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Headshot of author Logan Foley
By Logan Foley

If you want a plush, luxurious feel from the moment you lie down on a mattress, a pillow-top model may be a good fit. These beds have a layer of cushioning material sewn to the top, creating a soft, contouring surface to cradle your body. Pillow-top designs are typically found on hybrid and innerspring mattresses. 

A traditional pillow-top model gives the appearance of an additional layer sitting on top of the bed. A Euro-top model is a type of pillow-top in which the additional layer lines up flush with the edge of the layers beneath. For this mattress guide, we evaluated both types of models. 

Pillow-top mattresses vary in quality, so sleepers should research a bed’s materials and construction when shopping. It’s also important to consider how much the mattress meets your personal preferences and needs. 

To help choose the best pillow-top mattress for you, we’ve tested and researched dozens of mattresses to come up with our top picks below. We’ll explain what to look for when choosing a pillow-top mattress. We’ll also explore the pros and cons of pillow-tops and answer frequently asked questions about this type of mattress. 

If you’re looking for even more mattress options, our guide to the best mattresses of 2024 covers all of our top picks and why we’ve chosen them.

What’s the Best Pillow-Top Mattress?

The WinkBed offers the deeply cushioned contouring that sleepers expect from a Euro-top without skimping on sturdiness or edge support. With four firmness options to choose from, sleepers across a wide range of body types and sleeping positions can find a model for their needs.

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In-Depth Reviews

“The WinkBed’s Euro-top cushions the surface while the coil system prevents excessive sinkage, making it as plush as it is robust. Four of our field testers have been sleeping on this mattress for at least a year and they all singled out strong support as one of the bed’s best features.” – Tom Ryan, Head of Product Testing

  • Pros

    1. Zoned coils beneath a quilted Euro-top deliver a balance of support and cushioning

    2. Four firmness options accommodate a wide range of sleepers

    3. Excellent edge support allows use of the entire mattress

  • Cons

    1. Pocketed coils may produce some motion transfer

    2. Firmness exchanges incur a fee

Mattress Type

Innerspring

Firmness Options

Medium Soft (4), Medium Firm (6), Firm (7), Firm (8)

Price Range

$1,149 – $2,049

Trial Period

120 nights (30 night requirement)

A common complaint our testers have about many pillow-top mattresses is that they feel too soft and lack adequate support. The WinkBed stands out thanks to a robust design with zoned coils to maintain an even surface and sturdy transitional layers for added reinforcement.

How It Performed

With multiple firmness levels to choose from, virtually all of our testers found an option that suits them. Most side sleepers on our team preferred the medium soft and medium firm, while back sleepers gravitated toward the medium firm and firm (7). Stomach sleepers gave high marks to both the firm (7) and Plus (8) models, though the medium firm was also comfortable for stomach sleepers up to 230 pounds.

Thanks to its coil design, breathable Tencel cover, and cooling gel infusion, the WinkBed has ample airflow that prevented excessive heat buildup during our tests. The zoned support coils also provided excellent edge support and made it easy for our testers to move across the surface. These features make the mattress a good option for couples who prefer a responsive surface for sex.

What It’s Made of

The WinkBed is designed with four different firmness levels – medium soft (4), medium firm (6), firm (7), and Plus (8). All models are composed of a Euro-top cushioned with gel-infused polyfoam. The medium soft, medium firm, and firm models feature a second polyfoam layer with a denser composition. This denser polyfoam promotes pressure relief but is firm enough to keep your body from sinking excessively.

The WinkBed Plus replaces the second polyfoam layer with zoned latex for extra responsiveness. Meanwhile, the medium soft model includes an additional polyfoam layer to generate a plusher feel. A pocketed coil base layer offers targeted support to the lumbar area, and a reinforced perimeter adds phenomenal edge support. The cover is made of a Tencel fabric that helps keep the surface cool.

WinkBeds stands by its mattress with a 120-night sleep trial and lifetime warranty against structural defects. Orders ship free in the contiguous U.S.

