Best mattress toppers – the top mattress protectors for better comfort and sleep

We've tested and reviewed the best mattress toppers for adding an extra layer of comfort and protection to your bed

Toppers are a great option if your current sleeping experience is less Sleeping Beauty and more The Princess and the Pea. A mattress topper can vastly improve an uncomfortable mattress – but which one is best for you?

There are plenty on the market, so we’ve spent our nights testing them out to give you this definitive list of best mattress toppers. Read on, and you’ll also discover how to pick the perfect mattress topper for you. Sweet dreams!

Remember, if you’re in the market for something new for your home, read our buying guides

Best mattress toppers

1. Eve Memory Foam Topper – best memory foam mattress topper (and all-round mattress improver)

best-mattress-toppers-1 Eve topper

If you’ve heard others raving about the virtues of memory foam but you’re not sure it’s for you, this is a great introduction. If you want the benefits that memory foam can bring without forking out for a new mattress, this is (while not cheap) a great value buy. This was not the easiest to manoeuvre of the toppers we tested. However, it provided one of the most comfortable night’s sleep we’ve had on our less-than-youthful mattress in some time.

Arriving boxed, once released from its vacuumed plastic cover it quickly puffed up to its full 5cm height. The initial ‘chemical’ smell often emitted by some memory foam mattresses was hardly there. Any smell evaporated very quickly. The mattress topper doesn’t have elastic corner straps but we found the non-slip back kept it firmly in place.

This mattress topper is soft but at the same time supportive, particularly good when one of you prefers a firmer sleep than the other. Its hypoallergenic cover unzips so you can take it off and pop in the wash, too. We also liked the idea of the free delivery, 30 day trial and return. We have to wonder how many of these mattress toppers actually go back!

Ideal Home’s rating: 5 out of 5 stars 

Buy now: Eve Memory Foam mattress double topper, £179.99, House of Fraser 

2. Soak & Sleep Double Luxury Wool mattress topper – best mattress topper for temperature regulation

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If you find that you and your partner have greatly differing body temperatures, this mattress topper might be for you. Super slim and lovely to the touch, this quality topper is filled with wool. This helps to cool down hot sleepers at the same time as warming up those who like it hot. The elasticated straps were robust enough to hold the mattress in place. This was a feat considering one of the testers – we’re not saying which – is a fidgety sleeper.

Thinner than some mattress toppers we tested, its unbleached cotton outer felt lovely under the sheet. The Michell wool filling definitely did its job of wicking away moisture, making for a much more comfortable night. We loved the fact that the whole thing is washable at 30 degrees C. As it’s not too bulky, we felt sure it would fit in our 9kg washing machine without too much trouble. The makers do recommend you get it washed professionally, though, and we felt it would be worth a trip to the launderette to keep this at its best.

Ideal Home’s rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars 

Buy now: Soak & Sleep Luxury Wool mattress topper, £105, Amazon

3. Silentnight Air Max – best mattress topper for support

best-mattress-toppers-3 Silentnight AirMax

If your mattress is just a little hard, then this is a great addition to the bed. It’s particularly useful if you find yourself overheating during the night. Its a very light mattress topper but don’t let that fool you into thinking it’s insubstantial. The filling is kept even by a waved panel stitch and it has elastic straps to secure in firmly in the right place. Plus, it’s machine washable.

We found it not only added the required level of softness but it also helped us keep cool on warmer nights and toasty on cold evenings. This is probably helped by the ‘Airmesh’ side panel, which helps to increase circulation around you while you sleep. A microfibre outer is lovely and soft to the touch and the polyester filling has a dual layer, which provides ‘air pockets’. Practically, this meant that, although not the deepest of toppers we tried, it was one of the most comfortable.

Ideal Home’s rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars 

Buy now: Silentnight Air Max, £38, Amazon

4. Sealy Select Response mattress topper – best budget mattress topper

best-mattress-toppers-4 Sealy

This is an excellent value mattress topper and is a particularly good choice for those with asthma or, like us, allergies. This is because it’s both hypoallergenic and dust mite-resistant. Just over 70 pockets (on the double) are filled with springy DuPont™ Serica® fibres, which are designed to respond to body temperature. That means that sleeping conditions remain just right, all night long.

Easy to unpack and fit, the straps held it secure. This mattress topper was a nice addition to a medium firm mattress, adding a layer of protection as well as comfort. There was no sign of recurring allergies, which in turn led to a relatively snore-free night. The whole thing is machine washable at 40 degrees C, which is great. Having said that, it might take a bit of persuasion to get this topper into smaller-drum machines.

Ideal Home’s rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars 

Buy Now:  Sealy Select Response mattress topper, £31, Amazon

5. Silentnight Duck Feather and Down topper – best mattress topper for a touch of natural luxury

best-mattress-toppers-5 Silentnight DuckFeather

You really can’t beat natural feathers in a mattress topper for adding a touch of decadence to your bedtime experience. Duck and goose feather and down toppers can vary dramatically in price and mix of filling – the down is the softer of the two. As with duvets, a topper with a higher down content is usually more expensive.

