9 Best Cooling Mattress Toppers of 2024

9 Best Cooling Mattress Toppers of 2024

Photo: Marcus McDonald

A new topper is one of the easiest ways to change the feel of your mattress. However, if you tend to sleep warm, you’ll need one specifically designed to help you stay cool so solving one problem (making your bed more comfortable or supportive) won’t create another by causing you to overheat.

To curate this guide to the best cooling mattress toppers, I looked for toppers that incorporate cooling agents like gel, copper, or graphite infusions into foam and that have covers made from breathable or cooling fabric or materials, including phase-change materials, which absorb heat to help regulate your body temperature. I took note of features that promote airflow, like perforations in a topper’s foam or mesh panels in its cover. I generally sought out latex foam over memory foam as it typically stays cooler. Finally, I included a few covers and toppers that are solely focused on temperature regulation and use air or water to cool the surface of the bed but don’t alter the feel of the mattress as a traditional topper does. The recommendations below include toppers tested and recommended by Strategist staffers as well as recommendations from sleep experts.

[Editor’s Note: All prices are for a queen-size topper unless otherwise noted.]

The filling of your mattress topper ultimately determines how cooling it can be. If you’re primarily looking for pressure relief and support, latex foam is my top choice for a cooling mattress topper because it offers a similar feel to memory foam but without as much heat retention (memory foam tends to absorb body heat and is often too dense to allow for much airflow). However, latex feels more springy and less sink-y than memory foam and doesn’t mold around the body as much. So if you are committed to the more contoured, enveloping feel of memory foam, you’ll want to choose a topper with gel, graphite, or another known cooling agent to help prevent you from overheating. The format of the fill is also important: Shredded or chopped foam will allow for more airflow than a solid slab.

Alternatively, a fiber mattress topper filled with cotton or polyester can add softness to a firm bed while counteracting the heat retention of a foam mattress. Each material has its pros and cons; having a clear idea of what you want from your mattress topper can help you decide on the best material for you. And while many brands tout the cooling benefits of their mattress toppers, Michael Grandner, director of the Sleep and Health Research Program at the University of Arizona, says to keep in mind that few scientific studies prove any one material or technology is superior for keeping cool.

Whether you’re shopping for mattress toppers, sheets, or pillows, you will inevitably encounter all kinds of promises about how a product will help to regulate your temperature. Cooling is more of an umbrella term that can refer to a variety of components, or even to how a mattress topper is assembled, so it can come from moisture-wicking materials like wool, bamboo, or Tencel; heat-absorbing or phase-change materials like gel, copper, or graphite; tangible features like ventilation holes; or a combination of all three. Some materials make a mattress topper feel cooler to the touch while others work to regulate your temperature as you sleep. Additionally, some tech-powered cooling toppers use water- or air-filled tubes throughout to offer precise temperature control. However, these “smart” toppers often don’t alter the firmness or feel of the mattress, focusing solely on temperature control.

Mattress toppers range in thickness, usually between one and five inches, and can add extra height, firmness, plushness, or pressure relief. Thinner toppers, under two inches, will add less noticeable comfort, while thicker toppers, three inches and up, can totally transform the feel of a mattress.

It’s pretty common for mattress toppers to be returnable, so we have noted the length of the trial period and any warranty details for each topper below. But be sure to read the fine print: Companies that offer 100-night trials on mattresses don’t always offer the same terms on toppers, and return policies may vary depending on whether you buy the topper directly from the brand or from a third-party retailer like Amazon.

ViscoSoft 4-Inch Active Cooling Memory-Foam Mattress Topper, Queen

Cooling components: Copper-infused memory foam | Thickness: Four inches | Trial and warranty: 90-day money-back guarantee, five-year warranty

Memory foam is by far one of the most common materials used in mattress toppers. And though the material has a reputation for trapping heat, according to two of the 13 experts we talked to, this ViscoSoft topper stays surprisingly cool. It’s infused with copper, a common cooling agent intended to draw heat away from the body, and its exterior contains phase-change material, which, in my experience, is one of the most effective components to look for in a cooling sleep product. Phase-change material is something of a jargony umbrella term for particles or fibers encapsulated within a mattress topper or other bedding that literally change from solid to liquid depending on the surrounding temperature. “When you’re hot, the material liquifies” to absorb heat to keep you cool, and when you’re cool, “the material solidifies, trapping in the heat,” explains Joshua Tal, a psychologist specializing in sleep disorders.

