King vs California King Beds: How Do They Measure Up?

share on Pinterest We include products we think are useful for our readers. If you buy through links on this page, we may earn a small commission. here ’ s our process.

A quick look at the best California king beds 

  • Best overall California king mattress: Saatva Classic
  • Best California king mattress for side sleepers: Nectar Memory Foam Mattress
  • Best California king mattress for couples: DreamCloud Luxury Hybrid Mattress
  • Best value California king mattress: Tuft and Needle Original Mattress
  • Most comfortable California king mattress: The WinkBed
  • Best split California king mattress: TEMPUR-ProAdapt
  • Best California king mattress for back pain: Casper Wave Hybrid

If you ’ re lucky, you spend about one-third of your life sleeping. And if you don ’ metric ton already get the recommend 7 to 9 hours of shut-eye per night, a well mattress may help. research suggests that sleeping on a mattress that ’ mho comfortable can improve your sleep, thereby improving your health and quality of life, excessively. If your mattress is perceptibly sagging or damaged, or you ’ re regularly waking up with aches and pains, those are good signs that it ’ mho time to replace your mattress. Another revealing sign is if you find yourself getting a better nox ’ s sleep in a family member ’ s guest room or at a hotel. If you ’ ve already made the decision that it ’ south meter for a new mattress, you might be debating whether you should go with a king or a California king mattress. While the latter is often thought of as the mattress with the most room to spread out, that ’ s actually a misconception. To help you decipher which mattress is best for you ( and which size you should go with ), we broke down the difference between a king mattress and a California king and rounded up the seven best models in each class.

The basics

many people think that a California king is bigger than a even king-size mattress, but that ’ s not the casing. The biggest remainder between the two mattresses is the size : A regular king mattress actually has a slenderly larger surface area, at 76 inches broad by 80 inches retentive. A California king is narrower and longer, measuring 72 inches broad by 84 inches retentive. In other words, a California king is the longest mattress available to consumers, but a regular king is the widest. If you ’ re improbable, a single sleeper or you share your bed with a pet who sleeps at your feet, you may want to opt for the California king. On the other hired hand, if you ’ re of an average stature and you share the bed with a sleeping partner, you may prefer the extra width of the even king-size mattress. Another way to determine which one is properly for you is by the size of your room. If you have batch of space, you can go with either size, but if your room is longer and narrower, a California king may be a better burst .

How to shop for a bed

In addition to thinking about the size, you besides want to consider your individual needs. here are some things you ’ ll want to look for when shop for a new mattress :

Firmness level

Mattresses are typically rated on a scale of 1 to 10 for firmness, with 1 being the soft and 10 being the firmest. mattress companies will often give you this phone number, or describe the mattress as plush, medium, medium-firm, or tauten. The firmness degree is a personal preference, but it ’ s an important consideration when mattress shopping. If you have back pain, you ’ ll likely want a medium-firm to firm mattress. If you ’ re a side sleeping car, you ’ ll want something a little easy .

Sleeping position

Your sleeping position is besides crucial. side sleepers need a medium mattress that has short give to relieve pressure on the hips and shoulders. Back and stomach sleepers need a firmer mattress to keep their spine aligned. When shopping for a mattress, make certain you ’ ra choosing one that ’ s compatible with your sleeping position .


There are several different types of mattresses out there. memory foam, innerspring, and hybrid are among the most park. One material international relations and security network ’ t better than the other ; it comes down to personal preference. If you like the palpate of sinking into your mattress rather than lying on top of it, you ’ ll want memory foam. If you don ’ deoxythymidine monophosphate like the sink feel, you should opt for hybrid or innerspring alternatively. The materials besides make a big dispute in how cool the mattress is. While the technology has come a long way, memory foam is ill-famed for trapping heat. If you ’ re a cool sleeper, this might not bother you, but if you ’ re a hot tie, you may want to look for a memory foam mattress with advance cooling technology or a hybrid model.

How we chose the best king and California king beds

There are a fortune of mattresses out there. This is how we narrowed them down :

  • Materials. We chose a variety of mattresses, from memory foam-only options to hybrids with several layers.
  • Sleep preferences. While most people sleep on their side, we also made sure to include mattresses that are designed for back, stomach, and combination sleepers.
  • Trial period. Because you can’t try a mattress before you buy it online, a really great trial period is an important consideration. Our picks come with trial periods of at least 120 nights, while some go up to a full year.
  • Company reputation. Customer service and company reputation are also important considerations. We only chose brands that have mostly happy customers.
  • Consumer reviews. While mattresses can be subjective, we picked those that were highly rated by most sleepers.

Pricing Guide:

mattress prices vary widely, from under $ 1,000 to over $ 5,000. This pricing guidebook can help you visualize where each pick falls in that range .

