Bed Buying Guide

Getting a good night’s sleep is a vital part of a healthy lifestyle. This bed buying guide will help you choose the perfect bed to keep you feeling well rested and energetic all day long.

Beds 101

A bed is more than a cozy place to lay your head. It's the most important piece of furniture in your bedroom. When choosing a bed, you need to consider the style and how it fits in with your existing bedroom furniture. A four-post bed is a classic choice, while a bed with headboard and footboard can look rustic, contemporary or anything in between. You also need to pay attention to functional aspects such as width, length, height and storage capacity. A good trick is to identify your must-haves and your nice-to-haves, and set your sights on a bed that you can wake up in feeling refreshed every morning.

Types of Beds 1


Platform Beds

Platform beds are an excellent choice for master bedrooms and kids’ bedrooms alike. This type of bed typically displays a sleek, contemporary design, and most do not have a headboard or footboard. Since platform beds are designed without a box spring, they're typically lower to the ground than standard beds. This makes them a good option if you or someone in your family has limited mobility. The low-to-the-ground design also makes your room look larger, and the minimal surface area simplifies cleaning and maintenance. 

Captain’s Beds

A captain's bed is ideal for expanding your bedroom's storage capacity. This type of bed features two rows of hide-away drawers installed between the mattress and the floor. Captain's beds are perfect for stowing everything from extra sheets, pillows and out-of-season clothing to books, videos and gaming gear. Captain's beds are available in all shapes, sizes, colours and materials, so you can maximize your organization without compromising the personalized look and feel of your bedroom.

Mate’s Beds

A mate's bed is similar to captain's beds, but it only has a single row of hide-away drawers. This bed is an excellent choice for bedrooms where closet space is tight. Like captain’s beds, mate's beds come in all sizes, from single to king, and are suitable for every age group. However, they stand slightly lower than captain’s beds, making them a preferred choice for children and adults with limited mobility. Another advantage of storage beneath the mattress is it eliminates the problem of clutter and disorganization under your bed.

Iron & Metal Beds

Metal beds are made from a variety of durable metals and can match any bedroom decor theme. A lightweight aluminum bed is an excellent choice for a student's room or for families that move frequently. If you're looking to make a design statement, consider an iron bed or a brass bed. Whether you’re shopping contemporary or classical, there are many types of metal beds that can give your bedroom a beautiful, cozy feel.

Futon Beds

Bed by night, couch by day, futon beds are an excellent choice for maximizing space in any room. Futon bed frames are generally made of either wood or metal. If you prefer wood frames, choose hardwood for greater durability and a more luxurious look. Futons with metal frames are often better suited to guest rooms or basement rec rooms. You can get futon beds in all shapes and styles to match every decor theme. 

Trundle Beds

Perfect for sleepovers, basements and guest bedrooms, a trundle bed is a pull-out bed on wheels that can be stored underneath a larger bed and retrieved when needed. Unlike pull-out couches or futons, trundle beds usually have platform frames and take a normal bed mattress or a roll-out mattress. With a trundle bed, you can easily accommodate unexpected guests without dedicating floor space in your home to a full-time bed. The different styles available allow you to match your trundle bed with your existing bedroom set.

Kids' Beds

Kids will do almost anything to avoid going to bed. That’s why it’s so important to give them something that's as comfy and inviting as possible. Kids' beds come in all shapes and sizes, from basic single beds to bunk beds to mate's beds with storage underneath. When buying a bed for your child, consider the amount of space available. Since kids' bedrooms are often smaller, you may want to buy a narrower bed with guard rails to safeguard against falls. Also, your child may be small now, but growth is inevitable. So if you have the space, consider buying a larger bed that will serve you child's needs for many years to come.

Day Beds

A daybed looks more like a couch than a bed, but it’s actually both. Usually made of wood or metal, a daybed has arms on both sides and a back section for support, but it also employs mattress for sitting or sleeping. Daybeds are ideal for turning an office or den into a spare guestroom. They’re also great for small apartments and kids rooms, doing double duty as couch and bed but using half the space. And with the right bedding or ensembles, a daybed can nicely accent your living room too. Daybeds can also include a trundle bed underneath for an extra sleeping space or pull-out storage. 

Canopy Beds

Similar to a four-poster bed, a canopy bed is a highly decorative and usually features posts at each of the four corners. These rise four feet or more above the mattress to provide a framework for the fabric, which is often draped across the upper space between the posts. A solid sweep of cloth can also create a ceiling, or canopy, directly over the bed. In addition to old world style, a closed canopy model can offer seclusion from the world around you. 

Poster Beds

Also known as four-poster beds, this style is essentially a canopy bed without the canopy. Four posts rise from each corner of the bed to create a stately, traditional look. In addition to strengthening the bed’s frame, the posts can also serve as convenient hangers for nightgowns and sleepwear, or a handle to steady yourself while dressing and undressing. 

Types of Beds 2


Bunk Beds

If you have a big family, you can get two or more of your kids to share a room by setting up a bunk bed. Even if your child isn’t sharing a room, they’ll still appreciate a bunk bed when they want to invite friends for sleepovers. Certain bunk beds, like trundle beds, can be used as large drawers; some other models come with drawers for extra storage. Safety is a primary consideration. Look for a bunk bed that has sturdy construction and railings on the top bunk: you and your kids will both sleep more soundly. 

Loft Beds

A loft bed is actually just one bed, but raised to a particular height so the area underneath can be used for other purposes. This could be a play area, but some models come with open shelving for extra storage, or even a desk for study. Other options include dressers and hutches for clothes. The space can also be used to slide in an extra bed for sleepovers. Some models offer the extra bed as an option, but a cot or floor mattress should fit just fine. Loft beds come at a variety of different heights, so you should be able to find one that fits the dimensions of any kid’s room. 

