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How to Choose a Bed Frame: A Comprehensive Guide

Mattress Resources
Read Time: 9 minutes

  • Consider Your Space: Before choosing a bed frame, evaluate the available space in your room and its layout. Some frames, like a canopy or four-poster beds, may require more open space and higher ceilings, while platform beds are ideal for smaller rooms.
  • Material Matters: Bed frames are commonly made of wood, metal, or upholstered materials. Each material has its advantages and drawbacks. Wood frames offer sturdiness but can be heavy, while metal frames are lightweight but may squeak. Consider your preferences and lifestyle when selecting the material.
  • Budget Wisely: Bed frame costs can vary significantly based on style and materials. Frame-only options are typically budget-friendly, while more elaborate choices like sleigh or four-poster beds can be pricier.

When creating a comfortable and stylish bedroom, choosing the right bed frame is just as vital as selecting the perfect mattress. A bed frame supports your mattress and serves as the focal point of your bedroom decor. With so many options available, finding the ideal bed frame that suits your needs, style, and budget can be overwhelming. This comprehensive article will explore the different bed frame types, factors to consider before making a purchase, and where to find the best bed frames. So, let’s dive in and discover how to choose the best bed frame for your bedroom.

Before Replacing Your Bed Frame

Before you begin your search for a new bed frame, it’s essential to consider what you want to achieve with your new purchase. Are you looking for a bed frame that can change the feel of your mattress, provide additional storage, or keep your bed close to the ground? Understanding your needs will assist you in narrowing your options and finding the perfect bed frame. It’s also crucial to consider the type of mattress you have or plan to purchase, as some mattresses require specific support from the bed frame, such as box springs.

Buying Considerations for Bed Frames

Available Space and Room Layout

The available space and room layout are the first considerations when choosing a bed frame. Most bed frames correspond to conventional twin, full, queen, and king-size mattresses. However, various styles of bed frames can vary in size, so it’s crucial to consider your room space and layout before making a decision. For instance, a canopy bed frame may require open space and tall ceilings to fit correctly. Cramming a large bed frame into a small apartment looks cramped and takes away precious space. Whether you’re looking for space-saving options or statement-making bed frames, it’s essential to consider the available space before purchasing.


Bed frames are commonly made from wood or metal. Every material has its advantages and cons, making it essential to choose the one that best suits your needs and style. Wood frames offer a sturdy surface for your mattress but can be heavy and require more upkeep. They are also more prone to scuffs and marks. On the other hand, metal frames are lightweight and highly durable, with less risk of dents. However, they may squeak and be more challenging to integrate into certain interior design styles. Another option is an upholstered bed frame, which offers a warm and cozy feeling but requires more upkeep and is susceptible to fading, snags, or ripping.

See Also: How to Fix a Squeaky Bed


Bed frames come with various features, from functional to visually appealing. Some features like wheels, storage areas, or USB ports focus on functionality, while others like upholstery, headboards, or wood detailing enhance the visual appeal and style of the bed frame. It’s essential to consider your bed frame’s use and desired style before purchasing. Consider the features that will enhance your sleeping experience and complement your bedroom decor.

See Also: Do You Need a Headboard?

Types of Bed Frames

Now that we have explored the buying considerations, let’s delve into the various bed frames available in the market. Each type offers unique features and aesthetics, allowing you to find the perfect fit for your bedroom.

Frame Only

The frame-only bed frame is the simplest and most basic option. It is often made of sturdy metal, sometimes with wheels for more effortless mobility. This type of bed frame is an excellent choice for mattresses that require box springs. Since the entire bed frame is hidden under the mattress, it doesn’t take up any unnecessary room. Frame-only bed frames are also budget-friendly, making them attractive for those looking for a streamlined and cost-effective solution.

