The Best Waterproof Mattress Protectors for a Clean, Dry Bed

Your mattress is not something you can throw in the wash if it gets dirty or stained; it needs a protective cover that can be cleaned.

By Sheryl Grassie

Mattress protectors are used to safeguard against stains and dirt; they keep spills from soaking into your mattress. Protectors vary greatly, but can be as simple as a thin cotton cover used to keep the mattress clean.

There are many types of protectors that come in a wide variety of materials: different options to fit different needs. Do you have a newborn and need a mattress protector for a crib? Do you occasionally spill a glass of water on your bedside table? The need to protect a mattress from spills, leaks, and stains of various kinds exists across the spectrum of bed sizes and age ranges—everyone’s mattress can benefit from a protective cover.

Let’s look at our top picks and things to consider when purchasing a mattress protector.


Our Picks for the Best Waterproof Mattress Protectors

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SafeRest Premium Hypoallergenic Waterproof Mattress Protector

The SafeRest mattress protector bills itself as the #1 selling protector. It is a great all-around protector and has a nice price point. It is made of cotton with a terry cotton surface and is vinyl free. It has a back coating that is waterproof and breathes.

This protector is hypoallergenic and protects against dust mites, bacteria, and allergens. It locks out fluids and is great for incontinence. The materials are noiseless and do not alter the feel of your mattress. It is designed like a fitted sheet, has a 10-year warranty, and fits up to an 18” mattress, not to mention, it is machine wash and tumble dry safe.

  • Price: $24.95-$34.95, depending on size
  • Sizes: Twin, Twin XL, Full, Queen, King, California King
  • Rating and Reviews: 4.3 out of 5 stars, 36,492 reviews

Luna Premium Hypoallergenic 100% Waterproof Mattress Protector

In researching highly rated protectors, the Luna’s vinyl free cover is consistently a contender. Made in the US, this cotton protector has a 100% waterproof membrane that retards liquids. It is a fitted sheet style that has the “Luna airflow technology” allowing air to travel through the protector to keep it cool.

It guards against dust mites, bacteria, and allergens. It naturally absorbs moisture, and will not change the feel of your mattress. A great support for health conditions like asthma and allergies, the Luna has a 15-year warranty and is fully machine washable and dryable.

  • Price: $29.95-$49.95, depending on size
  • Sizes: Twin, Twin XL, Full, Queen, King, California King
  • Rating and Reviews: 4.3 out of 5 stars, 8,078 reviews

Avocado Green Mattress: Organic Quilted Mattress Pad Protector

If you are looking for a natural alternative to your average mattress protector, the Avocado green mattress protector is a great choice. It is made of certified organic cotton that is plush, quiet, and very comfortable. It is breathable but not fully waterproof—not exactly suited for those with incontinence issues or children still in diapers.

It retards liquids and stains, dust mites, and allergens. It comes with a 100 night trial and a no-questions-asked return up to that point. It has a 1-year warranty and financing is available. A fitted sheet style, it is washable and dryable. The company boasts fair wages and supports sustainable causes.

  • Price: $199-$299, depending on size
  • Sizes: Twin, Twin XL, Full, Queen, King, California King
  • Rating and Reviews: 4.8 out of 5 stars, 471 reviews

Run2Bed Mattress Protector

Run2Bed offers a full line of cotton protectors, including covers for cribs, split mattresses, and RV beds. They are 100% waterproof with a protective, breathable barrier. A fitted sheet style, they guard against dust mites and allergens. Run2Bed is super soft and absorbent. The protector is also free from vinyl and other harmful chemicals. Easily washable and dryable, it has a 10-year warranty.

  • Price: $22.95-$68.99, depending on size
  • Sizes: Crib, Twin, Twin XL, Full, Short Full, Queen, RV Short Queen, Split Queen, King, Split King, California King, Split California King
  • Rating and Reviews: 4.3 out of 5 stars, 152 reviews

SureGuard Mattress Protector

SureGuard is a 100% waterproof mattress encasement cover that surrounds the entire mattress. It is six-sided and zippered. Made primarily from cotton, it blocks liquids as well as allergens like mold, mildew, bacteria, and dust mites. It is soft and noise free. Free from toxic chemicals, it is machine wash-and-dry compatible with a 100% cotton terry top. It is soft, breathable, and cool with a 10-year-quality guarantee.

