The Best Mattress for a Slat Bed


Choosing a mattress can be overwhelming. Many styles of bed frames employ the use of slats instead of the traditional box spring. There are two kinds of slats: fixed and flexible. Flexible slats attach to pivoting holders, allowing some give, while fixed slats attach directly to the bed frame. Make sure you know which kind of slat you have before buying your mattress.There are several varieties of mattresses well suited for a slat bed.

Inner Spring Mattress

  • According to's mattress buying guide, inner-spring mattresses work best with fixed slats. Inner spring mattresses are also the most popular and generally least expensive mattress option. When considering an inner spring mattress, be sure to find out how many coils it has. A full-size mattress should have at least 300 coils, a queen-size at least 375 and a king-size at least 450. When testing out a new mattress, be sure to spend at least 15 minutes lying on it. Inner-spring mattresses start at around $200, and luxury models can cost several thousand dollars. As long as you avoid the very cheapest models, your mattress should be durable and have a long life.

Memory Foam Mattress

  • Memory Foam mattresses have become increasingly popular over the past few years. Since the introduction of the Tempur-pedic mattress in the early 1990s, many other companies have begun producing memory foam mattresses. Memory foam is ideally suited for flexible slat beds. Many people like memory foam mattresses because they conform to the shape of your body, eliminating pressure points that can sometimes be a problem with traditional spring mattresses. When purchasing a memory foam mattress, be sure to consider the density of the foam. According to, the ideal density is between 5 and 6 lbs. Memory foam mattresses tend to be more expensive than traditional mattresses, with prices starting at roughly $1,000.

Futon Mattress

  • A futon mattress is an excellent option for someone on a budget or someone who simply enjoys a very firm mattress. Slats, either flexible or firm, provide the proper support for a futon and is the ideal base for this type of mattress. According to's article, "Mattresses: What to Look For," experts recommend that your futon be no less than 6 inches thick and made of 100 percent cotton. On average, prices for quality futons start at around $100 but can exceed $300 for higher-end models.

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