I write a lot about coils, memory foam, and edge support, the guts of the mattress. I have never written about mattress covers. Mattresses used to be made with polyester covers, which could be wiped clean of stains and soils. While some would prefer this to the current trend of natural fibers, I, for one, am glad that they are gone. Those old covers didn’t stretch, and the beds always felt firm. Also, they were HOT. There was no breathing done through these mattress covers. They were like crib mattresses, for goodness sake. But that’s enough of complaining about the past…
Now, covers are made out of cotton, bamboo, cashmere, stretch blends, wool, just about anything that’s soft, comfortable, and breathable. What’s the big difference between them? Cotton mattress covers are the least expensive, but still breathable and soft. They have varying degrees of stretch, but are a great option for less expensive beds. My main complaint? They can pill if something rubs against them too much, but hopefully you’re using a mattress protector, so this wouldn’t be a problem. Ahem. A great bed with a cotton cover is the King Koil Eternity Euro Top.
Bamboo (which is my personal fave) is soft, breathable, and comfortable. Also, it’s renewable! This means that it’s a green product. I’m sure it seems weird to sleep on what’s basically wood, but it’s super luxurious, and makes a great mattress cover. A little more expensive, but as it is always for saving the Earth, right? For a great bed with a bamboo cover, check out the Spirit Sleep Legacy.
Cashmere covers were all the rage for top of the line beds a few years ago. They are fuzzy, comfortable, breathable, but they sleep a little warmer than cotton and bamboo. Also, they are super expensive. Overall, I’d recommend the previous two over cashmere, unless you have a thing for it, and want to tell all your friends that you’re sleeping on it. The Luxury Support Cashmere is an air mattress with this luxurious mattress cover.
Stretch blends, such as the Beautyrest Evenloft cover, are great hybrids. They are a combination of cotton, spandex, and sometimes polyester. They are breathable, soft, and super stretchy in all directions. These are great because they really form fit the bed, don’t take away any of the softness, and provide a little extra motion separation. The Beautyrest Leedsgate Plush Evenloft is a fabulous bed with the patented Evenloft stretch mattress cover.
Finally, wool. I’m not a huge fan of wool for many reasons, mainly because just writing about it makes me itchy. If you’re a cold person, these covers will keep you a little warmer, as they are not as breathable as the other options. Some brands used to have two sided mattresses with wool on one side and cotton on the other, for different seasons. Those went the way of the cassette when everyone switched to a one-sided mattress, but some manufacturers still use wool covers and wool padding in their beds. I say, just buy another blanket. Currently, we don’t have any beds with wool mattress covers. Coincidence? I think not.
The cover can make or break your mattress, so select wisely!