pillow top mattress
Bedroom Design

What Is a Pillow Top Mattress? What To Know (Costs + More)

    Last Updated
    January 1, 2023
    min read

    The Benefits and Economic Advantages of Pillow Tops

    A pillow top mattress is a good choice for people who are looking for a comfortable bed, but require more support than a memory foam bed or latex bed.

    What is a Pillow Top Mattress?

    A pillow top mattress isn’t very different from typical mattresses. The bulk of them are firm and are actually an innerspring or coil mattress.

    The additional layer of padding sewn to the top is what makes these mattresses different. The top layer can make the difference of a firm or plush mattress feel. The pillow top is generally at least two inches thick to provide comfort. In the past, consumers have complained about pillow tops shifting, but nowadays the pillow tops are stitched better.

    The padding that makes up a pillow top can comprise of several different materials, including cotton, latex, memory foam, regular—or, polyurethane—foam, or other fibers.

    What Kinds of Pillow Top Mattresses Are Available?

    Pillow top mattresses are available in many sizes, including twin, full, queen, and king. The Beautyrest pillow top mattress, which is produced by Simmons, is one of the most popular pillow top mattresses.

    Pillow Top Mattress vs. Pillow Top Mattress Pad

    People who want to keep their good, old, durable beds, but still want some comfort, can buy pillow top mattress pads instead of a pillow top bed.

    A pillow top mattress pad is a layer of luxury that you can put on top of a mattress for extra comfort. This can save money on buying a new bed.

    These mattress pads are usually $150 or less, depending on what it’s made of, the brand, and the size.

    Pros and Cons to Pillow Top Mattresses

    Benefits to Pillow Top Mattresses

    • These mattresses are affordable. Most mattresses that people associate with comfort, like memory foam or gel, are highly expensive. Pillow top mattresses are cheaper and more affordable.
    • Pillow tops relieve aches and pains. These beds are especially helpful to side sleepers who have hip and shoulder pressure points.
    • Not likely to produce chemicals. Many popular mattresses, especially foam mattresses, are infamous for off-gassing, or producing harmful chemicals. Pillow top mattresses are less likely to do so.

    Common Complaints about the Pillow Top Mattress

    • Pillow tops aren’t durable. While it’s true that any mattress you sleep on will eventually wear out, some people complain that pillow tops compress and lose their effectiveness in a shorter amount of time.
    • Pillow tops aren’t affective for heavier people. Heavier individuals looking for relief from aches and pains may want to investigate other types of mattresses, as many consumers report that heavier people don’t find the relief they look for from pillow tops.
    • Pillow top mattresses sag. In conjunction with the durability issue, some consumers report that their pillow top mattress sags due to the faster break-down of the plus pillow top.

    How Much Do Pillow Top Mattresses Cost?

    One of the reasons pillow top mattresses are so popular is that they are affordable. Whereas other mattresses made of materials like latex and gel memory foam can cost thousands of dollars, most pillow top mattresses are much less.

    The exact cost varies greatly depending on what the pillow top is made of, as well as the material in the rest of the mattress. Brand and size also have a high impact on cost. For example, a king pillow top mattress ranges between just under $1,000 to over $1,400 for higher-end brands.

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    About the authors

    Cecilia Gillen

    Cecilia brings over five years of writing experience primarily centered around lifestyle and health topics. She has a Bachelor’s degree in Media and Journalism from the University of South Dakota. She’s both an advocate for sleep and a night owl at heart.