Mattress covers, also referred to as mattress protectors, have recently made their way into every bed. This discreet, comfortable, and thin addition to your mattress is guaranteed to protect it from any spills and stains, and it couldn’t be easier to wash, dry, and place it back on your bed. Some of the widest variety of both the latest and tried-and-true mattress cover styles can be found and easily compared through online retailers like Amazon. In this article, you’ll be able to pick your next mattress cover from the top five, best-selling, high-quality toppers available on the market.
What is a Mattress Cover?
If you don’t have one, you may be wondering what a mattress cover is and why it’s necessary. A mattress cover or protector wraps tightly around your mattress like a fitted bed sheet. However, it has a thick layer of padding that absorbs any spills before they are able to seep into your actual mattress. This extra layer of protection keeps your mattress safe not only from spills but also regular body oils and sweat. Many who experience frequent dust mite infestations opt for mattress protectors to prevent any dust mites from nearing the bed. By investing in an inexpensive mattress cover, you’re keeping your more expensive mattress safer in the long run. As for materials, mattress covers are typically made of cotton and polyester and are hypoallergenic, so you don’t have to worry about sleep allergies. Their tops may also contain materials like nylon and sometimes memory foam, so even if you don’t have a memory foam mattress, you can create the same feeling without buying a brand new mattress.
Mattress Covers vs. Mattress Pads
Mattress pads and mattress covers may be used interchangeably — but this is technically incorrect. A mattress cover, topper, or protector is different from a mattress pad because mattress covers intend to both protect and provide comfort, while mattress pads are generally purchased simply for comfort. For those with older mattresses who can’t invest in a new one, they might choose to buy a soft mattress pad to mimic the feel of a softer, new mattress. Mattress covers/protectors, on the other hand, provide this same comfort but are also built to protect the mattress against stains and spills, as well as bed bugs, and are waterproof. Mattress pads are also typically heavier than covers due to their heavier fill.
The Mattress Products You Need
It’s entirely up to you which products you want to purchase for your mattress. However, you aren’t limited to just one — a mattress cover can be used together with a mattress pad, and this is recommended for optimal comfort and protection. First, place the mattress protector directly on top of your mattress, then the mattress pad, and then your fitted sheet.
Your Next Mattress Cover: The Top Five
1. Oasky’s Cotton and Down-Alternative Mattress Topper
- Materials: Cotton top and down-alternative fill
- Price: $39.90 to $59.99, depending on size
- Sizes: Available in twin, twin XL, full, queen, king, and California king.
This mattress topper by Oasky’s promises a new cooling and breathable feel to your mattress and uses microfiber and down alternative to conform to the unique shape of your body while you sleep — you’ll never have to worry about a hard mattress again. This cover boasts a 21-inch deep pocket that fits mattresses 8 to 21 inches tall. It was created with convenience and protection in mind — the topper can be machine washed in your own home and fluffs up again after being air dried or low tumble dried.
The product arrives in a sealed vacuum bag. All you have to do upon delivery is open it and spread it open for a few days, giving it time to fluff up. The product is a top-listed Amazon’s choice mattress topper, with over 60,000 reviews and 4.5 stars. The topper features a white cotton fabric and a soft, grid-like pattern that fits comfortably underneath your bedding and ensures durability by “locking” the down-alternative filling in place.Amazon product
2. SafeRest Premium Mattress Protector
- Materials: Cotton terry
- Price: $27.99 to $39.99, depending on size
- Sizes: Available in twin, twin XL, full, queen, king, and California king.
If you want to know what the number one best-selling mattress protector on Amazon is, it’s the SafeRest premium mattress protector collection. This product, with over 200,000 reviews, specifically protects your mattress from everything from dust mites to fluids without sacrificing the comfort of your mattress. It uses a waterproof membrane and absorbent cotton terry top, and unlike some lower-quality mattress covers, it doesn’t have that “crinkling” feel or sound. The product is registered with the FDA as a Class 1 Medical Device.