Four-Poster Bed

A four-poster bed frame might be the perfect choice if you’re seeking a traditional and elegant look. This type of bed frame includes tall posts extending from each corner, joined by a horizontal brace at the top. The four-poster bed frame creates a grand and luxurious ambiance in your bedroom. A variation of the four-poster bed is the canopy bed frame, where fabric is draped around and over the posts, introducing a hint of romance and sophistication. However, it’s important to note that this bed frame requires ample space and high ceilings to avoid cramming a small room.

Platform Bed

Platform beds are one of the most popular choices for modern bedrooms. They offer a simple, minimalist design, providing a solid or slatted wooden surface to support your mattress. The beauty of platform bed frames is that they eliminate the need for box springs, offering a sleek and low-profile look. Platform beds are ideal for small rooms or apartments where space is limited. Additionally, some mattresses, like memory foam, require the use of a platform bed for consistent and even support.

Bunk Bed

Bunk beds are a practical solution for rooms with limited space or those in need of accommodating multiple sleepers. This type of bed frame features two beds stacked on top of each other, effectively doubling the sleeping area without taking up extra floor space. While twin-size bunk beds are the most common option, you can find full or queen-size bed frames. Taking into account the weight capacity and the requirements of the individuals who will use the bunk bed is crucial. Solid wood frames typically boast the highest weight ratings, although metal and MDF frames are also popular alternatives. Additionally, some bunk bed frames are reconfigurable, enabling you to switch from a bunk layout to two freestanding beds.

Sleigh Bed

A sleigh bed frame is the best choice for a touch of elegance and sophistication. This type of bed frame features a traditional design with a prominent headboard, footboard, and side bed rails. Its shape resembles a sleigh, hence the name. Sleigh beds are typically made of wood, giving them a classic and timeless appeal. However, it’s important to note that sleigh beds tend to be heavy and difficult to move around. They also come with a higher price tag than other bed frame types. If you’re a fan of traditional bedroom design and are ready to invest in a statement piece, a sleigh bed frame can be the perfect addition to your bedroom.

Adjustable Bed

An adjustable bed frame can be the best choice if you want ultimate comfort and versatility. This type of bed frame provides a motorized base that allows you to raise the head or foot of the bed on demand. Adjustable beds are ideal for those who want the flexibility to elevate their head, shoulders, or feet for added comfort. The bed itself is usually designed to offer platform-like support for your mattress. An adjustable bed can significantly enhance your sleep quality if you have specific health issues or prefer different sleeping positions.

Trundle Bed

Trundle beds are the best space-saving solution for guests or children’s bedrooms. This type of bed frame features a pull-out mattress that stores underneath the main bed and can be easily accessed when needed. Trundle beds require a thin profile mattress due to their design. The options for trundle beds vary considerably, allowing you to choose from different frame materials and price points. If you frequently have guests or need an extra bed in a limited space, a trundle bed frame can be a practical and convenient choice.

Bed Frame Cost

The bed frame cost can mainly depend on the style and materials used. Simple frame-only bed frames are usually the most affordable option, with prices ranging around $100 or less, depending on the size needed. Platform bed frames can vary, from around $200 for a basic version to $1,500 for a sleek and modern design. More traditional bed frames like four-poster or sleigh beds can range from $400 to $4,000, depending on the make and materials used. It’s vital to consider your budget and prioritize the features and aesthetics that matter most to you.

If you want to save on purchasing a bed frame, watch for holiday sales or end-of-year promotions. These sales periods often feature significant discounts on bed frames, allowing you to find a high-quality frame at a more affordable price.

How to Choose the Perfect Bed Frame

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With numerous options available, choosing the right bed frame can seem daunting. However, by taking into account a few essential factors, you can readily narrow down your options and discover the bed frame that aligns best with your needs and preferences.

Sleeping Position

The way you prefer to sleep plays a crucial role in determining the type of bed frame you should choose. Different bed frames can alter the feel of your mattress, affecting your comfort level. If you sleep on your side or stomach, a platform bed may not be the best choice as it can make the mattress feel firmer. On the other hand, if you enjoy loose-fitted blankets or the freedom to move your feet on and off the bed, a sleigh bed with its capped design may not be the most suitable option, especially for taller individuals. Consider your sleeping habits, needs, and preferences to ensure you select a bed frame that enhances your sleep quality.

