Shopping for a mattress can seem like an overwhelming experience, with hundreds of different options to choose from. Soft, hard, gently firm, latex, memory foam, springs: it’s a minefield out there which can confuse the best of us! Retreating back to the ‘comfort’ of your lumpy mattress is not an option! So, let’s take it step by step. Two common terms that are used in mattresses are Pillow Top and Euro Top. Consumers are often confused by the differences and similarities between these two mattresses, but need not be. Basically, these terms refer to the construction and appearance of the mattress. Let’s unpack it a little further.
What are the similarities and differences between these two mattresses and, most importantly, which one is the best choice for you? When looking at whether one should choose a Euro Top mattress or a Pillow Top mattress, it is important to distinguish the differences between them, and what each mattress offers. Firstly, what are the similarities? The name for both refers to a mattress with an additional layer of foam sewn to the top of a mattress. Who wouldn’t want an extra layer of super comfy foam on the top of your mattress? Often, retailers and manufacturers use the terms “Pillow Top” and “Euro Top” interchangeably, but these two types of mattress have their differences – despite their similarities. The differences between a Pillow Top and a Euro Top are evident in their appearances, springs, sleep surface and firmness of the mattress. Let’s look at each of these in a little more detail.
In a Pillow Top mattress, the additional layer of foam is added to the top of the mattress. There will be a gap that separates the Pillow Top from the foundational comfort layer and it will appear as if there is an additional padding layer on top of the mattress, however it is actually stitched onto the top. You will immediately notice it in a bed shop due to the soft layer of goodness attached to the top of the mattress. Like its name suggests, it resembles a pillow stitched to the top of a mattress.
The Euro Top is slightly different. While it also has an additional layer of foam, instead of being stitched to the top foundational comfort layer, the sleep surface is stitched flush with each side of the mattress. So, while the foam is there, it is sewn to the edges of the mattress, giving the bed a more modern appearance. Therefore, the first difference you will have to think about when choosing between the two, is the look of the bed.
1. The Bed Springs
Now, here is where it gets a little more complicated. There are two conventional spring systems in the South African market: the Bonnell Spring and the Pocket spring. A Bonnell Spring System is a traditional innerspring system which has a coil in an hourglass shape that is connected to a mesh which creates a durable and supportive mattress. This is the more traditional spring and offers even support across the entire bed. On the other hand, Pocket Spring Systems comprise of individually pocketed springs that allow for independent movement which in turn, allows for added contour which alleviates pressure on the hips and shoulders.
As the pillow top layer does not run to the edge of a mattress, a Pillow Top mattress is better suited to a Bonnell spring system. The Euro Top is a little more versatile, and is suited to both spring systems.
So, the choice here will come down to the type of support that you are looking for. If you are after even support throughout, then a Bonnell spring system will suit you, which can be found in both a Pillow Top and Euro Top mattress. However, if you are looking for a mattress that allows for more independent movement, then you might do better with a Pocket spring system, which you can find in a Euro Top mattress.
2. The Sleep Surface
While the springs support the way you sleep, the comfort layer on your mattress is critical to getting the desired comfort whilst you sleep. There are four different sleep surfaces that are commonly used in South African mattresses: Reconstituted foam, virgin foam, memory foam and latex. There are varying qualities of each foam that manufacturers use, so it is important to try to establish the density of the foam that is used and to make sure that you buy your mattress from a trustworthy and reputable supplier. The general rule for foam is that the higher the density, the higher the quality.
3. Mattress Firmness
While we will all admit that springs and surfaces are important, most people make a decision about their bed based on the firmness that different options offer. There is nothing worse than sleeping on a bed that is too hard or too soft and many nights of good sleep have been spoiled by this! There are important differences in the Pillow Top and Euro Top when it comes to the firmness of the mattress. Because of the construction of the Pillow Top, it is slightly softer than the Euro Top. The softer feel makes the Pillow Top more suitable for someone who weighs up to 90kg. This soft feel allows the sleep surface to contour to the body, which alleviates stress to the hips and shoulders which will reduce back and shoulder ache. The firmer feel of the Euro Top is better suited to people who weigh up to 110kg.
The Big Decision
Once you have weighed up all the options, considered the firmness, springs, sleep surface and appearance, the time for a decision will be upon you! There are a number of factors that you should consider when making the final decision about whether you should buy a Pillow Top mattress or a Euro Top mattress, and which one is the most suitable for you. Hopefully, this article has given you an idea of some of the key differences and answered some of the questions you may ask when making the right choice.
Make sure that you get sound advice by talking to a sleep expert from a reputable retailer like Fit For Bed. We have found two good examples of each product brought to you by the esteemed Harris Hotel. Equally priced, the Harris Hotel Euro Top and the Harris Hotel Pillow Top offer a good comparison. Generally speaking, weight is the most important factor when settling on a bed. Some mattresses are designed for lighter people, and others are better suited for heavier set people. However, the individual feel of a mattress is also important, so consider all of the options before making your final decision.
If you’d like to learn more about the best mattresses and which might be the ideal one for you, contact us today and one of our mattress experts will be in touch!