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Can You Sleep on Just a Mattress Topper?

Can You Sleep on Just a Mattress Topper?

A mattress topper makes a world of difference when it comes to bedtime. We appreciate the level of support a firm mattress offers. However, no one wants to wake up with achy joints simply because they slept on a too-firm mattress.

Now, a mattress topper will maximize the luxury and comfort you get from your bed. It works by cushioning your body and joints from the stiff surface of the mattress, ensuring that you get a combination of support and comfort.

And yes, it’s one investment that most people are now considering, and it works just fine above the mattress. But have you ever thought about using a mattress topper without the mattress? Can it work?

Well, that’s what we are going to talk about in this article. Herein, we’ve included everything you need to know about laying yourself on a mattress topper without a mattress. So yes, keep following closely to discover the facts!

Can You Sleep on a Mattress Topper Without a Mattress?

If you are thinking about sleeping on a mattress topper without a mattress, then it’s possible. However, whether that’s viable for your case depends. I mean, some mattress toppers will serve you well alone. However, for others, you’ll need to think again.

So yes, if you are asking yourself if you can safely sleep on just a mattress topper, the answer isn’t as straightforward as first expressed. So, what are some of the determinants in this case? Well, let’s dive into that right away!

You see, there are two main determinants on whether you can sleep on a standalone mattress topper. They include;

  • The type of the mattress topper
  • The nature of the floor

The Type of the Mattress Topper

On the type of mattress topper, of course, not all options will support your needs. Manufacturers usually make toppers intending to have them serve on top of mattresses, just as the name suggests. As such, most of them may not support independent use.

Most of the mattress toppers in the market are just not thick enough to give you the combination of support and comfort. Such toppers don’t work best for sole use as they don’t have the additional amount of cushioning to keep you comfortable from the firm surface.

If you are going to use a mattress topper alone, then buy one that’s thick enough. That’s the only surefire way to enjoy some comfort. The goal is to try and obtain one that will afford you the comfort you need when still having the ability to offer at least a small amount of support the missing mattress would give.

The Nature of the Floor

The nature of the floor matters as much as the thickness of the topper you want to buy. Sleeping on a hard floor with a mattress topper alone won’t be a comfortable experience.

Sure, if young and healthy, then that will likely not cause you any serious issues. However, for the elderly and people with problematic joints, getting up from the floor could be troublesome.

The most unfavorable flooring for use with mattress toppers alone is ceramic tiles and natural stone. You see, these floor types aren’t just super hard but also the coldest flooring options available. The cold is definitely going to radiate up through the topper, and that could make you sick.

The first few days are usually the toughest, even with a mattress. As you adjust to your new bed, you will find sleeping on a mattress topper alone on the floor to become more comfortable.

Nevertheless, that doesn’t mean that you can keep sleeping there. Mattress toppers are only made to serve on mattresses and not as mattresses. So yes, only use a mattress topper as a temporary sleeping solution.

Does a Mattress Topper Help You Sleep Better?

Yes, a mattress topper will help you sleep better. In fact, the reason people buy mattress toppers is to improve the feel of their beds. That way, sleeping becomes more comfortable, making it likely to get quality sleep.

True, mattresses give us the support we need when sleeping. But again, when it comes to the warm, fluffy comfort we all need in bed, they are all amiss, and that’s where a topper comes in handy.

So yes, if your mattress is overly firm and you feel that it doesn’t give the kind of comfort you need, getting a decent mattress topper brings an extra layer of cushioning that will immensely boost your sleeping comfort and experience.

You can also consider getting a mattress topper if you are sleeping on a bad mattress. If you find it difficult to fall asleep, wake up tired, and experience aches and pains, then you could be having a mattress that needs replacement.

A topper here will improve the cushioning to make sleeping comfortable. But again, a topper won’t provide a permanent solution, so only use it as you accumulate money to invest in a new mattress.

