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The Best Firm Mattress Toppers of 2020

In the world of mattress toppers, oftentimes the desired effect is to add a little plushness and give to a firm bed. There are instances, however, when time and toll can make already-soft beds uncomfortably soft. You sink in, your spine loses its alignment and you wake up every morning with a litany of aches and pains.

Adding a firm mattress topper can be a great way to provide a little extra support without going all in on a newer, firmer mattress. Or, if you’re a person who likes a firmer sleeping surface (or you’re a back or stomach sleeper) and your partner likes to sink into a more plush bedding, a topper can be a great way to achieve that desired balance. The best firm mattress toppers come in a variety of materials and features, but luckily we’re here to help you parse the category.

Best Firm Mattress Toppers

Editor’s Pick

ViscoSoft 3” Memory Foam Mattress Topper

Pros: 

  • The big pro here is density. When you’re in the market for a firm mattress topper, a light foam just won’t cut it. 
  • An added benefit of this density is longevity. This topper has a lifespan months beyond comparable products.
  • It also comes with a soft, machine-washable cover.

Cons: 

  • Though common with gel toppers, the chemically off-gassing smell of this mattress is pretty intense; though it will dissipate over time, right out of the box it can be a lot to take in.
ViscoSoft 3” Memory Foam Mattress Topper
ViscoSoft 3” Memory Foam Mattress Topper
ViscoSoft 3” Memory Foam Mattress Topper

The real highlight of this three-inch memory foam topper is its density. Weighing in at nearly 40 pounds, this soft but firm topper sits snugly on a mattress, and controls weight distribution to eliminate sleep problems caused by active sleepers. It has just enough give to contour to your body shape, but enough springback to avoid sinking in and misaligning your spine.

Top Contender

BedStory 3” Gel Memory Foam Mattress Topper

Pros: 

  • The memory foam provided a good amount of firmness, and displaced weight in all the right places for all-night comfort.
  • The topper also includes a washable, removable cover, and its four-corner straps held it firmly to the mattress.
  • It also features a lavender scent, which was a nice touch compared to comparable products that overwhelmed with the smell of chemicals.

Cons: 

  • Though the lavender smell is nice once it calms a bit, on first blush it can be a bit overwhelming and artificial. 
BedStory 3” Gel Memory Foam Mattress Topper
BedStory 3” Gel Memory Foam Mattress Topper
BedStory 3” Gel Memory Foam Mattress Topper

Made of a unique gel-infused memory foam, this three-inch firm mattress topper provided both comfort and cooling. While we found the memory foam to have the desired amount of give, it provided enough resistance and support to keep hips and backs comfortable through the night. And the gel in the foam helped with ventilation, which helped with uncomfortable overheating.

Best Cooling Firm Mattress Topper

RUUF Active Cooling 4” Memory Foam Mattress Topper

Pros:

  • The density of this mattress topper makes it a great addition to any bed looking for a little extra firmness without sacrificing comfort. The memory foam design conforms to the body, but there’s enough resistance to keep you from sinking in.
  • The headline here is the gel-infused cooling design, which is ideal for hot sleepers.

Cons: 

  • While the topper itself is designed to keep cool, the included cover didn’t get the memo; you may want to consider covering it with a slightly more breathable material.
RUUF Active Cooling 4” Memory Foam Mattress Topper
RUUF Active Cooling 4” Memory Foam Mattress Topper
RUUF Active Cooling 4” Memory Foam Mattress Topper

Don’t let the denseness of this mattress topper fool you; even though it sits thick and sturdy on your bed, its unique ventilated memory foam design encourages airflow and will keep you cool and comfortable throughout the night. Choose from two, three, or four-inch thicknesses to suit your unique needs.

Best Latex Firm Mattress Topper

Pure Green 100% Natural Latex Mattress Topper

Pros: 

  • Compared to synthetic latex materials, this mattress topper provides an added level of breathability and durability. When other fillers are added to latex, it can cause overheating
  • Synthetic materials can also equate to decay and degradation over time, but the natural latex on display here has great longevity.
  • Overall, we found this topper to be durable, comfortable, and reliable.

