It is well-known that almost all college students get fewer than the eight hours of sleep that their bodies demand every night. So, if you cannot increase that, you should ensure that the sleep you do get is the best that it can be. There are several ways to do this. One way would be to limit your blue-light exposure at the end of the day by reading a book or doing something else to help you wind down for the night is by buying a mattress topper, making your bed the comfiest that it can be so you don’t wake up throughout the night.
But, how do you know what the options for mattress toppers are or how to choose the right one?
The following list will give you all the best options from every mattress topper provider out there. Our hope by the end is that you are able to choose one that you can take to college with you and ensure that you get the best rest that you can. So, read on and pick the right mattress topper for you.
What is a Mattress Topper?
Before we go over each of the specific mattresses available to you, we should start with some of the basics. If you are new to the world of mattress toppers, this should help you catch up fast.
Mattress toppers are items of furniture that exist alongside mattresses, pillows, duvets, and sheets. They sit between a mattress and everything above it to provide an extra layer of softness and comfort to anyone lying on the bed. Toppers are often bought if there is a problem with the mattress that does not demand a whole new mattress, like if you need to soften an existing mattress. Also, if you cannot replace the furniture in the furnished unit, like a college dorm, it’s a great choice to make the mattress your own sanctuary.
Many expensive mattresses now come in many layers that recreate the feeling of a mattress topper. Although buying a mattress topper gives you the luxury of a new mattress feel without buying a whole new mattress.
There are many different types of mattress toppers and several kinds of materials that are used in their construction. The choice of mattress topper may depend on these options, as not all manufacturers create all different kinds.
Popular Mattress Topper Features
As you go shopping for a mattress topper, you will want to know what the options are out there. This way, you can know what to look for and ask about.
The following are some of the features that exist for some of the more luxurious or niche mattress toppers on the market.
The top of an egg crate topper extends out in protrusions above the mattress topper. This creates peaks and troughs that extend along the upper surface of the bedding. The shape ends up looking like acoustic foam but has a very different benefit from dampening noise during the night.
This unique shape lifts the user above parts of the bedding. By doing this, the mattress topper has a better opportunity for air to travel underneath the sleeper. This can cool the surface down and gives a much better experience when the user knows that they sleep hot and might need help to prevent this.
Because of where you place them, mattress toppers are prone to becoming affected by the body's moisture. This can lead to many different problems, including bad smells and the chance of mold patches developing.
To combat this, some brands like Sleepyhead have started to infuse their mattress toppers with extra ingredients that aim to prevent this. Examples of such infusions include:
- Copper particulates
- Plant oils
Many of these have antimicrobial effects. This will stop odors from forming as bacteria spreads on the surface, and as such, can prolong the life of your mattress topper.
Gel-Infused Memory Foam
Gel-infused toppers are unlike any other mattress topper on the market. These toppers have many benefits, however the greatest is their cooling effect. Gel toppers dissipate body heat much faster than regular beds alone. They do this without reducing the comfort level they provide because of their memory foam construction.
On top of this, the gel infusion in the memory foam contours to the body's shape providing added support.
Copper-Infused Memory Foam
Copper infusion has many of the same benefits as gel but also some extra benefits too.
Copper, for example, has antimicrobial properties. These work to keep the mattress topper clean and free from odor, smells or growth.
Copper is also hypoallergenic. It is highly unlikely that anyone will have an allergic aversion to copper. This makes it a fantastic option for sleeping on, especially in comparison with materials such as latex.
To help with safeguarding you and your body, a copper infusion can also help resist mites or bed bugs. They are much less likely to take hold in such a bed, meaning that you can rest assured that you do not need to worry about this pest.
Finally, studies have shown that copper promotes better focus in humans. If this occurs at night, then the neural pathways that the brain creates during sleep will be more robust and well-produced.
Some manufacturers build mattress toppers with several detachable layers. These contain a core of foam or even memory foam. Around this core, there is a layer of fiberfill to add to the softness of the bedding.
