Full size mattresses are a popular option among all standard bed sizes. They work for children, adults, and even some couples. However, once you find the best full size mattress, you can’t just set it on the floor—you need a good bed frame to go with it!
A simple search on Wayfair or Amazon will present hundreds of bed frame options to choose from, each with different styles and slight variations in dimensions. Before starting your search, ask yourself three things: how much space do I have, what would I like my bed frame to look like, and do I want storage?
Bed frames with added storage departments are convenient and space-saving, but they’re not always the most inexpensive. Whereas the more modern “floating” bed frames are aesthetically appealing, but they take up a lot of space and don’t offer storage.
No need to feel overwhelmed—we’re here to help. Our full size bed frame dimensions guide talks about different bed frames and their benefits to help you find the best option.
Who Needs a Full Size Bed Frame?
The obvious answer to this question is, those with full size mattresses, so let’s dig a little deeper—who would be inclined to buy a full size mattress?
Full size mattresses are most popular among teenagers and single sleepers because they offer significantly more room than the smaller twin and twin XL sizes. In comparison to a twin, a full size mattress offers 16 more inches of wiggle room to sprawl out and get comfy. The sleeping space full size mattresses provide offers enough room for a pet or child to climb into bed with you.
Couples don’t usually choose full size beds because they’re a tight squeeze for two sleepers, but if you’re sharing the mattress and have a smaller living space (say a small studio apartment), a full can fit the bill until you have the room to upgrade.
Whether you’re buying a full bed for yourself or for you and your partner, take a moment to measure your bedroom beforehand to ensure a full mattress will fit. Full size mattresses fit most comfortably in bedrooms larger than 10 feet by 10 feet (or 304.8 cm by 304.8 cm).
When choosing a bed frame for your mattress, keep your bedroom’s measurements in mind. That way you don’t have to re-measure or worry about whether or not a potential bed frame will fit.
What is a Bed Frame?
Before we dive into talking about different bed frames, let’s clarify what exactly we mean when we say “bed frame.”
A bed frame supports your mattress and holds it up off of the floor. While, yes, you technically can put a mattress right on the floor, it’s not the best idea. Placing a mattress on the floor makes it more susceptible to dust mites and moisture, two things you don’t want present in your bed—and if you have allergies, placing a mattress on the floor can lead to sneezing and allergy attacks, too.
Many mattress brands will require you to keep your mattress on a bed frame to meet warranty requirements, as well. Bed frames are commonly made of wood or metal, and always feature legs and side panels. Some bed frames come with built-in headboards and footboards, while others come with attachments for those add-ons.
Certain bed frames will appeal to different shoppers more than others since they come in a variety of styles. Now that we understand what a bed frame is, let’s talk about them in more detail.
Types of Bed Frames
Popular bed frames include platform beds, sleigh beds, and mattress foundations, but those aren’t the only styles available. For those who want a luxurious-looking bed frame, four-poster frames are popular, and those who are interested in upgrading their sleep quality usually prefer adjustable beds.
Platform beds have a simple but modern appearance. They are usually built with a headboard, but most of them lack a footboard. Platform beds are designed to eliminate the need for a box spring or other mattress foundation since they have solid or slatted bottoms to securely hold a mattress in place.
We should mention, though, when searching for slatted platform beds, we suggest buying one with slats no more than 2 or 3 inches apart for sturdy support. If slats are farther apart, you may want to purchase a bunkie board to stay within warranty guidelines.
You can find platform beds with or without storage. Some have built-in drawers below while others merely have a high profile that’s tall enough to fit easy-to-hide storage containers below. We suggest opting for these if you have a crowded bedroom or a smaller living space—you never know when you’ll need extra room for storage!
That said, many platform beds have a low profile that doesn’t allow for storage beneath. Keep an eye out on the overall height of the bedroom if storage is important to you.
Usually, full size platform beds have the same dimensions of full size mattresses, so you won’t have to guess whether or not it’ll fit in your bedroom. To play it safe, we recommend tacking on 2 inches to all sides of the bed frame’s labeled dimensions and ask yourself, would this fit? If a few inches makes you pause, then you’re better off choosing something smaller.
