?

There are other types of bedding products and materials you’ll want to avoid confusing with memory foam mattress toppers. For instance, if you’re not aware of memory foam’s unique properties, you might confuse it with another material, such as latex. Below we’ll explain the unique properties of memory foam mattress toppers.

Toppers vs. Mattress Pads and Protectors

While shopping for your mattress topper, be sure to distinguish it from mattress pads and protectors. They all have a few similar properties, but each serves a specific purpose.

  • Mattress topper: Mattress toppers are cushioning layers that get placed on top of a mattress in an effort to provide extra softness and comfort. With a firmer topper, some offer increased support.
  • Mattress pad: While some pads are quilted for comfort, their primary purpose is shielding the mattress from allergens, dust mites, bacteria, and other contaminants. They’re usually up to an inch thick, but are almost never as thick or cushioned as a mattress topper.
  • Mattress protector:Protectors are similar to pads in that they act as a barrier between the mattress and many contaminants like allergens and dust mites. However, mattress protectors also tend to be waterproof to shield the mattress from urine, sweat, and other stains.

What Is Memory Foam?

Memory foam is the more common name for a material called viscoelastic polyurethane foam. Developed by NASA researchers in the 1960s, memory foam is known for its ability to absorb body heat and soften, allowing it to fully conform to your unique physical impression.

Once memory foam cools, it soon returns to its original form; the substance doesn’t hold onto any previous indentation. This unique feature allows memory foam to help alleviate aches and pains as well as effectively ease tension in the hips, lower back, shoulders, and neck.

Common Memory Foam Topper Designs and Characteristics

In addition to distinguishing memory foam toppers from other bedding products, it’s important to understand common design choices and characteristics. In this section, we’ll talk about common traits that will better help you decide which type of memory foam topper is right for you.

Material

Memory foam’s heat absorption abilities can cause the material to feel excessively hot. For this reason, it’s common to combine the foam with a cooling substance. Some more popular choices include:

  • Gel: While memory foam functions by absorbing heat, liquid gel is a substance that evenly distributes heat, making the mattress topper to feel much cooler than it would if it were just made of memory foam.
  • Bamboo: Bamboo is a popular cooling material for bedding materials because the substance is much more cooling than cotton.
  • Graphite: Graphite has long been used to cool down high-heat products, such as PCs. Because of its ability to cool exceedingly hot applications, graphite is often combined with memory foam to allow for an efficiently cool sleep experience.
  • Copper: This metal is one of the most efficient heat conductors available. When infused in a memory foam topper, copper easily draws excess heat away from the body. Copper also kills bacteria and helps offer firmer support than most other materials infused into memory foam.

Shape

Shape is an important a quality for mattress toppers. The shape can affect how well the topper stays in place and subsequently impact heat absorption and how well the topper conforms to the body. Certain toppers are flat and square, while others are have a design similar to egg-crate polyfoam toppers.

Thickness

Most memory foam toppers sold today tend to be between one and four inches thick. If you’re using a mattress topper in place of an actual mattress, such as during a camping trip, you might prefer a thicker topper. Thickness might also come into play if your covering an older mattress with less support instead of a newer, more springy mattress.

Firmness

With mattress toppers, their firmness level is directly tied to thickness. A thinner topper will tend to offer a medium level of firmness, and will best serve heavy bodied sleepers who need the additional support. They’re also best for side and stomach sleepers. Meanwhile, softer, more plush mattress toppers are ideal if you’re a back sleeper.

Foam Density

A topper’s density refers to its overall weight, which gets measured in pounds per square foot (or PCF). Memory foam toppers tend to be between a low-density 4 PCF and high-density range of 5.0 PCF or greater. Low-density memory foam is comfortable enough for most sleepers regardless of their weight.

Medium-density foam is most comfortable for sleepers who weigh between 130 and 230 pounds. High-density foam tends to cause discomfort for sleepers who weigh less than 130 pounds or more than 230 pounds.

Pros and Cons of Using a Memory Foam Topper

Benefits of using a memory foam topper include the following:

  • Conforming and Pressure Relief: Memory foam is a popular material for toppers because its conforming properties can help create a supportive sleep surface that aligns the spine and alleviates pressure in sensitive areas along the body, including the neck, shoulders, lower back, and hips.
  • Durability: Most memory foam toppers will perform for at least three or four years before they begin to deteriorate. Thicker and higher-density toppers tend to outlast thinner and lower-density models.
  • Motion Isolation: Memory foam toppers absorb motion whenever someone shifts positions or gets into or out of bed, and isolates this motion to certain areas of the mattress. This quality is beneficial for couples, since it can cut down on nighttime disruptions.
  • No Noise: Memory foam is virtually silent when bearing weight.
  • Dual Firmness Potential: Memory foam toppers may be useful for couples with different firmness preferences, particularly if one person is satisfied with the feel of their current mattress and the other is not.

