Why Should You Use A Memory Foam Topper?

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written by sleep expert Lauren Hall

If you’ve ever needed to buy a mattress, you know how overwhelming a process it can be. With dozens of brands, sizes and materials to choose from, you need sparse through the marketing mumbo jumbo and try out different mattresses to see which one is most comfortable for you.

Often times, our options are limited by our budgets and although we try to buy the best mattress we can afford, sometimes our purchases are less than satisfactory.

The mattress that you bought might feel comfortable at first, but eventually, slight wear might make it harder to sleep at night.

Of course, you can’t just chuck out that mattress and get a new one without spending a lot of money. Is there any way to salvage the mattress that you have? The easy answer is yes, you can buy a mattress topper and hopefully add some comfort to your mattress.

What Is A Mattress Topper?

The terms “mattress topper” and “mattress pad” are often used interchangeably when they are in fact two different products. A mattress pad is designed to protect your mattress from wear and tear, helping it last longer.

A mattress topper, however, is designed as an extra layer that adds softness and comfort to your overall mattress. Another term, “mattress protector” is also different from a topper, as it is a thin sheet that protects your mattress from liquid spills and stains.

To reiterate, a mattress topper is generally thicker than a mattress pad and designed to be an additional layer to be put on top of your original mattress.

Mattress toppers add softness and comfort to help provide better spinal support and help you sleep better. There are different types of mattress toppers that are suitable depending on your personal preferences and needs.

In general, you might consider buying a mattress topper if you feel that your mattress, which was once nice and comfy, starts to feel uncomfortable. Over time, the wear and tear on may cause the mattress to flatten out or have an uneven surface.

This can cause chronic back pain issues with prolonged use. Mattress toppers are affordable and cheaper compared to the cost of buying a new mattress and are a good investment to ensure you get a good night’s sleep.

Why Use A Memory Foam Topper?

Mattress toppers can be made with a wide range of materials, each with their own pros and cons. Which type of topper you want to buy comes down to your own sleeping needs and preferences.

Memory foam, which is known to be soft, malleable and comfortable, has become the consumer favorite when it comes to enhancing mattresses. That being said, let’s look at the different materials out there on the market and examine their pros and cons.


Toppers made out of cotton have great ventilation, meaning that keep you cool throughout the night and can even be machine washed for convenience. It is also a good option for those with allergies as it a hypoallergenic material. However, cotton also wears down fast, especially for daily use.


While we think of wool as a thick material to keep us warm during colder months, it’s actually a heat absorbing material, meaning it can keep your body temperature down if you give out a lot of heat.

Wool is also resistant to mites and mold and is very durable, lasting decades. The only downside is that tends to be on the pricey side.


Much like wool, latex is resistant to dust and bed parasites with the added bonus of being extra durable, lasting over 20 years. It is a natural material, which can cause it to look a bit aged on the surface, with possible discoloration and small tears.

This isn’t a problem once you cover the topper with a bed sheet, and it still adds some comfort. It is, however, on the expensive range of the spectrum.


Featherbed toppers have been well-tested to add a general plushy feeling. They are extremely lightweight and soft and are a good choice for those who don’t need to mitigate back pain and just want something soft and comfy.

It’s a good heat-regulating material that will keep you cool in the summer and warm in the winter. 

Note that these feathers are taken from actual geese, so if that’s unethical to you, you can also find some alternative materials that have the exact same feel and function, but without being sourced from animals.

Memory Foam

Memory foam is known to add a layer of comfort that is incomparable to any other material.

It evenly distributes your body weight and responds to heat, making it malleable and easily molds itself to fit your body shape, regardless of your sleeping position. It is known to help alleviate pressure on joints and decrease back pain.

Be wary of allergies or those sensitive to chemical smells as the chemical material in memory foam can produce VOCs (volatile organic compounds) that can be described as a new car smell.

While it’s unclear whether this is bad for your health, it can cause discomfort, although the smell decreases over time.

You can always get around this by buying memory foam that is made of more natural and eco-friendly materials and thus produces no “off-gassing.” As it absorbs heat, you might want to avoid it if you tend to heat up a lot in your sleep and go for the gel-based cooling memory foam options also available.

Conclusion – Should You Use a Memory Foam Topper

As you can see, a memory foam topper is more likely to add a level of comfort to your mattress that will enhance the quality of your sleep.

However, keep in mind that everyone’s sleeping habits and needs are different and it might take some time and research to find the right memory foam topper for you. To help get you started, here’s a list of the year’s best memory foam toppers, to aid your buying decision.

Hopefully, by the end of your search, you’ll be rewarded with a comfortable mattress topper and a well-deserved good night’s sleep!

More Topper Guides

Didn’t quite find the right topper within in this guide? Don’t worry – we have literally covered everything from the best toppers for side sleepers, through to the best toppers for hip pain.

Related Post: Best Memory Foam Mattress Topper [Review]