​Mattress Topper v New Mattress: Which One Do You Need?

Posted by Emma Carlton - Buying and Merchandising Manager on 16th Apr 2024

​Mattress Topper v New Mattress: Which One Do You Need?

When it come to buying a new mattress it can be difficult to know where to begin. For a start, there’s a whole variety of  different kinds of mattresses to pick from – pocket sprunglatexmemory foam. And then there’s all the features you’ll need to consider – edge support, cooling layers, fabric treatments. And as if it wasn’t all enough of a minefield already there are now mattress toppers to consider too. Could you get away with simply adding a topper to your existing mattress? Or buying a basic mattress and pairing it with a fancy topper? It’s could be something to consider if your current mattress isn’t working out after all.

If you’ve got yourself worked up into a mattress topper/new mattress decision-making tizzy (we know it’s all too easily done) why not let us help take some of the stress out of your shopping trip with our guide to mattresses and mattress toppers?

Mattress Topper or New Mattress: How to Tell When It’s Time to Update Your Bed

Bad back? Struggling to get comfortable at night? Feeling every lump and bump in that bed? It might be time to bite the bullet…

How old is too old for a mattress?

Most of us are guilty of stretching a mattress well beyond its useable life but what’s the magic number when it comes to replacing your bed? Well, it all depends on the type of mattress you sleep on and how much use it gets.Generally you’ll need to start thinking about trading in your old mattress after seven to ten yearsi. However, foam and lower quality sprung mattresses may wear out faster, while latex mattresses, which offer excellent longevity, may keep you comfortable and supported for a little longer.

As well as expected lifespan it’s worth considering usage. Those with heavier body types may find they need to replace their mattress more regularly. And if a bed doesn’t get regular use, because it’s in a guest room for example, it’s likely to last much longer.

Look out for mattress damage and signs of wear

Can’t remember when you purchased your bed? Or get the feeling it’s ready for the scrap heap well before it’s expected life’s end? There are a few indications that can let you know it’s time for a change. Broken springs are a sure sign that your bed has given up the ghost, making bedtime particularly uncomfortable. A sagging mattress is also a big clue that it’s time to call it a day while noisy bed springs are also a screeching signpost that a bed is past its best.

Stains and tears in the surface of your mattress are clear signs that you may need to invest in a new bed too.  Stains can be an indication of dampness and mould growing on or inside the mattress, while rips are often accompanied by damage to the bed’s internal build.

How your body tells you it's time for a new mattress

When your mattress’ springs are no longer springing, your body won’t be getting the support it needs. When this happens you may start to develop aches and pains or find that you’re not sleeping as well as you normally would. You may also find that you’re simply not sleeping as well, waking through the night to shift positions or finding it hard to get comfortable in the first place. In fact, it may be the case that you suddenly start sleeping more soundly at a friend’s house or when staying in hotels, a good indication that those sleep problems lie close to home. In addition, asthma and allergy flare-ups can be caused by an old mattress that needs to be replaced.

Can a Mattress Topper Revive Your Old Mattress?

A mattress topper is, generally speaking, a cheaper alternative to a whole new mattress, but can it really help you to get a few more years out of your old bed without breaking the bank?

A mattress topper can add a comfort layer

Picked a mattress that’s never quite worked out for you? If your bed is well and truly out of its comfort guarantee, or if it never came with one, you might feel as if you’re stuck tolerating less than perfect nights. This doesn’t have to be the case. The very best mattress topper could help to totally transform a bed that isn’t right. A high qualitymemory foam topper or latex-made firm mattress topper, for example, can help to take the pressure off of sore joints with their contouring performance. A cosy and plush soft topper, meanwhile, may help you to get a better night’s sleep on a mattress that was previously too hard for your liking. And if you find that you’re getting too hot overnight? Seek out a cooling mattress topper that offers temperature balancing action through the addition of airholes or a cool comfort gel or fabric layer.

A mattress topper could extend the life of your mattress

If your mattress is still in good condition, a mattress topper can be great way to help extend its life by a few more years. Giving you that extra layer of comfort where you most need it, the addition of a topper can help you to keep that mattress in service for longer than you might otherwise have tolerated. In addition, even a thin topper provides a convenient hygiene cover for your bed, keeping dust, and the mites that come with it, away from the interior of your mattress.

A mattress topper can’t fix an end of life mattress

A mattress topper may seem like the answer to all your prayers but unfortunately not even the best quality, thickest or priciest topper is going to fix a mattress that’s had its day. For the best possible night’s sleep and good spinal and joint health you need your whole bed to be working, from slats to top surface, giving you contouring, support and comfort. If your mattress is already sagging, has broken springs, is torn or squeaks and moans with every turn you make, even the best memory foam mattress topper is unlikely to improve the situation.

Mattress Topper vs New Mattress: Which Should You Choose?

A woman yawning and stretching in her bed after having a poor night's sleep.

