How Long Does a Memory Foam Mattress Topper Last?

Published
by Max Stevens

mattress in a bedroom with 2 hanging side lights
Photo by Max Vakhtbovych on Pexels.

Memory foam mattress toppers last between 3-5 years depending on a variety of factors, including: quality of materials used, memory foam type, aggressive brand marketing, shipping logistics and more.

But, what influences a memory foam mattress topper lifespan:

  • Does memory foam increase lifespan?  
  • How many years do memory foam mattress toppers actually last?
  • Why do you need to care about memory foam mattress topper maintenance?

If these questions go unanswered, asking for a replacement or refund is normally a massive hassle.

Not to mention, if you return the item because you think it won’t last the few years you want, you will miss out on the benefits of using a memory foam mattress topper.  

So to help you out, we’ve prepared a guide that will answer your question about how long your memory foam mattress topper will last. Read on below to know the facts about your topper’s longevity.

How Long Does a Memory Foam Mattress Topper Last?

The memory foam mattress topper market is poised to rise at an exponential 30% to 60% in the next 10 years. With that in mind, many memory foam mattress topper users will probably ask themselves if memory foam toppers really last long.

To directly answer that, let’s refer to the actual lifespan of a memory foam mattress topper.

Memory Foam Mattress Topper Lifespan

Memory foam mattress toppers typically last between 3-5 years. This range is just for memory foam toppers on the more expensive end of the spectrum.  

So if you’ve bought a super cheap memory foam mattress topper, you’ll have to make sure to maintain it properly to get the most out of it. Low-quality memory foam mattress toppers may only probably last for 1-2 years.

The real downside is that these low-quality toppers often do not have warranties. Why? Normally, they’re poorly made, so the manufacturers want to save some money.

Memory foam mattress toppers lifespan varies greatly on factors such as regular usage, quality materials, brand marketing and more.

But, what can you do to make them last longer?

What Factors Affect Memory Foam Topper Longevity?

A memory foam mattress topper wouldn’t just give up and say “I’m done” when it’s not in use. The following usage-related factors affect your memory foam mattress topper’s longevity:

Mattress Topper Thickness  

Your memory foam mattress topper’s thickness can influence its overall lifespan. Are you wondering why? It all boils down to your memory foam mattress topper’s core.

Thick mattress toppers are built with thick and rigid cores that support the overall structure of the topper. These durable cores also support your weight, which contributes to the longevity of the mattress topper.

To simplify things further, the thicker the mattress topper, the longer it will be of good use to you and your loved ones. But if you have a thin mattress topper, don’t expect it to last longer than thicker ones.

If you’re wondering what’s considered thick, 3-4 inches (7.62-10.16 cm) are the thick ones. While 1-2 inches (2.54-5.08 cm) are the thinner ones.

User’s Weight

Memory foam mattress toppers suffer from extra weight and pressure like any mattress topper type.

According to WHO (World Health Organization), more than 2 billion people worldwide are either overweight or obese. Have you given a thought about how your weight affects your bed with this fact in mind?

Extra weight places more pressure on the memory foam topper. Although there are no true weight limitations in foam-based mattresses and mattress toppers, it helps to know the ideal thickness for your respective weight.

To do this, we can segregate weight classes to memory foam mattress topper thickness:

  • For people under 70 kilograms, you can go for a 1-2 inches thick memory foam mattress topper.
  • For people beyond 70 kilograms but not topping at a hundred, you can go for a 3-4 inches thick mattress topper.
  • For people with weights topping 100 kilograms, you can go for a 4-inches thick mattress topper.

As we mentioned earlier, thicker mattress toppers can support more weight because of their thicker and more rigid cores. So, what does this mean? If you’re a heavyweight sleeper over 105kg, please keep this in mind.

Mattress Topper Usage Frequency

How often you use your memory foam mattress topper influences how your topper will last. This is the concept we all know as wear and tear.

To understand usage frequency factors, here are some helpful questions that aim to understand your topper’s usage frequency:

  • How many people use it? One or two?
  • Is it used every night or is it for guest room use?
  • How about the weight of the users? Are they a little bit overweight?

Usage frequencies are also relevant in this COVID era as most of the world was forced to work from home as part of quarantine lockdowns. Some have their own dedicated workstations, while some love to work while lying down in their beds.

These instances cause your memory foam mattress topper to be short-lived. After all, you’re using it while you sleep, and you’re also using it while you work.

Aside from working from home, the length of your sleep is also a factor (since mattress toppers are part of your bed anyways). Some people sleep short, averaging from 6 to 7 hours of sleep, while some are heavy sleepers who last 10 hours and above sleeping.

The more you use your memory foam mattress topper, the shorter its lifespan.

