Whether you’re looking to keep your mattress clean and dry, or you want to avoid stains on your sheets, a mattress protector is an essential part of your bedding. Mattress protectors provide a barrier between your mattress and its surroundings, protecting against liquids and spills, dust mites, allergens, and other contaminants.
Mattress protectors are especially helpful if you live in a humid climate where mold can grow easily on furniture; these covers will keep your mattress safe from moisture while still allowing air circulation. With that in mind, when shopping for a mattress protector, you must find one that is both waterproof and breathable. To help you choose one, we’ve jotted down some top-rated mattress protectors for 2023.
Buying a mattress is a huge investment and many people want their mattresses to last forever. But unfortunately, mattresses are prone to regular wear and tear. That’s why your choice of mattress protectors is crucial for protecting your bedding.
Susan Miller, certified sleep expert, said, “As a sleep expert, I recommend a protector as it keeps the mattress clean and free from allergens.” But, not all mattress protectors are made equal. That’s why we’ve put together this comprehensive buying guide to help you choose the ideal product for your needs.
Different Types of Mattress Protectors
Encasing mattress protectors are designed to fit your regular bed mattress and entirely encase it. Most of these mattress protectors are secured with a zip or buttons to keep them from sliding when you turn and toss around on your bed. Because of its design, this type provides excellent protection against dust mites and bed bugs.
This is a more basic design that just covers the top side of your mattress and usually has an elastic tied to each corner. Because it doesn’t cover the underside of your mattress, the design is less secure and protective.
Fitted mattress protectors
This is the most common style and it comes with an elasticated skirt that easily fits under your mattress. This type of mattress protector covers the bed pretty well and helps protect against dust and stains.
How To Choose a Mattress Protector
You should choose the material of your mattress protector wisely. Cotton is the most common material when it comes to mattress protectors because of its breathability and comfort. That said, some people prefer buying a product made using synthetic fabrics, as these materials are moisture-wicking and retain body heat to keep you comfy and snug all night. Synthetic fabrics are also less expensive than cotton, so if you’re on a budget, they might be the right choice for you.
You must know the size of your bed to choose the right type of mattress protector. To ensure that your mattress protector will perfectly fit the mattress, you can take measurements before making a purchase. If you have a queen-size bed, for example, you must get a queen-size mattress protector, and a king-size protector will fit a mattress of the same size perfectly as well.
The next thing that you should look for in the mattress protector is waterproofing. If you have kids or pets at home, a high-quality waterproof mattress protector will help you keep stains and dust at bay and protect your mattress against accidental spills or mishaps.
If you live in hotter regions and excessive heat is interfering with your sleep, you need a mattress protector with cooling features. Some mattresses feel hot at night because they trap and retain your body’s heat and provide poor air circulation — if you prefer using a memory foam mattress, for instance, but can’t stand how hot it gets at night, get a mattress protector with cooling memory beads to stay cool all night. Also, some mattress toppers are thicker and have gel or latex infused in a thin layer to diminish the effects of your body heat.
You should also keep in mind that natural materials like bamboo and cotton are more effective at controlling and regulating heat than synthetic counterparts. But if you aren’t a hot sleeper or don’t sweat religiously at night, this won’t significantly affect your decision.
A mattress protector that won’t make annoying noises when your bed companion flips or twists is a great choice. You should look for a product that has minimal motion transfer and won’t slightly vibrate, even if your partner keeps tossing around all night.
To ensure that you’re purchasing your mattress protector from a reliable company and it will last you years of use, purchase one that’s backed by a warranty. The warranty from most manufacturers usually helps you replace your mattress protector in case you get a defective piece, making it a safer investment.
Utopia Bedding Mattress Protector is a must-have for every bedroom. This mattress protector is made from stretchable knitted polyester fabric that is soft and breathable to the touch, providing maximum comfort for your body. It also has high-quality TPU backing on all sides to provide optimal protection against dust mites, bed bugs, and other allergens that can affect your sleep quality.
Even more, it is waterproof and stain-resistant, which means this pick won’t let any liquid pass through or leave stains on your mattress. Best of all, this mattress protector is available in a range of sizes — from crib all the way to California king — so you can easily pick one according to your needs. Its premium stitching and protective features are the reasons why we’ve selected this mattress protector as the best overall on our list.
Want to keep your mattress clean and dry? Check out the SafeRest Mattress Protector. This mattress protector is made from premium cotton terry, which is soft to the touch and helps prevent stains, dust mites, and allergens. It’s also hypoallergenic and extremely breathable, helping you stay cool throughout the night.
Additionally, this mattress protector features a membrane back coating that protects against urine and other fluids — especially useful for those who have young children or pets. Featuring a fitted sheet style, this product is designed to accommodate mattresses up to 18 inches deep and is OEKO-TEX certified, meaning it’s non-toxic and safe for your family.
