A good night’s sleep is the foundation of a healthy life, and the foundation of a good night’s sleep is your bed frame. While consumers tend to give a lot of attention to their mattress choice, the platform on which it sits is often overlooked—yet that’s what holds the mattress in place and provides additional support. Typically made of wood or metal, the best bed frame can come in a variety of styles.
The simplest bed frames support the mattress without fanfare. Typically metal, these basic models are simple in design, and generally allow some space underneath for storage. People with basic bed frames often add a bit of style with a bed skirt. However, since the bed can often serve as the focal point of a bedroom, some folks opt for a more stylish frame to make a visual impact. Canopy bed frames and upholstered headboards can add a romantic flair, while heavy, wooden sleigh bed frames offer richness and warmth. Simpler wooden or metal frames lend themselves well to minimalist or industrial designs, and daybeds work especially well in smaller spaces or multi-purpose rooms.
These quality bed frames were selected to suit a host of styles, budgets, and bedroom configurations to help you make the right decision.
- BEST OVERALL: Zinus Shawn 14 Inch Metal SmartBase Bed Frame
- ECO-FRIENDLY PICK: KD Frames Nomad Platform Bed
- BEST FOLDABLE: Olee Sleep 14 Inch Foldable Metal Platform Bed Frame
- BEST DAYBED: Zinus Eden Twin Daybed and Trundle Set
- BEST UPHOLSTERED: Modway Amelia Tufted Performance Upholstered Bed
- BEST STORAGE: DHP Cambridge Upholstered Faux Leather Platform Bed
- BEST WOODEN: Mellow Naturalista Classic – Solid Wood Platform Bed
- BEST ADJUSTABLE: Lucid L300 Bed Base, Adjustable
Popular Types of Bed Frames
Bed frames can be hidden from the eye or serve as a statement piece. If you move a lot, or live in a smaller space, you may want to consider a hidden metal platform frame, which fits unobtrusively under the mattress. For larger rooms, it may make sense to go for a frame with an integrated headboard and footboard.
Panel v. Platform
All mattresses require support and stability. Panel bed frames feature side rails intended to hold both a mattress and box spring or foundation. Box springs are made of metal, contained in a wooden platform, and covered with fabric. Box foundations don’t contain springs, but simply offer a firm surface to rest your mattress. These supports elevate the mattress higher off the floor, which may be helpful for folks with knee and joint issues.
Platform bed frames eliminate the need for a separate box spring or box foundation. Instead, mattress support is built in, thanks to evenly spaced wooden or metal slats across the entire base. Platform beds are typically lower to the ground and provide good air flow underneath the mattress, reducing mold and mildew concerns. They can be purely functional and easy to hide with a bed skirt. Increasingly popular, platform beds can be an affordable and durable option.
Covered in fabric or a leather-like material, an upholstered bed frame consists of a padded headboard and a platform or panel frame for the mattress. In many cases, the entire headboard and frame are covered in the same material, typically a hard-wearing yet soft fabric like polyester-based velvet, suede, or faux leather. Other luxe details can include button studding or embroidery.
Shoving boxes under the bed has its benefits: it keeps them out of sight yet makes them easy to access, and they don’t take up valuable closet space. However, a storage bed provides a more organized—and potentially less dust-covered—solution. These functional bed frames offer integrated space for storage, such as drawers in the bed’s base or shelving units built into the headboard area. Some storage bed frames even offer easy-to-operate gas lift mechanisms, which lift the mattress to reveal a storage space within the frame.
Often associated with luxurious bedrooms, sleigh beds are, in fact, shaped like a sleigh. The frame is traditionally carved wood, curving outward at the head and foot. Modern designs for sleigh beds include wood and upholstered versions that curve gently, for a little flourish. Because they are a substantial piece of furniture, sleigh beds often work best in master bedrooms or large suites.
Also known as four-poster beds, canopy bed frames feature four upright corner posts connected by a wooden rail at the top. Traditionally made to hang heavy curtains for maximum privacy, today’s elegant canopy bed frames often remain bare or draped with sheer fabric. In a large bedroom, a canopy bed can make a dramatic centerpiece.
A spindle is a slender, rounded rod, with tapered ends. Spindle beds show off this element to the best effect, with a headboard (and sometimes a footboard) made of evenly spaced spindles. Traditionally made of wood, spindle beds can also feature metal, cast iron, or man-made materials. Visually, they offer clean lines and a nod to retro and industrial design.
For anyone with back problems or general aches and pains, adjustable beds aim to alleviate nightly discomfort. Operated by remote control, the bed base is motorized, offering a range of different heights and positions for your entire body. While not necessarily the most glamorous, adjustable bases can be paired with upholstered bed frames, proving you don’t have to sacrifice style for comfort.
