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Our Guide to Campervan Mattress Toppers

I think we’d all pretty much agree that owning a campervan or motorhome is a lot of fun. You can take to the road and explore while still having most of the comforts of home on board. But when it comes to sleeping, the comforts of home don’t always travel with you. This is where a campervan mattress topper comes in.

A mattress topper for your campervan or motorhome will increase your comfort. It’ll help smooth out any ridges in your bed and also add that all-important layer of extra padding too.

campervan mattress topper

In this post, we are going to be taking a look into mattress toppers. So whether you have a campervan, motorhome, or even a caravan, we’ll do our best to discover what you need to ensure a good nights sleep when you’re away from home.


HOW TO CHOOSE A CAMPERVAN MATTRESS TOPPER


Firstly, you need to decide what function you want it to fulfil. Do you need it to bolster a thin or worn mattress? Or do you want it purely for added comfort, or to aid an aching back or other physical ailment? If you are looking for extra support for your back and joints, then memory foam mattress toppers are usually the most effective as they’re better at supporting your body.

You also need to be aware of the weight of the mattress topper, as if you haven’t got a fixed bed, you will need to be able to move it into place easily. It is also worth bearing in mind that your mattress topper will need to be stored somewhere when not being used. (We look more at storage further down the page.)

 

What are the advantages of using a mattress topper?

  • If you sleep on top of your motorhome or campervan mattress (seat cushions), then before too long (if they haven’t already) they will start to compress and wear. A mattress topper will add a layer of padding and protection.
  • A mattress topper will provide a barrier between you and your sleeping ‘base’. Without any significant barrier between you and whatever you are sleeping on, perspiration may affect and discolour your mattress/cushions. (Apparently, we can release up to a couple of pints of moisture a night, through our sweat and breath.) Eeek!
  • Mattress toppers are wonderful at helping relieve pain caused by sleeping on a ‘too hard’, too thin’, or unsupportive mattress. Using a topper in your campervan or motorhome will help to relieve pressure, and cushion the spots that need it, i.e. the hip and shoulder areas.
  • The right type of mattress topper will provide enough support so that your spine can fall into a natural position and your body won’t ‘sag’, helping to prevent discomfort and aches and pains.
  • A mattress topper is also good at damping the transmission of movement. So, if your partner (or dog) toss and turn all night, then you may find that using a mattress topper will deaden some of the movement, and enable you to get a better nights sleep!

Let’s look at the different types of mattress toppers

We’ll explore the different types of mattress toppers on the market, so you can make the choice of which topper will best suit your needs.

Memory Foam Mattress Toppers

Memory foam is one of the most popular materials for mattress toppers, and appears to be a really good all-round choice.

Here are the best points…

  • Memory foam reacts to your body heat and moulds to your shape, giving plenty of support.
  • Besides making it very comfy to sleep on, it also helps to cushion your body and alleviate aches and pains.
  • It also absorbs movement, helping you get a decent night sleep even if your partner is a tosser and turner.
  • Another advantage is that a memory foam topper won’t wrinkle, and will spring back to the same height every time you use it.

The main disadvantages are…

  • Some people find that memory foam makes them too warm when sleeping, as it holds body heat.
  • New memory foam toppers tend to have a chemical smell and will continue to off-gas for some time. (It is best to unroll your new topper and let it air for a while outside, or somewhere with a good airflow, before using it in your vehicle.)

We have a memory foam topper ourselves and are converts as we absolutely LOVE it! If you are interested in a memory foam topper for your vehicle then this Memory Foam Mattress Overlay with Travel Bag on Amazon is worth looking at – it has good reviews and comes with a stretch storage bag.


Egg Crate Mattress Topper

An ‘egg crate’ topper or pad is so called as it resembles, yes you’ve guessed it, an egg crate. It has a bumpy foam surface that’s designed to relieve pressure.

Here are the best points…

  • Easy to roll up, making them good for camping or travelling.
  • Lightweight and portable which makes them easy to store.
  • Relatively cheap.
  • They can be stacked if you need more thickness.
  • Some egg crate foam toppers can be cut to fit a specific shape and size.
  • The egg crate design may be cooler to sleep on because the egg crate structure provides ventilation.

The main disadvantages are…

  • An egg crate topper is thin and pliable. It will form permanent indentations in the topper as the foam breaks down.
  • Egg crate won’t provide as much padding and comfort as some other materials such as memory foam.
  • Be aware that, like memory foam and synthetic latex, egg crate foam will off-gas.

If you just need a layer of foam to place on top of your sleeping area to give a little more depth and comfort, a standard foam egg crate topper may work for you. If you like the idea of egg crate but want the benefits of memory foam too, you may want to look at this 2″ deep double visco memory foam topper with eggshell crate on Amazon. (It is anti-dust mite and hypoallergenic which also makes it a great choice for allergy sufferers, as well as those with a bad back.)


Hollow Fibre Mattress Topper

Microfibre is a synthetic material that is often used in pillows and duvets. Though it doesn’t offer much support, a hollow fibre topper is an affordable choice.

Here are the best points…

  • There are differing levels of firmness offered by this type of topper.
  • This type of mattress topper is relatively inexpensive.
  • There is no odour with this topper.
  • Are available in anti-allergy options.

The main disadvantages are…

  • There isn’t much support or cushioning with this type of topper.
  • These types of mattress toppers will tend to compress with use and may become lumpy.
  • Pretty short lifespan when compared to some other types of toppers.
  • This type of topper will flatten and will need regularly shaking to fluff it back up.