User and Purpose

Another vital consideration is who will be using the bed frame. If you’re buying a bed frame for a children’s room or a vacation home, bunk beds can be the best choice as they allow multiple people to sleep in a small space. However, it’s vital to ensure that the bunk bed is easily accessible and safe for the intended users. Trundle beds are also great for guest rooms or occasional use, as they provide extra sleeping space without taking up much room. If you or the intended user have health or mobility issues, an adjustable bed frame can give support and comfort.

Room Size and Layout

The size of your room plays a crucial role in determining the type of bed frame that will seamlessly fit. A four-poster or sleigh bed frame can create a stunning focal point in a large space. However, these types of beds can appear overwhelming or crammed in a small room. If you’re concerned about saving space, consider options like platform beds, frame-only beds, or bed frames with built-in storage. These designs offer functionality without sacrificing style, making them ideal for smaller rooms or apartments.

Where to Shop for Bed Frames

Once you have determined the type of bed frame you want, it’s time to find the perfect place to make your purchase. Bed frames can be bought online and in-store, each with advantages and considerations.

Buying In-Store

Shopping for bed frames in-store allows you to see and touch the products before deciding. It’s essential to check the materials used in the bed frame, whether wood, metal, or upholstered. Some stores may assemble bed frames, allowing you to visualize the finished product. Please take this opportunity to inspect the bed frame thoroughly and ensure it meets your expectations. Additionally, consider the assembly required and whether the necessary tools are included. Take measurements of your space beforehand to ensure the bed frame will suit your desired location.

Buying Online

Online shopping offers convenience and a more comprehensive range of options. Before purchasing, take accurate measurements of your space to ensure the bed frame will fit. Carefully review the product description, paying close attention to the materials utilized, assembly requirements, and any potential shipping fees. It’s essential to consider the return policy and whether you will be responsible for return shipping, especially since bed frames can be bulky and heavy. Online retailers like Wayfair, Overstock, and Amazon offer a vast selection of bed frames, making finding the perfect fit for your needs easier.

FAQs about How to Choose a Bed Frame

How much bigger is a bed frame than a mattress?

The bed frame size can vary, but generally, it can be slightly larger than the mattress. Frame-only bed frames are usually designed to match the mattress’s dimensions closely. However, due to their unique designs, certain bed frame types, like sleigh or platform beds, may have larger sizes.

Do bed frames fit all mattress types?

While most bed frames can accommodate various types of mattresses, it’s essential to consult with your mattress manufacturer to ensure you choose a bed frame that provides adequate support for your specific mattress. Some mattresses require box springs or a platform bed frame for optimal support and comfort.

How tall is a standard bed frame?

The average height of a bed frame is around 12 to 16 inches. This height allows for comfortable sitting on the bed and placing feet on the floor when the mattress is on top. However, it’s important to note that bed frames can have different heights based on their design, and some may be higher or lower than the average.


Choosing the perfect bed frame is crucial in creating a comfortable and stylish bedroom. By considering available space, room layout, material, features, and specific needs, you can quickly narrow your options and find the bed frame that perfectly complements your mattress and decor style. Whether you prefer a minimalist platform bed, an elegant four-poster bed, or a practical bunk bed, several options suit every preference and budget. Remember to take measurements, thoroughly research your options, and consider online and in-store purchases to find the best bed frame. With the right bed frame, you can create a sleep sanctuary that reflects your style and provides the comfort you deserve.

Christine Lapp is a full-time graduate student and part-time freelancer for Sleep Junkie. Since she was a little girl on the soccer field, Christine has had a love for sports, and she believes everybody should get up and get moving once a day. Now, she incorporates her love for exercise into her studies, pursuing a degree in exercise physiology. Christine understands that what you do during your waking hours has a direct impact on your night’s sleep. In our better sleep guides, she offers advice for developing healthy daytime habits to nurture a more peaceful slumber.

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