The Best Mattress Protectors
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We all know that we should wash our sheets and blankets regularly, but how do we keep our mattresses clean? You can’t exactly throw a mattress in the washing machine.
But you can defend your mattress with a mattress protector. A mattress protector covers your mattress to keep out a variety of contaminants ranging from liquid to dust mites. It can help ensure that your mattress lasts as long as possible and that your sleep isn’t interrupted by allergy attacks. Mattress protectors are a helpful addition to your bedding set, no matter what type of mattress you have.
In this guide, we’ll offer a list of our top picks for the best mattress protectors available today. We’ll also review what a mattress protector is, describe how it’s different from a mattress pad, and provide other important information so that you can be an informed shopper when looking for this important part of your bedding.
Our Top Picks
SafeRest Premium Mattress Protector
Why we like it:
- Polyurethane membrane blocks water, dust, and allergens
- Unobtrusive protector with minimal noise
- Extra deep pocket fits mattresses up to 18”
The SafeRest Premium Mattress Protector is a low-cost, no-frills solution for anyone looking to add a reliable line of defense to their mattress. The cover is made of soft cotton terry on top with a polyurethane membrane as its backing. The cotton keeps it soft so that you don’t feel the protector through your sheets, and the cotton also reduces sound while moving on top of the bed.
The backing makes it so that the protector is waterproof and is a barrier against bacteria, dust mites, and other allergens. A zipper allows the protector to fully encase the mattress, protecting against bed bugs, and a velcro enclosure keeps the zipper from accidentally opening. An extra deep pocket allows this protector to fit mattresses that are up to 18” tall.
Brooklyn Bedding Mattress Encasement
Why we like it:
- Fully enclosed zipper creates impenetrable barrier
- Breathable material prevents overheating
- Can be machine-washed and dried without shrinkage
The Brooklyn Bedding Mattress Encasement is a fully zippered cover to provide maximum protection to your mattress. It is made with 100% polyester that is waterproof and repels stains and other potential contaminants. It is a barrier against bed bugs and dust mites as well.
The encasement can be laundered in your washer and dryer and won’t shrink in the process, so you can easily keep it fresh. The pocket depth is 14”, so it fits most mattresses, and it has a breathable membrane that keeps the protector from holding in heat.
Brooklyn Bedding has been in the mattress industry for over 20 years and has a proven reputation for quality. They offer a 30-night sleep trial for you to try out this encasement with the option to return it if you aren’t satisfied.
PlushBeds Organic Cotton Mattress Protector
Why we like it:
- 100% organic cotton top
- Waterproof micro-thin polyurethane backing
- Fitted sheet style is easier to place on mattress
This mattress protector from PlushBeds is made with 100% organic cotton certified by the Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS), which has criteria that focus on sustainable production. Eco-conscious customers also appreciate that this protector is shipped in biodegradable packaging made from corn and hemp.
Underneath the organic cotton is a thin layer of polyurethane that provides a waterproof barrier to defend your mattress from all types of stains. The cotton layer provides a soft and quiet feel so that using this protector is not disruptive to your sleep.
The PlushBeds mattress protector does not fully encase your mattress but goes on in the same way that a fitted sheet would. While this protection is not as all-encompassing, it is sufficient for many customers and is easier to put on and take off. It can fit mattresses up to 14” tall.
No returns are accepted once you have opened the packaging of this protector, but PlushBeds does provide a 5-year limited warranty.
Malouf Sleep Tite Pr1me Smooth Mattress Protector
Why we like it:
- 22” pocket depth fits virtually any mattress
- Smooth and breathable polyester cover
- H2Pro membrane serves as a waterproof barrier
- 15-year limited warranty
The Malouf Sleep Tite Pr1me Smooth Mattress Protector is a perfect match for customers who need a waterproof and dependable mattress protector with extra deep pockets. It has an elastic band that fits mattresses up to 22” inches tall and goes on like a fitted sheet rather than as a full mattress encasement.
Polyester material is breathable and hypoallergenic and features the company’s H2Pro waterproofing membrane. This treatment provides defenses against allergens and dust mites as well as liquids of all types. At the same time, it is smooth enough to avoid disrupting your sleep and breathable enough to avoid retaining excess heat.
This protector is available at a competitive price and comes with a 30-day return window when purchased on Amazon. Malouf also backs their product with a 15-year limited warranty covering any defects in materials or workmanship.
Best Mattress Protector Buying Guide
What is a Mattress Protector?
A mattress protector does just what its name implies. It protects your mattress from sweat stains, bed wetting, dust mites, and other allergens.
