Best King Size Mattress in 2021
A king-size mattress is a perfect solution for couples looking for ample space to get a good night’s sleep. They are spacious, kid- and pet-friendly, and widely available from most mattress brands. King size mattresses have certain advantages, namely the extra space. Of course with a larger mattress comes a larger price tag.
Thankfully, the emergence of online-only mattress brands have made King size mattresses available at lower prices. If you’ve already made the decision to invest in a king-size bed, the next question is obvious; What is the best king size mattress, and which one should you buy? In this review, we’re sharing our top 10 picks for king size mattresses so you can feel confident in your purchase. You’ll also find a shoppers’ guide for purchasing a king-size mattress, including what to look for, the size’s pros and cons, who they’re best for, and the different types available online.
King Size Mattress Buying Guide
Here’s an overview of purchasing considerations and factors when buying a king size mattress:
- Sleeping position—Different positions have different support requirements, so the best king mattress will depend on whether you’re a side, back, stomach, or combination sleeper. The best mattresses for back and stomach sleepers are usually firmer, while conforming mattresses tend to be the best beds for side sleepers.
- Weight—Heavier sleepers not only tend to sleep hotter, but they experience more sinkage, meaning that a medium-firm mattress may feel soft to an overweight or tall individual. Similarly, lightweight or petite individuals who desire firm beds may find their match in mattresses that feel soft to most sleepers.
- Temperature—Do you sleep cool or hot? All-foam mattresses tend to sleep hotter, although recent advancements have improved airflow and made mattresses more breathable. If temperature regulation is important, consider a hybrid or innerspring king size mattress or an all-foam variety with dedicated cooling properties. Check out our best cooling mattresses article for more information.
- Material—The bulk of mattresses on the market are innerspring, foam, latex, or hybrid styles. Each material has its own benefits and drawbacks, and they vary in cost, durability, and more.
- Firmness—While there’s no standardized firmness scale across the industry, mattresses range from 1 to 10 in firmness, with 1 being extra soft and 10 being extra firm. Your weight and sleeping position will most impact the firmness that feels best to you and supports proper spinal alignment. Our mattress firmness guide is a great resource if you’d like to learn more.
- Thickness—Most mattresses measure 10 inches in thickness, but luxury and thick options can measure 15 inches or more.
- Price—Mattresses vary dramatically in price based on the quality of materials used, the make, the manufacturer, and other costs, like delivery fees. Budget mattresses can cost just a couple hundred dollars, whereas luxury king size mattresses can cost $2,000 or more.
- Performance factors—Consideration of a king-size mattress’ performance will give you a well-rounded perspective on the product’s pros and cons. Consider properties like durability (how long it will last), motion isolation, conformity, temperature neutrality, off-gassing, edge support, noise, and more.
- Policies—Third-party retailer and mattress company policies like shipping, warranties, returns, and trials can greatly impact customer satisfaction and experience, especially if you’ll be shopping for your king size mattress online. Make sure you’re comfortable with the level of protection for the investment you’re making and with the trial and return policies, just in case you’re not happy with your purchase. Also be aware that failing to use proper foundation, box spring, or bed frame can also void your warranty.
- Mattress weight—By nature of their size, king mattresses tend to be heavier and bulkier.
- Durability—Durability is key for king size mattresses, which often support the weight of two individuals night in and night out. Research and read reviews about the mattress’ longevity, looking for answers to questions like, “Does it sag over time?” and “How’s the edge support?”
King vs. Queen Mattress
If you’re shopping for a king size mattress, you’ve probably also weighed the option of buying a queen instead. Queen mattresses are more affordable, and if you’re a single person with an average body type they likely provide enough space for you to be comfortable. That said, there are plenty of reasons why a king might be the right choice for you.
Most importantly, you’ll have more room on a king. A standard king mattress measure 76” x 80”, 16” wider than the queen’s 60” x 80” measurements. Whether it’s just you, you and a partner, or you and a pet, this extra space will come in handy if you like to spread out, move around a lot, or even get some space between you and your partner.
A queen does have it benefits, though. As I mentioned above, they are more affordable. They’re also lighter and therefore easier to move around, flip, or rotate. If you want your next mattress to be something that you spend many, many years on, then a king might be worth it for you. If this is more of a transition mattress, consider a queen.
Types of King Size Mattresses
A bigger mattress can solve issues of disturbances like snoring, turning, tossing, and cover-stealing from a partner. If you’ve decided that a king bed is what you need, you’ll need to decide on the exact type of mattress you’re after. Here are the details and dimensions of the most common king size mattresses.
One size larger than a queen, a traditionally sized king provides sleepers with an additional 16 inches of width. A standard king measures 76 by 80 inches, which is the same as two twin XL mattresses pushed together.
An eastern king is simply a synonym for a standard king, and it also measures 76 inches wide by 80 inches long.
The only difference between a California king and a standard/eastern king is in the width and length. California kings measure 84 inches long by 72 inches wide, so they’re best for especially tall individuals and those who enjoy extra space.
A split king, otherwise known as a dual king mattress, comes in two pieces rather than one. Each piece is roughly the same size as a twin mattress. Creating a king bed out of two separate mattresses allows each partner to have their own space, which is often customized for firmness level or adjustable, while still sharing closeness with their partner.
Who Is a King Mattress Best For?
Individuals and couples considering a king are most often deciding if a king is worth the extra money, or if a queen would suffice. Understanding the core differences between them will help you make an informed choice.
Most queen mattresses measure 60” x 80”, whereas a king mattress typically measures 76” x 80”. A queen requires a room, at a minimum, that measures 10’x12’, and a king requires a room that measures at least 10’x14’, not accounting for other bedroom furniture. In general, queens work well for single sleepers and for couples who don’t need much sleeping space. Kings are typically preferred for couples who want the maximum amount of personal sleeping space.
If the price is a concern, keep in mind that while a king does generally cost more than a queen, affordable options are available. Both a king and a queen are widely available in a variety of styles at many price points, so you can find a quality mattress in both sizes at a price point that works for you.
As mentioned, room size becomes a major factor when couples realize that a king is more than a foot wider. Leaving two feet of space on three sides of your room is recommended by interior designers, but that’s the minimum. If you want to include a wardrobe, nightstands, and other pieces, you’ll need more room.
At the end of the day, the choice between a king or a queen mattress is a matter of personal preference. If you sleep alone, queen size is a great choice and will save you room space. If you’ve been sleeping with a partner for several years in a queen and find that your sleep is compromised for whatever reason, upgrading to a king might pave a path to more restful sleep and better overall wellness for the two of you.