Sleigh beds are more or less a statement piece since they’re not built to properly support a mattress alone. They have a luxurious, regal look and are usually reserved for master bedrooms with extra space to accommodate their larger size.
Sleigh beds have outward curving headboards and footboards, giving them a sleigh-like look (hence the name). They’re typically made of solid wood and some will feature upholstery, too. These bed frames contain side panels and a hollow center, so they require a box spring or additional mattress foundation to actually support the mattress.
Some shoppers will even choose to place an adjustable base within their sleigh bed’s hollow frame to enjoy the sleep-promoting benefits of adjustable beds without sacrificing their stylish sleigh bed.
Four Poster Beds
Four-poster beds, as their name suggests, feature tall pillars on all four corners of the bed and are typically made of solid wood. In prior years, these beds were designed with a top panel sitting parallel to the mattress, but now these beds are commonly paired with canopies to give your bedroom a relaxing feel.
Four-poster beds are also a great idea for shift workers who want to use blackout curtains around their bed to create a “cave,” so to speak, to block out light and get sound sleep.
Ninety-nine percent of the time, these beds have a built-in headboard, but you can find four-poster beds without them. They usually don’t have a footboard, though. Despite four-poster beds’ massive height, these beds aren’t super large, either. Their dimensions usually match those of their mattress counterpart. That said, sometimes the pillars on these beds can take up extra space.
Surely you’re familiar with bunk beds, because you probably slept on one as a child or in a college dorm room. Bunk beds are a go-to for those with small living spaces since they offer room for multiple sleepers all on one mega bed frame.
Bunk beds feature two or three bed frames stacked on top of each other. They’re supported by four pillars on all corners of the bed and include side rails around the top bed frames to prevent sleepers from rolling off the bed.
The majority of bunk beds are available in twin and twin XL sizes, but plenty of bunk beds also accommodate fulls, as well (usually just on the bottom, though). You can also find loft beds for full size mattresses.
Loft beds are similar to bunk beds as they feature a bed frame raised up off the floor and walking space below. The space below leaves room for shelves or a desk. These are better suited for those who want to save space but don’t need extra room to accommodate multiple sleepers.
Adjustable beds are the best option if you struggle to get comfortable at night or suffer from sleep apnea, acid reflux, or another sleep-disrupting condition. These bases allow you to adjust the angle of your head and feet to find the best position for sleep. Many of them also feature fun bells and whistles like built-in massagers, programmable positions, and zero-gravity presets.
Adjustable beds have been given a stylish upgrade since their debut in the mattress industry. They now feature sleek metal and upholstery.
Adjustable beds are built with removable legs so they can work within existing bed frames or be used as stand-alone foundations. The dimensions of these bed frames almost always exactly match those of their compatible mattress size—since they are designed to work within bed frames, manufacturers don’t make them overly large. Anybody who can fit a full size mattress in their bedroom should have no trouble squeezing a full size adjustable bed frame in there, too.
Out of all the bed frames in this guide, adjustable beds are the priciest. If you have a more flexible budget and want the sleep-enhancing benefits these beds provide, they’re certainly worth the money.
The last option to mention is a mattress foundation. Many mattress foundations come with optional legs so they can work as a stand-alone base if you don’t have a bed frame already at home (or aren’t interested in purchasing one). They can also be used in place of a box spring within a bed set, as well.
Mattress foundations lack headboards and footboards, and not all foundations have attachments for them, either. These bed frames usually have a solid or slatted surface, feature side panels, and have four legs.
Mattress foundations are some of the most space-saving options since they are usually less than 10 inches thick, don’t sit super high off of the ground, and are available in the same dimensions as mattresses. Your mattress can sit perfectly atop one of these bases to receive adequate support and meet mattress warranty guidelines.
Now, you probably have a good idea of what bed frame piques your interest most. Or, maybe, you’ve got your eye on a few of them. Now, we’ll talk about the remaining things to consider before making a final decision.
