Generally speaking, there is no difference between a bed and a bed frame. Bed, bed frame, bedstead and platform are just some of the names for the furniture which we put the mattress on and sleep on it. There are beds that you use without a mattress. Beds can vary in many characteristics, and how you name it is up to you.
Bed frame sizes are generally established dimensions so when you mention single bed frames, we already have the dimensions in our head. However, sizes vary between different countries or parts of the world. So you will often find UK, USA and EU sizes on the market. The most common sizes are Single, Double, King and Super King. There are many other variations of these sizes, for example Small Single, Small Double, Queen, Twin and so on. Make sure to find right bed frame for you.
The market is flooded with sleep products, including bed frames. There are so many different types of beds, that we had to thought out which are main types and which are just differently designed. Following 8 are the main types of our choice.
The platform bed frame has the highest maximum weight limit of all bed frames because the sturdy platform is placed directly on the floor, which affects stability. Platform beds are usually bulky and without a headboard.
This makes platform bed frames rather popular when it comes to a minimalistic design. However, some people might not like the fact that they lose out on storage space. After all, very few boxes can fit under a platform bed.
At first glance, the ottoman bed looks like a divan bed, but the ottoman bed always has storage underneath. It is very useful because it gives you extra storage space that you can easily reach thanks to the gas-lift hydraulic system.
An Ottoman is often referred to as a storage bed but there can also be standard bed frames that come with storage drawers which gives additional space. So, it's not exactly the same thing. You can also check our buyer's guide on the best ottoman beds.
There are divan bed frames with storage, usually drawers on the side, but you can also find divan beds without storage. They are very comfortable because divan beds are stable, and the headboard makes watching TV and reading a book very pleasant.
Divan beds could also be rather good for couples. After all, the added stability might cut down on some of the motion transfer in bed and allow both parties to sleep a bit more easily.
A standard bed frame is usually a bed frame without storage and sometimes without a headboard, made of solid wood. However, this varies from manufacturer to manufacturer. The standard frames are often used in ample space where you don't need to save every centimetre.
And just because they're called standard doesn't mean they're dull. Some manufacturers can get pretty creative and make their standard bed frames look amazing. However, they're typically minimalistic.
A box spring is a very simple bed frame that resembles a platform bed frame. Also, the box spring frame has coils that provide support and prevent motion transfer.
The coils also make the mattress feel a bit more firm. And this is excellent news if your mattress is a bit too soft. Or, on the other hand, if your mattress is a bit older and has started losing its firmness. After all, a good bed frame can make up for some of the faults of the mattress on top.
As the name suggests, a simple bed frame has only the basics – a place for a mattress and legs. There is no headboard or footboard. The advantages of a simple bed frame are price and customizability.
However, it's worth noting that some people might prefer to have a headboard and/or footboard. In fact, some might even want side railings. And that's because if you toss and turn in your sleep, you could just fall out of bed. That being said, a mattress with a no-slip bottom should solve this issue.
Adjustable beds were first used in hospitals and then in homes. They are very useful because you can adjust any position you want, whether for sleeping or just resting. Some adjustable beds come with remote control, and for some others, you will need to be adjusted manually.
Either way, being able to adjust your bed frame is rather useful. For example, if you're suffering from acid reflux or sleep apnea, adjusting your bed so that you sleep on an incline could help out.
You can find upholstered bed frames with only the headboard and/or footboard upholstered, while some other upholstered bed frames are fully upholstered. This gives the bed a sophisticated look.
On top of that, some people might want the added cushioning of the upholstered material. They're typically very nice to the touch and can be cleaned realtively easily. So, it's not all about looks. Although they are usually a bit more expensive.
These were the main types, but these main types come in many different designs. You should keep in mind that some types and designs are not suitable for every room, nor for every mattress.
The panel bed has a decorated headboard and footboard, which usually includes woodcuts, upholstery and other decorations such as paintings on the panels. They can come without those as well and can be found in versions without the footboard, depending on the design.
