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Waking up with back pain is an unwelcome but unfortunate reality that affects a significant portion of the population. Back pain can be amplified or even caused by an unsupportive or worn-out mattress. Adding a mattress topper to your bed is an easy way to make it more comfortable, supportive, and durable. It’s also an affordable way to get a different firmness level without having to buy an entirely new mattress.

Each topper on this list scored highly during our sleep lab testing and worked well for members of our team that experience back pain. For more options, our picks for this year’s overall best mattress toppers include some models dedicated to back and hip pain. You may also want to consider our picks for the best memory foam topper, which are designed to conform to the body and prevent pressure point discomfort.

What’s the Best Mattress Topper for Back Pain?

The Saatva High-Density Foam Mattress Topper is a medium firmness model that’s made from high-quality, pressure-relieving foam. At 1.5 inches thick, it doesn’t significantly change your mattress’ feel, but does offer an extra bit of cushioning and support for back pain.

In-Depth Reviews

“The Saatva High-Density Foam Topper feels plush and adaptive but the 1.5-inch profile — which is relatively low — prevented me from sinking too deeply into the foam. This is a great investment if your mattress has some wear and tear, but isn’t too heavily indented, or if it’s just a bit too firm for your liking.” – Tom Ryan, Head of Product Testing

  • Pros

    1. High-quality foam relieves pressure points while supporting the spine

    2. Prevents motion disturbances

    3. Easy-to-wash cover with securely fitting straps

  • Cons

    1. Foam slightly restricts movement

    2. Doesn’t conform as closely as other foam toppers

    3. High price-point

Price

$295

Material

1.5″ High-Density Polyfoam

Firmness

Medium (5)

A sleep surface that lacks proper support can lead to back pain, so using a high-quality topper can buy you some time while you seek out a new mattress. The Saatva High-Density Foam Mattress Topper is a great option if you need extra cushioning to sleep comfortably, but dislike the close hug of memory foam. A 1.5-inch profile prevents the topper from compressing too much beneath your weight, but the medium (5) feel can improve the comfort level of your sleep surface — especially if your mattress has become excessively firm over time.

How It Performed

During hands-on tests, the topper fared well among our side and back sleepers. Our side sleepers between 130 and 230 pounds and back sleepers up to 230 pounds were particularly impressed. Since the topper is constructed from high-density polyfoam, we noticed close, even contouring and minimal sinkage. The foam also isolates motion quite well, so the topper could be a useful investment for couples who experience movement-related sleep disruptions because their mattress is overly responsive.

What It’s Made of

The topper’s core contains 1.5 inches of high-density polyfoam. This fairly low profile means the topper is best suited to mattresses with slight to moderate wear and tear, and that the foam shouldn’t sink too much beneath your weight. A cover made of GOTS-certified organic cotton encases the foam. Each corner is equipped with a thick elastic strap you can tuck under your mattress to stabilize the topper and prevent shifting when you change sleep positions or toss and turn.

Given the High-Density Foam Topper’s expected lifespan, its above-average sticker price may translate into a solid long-term investment. Saatva also offers free ground shipping throughout the contiguous U.S. Your purchase includes a generous sleep trial that runs for 180 nights, giving you plenty of time to decide whether the topper is right for you. If you decide to keep it, a 1-year warranty covers material and structural defects.

“The Sleep Is the Foundation Memory Foam Mattress Topper is perfect for anyone who needs to ramp up the cushioning on their bed surface. Since this topper isn’t too thick, I didn’t sink as excessively as I have on some other foam toppers.” – Logan Foley, Editorial Director

  • Pros

    1. Memory foam offers top-notch conforming and pressure relief

    2. Affordably priced

    3. Excellent blend of cushioning and support, especially for side and back sleepers

  • Cons

    1. Perforated memory foam retains some heat

    2. Not firm enough for back sleepers over 230 pounds or stomach sleepers over 130 pounds

    3. Only available in four sizes

Price

$175

Material

Perforated memory foam (gel-infused)

Firmness

Medium (5)

The Sleep Is the Foundation Memory Foam Mattress Topper conforms closely to your body during sleep. The deep contouring makes it an excellent choice for sleepers who aren’t getting enough cushioning from their mattress.

