Soft mattress toppers often get all the acclaim, but with so many plush options available, quality firm toppers are often overshadowed. However, depending on your body type and sleeping position, firm mattress toppers can provide much-needed comfort and support for a good night's sleep.
Back issues can be a common gripe, particularly as you get older. A firmer mattress pad could be the perfect addition to stiffen up a soft surface or reinvigorate an old mattress, offering more support and stability for folks with special posture needs. If you sleep on your stomach or back, having robust support is essential for spinal health, and a firm topper could help combat these issues.
Waking up with an achy lower back can be terrible for long-term health. Read on for our top-rated firm mattress toppers available to help ease your pain.
5 Top Rated Firm Mattress Toppers
Sleep on Latex Pure Green™ – Great Value
- 100% Natural Latex
- Extra-Firm Support
- Aerated For Temperature Control
- 3 Thickness Levels
- GREENGUARD Gold Certified
Sleep on Latex has set its standards pretty high. Its goal is to give its sleepers the best natural latex in the world. This brand only uses natural materials with no artificial fillers to ensure a safe and healthy sleeping space for its customers.
This product fits all the standard mattress sizes and comes in 1-inch, 2-inch, and 3-inch variations. This model is an excellent option for folks looking for exceptional value, as it offers a more competitive price than many competing brands.
Why do we love it?
- This topper was made for those who prefer to rest on a firm sleeping surface and provides great support.
- The product uses a unique production process, aerating the topper with holes; this helps the topper conform to the sleeper’s body and relieve body heat. Latex like this is known for sleeping exceptionally cool and being very responsive.
Plushbeds Natural Latex – Best Extra Firm
- 100% natural latex
- 4 Firmness Options
- 2 Thickness Options
- 5 Year Warranty
Plushbeds aims for quality support without compromising plush comfort. This brand uses latex harvested from 100% organic, naturally grown rubber trees, letting you sleep in peace knowing you’re resting on a quality, natural product.
The latex used in this product has been aerated to help it sleep cool and includes 2 inches of Talalay manufactured latex foam to provide evenly distributed pressure. PlushBeds’ topper comes in two thickness options and four firmness choices for ultimate comfort and customization. This topper is manufactured locally in the United States, abiding by strict manufacturing guidelines, regulations, and labor laws, letting your rest easy.
Why did it make our list?
- Plushbeds designed this top to be hypoallergenic and antimicrobial, making it easier for sensitive sleepers to fight off allergies, dust mites, and mildew; this should allow sleepers to have a more comfortable, healthier night's rest.
- Boasting certifications by OEKO-TEX Standard 100 and GreenGuard Gold, the topper provides the highest safety and manufacturing standards.
Avocado Vegan Topper – Best Organic
- Latex and Cotton Topper
- 2 Firmness Options
- Button-tufted design
- Vegan Certified by Vegan Action
- GOLS Organic Certified Latex
Natural and organic materials are growing in popularity as more individuals become educated on product materials. If you’re looking for a natural alternative or animal-friendly option, the Avocado Vegan Topper is a great option.
This 2-inch option comes in either a Plush and Firm setting and is made to fit on top of Queen, King, and California King mattresses. Adding this Firm option to the top of your bed could add the stability and support that back, combination, and stomach sleepers often require.
What makes it special?
- Avocado is one of the front-running brands of organic sleep. This product is made with 100% organic GOLS-certified Dunlop latex. Instead of wool, the mattress uses organic GOTS-certified cotton. These materials coupled together make for a comfortable, cool, and environmentally conscious sleep.
- Avocado offers free shipping, free returns and comes with a 10-year warranty for peace of mind.
Sealy Essentials – Best Washable Cover
- CertiPUR-US Certified Material
- Robust Support
- Two Firmness Options
- Sealy Temperature Control
- Washable Cover
This model includes the same comfortable and conforming materials included in Sealy mattresses. Unlike most options, this foam topper is advertised as being a firm sleeping surface. Sealy’s topper boasts top of the line support without sacrificing pressure relief and quality comfort.
The topper comes with a removable ComfortLoft Cover, a plush-knit, washable material that claims to be allergen resistant. Beneath this is the Sealy Support foam, a 3-inch material manufactured to help with spinal alignment and made to evenly distribute the sleeper's weight over the bed’s surface.
Why did it make our list?
- The Sealy is an ideal fit for folks who appreciate robust support and durability. This could include stomach sleepers as well as back sleepers who need more firm help for back support.
- To show their commitment to durability and top-notch quality, Sealy makes its Essentials model in the USA and is CertiPUR-US Certified.