“If you’re looking for a pillow-top hybrid with approachable pricing, the Brooklyn Bedding Signature gives you great bang for your buck. Our testing team was particularly impressed with this model’s medium firm design, which contours closely to alleviate pressure but also pushes back against your weight to maintain an even surface.” – Jackson Lindeke, Director of Product Experience

  • Pros

    1. Soft, contouring pillow-top relieves pressure while coils and high-density foam offer solid support

    2. Available in 14 sizes

    3. Below-average price-point for a quality pillow-top hybrid

  • Cons

    1. Edges may sag

    2. Returns incur a fee

Mattress Type

Hybrid

Firmness Options

Medium Firm (6)

Price Range

$499 – $1,199

Trial Period

120 nights (30-night requirement)

Pillow-top hybrids generally carry above-average sticker prices, but Brooklyn Bedding’s Signature Hybrid is a more affordable option that doesn’t skimp on performance or quality of design. Our team has tested all three of the Signature Hybrid’s firmness levels, concluding the medium firm (6) design provides the most comfortable balance of cushioning and support — especially with the optional “Cloud” Euro-top.

How It Performed

The Signature Hybrid – Medium earned favorable ratings from most of our testers across different body type and sleep position groups. Side, back, and stomach sleepers weighing 130 to 230 pounds awarded the highest marks to this model. If you’re a side sleeper who weighs up to 230 pounds, you may also find the medium soft (4) model comfortable, whereas back and stomach sleepers weighing at least 130 pounds should consider the more supportive firm (8) design.

The Cloud Euro-top makes the Signature Hybrid’s surface softer and more adaptive, so this may be a helpful add-on if you frequently experience pain or pressure points in your shoulders, lower back, and hips. Couples may also want to invest in the Euro-top, as the foam absorbs movement and reduces motion isolation to a significant extent. A gel infusion helps minimize heat buildup and the coils promote plenty of airflow, so the mattress should also sleep relatively cool.

What It’s Made of

The Signature Hybrid begins with a top comfort layer of TitanFlex, a proprietary material that combines the cushioning of memory foam and the responsiveness of latex. VariFlex polyfoam makes up the transitional layer. The Cloud Euro-top contains adaptive foam infused with cooling gel. This makes the mattress slightly softer, but we’ve still rated this design as medium firm.

The support core consists of pocketed coils over high-density base foam. These components stabilize the mattress, allowing you to move across the surface and get in and out of bed without sinking too much. A cover made of GlacioTex cooling fabric dissipates heat from the surface. A total of 14 sizes are available. In addition to standard mattress dimensions, your options include a split California king intended for couples who use adjustable beds and several RV-friendly sizes.

Brooklyn Bedding offers free ground shipping throughout the contiguous U.S. Your order includes a sleep trial that runs for 120 nights. If you’re satisfied with your Signature Hybrid – Medium after the trial period ends, the mattress is further backed by a 10-year manufacturer’s warranty.

“The Euro-top is a key component to the Saatva Classic’s comfortable feel. Our testers loved the combination of luxurious cushioning and sturdy coil-on-coil support.” – Lauren Fountain, Senior Editor

  • Pros

    1. Thick foam Euro-top cushions your body and relieves pressure buildup

    2. Coil-on-coil design adds bounce

    3. Available in two heights and three firmness levels

  • Cons

    1. Returns incur a fee

    2. Firm and luxury firm models allow noticeable motion transfer

Mattress Type

Innerspring

Firmness Options

Soft (3), Medium Firm (6), Firm (8)

Price Range

$995 – $2,710

Trial Period

365 Nights ($99 Return Fee)

Pillow-top innersprings have earned a somewhat negative reputation for feeling too stiff despite their cushioning surfaces. The Saatva Classic is a high-end model that builds on the innerspring design with innovative features that catered to most of our testers regardless of their body type, sleep position, and firmness preferences.

How It Performed

You can choose between soft (3), medium firm (6), and firm (8) feels for the mattress, depending on your ideal level of support, as well as an 11.5-inch or 14.5-inch profile. Our side sleepers who weigh less than 130 pounds enjoyed the softest model’s generous cushioning. The medium firm was the most versatile and best suited to our side and back sleepers between 130 and 230 pounds. All of our testers who weigh more than 230 pounds appreciated the support from the firmest model.

The Saatva Classic’s coil-on-coil design creates a bouncy feel on the surface without making the mattress feel too stiff. Strong performance during our edge support and ease of movement tests make the mattress a great choice for couples who prefer a responsive surface for sex. The coil layers also promoted steady airflow throughout the mattress core during our temperature control tests – a major asset for our hot sleepers.

