Have you ever purchased a mattress that eventually turned out to be firmer than expected, but missed your return window and ended up stuck with it? Has your mattress lost its fluffiness and you feel like you’d want to postpone buying a new one because it’s not the time for a new investment just yet? There are chances that a mattress topper can help you in such a situation.
A good, thick memory foam mattress topper is basically like adding another layer on top of your existing mattress. Naturally, these toppers can be made from different materials, each one with its ups and downs. When you know the properties of each possible material that can be used to make a mattress topper, you can also prioritize them to see which one would suit you best:
- Latex is always a favorite, because it gives the bed a nice and bouncy feeling, while also facilitating movement (both when you’re looking to switch from one sleeping position to another, as well as when you’re trying to get in and out of bed). Latex is also one of the most durable materials out there, so if these characteristics interest you, then a latex topper will surely be the right choice in your particular case.
- Memory foam toppers are a customer favorite, and people who already own a memory foam mattress will understand why without any further explanations required. Foam is a soft material and one that is known for having superior contouring properties. One of the reasons why people love memory foam so much is because the material uses the heat of the sleeper’s body to contour around the curves, basically creating a “personalized” spot for your body to rest comfortably in for many nights to come. Mattress toppers that are made from the foam will basically add another soft layer on top of the bed, but if you know you’re a hot sleeper, look for a topper with some cooling measure, like maybe a gel-infused memory foam fill.
- You can also find toppers that are made with natural down but take note that these can be quite expensive. While down has a natural fluffiness to it, you will most likely find yourself in a position where you need to fluff the topper frequently because it adds the illusion of thickness without actually being supportive. So, what is the best memory foam mattress topper thickness? Read on!
- There are also other choices of materials when it comes to mattress toppers. Cotton toppers are also pretty popular, but they are not as durable as other choices on the market. You can also find more “unusual” materials used to make mattress toppers, like alpaca fibers or wool.
When you’re on the market looking to buy a mattress topper, there is one thing that you have to know from the get-go: what thickness you should opt for. The best memory foam mattress topper thickness depends on a few things. The basic rule is this: the thicker the topper is, the most cushioning it can provide. While it might sound tempting, don’t just go out and buy the thickest mattress topper that you can buy.
Since the topper is basically one additional layer on top of the mattress, you should keep in mind that most of the upper layers in a good mattress has one or two inches in height, which means that a two-inch topper should be a wise choice in the majority of cases. Of course, it also depends on how much you want to soften your bed. If you feel that your mattress is way too firm compared to your comfort level, you should consider buying a thicker one. For other scenarios, a two-inch mattress topper is enough.
For instance, one category of sleepers that could benefit from a topper thicker than two inches is represented by people who weigh more than 250 pounds. Keep in mind that the thickness of the topper will also influence the thickness of the entire bed, which could cause alteration in how the materials and layers inside the mattress are triggered underneath the weight of your body.
As you can see, the best thickness for a memory foam mattress topper depends mostly on you, so it is wise for you to invest money in a fitted sheet either way. There are high chances of the topper sliding off the surface of the bed, and a fitted sheet can help hold the entire bed in place.
You may want to read: Best Thickness for a Memory Foam Mattress Topper?
The thickness of the topper isn’t the only thing that’s important, but also its weight. Consider that a great of mattress toppers will require periodical fluff and rotate, and this could put some extra strain on you if you’re topper isn’t lightweight or if you lack the physical strength to do so. If you want something light, you should definitely opt for a cotton topper. Latex is the heaviest option of all, and memory foam can also be quite heavy as well, but that depends on the density of the memory foam used.
But when you’re paying attention to the weight of a topper, you can’t disregard your own weight either. That’s because the thickness of a topper can also determine how easy people of a certain weight can move around, as well as how much cushioning they will benefit from.
When you’re looking at a mattress topper with two inches of thickness, know that it can provide cushioning for light people, but those who weigh over 165 pounds for women and 185 pounds for men will need a thicker topper, preferably a three-inch one. Furthermore, people who have over 250 pounds in weight should opt for a mattress topper of four inches.
A two-inch mattress topper is enough, but only in a limited number of scenarios. Your weight plays a very important role in determining the thickness of your future topper, but don’t disregard important aspects, such as the materials and construction.
Before buying a new topper, carefully look at the construction and materials so that you can determine if said topper has the qualities and benefits you’re looking to obtain. Also remember that when you exceed a certain weight threshold, you want to look for thicker mattress toppers.
Photo credit: Andrey_Popov/Shutterstock
Frequently Asked Questions
Do you put a sheet on a mattress topper?
Just like a regular mattress, a mattress topper needs a sheet. In fact, it’s best to use a fitted sheet that covers the mattress topper and the mattress all in one unit. In this way, the sheet will hold the topper in place and stop it from sliding around. And like the function of sheets in general, it will keep the topper clean and feel good against your skin.
Is a two-inch mattress topper good for back pain?
The best mattress topper for back pain should conform closely to your body to correctly align your spine and provide relief to the pressure points. Finding the right quality mattress topper for you that will provide relief when you’re sleeping and can help keep your spine in proper alignment will depend on a number of factors, including how you sleep (side, stomach or back) and your weight. Heavier side and back sleepers will want to look for a three-inch topper, because this will create the most pressure relief. If you're a lightweight back or side sleeper, a two-inch topper could work well. In terms of the best material to help with back pain, memory foam and latex are ideal for pressure relief because they conform to the body’s curves without sagging. Look for high-quality materials, like American Talalay latex and open-cell foam.
Is a mattress protector the same as a mattress topper?
Some people confuse the two terms and think a mattress protector and a mattress topper are the same, but they are not. In fact, they are very different, and perform entirely different functions. A mattress protector is a thin layer of material that you put over your mattress. Although it can add a thin layer of cushioning, that isn’t its prime function. A mattress protector is used to prevent moisture, bacteria and dust mites from penetrating into your mattress. On the other hand, a mattress topper is a thick layer of two to four inches that adds a layer of comfort and protection, allowing you to change the feel of a too-hard or a too soft mattress without having to purchase a whole new mattress.
Can a mattress topper be used on a sofa bed?
A sofa bed is a versatile piece of furniture that is used to sit on and then can pull out to sleep on. Most sofa beds tend to have thin mattresses that are half the thickness of a regular mattress, which can cause the springs to protrude through the mattress over time. Using a mattress topper will cover the lumps and indentations formed on the mattress after long-term use and provide a firm and supportive surface and a more comfortable night’s sleep. However, a mattress topper needs to be stored away when not in use, so keep this in mind when choosing one. Memory foam mattress toppers store better rolled than folded and a two-inch topper will be easier to fold than anything thicker.