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If you’re a hot sleeper or menopause night sweats keep you up at night, the best cooling gel mattress toppers can chill you out. Specifically engineered to regulate your body’s temperature, they’re a must have with the approaching warming weather. They can also make your bed feel brand new.
Mattress toppers are a great way to improve the feel of an older mattress. If you have back pain you’ve probably looked into one made with memory foam. While those are great, toppers infused with gel can be even better.
Along with being soft and supportive, the gel infusion causes your body to reduce its heat. This is necessary to enter REM, the deepest level of sleep. Even if menopause isn’t your concern, sleeping too hot is a universal issue. It can leave you sweaty and negatively impact your mood, cognition, and overall performance.
If you like to wake up fresh and alert — I certainly do — I highly recommend giving a cooling gel mattress topper a try. If you think about it, you have nothing to lose, except some seriously glorious shuteye.
Do gel mattress toppers keep you cool?
If you’re a hot sleeper or menopausal, you’ll be glad to know that gel mattress toppers are great at keeping you cool at night. “Unlike a memory foam topper, which can trap heat, gel-based mattress toppers are designed with a cooling feature dispersed throughout the [surface],” says Nancy H. Rothstein, MBA, The Sleep Ambassador. “This may be helpful for those who tend to get overheated.”
Temperature hugely impacts how well we sleep. In fact, according to a study in Science Advances, if our sleep environment is too warm, our thermoregulation gets thrown off.
Thermo-what? Thermoregulation! It’s a fancy word for our internal body temperature, and it needs to decrease for sleep to occur. If a bedroom’s sweltering, or your hormones are triggering hot flashes, you’re going to have a harder time sleeping.
What’s neat about the best cooling gel mattress toppers is how they impact your thermoregulation. Their gel is comprised of tiny liquid beads that create micro-airways in the foam. This allows heat to escape, instead of staying trapped under the covers with you.
Some gel mattress toppers, like the GhostBed Memory Foam Topper, have several gel layers, and are shaped in a way where you can see the air channels. They also come with tops made of lightweight fabric that fights moisture. Pair one with one of the coolest comforters and sheets for hot sleepers, and you have a recipe for perfectly chilled slumber.
What are the best cooling gel mattress toppers?
- Best Overall cooling gel mattress topper : GhostBed Memory Foam Topper
- Best cooling gel mattress topper with cover : Sleep Innovations Dual Layer Gel Memory Foam Topper
- Best cooling gel mattress topper for hot sleepers : Lucid Gel and Aloe Infused Memory Foam Topper
- Best phase-changing cooling gel mattress topper : ViscoSoft Active Cooling Memory Foam Topper
- Best cooling gel memory foam topper for menopause : Allswell Copper Gel Memory Foam Topper
- Best Cooling gel memory foam mattress topper for side sleepers : PlushBeds Cooling Gel Memory Topper
- Best cooling gel mattress topper for stomach sleepers : SealyChill Memory Foam Mattress Topper
- Best Serta cooling gel mattress topper : Serta Cooling Mattress Topper
- Best motion canceling cooling gel mattress topper : ViscoSoft Memory Foam Mattress Topper
- Best cooling gel mattress topper for back sleepers : Sleepyhead Gel Mattress Topper
Is gel cooler than memory foam?
Memory foam toppers are great for those with back pain. They’re conforming, which means that they adapt to your unique body position to relieve pressure from your mattress below. However, they also retain heat. In comparison, toppers with gel are made to reduce it. They’re also supportive.
“[A] feature of a gel-based mattress topper is that it adapts to your movement, thereby offering pressure point relief by distributing your body weight,” explains Rothstein. “Their elasticity allows them to maintain their original shape, hopefully extending [their] longevity.”
Some gel toppers, like the ViscoSoft Active Cooling Memory Foam Topper, have copper, which is naturally heat and moisture deterrent. The best cooling gel mattress toppers, like this one, have phase-changing gel. It starts off solid but liquifies when things get hot. This helps your body maintain the lower temperature it needs to stay asleep.
Other toppers, like the Subrtex Organic Gel-Infused Mattress Topper, use therma gel, a material that makes them feel frostier on contact. They may also include ventilation holes, like Subrtex utilizes, to release the heat the topper absorbs.