Drawbacks of using a memory foam topper include the following:

  • Sleeping Hot: Memory foam retains high levels of body heat, which can cause the topper to sleep hot. This may be problematic for people who naturally sleep hot on their own.
  • Odor Potential: Memory foam toppers are associated with higher-than-average levels of off-gassing, or unpleasant smells emitted by the foam when new. These smells may dissipate after a few days, but some toppers have persistent odors that do not decrease with time.
  • Ease of Movement: Because memory foam sinks and conforms closely beneath sleeper’s bodies, it can be difficult for individuals to move on these toppers unless they are relatively thin and have a lower density.
  • Lack of Responsiveness: Thicker and higher-density memory foam toppers are slow to respond, and may not be as good for sex as other topper types. Thinner and lower-density memory foam toppers may be more suitable for sex.
  • Price: Most memory foam toppers are relatively expensive. The average model costs between $150 and $250, but some cost $300 or more.

Who Should Use a Memory Foam Topper?

A memory foam topper may be suitable for the following types of sleepers:

  • People who sleep on their side or back. Toppers that are two to three inches thick and have a density between 3.5 and 5 PCF are considered ideal for these positions.
  • People who weigh more than 130 pounds. Most prefer mattresses that are two to three inches thick. People with average weights (130 to 230 pounds) tend to be most comfortable on memory foam with a density of 3 to 4 PCF, while those who weigh more than 230 pounds typically prefer densities of 4 PCF or higher.
  • People who awaken easily due to disturbances, since memory foam toppers isolate motion to certain areas of the bed and produce little to no noise.
  • People with neck, shoulder, and back pressure. Memory foam conforms closely to help align the spine and alleviate pressure points in these sensitive areas.

On the other hand, memory foam toppers are generally not suitable for the following sleepers:

  • People who sleep on their stomach, although they may feel comfortable and supported on toppers that are less than two inches thick and have a density of less than 3 PCF.
  • People who weigh less than 130 pounds. Lighter sleepers often do not weigh enough to experience full conforming on thicker and/or higher-density memory foam toppers, but they may feel comfortable on models that are less than two inches thick and have a density of less than 3 PCF.
  • People who are sensitive to smell, since memory foam may produce unpleasant, long-lasting off-gassing odors.

How Much Does a Memory Foam Topper Cost?

The average memory foam mattress topper costs between $150 and $250, making them slightly more expensive than average. The graph below compares average price-points for the six most common mattress topper types.

Memory Foam Topper Customer Ratings

There are many types of memory foam toppers thanks to the wide variety of materials and designs used to make them. Be sure to consider your own comfort needs when comparing one type of memory foam mattress topper to another to have the best results while shopping.

Other Types of Mattress Toppers

While memory foam is one of the most common topper materials, there are a variety of different types of mattress toppers on the market, read below for a short description of a few.

Convoluted Polyfoam

Convoluted polyfoam toppers are made of polyfoam shaped with ridges along the surface, forming an ‘eggshell’ shape. Like memory foam, these toppers conform to the body to relieve pressure and isolate motion very well.

Due to their economic design, these toppers are a lot cheaper than memory foam toppers. This comes at the sacrifice of durability, density, and overall quality, however. This makes convoluted polyfoam a budget topper option.

Latex

Latex, a luxury topper option, performs well across the board. Latex toppers don’t conform quite as closely as memory foam, but they still offer pretty significant pressure relief. Unlike memory foam, latex doesn’t trap a ton of body heat, making it great for cool sleepers. Additionally, it’s fairly responsive, making it easy to move around on and have sex on (this can be an issue with memory foam).

Feather

Feather toppers provide a ‘plus’ luxurious feel for your mattress. These toppers are often made with duck and goose feathers. While they don’t necessarily add to the pressure relieving properties of a bed, many people find these toppers extremely comfortable.

Fiber

Fiber toppers are an alternative to feather toppers, providing a similar feel without actually using animal feathers. This is ideal for those with allergies or issues with animal products. Further, fiber toppers come at a lower price point, and many people can’t tell the difference.

Wool

Wool is a popular mattress topper material due to its soft and cosy feel and year-round temperature neutrality. Wool naturally wicks away moisture to keep from overheating, but also provides great insulation to keep you warm. While it doesn’t offer too much in the way of pressure relief, the soft feel will add a layer of softness to your mattress.

Additional Resources

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