WHAT ARE THE BEST BED BUG MATTRESS ENCASEMENTS? [2021 BUYERS GUIDE]

Written by: A O’Neill, Licensed Pest Management Professional

Did you know that between 85-90% of a bed bug infestation lives on or near your mattress and box spring? [1]

If you suspect you have bed bugs, then you’re no doubt frantically searching for ways to deal with them, and one of the ways is to protect your bed with a bed bug mattress encasement (people also refer to them as bed bug mattress covers and bed bug mattress protectors).

So, listed below are reviews of the best mattress, box spring, and pillow encasement covers and their features that help protect you and your bed from bed bugs.

What Is A Mattress Encasement?

In brief, a bed bug mattress encasement is a 6-sided fabric protector with a zipper that fully envelops and protects your mattress.

Do Bed Bug Mattress Encasements Really Work?

The encasement works by trapping bed bugs already on the mattress preventing them from escaping or biting through the fabric so they die of starvation.

It also stops new bed bugs from getting in and infesting your mattress, giving them less places to hide.

As we unknowingly bring these pests into our homes, which is usually through travel or used furniture, these encasements greatly help in detecting the early stages of a bed bug infestation that you wouldn’t be aware of otherwise.

Which Are The Best Mattress Encasements For Bed Bugs?

There is a lot to choose from on the market today, but which ones have the best features that work and are of the best quality to give you peace of mind?

Well, to save you endless hours of research, the one usually recommended to customers is the SafeRest Premium Hypoallergenic Zippered Certified Bed Bug Proof Mattress Encasement.

However, it’s not only mattress encasements that are reviewed but also box spring and pillow cover encasements. Read below to find out which are recommended to protect your bed against bed bugs and why.

If you think you’ve got bed bugs, read our step-by-step guide on how to get rid of bed bugs yourself.

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Top 3 Best Mattress Encasement Protectors for Bed Bugs

BEST OVERALL: SafeRest Premium Mattress Encasement

The SafeRest Premium Mattress Encasement is a top seller for bed bug protection with good reason. This lab-tested product is well made with high-quality materials and features that put it ahead of the other encasements out there, which is why many pest management professionals recommend it.

The encasement has a hypoallergenic, soft cotton terry surface and waterproof backing that fully envelopes your mattress. The fabric also prevents the bed bugs from being able to bite you.

The zipper is one of the most important features on the cover as it can enable bed bugs entry to and from your mattress even if slightly open, which is a flaw reported on many other encasements.

But rest assured, SafeRest has got this covered with its rust-proof, bed bug proof 360° secure zipper™.

Not even newborn nymphs can squeeze in or out of the micro-zipper teeth and feed.

For extra security, a velcro flap covers the zipper end so it cannot accidentally pull back. This additional feature gives you total peace of mind that the bed bugs cannot escape.

SafeRest is one of the few companies that have taken the extra step to ensure the product meets quality standards by having this premium mattress encasement independently lab tested by Snell Scientifics, LLC, who reported:

“The SafeRest terry cloth fabric and the zipper enclosure were effective in preventing bed bugs of all life stages from feeding on the human subject. The fabric and zipper closure also prevented all bed bug stages from escaping during the evaluations. Based on the results of this study, the SafeRest mattress encasements (terry cloth fabric and zipper closure) is effective for preventing penetration and feeding of bed bugs (Cimex lectularius) when exposed to a human subject.”

I personally recommend this mattress encasement as it the one I use because of the quality material, but more so because of the micro-zipper.

From personal experience, I haven’t found it to make me hot and sweaty, and I haven’t noticed any noise or crinkling sound when moving.

I have these installed as a safety precaution against bed bugs. As I work in the pest control industry and deal with lots of bed bug infestations, as well as stay in many hotels, I know just how widespread they are and how easy it is to bring these bugs home.