And if you have a very clear vision of what you want your bedroom to look like, you'll immediately know if this bed frame is for you. After all, they tend to stick out more than a traditional bed frame.
A sleigh bed frame looks old-fashioned because it has a specific shape. Headboards and footboards are made to look like a sleigh, hence the name. This type of bed often has additional decorations to make it look even more attractive and it has become very popular in recent years.
It's not as flashy as some of the other bed frame types but it's definitely a bit more interesting than most standard models. So, if that sounds like a winning combination for you, a sleigh bed might be ideal.
A slat bed can be made of wood or metal. In both cases, you will see vertical or horizontal slats as headboard and/or footboard. It fits well with the Scandinavian and vintage interior design.
Slats are also rather important when it comes to mattress warranties! This is because some manufacturers will only approve a refund/return if you've been using the correct bed frame slats. So, make sure to always read your mattress warranty!
An open-frame bed is very popular because it can fit in virtually any interior, including industrial and traditional. The headboard and footboard are open, and not made of solid wood but the open-frame bed is usually a metal bed frame.
They also typically offer a lot of under-bed storage space. And since they're rather simple in design, they're a lot easier to move around than an ottoman bed, for example.
Storage beds come in a few different types. Ottoman beds are certainly the most popular type of storage beds, but divan beds, bunk beds and other types of multifunctional furniture may also have storage space. Sleepers who have small bedrooms often benefit from storage beds.
After all, if you live in a studio apartment, even a few more drawers can make a world of difference! If you need one for your bedroom, take a look at our buyer's guide for the best storage beds.
The murphy bed was created in the 60s with the growing need for multifunctional furniture that does not take up to much floor space. This type of bed is often called a wall bed and can be horizontal or vertical.
And, as you could imagine, they're still very practical. So, if you live in a very small apartment or simply want more open space, a murpy bed frame could be the ideal choice for you.
Canopy beds have been popular for centuries since stylish bed frames are always wanted, and today you can find contemporary and traditional canopy beds. Contemporary canopy beds usually has straight lines, while a traditional canopy bed is ornate. It can give you extra privacy.
This is because they typically have curtains that can obscure you from all sides. Besides just privacy, this can also help you sleep better. After all, there's nothing stopping you from using blackout curtains!
Four-poster beds are highly similar to canopy beds, with the difference that four-poster beds come with 4 posts that are interconnected. The posts enable you to attach drapes/curtains to add more privacy.
However, just like with the canopy beds, fitting one into your bedroom can be a hassle. After all, they take up a lot more vertical space than most other bed frames.
Daybeds are a great example of bedroom furniture and they are usually more comfortable to sit on than to lie down because they are shorter than regular beds but they can be good for a power nap.
And, just like with a few bed frames we've already mentioned, they make for a good choice if you have limited space. However, we do recommend finding a solid mattress or a good mattress topper so that you don't develop back pain.
In Japan, the Futon is a bed/mattress that is placed directly on the floor, while in the Western world, the Futon can be 2 in 1, a couch and a bed. Should you consider futon mattresses, do check our buyer's guide on the best futon mattresses.
And the benefits here are rather obvious. You can save a lot of space, or even take the futon with you (if you get the original style futon). However, we do recommend pairing it with a good topper, as a futon might be too thin by itself.
A convertible bed is a great choice for a guest room or if you do not have a guest room then for the living room, because within minutes you can turn the sofa into a full-size bed.
This bed type is a life-saver when it comes to guesthouses or co-living spaces. After all, you can get a very decent couch to watch TV from and then a fully-functional bed when the need arrises.
This bed is a favourite of both parents and kids. Bunk beds are ideal for all those who have two children and live in a smaller space.
The only drawback of a bunk bed is that it posses a potential risk. However, as long as the bed has solid side railings and your children know not to jump off when getting up, this shouldn't be an issue.
The difference between a loft and a bunk bed is that the loft bed has just one bed and work space or lounge underneath, depending on what you need. It can be used both by children and adults.