Mattress Topper Proper Care & Maintenance

Memory foam mattress toppers need maintenance. But the million-dollar question is, are you doing it?

Regular cleaning may result in your memory foam mattress topper lasting longer than its warranty period.

But if you’re not a fan of bed maintenance, then most likely your memory foam mattress topper may have a shorter lifespan.

Prolong your memory foam mattress topper’s lifespan by maintaining it carefully and consistently. And if you don’t know how to, here are some tips:

  • Use a mattress topper protector (these are usually waterproof fabrics that you put on the topmost layer of your bed)
  • Avoid eating and drinking in bed (since people can often be clumsy, right?)
  • Always look for manufacturer’s labels (those little tags are a memory foam mattress topper lifesaver!) 

When to Replace Your Memory Foam Mattress Topper?

You will need to replace your memory foam mattress topper when you notice the following Wondering when to replace your memory foam mattress topper? Here are telltale signs that you already need to replace your current mattress topper:

  • Irremovable stain (yellow stains are caused by sweat, urine, and food and drinks that has a yellowish tint)
  • Uneven surfaces (which can cause back pain and/or back soreness)
  • Foam doesn’t go back to its normal shape (a memory foam topper should be able to bounce back to its normal shape within a few seconds)
  • Smell that won’t go away
  • Holes and cuts on the fabric

Frequently Asked Questions

Does Sleep Position Influence Mattress Topper Lifespan?

If you’re sleeping in a sideways position all the time, then other parts and surfaces of your memory foam mattress topper would be completely unbothered by your weight and pressure.

We can link this up to wear and tear: the more you use it, the shorter its life will be. The only difference is that unused surfaces (because you sleep in a particular position) will be completely fine. In contrast, the surfaces you frequently use will see obvious signs of wear and tear.

To further understand the concept, let’s think of it this way: imagine a bulletproof vest gets shot by a single round of pistol fire, one surface area would be damaged while the other areas around it would still be completely fine. We hope this analogy makes sense.

As for the specific sleeping positions, the combo sleeping position (all types of sleeping positions) is probably the most damaging position since it involves all sleeping positions in a single night.

The pressure of front and back positions covers more surface area than side sleepers, but the weight and pressure are evenly distributed in a large surface area.

Meanwhile, side sleepers don’t cover as much surface area but the weight and pressure are concentrated on that small surface which can degrade prematurely while the area around it is totally fine.

Does The Type of Memory Foam Affect Its Longevity?

No, memory foam mattress topper lifespan is uniform across all the types, including ‘gel’ memory foam and ‘dual-layer’ memory foam toppers.  

A gel memory foam mattress topper contains cooling beads with gel inside (hence the name). These cooling beads cool down your body during sleep since memory foam retains heat, allowing hot sleepers to sleep cool.

Meanwhile, a dual-layer memory foam mattress topper has two layers: one being the memory foam layer and one being a fiberfill one. Some manufacturers join the two: one side is gel-infused memory foam, and the other is the fiberfill one.

All types of memory foam use memory foam as the comfort layer (the side you lie down on), so their longevity would be uniform even with their own unique features.

What affects longevity is not features but the memory foam mattress topper’s density. Denser mattress toppers with 5 pounds per cubic feet of density are unarguably more durable and long-lasting since air gaps are virtually nonexistent.

Just pure foam that supports your entire weight. The downside is denser toppers are not good for hot sleepers since denser memory foams retain more heat than less dense memory foams.

How Does Memory Foam Compare to Other Types In Terms of Longevity?

Foam-based mattress toppers are consistently ranked as the toppers with the longest lifespans. So this includes memory foam mattress toppers.

For comparison, these are the mattress topper types as well as their respective lifespans:

Memory foam mattress toppers commonly last for 3-5 years.
Latex foam mattress toppers commonly last for 3-4 years.
Polyfoam mattress toppers commonly last for 1-2 years.
Down and feather mattress toppers commonly last for 1-2 years.
Wool mattress toppers commonly last for 3-5 years.

These are approximate time ranges. Your mattress topper can outlive its average lifespan and intended warranty period through careful maintenance practices.

Source/s:

  • Xiao, Yijing; Becerik-Gerber, Burcin DDes; Lucas, Gale PhD; Roll, Shawn C. PhD Impacts of Working From Home During COVID-19 Pandemic on Physical and Mental Well-Being of Office Workstation Users, Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine: March 2021 – Volume 63 – Issue 3 – p 181-190 doi: 10.1097/JOM.0000000000002097
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AUTHOR

Max Stevens

Chief Editor here at The Sleep Checklist. Suffered from a seemingly infinite knot in my thoracic area (between the spine and shoulder blade) due to my lifelong side sleeping habits. With my girlfriend, we look to provide the most relevant and best mattress advice.