Are cooling mattress toppers worth it?
A cooling mattress topper is worth adding to your bed if night sweats disrupt your zzzs. Unfortunately, menopause and sleep problems go hand in hand, according to the National Institute of Aging. Finding the right cooling gel mattress topper for you can minimize discomfort.
Even if you’re simply a hot sleeper, buying this bedding accessory can boost the quality of your rest. In 2018, the National Library of Medicine published a study showing that those who slept on thicker toppers with buoyancy had a quicker decrease in body temperature. Naturally, they fell asleep faster.
What makes the best cooling gel mattress toppers ideal for sweaty snoozers and menopausal ladies is that the gel is infused into memory foam. This means you get all the joint support that memory foam toppers offer, plus the cooling properties from the gel.
Along with finding the gel mattress topper, creating a restorative environment can aid your quest for quality sleep. “Your bedroom should be cool, dark, quiet, and peaceful,” says Rothstein. “[Some] may say that your bedroom temperature should be 65 to 68 degrees, but what is most comfortable for you? If you have a bed partner, discuss this and come up with the best solution that meets both of your needs.”
Rothstein also suggests turning off electronics an hour before bed, and engaging in relaxing activities like reading or chatting with your family instead. She also recommends avoiding the clock. “Another sleep disrupter is focusing on the time. Don’t look at the clock if you’re having trouble falling asleep. Doing so activates your brain just when it needs to slow down. As you count how much sleep you’re not going to get, or start focusing on worries and your to-do list, you’re challenging your natural tendency to fall asleep.”
Looking for even more options? Check out our other mattress topper recommendations:
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Best Cooling Gel Mattress Toppers
Why we like it:
- Award winning
- Zoned cushioning
- Three inches of cooling gel
Whether night sweats plague you or you’re just located in a hot climate, the GhostBed Memory Foam Topper has all the cooling capabilities you need. It’s frequently listed as one of the best cooling gel mattress toppers, and it is the recipient of several awards. Along with having multiple layers of gel, it has an egg-crate design. That may sound weird, but the varying height and shapes of the topper allows it to lift, cradle and cushion so well, it’s like laying on a creampuff. Targeted zones provide extra support to your neck and legs, and also allow air to flow, keeping your body a comfortable temperature. The topper also features elastic bands to protect against sliding, and it isn’t made with any toxic chemicals. As soon as you fall on top of it you’ll sleep like the dead.
Promising review: “This topper is fantastic! I have had shoulder and hip pain for years, [but now] the pain is gone! It is so comfortable. I toss and turn less at night. I was afraid memory foam would make it harder to turn over, but it doesn’t. The cover is also very nice!”
Why we like it:
- Quilted cover top
- More than 18,000 five-star Amazon reviews
- Hight density
If you’ve had bad experiences with memory foam or are not 100 percent sold on adding a topper, let this one change your mind. Sleep Innovations Dual Layer Gel Memory Foam Topper is four inches thick, making it a great option if you or your partner are on the heavier side. Having a medium feel, the foam’s gel reduces heat while elevating pressure points. What’s really fantastic, however, is the quilted top. It’s so plush and cushy, you won’t even notice the topper beneath. It’s machine washable, hypoallergenic, and will make you a total believer in how life changing this bedding enhancer can be. More than 20,000 Amazon customers love it, and 18,000 plus give it five-stars!
Promising review: “So far this has been miraculously helpful. Slept like a baby despite my horrible back issues…The gel relieves pressure points, but quickly returns to its original shape as you move, unlike [plain] memory foam. With the gel layer alone, this is extremely relieving to my shoulders, hips and knees, and I’ve been sleeping well on it.”
Why we like it:
- 5,660 five-star rating on Wayfair
- Fresh smell
Some mattress toppers have a cool surface, while others help sleepers chill out by lowering their body temp. This gel topper from Lucid is the latter, and you’ll adore how it makes you feel. Once you lay down, the cooling gel gets to work, reducing your heat and dispersing it. This means you won’t wake at midnight with a pool of sweat around your lower back. There are four inches of cushioning, and aloe has been infused into the foam to keep it smelling fresh night after night. This has a plushier feel, so if your mattress is on the harder side, this will soften things up.