How It Performed

Memory foam is known for its adaptive properties, so it was no surprise to our in-house testers that this topper excelled at cradling the body and relieving pressure buildup. The topper also absorbed motion effectively. Our testers didn’t feel disturbed by each other’s movements when sharing the bed surface. During tests, the topper earned the highest marks from side sleepers across all weight groups and back sleepers up to 230 pounds. Stomach sleepers under 130 pounds also found the mattress topper comfortable.

What It’s Made of

The topper is composed of memory foam with a medium (5) feel. A perforated design helps reduce some of the heat retention we’ve noticed with other foam toppers. While the 2-inch profile offers decent cushioning, you may prefer a thicker topper if you want to drastically change or improve the feel of your mattress. The cover is made with cotton on top and polyester on the bottom. Adjustable corner straps and anti-slip beads help prevent the topper from shifting too much. You can purchase the topper in four standard sizes.

The Sleep Is the Foundation Memory Foam Mattress Topper is available exclusively through Amazon.com. Your topper comes with a 30-night refund policy, and Amazon Prime members receive free shipping.

“I’ve owned the Viscosoft Select High Density Topper for a few years, and it’s been a big hit with my overnight guests who have to sleep on our sofa bed. The foam is plush and adaptive, but dense enough to cradle your body without compressing beneath your weight.” – Brad Nehring, Senior Product Manager

  • Pros

    1. Straps adjust to fit a range of mattress profiles

    2. Balance of cushioning and support that’s adequate for side, back, and stomach sleepers

    3. Bamboo-derived rayon cover and gel-infused foam provide excellent cooling

  • Cons

    1. Does not provide sufficient support for stomach sleepers over 230 pounds

    2. Not responsive enough for some sleepers

    3. Foam off-gasses and has odor when first unwrapped

Price

$200

Material

Gel-Infused memory foam

Firmness

Medium Firm (6)

When it comes to improving your spinal alignment, few materials can match the effectiveness of high-density memory foam. The ViscoSoft Select High Density Topper has a balanced medium (5) feel, which is ideal for people who switch between multiple sleeping positions at night. Available in profiles of 3 or 4 inches, this topper is a good option if your mattress is on its last leg.

How It Performed

The Select High Density Topper was particularly popular among our side sleepers. Those weighing less than 130 pounds preferred the 4-inch model, whereas our side sleepers of 130 pounds or more felt more comfortable on the 3-inch topper. The 3-inch model also earned favorable ratings from our back sleepers up to 230 pounds, and stomach sleepers weighing less than 130 pounds.

The dense memory foam absorbs movement exceptionally well, so both toppers received high marks during our motion isolation tests. Pressure relief is another major strength. Body-mapping technology indicated little to no pressure buildup along the spine for the majority of our testing team.

What It’s Made of

The 3-inch and 4-inch toppers both contain a single layer of high-density memory foam. This material responds slowly to compression, resulting in a cloud-like feel as your body settles onto your sleep surface. Memory foam tends to absorb heat, so ViscoSoft used a cover made of rayon derived from bamboo. The fabric offers excellent cooling and also has moisture-wicking properties. That said, some people may still experience excessive heat retention. Thick, elastic straps at each corner help the topper stay in place.

The ViscoSoft Select High Density Topper carries an approachable price-point, and shipping is free of charge throughout the contiguous U.S. Your purchase includes a 90-night sleep trial. If you decide to keep the topper, you’ll also receive a 5-year warranty.

“If you’re looking for a foam topper with top-notch cushioning, the Helix Cool Mattress Topper is a solid pick. The foam layers offer deep, comfy hugging, while the thin coil layer strikes a balance between cradling and support.” – Jackson Lindeke, Executive Director

  • Pros

    1. Dual foam layers offer excellent cushioning and pressure relief

    2. Microcoil design delivers enhanced support and bounce

    3. Strong motion isolation is ideal for couples

  • Cons

    1. Prone to off-gassing odors at first

    2. Above-average price-point

Price

$399

Material

1.5″ polyfoam, .75″ microcoils, 1.5″ high-density polyfoam

Firmness

Medium Soft (4)

The Helix Cool Mattress Topper – Luxury Plush has a thick profile composed primarily of cradling foam, so it’s ideal for sleepers seeking ample cushioning for pressure-sensitive joints. That said, the inclusion of coils in the design also ensures a level of support we don’t normally see in foam-based toppers.