AmericanMade – Budget Pick
- Open-Cell Polyurethane Foam
- Extra Firm Support
- 2 Thickness Options
- PURGreen certification
- Made in the USA
Just because you are on a smaller budget does not mean you can’t find a quality topper. AmericanMade is where an affordable price meets a comfortable night’s rest, thoughtfully crafted with 2-inches of dense polyurethane foam.
The AmericanMade topper is designed to respond well to pressure, relieve stress, and leave sleepers resting in a gentle cradle. Due to AmericanMade’s robust support, it could be an excellent choice for stomach sleepers who typically need more support in the hips to keep their lower back aligned with the rest of their body.
What makes it unique?
- AmericanMade is manufactured in the USA using environmentally conscious methods that make for a healthier and happier night’s sleep.
- The topper boasts a PURGreen certification, meaning it’s crafted with materials that are safe and free from harmful chemicals like ozone-depleting CFCs, PBDE fire retardants, lead, and mercury.
What is a Hard Topper / Pad?
A firm topper is going to provide some extra stability for a bed that is starting to feel too soft. These types of options can be a great resource for folks who are sleeping on a lumpy, sagging, or otherwise uncomfortable mattress. These products can give proper support to the hips, keeping them elevated and lined up with the rest of the body.
A firmer top can also help give shoppers a better surface to push off of, making these a good option for some combination sleepers who move around at night.
Different Material Types Available
These products can be made from a variety of different materials that should offer slightly different feels and firmness options.
This most commonly comes in two forms, Dunlop and Talalay. Both types are made from the rubber tree. These materials have a similar feel, what makes them different is how they are manufactured.
Latex has a springy sensation that is usually quite responsive and the density can vary, with some being ultra plush and others being exceptionally firm. These materials are often a more natural and healthy option, though it is important for those with latex allergies to exercise caution.
Also called viscoelastic foam or temper-material, this is a type of poly foam that is known for its conforming properties that leave sleepers in a “hug-like” cradle. This material was designed to distribute weight evenly over the surface of the bed, alleviating pressure in areas like the hips and shoulders.
This is probably the most common type of topper being used today. There are thousands of products online and in retail stores across the country selling these. Memory foam mattress toppers are considerably popular, but the feel will likely vary from brand to brand.
There are also a handful of additional materials being used to make these types of pads. This includes materials like bamboo, down, feather, polyfoam, as well as other types of materials.
Each type is going to have its own unique feel. A down top will typically provide a more plush experience, while a bamboo product will likely have a firmer feel that the shoppers reading this guide will enjoy.
Potential Pros and Cons
There are going to be some benefits of a hard topper but there are also some considerations to keep in mind as well.
- Can Provide Additional Support
As was stated before, adding this type of topper can give sleepers extra stability due to using firmer materials. This should be a great option for people who are sleeping on an unsupportive mattress. Having that extra support on top can help solve a handful of sleep-related problems.
- May Help Some Back Pain
Plan on visiting your chiropractor less after you find proper sleeping support. A firm top portion of the bed can give sleepers the alignment they have been dreaming of. Having proper support can help keep the body straight and your back healthy.
Check Out Our Full Guide: Top Mattress Pads for Back Pain
- Can Firm Up a Bed
There are far more soft toppers being sold than there are firm ones, so finding the right pick for you might require a little more diligent searching. A firm option is often a good choice for stomach sleepers, as they generally require more support for their hips.
Get More Info: How to Make a Mattress Firmer
- Can Be Too Hard for Side Sleepers
While a firm option might be good for stomach sleepers, side sleepers typically require the exact opposite feel. These folks often like a softer surface that can alleviate pain in their shoulders and hips. Some side sleepers might like a firm feel, but if you are in doubt it may be best to stay away.
Learn More: Best Bed Topper for Side Sleepers
- Can Exacerbate Back Pain
While a firm pad may help with back pain in some folks, it can make it worse in others. It is important to know your body type as this will generally affect how the bed feels. Lighter individuals may like something a little softer, while heavier people might enjoy the firmer feel.
Frequently Asked Questions
What sizes are available?
The following is the standard product sizes and their correlating dimensions:
- Twin: 38 inches wide by 75 inches long
- Twin XL: 38 inches wide by 80 inches long
- Full: 53 inches wide by 75 inches long
- Queen: 60 inches wide and 80 inches long
- King: 76 inches wide by 80 inches long
- California King: 72 inches wide by 84 long
Whatever your reason may be for needing a more supportive top, one of the options listed above will likely get the job done. If none of these options fit your needs, know that there are thousands of options listed online and a ton of resources to help you get there.
If you need to do more research on toppers be sure to check out our top-rated mattress toppers list for this year or some of our other pages that have in-depth product reviews and guides to specific materials.
Your best night’s sleep could be just a few clicks away. Happy shopping!