Here’s Why Thick Desk Mats Are Just Better

Desk mats are a core piece of any workspace. They give your keyboard a dedicated place to live, and your mouse a smooth surface to slide.

Desk mats and desk pads come in various materials and thicknesses, so it’s hard to know which is best. After switching to an ultra-thick polyester mousepad, I think I found the winner.

In this article, we’ll talk about why thicker desk mats are just better for you and your workspace.

Key Takeaways

  • Thick desk mats provide more cushion for your wrists
  • A thicker desk mat is a more resilient protector of a desk surface.
  • Thicker desk mats are more durable and can last longer.

Why Desk Mat Thickness Matters

Dramatically Improved Wrist Comfort

One thing that sets thick desk mats apart is their ability to relieve pressure from your wrist bones while typing and using your mouse. This is particularly important for those who need to spend long hours at their desk.

Thin desk mats don’t soften any of your wrist load, which can make you rely on other bulky accessories, like a wrist rest. The thinner the desk mat, the closer the feeling of using a bare desk.

Imagine resting your wrists on a soft, plush surface instead of a hard desk. Using a plush desk mat can level up your comfort dramatically.

Thicker Means More Protection

A thicker mat can better protect your desk surface, taking the brunt of stains, spillage, and general wear and tear.

Desk mats with some real thickness can prevent more aggressive scratches, dents, and stains from ruining your desk. That extra layer of padding acts as a much more robust and shock-absorbing shield.

Better Durability and Longevity

Finally, thicker mats tend to be more durable and thus longer lasting. The added material in a thick desk mat helps absorb the stress of daily use at your workspace.

When you invest in a thicker desk mat, you might pay slightly more due to the added material. However, you get a longer-lasting desk accessory as a result.

How Thick Should a Desk Mat Be?

What does “thick” even mean? What is the ideal thickness of a desk mat?

Most desk mats are around 3 millimeters thick. That’s about 1/8 of an inch. In my experience, a desk mat thickness that actually gives you the benefits is around 5mm thick, or a little over 3/16 inches thick.

Desk Mat Material Also Matters

Thick dest mats are great, but this applies to specific materials. After all, a solid wood desk mat won’t be that much more comfortable.

Leather Desk Mat
Polyester Desk Mat
wool Desk Mat with MX Keys Keyboard and MX Master 3 mouse
Wool Desk Mat

Here’s a guide on how to choose the best desk mat material for you:

Desk Mat MaterialProsCons
Leather & PU Leather Desk Mats-Clean appearance
-Sticky feel
-Slower mouse movements
-Stiff with minimal comfort
-Prone to scratches
Polyester Cloth Desk Mats-Smooth mouse movements
-Comfortable & soft texture
-Easily washable
-Less prone to damage
-Prone to staining
-Stitching may fray over time
Wool & Felt Desk Mats-Aesthetically pleasing
-Comfortable & soft texture
-Poor mouse tracking
-Loose fiber material
-Prone to pilling
-Fast quality degradation

The material with the best comfort and minimal downsides is polyester desk mats. 5mm thick polyester desk mats have the best mix of comfort, mouse performance, and longevity.

After using a 5mm thick polyester desk mat, this completely outperformed my leather desk mat and my wool desk mat. 5mm polyester desk mats are now my go-to recommendation for everyone who cares about having uninterrupted mouse movements and superior wrist comfort.

Why You Should Invest In A Good Desk Mat

Check out our article on why desk mats are worth it if you still don’t have a desk mat in your workspace.

Desk mats are not only practical, but they can also upgrade the look and feel of your workspace. With a wide variety of designs, colors, and materials available, you can choose a desk mat that matches your desk setup to boost aesthetics.

To sum it up, a thick desk mat can enhance your comfort, protect your wrists, protect your work surface, and upgrade the aesthetics of your workspace. Don’t underestimate the impact that this simple accessory can have on your workspace.

Photo of author


I'm a big time workspace enthusiast who is constantly experimenting with my setup. Sharing along the way to help people make their own desk setups more functional and inviting, whether it be for productivity or play!

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