Mattresses come in several different sizes, and trying to figure out which size to purchase can be confusing. If you aren’t sure what mattress size is right for you, you’re not alone—this is a common dilemma.
Luckily, if you put in some thought before making a purchase, you can make the best choice. Considerations such as how many people (and/or pets) will share the bed, how much floor space you have in your room, and your sleep preferences (do you like to snuggle with a partner or have space to sprawl out?) will all make a difference in what size mattress you buy.
In this mattress size guide, we’ll cover these questions as well as other helpful information. You’ll find an explanation of each mattress size plus some advice on how to tell if a given size is best for you; we’ll explain dimensions, what makes a mattress size unique, and considerations such as mattress weight. Keep reading to get the lowdown on all of these topics and to find the mattress size that’s best for you.
Standard Mattress Sizes
In this section, you’ll find an explanation of each main mattress size, starting with the smallest (crib) and going up all the way to California King.
- 28” x 52”
- Description: As the name suggests, crib mattresses are used in baby cribs. For safety reasons, they’re very firm. They’re a standard size and will fit in nearly any crib you purchase. Some crib mattresses are innerspring and others are foam. Look for one that’s easy to clean.
- Who It’s Good For: Babies or toddlers who sleep in a crib.
- Who It’s Not Good For: Anyone who doesn’t sleep in a crib, i.e. children who have started crawling out or are otherwise too big.
- 28” x 52”
- Description: Toddler mattresses are usually the same size as crib mattresses. They’re softer, though, and meant for toddler beds. Many mattresses are dual-sided, with a firm side for babies and a softer side for toddlers. Toddler mattresses are an optional step—alternately, you could simply purchase your toddler a twin mattress when they outgrow the crib.
- Who It’s Good For: Toddlers and small children.
- Who It’s Not Good For: Older children.
- 38” x 75”
- Description: You most likely slept on a twin mattress as you were growing up; in most cases, a twin is the perfect size to last a child from toddlerhood until they head off to college.
- Who It’s Good For: Children, teens, single adults. Twin mattresses are also good for bunk beds/daybeds and small spaces, and they’re very portable.
- Who It’s Not Good For: Couples, or tall adults with a larger body type.
- 38” x 80”
- Description: This is the mattress size that’s most commonly found in dorm rooms. It’s a few inches taller than a conventional twin bed, and for a teen who’s shot up within the last year, those few inches can make a big difference in comfort and ease of sleep.
- Who It’s Good For: College kids, single adults, or teens who are a little too tall for a normal twin mattress. A twin XL can be a great “starter mattress” for a first apartment.
- Who It’s Not Good For: Couples, or anyone who wants ample space to sprawl out.
- 54” x 75”
- Description: Also called a double mattress, a full mattress is a pretty big jump space-wise from a twin or twin XL. Full mattresses are helpful because they can be reused many times and adapted to work for just about anybody—purchase one for a single adult and then, if they get married and outgrow it, save it for a guest bedroom or a teenager.
- Who It’s Good For: Teenagers; adults sleeping alone or with a pet; couples without a pet who like to snuggle up close (a full mattress can get a little tight with two people). Ideal for a guest room.
- Who It’s Not Good For: Couples who want to sleep with a pet/child, or who just want some space to stretch; single adults who are tall.
- 60” x 80”
- Description: Queens are the most common mattress size for couples to purchase. A queen offers a nice balance: small enough to be cozy but still large enough to retain some personal space if that’s what you want.
- Who It’s Good For: Single adults who sleep with pets; couples who sleep without pets. A queen fits best in a 10 x 10 room.
- Who It’s Not Good For: Couples who sleep with pets and/or children.
- 76” x 80”
- Description: For a little perspective, a king-size mattress is the same size as two twins if they were placed side by side. It’s a great fit for a larger bedroom and two adults who often sleep with children or pets in the same bed.
- Who It’s Good For: Couples who sleep with pets or children, or who just want room to spread out. (Breakfast in bed, anyone?)
- Who It’s Not Good For: Smaller master bedrooms.
- 72” x 84”
- Description: The biggest mattress size available, a California king can more or less fit your whole family and is good for taller adults, too.
- Who It’s Good For: Couples who sleep with multiple pets and/or kids, couples who are taller (over 6’), or couples who have a big master bedroom with lots of space.
