You may well have spent quite a bit of time and money choosing the right bed, mattress and bedding for your child. A good mattress protector will make sure their bed stays clean, comfortable and avoids a build-up of bacteria.


Whether your baby is bringing up some of their milk feeds, dribbling due to teething or you’re cleaning up the results of yet another explosive nappy, you won’t be a stranger to changing their sheets on what can feel like a daily basis. Then as your little one gets older, there are the perils of bedwetting, tummy bugs and spilled drinks, all things which can leave even the most robust mattress looking worse for wear.

We’ve searched the market to find the most comfortable, practical and effective mattress protectors, tried and tested by parents just like you. Looking for a mattress for yourself? We've tested out the best mattresses on the market to help you get a better nights sleep.

Best mattress protectors at a glance

  • Best mattress protector for silent sleeping: Vesta Baby Premium Cot Bed Mattress Protector, £20.99
  • Best mattress protector for absorbing leaks: Snüz Snüzkot Miracle Waterproof Mattress Protector, £28.95
  • Best sustainable mattress protector: Naturalmat Organic Waterproof Mattress Protector, from £40
  • Best mattress protector for sensitive skin: Clevamama Tencel Waterproof Mattress Protector, from £15.99
  • Best budget mattress protector: Ikea LENAST Mattress Protector, £10.20
  • Best flat mattress protector: The Little Green Sheep Organic Crib Mattress Protector, £15.95
  • Best mattress protector for comfort: John Lewis Specialist Synthetic Waterproof Terry Towelling Mattress Protector, from £15
  • Best mattress protector for allergies: Mamas & Papas Anti-Allergy Mattress Protector Cotbed, £19
  • Best mattress protector for keeping child cool: BreathableBaby 3-in-1 Fitted Mattress Protector Pad, £19.99
  • Best mattress protector for washing well: Silentnight Quilted Waterproof Cotbed Mattress Protector, £12

What to look for when choosing a mattress protector

Comfort – When you’re shopping for a mattress protector, look at the materials it is made from. Ideally, you want something which is soft and comfortable, just like the rest of their bedding. Natural materials like cotton and bamboo can help keep your baby cool while absorbing any moisture.

Waterproof – Some mattress covers are little more than an extra layer of bedding, while others have a waterproof layer which will stop any liquid seeping through to the mattress underneath. Avoid any that feel like a plastic sheet or make a rustling or crinkling sound when your tot moves about as they can stop them getting a good night’s sleep.

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Dust – Mattress protectors can also act as a barrier for dust mites – ideal if your little one suffers from allergies which are aggravated by these little critters.

Fit – As mattresses come in a range of sizes you’ll need to ensure the protector you buy is the correct fit. Don’t forget to check the mattress depth, especially if it’s particularly thick. Some covers come with elasticated edges or straps to keep them firmly in place even if your little one is a wriggly sleeper. There are also covers which can be used on their own without an additional sheet on top.

Ease of washing – One of the most important things to check before buying is whether the cover is machine washable and can be safely put into the tumble dryer. You won’t want to be putting a damp cover on when it comes to bedtime so if it doesn’t dry quickly, make sure you have a spare.

Here is our pick of the best mattress covers for babies, toddlers and young children:

1. Vesta Baby Premium Cot Bed Mattress Protector, £20.99

– Best for silent sleeping

Vesta Baby Bamboo Mattress Protector

Size: 70cm x 140cm or 60cm x 120cm | Materials: Rayon made from bamboo | Machine washable: Yes (warm) | Tumble dryer safe: Yes (low)

Made from unbleached bamboo with a non-toxic TPU (more sustainable than PVC) waterproof backing, this soft cot bed mattress cover is eco-friendly and hypoallergenic. But it has more going for it than just its green credentials, the material is extremely absorbent and doesn’t make an annoying crinkly sound when your little one wriggles around – making it ideal for a peaceful night’s sleep.

We love the cute teddy bear jacquard design and the extra-long 22cm skirt which makes it really versatile, even if your cot bed mattress is slightly thicker or bigger than standard. This also helps the cover stay firmly on the bed so it doesn’t spring off at the corners if you have an energetic sleeper.

Another pro is that the Vesta Baby cover is machine washable and can be thrown into the tumble dryer, ready to go back onto your little one’s cot bed that night.