This is especially convenient if you work from home or just like to play on your computer. After all, it allows you to make the most of your bedroom floor space without sacrificing anything.
A trundle bed is the perfect bed frame for sleepovers. One bed is folded under another and you can easily unfold it when your child has a guest.
But we're sure there are other uses for a trundle bed. For example, if you love your dog to death but don't want it sleeping on your head, this could be a valid alternative!
Bed frame sizes typically correspond to mattress sizes, and getting the correct one is essential! This is because a bed frame that is too big will allow the mattress to move around during the night. And a bed frame that is too small will make the mattress bulge in the middle. Not only will this likely cause some back pain but it will also decrease the durability of the mattress! So, here's a graph to help you remember all the bed frame and mattress sizes in the UK.
Bed frames, like mattresses, pillows, toppers or other sleeping gear, come from different brands. Depending on your preferences, budget and location, you can opt for some of the best bed frame brands you can find on the UK market. Here are a few of our favourite bedding brands in the UK.
This is a matter of a personal preference, though we can confirm that the metal bed frames offer the best durability. No worries – if you want durability, you will be able to find a lot of different designs for metal bed frames. the most popular materials for bed frames are:
Each of these materials has its own pros and cons, so you need to consider your needs and wishes and then compare them to the basic attributes of these materials.
Whether bed frames are adjustable or not depends on the characteristics of the particular bed frame. In addition to the already mentioned adjustable beds, some other types of bed frames such as metal frames can also be adjustable. Those made of solid wood in most cases are not adjustable.
Many bed frames fit with adjustable bases, but you need to check this before you buy. Bed frames that are slightly wider than average can be an even better choice if you want to use adjustable base.
It can be said that bed frames are universal. There are differences in sizes between the UK and the EU, but generally these are the same types of bed frames suitable for mattresses which are also universal. In 99% of cases, the mattress and bed frame of the same size will have identical dimensions.
The height of the bed frame is, somewhat, standardized measure that is the same for all beds. Still, some beds might have different heights – meaning you should measure the height carefully to know whether the height is right for you.
The type of bed frame is not the only thing that matters when we talk about whether the bed is noisy or not, but we should pay attention to the material and craftsmanship too. Generally, wooden bed frames are quiet, but this is true for solid wood only. Particleboard will start to squeak much faster than the metal frame.
As for the bed frame type, the platform beds don’t squeak because they do not have many parts and are very stable in general. Still, we have a guide for fixing a squeaky bed, so make sure you read before you start fixing your bed frame.
Not all bed frames are slatted, but it is a very popular option because slats give support to the mattress. Also, slats distribute weight evenly which is very important for sleeping comfort and length of service life.
However, as we've briefly mentioned before, do note that not all slated bases are the same. Namely they differ in the distance between each individual slat. And some slats are “solid” while others have a slight curve towards the middle of the bed frame.
What material is the bed frame made of? If it is made of any recyclable material, then the bed frame can be recycled and vice versa. Today, recycling is advancing and it is possible to recycle many materials that were not suitable for recycling before.
It is important that we take care of our environment, and recycling is one of the most important things. So when you buy a bed frame consider whether you will be able to recycle it.
There are several ways to get rid of bed frame and box spring. Many sleep companies offer a removal service when they deliver a new bed frame to you and this is an ideal option.
If this option is not available, check to see if it is possible for a recycling company to come to you and take care of the bed frame. There is also the possibility that you take the bed frame to a recycling factory. The worst thing you can do is just throw it away.
Finding the best bed frames is not that easy, especially f you are a complete beginner when it comes to beds and related terminology. Luckily, The Sleep Advisors have made the thorough buyer's guide on the best bed frames so so you can find your ideal bed.
While you may think that the appearance of bed frames and bedrooms was simultaneous, this was certainly not the case. The first bed frames were made several hundred thousand years ago, while bedrooms became common only a few hundred years ago.
Until then, only the nobility and the richest people had the bedrooms in their villas and palaces while lower class didn’t have separate bedroom.
