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What is a mattress pad?

You’ve found the perfect mattress, your sleep is blissful and you’re well-rested. The last thing you want is to lose that fresh ‘brand new’ feeling. For most of us, a mattress is an investment, which means you’ll want to keep it in good condition for as long as possible. So, why use a mattress pad, and what does a mattress pad do?

You’re going to want to maintain the comfort and support that your dreamy new mattress offers. A mattress pad or topper is a sure-fire way to look after your mattress, making it cozier, comfier and cleaner - but what is the difference between a mattress pad and topper? And where do mattress protectors come in? We’ve put together a handy buying guide with all the information you need to know about how to choose a mattress topper below.

What's the difference between a mattress pad and topper?

If you’re unsure about the difference between a mattress pad and topper, you’re not alone. In fact, there’s often a lot of widespread confusion about mattress pad vs topper when you’re searching for the perfect bedding. This is because the two terms essentially mean the same thing and are often used interchangeably to describe the same bedding item.

When thinking about mattress pads or toppers, the trick is to look at them as siblings – but not twins. While they’re very closely related, they don’t necessarily have identical qualities.

What is a mattress topper?

So, what is a mattress topper? While you’ll often find that toppers and pads crossover a lot, a mattress topper is generally used to describe a more enhanced, upgraded version of a mattress pad. This makes for a thicker, comfier mattress – depending on the level of comfort you prefer. You might also see these referred to as mattress enhancers in some places.

What is a mattress pad?

Now you’ve got a solid understanding of a mattress topper, you might be thinking, what does a mattress pad do differently? Put simply, a mattress pad is a thin layer of material that is placed on top of your mattress to adjust the firmness. The aim of a mattress pad is to achieve an added layer of comfort to your mattress, or to soften up how firm your mattress is.

But don’t be fooled into thinking that mattress toppers or pads are only for premium, brand-new beds, because they can give a whole new lease of life to an older mattress, too. Both mattress pads and toppers are ideal if you want to make your mattress feel softer, or if you find that you’re sensitive to the lumps and bumps in the surface of your mattress.

What is a mattress protector?

It’s important to note that a mattress pad or topper is different to a mattress protector. So, what is a mattress protector? Essentially, a mattress protector is a thinner layer that can be added to your bed to keep your mattress fresh and clean, offering your mattress and chosen mattress pad or topper extra protection from accidents or spills. We also recommend that you use both to maximize the comfort of your bed.

How to use a mattress pad or topper

Want to choose the right mattress pad or topper for you? We’ve put together some tips to help you find the one that works for you:

Cover fabric: Look for natural fabrics when it comes to a comfortable, breathable mattress pad or topper. Cotton covers provide a cooling surface to sleep on, or for an even softer surface, look for a fleece-topped mattress pad or topper.

Filling: Just like the outer fabric, look for natural filling materials for your mattress pad. Wool is a good choice if you want to keep cool and comfortable at night due to its natural temperature-regulating function, keeping you cool when it’s hot and warm when it’s cooler, so you can sleep in comfort. What’s more, it also absorbs moisture from the body, before releasing it into the atmosphere – this can help to relieve the symptoms of night sweats.

What is the best mattress pad or topper for night sweats?

There’s nothing worse than waking up feeling hot and sweaty at night. The good news? A wool mattress pad or topper can help to ease the symptoms of night sweats by helping to keep you cool and drawing moisture away from the body – meaning you wake less and sleep better. Read more about how to choose the right bedding to alleviate night sweats in our blog.

What is the best mattress pad or topper for allergies?

If you struggle with allergies at night, getting the right mattress pad or topper could help. Look for an all-natural mattress pad or topper filled with wool – this is because wool is naturally hypoallergenic, keeping allergens such as dust mites and fungal spores at bay. In turn, this can help to alleviate your allergy symptoms at night.

What is the best wool mattress pad or topper?

So, you’ve read the benefits of sleeping on a wool mattress pad or topper, but how do you make sure you choose the right one for you? Not all wool bedding products are the same, so make sure that you look for a few key things to be sure that you’re buying a high-quality mattress pad that is going to aid your sleep:

100% wool or alpaca filling: Only fillings that are 100% natural will give you all the heat-regulating benefits of wool

100% natural outer: Look for cotton, fleece or merino wool outers, but avoid synthetics such as polyester as these aren’t breathable and will prevent the wool filling from working effectively

Free from synthetics: Look at the label – if your wool mattress pad or topper contains any synthetics, these could stop it from regulating your temperature or combating allergens effectively – choose 100% natural instead

Naturally flame retardant: Wool is a naturally flame retardant fiber, so there’s no need to treat it with harsh chemicals

Ready to increase your comfort and sleep better? Shop our range of wool mattress toppers today.