A mattress topper may be just the ticket for you to get a good night's sleep without doing too much damage to your budget. You can select toppers that give cushioning and support. Down, cotton and wool do more for the cushioning aspect of a bed while latex and memory foam can give cushioning and support. Your needs and budget will help guide your purchase.
If you're in the market for a new mattress but aren't willing to invest money towards a mattress right now, a mattress topper may be just what you're looking for. Mattress toppers are placed right on top of your existing mattress and are considerably less expensive than mattresses. Plus, a mattress topper can extend the life of your existing mattress because it acts as a protective cover.
Which Mattress Toppers are Most Popular?Mattress toppers come in down, cotton, wool, latex, and memory foam, but the most popular seem to be the latex and memory foam toppers. Latex and memory foam toppers are too soft a material to be used without a firm, supportive foundation, which is why they work so well with your existing mattress.
Aside from differences in manufacturing and materials, the main difference consumers notice between latex and memory foam toppers is how they feel. Latex is springy and tends to give more, and memory foam is firmer and less springy. Neither of these qualities is better than the other and the "best" is really just what you personally find the most comfortable.
Is a Mattress Topper Right for You?When placed on your existing mattress, a latex or memory foam topper can make a firm mattress softer and a comfortable bed more supportive for a good night's rest. When a topper is placed on a bed that is too soft, however, your mattress will be even softer and more uncomfortable. In those cases, it would be better for you to purchase a new mattress all together.
Foam toppers can give you great benefits, but if your mattress has fundamental problems like dips and compressed areas, a topper won't help you very much because they'll conform to the mattress. In that case, your money would be better spent on a brand new bed instead of a topper.
What Should You Look for in a Latex or Memory Foam Topper?
- Thickness: The thickness of typical latex and memory foam topper ranges from 1" to 4". The thickness that is best for you depends upon your weight and what feels comfortable to you. Generally speaking, 2" and 3" toppers tend to be the best choice for most people. A 2" topper tends to offer support and better sleep for women weighing under 165 lbs. and for men weighing less than 185 lbs. The 3" topper gives more cushioning and offers a bit less support, but seems be work best for men and woman over these weight thresholds. 4" toppers don’t seem to offer any additional benefit and are often viewed as being a waste of money.
- Density: Thickness is not the same as density so don't equate topper thickness with topper density. The density of a topper is determined by how much air is in the latex or foam, and how large or small the foam cells are. As a rule, toppers with a density of 4 lbs. and greater are a good quality foam. Unfortunately, toppers rated at the same density can vary dramatically, especially between domestic and foreign suppliers.
- Which Topper is Right for You?
If possible, don't purchase a topper without trying it out. Even a 15 minute test is better than no test at all. However, if you're looking to buy on-line and a test is not possible, look for manufactures that offer trial periods and good return policies. For additional peace of mind, find a topper with a good warranty and a manufacturer with good customer service ratings.