- Who It’s Not Good For: Smaller master bedrooms.
What Size Should I Choose?
The ideal mattress size for someone will vary depending on the following factors:
- Number of Sleepers. Do you live alone? Go small. Unless you really want to spread out, there’s no need to take up too much space with a mattress. If you sleep with a partner, that calls for a bigger mattress. And if you receive visitors during the night—such as a dog, cat, or a child who had a nightmare—count them in, too.
- Sleeping Position. Consider how much space you take up as you sleep. Do you sleep on your side, back, stomach, or a mixture of these? Do you like to curl up under the blankets or sprawl out across the bed? This will affect what mattress size you need. If you aren’t sure exactly how you sleep, take a few nights and pay attention to the position you’re in (plus where you are on the mattress) when you go to sleep, any time you wake up during the night, and when you get up in the morning. If you sleep with a partner, don’t forget to consider their sleeping position as well.
- Sleep Preferences. If you sleep with a partner, you may want to cuddle up close to them—or you might prefer to have your own space. (This can also apply to a pet: Does your cat sleep as far away from you on the bed as possible, or does your big fluffy dog spread himself out?) Talk with your partner about sleep preferences and let that inform your buying decision.
- Body Type. Larger individuals may want more space in a mattress. Taller people could choose a king mattress or even a California king, so your feet won’t stick off the end.
- Room Space. The amount of space you have in your room might make the decision for you as far as which mattress size to purchase; you may want a king-size bed, but only a queen will fit in your room. Keep in mind you can always upgrade your mattress later if you move houses, or if you decide you prioritize a bigger bed over more floor space after all.
- Special Circumstances. Maybe there’s a set of bunk beds in your kids’ room, or you live in an RV. Does your spouse travel for work, meaning you’re often alone in the bed? Are you single, but enjoy sprawling out to watch Netflix at night? Think about any extenuating circumstances before going ahead with a purchase.
Other Size Considerations
When it comes to size, length by width dimensions aren’t the only consideration—here are some other factors that come into play.
Mattresses come in a variety of thicknesses—usually between 6 and 18 inches, with 12 being average. Some brands offer their mattresses in multiple thicknesses. Often, the thickness of a mattress will depend on the mattress type. Memory foam and latex are thinner, whereas innerspring is usually in the middle; hybrid mattresses, which combine innerspring and foam, are the thickest.
How can you find your ideal mattress thickness? Much of it is based on your preference. Consider your bed, too. A bunk bed, for example, will call for thinner mattresses. And your weight also plays a part—lighter individuals may prefer thinner mattresses while heavier individuals look for more support and a thicker mattress.
You may want to consider the weight of a mattress before purchasing. Mattress weight can make a big difference when you’re setting up a mattress, or if you need to move it to a different room or a different house.
Hybrid mattresses are the heaviest type of mattress. A queen-size hybrid will probably weigh around 115 pounds. Memory foam mattresses are relatively light.
Mattress size isn’t the only thing to consider: bedding size is important, too. Your bedding needs to be the same size as your mattress so it will fit properly; this is especially important for crib mattresses, where the sheets need to fit snugly for safety. And it’s important for other mattress sizes, too. If a fitted sheet is too small, you simply won’t be able to get it on the mattress. For other types of bedding, however—such as flat sheets and comforters/bedspreads—you may be able to reuse old bedding from another mattress. Just make sure the bedding is large enough to cover you but small enough that it doesn’t touch the floor.
Take bedding size into consideration as you plan your budget. If you choose to buy a bigger mattress than you’ve had before, you’re going to have to buy bigger bedding, too—which might get costly. You may even need a new bed frame. And a comforter, blankets, and pillows will all be on your shopping list in addition to sheets.
|Mattress size||Fitted sheet size (in inches)||Pillow size|
|California King||73 x 85 x 15||20 x 36|
|King||73 x 80 x 15||20 x 36|
|Queen||60 x 80 x 15||20 x 30|
|Full||54 x 76 x 15||20 x 28|
|Twin XL||39 x 80 x 14||20 x 26|
|Twin||39 x 76 x 14||20 x 26|
|Toddler||28 x 52|
|Crib||27 x 51|
Looking for more mattress resources? Check out our guides to the main mattress types on the market: