Best mattress protector 2020: Waterproof, cotton and cooling covers

Sleep more soundly and safeguard your mattress with the best mattress protectors on the market today

Best mattress protector: white bed in white room

The best mattress protectors won't just improve your quality of sleep, they'll pay for themselves over time. Without one, even the best mattresses won't last long; but with this extra layer of protection they'll remain fresh, clean and in good condition for much longer. In other words, they won't really cost you money, but will eventually save you money.

Everyone has different sleeping patterns, so there are lots of types of mattress protector to choose from, to suit your individual needs. These include waterproof mattress protectors, cooling mattress protectors, anti-allergy mattress protectors, eco-friendly mattress protectors, and more. 

In the following guide, we've brought together a range of the best mattress protectors for all budgets and bed sizes, in one handy place. With that said, if your mattress is already past its peak (and you can't stretch to a new one), you might be better picking up one of the best mattress toppers instead.

Why do you need a mattress protector?

The best mattress protectors are a must-buy for anyone who wants a good night's sleep and a clean and well-maintained mattress. Firstly, they shield against stains, spills and other damage, helping to prolong its life and save you cash in the long term. Second, they protect against dirt, dust-mites and other infestations, keeping your bedroom safe and hygenic. And thirdly, they add an extra layer of cushioning that can give you a better night's sleep all round. A waterproof mattress protector, in turn, will protect your mattress from any damaging liquids, while keeping you dry and comfortable at night.

Right now, the Tempur Fit Mattress Protector is our pick for the best mattress protector overall, because it basically ticks all the boxes: it's waterproof, breathable, machine-washable, and comes with a three-year guarantee. If you suffer from allergies, however, we'd recommend the White Company Luxury Anti-Allergy Mattress Protector for relief. Or if overheating during sleep is your biggest problem, then we'd suggest the Snuggledown Proactiv Mattress Protector. That said, there are plenty of other great products to consider, so read on to discover the best mattress protectors on sale right now. 

The best mattress protectors

Best mattress protector: Tempur Fit Mattress Protector

1. Tempur Fit Mattress Protector

The best mattress protector overall

Specifications
Best for: All-round use
Suitable for: Mattress depths of 21-27 cm
Size: Small single, single, double, king, super king
Material: Tencel, polyurethane
Quilted: No
Waterproof: Yes
Reasons to buy
+Breathable, absorbent Tencel+Waterproofing without discomfort+Can be tumble dried 
Reasons to avoid
-Not the cheapest

The words “waterproof mattress protector” might summon up images of crinkly plastic sheets, but the Tempur Fit Mattress Protector is an ultra-thin, breathable, cotton mattress protector that puts paid to that idea straight away. Rather than employing a sweaty plastic layer to deal with spills and leaks, it uses a smart polyurethane membrane in conjunction with a breathable, absorbent Tencel surface layer to keep things dry, comfortable and undamaged. 

Ideal for use with Tempur memory foam mattresses – but suitable for any single, double, king or king size mattress with a depth of 21-27cm – it has an easy stretch design and deep sides to cover all eventualities. Feeling lazy? You can choose to sleep on it directly – like a sheet – or underneath your favourite bed sheets, as usual. It can also be machine washed at up to 90C (and tumble dried up to 70C), while a three-year guarantee gives you long-term peace of mind. We think that for the money, the Tempur Fir Mattress Protector is the best mattress protector right now.  

Best Mattress Protector: Nectar

2. Nectar Mattress Protector

The best mattress protector for preventing overheating

Specifications
Best for: Overheaters
Size: Single, small double, double, king, super king
Material: Tencel jersey and polyester
Quilted: No
Waterproof: Yes
Reasons to buy
+100% waterproof+Eco choice+Good if you get hot at night
Reasons to avoid
-Only returnable if unopened or faulty

Like the Tempur above, the Nectar Mattress Protector is made from Tencel – a material extracted from natural wood cellulose and manufactured into a very soft and ultra breathable fabric. That makes this temperature-regulating mattress protector great for anyone who tends to overheat at night. More absorbent than cotton, and softer and cooler than linen, Tencel is extremely eco-friendly, and the makers claim it's a 100% waterproof mattress protector. It certainly seemed to take what we threw at it with ease, although we have to confess that with no toddlers in the house, we possibly didn’t test it to the limit. Either way, if you tend to overheat, the Nectar mattress protector is a particularly fine choice. 