These layers create a greater sense of durability as the outer layer can take a beating while the inside holds firm. When you find the outer layer to be too damaged to continue, you can replace it with another.
You can choose from many different materials for the construction of your mattress topper (see below). Although, one of the benefits of this is that you have the capability of choosing only organic options.
By choosing organic materials, you can have the assurance that your bedding has no extra additives or chemicals. This can help if you have allergies or sensitive skin.
The only downside is that many of these organic options can either start to smell, such as natural wool, or begin to break down in the case of feathers. Also very expensive.
When choosing the best mattress topper for college, you will want to ensure that the material matches your needs. Some of these are perfect for different sleepers, while others are good for living in different climates.
The following options for mattress toppers will explain how the different materials will affect how you might sleep. Some also have other benefits.
This is the soft, fluffy feather filling that makes up a lot of bedding. The best source of down comes from the underside of ducks and geese, although other sources are available throughout the modern world.
This material is very lightweight and soft to the touch. This gives these mattress toppers the most relaxing and comfortable feel. But it’s not supportive so it can be too soft for people who prefer harder surfaces to sleep on.
Another problem with down is its resistance to cleaning. If you spill anything on such a surface, it will be hard to remove stains. The last thing that you want to do would be to dry-clean an expensive down cover.
Latex works a lot like polyfoam by having a structure that allows heat to leave the body through its form.
Unless you have a latex allergy, it can be a hypoallergenic material. This is because mites and mold are unlikely to take root in it.
Despite these positive points, latex is often much more expensive than other options and they can often also smell when you get them. As this smell is much like other latex products, you may want to think about if you want your bedroom to smell like that all the time. They are also more firm and heavy to haul and carry.
This material has become famous in recent decades for its sturdy and malleable nature. As you lie on it, it will reshape to match the natural silhouette of your body. This helps you relax without tossing and turning until you get comfy.
These toppers come in a range of thicknesses, and the price is reflective of the quality and craftsmanship. So if you get a cheap topper on Amazon you may end up replacing it sooner rather than later.
This is much like standard memory foam uses less chemicals which increase its density and viscosity, although it feels a bit more spongy. You can buy this material with the same infusions that memory foam has, so you have the same assurance when it comes to those materials.
The two main reasons why people use polyfoam are that it both cools easier and can often be cheaper. Both of these advantages mean that those with a harder mattress might have a better time with this topper. Many mattress companies do not offer polyfoam for a twin XL mattress, and even less offer it as a mattress topper.
There’s a reason why Sleepyhead focuses on copper and gel toppers. They’re the best on the market, so the more we focus on those two instead of everything else, the better we can make our copper and gel toppers.
These kinds of covers are what was popular for many, many years on the beds of people throughout history. There is nothing quite like tradition and the feel of wool as you sleep. The only trouble is that there is also nothing quite like the smell of sheep as you try to sleep.
Wool wicks out heat very well, much better than many synthetic materials. If you prefer a soft mattress though, wool is not the option for you. It can be firm and too bouncy.
Another issue, though, is that to get all its benefits, you will have to pay a lot more for it. Often this will be a lot for enough wool to cover a whole bed.
The Best Mattress Toppers in All Brands
There are many mattress toppers available from different brands in the United States. Below we list the best options from many different brands. This way, you can choose which ones will work best for you.
If you are unsure whether a feature or material is for you, remember to check the above. We have offered enough information for you to make an informed decision.
These toppers use a proprietary foam system that helps move moisture away from the body while also cooling down the sleeper.
One of the unique selling points of this one is the graphite infusion. This helps with moving the heat away from the sleeper's body but also helps to keep the topper free from microbes. This prevents odors from developing.
AmeriSleep brought out its mattress toppers which the company infused with "HIVE" technology in 2022.
The company has released two different versions of this topper. The first is labeled as "Comfort" and has more of a cushioning effect on your body. This is good for side sleepers who might need to sink into the mattress a little bit more.
The other offering from AmeriSleep is "Support." This is slightly firmer and uses a foam they call Affinity. It provides a more solid surface that is better for those with back pain or other aches.