Pros: Absorbent, no noise, eco-friendly, hypoallergenic, cute teddy bear design, extra long skirt for deep mattresses, easy to wash
Cons: Not many sizes available

Available from: Amazon

2. Snüz Snüzkot Miracle Waterproof Mattress Protector, £28.95

– Best for absorbing leaks

Snuz Snuzkot waterproof mattress protector

Size: 118cm x 68cm | Materials: Polyurethane and cotton | Machine washable: Yes (at 60°C) | Tumble dryer safe: Yes

A great mattress protector does more than just add another layer to your little one’s bedding, it absorbs any liquid so it doesn’t seep through to the mattress beneath. This is something the Snüz Snüzkot Miracle Waterproof Mattress Protector does really effectively by combining soft cotton layers, which soak up any nappy leaks or accidents, with a 100% waterproof membrane.

As well as protecting your baby’s cot mattress, the chemical-free cover acts as an impenetrable barrier to dust mites, making it a good choice if your child has allergies. This mattress cover is designed to fit the Snüzkot but the range also includes a standard cot size option.

One major plus point is that you can throw it into the washing machine and put it on a 60°C cycle to kill off any bacteria and germs without damaging the cover. It is also suitable for tumble drying - a big plus if you don’t want to buy a spare or risk a night without it. MFM Editor Gemma uses this cover with her 3-year-old son and says, "This really impressed me: although it looks like it won't hold much liquid it really does, but it also washes well and comes out clean ready for the next use. We've had ours for over 2 years and it's still going strong despite numerous accidents along the way."

Pros: Very absorbent, 100% waterproof membrane, barrier to dust mites, easy to clean
Cons: Quite expensive, only suitable for cots/cotbeds

Available from: Snüz, John Lewis and Natural Baby Shower

3. Naturalmat Organic Waterproof Mattress Protector, from £40

– Best for sustainability

Naturalmat Organic waterproof mattress protector

Size: 38cm x 89cm (crib), 60cm x 120cm (cot), 70cm x 140cm (cot bed), other sizes to suit different brands are also available | Materials: 85% organic cotton and 15% polyurethane | Machine washable: Yes (delicate cycle) | Tumble dryer safe: Yes

This Naturalmat mattress protector is soft to the touch with 2 layers – one made from organic brushed cotton and the other made from breathable polyurethane, which creates a protective waterproof barrier.

If sustainability and natural materials are important to you, this mattress cover is for you. The materials used are both Soil Association and Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) certified and Naturalmat won the Queen’s Award for Sustainable Development 2020 for using natural fibres which either biodegrade or can be reused when you’ve finished with them.

Our favourite feature is the elastic straps which come with the cot and cot bed version of the cover. These hold it firmly in place and allow the sides of the mattress to breathe. There’s also no annoying crinkle sound from the waterproof layer – it is as soft and silent as a normal cotton sheet.

You can throw it in both the washing machine and tumble dryer when it gets dirty but, watch out, as although the instructions say you can wash it at up to 95°C, they also warn that shrinkage can occur if you don’t use the delicate cycle.

Pros: Sustainable, waterproof, elastic straps to keep protector on, no noise, easy to wash
Cons: Expensive

Available from: Amazon, Naturalmat and Huggle

4. Clevamama Tencel® Waterproof Mattress Protector, from £15.99

– Best for sensitive skin

ClevaMama tencel fitted cot bed mattress protector

Size: 140cm x 70cm | Materials: Lyocell (Tencel®) and Thermoplastic polyurethane | Machine washable: Yes (at 60°C) | Tumble dryer safe: Yes (low)

The Clevamama Tencel Waterproof Mattress Protector is an ideal option for children with sensitive skin as it keeps moisture away yet provides a soft and non-irritating protective surface for them to sleep on.

Tencel is a naturally-derived and sustainable material made from the wood pulp of Eucalyptus trees. It boasts many properties that make it a great choice of mattress protector. Tencel is anti-bacterial, an allergy barrier (resisting dust mites and allergens) and this breathable fabric ensures great temperature regulation. Tencel is luxurious, super soft to the touch and it can absorb 50% more moisture than cotton.