What It’s Made of

A Euro-top containing a memory foam lumbar pad and adaptive polyfoam allows the Saatva to contour to your body more closely than the average innerspring. The mattress also features a pocketed microcoil transitional layer that provides targeted relief to pressure-prone areas. The support core is composed of Bonnell coils that provide pushback to prevent sagging and promote spinal alignment. The coils have a foam encasement that strengthens the perimeter. A breathable organic cotton cover encases the mattress.

Saatva is one of the few online mattress brands to offer free White Glove delivery anywhere in the contiguous U.S. This service includes in-home assembly in a room of your choice and old mattress removal at no extra charge. The company also offers a 365-night sleep trial, one of the longest in the mattress industry, and a lifetime warranty for the Classic.

“Our side-sleeping testers enjoyed the Helix Midnight Luxe’s soft Euro-top. One of our field testers has slept on this bed for 2 years and says it has the perfect feel — sufficiently soft to cushion his shoulders and hips, but supportive and robust enough to keep his spine aligned.” – Jackson Lindeke, Director of Product Experience

  • Pros

    1. Quilted surface and foam comfort layers relieve pressure at shoulders and hips

    2. Strong balance of cushioning and support

    3. Coils are zoned to enhance support and cradling where they’re most needed

  • Cons

    1. Hot sleepers may need to upgrade to GlacioTex cooling cover

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

Mattress Type

Hybrid

Firmness Options

Medium Firm (6)

Price Range

$1,099 – $2,299

Trial Period

100 nights (30-night requirement)

Thanks to its balanced feel, the Midnight Luxe is a standout model in Helix’s Luxe hybrid collection. This model has adaptive foam comfort layers that closely contoured to our side sleepers’ bodies and relieved pressure in the joints.

How It Performed

We rate the Midnight Luxe as a medium firm, or a 6 out of 10. This firmness level best suited our side sleepers weighing between 130 and 230 pounds. Back sleepers weighing less than 130 pounds also felt supported, but stomach sleepers and people weighing more than 230 pounds may want a firmer Helix model.

The Midnight Luxe’s hybrid construction prevented most motion transfer when we moved across the mattress while providing a responsive surface that doesn’t hinder movement. The breathable, moisture-wicking cover and steady airflow through the coil system earned high marks in our temperature control tests.

What It’s Made of

The Midnight Luxe features a memory foam pillow-top with a breathable Tencel cover. Adaptive memory foam cushions the hips and shoulders to relieve pressure buildup. A polyfoam transitional layer ensures your weight is evenly distributed and acts as a buffer between the foam layers and the coils.

The support core contains pocketed coils divided into different zones based on coil gauge, or thickness, to ensure extra support around the midsection. A perimeter reinforcement helps the mattress bear weight when you sit or lay near the edges. The coils rest on a polyfoam base layer for stability.

Helix offers a 100-night sleep trial and a 15-year warranty for the Midnight Luxe. Shipping is free to all 50 states, with an additional fee for Canada.

“Our testers with sharp pressure points appreciated the Evolution 15’s cushioned surface and zoned coil system. The mattress also has a reasonable price-point considering how solid and balanced it feels. Thanks to the multiple firmness levels, most of us found a comfortable design.” – Lauren Fountain, Senior Editor

  • Pros

    1. Zoned design provides targeted pressure relief and support

    2. Reinforced perimeter coils offer robust edge support

    3. Choice of three firmness levels

  • Cons

    1. You may need to purchase deep pocket sheets to fit 15-inch profile

    2. Returns incur a fee

Mattress Type

Hybrid

Firmness Options

Medium (5), Medium Firm (6), Firm (8)

Price Range

$1,004 – $2,143

Trial Period

120 nights (30-night requirement)

The Nolah Evolution 15 is a versatile hybrid bed that catered to many of our team members. With a thick quilted Euro-top and plush foam layer beneath, the bed offers excellent relief if you experience painful pressure points during sleep.

How It Performed

The Nolah Evolution 15 is available in three different firmness options — plush (5), luxury firm (6), and firm (8) — that catered to many of our tester’s needs and preferences. Our stomach sleepers, especially those who weigh over 230 pounds and require more support. The softer options better suited our side and back sleepers under 230 pounds, especially those seeking pressure relief in the hips and shoulders.

If you run hot, the Nolah Evolution 15 offers excellent temperature regulation. A breathable coil system allows air to circulate, while the Euro-top cover and foam layers are engineered to run cooler than conventional foam.This earned the mattress higher ratings from our hot sleepers compared to other models with foam comfort systems.

