THE GOOD: Featherbeds (also known as feather mattress toppers) are often effective at softening a firm mattress. They typically cost less and sleep hot less than the average mattress topper.
THE BAD: Regular fluffing / shaking is needed to maintain loft and comfort. Lumpiness / clumping is possible. Thickness and cushioning may be inadequate for some people. Feathers may poke through the cover, causing discomfort. Dry cleaning is often required.
THE TOPPER: Despite its name, a featherbed is not an actual bed or mattress but a mattress topper. The product is filled mostly or entirely with feathers from the wings and backs of geese and duck.
The ratings below show how featherbeds compare to the average topper as evaluated by consumers. For ratings on individual models, see the following section.
|Price||B+||Prices often range $65-$150. The average price is $82 which is significantly lower than that of the average mattress topper ($145).|
|Value||B-||Given their relatively low price and general effectiveness at softening a mattress, most owners say featherbeds are a solid value.|
|Durability / longevity||c+||Featherbeds have longevity / durability similar to other topper types. About 20% of owners report that some feathers escape the topper, especially when shaking / fluffing. The topper will lose at least some of its loft and softness over time.|
|Less pain||C+||Roughly 17% of owners with back pain report their featherbed helps to reduce it. However, feathers poking through the cover may cause discomfort and even pain.|
|Supportive||C-||The ability of featherbeds to improve mattress support is below that of memory foam and latex.|
|Conforming ability||D+||While a featherbed can soften a mattress, it performs below memory foam and latex in providing a cradling, cloud-like feel.|
|Motion isolation||d||Unlike memory foam toppers, featherbeds do not reduce your motion from reaching and disturbing your partner.|
|No lumpiness / clumping||D+||Lumpiness and clumping of the feathers is possible without regular shaking / fluffing.|
|Easy to move on||B||They tend to provide little resistance to changing positions and getting up off the bed.|
|No initial odor||c||While better than memory foam and latex, odor is still a problem for roughly 6% of owners.|
|No sleeping hot||B+||Bothersome heat retention is reported by no more than 3% of owners. Featherbeds tend to sleep warm in the winter and cool in the summer.|
|No noise||D+||The feathers or lining inside may make a soft crunching / crackling noise when compressed.|
|Sex friendly||B||Mostly suited for romance, aside from the occasional poking feather.|
|Easy to lift, handle, move||C+||Weight is usually 10-19 pounds (queen) which is about average for a mattress topper.|
|Proper fit / secure||c||Most featherbeds simply lie on top of a mattress without corner straps or elastic skirts to fasten them. If placed between the mattress and a fitted sheet, featherbeds often stay mostly in place.|
|Easy to maintain||D||Shaking / fluffing is needed to maintain loft and comfort – daily to monthly depending mainly on owner preference.|
|Appearance||c||Featherbeds are not smooth in appearance, and as a result they may cause a bed to appear somewhat lumpy and uneven.|
|Easy to clean||d||Dry cleaning is often recommended.|
The following table compares featherbeds that have at least 82% owner satisfaction based on 250 or more consumer experiences.
|Natural Baffle- channel Featherbed||Super Snooze||Luxurious Baffle Box||White Goose Feather & Down|
|Owner Satisfaction (sample)|
|89% (1095)||87% (3446)||86% (1285)||82% (203)
|Contains down (for added softness)|
|12 lbs||19 lbs||11 lbs||15 lbs|
|king||twin, full, queen, king, CA king||twin, full, queen, king||twin, queen|
|overstock .com||overstock .com||overstock .com||amazon|
|30 days||30 days||30 days||30 days|
* Heavier featherbeds tend to be thicker (and softer) than lighter ones. Sleepers will sink in and be surrounded more by a thicker topper.
Owners often compare sleeping on a featherbed to "sleeping on a cloud," and the words "cozy," "soft" and "fluffy" are often used to describe the topper. Those who say that the product makes no difference in comfort often described the product as too thin and that it flattens when lied upon. Those who say the product reduces comfort often say it causes pain due to feather poking or lumpiness.
Featherbed manufacturers often tout that they use baffled channels in their products. Baffling is designed to keep the feathers in place and therefore prevent clumping and the formation of peaks and valleys. Consumer experience data, however, shows that baffling has limited effectiveness in many cases, and that you should expect some feather clumping whether or not the topper is baffled.
Thread count is the number of threads per square inch of fabric. Consumer experience data shows little to no correlation between thread count and owner satisfaction. However, a high thread count may be somewhat more likely to prevent feathers from escaping.
The featherbed research is based on over 6,000 owner reviews gathered from credible sources, namely review sections on retailer web sites.
– A featherbed is often considered high maintenance. Regular shaking / fluffing is required to maintain loft / comfort.
– Featherbeds do not reduce motion transfer, unlike memory foam and latex toppers.
– Paying more for a featherbed does not often result in higher owner satisfaction.
– Featherbeds do not often trap heat or sleep hot. Less than four percent of owners report a heat-related problem.