Two years ago, a several hundred thousand years old bed was found, or more precisely something between beds and bedding made of plants. It was most likely made during the Old Stone Age, and the goal was a clean and insect-free place to sleep. This changed the previous opinion that the first bed was created tens of thousands of years ago. When we talk about animals, apes started making nests more than 20 million years ago.
Ancient Egypt, one of the oldest developed civilizations, is associated with the appearance of the first raised beds, similar to those we use today. They realised that it was better to sleep raised from the floor, both to avoid the cold and to avoid rodents and snakes. Wooden bed frames were the most popular, but nobles used ones made of gold and other precious metals.
Ancient Rome is a civilization that was centuries ahead of other civilizations at the time, so they had aqueducts and roads that some countries do not have today. In the time of ancient Rome, the bed had already become commonplace, and mattresses were used, usually made of feather.
The poorest still slept on the floor, but now the middle class also had wooden beds, not just the richest members of Roman society. Richest members had velvet bed frames and bed frames decorated with diamonds.
The medieval period lasted for about 10 centuries, and many call it the Dark Ages because it was in many ways more backward than ancient Rome and of course than the Renaissance that followed.
During the Middle Ages the rich slept on beds made of solid wood, gold and diamonds, while the serfs and other poor slept on makeshift beds full of insects.
Beginning in Italy, the Renaissance was a golden age for Europe. After many dark centuries, life for humans became easier because in the Renaissance man was the measure of all things.
Beds and furniture in general were no longer just functional, but also a work of art, not only by adding gold, but also by ornaments. Canopy beds became most popular during the Renaissance.
During the 18th century, the functionality of the bed again became more important than the style, so the metal bed frames became the thing in 18th century. Cotton became the main material for mattresses and pillows, instead of feather.
What has changed significantly during the 18th century was the bedroom, which became common in all homes, not just in palaces. Almost everyone had room made just for rest and sleep.
The Industrial Revolution, which began in the late 18th century and continued into the 19th century, led to mass production. That is why the trend of producing simpler beds than those during the Renaissance continued. Also, the beds have become cheaper and even more affordable.
During the 19th century metal bedsprings were invented, which was a huge milestone in the sleep industry.
The 20th century was the most fruitful time in history for bed frames. Most of the types of bed frames that we still use today have appeared on the market. Also, many new materials are invented, such as memory foam.
The quality of sleep improved significantly during the 20th century due to new mattresses and beds. During the 20th century, it became common everywhere in the world to have a bedroom and a bed, except in tribes that still live as they did thousands of years ago.
Today we live in an era when dozens of different types of mattresses and beds are available to us. Advances in material processing and production, as well as new medical knowledge have led to the equal use of new materials such as foam and natural materials – bamboo, wool, cotton, feather and others.
It is exciting to think about what will appear on the sleep market by the end of the decade and by the end of the century.
Overall, we're willing to bet that most of you had no idea bed frames could be this complex! But now that you know both the bed frame types and even the history of bed frames, we're sure you'll be able to get the perfect bed frame for your mattress.
Lastly, we're going to go over some of the most common questions people tend to have about bed frames. And if we've missed anything, feel free to ask in the comments!
Bed frames are often called bedsteads. This refers to the railing of your bed, though some of the frames also come with a headboard and footboard.
Absolutely! You can put your mattress directly on the floor. Do check our best floor mattress buyer's guide if you decide to go without a bed frame.
While the headboard is a nice piece of decoration to your bed, it is not a mandatory to have it. In some cases, it is bought separately.
While the possibility for this is low, it is possible for a bed frame to break. However, the metal bed frames usually last much longer than the wooden one.
No, they come in different sizes and designs. You need to match it with your mattress in order to get the best sleeping experience.
They cannot, unless you have an adjustable beds. These are mostly used in hospitals and for recoveries when you need to get a certain position for your body.
Poorly constructed bed frame can cause mattress sagging, which results in poor sleep experience. This could lead to back pain problems.
Bed frames last 15-20 years on average. A general rule is to replace it after 7-10 years.