I tried a self-heating mattress topper to see if it would slash energy bills – I was shocked by the results

Lucy Alderson with a self heating mattress topper on 02/02/2023.

SHIVERING in bed and wondering when I’ll feel warm, I start to wonder – is my self-heating mattress topper actually working?

I’m testing to see whether self-heating mattress toppers are worth the hype, or a bit of a fad.

We test self heating mattress toppers to see if they’re worth the money

Shoppers are racing to buy items that can keep them warm for less

I put it on my mattress and was expecting great things

Fans have been raving about them on Facebook and TikTok, claiming they’ll keep you warm at night without having to put the heating on.

That’s a very tempting proposition, as millions of households are are being hit by spiralling energy bills.

It costs a whopping £154.56 a week to leave your heating on overnight – an expense many can’t afford.

That’s why sales of winter essentials, like warm bedding are booming.

Dunelm said its sales had jumped 18%, with customers racing to buy items from its “Winter Warm” homeware ranges, for example.

But is splashing out on a self-heating mattress topper worth the money, considering prices start at around £30?

I put one to the test so you don’t have to.

Choosing my self-heating mattress topper

I decided to choose the mattress topper which appears to be getting the most hype on social media – The Silent Night Heat Genie Mattress Topper.

Fans have been calling it “magic” and “amazing”, so I couldn’t wait to try it.

It features a heat reflecting foil inside a thermal lining, which adds up to 7.5tog of extra warmth to your bed.

I couldn’t spot any other mattress toppers that had the same reflective foil feature, or ones which said how many more togs of warmth it would add to your bed, so I was intrigued to give it a go.

The advert for it on M&S’ website said it would keep my bed “wonderfully snug without the need for electricity”.

An ad for the same product on Amazon’s website said it would be “saving you money on your energy bills”.

I thought it would be a great alternative to using an electric blanket, which needs to be plugged in to run.

As I’m trying to keep my energy bills down as much as possible, I thought the self-heating mattress topper would be a better option to keep me toasty at night.

Using it in bed

I couldn’t wait to get to bed to test my self-heating mattress topper.

I jumped into bed and tucked myself in, expecting to feel warmer than I usually would with just my ordinary mattress topper on in just seconds.

But it didn’t quite work out like that.

I couldn’t feel any difference with the topper on.

I gave it the benefit of the doubt, and waited half an hour, putting a TV show on to pass the time.

But I still felt cold, curled up with my duvet tucked under my chin.

Eventually, I fell asleep.

When I woke up in the morning, I did feel a fraction warmer than I usually would.

But overall, I noticed no real difference using the self-heating mattress topper.

The cost

I bought my Silentnight Self Heating Double Mattress from M&S for £40.

It doesn’t cost anything to run, but as I had limited success with it, I’m not sure it’s worth the money.

There could be better solutions to keeping warm for less.

For example, I’ve had better success using electric blankets in the past, and they’re not too expensive to run.

An electric blanket costs 24p to run a 100W one for one hour a day for seven days, according to Utilita.

If you were to use an electric blanket for one hour a day, every day of the week for a year, it would cost you £12.48 in total.

But I think it could be better value for your money than splashing out on a self-heating mattress topper.

The topper certainly wasn’t as good as my trusty hot water bottle.

My hot water bottle needs six cups of water to fill up – which costs me around 6p boiling the kettle.

Over the year, that costs me £23.30.

It warms me up within a minute – and it’s a really effective way to keep me from reaching for the thermostat.

The verdict

I wouldn’t recommend my self-heating mattress topper – I just don’t think it’s worth the money.

However, as I only tried one type of self heating mattress topper, there could be others out there which are worth giving another go.

It might be worth looking at cheaper alternative toasty mattress toppers that could work better.

For example, Wowcher is selling a Winter Warmth Super Thick 10cm Mattress Topper for £22.99, down from £69.99.

B&Q is selling a Sherpa Fleece Reversible Mattress Enhancer Topper for £23.99 – the fleecy sides provides you with extra warmth, it said.

I’d prefer saving the money and putting it towards heating up my hot water bottle – which does a much better job of keeping me warm.

HOAR contacted Silentnight for comment.

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