Best mattress protector: The White Company Luxury Anti-Allergy

3. The White Company Luxury Anti-Allergy Mattress Protector

This best mattress protector for allergies

Specifications
Best for: Allergies
Size: Cot, single, double, king, super king, emperor
Material: Cotton
Quilted: No
Waterproof: No
Reasons to buy
+Great for allergy sufferers+Sizes from cot to emperor

A clinically useful mattress protector doesn’t always have to look like one. This geometric quilted mattress protector from The White Company wouldn’t look out of place in a luxury hotel, so if you’re big on Insta-ready roomscapes, but not so big on bed bugs, you might want to take a look at something like this. The pure cotton mattress cover is filled with plush layers for comfort, and finished off with a hygiene treatment to stop dust mites and bacteria from settling, making it our best mattress protector for allergy sufferers.

Forgarty mattress protector

(Image credit: Fogarty)

4. Forgarty Soft Touch Mattress Protector

The best mattress protector for those on a budget

Specifications
Best for: Saving money
Sizes: Single, Double, Kingsize, Super Kingsize
Material: Polyester, polypropylene, hollowfibre
Quilted: Yes
Waterproof: No
Reasons to buy
+Smooth feel+Low price+Easy fitting
Reasons to avoid
-Not the highest quality materials

This quilted mattress protector feels luxuriously smooth and silky to the touch, so the low price (just £16 at time of writing) came as quite a surprise to us. The Fogarty Soft Touch Mattress Protector is lovely in use too: embossed with a microfibre cover, it's filled with hollowfibre for added comfort and has elasticated corners for easy fitting. It's also machine washable, suitable for mattresses up to 30cm deep, and a deeper 35cm option is also available. Overall, then, although this isn't the highest quality mattress protector on our list, particularly in terms of the materials used, it's certainly a great option if you're counting the pennies.

Wool Room mattress protector

(Image credit: Wool Room)

5. Deluxe Washable Wool Mattress Protector

The best mattress protector made from natural materials

Specifications
Best for: Ethical shoppers
Sizes: Single, Double, King, Superking, Emperor, Large Emperor, Single XL, Small Double
Material: Cotton, wool
Quilted: Yes
Waterproof: No
Reasons to buy
+Luxury feel +Chemical free+Ethically sourced
Reasons to avoid
-Not the cheapest

Want a mattress protector made from natural materials, that are sourced responsibility and sustainably? Then you won't find finer than the Deluxe Washable Wool Mattress Protector from The Wool Company. It's hand-crafted from 250gsm of high quality British wool, combined with an outer cover that's made from unbleached, 200-thread organic cotton. And that all adds up to a truly luxurious feel. The unique combination of fillings, free from chemical additives, helps it reduce heat and moisture effectively, giving you a natural, healthy sleep. 

Crib Mattress Protector

(Image credit: The Little Green Sheep)

6. The Little Green Sheep Organic Waterproof Crib Mattress Protector

The best mattress protector for cribs and play mats

Specifications
Best for: Tiny tots
Size: 38x89cm
Material: Cotton
Quilted: No
Waterproof: Yes
Reasons to buy
+Waterproof+Light on crinkling+No fitting required
Reasons to avoid
-One size only

This oh-so-soft mattress protector for crib mattresses is made from a breathable, extra absorbent cotton, creating a sleeping environment for your child that’s both dry and comforting. This cover is not fitted, but lies flat, so the sides of the mattress can breathe. Meanwhile, an Oeko-Tex Class 1 (Baby) waterproof membrane helps protects against accidents and protect against dust mites. The Little Green Sheep Organic Waterproof Crib Mattress Protector is also machine-washable, tumble dryer-safe and best of all, light on noisy crinkling, however much your little one tosses and turns. And as the mattress is flat, not fitted, it is suitable for not only most cribs, but also play mats and changing mats.

Not kitted out with a mattress yet? Head to our guide to the best mattress for toddlers

Mattress protector

(Image credit: Slumberdown)

7. Slumberdown Teflon mattress protector

The best mattress protector made using Teflon

Specifications
Best for: Easy care
Sizes: Single, double, king
Material: Teflon, polyester
Quilted: Yes
Waterproof: No
Reasons to buy
+Great value+Reinforced elasticated straps+Machine and tumble dryer friendly
Reasons to avoid
-Not suitable for mattresses deeper than 30cm

You might be forgiven for thinking that a Teflon coating is just for frying pans, but in this case it serves to protect your mattress – old or new – from sweat, pets and occasional spills. Although the Slumberdown Teflon mattress protector is more water resistant than waterproof, it does ensure that small spills run off rather than soak in, and can be quickly wiped to prevent leakage and staining of the mattress below. The outer is soft to the touch, it's machine washable and it can be popped into a tumble dryer too; so even if it does have to cope with the worst, it can be quickly cleaned and put back on the bed within a few hours. And all this for a very reasonable price indeed.

