What are Pillowtop Mattresses?
It is a construction method whereby a layer (pillow) of sumptuous upholstery is permanently stitched upon the mattress. It is invariably always going to be one sided. It will invariably be high-loft (28-35cm) They invariably tend to look absolutely glorious.
What use are they?..umm, ..err..
OK. What is wrong with them?
Lets start with the construction method. It is built in two parts. 1) The support section and the 2) The pillowtop section. The pillowtop is stitched directly on to the top of the support creating a two tier mattress. Up to this point there is really nothing wrong with this – all you have now is a fancy shmancy one sided mattress.
The support part of the mattress can be any type – Pocket Springs / Foam / Suspension Springs, even cage springs.
The Pillowtop can also be comprised of anything – Polyester / Memory Foam / Latex etc
The main objection to pillowtops come into what you are expected to pay for them and the lifespan you will get out of them. Just like a one sided mattress you will be unable to turn it so when the pillowtop layer becomes indented and worn, you will eventually have to replace the entire mattress even though the spring support will be sufficiently OK. At this point I must admit that Pillowtops with a natural latex comfort layer do not fall into this argument although pricewise you will be expected to pay a lot more than for a non-pillowtop version.
As a summary to this, there is a good simple solution: Purchase a decent pocket sprung mattress and purchase a separate 2-3″ deep topper that suits your exact requirements. A decent mattress protector will keep these two parts together. You will the be able to Twist, Turn and Rotate the mattress, and Twist, Turn and Rotate the topper. Thereby getting maximum use out of both of them. It is highly probable that the topper part will wear out quicker than the mattress but the replacement cost of the topper will be a lot less than the replacement of an entire mattress. Also, as the mattress will not be taking the brunt of nightly activities it should stay as good as new for considerably longer.