What It’s Made of

The mattress has an above-average profile, which is to be expected of pillow-top beds. The Euro-top cover is quilted with foam that conforms to your body to relieve pressure. This is followed by a layer of proprietary AirFoamICE polyfoam that enhances the bed’s contouring performance.

A transitional layer of high-resilience foam acts as a buffer between your body and the coils. The pocketed coil support core creates a strong supportive foundation for the bed. The coil system is zoned to provide additional support to areas of your body that may need it, such as the midsection.

Nolah offers free shipping within the contiguous U.S. Customers receive a 120-night sleep trial and may return the bed for a full refund after an initial 30-day break-in period. The mattress is backed by a limited lifetime warranty.

“Our testers with back pain agreed the Birch Luxe offers a surprising amount of support, given how plush the surface feels. Hot sleepers on our team also found the mattress quite comfortable.” – Danny Noyed, Senior Product Editor

  • Pros

    1. Wool and latex layers are naturally breathable

    2. Latex design offers responsive feel

    3. Carries GOTS and GREENGUARD Gold certifications

  • Cons

    1. Bouncy design produces noticeable motion transfer

    2. Fee charged for returns

Mattress Type

Latex Hybrid

Firmness Options

Medium Firm (6)

Price Range

$1,599 – $2,999

Trial Period

100 nights (30-night requirement)

The Birch Luxe Natural is designed for shoppers in the market for a bed made with certified organic materials. The eco-friendly construction is also breathable with a balance of support and contouring, making it exceptionally comfortable if you frequently experience upper or lower back pain.

How It Performed

The comfort layers on the Birch Luxe offer cushioning, while the latex and coils provide enough pushback to keep the body on an even plane. This even balance of cushioning and support, along with the medium firm (6) feel, made the bed an excellent match for our back and side sleepers. Testers who use these positions often need beds that relieve pressure in sensitive areas like the shoulders, hips, and spine but also require support for the lumbar region.

Temperature control was another one of the mattress’ strengths. Our hot sleepers enjoyed the breathable cotton cover, wool, and latex layers, as well as the ample airflow through the coils. As a result, our heat guns detected minimal heat retention on the surface. We also recommend the mattress to couples who prioritize a responsive surface for sex. The coil system gave the Luxe a bouncy feel that was easy for us to move across, while the perimeter reinforcement stabilizes the mattress when you sit or lay near the edges.

What It’s Made of

The comfort system begins with an organic cotton Euro-top cover that is quilted for a plush feel on the surface. Beneath is a layer of organic wool-rayon blend that cushions the body and also acts as a fire retardant. This is followed by a wool layer and two additional layers of wool for enhanced cushioning. The cotton has organic certification from GOTS, while the wool has been certified organic by Wool Integrity NZ. The main comfort layer is made of proprietary Pulse latex that gently cradles the body to relieve pressure buildup.

The support core consists of pocketed coils zoned to provide enhanced reinforcement for your hips and shoulders. A perimeter reinforcement strengthens the edges of the mattress. The coils rest on a base layer of wool and rayon to prevent shifting.

Birch offers customers a 100-night sleep trial to test the mattress, as well as a 25-year warranty against structural defects. Shipping is free throughout all 50 states.

“The Saatva HD felt incredibly firm and stable during lab tests. Our testers of all body types remarked how supportive the mattress felt, and sinkage was a non-issue. The responsive feel should also appeal to couples who want a surface that’s easy to move around on.” – Tom Ryan, Head of Product Testing

  • Pros

    1. Thick foam Euro-top offers strong cushioning

    2. Latex comfort layer and steel coils provide responsive feel and excellent edge support

    3. Free White Glove delivery and 365-night sleep trial

  • Cons

    1. Likely too firm for side and back sleepers under 130 pounds

    2. Deep pocket sheets may be necessary

Mattress Type

Innerspring

Firmness Options

Firm (7)

Price Range

$1,895 – $4,190

Trial Period

365 Nights ($99 Return Fee)

The Saatva HD is a firm (7) luxury hybrid specifically designed for people who weigh more than 230 pounds. A deep comfort system and low-gauge hourglass coils create an exceptionally strong support system for those who need it most. We also found the mattress a good choice for couples and co-sleepers due to its stable perimeter and responsive surface.

How It Performed

During our hands-on tests, the HD’s highest ratings came from side sleepers weighing more than 230 pounds, back sleepers weighing at least 130 pounds, and stomach sleepers between 130 and 230 pounds. None of our testers noticed excessive sagging, and the perimeter felt stable when we evaluated the mattress for edge support.