This is also a great consideration for early potty-training days as the high absorbency works really well at keeping moisture away from the skin to prevent irritation. The 100% waterproof base layer guarantees your mattress stays moisture and stain free.

For a tight fit, this mattress protector includes 360° elastic and very deep sides.

Pros: Anti-bacterial, great for sensitive skin and allergies, temperature regulating, soft, sustainable, absorbent, elastic, easy to wash
Cons: Only available for cotbeds

Available from: Amazon and Samuel Johnston

5. Ikea LENAST mattress protector, £10.20

– Best budget mattress protector

Ikea LENAST mattress protector

Size: 70cm x 140cm | Materials: polyester with polyurethane layer and polypropylene backing | Machine washable: Yes (maximum 60°C) | Tumble dryer safe: Yes (maximum 60°C)

At just £10, this white polyester mattress protector is a great budget buy that delivers when it comes to performance. A waterproof layer stops any liquids making it through and staining the mattress. The top layer is soft, durable and easy to wash at temperatures of up to 60°C.

Unlike many of the covers on our list, the Lenast isn’t made of cotton and doesn’t feel like a sheet. Instead, it has a ventilated mesh to keep your little one cool and stop moisture building up but you will need to use a proper sheet on top. Whether this works for your child will depend on their own sensory preferences.

It does fit onto the mattress like a sheet though, with elasticated edges to keep it in place.

Pros: Budget option, waterproof, easy to wash, temperature regulating, elasticated edges
Cons: Mesh fabric so need sheet on top

Available from: Ikea

6. The Little Green Sheep Organic Crib Mattress Protector, £15.95

– Best flat mattress protector

Little green sheep mattress protector for crib

Size: Crib (38cm x 89cm) | Materials: organic cotton with Oeko-Tex Class 1 (Baby) waterproof membrane | Machine washable: Yes | Tumble dryer safe: Yes

This super-soft crib mattress protector from award-winning baby bedding company The Little Green Sheep is a must-have for keeping your tiny tot cosy and comfy at bedtime.

Made from organic cotton, it features a 100% waterproof membrane layer that will protect the crib mattress from a multitude of baby-related spillages! It also protects your little love from dust mites and other nasties.

Parent tester Elizabeth uses this mattress protector with her eldest daughter who has terrible reflux and said she would recommend it in a heartbeat. "Her sheets would get absolutely drenches as she vomited all night in her sleep, but the mattress would stay completely dry under the protector. They're also super soft and made from natural fibres. There are no loud crinkling noises and the breathable fabric helps to ease SIDS fears."

We love it because it is so soft and smooth and even though it is waterproof, it doesn’t make that crinkly sound other covers can make. The price listed is for a single crib protector however on the manufacturer’s website, there is the option to buy a 2 pack – giving you a handy spare and saving a few pounds through the multi-buy.

The only thing to watch out for is that the cover is not fitted, but rather lies flat, so the sides of the mattress can breathe. This can mean it might shift about if your baby has had a particularly wriggly night, although as a plus point it makes it more versatile and can also be used under playmats.

Pros: Organic, waterproof, protects from dust mites, soft breathable, easy to wash
Cons: Not fitted

Available from: The Little Green Sheep, Amazon and Natural Baby Shower

7. John Lewis Specialist Synthetic Waterproof Terry Towelling Mattress Protector, from £15

– Best for comfort

John Lewis Specialist Synthetic Waterproof Terry Towelling Mattress Protector

Size: Small single (L190cm x W75cm), Single (L190cm x W90cm), Double (L190cm x W135cm), King (L200cm x W150cm), Super King (L200cm x W180cm) | Materials: Cotton, polyester and polyurethane | Machine washable: Yes | Tumble dryer safe: No

The terry towel towelling mattress protector has a polyurethane reverse making it waterproof and absorbent. Another bonus of this protector is its natural peppermint treatments which contains antimicrobial protection, meaning it stays fresh and clean for longer.

Parent tester Sarah uses this mattress protector with all her children and highly recommends them, "I like them because they're absorbent and protect the mattress but they're almost padded and don't make that horrible crinkle noise when they move like some do. They also stay on the mattress really well and you don't even really notice they're there unless you strip the whole bed back."