SureGuard Mattress Protector is a premium mattress protector that will help you sleep peacefully every night. It features a cotton terry top that is luxuriously comfortable and 100% waterproof, meaning that it will protect your mattress from spills, accidents, and even perspiration.
There’s a breathable membrane between the top and bottom layers that helps wick away moisture and keeps your mattress fresh. Meanwhile, the Flexi-skirt technology ensures that the protector stays in place throughout the night to provide you with uninterrupted sleep. Most importantly, it is free from vinyl, PVC, phthalates, fire retardants, and other toxic chemicals, making it safe for your family’s health.
Breathable membrane helps regulate body temperature
With the Aller-Ease Mattress Protector, you don’t have to worry about the dirt, dust, and dander that can get on your mattress. This mattress protector is made of tightly woven, expertly-designed fabric that’s proven to keep out both bed bugs and dust mites. It’s also water-repellent so you can rest easy knowing that your mattress won’t be ruined by any accidental spills or leaks.
Even better, it’s made of breathable fabric that helps regulate body temperature, so you can comfortably sleep through the night. And, with its flex-fit technology, this pick fits snugly onto your mattress without any gaps for allergens to sneak through. Available in a range of sizes, this mattress protector comes with a lifetime warranty, so you can purchase it with complete peace of mind.
Provides maximum protection against mattress invaders
Get the rest you deserve with the Four Seasons Essentials Mattress Protector. Made of high-quality polyester material, this mattress protector features a polyurethane inner lining that blocks liquids and moisture, protecting your mattress against allergens and dust mites. Unlike other mattress protectors, this one has a stretchable and breathable fabric that will help you sleep comfortably, no matter what time of year it is.
Since this protector is completely noiseless, you won’t even know it’s there! Also, this mattress protector fits 12 to 16-inch thick mattresses, so you don’t have to worry about whether your mattress is too small or too big for this cover. And, featuring a six-sided zippered enclosure, this mattress protector is easy to put on and take off, making it ideal for use in hotels and at home.
Hypoallergenic and waterproof
Extremely breathable and soft
Easy to put on and take off
Not completely water resistant
People Also Asked
Q: How much should I spend on a mattress protector?
A: When you’re scrolling to purchase the perfect mattress protector for your bed, price is always a major concern. Some people think that the more expensive a mattress protector is, the longer it will last, but this isn’t always the case. Sometimes, cheap products can last as long as their high-priced counterparts, but you need to know which factors can help you screen a high-quality option. Also, keep in mind that saving a few bucks by purchasing a cheap mattress protector now can eventually cost you more as you have to pay for repair and replacement. You shouldn’t hesitate to pay a little bit more to get better protection by choosing an option that lasts you longer.
Q: Can using a mattress protector help with my sleep?
A: It depends on the type of mattress protector you choose and its thickness. Because most protectors or toppers are fairly thin, they won’t have any significant impact on the hardness or comfort of your mattress. If you have mistakenly bought a hard mattress and want to add a comfy layer to it, you can choose a foam mattress protector or a mattress pad.
Q: Can my mattress protector get hot during summer?
A: Because mattress toppers are usually made using thinner materials, they are often less hot than mattress pads and toppers. But some protectors can retain your body heat, especially if you have purchased one that’s not made using permeable materials. To enjoy a good night’s sleep, you should choose a mattress protector made from bamboo or cotton because these materials wick away moisture easily and have amazing breathability. Polyester mattress covers, on the other hand, are an ideal choice for winter to add a cozy layer to your sleeping surface. Also, waterproof mattress protectors retain heat, so they aren’t a good option for summers or if you live in a hotter environment.
Q: How often should I wash my mattress protector?
A: Mattress protectors work as a protective layer between the elements and your mattress, trapping the dust and debris that will otherwise build up on your mattress. They are usually made to withstand frequent washing and won’t rip after a few uses. But, how much washing and what type of wash cycle a mattress protector can endure depends on the material used to make the cover. It’s recommended to wash your mattress protector every two months, but it will need frequent cleaning if you have kids and pets around.
Q: How do I know if my mattress needs a protector?
A: While most people think of mattress protectors as a waste of money, they help you enjoy a good night’s sleep. If your mattress gets dirty quickly or hosts kids and pets all day, you must get a mattress protector to keep it in tip-top shape for a long time. Similarly, sleeping on a firm and hot mattress can cause discomfort and you might wake up sweaty. That’s why a mattress protector is essential to improve the feel and comfort of your mattress.
The Old House Journal Review Team’s product reviews and in-depth guides are here to help you restore, repair, update, and decorate your home. The content is created by The Old House Journal Review Team. The Old House Journal editorial staff is not involved. Old House Journal is reader-supported: When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. All questions regarding articles or product testing can be sent to email@example.com
Expert Contributions By Susan Miller
Susan Miller is a founding member, lead researcher, reviewer, and writer at SleepMattressHQ. She hails from New York and is the brain behind leading the research and testing of the products