The only downside I’ve found has nothing to do with the product, but with the company itself, and that is their customer service. I have tried to contact them a couple of times with some questions, and they never got back to me. But as for the encasement itself, I haven’t found any reason for complaint.

Despite my personal comment about the company, online reviews for this high-quality bed bug mattress cover are highly rated and it should definitely be part of your pest control method against bed bugs.

RUNNER UP: Utopia Bed Bug & Waterproof Mattress Encasement

The Utopia bed bug and waterproof mattress encasement works in the same way as the SafeRest encasement above, by preventing bed bugs from entering and exiting your mattress.

The stretchable knitted polyester fabric and PVC waterproof TPU (thermoplastic polyurethane) backing on all six sides protect your mattress from accidents or spills that might stain it.

More importantly, it protects against bed bugs and dust mites with a velcro flap covering the zipper traveler to keep it in place, ensuring no bed bugs can get in or get out of your mattress.

Overall consumer comments are favorably saying that it completely protects against bed bugs, it is easy to put on and well made, soft, comfortable, and good for allergy sufferers.

However, other consumers have reported that they haven’t found it to be waterproof, and if you’re a light sleeper, this encasement might not be for you as some have mentioned it makes a light crinkling sound when they move.

Although this encasement only has a 30-day warranty, it should still be considered because of the quality and its level of protection against bed bugs.

BEST VALUE: Linenspa Mattress Encasement

The Linenspa mattress encasement is a zippered protector offering 360-degree protection against bed bugs, dust mites, and fluids.

This encasement cover functions in the same way as the two above by stopping bed bugs from getting into and out of your mattress.

The ultra-thin encasement has a polyester fabric surface with a PVC waterproof TPU (thermoplastic polyurethane) lining that protects your mattress against spills and stains.

What is the warranty? It comes with a 10-year limited warranty which “covers any defects in mattress protector materials or workmanship as long as you make a claim within five days of damage and have followed all laundering instructions on the care label.

However, be sure to check their website as they have a list of warranty exclusions!

Online reviews are positive overall and state that this mattress encasement is well constructed, noiseless, easy to put on, and waterproof.

But there are negative reviews with some claiming the holes at the seams are big enough for bed bugs to squeeze through, to which the manufacturer to their credit has responded and offered an immediate replacement.

Although not ideal when dealing with bed bugs as you want the mattress cover to work without any defects, but at least Linenspa’s customer service is quick to respond and rectify.

Best Box Spring Encasements For Bed Bugs

People often think it’s only the mattress that needs covering, but this is not the case as bed bugs love to hide deep inside the structure of the box spring as well.

So protecting both your mattress and box spring goes hand in hand as part of the process of fighting bed bugs and limiting the number of places for them to hide.

However, buying both at the same time might not be within everyone’s budget, so encase the box spring first as it has many crevices inside where bed bugs lay their eggs.

BEST OVERALL: SafeRest Premium Box Spring Encasement

I recommend the SafeRest Premium Box Spring Encasement for the same reasons I recommend their mattress encasement, and that’s because of the product’s quality and effectiveness at preventing bed bugs from getting into and out of the box spring.

As with the mattress encasement, the zipper on the box spring protector is one of the most important features, and the SafeRest micro-zipper stops even newborn nymphs from being able to squeeze through the zipper teeth.

For extra peace of mind, there is a velcro flap to cover the zipper closure preventing it from accidentally opening, which would allow bed bugs to crawl in and out.

SafeRest’s encasements are lab tested and not only certified as bed bug-proof but they also provide allergy relief as well as being registered with the FDA as a Class 1 medical device. So it’s safe to say they have invested heavily to make sure their encasements are up to the task.

Another high-quality feature is the cotton terry surface and polyurethane membrane backing which makes it waterproof as well as great for allergy and asthma sufferers.

A 10-year full replacement warranty is offered and some customers on Amazon have reported that the product is not waterproof and have been offered a replacement. However, most box spring encasements tend not to be made with waterproof fabric as it’s generally not needed.