Promising review: “Wow! This thing is thick and dense, perfect for relieving pressure on my hips and joints. The only problem is that now I never want to get out of bed (and neither does my cat)!”
Why we like it:
- Includes copper gel
- Has grips and bed straps
- 5-year warranty
Even if you’re sleeping on one of the best split king adjustable beds that’s ever been made, you’ll be uncomfortable if you’re hot. The ViscoSoft Active Cooling Memory Foam Topper has copper gel to disperse heat. It also has a phase-changing gel, which liquifies as soon as a hot flash comes on. I like thinking of it as having an ice pack instantly appearing beneath my back — but far more comfortable. The two gels work in tandem, so you remain cool, and the mesh cover allows even more airflow. Backed by ViscoSoft’s 5-year warranty, you’ll also be glad to know the pad has grips on the bottom, as well as anti-slip straps. It’s also available in white (shown above) and black.
Promising review: “I don’t know all the science behind it, but I love how this new topper sleeps so much cooler than our old foam one. Also, for someone like me who turns a lot, the straps and anti-slip mesh underneath really help keep it in place. We’ve only had it for a little while, but so far it’s been great.”
Why we like it:
- Open-cell design
When menopause is your bedfellow, you need a mattress topper that stops overheating. This topper from Allswell has copper gel throughout the foam, which naturally removes moisture and keeps heat low. Its open-cell design allows hot air to escape the bed, keeping it — and you! — cool. The topper is ultra-thick, propping up your most tender parts, for full support all night long. Even the lumpiest mattress will feel brand new when topped with this guy. It doesn’t come with straps, but it is antibacterial, and you can keep it snug on your bed with cooling sheets for summer. Tip: Size up on the sheets, so they comfortably fit around the bed with the topper.
Promising review: “I have horrible sweaty hot flashes around the clock, and toss and turn all night. Since getting this my husband said he hasn’t felt me jump around at all! The bed is definitely cooler than without it, and it really does seem to wick moisture away, which allows me to sleep so much better!”
Why we like it:
- Supports joints
- Available in different densities
Upgrade you mattress at a fraction of the price. The Cooling Gel Memory Foam Topper provides exceptional pressure relief for side sleepers. If you need just a little cushion, go for the two-inch profile. Need a little more? Pick the three-inch. Whichever you choose, your hips and shoulders will feel nurtured. Gel infused foam keeps you cool, even if you like sleeping with a lot of blankets like I do. And no matter if you start the night on your side to wake up on your belly or back, the topper will retain its shape. You have the option of adding an organic cotton cover to it, and since this is CertiPUR-US and GreenGuard Gold certified, you won’t have to deal with that chemical smell some toppers unroll with.
Promising review: “I very much like my cooling gel foam topper. I was having an issue sleeping on my side, and this has helped a great deal.“
Why we like it:
- Three layers of foam
- Protective, bacteria-fighting cover
- Gel-swirl pattern
When you literally like sleeping like a baby, a medium feel topper is best. The SealyChill Memory Mattress Topper is soft enough to pillow your hips and ribs, while still maintaining its integral structure. It adapts to your movements, so your neck has support as you adjust in the middle of the night. The foam’s gel is infused in a swirl pattern, targeting multiple zones to keep the entire body cool. The topper includes an anti-microbial cover to deter mold and other allergens. It’s breathable and can be tossed in the washer come laundry day. You will have to deal with the trademark foam topper smell, but it should be gone in 24 hours.
Promising review: “I’ve been having severe back, neck, hip, and shoulder pain for the past year or so due to my [mattress]…This topper literally gives so much support that I didn’t have to use a pillow to [prop up] my neck. I woke up with minimal pain (Rome wasn’t built in a day), and for the first time in a long time I’m excited to fall into bed [at night]!”
Why we like it:
- Cool-to-touch gel
- Improved airflow
Maybe you have one of the best mattresses for hot flashes and menopause, but just want things a smidge colder. This Serta Cooling Mattress Topper is the perfect thing. It has open-cell memory foam infused with therma gel. That means it has better ventilation capabilities, and makes you feel instantly cooler the moment you enter bed. The pad gently supports pressure points, reducing aches and pains. It has a two-inch profile, making it ideal if you’re a lighter weight, have a mattress that’s still in decent shape, or just need a little extra cushion.