A hollow fibre topper is a good basic option if you are on a budget and looking to rejuvenate an old mattress, though maybe using a duvet as a topper would do a similar job?


Latex Mattress Topper

Latex mattress toppers are of two types; either synthetic rubber, or alternatively, made from rubber tree sap (which is natural but very expensive).

Here are the best points…

  • Latex mattress toppers are very durable.
  • Like memory foam, it can provide good support for those with back or joint issues, plus also doing well on motion isolation.
  • Latex is usually anti-microbial and pretty anti-allergenic, unless of course you have a sensitivity to latex!
  • Latex will contour to your body shape and bounces back into shape after use.

The main disadvantages are…

  • Latex mattress toppers can be expensive, especially the natural latex ones.
  • When new, Latex mattress toppers can give off an odour.
  • They are obviously no good if you are allergic to latex or rubber.
  • Latex can trap heat, so it may feel warm to sleep on.
  • Some say Latex toppers can be a bit too firm or bouncy for their tastes.

Latex and memory foam mattress toppers share a lot of the same plus points, but I am not sure how well latex would take to being rolled and stored? If you are interested in a latex topper then you can check out this Talalay Latex Mattress Topper on Amazon.


Duvalay Mattress Topper

You’ve probably heard of Duvalay. They came to prominence when they won investment from Hilary Devey on Dragons Den. They specialise in bedding products designed for campervans, motorhomes, caravans and boats. 

Here are the best points…

  • Duvalay have a range of portable memory foam mattress toppers.
  • If you are looking for a bedding solution for an awkward or non-standard space, they do shaped bespoke mattresses, mattress toppers and bedding.
  • Duvalay mattress toppers have all of the same advantages of other memory foam toppers (see memory foam mattress toppers above).

The main disadvantages are…

  • Can be expensive to buy.
  • Some people find that memory foam makes them too warm when sleeping, as it holds body heat.
  • As mentioned previously, new memory foam toppers tend to have a strong chemical smell and will continue to off-gas for a time. (It is worth unrolling your topper and letting it air for a while outside, or somewhere with a good airflow, before using it in your vehicle.)

I think Duvalay comes into its own if you need a custom product (though don’t forget that cheap egg crate foam can be cut to size if you are on a budget). If you need more information on Duvalay products, visit the Duvalay website.


Our personal experience of a mattress topper…

When we first went away in our camper we put a sheet straight on top of the seat cushions that made up our bed. It wasn’t very comfortable!

We then discovered that if we turned the seat cushions over, the bottom edges of the cushions were flat rather than rounded – that helped. But my husband was still waking every morning with an aching back.

So we did away with the sheet and slept on a double duvet instead, and though not perfect it was better – much better. Then my mother and father-in-law, gave us a memory foam mattress topper. What a game changer that was. We were converts!


What type of mattress topper would we suggest for a campervan or motorhome

As we have experience of a memory foam mattress topper, it has obviously had some bearing on our choice as we’re really pleased with ours.

So we’d recommend a memory foam mattress topper:

Such as this double size Memory Foam Mattress Overlay with Travel Bag on Amazon.

Alternatively, the double visco memory foam topper with eggshell crate is also a good choice.


Our tips for using and storing a memory foam mattress topper:

  • We place our memory foam topper inside a double duvet cover – it fits perfectly and covers the protective casing the topper comes in. That way we can just change the duvet cover and wash when needed.
  • The duvet cover also acts as our bottom sheet. So when it comes time to make up the bed, we just roll out the mattress topper. It makes bed making much quicker and easier.
  • When we’ve finished with the topper in the morning, we roll it tightly (involves a bit of effort) then secure it with two cam buckle straps to hold it in place.
  • We feed our rolled mattress topper into the storage space under our seats, squashed in with our duvet and pillows. If you haven’t room, then perhaps you could stand yours in your wardrobe (or even your shower if you have one).

Are there alternatives to using a mattress topper?

The short answer to that is – yes, there are.

1. Sleep on top of a duvet:

Use a double duvet (in a duvet cover) in place of a mattress topper. It will help to smooth out the joins and add a layer of comfort. We did this and it worked well for us until we were given a memory foam topper.

Tip: If making up your bed from seat cushions, turn them over so you are laying on the flat side rather than the main top face (which has curved edges), it is much more comfortable that way. This will also help protect the good side from wear and tear.

2. Use a self-inflating sleeping mat:

A self inflating sleeping mat will add a layer of comfort over your usual sleeping surface. This KAMUI self inflating sleeping mat on Amazon is 5cm thick and it can be connected to another mat to make a bigger sleeping area.

My husband used a sleeping mat like this when first trying to get relief from our sagging bed cushions, he said it helped. Maybe this is something to think about if you are looking for an alternative to a mattress topper.

3. You could use an airbed:

I wouldn’t personally fancy having to pump an airbed mattress up and deflate it every day, but if you are intending to leave your mattress in place, then an air bed may work for you. I particularly like this Coleman comfort double airbed on Amazon, as it has two separate air chambers so each user can decide their own comfort level.

Tip: I’ve always found airbeds are a lot more comfortable when not pumped to full capacity, as that way they are not quite so bouncy and have a little more give in them.


That concludes our guide to campervan mattress toppers:

I hope you found the information useful. Sleep comfy and we’ll see you on the road. 🙂


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