Mattress Topper Guide

Mattress toppers are coverings placed on top of your bed to make the surface more comfortable to sleep on. They enable you to modify your bed to meet your needs, rather than purchasing a new one. Mattress toppers are available in several types, each filled with a different material that provides separate benefits. In short, mattress toppers can soften a firm mattress or add support to a surface that is too soft. I recently bought one for my 4ft small double mattress; they come in all bed sizes.

Memory Foam

Memory foam conforms to your body shape and adds support for aching joints and muscles and then regains its original shape when you get up. Made from synthetic materials, memory foam toppers can be purchased with hypoallergenic and antibacterial features. Typically, a memory foam topper will come with a cover made of a soft material, like cotton. The cover is removable and machine washable, although the actual topper is not. One drawback to memory foam is that it can have a chemical smell when first purchased. Airing the topper out for a couple of days will eliminate this odour.

Latex Foam

Latex foam is a natural material that is breathable and helps to regulate body temperature better than memory foam. This type of mattress topper is naturally resistant to many allergens and offers similar cushioning to memory foam, but it has less back and neck support. Latex foam contours to the shape of your body and reduces movement and is also antibacterial and resistant to mold and dust mites. Latex foam mattress toppers made entirely from natural latex are biodegradable as well. Less expensive synthetic blends are also available.

Feather and Down

Feather and down toppers do not keep their shape as foam toppers do, but they’re less expensive and still offer a soft sleep surface. A feather topper conforms to your body but without a lot of support, so if you suffer from joint or muscle pain, you may not find this type of mattress topper beneficial. They’re ideal if your mattress is firm so that you receive the soft cushioning of the feathers but still have the support provided by the mattress beneath. Feather and down toppers keep your body cool in the summer and add warmth through the winter. These toppers typically come with a cover to prevent the filling from spilling out. Feathers do not naturally resist dust mites and other allergens, although some manufacturers do offer hypoallergenic options. This type of mattress topper tends to flatten and clump, requiring fluffing periodically.

Wool

Wool mattress toppers are similar to feather toppers in that they’re intended for comfort rather than support. They’re available with a variety of wool blends such as lamb’s wool and alpaca, mixed with synthetic materials. Wool is a natural material resistant to dust mites and mold. It tends to flatten and requires occasional fluffing to hold its shape. Toppers that are filled with a single type of wool tend to flatten more easily than those made of a blend of materials. Wool is also naturally hypoallergenic and absorbs moisture but dries rapidly.