Low Profile Beds

A low profile bed is similar to a platform bed in that both are close to the ground. But a platform bed does not require a box spring, as the mattress simply rests on slats. Low profile beds do require a box spring, but the mattress and frame are closer to the floor than a typical box spring frame. 

Folding Beds

A traditional folding bed is essentially a folding box spring. It’s a great short-term solution for guests or kids’ sleepovers. Legs raise the sleeping surface to keep the sleeper off the ground (and provide storage for shoes, bags etc. When not in use, you simply fold it up for storage in a closet or even the garage. You can also find folding beds that are similar to folding gym mats. There’s no frame or springs, but the mattress folds up into a square for easy storage. 

Rollaway Beds

A rollaway bed is essentially an even more convenient folding bed. How is that possible? Simple, because it’s got wheels. Rather than lugging your folding bed from room to room, the rollaway variety has locking wheels on the middle support. So when the bed is in the folded position, the wheels are on the floor for easy mobility. 

Murphy Beds

A Murphy bed, also known as a wall bed or pull down bed, is hinged at one end to allow for vertical storage against a wall or inside a closet. Some models come with their own cabinet: when closed, it stands against the wall like a piece of furniture. Most Murphy beds do not have box springs. They use a mattress that is attached to the bed frame, and lies on top of wire mesh or a wood lattice. The great benefit of Murphy beds is the space you save, as the bed literally folds away when not in use. Both horizontal and sideway-mounted models are available, as well as Murphy bunk beds for cramped kids’ rooms. 

Sleigh Beds

A sleigh bed will make a bold style statement in any bedroom. Larger than most beds, the style takes its name from the headboard and a footboard which combine to create a unique sleigh-like silhouette. Wood is the traditional and still most popular choice for sleigh beds, but they do come in other materials, notably iron. Upholstered fabric can be featured on the headboard of wood sleigh beds to create a softer backrest. Drawers in the footboard or bed sides can provide extra storage.  

Bed Buying Tips:

• Prioritize your must-haves and nice-to-haves to ensure your needs are met
• Shop for great value
• Consider how your new bed will complement your bedroom’s decor
• Know the exact measurements of where you plan to place your bed
• When researching beds online, bookmark your favourites to shop as a family  

Bed Features

Bed Posts +

Bed posts are a mark of classic bedroom decor. The iconic four-pillar structure is a symbol of elegance, tradition and fine craftsmanship. From clean and contemporary to rustic and regal, bed posts come in a wide array of designs, colours and materials. Some posts have storage hooks fastened to them, so you can easily keep towels or pyjamas close at hand.

Headboards +

Like beds themselves, headboards come in a variety of shapes, colours, sizes, and styles. Headboards are a key style feature in many beds, but they can also play an important functional role. Some headboards have built-in storage, giving you easy access to books and magazines for light reading before sleep and your alarm clock to rouse you in the morning.

Footboards +

Similar to headboards, footboards are in important style feature in many beds. A bed's footboard typically looks similar to the headboard, but it's generally smaller and less detailed. If your bedroom is short on storage, you can choose a headboard with built-in shelving or drawers.

Storage Capacity +

Beds with built-in storage are a practical choice for bedrooms with limited closet space. A mate's bed features a row of pull-out drawers under the mattress, while a captain's bed has two rows of pull-out drawers. You can also choose a bed with built-in storage in the headboard and footboard. If you choose a post bed, consider a model with attached hangers for holding towels, pajamas and other items.

Ladders +

If you buy a bunk bed, you're going to need a good ladder. In general, every bunk bed comes with its own ladder. The most important thing to consider is whether the ladder is sized appropriately for the person using it. Some bunk beds have ladders set at an angle. This type of ladder is easier to climb than those positioned perpendicular to the ground. Another factor to consider is whether the ladder is detachable or adjustable. All ladders are designed to be safe and user-friendly, but it’s still important to check product descriptions for any age or height restrictions.

Hardware +

Hardware such as handles, knobs and hooks can make or break the look of your bed and help determine whether it complements your other furnishings. Beds with visible hardware are often sold with multiple hardware options, allowing you match the look to your existing bedroom decor. Don’t be afraid to shop down to the smallest hardware details when selecting your bed.

Sizes +

Bed size refers to the width and length of a mattress. The exact dimensions differ from one manufacturer to the next, but the traditional mattress sizes are as follows: • Single bed/twin bed: 96.5 x 189 cm • Single bed/twin bed, extra long (aka twin Long): 96.5 x 202 cm • Double bed/full bed (aka standard): 134.5 x 189 cm • Queen size bed: 152.5 x 202 cm • California King (aka western king): 183 x 213 cm • King size bed (aka eastern king): 193 x 202 cm The size of the bed you buy should be determined in part by the amount of space you have in your bedroom. In general, beds function best when the mattress is 10 cm longer than the tallest person sleeping in it.

Material +

Typically, beds are made of either wood or metal, or a combination of both. Hardwoods provide durability and added elegance, while metal frames complement a modern decor theme. Consider the design elements you’ve already established in your home decor. As a centrepiece of a bedroom, a bed should complement your existing style and stand out in its own right.

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Bed Maintenance Tips:

• Check nuts and bolts every few months to ensure they're secure
• Where an Allen key is required, tape the appropriate Allen key to underside of bed for future convenience
• Contact the manufacturer for replacement parts or warrantee inquiries
• Fix soft material to the bed's feet to avoid scratched floors or worn carpet
• Remove mattress and dust hard-to-reach spots on a regular basis
This article is intended as general information. Always be sure to read and follow the label(s)/instruction(s) that accompany your product(s). Walmart will not be responsible for any injury or damage caused by this activity.



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