Overall, customers who bought this SafeRest box spring encasement are very satisfied with it because it does the job of containing the bed bugs inside and preventing new ones from infesting it.

RUNNER UP: Hospitology Sleep Defense System Bed Bug Proof Box Spring Encasement

The Sleep Defense line offers lab-tested, budget-friendly bed bug encasements that have many favorable reviews online claiming it successfully prevents bed bugs from getting into and out of their box spring.

It’s made from 100% polyester knit fabric that is stretchable which makes it easy to install.

One of the features this cover provides, which is not offered by many other brands, is an installation kit consisting of square tabs.

The tabs are used to cover any sharp edges or corners on the bed frame and help prevent the encasement from accidentally tearing. A torn encasement is no longer protecting your bed or you from bed bugs!

The downside of this encasement is the online comments about how easily it tears, so take extra care when installing it and ensure the tabs cover ALL sharp edges.

A 5-year limited warranty covers defects in workmanship and materials, but you would have to email Hospitology directly to find out what this covers exactly.

Hospitology only sells on Amazon and the company website is somewhat sparse and doesn’t show actual proof of the lab tests. But you can send them a quick email, as I did, and ask for a copy of the lab test results, which they were quick to provide.

For the price, this bed bug box spring encasement offers good value for money and does the job as long as it’s put on the box spring with care.

Best Bed Bug Pillow Covers

If you’re going to use mattress and box spring encasements to protect you and your bed, then it goes without saying that your pillows should also be protected.

When inspecting your pillows for evidence of bed bugs, look along the seams and where the label meets the pillow as you will often find bed bug eggs deposited along these.

You can treat your pillows before encasing them by putting them in the dryer for a minimum of 30 minutes at a minimum of 125ºF (51ºC) (check label instructions first) as bed bug eggs are heat resistant up to this.

As well as protecting you and your pillow from bed bugs, the pillow covers recommended below extend the life of your pillow from wear and tear and also protect against dust mites, allergens, and fluids.

BEST OVERALL: SafeRest Premium Pillow Protector

Again, I recommend the SafeRest range as I know they offer quality made products and the premium pillow protector is no exception.

This pillow encasement has a soft terry cotton surface and a polyurethane membrane making it bed bug bite proof. The micro zipper also prevents the smallest baby bed bugs from being able to crawl through.

A minor downside a few have mentioned is the cover creates a balloon of air when zipped up. This is easily resolved by leaving the zipper open slightly, pushing down on the pillow slowly so the air escapes, and then close the zipper up completely.

Overall, customer satisfaction is very high, reporting the pillow cover helps allergy sufferers, it’s noiseless and waterproof, and keeps bed bugs from entering or escaping.

Bed Bug Mattress Encasements: What Else To Consider

Bear in mind that whichever brand you go for, none of them will have a 100% customer satisfaction rate. Each brand is not without its own defective products from time to time that unfortunately get packaged and sold.

But one thing to be aware of is that some of the mattress, box spring, or pillow encasements are returned for whatever reason and can then get resold. Some people have been unlucky enough to receive one of these returned items and have found dead bed bugs on it. So always carefully inspect the packaging and product when opening.

REMEMBER: Make sure the mattress and box spring encasements, and pillow covers are CERTIFIED BED BUG PROOF. Although bed bugs often die within 3-4 months without a blood meal, they have been known to live for up to 1 year, so leave them on for a minimum of 1 year, or indefinitely!

Below are some frequently asked questions (FAQs) and answers about bed bug mattress covers that you might find helpful

Will any mattress cover work for bed bugs?

No, a normal mattress cover is more like a bedsheet and offers no protection against bed bugs.

Here is what to look for when buying a mattress encasement:

You need a certified bed bug-proof, six-sided encasement cover that completely envelopes the mattress.