Factors to Consider When Choosing a Bed Frame
Choosing the “right” bed frame for your full size mattress ultimately comes down to personal preference, budget, and available room space. Once you determine the style of bed frame that’s most appealing to you, all that’s left is determining whether or not it will fit within your bedroom and budget.
Available Room Space
Room space is arguably the most important factor to think about when choosing a bed frame. Most of us don’t enjoy sleeping in a crowded bedroom. It can make us feel anxious and remind us of stressors as we’re trying to drift off to sleep. One way to make a bedroom feel overly-crowded? A bed frame that’s too big for the available space.
We mentioned earlier that full size mattresses should be kept in a bedroom measuring at least 10 feet wide by 10 feet long. However, if you’re looking for a larger bed frame like a sleigh or four-poster bed, you’ll want to ensure your bedroom is around 12 feet wide by 12 feet long (or 365.76 cm by 365.76 cm).
We all want a nice bedroom set up, but we shouldn’t spend more than what we can afford on a new bed frame. Besides, who can truly enjoy their new bed set when they’re worried they’ve spent too much money on it?
Before shopping, take some time to look over your finances and determine how much you can spend on a new mattress and bed frame. Setting a budget beforehand allows you to shop by price range; this prevents you from wasting time browsing more expensive beds and falling in love with one outside of your budget. Stick with what you can afford and determine that before heading out to shop.
Benefits of Full Size Mattresses and Bed Frames
By now, you should have all the knowledge you need to confidently shop for a new full size bed frame. On the other hand, you may be at this point and wondering whether or not a full bed is the best option for your needs. Don’t worry—if you need to change course, we can guide you toward the appropriate mattress size.
Before talking about other mattress sizes, let’s highlight some of the benefits the full size mattress offers.
Full size mattresses are versatile and accommodating. They’re suitable for children, teens, and adults. Plus, almost all mattress types are available in full size.
Full size mattresses are a larger mattress size that fits within most bedrooms. Queens are loved by couples, but they don’t fit in every bedroom. Fulls are a step down that many can enjoy in a smaller living space.
Full size beds are rather budget-friendly. You won’t have to spend an arm and a leg on this mattress size. And bedding accessories for these beds are readily available and inexpensive, as well, so it’s not difficult to find compatible sheets, protectors, and comforters or duvets.
Lastly, if you ever have to move, full size mattresses are much easier to maneuver and transport than queens, kings, and California king size mattresses. These mattresses are usually lightweight and can be folded to fit in the back of a larger vehicle. If you relocate frequently, this is a huge bonus.
If you don’t feel a full size mattress offers enough sleeping space, you can opt for the full XL variation.
Variations of Full Size Mattresses
There’s only one variation to the full size mattress and that’s the full XL, measuring 54 inches by 80 inches. Full XL mattresses, like twin XL mattresses, have 5 extra inches of legroom, making them a better option for taller sleepers.
While full XLs are a good option for taller sleepers, we should mention these beds aren’t very common. And finding bed frames and bedding accessories to go with them is even more challenging than finding a mattress brand that makes and sells their mattresses in this specialty size.
Other Mattress and Bed Frame Sizes
If the redeeming qualities of full mattresses aren’t enough to sell you on the full size, consider some of these other mattress sizes.
Below, we offer a breakdown of the other standard mattress dimensions and provide a mattress size chart so you can weigh all of your options and determine what’s best.
- Twin Beds: Twin size mattresses measure 38 inches by 75 inches (some brands design their twin beds with dimensions 38 inches by 74 inches, though). They’re ideal for children and teens, but not a good fit for taller teens and adults. Twin mattresses are commonly found in smaller bedrooms, dorm rooms, and studio apartments.
- Twin XL Beds: Twin XL mattresses measure 38 inches by 80 inches, offering 5 more inches of legroom than the twin. The extra length twin XLs offer makes these a better option for solo adults and growing teens. Like twins, they’re also found in studio apartments, smaller bedrooms, and dorms.