Still torn between investing in a whole new mattress and simply popping a mattress topper on top of your existing bed? Here are just a few questions you should ask yourself:

How much life does your current mattress really have in it?

While a mattress topper can extend the life of your mattress, buying one can prove a false economy if your bed is likely to need replacing in just a year or two anyway. After all, if your current mattress is more than six years old, especially if it’s a sprung or memory foam mattress, it may be up for renewal very soon, which means you’re back to square one again in a year or two with a half-used topper to spare.

Can a mattress topper improve your sleep?

Sometimes a mattress simply doesn’t work out so it’s important to be realistic about your expectations when it comes to shopping for a mattress topper. If the mattress you’re sleeping on is far too soft or far too firm, if there’s something in the design that just hasn’t worked out for you, it could be that you’ll need to bite the bullet and invest in a whole new one. Usually a mattress topper will measure between 2” and 4” in thickness, which gives you only so much additional comfort.

What’s your new bed budget?

A mattress topper can be significantly less expensive than a whole new mattress. After all, they’re smaller items containing far less sleep technology. And so you may think that you’re doing your wallet a kindness by opting for a topper. However, a mattress topper will have a shorter lifespan than a mattress, lasting between three and five years on average, provided that it is well cared for. And of course, for a mattress topper to last as long as possible you’ll have to invest more in a higher quality design.

What are your bedroom plans?

When buying any new investment piece for your bedroom, whether it’s a new wardrobe, bed frame or mattress, you may want to consider where you see yourself being in another three, five or even ten years’ time. Don’t worry, this isn’t a job interview, but if you’re planning on a whole new king size bed in a couple of years you may want to give that brand new double mattress a miss. Perhaps a mattress topper, double bed size, will do for now? Or maybe it’s possible to make your current mattress last a little longer, leaving you with budget to invest in an even better king size when the time comes.

Mattress Toppers and New Mattresses: Top Shopping Tips

A person testing the responsiveness of the surface of their new mattress with their hand.

Whether shopping for a new mattress or a mattress topper, these top shopping tips could help make the whole process a little less stressful:

  • Do your research: get online and check out your options before hitting the showroom. While there’s a lot to be said for trying out beds instore a quick lie down on a display model won’t tell you everything you need to know about bed buying. Our Sleep Hub, chock-full of sleep and shopping advice, is a great place to start
  • Choose the right material for you: from memory foam to latex and springs, there’s a lot to choose from when it comes to a new mattress or mattress topper. For example, while latex is great if you have joint complaints, a softer topper might be a better choice for those who want to feel as if they’re sleeping on a cloud
  • Don’t scrimp on a new mattress: a new mattress is an investment most of us could do without making. But when you consider just how much of our lives we spend in our bed it’s easy to see why a good bed is worth saving up for. Budget carefully before you shop and don’t talk yourself into the cheaper options of a mattress topper when you know deep down a new mattress is really what’s required
  • Check for firmness: don’t just guess when it comes to mattress firmness, because one man’s soft as a feather is another’s brick wall. Pop into your local Bensons for Beds to take advantage of ourcleversleeppro system, which helps us to help you figure out your perfect firmness level for simpler mattress and topper shopping
  • Get advice: seek out the advice of sleep experts, online, on the phone and instore, to help you find the right bed setup for you. The knowledgeable team at Bensons for Beds, for example, can help to take the stress out of bed shopping with in-depth advice and the ability to answer just about any question you might have when it comes to night-time comfort
  • Enjoy guaranteed comfort: whether it’s a new mattress or a mattress topper, there’s really no guarantees until its in place and you’ve taken it for a true night-long test drive. That’s why it’s vital to make sure you’re covered with a no quibbles comfort guarantee. Bensons for Beds’ 40 Night Comfort Guarantee allows you to make a return if a mattress isn’t perfect

Time for a New Mattress? Look No Further Than Bensons for Beds!

When shopping for a new mattress or bed, you want to be sure that you’ve checked out all possible options. Here at Bensons for Beds we have a huge range of mattresses, including latex mattress designs, high tech hybrid beds, orthopaedic mattresses for bad back support, modern mattress-in-a-box products and much more besides, so you can be absolutely sure you haven’t missed a thing. And in addition to our Comfort Guarantee, we also offer a five year bed guarantee, so you’re covered if anything goes wrong, as well as Bed Guard, an optional care plan that protects your bed against the high cost of accidental damage.

Want to talk new mattresses? Got questions you need answered? Ready to start shopping? Call us on 0808 144 6160 or drop into your nearest Bensons for Beds showroom today.

authors profile
Emma Carlton
Buying and Merchandising Manager
Emma has worked at Bensons for Beds for 10 years and is a fundamental part of the Bensons’ team, her wealth of breadth and knowledge is invaluable. Emma’s drive, determination, and tenacity ensures we provide our customers with the market leading products to suit our customer individual needs, at great value prices.
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