  • Price: $49.97-$59.97, depending on size
  • Sizes: Twin, Twin XL, Full, Queen, King, California King
  • Rating and Reviews: 4.5 out of 5 stars, 2,719 reviews

Why Do I Need a Mattress Protector?

In general, mattress protectors are designed to act as a barrier between everything happening on top of your bed and the mattress itself. A window left open during a rainstorm, a toddler with a leaky diaper, night sweats, your dog’s drool, and everything else that can happen to a mattress to stain it or get it wet.

Mattress protectors are thought of as insurance for your bed and insurance for your health. Good mattresses are expensive and a good protector is worth the investment. Easily washable, protective covers keep your bed fresh and extend the life of your mattress. Sheets alone can act as a wick, drawing liquids into the mattress. Dust mites, bacteria, and humidity can all establish themselves in your mattress, making it unhealthy.  A mattress protector guards against mold and mildew, and acts as a barrier, so allergens and other unwanted elements don’t take up residence in your mattress.

Things to Consider When Purchasing a Waterproof Mattress Protector

Keeping the Mattress Dry

There are all kinds of mattress pads and mattress protectors. If your goal is to guard against liquids, in the form of spills, leaks, and incontinence, you want a waterproof protector. These come in fitted sheet styles, which cover the top and sides of the mattress, or a full mattress enclosure that covers the entire mattress and usually zips shut.

One major consideration is that, for a mattress cover to be waterproof, it cannot be made of all natural materials. You can purchase an organic cover that protects and guards against liquids, but it will not be 100% waterproof.

Comfort

Waterproof mattress pads have a history of being noisy, hot, and uncomfortable. This stems from a time when vinyl and plastics were used to create the waterproof barrier. They made a crinkling sound when you moved, were not breathable, were often hot, stiff, and unpleasant to sleep on. They were used only when necessary, or in places like hospitals, to combat incontinence. This is no longer the case! Many brands have now developed both waterproof membranes, breathable membranes, soft cotton tops, and quiet fabrics.

Chemicals

Originally, most mattress pads contained chemicals and fire retardants that are now considered harmful to your health. Polyvinyl chloride and phthalates, fire retardants such as polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs), and chlorinated tris (TDCPP) are recognized as unhealthy and not used in most mattress protectors any longer.

Check with the manufacturer to understand what chemicals are used in creating the waterproof component of the mattress protector you are considering, especially if you have allergies or chemical sensitivities.

Styles

Because no one sees the protector, they only come in solid white: no colors or designs. They do, however, come in a variety of fabrics and fits. You can get cotton, a cotton blend, bamboo, or polyester. The cover can be well padded or quite thin. It may form fit like a bottom sheet or cover the entire mattress.

Price

Waterproof mattress protectors come in a wide variety of prices. You can find one for as little as $10 or spend $100+. There is a good selection of mattress protectors between $30 and $50.

Warranty

In the five best covers profiled above, there is a range of warranties from 1 year to 15 years. Manufacturers can vary greatly in what they warranty, how long the warranty lasts, and how easy or difficult it is to return an item. Check by reading their policies and by reading the reviews.

Cleaning

It is easy to assume that all mattress covers are easy care and machine wash and dry, but in researching protectors, we found numerous ones that require special care or dry cleaning. Read through care instructions, so you have a clear idea of what is needed to maintain the mattress protector, and plan to wash it regularly.

Replacement

How often should you replace the mattress protector? The answer depends on how often you need to wash it and how well it holds up. The general recommendation is to replace it yearly, but if it is washed very frequently, like several times a week, you may need to replace it every 4 to 6 months. Also, for some brands, washing decreases the waterproof quality, so replacement is needed to keep the mattress well protected.


Summary

Having a protective cover is important for the longevity of your mattress and for your health.  A waterproof mattress cover can help by keeping liquids and various allergens locked out of the mattress. Consider things like what you want to spend, the warranty, any chemical sensitivities, and the style you like. Reviews and ratings are available online to help guide your decision.


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