Temperature control was another area where the HD performed well. The latex retains minimal body heat, air circulates freely through the coils, and the cotton cover is fairly breathable. All these factors allowed our testers to feel cool and comfortable while lying on the mattress. The firm feel and sturdy support core should also ensure a longer-than-average lifespan for the HD.

What It’s Made of

The Saatva HD’s Euro-top is cushioned with a top polyfoam layer that adapts to the body and creates an invitingly plush feel. A second comfort layer of zoned Talalay latex feels firmer beneath the chest, stomach, and hips while gently cradling lighter areas of the body. The latex is also Rainforest Alliance certified, ensuring it was sustainably sourced and produced. Dense, transitional memory foam completes the HD’s sophisticated comfort system, adding extra cushioning and providing a buffer between your body and the support core.

Robust hourglass coils encased in dense foam provide great overall stability for the mattress. The coils have a low gauge of 12.5, making them thicker than the coils found in most competing innersprings and hybrids. A GOTS-certified organic cotton cover encases the entire mattress. Measuring 15.5 inches thick, the HD is one of the thickest mattresses we’ve tested in our lab.

While the sticker price is somewhat expensive, Saatva sweetens the deal for customers in the contiguous U.S. with free White Glove delivery. This service includes a scheduled delivery date, full setup in a room of your choice, and removal of your old mattress and box spring upon request. You’ll also receive a sleep trial with the HD that runs for an entire year. Should you decide to keep the mattress, Saatva backs it with a lifetime warranty against structural defects.

“If you and your sleep partner have different sleep preferences, the Naturepedic EOS Organic Pillow Top is worth considering — you can customize both sides of the bed based on each of your ideal firmness levels. Strong edge support, consistent cooling, and a nice bounce further add to the appeal for couples.” – Jackson Lindeke, Director of Product Experience

  • Pros

    1. Customizable hybrid design with a different firmness level on the left and right sides

    2. Excellent cooling thanks to breathable comfort materials and steady airflow through the coils

    3. Comfort layers can be swapped out during the sleep trial

  • Cons

    1. Significantly more expensive than average

    2. Thick profile may necessitate deep-pocket sheets

Mattress Type

Latex Hybrid

Firmness Options

Soft (3), Medium Soft (4), Medium (5), Medium Firm (6), Firm (7)

Price Range

$3,099 – $5,799

Trial Period

90 nights (30-night requirement)

Finding the right mattress can be tricky for couples who don’t share the same firmness and contouring preferences. Naturepedic’s EOS Organic Pillow Top is designed with a distinct feel on the left side and another on the right. You can each choose from five firmness options ranging from soft to firm, and Naturepedic allows you to swap in new layers within 100 nights of delivery if you aren’t satisfied with your initial selection.

How It Performed

Although our team wasn’t able to test all of the EOS Organic Pillow Top’s variations, we were greatly impressed with the split-firmness model we evaluated in our lab. One side was medium soft (4) and felt luxuriously plush, contouring closely to cradle our bodies without the deep hug of memory foam. The other side was firm (7) and exceptionally supportive with plenty of bounce to help us move along the surface. Side sleepers up to 230 pounds and back sleepers under 130 pounds preferred the softer feel, while our heavier testers found the firmer side more comfortable.

The EOS Organic Pillow Top is a quintessential latex hybrid, characterized by excellent cooling and noticeable responsiveness. Reinforced perimeter coils prevented excessive sinkage when we took turns lying along the edges and getting on and off the mattress. Since the mattress is divided down the middle, you and your partner shouldn’t notice too much motion transfer — a common issue with all-latex and latex hybrid models.

What It’s Made of

The mattress features a Euro-top cushioned with wool batting, plant-based fiber fill, and 3 inches of latex. An additional latex layer provides transitional support, forming a buffer between your body and the support core. The pocketed coils are sandwiched between layers of cotton batting for additional cushioning. A GOTS-certified organic cotton cover encases both sections of the mattress.

At 15 inches, the profile is somewhat high and you’ll need two fitted sheets with deep pockets to ensure a secure fit. You and your partner choose between a soft (3), medium soft (4), medium (5), medium firm (6), or firm (7) feel for your respective sides of the bed. The EOS Organic Pillow Top’s modular design allows you to easily swap out the top latex layer for a softer or firmer feel. Please note the dual-firmness design is only available for queen, king, and California king sizes.