The certified encasement should have a micro-zipper designed so bed bugs cannot squeeze through the teeth. I recommend buying an encasement that has an added velcro flap or some type of additional mechanism to secure the zipper in place and prevent it from opening accidentally.

The material must also be bed bug bite-proof so the bugs cannot bite through the encasement and feed.

As well as the above features, the covers are usually hypoallergenic and made from cotton or polyester fabric with a protective backing.

Not only do encasements protect you from these biting pests and allergens, but they also waterproof so protect your mattress from fluids and spills.

It is also a good idea to use a bed bug mattress encasement even if you do not have bed bugs. This is especially recommended if you live in an apartment building, or travel and/or provide overnight accommodation.

Bed bug mattress encasements are usually white, which makes it easy to spot any bed bugs and fecal matter day or night.

Not only will you need to encase your mattress, but you’re box spring and pillows will also need certified bed bug-proof encasements.

The higher quality encasements tend to be more durable and the one complaint seen over and over again is how easy some tear.

They are no longer protective once they become damaged, as even a tiny hole will enable a nymph to crawl through it.

So it’s vital to choose an encasement that has been tested and certified bed bug-proof and won’t weaken with everyday wear and tear.

Should I Throw Away My Mattress If I Have Bed Bugs?

I never advise throwing out your mattress, unless you have a very severe infestation and then it should bed discarded properly. Otherwise, keep the mattress, remove the bed bugs from it and encase it, along with the box spring and pillows.

Getting rid of the mattress will not solve your bed bug problem. They will be in other areas of the bed and probably in areas close to the bed, so it won’t be long before they infest a new mattress.

Also, it’s expensive to buy a new mattress, but if you really feel you need a new one, then make sure you have definitely eliminated all bed bugs first beforehand.

How Else Can You Protect Your Bed Against Bed Bugs?

Bed bug interceptors work well in conjunction with encasements as they help monitor for a bed bug infestation.

These passive traps don’t require pesticides and help you detect the introduction of bed bugs, as well as monitor an infestation.

They prevent any bed bugs from being able to crawl up your bed and onto your mattress. Read all about bed bug interceptors.

Will A Mattress Encasement Get Rid of Bed Bugs?

Unfortunately not, a mattress encasement is only part of the pest control treatment that will be needed to get rid of bed bugs.

Although an encasement prevents the bed bugs inside your mattress from escaping, it cannot stop bed bugs from other areas of the room crawling onto your bed (that’s why interceptors are a good idea).

People often think the encasements are not working as they still find bed bugs on it, but the bugs are not escaping from the encasement (unless there is a hole or tear, so always inspect on a regular basis), they are either already on the bed frame, such as behind the headboard, or have crawled over from elsewhere in the room.

It’s certainly easier to spot any new bed bugs on your bed when you have the encasements installed and leaves these pests with fewer places to hide.

Can You Wash Bed Bug Mattress Covers?

The majority of covers can be hand washed or machine washed in cool to warm water, using a bleach-free, mild detergent.

They can put in the tumble dryer with other clothes on a low to medium heat setting only.

Do not iron or dry clean any encasements.

Follow the label instructions on your actual encasement as washing or drying on the wrong setting could make the warranty invalid.

It is recommended the encasements are washed prior to installation, but DO NOT remove them during an infestation! In fact, I recommend leaving them on indefinitely. If you need to clean any of the encasements, just spot clean the area with a damp cloth.

I’ve been in the pest control industry helping people get rid of their unwanted pests for over 20 years, both in the UK and Canada.

As a licensed pest management professional, I’ve seen and treated just about every common household pest, insect, or rodent, you can think of. I’ve seen the damage caused when an infestation has been left too long and has become hard to get rid of.

For this reason, peststopsolutions.com was created. By having honest advice and the right guidance to hand, along with scientific evidence to back up claims, you are given information on the best eradication methods, as well as how to get rid of most pests yourself.

[1] https://www.ag.ndsu.edu/publications/home-farm/taking-the-bite-out-of-bed-bug