16 Best Bed Frames to Level Up Your Bedroom Setup in 2023
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The best bed frames are, quite literally, the foundation of a good night’s sleep. Even sleeping on the cushiest, most supportive mattress on the planet won’t mean a thing if the structure propping it up is slightly off-kilter or sagging in the middle. If it’s not constructed right, the wrong bed frame can get you a lot closer to the floor than you ever intended (and not, like, in an intentional way), or sleeping to a soundtrack of creaks and squeaks every time you so much as shuffle to one side.
Though the bed frames you can find online have come a long way, shopping for one is still a big leap of faith and a major investment. As pieces of furniture that you’ll likely spend years of your life parking your mattress on, bed frames start in the hundreds of dollars and climb into the thousands. It’s only once you’ve muscled that heavy box over the entryway of your home, assembled it and settled your mattress on top of it, then truly lived with it for a few days that you really start to suss out all the kinks. Nothing prepares you for the moment you throw down a rent check on an expensive bespoke bed frame only to find out that it creaks wildly after a bout of vigorous activity, and has a final sale return policy that doesn’t permit second thoughts. So, how do you go about finding a keeper?
The Best Bed Frames, at a Glance
Want to skip right to the good part? Read on about our favorite bed frames of all styles, below.
- The Best Bed Frame For Most People: Thuma, $1,095
- The Best Storage Bed Frame: EQ3 “Marcel”,
- The Best Upholstered Bed Frame: Interior Define Kaleb, $1,945
- The Best Modern Platform Bed Frame: Sapling Studio, $999
- The Best Sleigh-Style Bed Frame: CB2 Drommen, $1,099
- The Best Metal Bed Frame: Olee,
- The Bed Frame That’ll Make Your Home Feel Like an AD Spread: Sarah Ellison “Yoko”, $5,995
- The Best Budget Platform Bed Frame: Helix, $649
How to source a decent bed frame
It goes without saying that your bed frames should be engineered to easily support the weight of your body, your mattress, and potentially a box spring—while aligning with your budget and your tastes. Savvy shoppers know that it requires research to wade through all the frames out there that tend to be more form than function, or the many options swathed in ’80s upholstery or cheap wood veneers. If you think that cheap platform bed from a brand you’ve never heard of is too good to be true, it probably is! We’d recommend scanning genuine customer reviews from places like Trustpilot (hell, even Reddit) before placing an order—just to get a sense of what the delivery and returns process is like, and whether the brand’s customer service is a ghost town, or just an outright scam. If you don’t mind scoring something secondhand, it’s never a bad idea to run a quick keyword search on your local Craigslist to see if your bed pops up at a discount.
Types of bed frames
It’s also worth considering what options match your lifestyle and budget. Generally speaking, the most affordable bed frames are going to be metal. Solid metal, must be a solid investment, you may think! Well, sorta. Because metal mattresses are designed for portability and deconstruction, they often skimp on bed slats and instead fit your mattress inside the metal frame itself, with just a support bar in the middle for propping up the heavy weight of your mattress. Without slats, they usually require a separate bed foundation, too, as a flat base. Other downsides: That metal beam on metal beam traction means these are often big ol’ clankers, just one loose screw away from squeaking away anytime you so much as cough. Still, if you’re a young renter with low expectations and the tendency to make moves every year or so, not having to put down roots with a 300-pound solid wood bed frame is actually pretty convenient.
On the other end of the spectrum, wooden bed frames are the sturdiest. Find yourself a handsome birch or pine wood, and you’re setting yourself up for some solid construction that’ll last you many years. They tend to be much heavier and more expensive than a deconstructible metal frame, so they’re probably something you’ll want to buy once you’ve settled into a place. And FYI: Sometimes brands like to cut corners by using engineered wood, or MDF, which is basically a cheaper, less-natural-looking form of wood that’s made up of wood fibers and a veneer on top. It’s not going to look as nice, but it’ll also shave some money off your total cost if you don’t care about that sort of thing.
Other options are upholstered beds swathed in fabrics, which can look pretty dated depending on the material, but provide the softest-looking finish if you’re jonesing for something cozier than an industrial metal frame. And though the most popular style du jour is a no-frills, Japanese-style platform bed, you can also find plenty of models that come with headboards and storage, or at least the option to add them on.
Another thing to keep in mind is the way the slats, the joinery, or the frame itself has been engineered, because this will usually tell you something about what kind of support you’ll get. In most instances the slats are secured into the frame itself, which helps keep everything locked down, but can also cause creaking as the slats move against the frame. In others, slats fit into designated slots (and aren’t attached to the frame itself), or don’t use slats at all (like with the Floyd). It’s really hard to get a sense of how well-designed it is, and how the support system is going to work for your weight and bed setup, without trying it firsthand.
