Do I need a mattress pad or mattress protector for my mattresses? This is by far one of the most common questions I receive from clients, and it’s long overdue for an answer post.
A mattress pad is a relatively thick piece of quilted material that sits on top of your mattress, but below your sheet. A mattress pad can help to protect your mattress to some degree from general wear and tear, and help reduce allergens, but in general, you’d purchase a mattress pad just to add comfort to your mattress. The primary reason I would suggest buying a mattress pad is that you’re unhappy with your current mattress and a mattress pad can be a nice short term solution to add comfort to an older or uncomfortable mattress. If you’re buying a brand new mattress, whether it’s foam, innerspring, or otherwise, there is really no need to purchase a mattress pad.
A mattress protector also sits directly on the surface of your mattress, but below your sheets. It’s similar to a fitted sheet in the way it covers the mattress. They are generally made from cotton, polyester, or other materials, and are designed to help repel liquid and prevent other sources of damage (dirt, dust, allergens, etc). The most common use for a mattress protector is simply as a liquid resistant protector.
In the event you were to spill a drink, have an accident-prone child or pet, the mattress protector will help to ensure your expensive mattress stays fresh, clean, and unspoiled for longer.
I would highly recommend a mattress protector to anyone who is purchasing a new mattress or already owns a mattress without a mattress protector. They are an inexpensive way to ensure your mattress stays nice for years. Most mattress protectors are fairly thin. They don’t have to be thick to do their job if they are made well. As such, they have very little impact in terms of the feel and comfort of the mattress they are on. Remember that mattress protector, such as those described above do not exempt from the requirement of cleaning the mattress at least once a year. It helps you to avoid various accidents, but to be sure of the cleanliness of the place where you spend 1/3 of your life you should plan your periodic cleaning.
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