The mattress protector is easy to clean in the washing machine, however it does not recommend tumble drying. It's available in a variety of sizes from small single to Super King size.

Pros: Waterproof, padded, comfortable, antimicrobial protection, no noise, variety of sizes
Cons: Cannot be tumble dried

Available from: John Lewis

8. Mamas & Papas Anti-Allergy Mattress Protector Cotbed, £19

– Best for allergies

Mamas & Papas Anti-Allergy Mattress Protector

Size: Cotbed (70cm x 140cm) | Materials: Cotton, polyester, polyurethane and polypropylene | Machine washable: Yes (at 40°C) | Tumble dryer safe: No

Several of the protectors in our top 10 have anti-allergy properties thanks to their hypoallergenic composition, but this affordable cover from Mamas and Papas puts it right at the forefront when it comes to performance.

Made from a gorgeously soft, terry-cloth fabric, it will make your baby feel snuggly and comfy all night long. The cover is not only waterproof, but also has a non-woven, breathable lining that acts as a barrier to help reduce the risk of allergies.

You can fit it under your baby’s normal sheet or use it alone. Either way, baby will be comfortable and dry, helping them (and you) to sleep soundly.

Pros: Anti-allergy, soft, waterproof, breathable
Cons: Not tumble dryer safe

Available from: Mamas and Papas

9. BreathableBaby 3-in-1 Fitted Mattress Protector Pad, £19.99

– Best for keeping baby cool

BreathableBaby 3 in 1 Fitted Mattress Protector

Size: Cotbed (70cm x 140cm) | Materials: Polyester | Machine washable: Yes (at 40°C) | Tumble dryer safe: Yes (low)

We love this mattress protector pad by BreathableBaby because it is basically a 3-in-1 piece of bedding, just like the name suggests, making it the cleverest protector in our top 10. Its 3-layer protection will ensure that your baby has a comfortable and safe night’s sleep.

The top 2 layers are breathable, and they work together to maximise the airflow between the surface of the mattress and your slumbering babe. Perfect for, babies who get warm in the night, warmer climates or if we’re lucky enough to get a summer in the UK!

There is a mesh core made with AirChannel technology, which reduces sweating and draws moisture and heat away from their little bodies, ensuring they do not get overheated. The bottom layer is waterproof too, which will protect your mattress from any accidents.

Pros: Temperature regulating, breathable, draws moisture and heat away, waterproof, easy to wash
Cons: Only available for cotbeds

Available from: Amazon, BreathableBaby and Baby Monitors Direct

10. Silentnight Quilted Waterproof Cot Bed Mattress Protector, £12

– Best for easy washing

Silent night quilted waterproof mattress protector

Size: 70cm x 140cm | Materials: 80% polyester and 20% cotton with 100% polypropylene skirt cover | Machine washable: Yes (at 40°C) | Tumble dryer safe: No

This simple yet effective mattress protector for cot beds is the perfect all-rounder for babies and children. We love the soft, quilted topper, which will help your baby fall into a peaceful snooze.

The waterproof finish is ideal for babies or toilet-training toddlers, to help protect their mattress from any little accidents. Best of all, this protector is super-affordable and washes up a treat in the washing machine, so you won’t break the bank if you need to replace it, plus you could buy a spare to use while one is in the wash.

Pros: Washes well, soft quilted top, waterproof, affordable
Cons: Cannot be tumble dried

Available from: Argos and Amazon


How did we choose our 10 of the Best?

When testing and selecting mattress protectors, we considered important features such as comfort, size, value, waterproofness and ease of washing.

Our 10 of the Best lists are compiled by qualified and experienced parenting journalists. They rely on a number of sources, including our independent reviews, testing undertaken during the MadeForMums Awards, and feedback from our home testing panel and Top Testers Club. Each year thousands of products are put through their paces by hundreds of parents across the country on behalf of MadeForMums, to ensure we’re bringing you honest and true reviews and recommendations.

Our list is not an ordered ranking from 1-10, instead it is a carefully selected group of tried-and-tested products, each of which we believe is best for a different situation or requirement. We don't just tell you what is best, we help you discover what is best for your family.

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Janet MartinContributor

Janet is mum to two children aged 6 & 9 and a great-Aunt too. She began writing early, penning her first book aged just 7. She has published 2 books