The AmeriSleep options also come with a removable cover. These are always good in case you have accidental spillages, as washing the whole mattress can be problematic.
If you worry about the environment, AmeriSleep makes its products out of eco-friendly materials.
But for a much affordable price (especially if you’re on a college budget), Sleepyhead offers a removable cover so it’s easy for clean-ups and our mattress toppers are made specifically for the college dorm mattress. You won’t find another topper with the same values in mind. We’re also eco-friendly too!
Avocado's entry into the mattress topper arena is an organic, latex option. Avocado boasts that it harvests this latex from sustainable tree farms and that this will not cause ecological damage.
Without wool or animal products, this topper also boasts vegan status if that is a concern. Such a mattress topper is a rarity, so take heed if you wish for this kind of feature.
One of the features of the avocado mattress is its reinforced seams. If you have pets that are likely to shift a mattress topper as they race around your home, this can help keep your bed in one piece.
The mattress topper even comes in a range of softnesses. Thus, you should be able to find the exact topper that you need.
When looking at the Bear Mattress Pro Topper, you will find that it provides a copper-infused foam option. This material can help move heat away from the body and keep you cool overnight. On top of this, such metal is antimicrobial, and you will find that you do not need to clean the topper as much as other options.
Sleepyhead offers these incentives too, and even better? We offer it for the size of your dorm room mattress.
Helix's manufacturers decided to make their mattress topper cover out of bamboo. The organic material is very capable of cooling the person lying on it. This means that this is a great choice for people prone to overnight overheating.
The rest of the Helix is a polyester material, though, meaning that this may not be the best choice for side sleepers. This mattress does not mold as well to the shape of a person on their side.
Our gel and copper mattress toppers are both designed to keep you cool overnight from overheating. As an added plus, Sleepyheads copper topper is also anti-microbial so you won’t have to worry about mold patches or other bacteria growth.
The Leesa mattress is a foam mattress that the makers have decided to contain within a machine-washable cover. This allows you to replace the bedding whenever you need to and gives you the freedom to not worry as much about it when you have guests over.
The trouble with Leesa mattresses is that they can run into the expensive side. For a college student, they may not be the best choice unless you have access to funds that will allow it. Similarly, college students’ dorm mattresses are typically an XL twin, and Leesa doesn’t offer dorm mattress toppers like Sleepyhead does. We offer all sizes from twin to king, including twin XL and full XL. And more importantly, we know you’re not allowed to change out your dorm mattress with a new one, that’s why our focus is on a mattress topper and not the whole mattress like Leesa.
For those with bad backs, you could do a lot worse than investigating the Linenspa gel memory foam mattress design. Linenspa boasts that its egg crate design works alongside the gel to prevent you from overheating as much overnight. Although egg crate is a thing of the past this company still uses it.
PandaZzz offers a multi-layer, luxury mattress topper. Their topper includes two layers of memory foam, heat wicking, eco-friendly materials, and a very hefty price tag.
This mattress is perfect for side sleepers and back sleepers. Both of these groups need to sink a little into the bed for the best experience, and this topper is ideal to mold to the body's shape in this way.
These very comfortable bed toppers focus mainly on the ability to cool off the body. They use a patented form of foam that claims to wick heat away from the body faster than other options.
The topper company makes claims about the bedding's antimicrobial qualities and hypoallergenic nature. Thus, if you are prone to allergies then this may be one of the better choices for you.
The major problem that we would highlight is that the company states that the mattress topper cover should never be machine washed. If you think that a college student has time to hand-wash, or would want to, then this topper is fantastic. If not, then PlushBeds is not the choice for you.
Sleepyheads topper covers are machine washable so you can take them to the laundromat on campus, near campus, or to your parents house. And if the topper isn’t dry and ready to put back on your mattress by the time you’re ready to sleep, the mattress topper is perfectly safe to sleep on. Just keep in mind not to spill any foods or drinks on your mattress topper until the cover is back on.
Saatva is a mattress topper provider with a plan to "elevate your sleep experience."