How It Performed

With two foam layers, a nearly 4-inch profile, and an overall medium soft (4) feel, the topper shines when it comes to pressure relief. The adaptive surface conforms closely to your joints to alleviate any pressure buildup. Meanwhile a thin layer of microcoils adds a touch of bounce that keeps your body from sinking too deep, which is sometimes an issue with toppers composed entirely of foam.

Side sleepers across all weight groups gave this topper high marks, since it eases pressure off the shoulders and hips while maintaining lumbar support. The topper earned similar praise from back sleepers up to 230 pounds and stomach sleepers under 130 pounds. Those sharing a bed with a restless sleep partner may also benefit from this topper, since the foam helps prevent motion from rippling across the surface.

What It’s Made of

The Helix Cool Mattress Topper – Luxury Plush begins with a top layer of polyfoam that offers strong contouring. This is followed by a thin layer of microcoils that enhance cradling while also generating gentle pushback. Rounding out the design is a second layer of foam, which is denser than the top layer to stabilize the topper and keep your body from sinking through. The topper is encased in a cooling phase change cover made with polyester and polyethylene fibers. Corner straps secure the topper to your mattress.

Helix offers free shipping to all 50 states, and you’ll receive a 100-night sleep trial to test the topper in your bed. The product also comes with a one-year warranty.

“The Silk & Snow Organic Mattress Topper showcases everything we like about solid latex. A light bounce, an adaptive feel with minimal contouring, and excellent temperature control are some of its defining qualities. Two firmness levels also boost the topper’s appeal — between both designs, most of our testers found at least one firmness that felt comfortable.” – Danny Noyed, Senior Product Editor

  • Pros

    1. Strong support for a 2-inch topper

    2. Latex core conforms to relieve pressure without compressing deeply

    3. Sleeps cool enough for hot sleepers and warm climates

  • Cons

    1. Allows some movement to transfer from side to side

    2. Firm model does not provide enough cushioning and support for side sleepers under 230 pounds

    3. Less affordable than other options

Price

$270

Material

100% GOLS-certified organic Dunlop latex

Firmness

Medium (5), Firm (7)

The most comfortable topper for any given sleeper with back pain should cushion sensitive areas and reduce discomfort while maintaining even support. The Silk & Snow Organic Mattress Topper is available in medium (5) and firm (7) designs. Between the two options, our tests show the topper can accommodate sleepers across a wide range of body types and sleep positions.

How It Performed

Our side sleepers weighing up to 130 pounds and back sleepers weighing less than 130 pounds preferred the balanced cushioning of the medium feel. While the latex won’t contour as closely as foam, you’ll notice some moderate conforming as the topper adapts to your body. Most of our testers weighing more than 230 pounds preferred the extra support of the firm feel. The same was true for our back and stomach sleepers weighing at least 130 pounds.

Since Dunlop latex is naturally dense and responsive, the topper fared well during our ease of movement tests. Most of us encountered minimal resistance moving across the toppers, and no one sank excessively — even when testing the medium feel. Temperature control is another strong point. The latex retains little heat and the breathable cotton cover promotes airflow, so you shouldn’t sleep too hot.

What It’s Made of

The topper’s core consists of Dunlop latex measuring 2 inches thick. Dunlop lacks the strong bounce of Talalay latex, but is still fairly responsive compared to foam and other topper materials. A cotton cover encases the latex. The cotton has earned certification from the Global Organic Textile Standard, and the latex is certified by the Global Organic Latex Standard, so this topper is a good option if you prefer to purchase sustainably made products.

Silk & Snow offers free ground shipping throughout the contiguous U.S. and Canada. The trial period runs for 100 nights, during which you can return the Organic Mattress Topper for a full refund if it doesn’t meet your needs. Should you decide to keep the topper, you’ll receive a 3-year warranty for the latex and a 1-year warranty for the cover.

