Bed Buying Guide

Buying a new bed can be a major investment. The average person spends a third of their life asleep, so it's important to choose a comfortable bed to promote quality, restful sleep. A new bed should last for years to come, so take your time to choose the most suitable bed for your individual needs.

Bed Sizes

This is usually the first decision you will make when selecting a new bed - depending on who will use the bed and the size of the room, you will probably already know whether you want a single bed, double bed or king-size bed.

Single Beds
Single beds are designed for one person. If space is very tight and / or you are buying a bed for a child or for a box room, consider a 'small single' bed - at 2' 6" wide this is the slimmest bed size you can get.

Standard single bed size: 3' wide x 6'3" long (90cm x 190cm). Small single bed size: 2' 6" wide x 6'3" long (75cm x 190cm).

Double Beds
Double beds are designed for two people. Standard double beds are 4' 6" wide by 6'3", however some beds are available in a slightly smaller size known as 'small double' which may be an option if you need a double bed for a smaller room. These are also a good option for teenagers and anyone needing a little more space than they would have in a single bed.

Standard double bed size: 4' 6" wide x 6'3" long (90cm x 190cm). Small double bed size: 4' wide x 6'3" long (75cm x 190cm).

King Size Beds
King Size beds are designed for two people, and ideal for larger framed people, offering a little more space than a double. King size beds (5' wide) and Super King size beds (6' wide) are extra large and ideal if you need more room to stretch out and have the available space.

Standard king size bed: 5' wide x 6'6" long (150cm x 200cm). Small double bed size: 6' wide x 6'6" long (180cm x 200cm).

It is worth noting that the above standard sizes refer to the mattress size and excludes any additional width and length created by the bedstead or divan - the final size will depend on style of bedstead and thickness of the materials used.

Bed Styles

Once you have decided which size of bed you would like to buy, your next decision is probably bed type: the most commonly available choices being bedstead or divan. This is mainly a question of personal taste and preference.

Beadsteads made of wood or metal are a more traditional option, with a distinct base and legs, allowing you to store items loosely under the bed.

Divans are solid unit, often covered with fabric, which is solid down to the floor, with no space. Divans often have built-in storage cupboards or drawers contained within the base, ideal for storing bedding and other miscellaneous items.

4 Poster Beds
4 poster beds are superb for adding a touch of luxurious style and character to a bedroom. The top frame which connects the 4 posters can be used to hang a curtain or net for extra privacy and to block out light, while the large space underneath the bed can be used for storage.

Our 4 poster beds are available in 2 styles; pine and whitewash. Larger pine beds are generally more suitable for adult bedrooms, while single size whitewash beds are fantastic for kid's bedrooms. Have a think about whether your room would suit a darker or a lighter bed frame before buying.

You also need to consider the size of your room before ordering a new 4 poster bed. For smaller rooms, a single size 4 poster bed might be more suitable, while larger rooms could house a double or even a king-size bed. Many of our 4 poster beds are available with or without a mattress.

TV Beds
For the ultimate home entertainment experience, chose a TV bed. These faux leather beauties have a raised section of the foot of the bed which can be used to mount a television, allowing you to watch your favourite TV shows and films in bed. You could even hook up a games console to the screen for extra entertainment options. Please do bear in mind that the television set cannot exceed 32 inches in screen size.

The mounted section at the end of the bed has been set at the perfect height and viewing angle, meaning you won't have to strain your neck or lay uncomfortably to get in the best position to view the screen. Simply lay back and enjoy. There's even a handy storage compartment located in the side rail, which is ideal for storing DVDs and games.

TV beds are available in 3 different sizes; single, double and king-size. Choose the single option for smaller rooms, such as a child's bedroom, or go for the double or king-size options for larger, adult bedrooms.


Choice of mattress is probably the most difficult part of selecting a new bed, and perhaps the most important factor in determining the comfort of your bed.

Open Coil Mattress
Open coil mattresses are the simplest, most basic type of mattress, consisting of rows of springs joined together by spiral wires, for a firm feel.

Pocket Sprung Mattress
Pocket sprung mattresses also feature springs like open coil mattresses, with the springs encased in fabric pockets for a more comfortable feel. There are also countless variations on pocket sprung mattresses where there are different areas within the mattress with varying springs - to create support where it is needed most, or to prevent roll-over.

Sprung Mattress
Sprung mattresses also have different kinds of filling between the springs, from foam and polyster fibres to cotton and latex. Latex is a natural product made from rubber and is hypo-allergenic. Its springy nature also makes it a very comfortable option, and can help relieve pressure.

Spring Free Mattress
Alternatively, choose a spring-free mattress for a softer bed. The most basic type of foam mattress is polyurethane foam, which is the cheapest and simplest type of non-sprung mattress.

Memory foam mattresses have a layer of foam which moulds temporarily around your body for an especially comfortable sleeping position, yet bounces back into its shape afterwards. Memory foam was originally developed by NASA to absorb G-force.

Bed & Mattress Care

To prolong the life of your mattress:

  • Discourage children from jumping on the bed as this can damage the interior and dramatically reduce its lifespan.
  • Depending on the type of mattress, you may be able to turn the mattress for even wear and tear. Some mattresses, such as those with memory foam or specially positioned springs, have a distinct up and down side and do not require turning.
  • Vaccuum your mattress from time to time to remove dust.
  • Refer to the manufacturers instructions for further guidance on cleaning.
  • You can also buy special mattress protectors and mattress toppers for extra comfort and to prolong the life of your mattress.
  • If you are buying a new bed, consider replacing your pillows at the same time. As with mattresses, pillows can also wear out.
  • Selecting comfortable pillows will also help you get a better nights sleep.

Childrens Beds, Toddler Beds & Bunk Beds

Junior beds, sometimes known as toddler beds, are designed to help children move from cot to bed. Typically a toddler bed is narrower and shorter in length than a standard single bed. They are usually a little lower in height, to enable little ones to easily climb in and to provide a lower drop in case they fall out of bed. Many toddler beds also have one or two side rails to help prevent falling.

  • Children's beds are also available in fun designs such as racing cars, or with their favourite TV character.
  • Bunk beds are a popular option for families where childrens' bedroom space is limited. Bunk beds are recommended for children aged 6 and above for safety reasons.
  • Another variation on bunk beds include midi-sleeper beds, which feature a high bed with combinations of storage space, cupboards, seating, shelves and desk areas underneath. Again, this is recommended for children aged 6 and over.

Occasional & Guest Beds

If you need to buy a bed for occasional use only, there are a number of options available.

  • Folding guest beds - as the name suggests these simply fold away for easy storage.
  • Inflatable guest beds - the ultimate space-saving idea - simply inflate when needed. When not in use, can be folded into a relatively small bundle for storage.
  • Sofa beds and futons - multi functional furniture which can be used as seating when not required to be used as a bed.