There’s some variation in what different protectors are designed to keep out and how they’re designed to perform. Some are waterproof, while others are simply water resistant. You’ll also find different methods for keeping liquid from reaching the mattress, with liquid pooling on top of some protectors and being absorbed by others.
While most protectors are designed to keep liquid from your mattress, others are also hypoallergenic and keep away dust mites and bacteria. For those who sleep hot, there are also protectors with heat-wicking properties.
Mattress protectors are sometimes confused with mattress pads or mattress toppers, but they all serve different purposes. Mattress protectors and mattress pads are both designed to create a barrier around the mattress, but protectors are typically designed to keep out liquids, while pads are less likely to be waterproof. Pads also tend to change the feel of the mattress to some degree. Mattress toppers are specifically designed to add comfort to a mattress and offer little to no protection from contaminants.
The table below gives more information about similarities and differences.
|Mattress Protector||Mattress Pad||Mattress Topper|
|Purpose||To keep contaminants and liquids from reaching mattress||To keep contaminants from reaching mattress and add some comfort||To add additional cushioning and comfort to mattress|
|Material||Cotton, polyester, rayon, polyurethane||Cotton, down, polyester||Memory foam, latex, wool, down|
|Thickness||1” or fewer||1” or fewer||1-3"|
|When You Might Need One||You want to protect your mattress from both contaminants (like bacteria) and liquids. Maybe your child shares your bed frequently or you sleep hot and sweat through the sheets.||You want to protect your mattress from contaminants like bacteria, dust mites or other allergens, but don’t see a need for keeping out liquids||You would like to add comfort to your mattress and/or adjust its firmness level|
Interested in a mattress pad or topper instead? Check out our reviews.
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Why Everyone Should Consider Buying a Mattress Protector
To find the right mattress, we invest a great deal of research, time, and money. Why wouldn’t we want to protect that investment? Especially when you consider that we spend about one-third of our life sleeping, it follows that we’d like to ensure our sleep surface is as clean and healthy as possible.
There are a variety of situations that warrant purchasing a mattress protector. Perhaps you sleep hot and frequently sweat through the sheets. Maybe your child sometimes wets the bed and you want to protect their mattress or your own if they occasionally hop into your bed. You might also have allergies or eczema, or you just don’t like the idea of sharing your bed with hundreds of dust mites.
Even if none of the above applies to you, the reality is that accidents do happen. Who hasn’t spilled some water when reaching for a sip in the middle of the night? Even those who don’t suffer from allergies benefit from a sleep surface free of contaminants.
Bodily fluids not only make a mattress feel less clean, but liquid can also wear down materials in your mattress, shortening its lifespan. Most mattress warranties don’t protect against spills or accidents. If you try to return your mattress because of a defect, your warranty may be void because of that pesky coffee stain.
How to Select the Right Mattress Protector
Just like when you’re selecting a mattress, there are several considerations to take into account when shopping for a mattress protector.
Most mattress protectors feature a soft top layer with a waterproof layer underneath. Natural materials like cotton and bamboo tend to be more absorbent than polyester, so look for these if you want your mattress protector to contain some liquid rather than completely repel it.
Some form of polyurethane is typically found in the waterproof barrier, but other protectors use vinyl instead. Vinyl has been linked to environmental and health issues, so if this is a concern, make sure you choose a protector that is vinyl-free.
While most mattress protectors are made to be waterproof, this isn’t universally true, and some perform better than others. Some protectors only claim to be water-resistant. You might also want to look into whether a protector is designed to completely repel water or to at least partially absorb it. This is particularly important if you’re purchasing a protector for a child and want to avoid having them wake up in a puddle.
Bed Bug Protection
Mattress protectors are designed to keep out dust mites and allergens, but mattress encasement is the only way to keep out bed bugs. Encasement means that the protector goes all the way around the mattress and can be securely closed. If bed bugs are a concern of yours, look for a protector that covers your mattress on all six sides to ensure the bugs can’t find a way in.
If you suffer from allergies, then you’ll want to find a mattress protector that is specifically designed to keep common allergens out of your bed. This is especially important if you are allergic to dust mites, which can build up in mattresses that are not covered by effective protectors. Also, ensure that the protector itself is hypoallergenic so you won’t find yourself reacting to your protector.
Most mattress protectors will fit mattresses up to 14-18”, but make sure to check the specifications if you have a high-profile mattress. Some brands offer protectors for lower profile mattresses, so you might opt for one of those if your mattress is thin. Look for protectors made from stretchy material with elastic sides to avoid any bunching.
Because of their waterproof layers, some mattress protectors can trap heat. Especially if you tend to sleep hot, you’ll want to look for a protector that is designed to encourage airflow.
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