Whether you simply prefer to sleep on a firm bed or you're looking for a way to ease back, neck, leg, or joint pain, then investing in one of the best firm mattress toppers can be an affordable, yet effective, alternative to shelling out thousands of dollars on a new mattress. But even though a mattress topper is less expensive than a mattress, it's not necessarily cheap. So, there are a few things you should keep in mind when choosing the right one for your bed.
You can find firm mattress toppers made from a variety of materials, including memory foam, latex, and polyurethane foam, all of which are included on this list. Memory foam continues to be a popular option, and though there are variables to consider when attempting to find a firm topper. The general rule is to opt for one that has a density of between 4 and 5 pounds per cubic feet, which tends to be a lot firmer. The height of your topper may also play a role — with those that measure between 3 and 5 inches proving to be more firm — but this isn't always the case.
Latex mattress toppers are another great option. Unlike memory foam, they're measured in density, or indentation load deflection (IDL for short). The lower the IDL number on your latex mattress topper, say 12, the less firm your topper. A topper that ranges between 40 and 50 IDL (and there's a highly rated one on this list) is considered to be super firm and amazing for your back.
This list of firm mattress toppers includes options for sweaty sleepers, budget-conscious shoppers, and anyone who prefers a really (really) firm mattress topper. Snag one and sleep better.
1. The Overall Best Firm Mattress Topper
Sleep Innovations 4-Inch Dual Layer Mattress Topper
With 4-inch layers of quilted fiber fill and memory foam, this mattress topper is one of the densest you’ll find, but it’s also soft and comfortable — it won’t feel like you’re sleeping on bricks. It boasts more than 2,400 amazing reviews because it relieves pressure on our joints, neck, and back and is therapeutic, even for people who say they suffer from major chronic pain like fibromyalgia.
The topper combines gel memory foam with supportive fiber fill and tops it off with a washable quilted cover. It doesn’t have straps to hold it in place, but reviewers say it’s a solid topper that won’t slip and slide. If you’re into the idea of a firmer mattress topper, but don’t want to go too extreme, this is a solid medium-firm choice that will help alleviate aches and pains.
2. The Best Firm Mattress Topper For Hot Sleepers
ViscoSoft 3-Inch Gel Memory Foam Mattress Topper
The thicker and denser a memory foam mattress topper, the more firm it generally feels — and this 3.5-inch gel memory foam mattress topper certainly fits that description. But it also solves one major dilemma a lot of people have when it comes to memory foam: instead of retaining heat and making sweaty sleepers even hotter, this topper has a ventilated design and gel infused into the topper that distributes body heat more easily and allows for better airflow.
The topper comes with a removable, washable, hypoallergenic bamboo cover and four adjustable straps to keep it in place. It’s offered in six sizes, including Twin XL.
Aside from its cooling benefits, you won’t sink into this mattress, which is a huge selling point and helps to make it a great choice if you have back pain.
3. The Best Affordable Firm Mattress Topper
AmericanMade Polyurethane Foam Mattress Topper
Designed with 3 inches of firm and supportive polyurethane foam, this mattress topper doesn’t conform to your body like memory foam, but many reviewers say it’s even more supportive. There’s absolutely no sagging or sinking, nor will you have to deal with the common chemical smell that you can sometimes detect from memory foam.
The big draw here, aside from the fact that this topper has stellar reviews, many of which come from people who deal with chronic pain, is the affordable price. It’s rare to find a topper that hover around $100 and this one proves supportive and naturally cooling (giving it another brownie point over notoriously hot memory foam).
4. An Extra-Firm Latex Mattress Topper
Pure Green 100% Natural Latex Mattress Topper
This latex mattress topper has a firmness rating of 44 ILD (latex density), making it an extremely firm choice and one that beats out most memory foam options in terms of firmness. Another benefit of choosing latex is that it is naturally ventilated, breathable, and cooling. This 2-inch topper is a great choice for anyone who wants that firmness, but doesn’t necessarily need it to come with 3 to 4 inches of height.
Countless reviewers say this topper is amazing at addressing back and neck pain — and if you're not a fan of memory foam, it's the perfect alternative.
5. An Extra-Firm Memory Foam Mattress Topper
Memory Foam Solutions Visco Elastic Memory Foam Mattress Topper
You’re going to have to pay a little more for this really firm memory foam mattress topper, but reviewers say it’s magic if you have a bad back, and that it resembles an actual mattress more than a topper (and that it’s worth every penny). This is the heaviest topper, weighing 5 pounds per cubic feet (6 pounds is usually the limit and those are difficult to find). It consists of 3 inches of Visco elastic memory foam, which feels springy and conforms to your body, but also cradles it in a firm, supportive way — you aren’t going to sink into this mattress topper.
Keep in mind: this is just a topper. It doesn’t come with a removable, washable cover, so be aware that this may be a separate investment you'll need to make. Another downside is that this isn’t a cooling mattress topper by any standards. It retains heat, which is fine if you live in a colder climate or aren’t a sweaty sleeper, but may not be the most comfortable choice if you prefer to sleep cool.
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