With four inches of material to sink into, this topper is among the thicker options on this list, to ensure it delivers on cushioning and comfort. It has a machine-washable cover, which I appreciate since memory foam is spot-clean only. The cover also has adjustable straps on all four corners to keep the topper secured in place. The biggest con for this topper is the price; $350 for a queen size is fairly expensive for a memory-foam mattress topper. But with a nice balance between comfort and cooling — plus a 90-day return policy, one of the most generous in this guide — it’s our pick for the best cooling mattress topper overall.

Nest Bedding Cooling Topper

Cooling components: Temperature-responsive foam | Thickness: Two inches | Trial and warranty: 30-night trial, two-year warranty

This cooling topper from Nest Bedding costs almost $100 less than our top pick at full price, though it has a much shorter trial period. It comes recommended by Bill Fish, president of Sleep Doctor, who says this cushy topper is more responsive to pressure than other memory-foam toppers he has tried and is designed to feel similar to latex. It’s the same memory foam that tops Nest’s mattresses, including the Sparrow Signature Hybrid mattress that our kitchen-and-dining writer, Emma Wartzman, says relieved her of the “back and neck pain that I was waking up with every morning.” The topper’s cover is made with phase-change material to help regulate your body temperature. Just note that the cover isn’t machine washable, and you’ll have to spot-clean it.

At two inches thick, the Nest Bedding Cooling Topper doesn’t allow as much room to sink into the foam as the ViscoSoft. But that may be preferable for those who want just a little more softness, rather than fully feeling cocooned by foam. This topper also has straps on each corner to secure it to the bed.

ViscoSoft Select High Density Mattress Topper

Cooling components: Gel-infused foam | Thickness: Three inches or four inches | Trial and warranty: 90-day money-back guarantee, five-year warranty

Also made by ViscoSoft, this topper is a good choice for a classic memory-foam feel with minimal heat. It’s made with high-density, gel-infused foam. I like high-density foam because it’s usually more durable and supportive as it has a higher weight per cubic foot. The gel infusions are intended to draw heat away from the body. For an added cooling touch, the topper has a temperature-regulating, moisture-wicking bamboo-rayon cover — which has straps on each corner, too.

When I tested this topper, the foam felt firm at first, but the longer I lay on it, the more deeply I sank into it. It contoured around me and provided excellent pressure relief. On my side, I especially liked how well it cushioned my shoulder — I tend to feel my shoulder jamming up easily when I lie on my side, but this topper prevented that. As far as cooling goes, this topper didn’t feel overly cool to the touch, but I didn’t feel it heating up around me excessively, which is sometimes all you can expect with memory foam. The slightly cool feel from the bamboo cover and the gel infusions in the foam work together to keep the topper from overheating. One caveat on the gel infusions in this topper is that Strategist writer Jeremy Rellosa, who runs warm, has noticed they are quite susceptible to the temperature in his bedroom, becoming firmer in cold weather and softer when it’s hot. “Sometimes, it feels a little too plush when it’s warm,” Rellosa explains, despite the high-density foam.

Saatva Graphite Memory Foam Mattress Topper

Cooling components: Graphite-infused memory foam | Thickness: Three inches | Trial and warranty: 180-day trial period, one-year limited warranty

Graphite is another common bedding material used to draw heat away from the body. This topper from Saatva — the maker of our favorite mattress — uses graphite-infused memory foam to create a plush but not too hot topper. When I tested it, I loved how thick and dense the foam felt. It contoured around my body with a nice balance of cushioning and support — I didn’t sink in quite as much as I did on the ViscoSoft High-Density topper. This one doesn’t feel cool to the touch, but it also didn’t feel noticeably hot. I like that on top of the graphite infusions, this topper has a breathable organic-cotton cover with straps to secure it in place on your mattress. However, I wish the cover were removable and washable instead of spot-clean only. On the plus side, Saatva offers a very generous 180-day trial period with this topper, so you have plenty of time to decide whether you like it.