The topper can be washed and dried at home along with your clothing. It is recommended for those with pets and kids because it is entirely free of fire retardants, PVC’s, phthalates, and other harmful chemicals. When you receive your product, which is tightly enclosed in a plastic case, it is best to first wash it to release the cotton terry protecting fabric and fluff it before placing it on your bed. What makes these toppers high quality is that their special premium fabric absorbs all liquids like sweat and urine but allows air and heat to pass through, thereby regulating your bed’s temperature.Amazon product
3. Utopia Bedding Quilted Mattress Pad
- Materials: Polyester fill, 100% microfiber top
- Price: $18.99 to $23.99, depending on size
- Sizes: Available in twin, twin XL, full, short queen, queen, king, and California king.
If you are searching for a durable, affordable mattress pad for extra comfort, you’re describing the Utopia Bedding quilted mattress pad. It comes in seven different sizes and is made of 100% microfiber, which, although not waterproof, provides maximum comfort. Utopia Bedding promises an all-new sleep experience to bring your older mattress back to life. The white pad uses a diamond stitch quilting for comfort and longevity, and is safe for babies, seniors, and adults alike. The fitted sheet fits mattresses up to 16 inches tall.
The mattress does not absorb moisture and allows cool air to pass through, so you don’t need to be concerned about overheating. It’s easy to maintain — simply throw it in you washer and tumble dry on low. The cover is made of microfiber with a polyester filling, allowing for an affordable product without sacrificing comfort or quality. It fits to your bed with an elastic fitted skirt and the deep pocket ensures that it doesn’t move around.Amazon product
4. Easeland Quilted Mattress Pad
- Materials: Cotton top, down-alternative fill
- Price: $41.56 to $59.49, depending on size
- Sizes: Available in twin, twin XL, full, short queen, queen, super queen, king, California king, and RV king.
This mattress pad, rated the #1 Amazon Best Seller in mattress pads, is available in the widest variety of sizes out there. You can also pick between dark grey and white; color customizations like this aren’t as common with other mattress protector brands. The top is made of 100% cotton for quality and breathability, and the filling mimics the feel of luxurious down with 30 ounces soft down alternative.
The deep-pocket design fits around mattresses up to 21 inches, and wraps around securely with a fitted style. The quilted pattern keeps the down-alternative microfiber filling fluffy and all in one place, so it’s guaranteed to last. You can wash it easily at home on a gentle cycle, so there’s no need to lug it to the dry cleaner’s. Additionally, the high thread count of the cotton top allows the fabric to last and stretch comfortably, making it one of the best mattress topper products out there.Amazon product
5. DMI Waterproof Mattress Protector
- Materials: Noiseless plastic, nylon
- Price: $6.95 to $19.58, depending on size
- Sizes: Available in twin, full, king, queen, and hospital.
This Amazon’s Choice best mattress protector is suitable for all — it truly protects against everything! DMI’s mattress cover is waterproof and hypoallergenic, so it is safe for every member of the family (even pets). You can pick from two different secure styles: the classic elastic fitted pad that wraps around the top and sides of your mattress, or a special zippered mattress encasement that complete encloses your entire mattress — top, bottom, and sides alike.
The plastic pad is noiseless and odorless, so you don’t need to worry about hearing any crinkling when you’re trying to sleep. This mattress protector is one of the most affordable options out there and provides maximum coverage for your mattress from both of its two options (fitted and zippered). It is machine washable at home, and utilizes deep pocket technology to prevent the filling from moving around in the product. If you’ve got DMI’s mattress protector on and there’s a liquid stain on the bed, it definitely won’t seep through to your mattress.Amazon product
What To Look For in a Mattress Cover or Pad
With so many options like the ones above, how would you know which type of mattress topper will best fit your needs? Before making your first (or next) purchase, it’s important to take into account different factors such as size, material, protection, comfort, and convenience.