Promising review: “Serta’s Cooling Memory Foam Mattress Topper is the perfect thickness. I have a very thin queen mattress, and this was the perfect addition to it. The two-inch therma gel not only helps my back but also my night sweats! It’s a must for anyone looking to upgrade his or her bed.”
Why we like it:
- Great for couples
- Mattress size variety
- Soft but supportive
Blessed with a partner that tosses and turns? The ViscoSoft Memory Foam Mattress Topper should help. The durable topper is squishy enough that you won’t feel a muscle moving from the hubs. Plus, it’s really comfortable. The foam is designed to help align your spine, reduce imbalances, and ease pain. Gel in the foam keeps your bed from retaining heat, and there’s a ventilated core to promote airflow and lower your temperature. The topper includes a mesh cover with straps, and it’s three-inches thick. You’ll wake pain free, and we bet that your bedmate’s tossing will be a thing of the past. Sizes start at twin and go up to a California king.
Promising review: “I’m loving it — it feels like luxury. You don’t feel yourself sinking into it when you roll over, and aren’t trying to climb out of a deep hole either… No aches or pains in my lower back or anywhere [so far].”
Why we like it:
- Ha stability grips on
- Cooling material throughout surface
- No unraveling wait time
A firmer mattress can feel better to us back sleepers, but can also cause aches in the long run. Adding some extra-padding can provide relief to shoulder bones and hips, while supporting hips. This gel topper from Sleepyhead gives just enough cushion for bonier areas, making it a solid choice for those of a lighter weight but who don’t like the doughy feel some memory foam has. Cooling gel is infused throughout the topper, so you’ll remain comfortable from your head to toes as the hours pass. There’s no deflation time, which means you can unroll from the box, and get your sleep on right away. If you’re not a fan of non-slip bands, you’ll be happy to know that the pad comes with tiny grips to prevent slipping.
Promising review: “I was having pain in my hip and a friend suggested I buy a mattress topper. She cautioned me that I should expect to have a hot nights sleep. After researching, I bought the sleepyhead gel king topper. It’s heavenly, cool, and solved my hip pain.”
Why we like it:
- Multiple thickness options
- Adds slight bounce to mattress
- Includes ventilation holes
Even if you keep your room cold, a bed can get hot with sheets and blankets. Along with having chilling gel, this Subrtex foam mattress topper has a design to increase ventilation. Holes strategically placed throughout the surface create airflow and prevent heat from becoming trapped. The foam bends and lifts with your natural curves, and adds a layer of softness. Available in multiple densities, you’re sure to find the right one to sleep undisturbed and cool as a cucumber.
Promising review: “The first night I added this mattress topper to my bed I was actually out of town and forgot to mention it to my husband. He texted me asking why the bed felt so different and really comfortable. He loved it. I couldn’t wait to [get home] and try it out. I can now say having this topper has fundamentally changed the way I sleep. I’m more rested, wake in less pain, and sleep [soundly].”
Why we like it:
- Good for all sleep styles
- Adaptive material
Okay, so this technically doesn’t contain gel. However, it’s cool-to-touch cover does keep your sleep area colder. Plus, people love Tempur-Pedic, and you probably will too. This foam mattress topper modifies itself to support your body temperature, weight, and sleep position. You can roll to your left or right and still have your neck and back cradled throughout the transition. The soft knit removable casing is made with breathable material, and the topper is incredibly durable, retaining its shape even if you literally dive into bed night after night. Whether this will be your first Tempur experience or you’re a long time fan, this is a real sleeper hit.
Promising review: “I had previously been using a brand name three-inch cooling gel mattress topper, which was decent but didn’t [compare] to this. The Tempur-Pedic topper is absolutely fabulous. I do not notice any heat retention during the night. As someone with fibromyalgia, I need support but also lots of pressure point relief. This topper provides both!”
Why we like it:
- 58,561 5-star Amazon reviews!