If you don’t mind having more feathers than down, then this is the ‘Champagne taste on a lemonade budget’ mattress topper for you. Generously filled with a mix of 95% duck feather and 5% down, it is deep, squishy and feels really quite indulgent. Slightly compressed from packing, all it needed was a shake to liven up the feathers before being attached to the bed using the elastic straps.

We prefer a firmer mattress and while this was deep enough to sink into, it didn’t make the bed too soft. We liked the fact that the cotton outer cover is washable, too.

Ideal Home’s rating: 4 out of 5 stars 

Buy Now: Silentnight Duck Feather and Down topper, £80, Amazon

6. Slumberdown Deluxe All Season mattress topper – best mattress topper for all-year-round comfort

best-mattress-toppers-6 Slumberdown

We loved the reversible nature of this mattress topper. On one side there’s a cool microfibre covering that is best for using through the warmer summer months. Then, come winter, all you need to do is flip it over and the white plush fleece reverse will provide added warmth through the colder nights. The filling is pretty soft, and is sown into ‘cells’ that help to prevent it moving about or bunching.

This mattress topper is gently cushioning while not adding too much bulk, at 2.5cm thick. Although we didn’t feel it added a huge amount of support to our sleep, it helped provide a much-needed layer of comfort to an older mattress. It has the usual straps and is machine washable. You can tumble dry it too – great if you’re using a single size on a toddler’s bed where accidents might occur.

Ideal Home’s rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars 

Buy Now: Slumberdown Deluxe All Season Mattress topper, £38, Amazon

7. Belledorm Silk mattress topper – best cooling mattress topper

best-mattress-toppers-7 Wayfair

Silk isn’t a bedtime favourite for nothing. Sensual to lie between, silk sheets can give a superior sleep experience. That applies to mattress toppers, too. Silk can be good for you, too. Here’s the science bit – silk contains a natural protein called sericin, which not only helps to repel dust mites, it is also highly resistant to mould and mildew. It’s naturally hypoallergenic so can be beneficial for those suffering from eczema or sensitive skin conditions.

A combination of 20% Mulberry silk and 80% polyester cell filling means that this topper is not too heavy, with a medium firmness that provides plenty of bounce back. The soft cotton outer and plumpness definitely has a very luxurious feel and robust elastic straps help to keep it in place. That said, we’re sure we slept less restlessly, probably in no small part due silk’s natural ability to absorb moisture. This helped to keep us cool and comfortable while we slept.

Ideal Home’s rating: 4 out of 5 stars 

Buy Now: Belledorm Silk mattress topper £37, Amazon

Why do I need mattress topper?

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Image credit: Dan Duchars

More than just a protective layer on the bed, mattress toppers can perform a number of functions. They’re great if you’re renting a furnished flat, for instance, and the mattress provided doesn’t provide you with the comfort and rest you need. Adding a soft layer can quickly and, relatively cheaply, turn a rock hard mattress into an altogether more comfy one.

It might be that your once-comfortable mattress doesn’t quite suit your needs any more, you just can’t afford a new mattress right now, or you are deferring the pleasure until you move. Whichever way, a mattress topper will help you sleep easy. If your mattress is lumpy or sagging the middle, however, a topper will make little difference.

How much should I spend on a mattress topper?

Prices range from £20 for thinner polyester hollowfibre mattress toppers – but they won’t necessarily provide you with the extra comfort you need. The price you pay will depend on which kind of filling you opt for, with man-made fibres generally more affordable than natural materials. Whether you want specific design features such as anti-allergy or temperature controlling will also affect the price.

Expect to spend around £30-40 for a good quality standard hollowfibre topper and up to £150-£200 for a decent memory foam or quality duck-down one.

How will a mattress topper help me get a better night’s sleep?

Toppers are a useful temporary fix if your sleeping habits change – from sleeping in a different position when pregnant or if you have an injury, for instance. They provide an extra layer of softness or support. They can also help make sleeping more comfortable for allergy sufferers. Many mattress toppers are now hypoallergenic or covered and filled with materials such as silk, which dust mites and bugs loathe.

Mattress toppers can also help keep you warm in the winter or cool in the Summer – particularly useful if heat regulation is an issue. If you find you don’t need if anymore, a mattress topper is ideal for improving the comfort of that old guest bed.

What are the main features of mattress toppers?

Mattress toppers come in traditional bed sizes (usually from single to super king) with a wide variety of depths and outer materials and fillings. Adding a layer of comfort is the main criteria but beyond that how can you choose your mattress topper?

If you have allergies, a silk or duck-down topper might be best for you. Mattress toppers that help to regulate your temperature are great, particularly if you differ from your partner.

What else should I look for in a mattress topper?

Look for mattress toppers that can be popped in the machine at 40˚C, or at least have removable outer covers. Elastic corner straps or a slip resistant base will keep it from moving around. This is particularly helpful if you’re a restless sleeper as it means you won’t have to reposition your mattress topper every night before you go to bed.

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