The EOS Pillow Top Hybrid is fairly expensive, even compared to the average latex hybrid, but the mattress may be a worthwhile investment for you and your partner if either of you is losing sleep due to the firmness level of your sleep surface. Some assembly is required when the mattress arrives. In addition to the 100-night trial period, your purchase is backed by a 25-year warranty.

“The Puffy Diamond is one of the most luxurious Euro-top hybrids we’ve tested. Measuring 16 inches tall, the mattress features cushioning layers of alpaca hair batting, adaptive polyfoam, memory foam, and latex — all of which give the surface an invitingly plush feel with deep, cloud-like contouring.” – Lauren Fountain, Senior Editor

  • Pros

    1. Thick profile includes latex, alpaca wool, and foam for exceptional plushness

    2. Memory foam and polyfoam layers contour closely to relieve pressure buildup

    3. Breathable materials excel at temperature regulation

  • Cons

    1. Edges prone to moderate sagging

    2. Deep pocket sheets necessary for 16-inch profile

Mattress Type

Latex Hybrid

Firmness Options

Medium Soft (4)

Price Range

$1,999 – $3,998

Trial Period

101 nights

If you experience frequent or chronic back pain, you should invest in a mattress that helps alleviate your discomfort. The Puffy Diamond is a high-profile luxury hybrid with thick comfort layers that contour closely to the body, evenly distribute your weight, and promote even spinal alignment. This is one of the softest and most adaptive Euro-top models our team has tested, so we’ve determined the mattress is well suited to anyone who loses sleep due to back pain.

How It Performed

The Diamond fared well among side sleepers during our hands-on tests. Those weighing up to 230 pounds were particularly impressed with the mattress’ plush surface and close conforming. Back and stomach sleepers under 130 pounds also awarded favorable ratings to the Diamond, but those weighing more found the mattress too soft and prone to uncomfortable sinkage — a firmer model is recommended if you’re a back or stomach sleeper who weighs 130 pounds or more, or a side sleeper over 230 pounds.

Temperature control was a testing highlight for the Diamond. Although the foam layers absorb some warmth, the moisture-wicking alpaca hair batting and ventilated latex help offset heat retention. Steady airflow through the coils and a breathable cover also contribute to the Diamond’s cooling qualities. Other strong performance areas include motion isolation and pressure relief.

What It’s Made of

The Diamond’s comfort system consists of seven individual layers, beginning with alpaca hair batting beneath the surface to cool off the mattress and wick moisture away from your body. Polyfoam and memory foam layers provide close cushioning, while ventilated latex adds a bit of responsiveness. The transitional foam layer is divided into three firmness zones to create extra pushback around the torso and hips, though the mattress still feels quite plush.

Pocketed coils encased in dense foam make up the support core. The foam is intended to stabilize the edges, but our team found the Diamond’s perimeter still sinks a bit. A quilted cover encases the mattress. At 16 inches thick, the Diamond is considered a high-profile model and requires a fitted sheet with deep pockets.

Shoppers in all 50 states receive free ground shipping with their Puffy Diamond purchase. The mattress also comes with a 101-night sleep trial. If you decide to keep the Diamond, it’s backed by a lifetime warranty covering structural defects for as long as you retain original ownership.

What Is a Pillow-Top Mattress and Who Should Sleep on One?

Pillow-top mattresses feature an extra top layer designed to enhance cushioning or responsiveness on the surface. The layer is typically composed of foam, latex, wool, or various fibers, and usually measures 2 to 4 inches. The edge of the pillow-top layer is not attached to the edge of the layer beneath, which gives it a cloudlike feel. 

In general, side and back sleepers appreciate the extra padding of pillow-tops. This mattress type is also ideal for those seeking greater contouring or cushioning than conventional innerspring and hybrid mattresses. It’s also a good match for people who simply prefer a plush sleep surface.

ProsCons
  • Plush Comfort: Pillow-tops enhance the cushioning of a mattress for a soft, luxe feel.
  • Pressure Relief: Many pillow-tops add contouring properties which can relieve pressure, aches, and pains.
  • Motion Isolation: Pillow-tops often absorb motion due to their close conforming. This helps minimize sleep disruptions for bed partners.
  • Heat Retention: The plushness of the extra layer traps more heat than the mattress would otherwise, though some beds add cooling components to offset heat retention.
  • Lower Durability: Some pillow-tops use materials like fiberfill or low-density foam that may deteriorate or develop body impressions more easily over time.
  • Less Edge Support: Because the perimeter of a pillow-top is not joined to the rest of the mattress, pillow-tops are often prone to sagging along the edges.