- CertiPUR US certified
This budget-friendly gel memory foam topper is a great way to alleviate back pain without breaking your wallet. A favorite of hot sleepers and those with morning aches, the topper has almost 60,000 five-star ratings on Amazon. The cloud-like foam evenly distributes pressure from your weight, and gel throughout the surface regulates the climate under the sheets. The body conforming topper helps reduce the pressure of your mattress springs, giving you extra time before you have to splurge on a new bed. CertiPUR US certified, it can take up to 24 hours to expand, but some customers report being able to enjoy within five hours. It’s available in two- and three-inch profiles, and ships free.
Promising review: “The topper expanded to full size in about four hours, and [now] we’ve slept much better than we ever have on the bed. No aches or pains getting up, and no motion transfer during the night. I didn’t notice any smell, even upon first opening the packaging. This was a very affordable solution to my overly firm mattress problem, and I would highly recommend to anyone.”
Why we like it:
- Cooling cover
- Made in the U.S.
If you’ve always dreamed about sleeping on a cloud, this may be your chance. Novaform makes heavenly bedding, and the EVENcor GelPlus Memory Foam Mattress Topper is no exception. It engulfs you in softness as soon as you lay down. The responsive foam gently supports joints, making it easy to forget the pains of the day. The gel pulls excess heat from your body, so you snooze more soundly, no sweat in sight. It’s unaffected by the temperature of your room, so whether it’s 68 degrees or 98, the surface remains cold. Having a three-inch profile, the topper is great for those who need a little extra support. The cover is stretchy, lightweight, and made with a super soft cooling fiber to keep the bed crisp.
Promising review: “Love this! I had to get this after visiting my in-laws [who had one on their guest room]. I got such a good night of sleep that I told my mother-in-law how much I loved it. She ended up purchasing one for us as a surprise. My bed is so comfortable now, and I sleep so much better.“
Why we like it:
- Enhanced support
- Gel and latex combo
You may already know that adding latex to your sleeping arrangement can keep you cooler, and this Broyhill foam topper has it. However, what makes this topper really special is its tri-zone sculpted design. The labyrinth-like coils and passages transfer heat away from the bed, leaving your sleeping area comfortably chill. The unique shape also offers premium support to your spine and joints, lifting and conforming where needed. There’s also GelLux technology infused throughout to maintain your frostiness. This topper is four-inches thick, which means it won’t dip or lose shape, even if you’re on the heavier side.
Promising review: “I have always used toppers on my bed, but they didn’t have cooling gel. [The ones I tried] caused me to wake up sweating. The gel in this one takes away the heat. Now I’m sleeping a lot better.”
Why we like it:
- Five-year warranty
- Targets micro-climate
- Three layers of cooling gel
You’ll wake limber as Gumby when you sleep with Molekule’s Triple Zone Pro Topper. It has multiple layers of gel to hyper target spots on the body that receive the most impact from the mattress below. Don’t believe me? Check out the body scan photos on Molekule’s website to see heat and pressure reduce in sleepers using the topper. An antibacterial honeycombed breathable cover is cool on contact, and reduces the heat between you and the sheets. If you have chronic back pain, menopause, or anything that keeps you up at night, this will help you enter the sleep zone.
Promising review: “This topper is really comfy. I bought it for back pain and it has alleviated [it]. It is soft, yet firm. I now have every pet in bed in with me — they love it too! I would highly recommend!”
Why we like it:
- Features natural ingredients
- Grips on bottom
- Breathable cover
Do you run your air condition throughout the night to keep yourself from sweating? The Ultra Cool Gel Memory Foam Topper may lower your electric bill. Zinus uses natural ingredients like bamboo, charcoal, and tencel to keep their toppers fresh, germ-free, and better equipped to reduce heat. The ultra cool gel of this one makes for a softer sleeping experience, nesting your joints without pulling your entire body down. Green tea extract nixes odor, so it feels like you’re slipping into a new bed each night. If you need substantial support, a profile of three-inches can be selected. However, there’s also a two-inch profile for those who want something less dense.
Promising review: “I absolutely love this Zinus Ultra Cool Gel Memory Foam Mattress Topper. It is so comfortable. I recommend this for people that get hot when they sleep, because I usually do, and it causes me to wake up…This keeps me cool, [and] feels like it hugs your body. It makes it really hard to get out of bed now, because it is so soft and comfortable.”