“The AirFoam material Nolah uses in this topper should provide a happy medium for anyone with constant aches and pains who doesn’t enjoy the hug of memory foam. You’ll get plenty of cushioning — especially with the softer design — but the foam doesn’t sink too much.” – Logan Foley, Editorial Director

  • Pros

    1. Foam absorbs impact while cushioning side sleepers’ hips and shoulders

    2. Regulates temperature well for a foam topper

    3. Lengthy warranty for a topper

  • Cons

    1. Limits responsiveness that many couples like for sex

    2. Straps can’t attach easily to mattresses shorter than 8 inches or taller than 15 inches

    3. No model for those seeking a firm topper

Price

$399

Material

2″ AirFoam polyfoam

Firmness

Medium Soft (4), Medium Firm (6)

Foam mattress toppers can aid spinal alignment by helping distribute your weight across the surface. One example is the Nolah Mattress Topper, which has a polyfoam construction that helps cushion pressure points while preventing your body from sinking excessively. You can also choose between medium soft (4) and medium firm (6) feels, which should accommodate a wide range of sleep needs.

How It Performed

Our testing found the softer model better suited for side sleepers, offering extra cushioning to alleviate pressure in common areas like the hips and shoulders. Meanwhile, the firmer option offered more support for our side sleepers weighing more than 230 pounds, as well as our back and stomach sleepers weighing up to 230 pounds.

Thanks to the proprietary cooling technology and a breathable cover, the Nolah Mattress Topper kept cooler than many other foam models we’ve tested. The foam also absorbs most movement transfer and noise, making it an excellent addition for couples prioritizing motion isolation.

What It’s Made of

Proprietary AirFoam polyfoam is engineered to stay cooler than traditional memory foam while still offering cushioning to alleviate aches and pains. The foam measures 2 inches thick, perfect for mattresses with light to moderate wear. The foam’s intended cooling properties are enhanced by a breathable organic cotton cover, which is naturally moisture-wicking to keep you cool and dry throughout the night.

Nolah offers free shipping to customers living in the contiguous U.S. Returns are accepted within 30 days of delivery, and a 10-year warranty against structural defects backs the Mattress Topper.

“As someone who doesn’t love the hugging effect of memory foam, the extra-firm PlushBeds Natural Latex Topper is right up my alley. I enjoyed the gentle cushioning, and the latex was bouncy enough to prevent my body from sinking deeply. The latex is also ventilated, so airflow is steady and heat buildup wasn’t an issue.” – Jeremy Klein, Senior Product Testing Manager

  • Pros

    1. Buoyant and responsive surface works well for couples

    2. Provides good spinal support for stomach sleepers

    3. Available in 2-inch and 3-inch options

  • Cons

    1. Lacks the cushioning that back and side sleepers under 130 pounds need

    2. Little to no motion isolation

    3. Purchase doesn’t include a cover

Price

$511

Material

2-3″ natural Talalay latex

Firmness

Extra Firm (8)

The PlushBeds Natural Latex Topper has a firm (8) feel, making it one of the firmest toppers in our testing lab. The firm and responsive feel ensure robust support to keep your body on an even plane, while the latex adds a bit of surface cushioning for sore spots along the spine.

How It Performed

Our team tested each of the topper’s firmness levels, and the firmest model was most popular among our back and stomach sleepers weighing at least 130 pounds. If you sleep on your side or weigh less than 130 pounds, you may prefer one of the softer models. Most of our side sleepers preferred the medium soft (4) and medium (5) models, though some weighing less than 130 pounds enjoyed the deep cushioning of the soft (3) model.

The firm topper performed well during our temperature control tests. Our heat guns detected very little heat buildup thanks to the firm feel and breathable construction. We also awarded positive ratings for ease of movement. Latex is naturally responsive, so it won’t sink beneath your weight and shouldn’t sink excessively when you get in and out of bed.

What It’s Made of

The topper contains a single layer of organic Talalay latex certified by the Global Organic Latex Standard. The latex is ventilated to promote airflow and cooling. You can choose between 2- or 3- inch profiles. We recommend the latter for mattresses with more pronounced wear and tear, and the former for mattresses with minor to moderate sinkage. An organic cotton cover is available for an extra fee.

PlushBeds offers free ground shipping throughout the contiguous U.S. Returns are not accepted once the Natural Latex Topper has been unboxed, but your order is backed by a 5-year warranty against material defects.

