Finding the right bed can be tricky!

Choosing a Bed That's Right for You

by Anthony Rhyne

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Choosing a bed to match your every day sleeping needs can be tough, especially if you're on a tight budget, but as something you will use a large portion of your life, the initial investment might be worth it to make sure you've chosen correctly. Below are a few options for all ranges and styles of living and, more importantly, for sleeping.

The Standard Box Spring

Box spring beds are the most commonly used type of bed, and they come in all manner of size and price. Traditionally they include a mattress laid on top of a box of equal size, containing several hundred springs (hence the name) that expand and contract to your movements. They offer an average amount of comfort, and run an average cost as a result. Because of the multiple layers, they do take up quite a bit of room, are heavy and inefficient to move around, and lack a whole lot of variety in terms of storage space. But as they are the standard, and not terribly expensive, finding a set that fits you shouldn't be difficult.

Platform Options

Platform mattresses are firm and exchange comfort for size and a more proper sleeping posture. Instead of having a box spring to support your mattress, a structure is already in place that holds up the entire thing. That also frees up space underneath for various containers and drawers; they are appropriately nicknamed the "storage bed." Platforms will probably run you less than a standard box spring, but they're also not easy to rearrange. On the plus side, because of the generally wooden structure that supports your mattress, platform beds are easier to find custom made.

The Waterbed

The waterbed is the ultimate in comfort, as the liquid mattress shifts and swirls around your body on command. They can also be relaxing and soothing, being rocked to sleep by the motion of waves beneath you. The big worry from most customers looking to buy a waterbed is the obvious potential for property damage. Anyone who thinks about owning a waterbed at any point has the question "What if it pops?" run through his head. Rest assured, if incidents like that happened frequently, they wouldn't still be a popular choice in the industry. However, along with the comfort the water provides comes a steep price tag. And all that weight makes a waterbed near impossible to move once installed.

Memory Foam

Some argue that memory foam is actually the most comfortable mattress material out there, form-fitting and wrapping around you like a blanket. The technology for that foam has come a long way since its inception, and there are any number of options available to you. As they are a popular item right now, stiff competition has driven down the costs, and you can easily find an option for you at a reasonable price. However, unless you want to use that foam mattress to sleep on the floor, you're still going to want some sort of box or second level mattress to support it. The good news is that they're generally light as a feather and take very little effort to move around.

Finding a mattress is easy. Finding one that fits your desired comfort and living space can be a bit more tricky. Hopefully these options helped narrow that decision down!

Anthony Rhyne writes for furniture blogs where you can read about platform beds.

Take the Next Step:

  • Now that you have a comfy new bed, maybe it's time to give your bedroom a facelift. Find great, frugal bedroom decorating ideas in The Dollar Stretcher Library .

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