Cons: 

  • The topper on its own is comfortable, but we wish there was an added cover that would protect it, soften it, and make it a bit more stable on the mattress.
Pure Green 100% Natural Latex Mattress Topper
Pure Green 100% Natural Latex Mattress Topper
Pure Green 100% Natural Latex Mattress Topper

Made of 100% natural latex, this extra-firm mattress topper is built for those who really want added support when they sleep. This durably-made topper is designed to last, and the base structure of latex foam contains air pockets which naturally helps the topper circulate air.

Best Moisture-Reducing Firm Mattress Topper

Lucid 4” Bamboo Charcoal Memory Foam Mattress Topper

Pros: 

  • The mattress topper’s main draw is its unique material. By infusing the memory foam with bamboo charcoal (a process of heating bamboo to high temperatures to create a natural filter of sorts), the topper takes on the ability to regulate odor and moisture.
  • It’s a great option for those with heat and sweat regulation issues at night.

Cons: 

  • We have found that there are some longevity issues with this topper; especially for overly active sleepers, this topper may not be the best option as it can sag or lose resistance over time.
Lucid 4” Bamboo Charcoal Memory Foam Mattress Topper
Lucid 4” Bamboo Charcoal Memory Foam Mattress Topper
Lucid 4” Bamboo Charcoal Memory Foam Mattress Topper

This unique, hypoallergenic firm mattress topper is infused with bamboo charcoal which is specially designed to regulate temperature, reduce odor, and protect against moisture. The contouring memory foam material forms to your body, but offers enough firmness and resistance for those looking for extra support.

 

Firm Mattress Topper Methodology

Choosing the right mattress topper with the express purpose of adding firmness is always a bit tricky, because what’s firm to one person may be completely soft for someone else. With that in mind, there were a few specifics we looked at when assembling our list.

  • Material: Certain topper materials tended to hold firmness better than others. We found that oftentimes the variance in firmness of memory foam was ideal more times than not, because it added the proper amount of resistance without sacrificing comfort.
  • Breathability: Mattress toppers are usually bought in lieu of purchasing an entirely new mattress, and as a result they can be low-cost and made of artificial or synthetic materials. These materials tend to breathe poorly, so it was important to us to factor in how cool the topper kept through the night.
  • Convenience and Accessories: A firm mattress topper can be a great investment on its own, but including a quality cover that can be easily attached to a mattress is a great bonus. It also helps if the cover can be easily removed and washed.

Firm Mattress Topper Tips

Selecting the right mattress topper to achieve your desired firmness will largely be dependent on personal preference; what materials you like, how you sleep, etc. Here are some big things to consider:

  • Thickness: You really want to factor in the thickness of the mattress topper when determining what’s right for your needs. If you’re looking to cover an extremely soft mattress in order to firm it up, look at thicker toppers (four or more inches). If you only need a small change in firmness, you may be able to get away with a thinner topper (two or three inches).
  • Longevity: Odds are, if you’re opting for a mattress topper you’re avoiding buying a new mattress. That shouldn’t mean that you select something cheap and disposable. Investing in a high-quality mattress topper can pay off dividends in the long run.

Firm Mattress Topper Recap

Adding firmness to a soft mattress is no easy task. Typically toppers are used to soften too-firm mattresses. But, if done correctly, you’ll be able to achieve the firmness level of your dreams while extending the life of your existing mattress for the fraction of the price of a new mattress.

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Logan Block
Logan is the content director of Sleepopolis, which means he not only reviews new mattresses every week, but also curates all the comparisons, best of pages, and video guides on the site. He takes a straightforward, honest approach to his reviews and endeavors to give viewers an objective look at each new product he tries out. Logan has perfected his method by personally testing over 200 different mattresses, so he’s not only able to discern the overall vibe of a specific bed, but to contextualize its feel within the bed-in-a-box market as a whole. When he’s not hopping on a new bed or working with our editorial team to whip up an engaging sleep education guide, you can find him reading books on world history, walking his dog Pepper, or searching for the best cheeseburger in New York City.
Logan Block

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