Layla Memory Foam Topper

Cooling components: Copper gel-infused memory foam | Thickness: Two inches | Trial and warranty: 30-day trial period, five-year warranty

This two-inch topper from Layla features the same copper gel-infused foam used in Layla’s mattresses. Strategist writer Tembe Denton-Hurt sleeps on the Layla Hybrid mattress and says she and her partner never overheat.

While this topper is on the thinner side compared with others on this list, it has fairly dense foam, with a 2.5-pound density level. When I tested it, I sank into the foam quite slowly — it molded around my body the longer I lay on it, ultimately providing excellent pressure relief. As with the ViscoSoft High-Density topper, I felt hugged by this one, but the effect was lessened by the foam’s thinness (two inches versus three or four inches). Because the foam is dense in this topper, it will take a minute for your body to settle into it. Like the other toppers with infusions for cooling, the Layla topper didn’t feel noticeably cool, but I didn’t feel overheated.

Additionally, I like that this topper has a removable cover with straps, but Layla does recommend dry-cleaning the topper’s cover to maintain the softness, which is a little inconvenient.

PlushBeds Natural Latex Topper
Very Good Deal

Cooling components: Open-cell latex | Thickness: Two inches or three inches | Trial and warranty: Not returnable, five-year warranty

Although generally more expensive than toppers made of memory foam or fiberfill, those made of latex foam are great options because they’re all-natural and long-lasting and — most important for cooling — allow for better air circulation. Latex is naturally responsive, offering a bouncier, less sink-y feel than memory foam. This topper from PlushBeds comes recommended by Fish because it’s available in five firmness levels, ranging from soft to extra firm, to easily customize the feel of your bed. Fish also likes this topper because the foam is punched with ventilation holes that allow for additional airflow. It comes in two thicknesses: either two or three inches. While this topper is pricey, it’s on par with similar latex toppers and is certified by the Global Organic Latex Standard, meaning it is pure natural latex. Cheaper latex toppers often use synthetic latex, which is derived from petrochemicals rather than rubber trees and can feel less springy than natural latex.

For an additional cost, you can add an organic-cotton cover — which shouldn’t add any heat since cotton is a breathable fabric. Unfortunately, these toppers are not returnable, so you should be ready to commit if you’re going to go for it.

Eight Sleep Pod Cover

Cooling components: App-controlled temperature-regulating pad | Thickness: Approximately one inch | Trial and warranty: 30-night trial period, two-year limited warranty

While not exactly a mattress topper, the Eight Sleep Pod Cover does allow you to completely control the temperature of your mattress. The app-controlled cover goes over your mattress like a mattress protector and connects to a small water tank; internal tubing in the cover circulates water through the whole system to cool or heat the bed to a temperature of your choosing between 55 and 110 degrees Fahrenheit. You can even control each side of the bed independently — a great feature for couples with different temperature preferences. The Pod Cover doesn’t add cushioning or dramatically change the feel of your mattress (except potentially giving it a slightly firmer feel since the encasement is fairly tight), but I was impressed with how effective the temperature-control system is. With the app, you can set the temperature — the dial ranges between -10 and +10, corresponding to approximately 55 to 110 degrees in 2.75-degree increments. Initially, I tried setting the dial to either extreme just to see how warm or cold it could get. While it took several minutes to reach the desired temperatures, the change to hot or cold was very noticeable. The -10 was far colder than I would want to sleep on; I preferred keeping the temperature around -1 or -2 (about 79 degrees), which sounds warm but still provided a cooling effect given that most people’s body temperatures hover around 97 or 98 degrees. Two other Strategist staffers tested earlier versions of the Eight Sleep Pod and had similar experiences with the effectiveness of the temperature controls. Thankfully, none of us felt the tubing much through the cover, which was one of my main concerns when I first set it up.

In addition to cooling and heating, the Pod Cover can track sleep-health metrics like your heart rate and sleep stages. It also has vibration and thermal alarms, and you can enable automatic temperature adjustments to keep your body temperature stable throughout the night. These are all accessible through the app and a membership program called Autopilot. This program costs $24 a month and is required for the first 12 months you own the Pod Cover; after that, you can cancel the membership and still use the temperature-control functionality without the added features.