- Queen Size Beds: Queen size mattresses measure 60 inches by 80 inches and are popular with single adults and couples. Queen beds fit better in master bedrooms and bigger apartments. Those in smaller living spaces usually opt for fulls to enjoy more sleeping space without feeling cramped.
- King Size Beds: King size mattresses are 76 inches wide and 80 inches long, they equal the dimensions of two twin XLs placed side-by-side. Kings are best for couples since they allow enough space for two people. You need a lot of space for these beds, though, as they’re typically reserved for master bedrooms.
- California King Beds: California king mattresses are a variation of the king designed for taller sleepers. Cal king beds are four inches narrower than standard kings and four inches longer, measuring 72 inches by 84 inches. Like kings, these beds are best for couples who have larger master bedrooms.
- Split-King Beds: Split kings are two separate twin XL mattresses placed next to one another in a bed frame. These are best for couples with different sleeping styles since they allow each person to choose their preferred mattress option for their side of the bed. Split kings are also commonly paired with adjustable beds as they let both sides of the bed move independently.
|Mattress Sizes||Mattress Dimensions (Inches)||Mattress Dimensions (CM)||Recommended Room Size (Inches)||Recommended Room Size (CM)|
|Twin||38 inches by 75 inches||96.5 cm by 190.5 cm||7 feet by 10 feet||213.36 cm by 304.8 cm|
|Twin XL||38 inches by 80 inches||96.5 cm by 203.5 cm||10 feet by 10 feet||304.8 cm by 304.8 cm|
|Full||54 inches by 75 inches||134.5 cm by 190.5 cm||10 feet by 10 feet||304.8 cm by 304.8 cm|
|Queen||60 inches by 80 inches||152.5 cm by 203.5 cm||10 feet by 10 feet||304.8 cm by 304.8 cm|
|King||76 inches by 80 inches||193 cm by 203.5 cm||12 feet by 12 feet||365.76 cm by 365.76 cm|
|California King||72 inches by 84 inches||183 cm by 213.5 cm||12 feet by 12 feet||365.76 cm by 365.76 cm|
Are full mattresses the same size as double beds?
Full mattresses are sometimes referred to as double beds, so yes, they are the same thing. Both fulls and double beds measure 54 inches by 75 inches. When bed frame and mattress shopping, you’ll primarily see full beds labeled as such, but you’ll sometimes see them marketed as “double beds.” Either way, you’re getting a mattress that’s 54 inches wide and 75 inches long.
Is a full size mattress too small for couples?
Yes and no. We wouldn’t necessarily recommend full beds for couples because they only offer 27 inches of personal space on either side, and that’s a tight squeeze. However, if you share a bed and have limited living space, a full size is the biggest mattress you’re going to find to fit comfortably in your bedroom.
Full size mattresses can work for couples until you can find a bigger living space to upgrade.
What’s the recommended room size for full size bed frames?
Full size mattresses should be kept in bedrooms measuring at least 10 feet by 10 feet. However, some larger full side bed frames will require a bigger bedroom, measuring at least 12 feet by 12 feet.
What’s the difference between a full size bed and a queen mattress?
6 inches of width and 5 inches of length—queens measure 60 inches wide by 80 inches long. They’re not drastically larger than a full size, but the 6 inches of extra wiggle room does make a big difference when you share your bed. Queens are also a better fit for taller couples since they provide a few extra inches of length.
We hope our guide has provided you with all the knowledge and insight needed to begin your search for a new full size mattress and bed frame. Remember, room space is one of the most important factors when choosing a bed frame, so before settling on mattress size, measure your room first.
Once you have the dimensions of your bedroom and know what you’re working with, finding a bed frame to fit should be a piece of cake. If you have enough space for a full, you may even find yourself considering larger sizes, instead. However, if you’re somebody with limited room, there are plenty of bed frames out there to help you save space.
If you’re still on the fence, check out our other mattress sizes and bed dimensions guide to compare your options and find what’s truly right for you.
This article is for informational purposes and should not replace advice from your doctor or other medical professional.