Snuggledown Proactiv Mattress Protector

8. Snuggledown Proactiv Mattress Protector

A great mattress protector for temperature regulation

Specifications
Best for: Regulating temperature
Size: Single, double, king, super king
Material: Polyester, Tencel
Quilted: No
Waterproof: No
Reasons to buy
+Breathable and wicking fibres+Ethical and eco-friendly production
Reasons to avoid
-Wash temperature limits

Who knew you could put sports-inspired materials and technology to work even while you’re sleeping? Snuggledown did, and thus this high-tech mattress protector was born. Naturally sourced and super-absorbent Tencel fibres are combined with micro polyesters to wick away moisture for a non-sticky sleep, even on balmy nights. Plus, responsible sourcing, lower-waste production, and UK manufacturing to reduce the Snuggledown Proactiv Mattress Protector's carbon footprint mean you can rest easy in more ways than one.

Best mattress protector: Panda Eco

9. Panda Eco mattress protector

The best mattress protector for sensitive skin or eczema

Specifications
Best for: Sensitive skin
Size: EU single, EU double, EU king, emperor, twin, UK double, UK king, UK super king
Material: Cotton and bamboo rayon mix
Quilted: No
Waterproof: Yes
Reasons to buy
+Regulates nighttime temperature+Machine washable and suitable for tumble-drying+Two-year guarantee
Reasons to avoid
-Takes a while to dry when washed

Created from a blend of bamboo rayon and cotton, the Panda Bamboo Mattress Protector is a durable, breathable mattress protector. It's hypoallergenic, naturally antibacterial, and tested and certified by OEKO-TEX Standard 100, meaning it’s resistant to mould, fungi, mildew and dust mites. It draws out moisture too, so as well as being a great choice for the more eco-minded – bamboo rayon takes a third less water to produce than cotton – it’s also good for people who overheat at night. The waterproof layer is thin and light and, more importantly we feel, doesn’t produce a nasty crinkling sound when you lie on it.

Best mattress protector: Sealy Balance

10. Sealy Balance mattress protector

Won’t ruck or clump however restlessly you sleep

Specifications
Best for: Cushioning, restless sleepers
Sizes: Single, double king, super king
Material: Microfibre outer, DuPont fibre interior
Quilted: Yes
Waterproof: No
Reasons to buy
+Soft exterior+Springy inside+Hypoallergenic
Reasons to avoid
-Won’t fit deeper mattresses

The neat parallel-line quilting of the Sealy Balance mattress protector ensures the filling of smooth, silk-like springy Serica fibre stays evenly distributed inside. This gives you a balanced, relaxed and comfortable night, while at the same time protecting your mattress from minor spills. The elastic straps aren’t the most robust we encountered, which might not make it the best choice for extra deep mattresses. But they did keep the protector in place even for the most restless of sleepers. 

John Lewis Specialist Quilted Mattress Protector

11. John Lewis Specialist Quilted Mattress Protector

The best waterproof protector for deep-sided mattresses

Specifications
Best for: Deep mattresses
Size: Single, double, king, super king
Material: Polyester, cotton, polyurethane
Quilted: Yes
Waterproof: Yes
Reasons to buy
+Low-key, effective waterproofing+Very comfortable
Reasons to avoid
-Synthetic

The John Lewis Specialist Quilted Mattress Protector has the benefit of being waterproof with none of the squeaking or crinkling you might expect. Users say you’d never know it was a waterproof mattress protector, and that while it’s held up well to complete soakings, it offers a superbly comfortable sleeping experience too. Also, its dimensions means this one is recommended for very thick, deep-sided mattresses that are often stumped by regular bedding. If that's what you have, this is the best mattress protector for you.

Best mattress protector: Soak & Sleep Waterproof Anti-Bed Bug

12. Soak & Sleep Waterproof Anti-Bed Bug mattress protector

A soft jersey cover that provides all-round protection

Specifications
Best for: Whole mattress coverage
Sizes: Cot bed, single, small double, double, king, super king, emperor
Material: Jersey cotton and polyurethane
Quilted: No
Waterproof: Yes
Reasons to buy
+Soft jersey cotton top+Adjustable for 30cm and 40cm depths +Zip closure with Velcro tabs
Reasons to avoid
-Not suitable for bedwetters

Encasing the mattress completely, with a zip and Velcro fastenings to ensure it stays firmly in place, the Soak & Sleep Waterproof Anti-Bed Bug mattress protector is jersey-cotton topped, and a good choice for renters, giving total all-round protection on pre-used beds. Although the TPU waterpoof layer isn’t likely to cope with regular bedwetters, it’s quiet and more than capable of repelling smaller accidents, preventing the mattress underneath from minor stains from the odd water or tea spill. The fit and quality are high, it can be machine washed at 40˚C, and it carries a two-year guarantee.