The Saatva mattress topper comes in several materials, and this includes a graphite carbon infusion. As discussed above, this helps keep the topper clean and free from mold and other issues.
Their latex and foam options cost more though they offer different experiences. Each of them also comes with securing straps that help keep the mattress topper in place.
Instead of heat-wicking, the Saatva mattress boasts the ability to wick moisture away from the body. If you are unable to reduce the heat in a room, this can be a much-needed innovation.
But instead of choosing between benefits, you can head over to Sleepyhead where our copper topper keeps you cool at night, resists microbials, eliminates odors, and has straps to keep the topper in place. It’s everything Saatva offers but in one.
This company's offerings include a gel memory foam mattress topper. Their topper allows air to flow underneath the topper between it and the mattress, cooling it down.
The only thing that we would warn you of is that this mattress is infamous for its strong smell when removed from its packaging. Many customers have stated that they waited several days before they felt the odor had abated enough that they could sleep on the mattress. Some even mentioned that it never went away and stayed with the bed for the rest of its use.
Tempur-Pedic tries to position itself as a health-improvement brand via its mattresses. For the most part, this is convincing, as their memory foam is famous for its positive qualities. Their toppers are plain jane and decreasing in popularity as new brands have emerged since the early 2000’s.
Much like some of these other options, the issue with Tempur-Pedic mattress toppers is largely the price. If you do not wish to spend hundreds of dollars on a mattress topper, you will want to look elsewhere. You are also unable to return a mattress topper if you find out it doesn’t work for you.
Sleepyhead offers a “good till you graduate” 5-year warranty. You only need an XL twin mattress topper for as long as you’re in school.
Subrtex has four different mattress toppers to choose from. They have gel-infused, green tea ventilated gel-infused, organic gel-infused with premier Rayon, and green tea infused with premier Rayon.
Ventilation improves more airflow and heat transfer which will keep you cool during the night. The organic option comes with a removable bamboo topper cover which will protect your mattress topper from normal wear and tear and any spills. It can be removed and washed in the washing machine.
The toppers come with straps to keep them secure on the mattress and they also offer XL twin size mattress toppers.
Sleepyhead was created in a college dorm room. All these other companies aren’t tailored to college students from start to finish, including the customer service experience. We know how hard it is to get a good night's sleep on a college dorm bed, that’s why Sleepyhead was created. We have mattress toppers for all bed sizes, but more specifically an extra long twin that colleges supply dorm rooms with. No more hard and used mattresses. Sleepyhead is the only choice, but it’s also the best one.
Their copper-infused memory foam mattress topper is great at managing an antimicrobial environment. This means that it will not start to develop a significant odor on its own because it fights bacteria.
On top of this, copper is a hypoallergenic infusion. Pests such as mites and bed bugs that might cause allergic reactions will not find the topper to be a hospitable environment to breed in. They will not trouble you anymore.
The Sleepyhead also comes with a cover. Thus you will find that it is easy to clean and allows you to not need to worry about those times when you have someone over for breakfast in bed. All you need to do is remove the cover, clean it, and replace it.
For another option from Sleepyhead, you can also investigate the gel-infused mattress topper. This one includes infused gel throughout the memory foam that makes up the topper. This gel is perfect for trapping and transporting heat away from the sleeper.
Because of the differences between them, you will also find that the gel topper is the budget option of the two. College students may find that they will only want the gel infusion. Although, you can’t go wrong investing in the copper topper.
Sleepyhead has made all its mattress toppers from the same memory foam and polyfoam material. Their unique makeup of foam helps your body to feel at ease overnight due to aligning the spine and offering comfort you would not otherwise get.
Whichever option you pick, each of them has its benefits. So choose wisely.
Which Is the Best Mattress Topper?
Now that you have read the above, you should have more of an understanding of all the mattress topper features on the market. So, you can now go and buy the mattress topper that fits your needs, whether you want soft, firm, or something to match your budget. Still, you might want to know more before you make a decision.Luckily for you, our site has all the information you need on the best toppers around: Gel or copper toppers. If you want the best mattress topper, check out our website and shop now.