“If you’re looking for a topper with no foam whatsoever, this model from Birch is a great option. The combo of wool and shredded latex makes the Organic Mattress Topper feel both plush and bouncy, and the profile is thick enough to significantly change how your sleep surface feels.” – Jeremy Klein, Senior Product Testing Manager

  • Pros

    1. Sleeps exceptionally cool due to organic wool and latex

    2. Materials are high-quality and durable

    3. Enough support and cushioning for sleepers of all weights

  • Cons

    1. Fairly expensive for a mattress topper

    2. Your partner may feel your movements from their side of the bed

    3. Mid-range conforming may not be enough for those with pressure point pain

Price

$399

Material

Talalay Latex

Firmness

Medium (5)

The Birch Organic Mattress Topper is constructed with high-end materials that give the topper above-average durability. If you’re in the market for a luxury topper and dislike the deep hug of foam, this model may be right up your alley. A handful of green certifications also make the topper an appealing option for eco-conscious shoppers.

How It Performed

The topper earned favorable ratings from our team’s back and stomach sleepers across all weight groups, but those weighing 130 to 230 pounds were particularly impressed. Some of our side sleepers also felt comfortable, but the latex may not conform closely enough to alleviate pressure in the shoulders and hips. This is especially true if you sleep on your side and weigh less than 130 pounds.

The Organic Mattress Topper excelled throughout our temperature control tests. We’ve attributed this strong performance to its breathable cover, moisture-wicking wool layers, and ventilated latex core. The topper may also be a good investment if your mattress has softened with age and become difficult to move on because the latex offers noticeable springiness.

What It’s Made of

The topper’s core contains 2 inches of Talalay latex. This material is exceptionally responsive, even compared to other types of latex, so you shouldn’t experience too much sinkage when getting in and out of bed or changing sleep positions. Organic cotton and organic wool batting rest atop the latex for extra cushioning. The wool also has moisture-wicking properties to keep you dry on humid nights.

Measuring slightly more than 2 inches thick, the topper should provide a good comfort adjustment for any mattress with light to moderate wear and tear. An organic cotton cover completes the eco-friendly design. The topper has earned green certifications from well-respected organizations such as the Global Organic Textile Standard, eco-INSTITUT, and Wool Integrity NZ.

Birch offers free ground shipping to all 50 states. The company’s sleep trial allows you to test out the Organic Mattress Topper for 100 nights. If it meets your needs, you’ll also receive a warranty covering structural defects for up to 10 years.

“This topper from Turmerry uses solid Talalay latex, so you can expect generous bounce, gentle cushioning, and a cool night’s sleep throughout the year. There’s a wide range of firmness and profile options — and if you aren’t happy with your first choice, Turmerry lets you exchange the topper for a different design at no extra cost.” – Danny Noyed, Senior Product Editor

  • Pros

    1. Available in four firmness levels and three profiles

    2. All versions sleep cool and have exceptional durability

    3. Zoned system provides both support and pressure relief

  • Cons

    1. Firmer models don’t conform closely to the body

    2. Topper cover costs extra

Price

$225

Material

2-4″ zoned Dunlop latex

Firmness

Soft (3), Medium (5), Medium Firm (6), Firm (7)

If you’re a side sleeper, chances are you’ll experience added pressure in the shoulders and hips after sleeping on a surface that doesn’t provide adequate cushioning. The Turmerry Latex Mattress Topper might be a worthwhile investment if your mattress feels too firm. You can choose from four firmness levels — soft (3), medium (5), medium firm (6), and firm (7) — depending on how much you weigh and the amount of support you need to sleep comfortably.

How It Performed

During our tests, the soft topper was popular among our side sleepers weighing less than 130 pounds but did not provide enough support for most of our other team members. The balanced feel of the medium topper earned favorable ratings from testers weighing 130 to 230 pounds across all sleep positions. If you’re a side sleeper who weighs more than 230 pounds, our tests indicate the medium firm and firm feels provide enough support. Our back and stomach sleepers weighing at least 130 pounds also preferred the firmer designs.

Temperature control was a highlight of our hands-on testing. The latex is ventilated to promote airflow, so you shouldn’t experience too much heat retention regardless of which firmness level you choose. Another area where the topper performed well was ease of movement. Even on the soft model, we were able to get on and off the mattress without excessive resistance.

