Mattress Covers

Archived Q&A and Reviews

Soft mattress cover for cosleeping family

March 2007

We are looking for a waterproof/resistant mattress pad that isn't too ''plasticky.'' The ones I've seen are made of crackly plastic, which would probably wake the baby (and me too). We do need something besides a plain cotton cover to protect the mattress from drool, spit-up, etc. Ideas, or specific brands you like? zzzzz

they have exactly what you are looking for (often called puddle pads) at tiny birds organics (a company i happen to love supporting): i'm sure they sell them elsewhere, too. you can buy a couple to fit over a larger mattress. happy sleeping! anon

We put a flannelized rubber (NOT plastic) mat between the matress and sheet. It's a bit stiffer than the mattress, but not too crinkly. R.K.

I've bought one of these for every member of our family (parents + 3 kids), plus one for our futon, and an extra one in each size. Go to Bed Bath & Beyond--they have fabric waterproof mattress covers, that do not make any sound or feel plastic-y. They truly protect the mattress, but aren't uncomfortable in any way. I suggest you buy an extra, in case there's a midnight accident--you'll have a replacement ready. heidi

BEd bath and beyond has one made from cotton with a polyurethane (waterproof) layer. We use it on our bed (we co-sleep too), and there is no crinkly sounds at all. Andi

we've been pretty successful (2 kids worth) with a crib sized rubber liner (flannel on both sides), with two thin worn out towels over it to make it feel less sweaty. it's a little stiff, but not noisy, and there's a slight ridge at the edge of the towels. we slightly overlap the towels so the edge is smoother. we put it in our 2yo daughter's ''spot'' in the bed, on top of the cotton quilted mattress pad, and put the sheet over it. underneath the quilted mattress pad (directly on the mattress) we have 2 more crib liners overlapped slightly, to protect against those times she has scooted to the side and leaked past the edge of the first line of defense (this happened last week...).

when she was newborn and barfy, we put her on a receiving blanket folded in half with one of the small rubber/flannel ''lap pads'' tucked inside under her bottom. the blanket was enough for spitup, and the rubber blocked the blowouts. we had another set (and clothes/diapers) ready to go on the nightstand, which helped us avoid getting up or turning on lights. and we could slide her around on the pad to reposition her up/down/sideways in the bed without disturbing her when she was asleep. happy cosleeping! 5 year with kids in bed!

You could use a wool puddle pad. We have one on our baby's crib (for when he's actually in there). I ordered mine online, but they have them at Earthsake and I recently saw them at Baby World on Telegraph. For our bed, though, I just put a bath towel down over our regular mattress pad, under the sheet, for a little extra protection for little leaks. Annie

Mattress Covers for Bedwetting

March 2006

Anyone know where to get good plastic mattress covers? The ones at Anne's Linens get ripped up after short while. ANy advice on how to stop night time wetting? I think it would stop if kid stopped using pull-ups--but without a cover, i'm unwilling to try this. I've noticed it's worse when kid eats sugar in the evening. thanks.

Try this mattress pad... If you have trouble clicking on the link, go to and search for mattress pad - it's the first one pictured. -Over the sheets, not under for easy cleanup.

I got some pads at Target, they are fuzzy and thick and absorbant on top, plastic on the bottom. They were pretty cheap, maybe $6.00. They are 3/4 the length of the mattress and just as wide. I put them on top of the mattress cover and under the sheet and they work perfectly. You could probably get them else where as well. Sleep Train has waterproof mattress covers that are guarenteed for 10 years or maybe even more. They are a more expensive but would also do the trick. Natalie

I recently got a new mattress at Mancini's (I went to the one on Ashby, but there are several), and as part of the deal I got them to throw in a mattress cover that is absolutely amazing. My daughter has wet my bed a couple of times since then, and even though the blankets and sheets were soaked, the mattress was as dry as a bone. Plus, it's flexible, so I don't have the feeling of sleeping on crinkly plastic or anything. Unfortunately, I don't recall the name offhand, but they'll know at Mancini's - they have a little display on their counter with a mason jar of liquid covered with this material - you can shake the jar upside-down as much as you want, but not a drop comes through. The downside? They have it marked at a ridiculously high price - like, $89 for full size or something like that. I know they price their mattresses for bargaining - maybe they do the same with these. We've only had ours for two months, so I can't speak to long- term use, but it sure seems like it's going to hold up. Wet kid, dry mattress

Non-toxic mattress protector

Feb 2004

I've been looking for a mattress protector for my toddler, but, first of all, I'm confused about the relative dangers of rubber, PVC, and poyurethane liners. My impression is that ''outgassing'' from polyurethane is only a problem with the foam and so a thin waterproof layer on a mattress pad may not be unsafe; does anyone know anything about this or the other materials, which seem to be my only choices? Second, I find the felted rubber pads to be hot, even under a cotton mattress pad. Are they all going to present this problem? I'd appreciate any suggestions for a good, safe, comfortable mattress protector. I've heard the wool ones don't work very well, and they're expensive besides, but if you've used one with success, which kind did you use? Thanks. Ellen

We've had 3 1/2 years of excellent luck with a wool ''puddle pad'' mattress protector we bought from babyworks:

It was expensive, but it has kept our very expensive cotton crib futon pristine through various leaks/spills so it was money well spent. I just ordered a second one for the new baby.

Tips for success: remove it from the mattress to air dry as soon as possible after it gets wet (sometimes we didn't notice the diaper leaked until the next morning though and it still worked); be very careful to follow washing instructions to the letter. - Charis

Wool Mattress pad for Infants


My eight-month-old son has slept on a fuzzy cotton blanket since the day he was born--and has a hard time sleeping without it. But he is outgrowing it rapidly. I have been thinking about replacing it with a wool mattress pad, but am concerned about a report I heard about from Australia that links the use of lambskins with a higher incidence of SIDS.

I have found a company that makes crib mattress pads that are shorn lambswool knitted into a poly backing, not the skin itself. They say these are safer and easier to clean, and used in some hospitals for premies ( That's reassuring, but I'd still like to know more. Does anyone have experience with these kinds of mattress pads? Does anyone know about the Australian study? Thank you. Carolyn

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