Who Should Not Sleep on a Pillow-Top Mattress?

In general, pillow-top mattresses are not ideal for sleepers who weigh over 230 pounds or who prefer a firm sleeping surface. Heavier sleepers, especially those who sleep on their back or stomach, need strong support. The cushioning of a pillow-top may cause these sleepers to sink uncomfortably deep.  

Pillow-Top vs. Euro-Top

While pillow-tops and Euro-tops both feature a soft 2- to 4-inch layer sewn to the top of the mattress, there are several important differences between the two models. On a pillow-top, the perimeter of the surface layer is not attached to the mattress layers beneath. By contrast, the perimeter of the Euro-top surface layer is sewn onto the rest of the bed, creating a seamless appearance. Euro-tops also sometimes use denser materials that make the top layer feel more integrated with the mattress.

Euro-tops are often available in a wider range of firmness levels and can accommodate more types of sleepers. They also offer stronger edge support and better durability than traditional pillow-tops. As a result, Euro-tops generally carry a higher price-point. That said, they don’t always offer the immediately plush sensation that sleepers expect from a pillow-top.

Which Mattress Types Feature a Pillow-Top?

Pillow-tops are usually found on hybrid and innerspring mattresses, since they’re typically meant to balance the coils with extra cushioning and contouring. Foam mattresses already offer strong conforming, so it’s rare to find a foam model with a pillow-top. 

Mattress TypeDescriptionHow it Performs
HybridHybrid mattresses combine sturdy coils with comfort layers made of foam, latex, or other conforming materials.These mattresses are intended to provide a balance of cradling and support. Adding a pillow-top boosts the cushioning.
InnerspringThe most simple, traditional mattress design, these beds consist of supportive coils encased in a cover.A pillow-top adds cushioning and pressure relief to the otherwise firm design.

What Should You Look for in a Pillow-Top Mattress?

There are a number of factors to consider when choosing a mattress, whether it’s a pillow-top or not. We’ll walk you through some of the main considerations and explain how they vary according to a sleeper’s individual needs and preferences. 

“Sleeping on a pillow-top mattress gives you that luxury, hotel bed feeling. The plush surface gives you a super soft and high-end feel, providing extra comfort and support. I always describe it as “sleeping on a cloud”, which you hear often when talking about pillow-top and Euro-top mattresses.”
Headshot of author Logan Foley
Logan Foley
Editorial Director

Materials 

Materials determine the quality and feel of the entire mattress, including the pillow-top layer. Common materials used in pillow-tops include foam, latex, wool, and fiberfill. Natural fibers tend to be more durable than synthetic fiberfill, which varies in quality and may break down faster. 

Foam often provides deeper contouring than other materials but ranges widely in quality. In general, low-density foam is less durable than high-density foam. Those who want a more responsive pillow-top layer may prefer latex. The bouncy feel provides strong ease of movement, but this also means it will not hug the body as closely as foam. Latex is generally a more natural and durable material than foam.

The comfort layers and pillow-top rest above a layer of coils. Many hybrid models feature pocketed coils, but there are several other types of coil — offset, continuous wire, and Bonnell — which play a role in the overall feel and durability of the mattress.

Firmness

Pillow-top mattresses tend to feel less firm than traditional hybrid or innerspring mattresses, but keep in mind that mattress firmness is subjective. How a mattress feels depends largely on the sleeper’s body weight and sleeping position. For example, a person who weighs over 230 pounds may find a medium firm mattress too soft and prone to sinking, while a sleeper who weighs 130 pounds might find the same mattress too firm. The best firmness level for you is one that provides a comfortable balance of pressure relief and support. 

While pillow-tops usually suit sleepers who prefer softer beds, pillow-top and Euro-top mattresses are available in a range of firmness levels.

Feel and Support

Pillow-top mattresses are designed for sleepers who like a soft feel to their sleeping surface. The quilted surface layer cradles the body, while coils beneath push back. The balance of cushioning and support is important to maintaining healthy sleep posture. A mattress that promotes spinal alignment will offer enough cradling for the shoulders, hips, and spine while maintaining support for areas like the lower back. 