What It’s Made of

The topper consists of ventilated Dunlop latex and is available in 2-inch, 3-inch, and 4-inch thickness options. The 4-inch option has a dual-sided design with a soft feel on one surface and medium firm feel on the other. If your mattress has heavy wear, you should consider the 3-inch or 4-inch designs, while the 2-inch topper should provide an adequate comfort adjustment for mattresses with minor indentations.

All thickness options are available with organic certification from the Global Organic Latex Standard, but you may also purchase non-organic versions for a slightly lower price. You can buy an organic cotton cover for an additional fee. Note that the cover is included for free with the purchase of the 4-inch topper.

The topper’s sticker price depends on which profile and type of latex you choose. Turmerry offers free ground shipping throughout the contiguous U.S. Your order comes with a 120-night sleep trial, and the topper is further backed by a 5-year warranty.

“Puffy’s Deluxe Mattress Topper showcases everything we love about solid memory foam — even contouring, a slow response to movement, and excellent motion isolation. You can choose from two firmness levels, and the stretch cover with deep pockets for securing the topper is a nice touch.” – Brad Nehring, Senior Product Manager

  • Pros

    1. Solid memory foam cradles the body and reduces pain along the spine

    2. Available in two firmness levels

    3. Stretchy cover secures the topper to your mattress

  • Cons

    1. Strong off-gassing odor for the first few nights

    2. Limited options for anyone seeking a medium to medium firm design

Price

$229

Material

2.5″ memory foam

Firmness

Soft (3), Firm (7)

Some toppers carry cheap price-points but aren’t made to last, while others are expensive and may not fall within your budget — especially as a short-term sleep solution. The Puffy Deluxe Mattress Topper finds nice middle ground between affordability and quality. Composed of solid memory foam encased in a breathable, stretch-knit cover, the topper significantly changes the feel of your sleep surface and should help you sleep comfortably until you purchase a new mattress.

How It Performed

The topper is sold in two firmness levels, and our team tested both. Side and back sleepers under 130 pounds appreciated the deep conforming and cradling of the soft (3) topper, which hugs the body to promote even alignment and minimize pressure points. We recommend this design if your mattress has become overly firm or stiff with age. Conversely, the firm (7) topper is quite supportive and should improve any sleep surface that has softened excessively over time. Back and stomach sleepers on our team were particularly impressed with this design.

Although the foam absorbs some heat, the breathable rayon-blend shell offsets heat retention to a noticeable degree and has moisture-wicking properties to help you stay dry. Both toppers also excel at motion isolation to reduce sleep disruptions for you and your partner, especially if your mattress is responsive and bouncy.

What It’s Made of

The topper measures 2.5 inches thick and contains a single layer of solid memory foam. Contouring level varies by firmness, but both designs mold to your figure and cradle your spine. The cover is outfitted with elastic corners intended to fit around the corners of your mattress, so there shouldn’t be any shifting during the night. A pocket depth of 15 inches lets you use the topper with most mattresses sold today, and you can machine-wash the cover as needed to keep your sleep surface clean.

Puffy offers free ground shipping throughout the contiguous U.S. Each topper comes with a 101-night trial period. If you decide to keep the topper, your purchase is also backed by a lifetime warranty against various manufacturing defects.

“The Muse Mattress Topper contains 3 inches of plush memory foam for deep contouring and cradling for your sore spots. At the same time, the material offers some bounce to assist with sleep position changes and movement across your mattress surface.” – Jackson Lindeke, Executive Director

  • Pros

    1. Plush feel and thick profile ensure a significant comfort adjustment for your sleep surface

    2. Anti-skid bottom prevents the topper from shifting

    3. 120-night trial is longer than average

  • Cons

    1. Strong off-gassing smells for the first 48 to 72 hours

    2. May be too soft for back and stomach sleepers over 230 pounds

Price

$335

Material

3″ memory foam

Firmness

Medium (5)

We always recommend taking your sleep position into account when choosing a mattress topper, but this can be challenging for combination sleepers who use more than one position on a regular basis. The Muse Mattress Topper offers a nice balance of cushioning and bounce, so you can improve the comfort level of your mattress without struggling when you switch to sleeping on your side, back, or stomach. Anti-skid grooves on the bottom also prevent the topper from shifting during position changes.