Daybed and Trundle
Perfect for offices, guest rooms, patios, and even sunrooms, daybeds offer two functions in one: seating and sleeping space. The frame is built like a sofa, with space for a mattress that can be covered with a pretty spread and throw pillows. Some daybeds are also equipped with a trundle bed; a lower mattress that slides beneath the main frame. The trundle feature can be used as a second sleeping area, or as additional storage instead of a mattress. Some day beds also have drawers underneath.
What to Consider When Choosing the Best Bed Frames
Choosing a bed frame is an important decision. Ideally, most people spend eight hours a night in bed, so comfort is a priority. But so is appearance, whether you choose a simple metal platform frame or a lush, upholstered headboard. A good bed frame should last decades, so don’t skimp. Here are the most important elements to consider before shopping.
Bed frames accommodate the standard mattress sizes: twin, twin XL, full, queen, king, and California king. The frame itself, including any supporting slats, is made of metal or wood, and upholstered frames are covered with padding and hard-wearing fabrics, such as faux leather, suede, or polyester-based materials, although natural fibers like cotton or wool may also be used. If you’re considering a bed frame with a headboard, take your room’s dimensions into consideration, as well as your own height and where you’d like your head to rest when you sit up in bed.
Bed frames come in three basic styles: functional, classic, and contemporary. Purely functional bed frames are under the mattress, and are mostly hidden. Classic and contemporary bed frames offer more style options in both metal and wood constructions. Contemporary frames are typically sleek and minimalist in appearance, with a streamlined headboard and footboard, while classic bed frames include sleigh beds, canopy beds, and bed frames featuring intricate upholstery. If you have the skills, consider building your own bed frame for the ultimate custom option.
While panel beds require a separate box spring, platform beds have integrated slats across the base to support the mattress—and the person sleeping there. Slats on a standard platform bed should be spaced no more than 2 1/2 inches apart, to allow for adequate air circulation and support. Depending on the width of the slats themselves, as well as the spacing, a queen-size platform bed should have between 14 and 17 horizontal slats. Queen platform beds should also have a rigid central beam, running vertically down the center of the base.
Some platform beds also have central support legs, in addition to four corner legs. This adds stability to the entire frame, and prevents the mattress from sagging over time. Corner legs may be visible to the eye, or inset slightly. Make sure to consider the legs’ placement, which may affect your under-bed storage space.
Assembly and Portability
Bed frames are a major piece of furniture, and can be heavy and cumbersome. Some brands are attempting to change this, by offering frame designs that are relatively easy to break down and set up, including portable options and no-tools-required assembly. Metal platform frames without a headboard or footboard are typically the easiest to assemble and the most affordable options. Wooden bed frames are sturdy, but can be quite heavy. Wooden slats may also take a little more time and patience to assemble.
Our Top Picks
When choosing the best bed frame, keep comfort, quality, and style in mind. These top picks are all well-designed, durably constructed, and worth considering.
A basic bed frame that does its job well, the Zinus Shawn SmartBase is constructed of steel, with plastic caps to protect your floors from scratches. It features multiple points of contact with the floor for added stability and to prevent your mattress from sagging. It also eliminates the need for a box spring by providing a firm brace for your mattress.
This bed frame is 14 inches high, with 13 inches of clearance for under-bed storage. It will accommodate a memory foam, a spring, or a latex mattress, and it comes in a range of sizes, from a narrow twin to a California king. The SmartBase is easy to assemble, no tools are required. Be sure to use the special SmartBase brackets to connect your headboard, if you have one. Functional, supportive, and durable, the SmartBase will keep your bed—and your body—nicely elevated.
Crafted from unfinished, chemical-free tulip poplar wood, this bed frame boasts brawn and beauty. The KD Frame’s Nomad Platform Bed, made of locally sourced materials and built in Athens, Georgia, can support up to 600 pounds. It has a platform height of 15 inches, with 12 inches of clearance for under-bed storage. The frame features slats that are closely spaced (less than 3 inches) to fully support a memory foam or a latex mattress—no box spring required—and is available in twin, twin XL, full, queen, and king sizes.
The clean lines and unfinished wood are reminiscent of Swedish design, but if you prefer the look of finished wood, the company provides instructions for staining or painting. You can purchase additional rolling drawers or a twin trundle frame separately. While the frame doesn’t have pre-drilled holes to attach a headboard, you may wish to attach your headboard to the wall instead. For additional help, you can find KD Frame assembly videos on YouTube.
For smaller bedrooms, as well as campers and cabins, the Olee Sleep steel bed frame offers stability, strength, and storage. Its minimalist, collapsible design, featuring steel construction and plastic feet, won’t overtake a room, and you won’t need a box spring because this patented frame secures the mattress in place to prevent slipping and sagging. There is a center supporting bar, which helps make the entire frame sturdier and more comfortable.