That being said, for this listing of some of our favorite bed frames out there, we haven’t had the luxury of testing all these firsthand. But we really think that finding something affordable and stylish should be your top priority, and from there looking for an abundance of flexibility for testing it out first-hand in your own home. All of the options that we’ve listed below have a generous return policy that allows you to personally sleep on it, perform a creak test, and get a feel for whether a couple nights on it will cause the bed slats to cave in like a sinkhole in the middle. Many of these have upstanding warranties, too, in case something gets wobbly over time.
If you’ve been coasting on the mattress and box spring life, it’s high time you upgraded to something a little more grownup. Even if you prefer the look of a low-to-the-ground tatami futon bed, plenty of these frames will get you the same look without having you sleeping directly on the ground. Without further ado, the best bed frames to level up your sleep setup.
The Best Bed Frame For Most People: Thuma
This GQ Home Award-winning Thuma bed frame is one of those rare breeds that occupies all three categories of “high quality,” “decently affordable,” and “easy to put together.” It’s why it’s our top pick for an overachieving, mid-budget option. Besides its well-stained solid wood construction and sensible fabric pillowboard (which comes in a few different color options for both), it’s also a pretty reasonable price. For people tempted to outsource this construction job to a Taskrabbit, the Thuma also assembles as easily as promised—it took one GQ staffer about 30 minutes to put the bed together himself, no galaxy brain maneuvering required. Its frame and double-strength slats lock into place to prevent them moving (and squeaking) about, and the bed itself features solid, repurposed wood, plus cork padding underneath, so it doesn’t scrape your bedroom floor. The finished product is motion-stabilized, thoughtfully designed, and exceedingly sturdy.
The Best Storage Bed Frame: EQ3 “Marcel”
If you’ve ever wanted a bed that feels a little like a souped-up convertible, EQ3’s ultramodern “Marcel” bed is the one to consider for your current life crisis. Instead of a cupboard-style system that rolls out storage from underneath, the Marcel physically lifts up like a Murphy bed for stuffing all of your unmentionables and linens where the sun don’t shine. The design is so ingenious we recognized it in our Home Awards this year, with the only ding here being that it’s made from a composite core wood, finished off with a varnish (not fully solid wood).
The Best Upholstered Bed Frame: Interior Define Kaleb
The makers of our favorite sleeper sofa offer many of the same selling points: namely, dozens and dozens of swatches to choose from, whether you want your bed swathed in antimicrobial chenille, some strapping tweed, or rich velvet. Though upholstered beds tend to look extremely dated, like something your aunt might own in her ‘80s-era “shabby chic” home, this one feels plenty modern with its rounded edges and the velvety frame that conceals hidden legs and hides a sturdy slat system in its innards. Everything’s infinitely customizable, with a 60-day return policy that’ll give you some time to decide if it’s a keeper or not (it is).
The Best Modern Platform Bed Frame: Sapling Studio
This writer recently overcame a years’ long odyssey for the perfect bed frame after scouting this one on Etsy. Made by a small woodworking business out in Denver called Sapling Studio, the bed uses a simple jigsaw construction to lock planks into place for an elegant Japanese slash Scandi-style effect. The two main pieces, and all the adjoining support pieces that form the base of the bed, fit together via perfectly whittled-out grooves to prevent the angled beams from moving around. Everything came together in about 10 minutes without any head-scratching involved, and after a couple nights sleeping on this thing, we can report that there’s no squeaking or creaking here. For small apartment-dwellers, the bed is also high enough off the ground to offer plenty of room for storing giant underbed containers and boxes under there.
The Best Sleigh-Style Bed Frame: CB2 Drommen
Sleigh beds were big in the, uh, 19th century, but there are some modern iterations that don’t feel like they time-traveled from someone’s country estate. The CB2 Drommen is just one: a best-seller for the brand, made from angled acacia wood. Our tester loved the soft linen material of this bed’s upholstered headboard (which is surprisingly dust- and dirt-resistant after years of use), the squeakless design, and high-quality frame for the price point. Plus, the bed doesn’t use any slats at all, which equals stunningly easy assembly. Simply slide your bed on top! Because of the sloping headboard, its length is a little wider than average, so we’d recommend it to someone with ample space.
The Best Metal Bed Frame: Olee Sleep
Olee’s steel bed frame is one of the odd metal options we’ve seen that actually has a full steel slat system rather than a measly support bar holding the thing together. That means it’s more stable, and less likely to make you feel like you are emerging from a sinkhole every morning. The good shoppers over at Amazon don’t often unanimously agree, but they do on this point: This thing is sturdy as hell, and plenty convenient considering that it comes with all the tools you need to assemble and tighten it.
