You’ve made the decision to save space in your home by choosing a Murphy bed. From here, you have some fun choices to make – selecting the style, the finish, the mattress and more.
You might be surprised to know that your mattress selection should be toward the beginning of the “choosing a Murphy bed” process.
Your choice of Murphy bed mattress will impact the frame you choose and its depth. Getting the right mattress selected early in the process will help you ensure you’re getting the perfect frame and mattress combination to equip your Murphy bed and suit your space-saving needs.
We’re sharing some of the top questions our showroom team receives about Murphy bed mattresses, so you can be ahead of the game when it comes time to shop on your own.
1. Can I use a regular mattress on my Murphy bed?
While you can choose a traditional mattress, it’s important to understand which features are most critical to picking the right mattress for your Murphy bed: thickness, support, durability and vertical storage capability.
Murphy bed mattresses are suspended vertically for much of their lives, so you want to ensure you have a mattress that’s designed to keep its shape in this unorthodox position, instead of one that may shift or sag over time.
Murphy beds also do not include box springs, which means they need to be supportive on their own. A gel or foam mattress can provide support when you’re using a mattress without a box spring.
2. Is it possible to have a comfortable Murphy bed mattress?
The Murphy bed mattresses we sell are equal to any traditional mattress. Consumers are not able to spot differences between traditional mattresses and those specifically designed for Murphy beds; the difference comes in the way Murphy bed mattresses are thoughtfully designed for vertical storage.
And from an anecdotal perspective, we have many clients who tell us they prefer sleeping on their Murphy bed versus the “traditional” bed in their homes!
3. What specific features should I look for to make sure I’m on the right track with my Murphy bed mattress purchase?
Ask your mattress seller whether their mattresses are engineered with prestressed foam. This pre-stressed foam will not change its shape or shift during use. That means it can easily endure its lifetime of vertically hanging without all the materials (and comfortable-ness!) sagging to the bottom of the mattress.
If you’re choosing an inner spring mattress, ask whether there’s a foam encasement on the springs. That will stabilize the mattress’s interior so that it can be conveniently stored upright. This style of mattress can also be more affordable, which makes it a bonus to know you’re buying something that’s affordable and that will last.
4. Is a Murphy bed mattress similar to a sofa bed mattress?
A sofa mattress is usually thin and sparse. It needs to be able to fold and fit in the sofa, so it’s not usually the best option for a restful night’s sleep.
Fortunately, a Murphy bed mattress doesn’t have to fold. It’s very similar to a traditional mattress in its size, thickness and appearance. The differences are not visible to the average buyer, as they’re different in the way the mattress is designed and constructed.
5. Do I need a box spring?
A box spring isn’t necessary for a Murphy bed. The bed needs to fold up into a small space without shifting and a box spring would defeat both of those purposes. However, because you’re not using a box spring, you also need to ensure you choose a mattress that doesn’t require a box spring.
Innerspring mattresses are typically designed with layers of cotton material and with coils that support the mattress’s shape when a person is resting on them. For a memory foam or gel mattress, you can use a solid surface underneath rather than a box spring. You’ve probably seen this with platform beds; Murphy beds are similar. When the bed folds out, the mattress rests effortlessly on the frame.
Regardless of the type of mattress you choose, our professional installers will adjust the springs to accommodate the weight of the mattress. We recommend buying your mattress at the same time that you buy your bed, so you can ensure they work well together. When you purchase directly from your Murphy bed seller, you’ll be able to ensure you’re getting a mattress that meets all the technical specifications AND is comfy at the same time!
6. Do I buy the same size mattress as I would for my normal bed?
Murphy bed mattresses are sold in the same standard sizes as traditional beds – twin, full, queen and king. You can work directly with your More Space Place designer to ensure that your mattress choice is an appropriate fit for your home and for the frame you’ve selected.
How to Choose the Right Mattress for your Murphy Bed
Choosing a mattress often comes down to specific taste. While we have some favorites among our mattress options (we’ll share those when you visit the showroom!), we also have a few questions that we recommend you consider while you’re making your choice.
1. Consider the user.
Do you know who will be using the Murphy bed most often? If it’s going to be used as someone’s everyday bed, the mattress type/style may be more important than if it’s slated to be a guest room bed for occasional use.
For example, if you’re using the Murphy bed in an Airbnb or vacation rental, you may be prepared to change out your mattress more frequently. You may not need a custom-designed super-plush mattress. Instead, it may make more sense to get an innerspring mattress that’s more affordable and more likely to appeal to the variety of guests who might be using it.
If you’re using it in your home, consider which guests may be visiting and using it most often. If you expect your mother-in-law, for example, to be the prime inhabitant of your guest room, get her preferences. You can even bring her to the showroom to evaluate options with you – we have many of mattress choices available on site so you can give them a test-drive!
2. Consider the style.
Change can be good, but make sure you have a good understanding of what changes you may be making when you switch your mattress. For example:
- Foam mattresses have been widely popularized with platform beds coming back in style. However, they can be less comfortable for people above certain weight ranges.
- Memory foam mattresses (also known as gel mattresses) in particular are noted for their comfort and luxuriousness. They can be an ideal choice for a Murphy bed but can also be more expensive than some of their counterparts.
- Some people opt for innerspring mattresses, since they’re familiar with using them on their traditional beds. However, it’s important to ensure they’re not too heavy, as their coils can add a lot of additional weight to the bed.
If there’s a certain type of mattress you love, you can probably find a similar one in our showroom. We have many customers who use a pillow-top mattress on their traditional bed and then fall equally in love with some of the luxurious pillow-top options we offer.
3. Consider the depth.
Most Murphy bed cabinets are either 15 or 20 inches deep. Your mattress choice will need to fit to those constraints to ensure you’re able to close it and actually take advantage of the extra space you’re creating!
If you want to choose a Murphy bed option that includes a headboard or has room to hang art or shelving within, you’ll need the deeper 20-inch cabinet, and you’ll need the mattress to conform to the space you have available.
All these measurements impact one another, so it’s critical to work with a designer, measure the spaces and evaluate the impact on your room’s overall design.
Selecting a mattress for your Murphy bed is a big decision. You don’t necessarily have to sleep on it, but you should visit our showroom and give the mattresses a test-rest, so you can see which ones appeal to you and which ones you and your guests would be happy to sleep on over time.