Pillow-tops are usually meant to feel soft and luxurious, but the rest of the mattress should still provide ample support. 

Watch Video: Benefits of Pressure Relief

In the video below, we’ll discuss why pressure relief is an important mattress quality, ways to determine how well a mattress alleviates pressure, and which types of mattresses generally perform well for pressure relief.

Thickness

Because of the extra layer quilted on top, both pillow-top and Euro-top mattresses tend to have a taller profile than the average mattress. Standard mattress thickness is generally 10 to 12 inches. For a pillow-top, expect a range of 13 to 15 inches. You may need to purchase deep pocket sheets in order to fit the higher profile. 

Price

Shoppers looking for a cheap mattress with pressure relief sometimes opt for a pillow-top innerspring model, which tends to have a lower price-point. These models are typically less durable, but they cost as little as a few hundred dollars. 

Euro-top and pillow-top hybrid models usually carry a steeper price-point because of their higher quality materials and more complex construction. They may cost anywhere from $700 to over $3,000 for a queen size. You can usually find a quality Euro-top or pillow-top hybrid for between $1,000 and $2,000.

Many online mattress companies include free shipping. Some also provide services like old mattress disposal and White Glove delivery. Keep in mind that since pillow-top mattresses often have taller profiles, you may need to invest in deep pocket sheets.

Dive Deeper – In-Depth Mattress Guides

If you’re still not sure if a pillow-top mattress is the best choice for your specific needs, take a look at our other guides broken down by mattress type.

Data-Driven Results You Can Trust

Sleepers’ experiences on a pillow-top mattress can vary widely, and the team at Sleep Foundation has personally tested dozens of models to provide you with the comprehensive information you need to choose the right one. Our testing team includes sleep product experts with different body types and preferences. Using data from a diverse group helps us provide you with well-researched and informed recommendations.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a pillow-top mattress?

A pillow-top mattress has a 2- to 4-inch layer of cushioning sewn directly onto the top to provide a soft, plush sleeping surface. On a standard pillow-top, the edges do not connect to the perimeter of the mattress, while Euro-top mattresses integrate the edges of this top layer into the lower layers of the mattress. 

How does it feel to sleep on a pillow-top mattress?

As the name suggests, sleeping on a pillow-top mattress feels somewhat like having a large, plush pillow beneath your body. That said, the specific sleeping experience varies depending on the materials used and the overall firmness of the layers beneath.

How long does a pillow-top mattress last?

The lifespan of a pillow-top mattress can range from three years to more than 10, depending on the quality of construction and materials. For example, latex generally lasts well over eight years, while low-density foam may start to deteriorate after several years. On average, you can expect a quality pillow-top mattress to last five to seven years. 

To prolong the life of your mattress, practice proper cleaning and care, rotate the bed on occasion, and consider investing in a mattress pad or mattress protector.

Are pillow-top mattresses good for back pain?

A pillow-top mattress that offers a combination of support and pressure relief will likely help relieve back pain. However, the ideal balance for each sleeper will vary according to sleeping position and body weight. 

Is there a difference between a pillow-top and hybrid mattress?

The term pillow-top applies exclusively to mattresses with a soft layer sewn onto the top, but a hybrid mattress is any model that combines a coiled support system with comfort layers made from other materials. While many pillow-top mattresses are also hybrids, not all hybrids have pillow-top designs. 

How can you prevent a pillow-top mattress from sagging?

While pillow-top mattresses may be prone to sagging over time, you can enhance longevity by ensuring that the mattress has a proper bed frame. You can also opt for a mattress made from more durable materials such as latex.

Still have questions?

Our product experts have extensive experience testing just about every sleep product on the market. Send an email to [email protected] or call us at (877) 672-8966 with your questions and we'll help you find exactly what you're looking for.

Learn more about our Editorial Team

Trouble sleeping?

Answer these 5 easy questions to discover your perfect mattress

Trouble sleeping?

Answer these 5 easy questions to discover your perfect mattress

What position do you sleep in?

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Side

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Back

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Stomach

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Do you experience any pain while sleeping?

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Back and/or side pain

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Neck and/or shoulder pain icon

Neck and/or shoulder pain

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Little to no pain icon

Little to no pain

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Do you have any material preferences?

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Innerspring

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Foam

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No preference/ Other

Do you sleep hot?

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Yes

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Do you sleep with a partner?

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Yes

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