The Bed Frame That’ll Make Your Home Feel Like an AD Spread: Sarah Ellison “Yoko”
Australian designer Sarah Ellison’s known for her dreamy furniture that’s all soft curves, warm woods, puffy textures, and earth tones. Replacing traditional legs with spherical orbs, her spacey Yoko bed frame makes the bed look like it’s hovering somewhere above the ground, supported by a large slatless plank. Now you can finally tell them, “This is where the magic happens,” and mean it.
The Best Budget Platform Bed Frame: Helix
Platform bed purists need look no further than this no-frills, Scandinavian-style birch wood frame from Helix that’s everything you want—a well-made throne for your cushy mattress—and nothing you don’t. There’s no option to add on a headboard or anything, but for just under $600, you don’t need to know much else except that it’s sturdy, completely inoffensive style-wise, and offers a 100-night sleep trial (and returns) if you’re not absolutely loving it. Plus, putting it together doesn’t require any tools—just a little free time.
8 Other Bed Frames We Like
If you’re online in any sense, it’s probably algorithmically unlikely that you’ve missed Floyd’s elegant, low-lying platform bed. The jewel of Instagram’s targeted ads owes a lot to the minimalist Donald Judd aesthetic: It uses a slatless, screwless design relying on a couple of wooden planks that are held together by fabric support straps and attached to some steel legs on the bottom. It’s a heck of a lot easier to assemble than any old IKEA step-by-step. Reviews online vary—some point to peeling wood to and sometimes flimsy support straps—but if you’re looking for a stylish low-to-the-ground option to take with you to your next five apartments, it’s hard to imagine a superior combination of aesthetics, ease, and price (even if the Floyd isn’t a slam dunk A+ in any of those lone categories). The company now offers an option to buy your own wood and assemble it with Floyd hardware, but if you’re determined to buy a complete bed set-up, we’d just recommend scouting to see if someone’s selling a second-hand version online. Or, at least buying one when it’s on sale.
Burrow’s more well-known for its couches-in-a-box than its sleeping arrangements, but the brand’s sturdy sofas show it knows a thing or two about a good foundation. And the Chorus bed takes the right cues. With its low-lying frame—constructed from solid hardwoods and anchored by Japanese-inspired joinery—plus ‘grammable chubby legs (aw!), it’ll earn you some style chops and a trustworthy throne for your bed and bod. It’s just the thing if you want something low-stress, low-mess, and zero excess. If you did want to dress it up a little, there’s even the option to tack on a fabric or wood headboard.
The boucle trend is still going strong, and if you’re the type to throw caution to the wind with a pristine white fabric and a Tide pen, the Diana might be calling your name. The curvy slopes of the upholstery resemble a cloud, with some solid oak legs keeping it down to earth. It’s definitely going to be harder to clean, but might be just thing you need to dress up that barely frequented spare bedroom.
If budget isn’t a concern, design studio Sun at Six makes one of the best low-profile options with a built-in headboard. The studio is a family affair, guided by the trade of traditional Chinese joinery, and using oil-finished white ash that resists stains and breaks down for flat-pack shipping. Combined with a frame that nestles your bed inside it like a throne, the chubby, rounded legs give it a fun childlike touch. There’s even an option to buy it in a black finish directly from the site if you’d prefer something a little vibier.
Designer Jenni Kayne also makes a solid upholstered bed with a headboard that doesn’t scream “period piece!!” The frame is kiln-dried to last you for years and years, and it perfectly accommodates a low-profile mattress for a soft, elegant look. Choose from a range of muted earth tones (in linen or boucle) to set your bedroom setup to “chill,” with only downside here being that the bed is final sale only—so no second thoughts.
For people on a shoe-string budget, Tuft & Needle offers a durable steel bedframe (the traditional support bar kind) for stacking up a box spring and a mattress on top. It’s designed to fit together like puzzle pieces, without any tools needed for assembly, and the reviews seem to be mostly positive. It’s a little pricier than the Olee above (and slatless), which is why that one’s still our top choice. But if you’re already a Tuft & Needle fan, it might be worth going in on some bedding and a bed frame all at once.
Brooklyn-based design studio Akron Street (makers of one of our favorite desks) is always a winner for modern, well-made furniture pieces that won’t look like everyone else’s Ikea collections or Alvar Aalto knockoffs. It makes two beds—both platform-style—but we like the extra under-bed storage options on this one that allow you to squirrel away sweaters and bedding in its innards without having to worry about moths attacking your precious cashmere, or dust bunnies building up under the bed. The only downsides are a less forgiving return policy. If it’s not brand new in the box, buddy, you’re stuck with it!
The ‘Zon might not be your first choice for a direct-to-doorstep bed frame, but the retail powers that be do stock a mean platform bed from the likes of KD Frames, a woodworking company based in Athens, Georgia (go dawgs). The Scandi-style design works with kiln-baked woods that are perfectly low-profile and budget-friendly for a starter apartment. There’s even the option to tack on separate storage drawers to give yourself more places to conceal your mess.
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