What is a Platform Bed?

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A platform bed is a modern and stylish foundation that pairs perfectly with any mattress type. They are sturdy, supportive bases that enhance comfort and protect your mattress from becoming damaged. Platform beds have a simple, low-raised frame with a slatted, solid wood or metal surface, eliminating the need for a box spring.

With so many options to choose from, looking for a new foundation might be a bit difficult for some. In this article, we’ll help you choose the best platform bed for a good night’s sleep.

Platform Bed Benefits

Platform beds have a sleek, simplistic look and often feature additional drawers and shelves to maximize storage space. Platform beds are a cost-effective option since they do not require a box spring and usually include headboards, footboards, or both.

Known for their firm surface, platform beds are an excellent choice for heavy individuals. Sleepers who weigh more than 230 pounds need a sturdy sleeping surface to prevent their hips, shoulders, and back from sinking out of alignment.

Unlike box springs, platform bases accommodate all mattress types including memory foam mattresses, hybrid beds, innerspring beds, and latex mattresses. Furthermore, platform beds may include a slatted base, which allows more air circulation to your mattress.

Platform Bed Drawbacks

There are a few disadvantages of purchasing a platform bed. If you have back or joint pain, a platform bed is not the best option. Since platform beds are low-profile, climbing into bed requires more effort. It might be difficult for older individuals and those with limited mobility to get in their beds comfortably, which could worsen their condition. 

Also, platform beds are too firm for people who prefer a soft, contouring sleeping surface. Sleepers should try using a slatted foundation if they want a bed with a plush feel. Lastly, solid platform beds do not have the best air circulation, which can cause people to overheat or wake up feeling sweaty.

Types of Platform Beds

Now that you’ve learned the pros and cons of platform beds, you’ll want to become familiar with the different types of foundations. Below, we outline the most common platform beds available for purchase.

Slatted Platform Beds

A slatted platform bed consists of a frame with side rails to place the wooden slats across. For the best support, your slats should be no wider than 2 to 3 inches apart.

Sometimes, these beds include adjustable slats designed to match specific sleeping preferences. For instance, you can space the slates farther apart to increase the softness of a new bed. Other sleepers like to keep the slats closer together to add firmness to their mattress.

Extra-wide slats cause your mattress to sink and do not provide your body with enough support. If your slats are more than 3 inches, use a bunkie board or plywood for more even support.

Metal Platform Beds

Metal platform beds offer additional support for your mattress than most slatted platform beds. Since metal platform beds are constructed with durable materials like steel, they are more resistant to everyday wear and tear. However, metal platform beds tend to be more expensive than those with slatted bases.

Solid Platform Beds

Solid platform beds sit lower to the ground than slatted and metal platform beds. A solid base is usually made of wood or particleboard with tiny air channels. If you prefer a firm surface, it’s better to look to solid bases. Solid bases offer a sturdy even surface for your mattress and make your bed feel firmer.


Can I pair a box spring with a platform bed?

It is possible to pair a box spring with a platform bed; however, it is not required. Platform beds offer an even surface for your bed to rest on and are compatible with all mattress types. This is different from traditional box springs, which are better for older innerspring mattresses.

Since platform beds are low profile bases, adding a box spring to your platform bed is a great way to raise your bed. It’s important to note, box springs are more susceptible to damage and wear down easily.

What is the average height of a platform bed?

With your mattress included, platform beds are typically 18 inches off the ground. Platform beds have a lower profile than traditional bed frames, and some bases may only stand 6 inches above the ground. Platform beds feature legless solid blocks or small legs with a solid or slatted surface.

How thick should a mattress be for a platform bed?

The best mattresses for platform beds should be at least 12 to 14 inches thick. Several contributing factors determine the thickness of a mattress including, the number of layers. Thinner mattresses are less expensive, but they tend to wear down easier than thicker mattresses.

Can you attach a headboard to a platform bed?

Many types of headboards can be added to a platform bed, whether it consists of metal, wood, or upholstery. Though there are sleek platform designs, some platform beds may include headboards and footboards as well. This is often a more cost-effective option and will save you from the hassle of attaching a headboard to your base.

How expensive are platform beds?

Platform beds are more affordable than traditional bed frames, and you can purchase them for a low of $200. Luxury platform beds range from $800 to $2000. Typically, platform beds with lights or storage drawers come with a higher price tag.

While you are browsing, pay attention to the material of your mattress foundation. Solid wood and metal foundations are the most durable platform beds. Cheaper foundations are made with less durable materials and are susceptible to wear and tear. So you might have to replace your base sooner than you planned.


Platform beds come in a variety of style options and designs. For most shoppers, purchasing a platform bed is more cost-efficient since it can feature dressers and storage space.

Other platform beds are simplistic and sleek, making them a better option for individuals with limited bedroom space. Plus, they are an excellent choice for all mattress types, providing firm and sturdy support for the sleeper.

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