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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.
The Saatva Topper is our Editor’s Pick because of its 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.
Our runner up is the Layla Topper, a 2″ 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.
Our Pick for the Best Cooling Topper is the Viscosoft Select High Density Mattress Topper, a gel-infused memory foam topper that’s designed to promote air flow and trap as little body heat as possible. This topper is 3” thick and features a ‘Medium’ firmness.
Memory foam is notorious for trapping body heat, making it a natural enemy to those who tend to sleep hot. This Viscosoft topper takes measures to prevent this. The gel infusion within the memory foam introduces a cooler substance into its composition. Further, the foam in this topper is specifically engineered to allow for more airflow.
Featuring dense 3.5 lb foam, this topper conforms closely to your body to relieve pressure points. This high density also makes for a more durable topper. Carrying the common memory foam qualities of great motion isolation and minimal noise, this topper is also a great option for couples who tend to accidentally wake each other up.
At a below average price point, this topper holds excellent value. It also comes with a 60 day sleep trial and a 3-year warranty.
If you want a practical mattress top solution without having to spend too much money, we believe the Lucid Gel Infused Topper is a solid investment. The mattress topper is composed of three pounds of CertiPur-US certified memory foam. It’s free of harmful toxins and does not contain synthetic or natural latex of any kind.
Lucid designed their mattress topper to provide a maximum cooling comfort. The company designed a unique ventilation system for their foam topper using a pattern of evenly sized and spaced ventilation holes, which enhance airflow through the sleep surface.
Additionally, Lucid infused their memory foam mattress topper with gel, a substance known to capture heat and evenly distribute it across the sleep surface.
The Lucid Gel Infused Topper easily conforms to the body, evenly distributing your weight and eliminating pressure points at the shoulders, hips, knees, and feet. Designed using open cell technology, the Lucid mattress topper will quickly bounce back to life after use. Lucid’s mattress topper is backed by a three-year warranty.
The TEMPUR-Topper Supreme represents the perfect alternative to the Tempur-Pedic mattress. This premium mattress topper is 3″ of thick, high-quality foam encased in a removable cover. The cover is washable and resistant to allergens and dust mites.
Tempur-Pedic’s foam topper will conform to your body, letting you enjoy a personalized, relaxing sleep experience. When paired with a traditional spring mattress, the TEMPUR-Topper eases pressure points and offers firm support. It also works great in situations where a mattress isn’t available or ideal, such as on the road in an RV or while out on a camping trip.
Avoid washing the TEMPUR-Topper Supreme directly. Remove the cover and place it in a machine with a cold water setting. Dry the cover using a cool setting or hang it out to air dry. Do not expose the cover or topper to harsh cleaning chemicals. This topper comes with a limited 25-year warranty.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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:
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.
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.
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.
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.
Benefits of using a memory foam topper include the following:
Drawbacks of using a memory foam topper include the following:
A memory foam topper may be suitable for the following types of sleepers:
On the other hand, memory foam toppers are generally not suitable for the following sleepers:
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.
|AVERAGE MEMORY FOAM TOPPER PRICE||$100 TO $250|
|AVERAGE WOOL TOPPER PRICE||$150 TO $300|
|AVERAGE LATEX TOPPER PRICE||$100 TO $400|
|AVERAGE FEATHER TOPPER PRICE||$100 TO $150|
|AVERAGE POLYFOAM TOPPER PRICE||$10 TO $30|
|AVERAGE FIBER TOPPER PRICE||$60 TO $100|
|Criteria||Memory Foam Topper Rating||Explanation|
|Thickness Selection||Very Good to Excellent||Memory foam toppers are available in various thicknesses ranging from one to four inches.|
|Durability||Good to Very Good||Memory foam toppers typically perform for three to four years, which is considered longer-than-average compared to other topper types.|
|Support||Good to Very Good||Memory foam toppers provide above-average support by aligning the spine and targeting pressure points.|
|Conforming Ability||Very Good to Excellent||Conforming is a chief strength of memory foam, according to topper owners.|
|Pain/Pressure Relief||Very Good to Excellent||Most owners experience some pain and pressure relief as a result of using a memory foam topper.|
|Motion Isolation||Very Good to Excellent||Memory foam toppers are highly effective at absorbing and minimizing motion.|
|Noise Potential||Very Good to Excellent||Memory foam toppers produce virtually no noise when compressed, which can help reduce sleep disruptions.|
|Temperature Neutrality||Poor to Fair||Memory foam has a strong tendency to sleep hot, and those who naturally sleep warm or hot may find these toppers uncomfortable.|
|Odor Potential||Poor to Fair||A large number of memory foam toppers produce unpleasant off-gassing smells that may linger for days or weeks — and in some cases, permanently.|
|Sex||Fair to Good||Memory foam offers minimal responsiveness, and these toppers may not be as good for sex as other models.|
|Ease of Moving||Poor to Fair||Memory foam toppers typically weigh 20 to 30 pounds, which may make them difficult to adjust and maneuver during the night.|
|Ease of Cleaning||Poor to Fair||Memory foam toppers typically need to be spot cleaned by hand or dry cleaned, and should never be machine washed.|
|Maintenance||Very Good to Excellent||Most memory foam toppers come in one-piece designs that never need to be fluffed or shaken out.|
|Availability||Very Good to Excellent||Memory foam toppers are widely available in an extensive range of thicknesses and density levels. Most models sold are between two and four inches thick, and have a density of 2.5 to 5 PCF.|
|Average Price Range||$100 to $250||Memory foam toppers are relatively expensive. They cost more than most polyfoam, fiber, and feather toppers, and tend to be slightly less expensive than latex and wool options.|
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.