Can You Sleep on a Memory Foam Mattress Topper the First Night?

Yes, you can sleep on a memory foam mattress topper the first night. However, that comes with a caveat – you first have to allow the topper to expand and settle. That will usually take 5 hours, but you can expect this time to vary a little.

Most manufacturers will tell you that full expansion for a memory foam mattress topper will need a day up to about three days. So yes, how you feel on a memory foam the second day may differ from how it felt on the first night.

You may still notice it taking longer for your mattress topper to expand, and that’s nothing strange. When that happens, there are a few possible reasons;

  • Your space is too cold
  • You bought a super-thick topper
  • The mattress topper remained compressed in the box for long
  • You got yourself a defective topper

For cold spaces, consider heating up the room to at least 20 degrees Celcius. Foams become more pliable with exposure to higher temperatures. So yes, increasing the temperatures of your space will cause your topper to expand.

For super-thick or dense memory foam toppers, you may have to be a little patient as things slowly fall into place. You can still opt to sleep on it as a way of catalyzing the expansion process. But that comes with a price to pay – you won’t find it comfortable. Again, you will need to put up with the odors the topper releases when new.

In addition, always ensure that you remove a topper from the box immediately after the package arrives. That will help to prevent the expansion delays caused by keeping the topper confined in a small space. And for the defective toppers, ensure that you return them as soon as possible for replacement or refund.

Can You Sleep on a Memory Foam Topper on the Floor?

Yes, you can sleep with a memory foam topper on the floor. However, sleeping on the floor isn’t healthy, even with a mattress, leave alone the topper. So yes, if it’s the only option you have, it should only go for a few days.

You see, you are going to find it quite uncomfortable to sleep on the floor. That’s something you should expect when using any mattress topper, not just memory foam. And if you are a side sleeper, then you may struggle to get the comfort you need.

Memory foam is the stiffest in the first time of use. Therefore, the first night is always the most uncomfortable. Nonetheless, as you sleep on the topper, the material continues to soften, then it eventually becomes more comfortable.  

Again, it’s worth knowing that sleeping with a memory foam topper on the floor may void its warranty. Just so you know, the warranty of a product may become void when you use the item for a different use other than the one intended.

So yes, you may find it difficult to get a replacement or refund after the manufacturer knows that you used the topper alone on the floor.

Do You Put Sheets Over a Mattress Topper?

Yes, sheets need to come on top of the mattress topper. Ideally, a mattress topper should go on top of your mattress but underneath the sheets. As such, if you were thinking of covering your mattress topper with sheets, then you are good to go!

Some of the mattress toppers offer a way at the corners to attach them to the mattress. However, others don’t have this feature, meaning they are likely to clump up in the course of your sleep. To ensure that doesn’t happen, you will find a sheet helpful.

Adding a sheet on a mattress topper will also make your sleeping surface more comfortable. Sheets won’t make any difference in the level of cushioning. However, they usually come with skin-friendlier materials than most mattress toppers. So yes, spreading a sheet on top of a mattress topper is necessary – and for many reasons.

Can You Use a Memory Foam Mattress Topper as a Mattress?

With all that has been said, what’s the conclusion of the matter. Is it possible to use a memory foam mattress topper in place of a mattress? Well, definitely! Just be sure to get one with a good amount of thickness. That way, you get both the softness you need for a comfortable sleeping experience as well as some support.

Nevertheless, no topper can ever replace a mattress. Not even the thickest options out there. So yes, don’t count on a mattress topper for many days. Using it as a standalone unit won’t damage it, but it isn’t the healthiest place to pass the nights.


A mattress topper is ideal for use on top of mattresses. But it can also serve alone before buying a mattress. But again, when using it alone, don’t expect the same amount of comfort you get when using the two together.

Thus, even if you are going to sleep on a mattress topper alone, we recommend that you get a mattress as soon as possible. That’s the only surefire way to a night of quality sleep.