How It Performed

Adaptive all-foam construction and a thick 3-inch profile made this topper popular among the side sleepers on our testing team. Those weighing up to 230 pounds were especially impressed. Many of our back and stomach sleepers in this weight range also enjoyed the topper, though some reported uncomfortable sinkage. Regardless of whether each person gave the topper a positive rating, we all agreed that it significantly changed the feel of the mattress our team used for these tests.

Motion isolation proved to be one of the topper’s defining qualities. As a result, this may be a worthwhile investment if your mattress has become overly responsive and disruptive over time but you and your partner aren’t ready to purchase a new model. Pressure relief is another major strength. The memory foam gently molds to your body’s unique curves, leading to even alignment and less pressure buildup in the shoulders, lower back, and hips.

What It’s Made of

The Muse Mattress Topper contains 3 inches of solid memory foam. This profile is on the thicker side, making it suitable for mattresses with substantial wear and tear. You’ll notice deep cradling as the foam softens in response to your body heat — many testers describe this effect as “cloud-like,” with ample cushioning beneath your midsection.

A removable, machine-washable cover encases the topper. The top cover consists of soft knit fabric, while the bottom is equipped with small grooves that provide traction and prevent the topper from skidding when you move in bed. You can choose from seven sizes, including six that correspond to standard mattress dimensions and a short queen that’s ideal for many RV sleep spaces.

Standard ground shipping is free of charge within the contiguous U.S. Muse allows you to test the topper for up to 120 nights in your own home, and backs your purchase with a five-year warranty should you decide to keep it.

Can a Mattress Topper Help With Back Pain?

Because mattress toppers come in a range of firmness levels, allowing you to change how soft or firm your bed feels, adding one to your bed is an easy and inexpensive way to address back pain and increase comfort.

If your bed lacks adequate support for back pain, you can opt for a topper with a strong structure and plenty of pushback. Some models have zoned support systems designed to enhance spinal alignment. If you experience pressure point pain, use a topper made from materials like foam or latex, which conform to the body’s shape to absorb impact and disperse weight.

If you experience regular or serious back pain, you should consult your physician for proper treatment.

“Pain does not have to be extreme to keep us awake. Even milder forms of pain can result in varying degrees of insomnia, resulting in trouble falling or staying asleep.”
Headshot of psychiatrist Dr. Alex Dimitriu
Alex Dimitriu
Psychiatrist, MD

What Kind of Mattress Topper Is Best for Back Pain?

The best kind of topper for back pain depends on what kind of relief your body needs. Toppers are made from a range of materials, which each have their own pros and cons.

Memory Foam

Memory foam is excellent at cushioning the body and relieving pain. It compresses and adapts under pressure and is slow to regain its original form. This allows it to hug your body and disperse your weight, which prevents pressure buildup under your heavier areas, like the hips. Memory foam can trap heat, but it is widely available and typically affordable, making it an effective choice for people with back pain.

Polyfoam

Polyfoam has many of the same characteristics as memory foam, but it’s not quite as dense and doesn’t have as much elasticity, which typically results in slightly less contouring and compression than memory foam. Polyfoam toppers sleep warmer than latex or coils, but they may be a bit cooler than memory foam models.

Latex

Latex is made from rubber tree sap and is quickly becoming a preferred choice for bedding products like mattress toppers. Both formulations of latex, Dunlop and Talalay, are buoyant and responsive, making it a good choice for back pain relief. Choose a Dunlop topper if you want structure and even support, and Talalay if you need more cushioning and pressure relief.

Because it’s a natural substance, latex is typically more expensive than other topper materials.

Microcoil

Microcoil toppers are meant to mimic the structure, support, and pushback of hybrid and innerspring beds. These toppers are responsive and often a good choice for people with back pain who need edge support and increased spinal alignment.

Hot sleepers will appreciate how well microcoil toppers regulate temperature, as do those who favor the feel of sleeping “on” rather than “in” their mattress.

What to Consider in a Mattress Topper for Back Pain

Material isn’t the only factor to consider when shopping for a mattress topper. You need to keep a few more characteristics and qualities in mind when choosing the right one.