The two main cons of this product are the maintenance and the price. Setting up the Pod Cover is a little tedious, and it requires consistent cleaning; you must periodically run a lengthy process called priming, in which water is pushed through the tubing to push out air bubbles. This took about three hours when I set up the Pod Cover and must be repeated every few months. At over $2,000 (plus a $24 monthly subscription for at least the first year), this product is obviously not a budget-friendly choice. But it does actively cool your mattress in a way a traditional topper isn’t capable of.

Chilipad by Sleep.Me Cube Sleep System

Cooling components: Remote-controlled temperature-regulating pad | Thickness: Not listed | Trial and warranty: 30-night trial, two-year limited warranty

The Chilipad Cube, like the Eight Sleep Pod Cover, isn’t a traditional mattress topper and doesn’t add much cushioning or softness to a mattress. This mesh mattress pad is also lined with water-filled tubes and connects to a power unit that cools or heats the water to a steady temperature. It can be set to an exact temperature anywhere from 55 to 115 degrees by using the provided remote control. The Chilipad comes recommended by three experts, including occupational therapist and sleep consultant Annie Schlecht, who suggests it to her clients who really struggle with nighttime temperature regulation.

The Chilipad system comes in two versions: Me or We. The Me version comes with one Cube control unit, covers half the bed, and is designed for use by a single person; the We version comes with two Cube control units and comes with a pad that covers the entire bed. The biggest difference between this system and the Eight Sleep definitely seems to lie in all the extra features Eight Sleep offers (sleep tracking, automatic adjustments, vibration alarms, app controls, and so on). If none of these matters to you, the Chilipad is considerably less expensive — the “We” version that covers the entire bed is about half the price of the Eight Sleep.

Perfectly Snug The Smart Topper

Cooling components: App-controlled fan cooling | Thickness: Approximately one inch | Trial and warranty: 30-day risk free trial, one-year limited warranty

Similar to the hydro-powered toppers above, the Perfectly Snug Smart Topper is tech-enabled and customizable so you can warm or cool your mattress to your desired temperature. Instead of water, however, the Smart Topper uses warm or cool air that is pushed through the topper by mini-fans in the corners or at the foot of the topper depending on which size you get. There is also a heating option powered by the same fans in the way a space heater would work, which is nice for preheating your bed before hopping in.

With the app, you set the temperature range you would like (ranging from 10 to negative 10) and the topper automatically adjusts throughout the night to help your body maintain a preset baseline temperature. The brand does not offer exact heating and cooling temps, so you’ll need to experiment with the settings to find one that works for you. Strategist contributor and beauty writer Cheryl Kramer Kaye says that, while pricey, the Perfectly Snug topper has helped her stay asleep instead of waking up in her own personal swamp, particularly when dealing with sleep-disrupting menopausal hot flashes. For extra-hot nights, there’s a burst button that triggers five additional minutes of cooling air, and each side of the topper has its own temperature-control capabilities, which is handy if you share your sleeping space. The Perfectly Snug topper is designed not to alter the feel of your mattress, but the brand says it might make ultrasoft beds feel slightly firmer.

• Joe Auer, founder of Mattress Clarity
• Logan Block, former director of content at Sleepopolis
• Keith Cushner, senior vice-president of Sleep Doctor
• Bill Fish, president of Sleep Doctor
• Michael Grandner, director of the Sleep and Health Research Program at the University of Arizona
• Cheryl Kramer Kaye, Strategist contributor and beauty writer
• Latifah Miles, former Strategist writer
• Sarah Riccio, former senior writer at Sleepopolis
• David Rubin, director of product testing at Sleep Doctor
• Annie Schlecht, occupational therapist and sleep consultant
• Joshua Tal, psychologist specializing in sleep disorders
• Heather Turgeon, psychotherapist and author of The Happy Sleeper
• JD Velilla, founder of Designing Sleep and former head of sleep experience at Tuft & Needle

Additional reporting by Karen Iorio Adelson, Latifah Miles, and Lauren Ro.

Update on June 26, 2024: Updated prices and checked stock for all products.

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