Unfortunately, not every brand of mattress protector is offered in every bed size. The size you should be looking for in a mattress cover is the same size that you would get for your bed sheet sets (the one you purchased for your fitted sheet is a good reference). Some examples of bed sheet sizes include twin, queen, king, and California king. Be sure to familiarize yourself with the dimensions and size of your mattress so that you can narrow your search more effectively.
Protection or Comfort?
Each mattress protector emphasizes one of these more than the other, depending on the type of product. Do you want a mattress pad, or a mattress protector? Mattress pads are mainly used for comfort and aren’t guaranteed to absorb spills and stains before they reach the mattress underneath. They are typically heavier and more affordable than mattress covers. A mattress cover provides comfort, but it is mainly focused on extending the life of your mattress; it’s like insuring your mattress! A mattress cover will protect it from any spills or stains from urine, body oils, sweat, dirt, and everything else. By making the decision of what your priority is, you’ll find it easier to know just what you’re looking for.
Additionally, you may want to consider if you need a completely waterproof mattress cover. In this case, you should search for covers that are specifically labeled as waterproof, such as DMI’s mattress topper.
Remember not to limit yourself to just one purchase if you don’t want to. If you want maximum comfort and protection, you can purchase both a mattress pad and cover, and place the pad over the cover.
Material: Top and Filling
Mattress covers and pads mainly contain two parts in terms of material: a top and a filling. Most mattress toppers use 100% cotton for their top. Getting a cotton-topped cover is a good decision because it is long lasting, affordable, and also breathable so that it won’t trap heat. Additionally, a memory foam mattress topper may provide comfort for those with back pain. When it comes to the filling, you’ll find even more variety. You can pick from polyester, microfiber down alternative, or you can even find a wool mattress topper in some cases. Most contain down alternative because it is as affordable, yet as comfortable as down, but isn’t too hot like wool. Depending on the material, you can pick from a softer or firm mattress topper based on what you want.
A mattress cover’s job is to protect against unwanted substances. So, there’s likely going to be times when it absorbs liquids and therefore needs to be washed. Luckily, the mattress toppers mentioned on the list above were all made with durability in mind and can be machine washed at home, then tumble dried on low. However, certain other mattress pads need to be taken to the dry cleaner to be washed. When washing mattress protectors at home, use a mild detergent, no bleach, and lukewarm water.
How to Use Mattress Protectors or Pads
When your product first arrives, you’ll likely find it compressed into a tight bag or vacuum sealed container. How exactly do you use it now?
The first step is to remove the mattress topper from its packaging and fluff out the fabric, giving it time to expand. Check the instructions — some will say it’s best to fluff it out on its own while others recommend you wash it first.
To wash your mattress pad/cover, simply place it in your home washing machine and set it to a gentle wash with lukewarm or cool water (never hot). Check for any holes or rips before placing it in the washer. Use a mild detergent, and do not use bleach. Some mattress protectors have different drying instructions. Check your product to see if you are able to dry it on tumble dry low with a few dryer balls. Otherwise, it may state that air drying will be best to keep it fluffy.
After drying, it’s time to place the mattress pad or cover on your bed. Place the cover on your mattress like you would a fitted bed sheet, making sure it is securely attached to the corners. If it has a zippered mattress encasement closure, you will need to place the cover over your entire mattress similar to a secured pillowcase.
You can now place your mattress pad on top of your mattress cover, which typically also uses a fitted or zippered closure. Then, place your regular fitted bed sheet on top, your linens and comforter or duvet, and try it out to see how it feels! You’ll notice an entirely different soft, quality, and cooling feel to your bed that will make your mattress seem like it is worth thousands and is brand new.
If there’s ever a spill on your bed, remove all sheets along with the protectors and pads. Soak any stains with detergent and let them sit, then wash your cover. Even if there are no stains that get on your bed sheets, natural body oils and sweat trickle down the layers of sheets and make their way onto your mattress protector. Thus, it is recommended to wash your mattress pad or topper once every 2 months. When using a mattress protector, you also don’t need to wash your actual mattress as much, which can be a hassle.