Sleeping Position and Firmness

Your sleeping position and body weight are the most important things to consider when shopping for either a mattress or a topper, especially if you have back pain. Back, stomach, and side sleepers each require different firmness levels to ensure that they get the right amount of support and spinal alignment. If your topper is too soft, your body can sink into your mattress and cause your spine to bend. If it’s too firm, you may experience aches and pains related to pressure points.

Conforming and Pressure Relief 

People with back or joint pain can find comfort from a mattress topper that relieves discomfort by conforming to the body’s shape, which ensures that your hips, shoulders, or lower back don’t have to support the majority of your weight.

Toppers with zoned support systems are also an excellent choice for pressure relief. They are separated into distinct zones with different levels of pushback, which gives strong support where you need it and increased cushioning where you don’t.

Thickness 

Mattress toppers tend to measure between 1 and 4 inches thick, though this varies by model. Thin toppers add a bit of cushioning but don’t have enough material to make a significant impact on how your mattress feels. If you’re looking for strong back pain relief, a model that’s at least 2 inches thick should make a significant difference.

Durability

A worn-out mattress is the culprit behind many peoples’ lower back pain and a worn-out mattress topper can create similar issues. Purchasing a topper made from high-end materials may cost more initially, but doing so can ensure that your topper will have a lengthy lifespan.

Cooling Properties

For those that sleep hot, a mattress topper made with cooling technology can improve your overall comfort and experience. Latex and microcoils are both inherently cool because their structure leaves plenty of space for air to flow through. Foams tend to retain more heat, but perforated foams and gel infusions are often added to increase temperature regulation.

Price

The average mattress topper costs between $150 and $400, though many models are available under $100. The price of a mattress topper depends largely on materials, size, and thickness. Quality also impacts cost, though spending a bit more on high-end materials can result in a longer-lasting topper.

Watch Video: How to Buy a Mattress Topper — 5 Things to Know

Watch the video below to learn more about our tips for buying a mattress topper.

Dive Deeper: In-Depth Bedding Guides

Though back pain is a very common reason you may be looking for a new mattress, our testing team has also identified top-performing mattresses for many other conditions that can keep you from getting quality sleep.

Data-Driven Results You Can Trust

Our sleep product experts have been testing mattresses, toppers, and other sleep products in our Seattle-based sleep lab for nearly a decade. We’ve personally tried and examined hundreds of mattress toppers, so we understand which models are worth your money and which ones aren’t. Our testing methodology includes putting each model through tests that include temperature regulation, pressure relief, responsiveness, and durability, among others.

For this review, we took particular care to include models that we think will work well for people with back pain. We chose toppers that focus on spinal alignment, pressure relief, and durability, which are all critical factors for people who experience back pain.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is a mattress topper good for back pain?

A mattress topper can be good for back pain if it helps to improve your spinal alignment or relieve pressure point discomfort that stems from inadequate cushioning. Adding a topper is also a great choice if your current mattress isn’t the right firmness level for your weight and sleeper type.

What type of mattress topper is best for back pain?

The best type of mattress topper for back pain is one that cushions your back and body while keeping your spine aligned. Latex, polyfoam, memory foam, and microcoil toppers can all achieve this goal, so you should choose one that addresses the root cause of your discomfort, whether that’s lack of spinal support or pressure point pain.

Is a firm or soft mattress topper better for back pain?

If you want to address back pain with a mattress topper, you should pick a firmness level that’s appropriate for your weight and sleeping position. Side sleepers need softer sleep surfaces to prevent pressure point pain, while stomach sleepers require models firm enough to keep their midsections from sinking into their mattresses. Back sleepers usually prefer mid-firmness models that balance structure and conforming.

What is the difference between a mattress topper and pad?

Mattress pads are usually thinner than mattress toppers and are designed to protect your mattress while providing a bit of cushioning, while toppers are meant to make more of an impact on your mattress’ overall feel.

How thick should a mattress topper for back pain be?

A mattress topper for back pain should be thick enough to alter how your mattress feels. A model between 2 and 4 inches thick can usually achieve this. A very thin model may not make enough of a difference and you may bottom out and sink into your bed.

Still have questions?

Our product experts have extensive experience testing just about every sleep product on the market.

Send an email to [email protected] with your questions and we’ll help you find exactly what you’re looking for.

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