The frame is compatible with most headboards, comes in four sizes (twin, full, queen, and king), and has 13.5 inches of clearance underneath for storage. While the foldable version is convenient, a basic model is also available. There’s some assembly required to put this bed frame together, but the necessary tools and hardware are included.
As a seating option and a sleeper, a daybed demands a frame that’s sturdy, unobtrusive, and comfortable—and the Zinus Eden Twin Daybed and Trundle Set meets these criteria. This contemporary twin frame includes a trundle platform stored beneath the main mattress. Featuring steel slats for support, the bed can bear up to 250 pounds.
The manufacturer recommends using a 12-inch mattress on the top, and an 8-inch mattress for the trundle. If you won’t be using the trundle platform for sleeping, that area can be used for storage. Be mindful, however, that the trundle may slip and slide a bit on hard floors, since there are only two wheel locks. Easy to assemble (no tools required), the Eden can make a nice addition to a home office, child’s bedroom, or multipurpose space.
An upholstered bed frame can make an ordinary night feel more luxurious. Modway’s Amelia Tufted Performance Velvet Upholstered version combines indulgent fabric with a superior design. While the fabric has the pleasurable texture and appearance of velvet, it’s 100 percent polyester, so it’s ultra-durable and easy to clean.
The tufted headboard—sewn with buttons in a diamond pattern—is gently curved and sleek, while the frame itself is crafted of solid wood, slatted with plywood for support. With the right mattress and box spring, this bed has the capacity to bear up to 800 pounds. It’s available in twin, full, queen, and king sizes, and in gray, navy, and sea blue.
There’s no need to grapple with storage boxes under your bed. With the DHP Cambridge Platform Bed, the entire frame lifts up to provide clean, dust-free storage inside. And thanks to the gas lift mechanism, you won’t strain to get at your belongings under the mattress. Plywood slats are designed with no-slip construction and reinforced joints, so this is truly a case of sturdy support meeting space-saving functionality.
The Cambridge is no slouch in the style department either as it is encased in high-quality, easy-care faux black leather, gray linen, or gray velvet. The headboard is tufted with buttons to play up the classic yet contemporary vibe. It’s available in twin, full, queen, and king sizes, and while it takes a bit of time to set up, once it’s done, you won’t lose sleep over accessing your stored stuff.
Mellow’s Naturalista Classic bed frame boasts streamlined mattress support crafted of solid wood, with non-slip wooden slats that won’t creak. The frame itself functions as a brace for the mattress, so no box spring is required, and it’s impressively strong, able to hold up 1,500 pounds of distributed weight.
There’s about 8.5 inches underneath for storage, but the wood frame is so attractive, you may wish to keep the under-bed area clear and forgo the skirt. The mid-century modern look works with a range of styles, from traditional to contemporary, and the frame is available in three stain options (light-toned pine, mid-toned cherry, and deep-toned espresso) and twin, full, queen, and king sizes. With its durable construction and simple profile, this sleeper is a keeper.
If you like to read or watch TV in bed, Lucid’s L300 Bed Base adjusts to keep you comfortable. The head inclines from 0 to 60 degrees, and the foot from 0 to 45 degrees. Operated by a wireless remote (batteries and built-in flashlight included), its motor is quiet and responsive. You can even program your favorite position into the memory function.
A dual USB charging station is built into both sides of the bed base, so you can plug in your phone or alarm clock. While the company recommends using a Lucid mattress with this frame, it is compatible with other brands too. Folding hinges make shipping more affordable and assembly efficient. Setup is easy, too. Without the need for special tools or know-how, you’ll quickly be ready to relax. The L300 Bed Base is offered in twin XL, full, queen, king, and split-king sizes.
FAQs About Your New Bed Frame
Still have some lingering questions about choosing the best bed frame? Here are some frequently asked questions about choosing a quality frame, and tips for selecting the materials and support that are right for you.
Q. How do I choose a good bed frame?
The answer for this will vary from person to person. At the end of the day, a bed frame should support you— your frame, your sleep style, and your room’s decor. Beyond that, go for high-quality, durable materials that will stand the test of time.
Q. Which is better, a wood or metal bed frame?
It depends on your needs. A wood frame can be beautiful, comfortable, and long-lasting, though also heavy and potentially more challenging to assemble. Metal frames are also strong, and some options are quite easy to set up. Foldable frames are easier to move or store, and can offer a sleek, industrial style.
Q. Can you put a mattress directly on slats?
Yes, the slats are intended to support the mattress without an additional box spring or foundation.
Q. What kind of bed frame doesn’t need a box spring?
A platform bed doesn’t need a box spring or box foundation. Neither does an adjustable (motorized) mattress base.