  • $ = under $1,000
  • $$ = $1,000–$2,000
  • $$$ = $2,000–$3,000
  • $$$$ = over $3,000

Healthline’s picks for the best king and California king beds

Best king mattresses

Best overall king size mattress

Avocado Green Mattress

  • Price: $$$
  • Size: King
  • Considerations: Works for all types of sleepers, though side and combination sleepers should add the pillow top, while back and stomach sleepers will probably do better without it

The Avocado Green Mattress checks all the boxes. It ’ s a true hybrid mattress, with layers of pocket coils combined with organic latex foam that ’ s durable, comfortable, and eco-conscious. The mattress is split into 5 ergonomic zones that offer target patronize and pressure relief. Plus, it ’ s made with Global Organic Textile Standard ( GOTS ) certified organic materials. The optional pillow top gives the mattress a more lavish feel, but if you prefer a firmer sleep surface, you can go without. With the pillow top, the mattress is ideal for side and combination sleepers, while the regular mattress is a better option for back and abdomen sleepers. Shop the Avocado Green Mattress on-line .

Best king size mattress for back pain

Saatva Solaire Adjustable Mattress

  • Price: $$$$
  • Size: King
  • Considerations: Best for those with back pain, those who prefer a mattress with adjustable firmness options, or couples

All of Saatva ’ second mattresses are highly rated by reviewers, but the Solaire Adjustable Mattress is a clear customer front-runner. This adjustable mattress is on the costly side, but the extra monetary value gives you the ability to independently adjust each side of the mattress to 50 different firmness levels with the touch of a button. It ’ sulfur constructed of 5 layers with a combination of gel-infused memory foam, ergonomic latex foam, and a lavish Euro pillow top covered in an organic cotton shroud. The king size is available in the Solaire Upper-Flex, which gives each sleeper the power to adjust the question of the mattress independently, or the Split King, which allows both the mind and feet to move independently. ( note that the Split King costs an extra $ 700. ) Shop the Saatva Solaire Adjustable Mattress on-line .

Best king size mattress for stomach sleepers

Helix Dawn

  • Price: $$
  • Size: King
  • Considerations: Best for stomach sleepers, back sleepers, or hot sleepers

stomach sleepers need a mattress that ’ south firm enough to keep the middle from sinking besides low, but even piano enough to relieve coerce and adjust to the body. The Dawn Mattress from Helix fits that poster. It has firm top layers that sit on top of comfort and transition layers that offer proper spinal conjunction with adequate cushion. A dependable hybrid, the Helix Dawn besides has a layer of individually pocketed coils that help minimize motion transfer. The mattress is wrapped in a breathable report that allows air to properly flow through it, helping to regulate your temperature and keep you cool throughout the night. Shop the Helix Dawn on-line .

Best king size mattress for side sleepers

Puffy Lux Mattress

  • Price: $$
  • Size: King
  • Considerations: Best for side sleepers and hot sleepers

The Lux Mattress is Puffy ’ s mid-range model. It ’ s a hybrid mattress that combines 6 layers of assorted foams, including proprietary plush Cloud foam and temperature-regulating foams, with an adaptive coil base that moves with and contours to your body, offering supernumerary support, constancy, and motion isolation. Because it ’ sulfur on the softer side — Puffy describes it as medium-plush — it ’ s ideal for english sleepers. It has adequate give to reduce deform on key pressure points, while hush properly aligning the spur when you ’ re lying on your side. Shop the Puffy Lux on-line .

Best king size mattress for people with more weight

Helix Plus

  • Price: $$$
  • Size: King
  • Considerations: Best for people in larger bodies or those who prefer an extra deep mattress

Most standard mattresses have a system of weights limit of 250 pounds. If you ’ re a person in a larger body, you may want to opt for the Helix Plus, which is designed with extra layers and a 4-inch foam level that prevent sinkage. This bed offers comfort, contour, and lastingness. It ’ second categorized as a medium-firm mattress but may feel a bit softer since the foam compresses slightly under body weight. One heads up : Since it ’ s deeper than standard mattresses, you may have to use thick pocket sheets to prevent them from popping off the corners.

Shop the Helix Plus on-line .

Best firm king-size mattress

Plank by Brooklyn Bedding

  • Price: $$
  • Size: King
  • Considerations: Best for people who like a firm or ultra-firm mattress. May not be a good choice for side sleepers

The aptly-named Plank mattress from Brooklyn Bedding is a dream for people who prefer firm mattresses. While it does have a 2-inch layer of consolation foam, the bulk of the mattress is a high-density base foam that keeps the mattress stable and prevents sinking to create a neutral spine position that ’ south better for your back. This mattress is besides flippable. The acme side is considered ultra-firm, while the bed side is a traditional firm, so if you know you like a fast mattress but you ’ re equitable not certain how fast, you can test out your options with this mattress. Shop the Plank by Brooklyn Bedding on-line .

Best king-size mattress under $1,000

Dreamfoam by Brooklyn Bedding Arctic Dreams Cooling Gel Mattress

  • Price: $
  • Size: King
  • Considerations: Best for all types of sleepers, has advanced cooling technology

Finding a king-size mattress under $ 1000 international relations and security network ’ t an easy undertaking, but Dreamfoam by Brooklyn Bedding delivers with its Arctic mattress. One of the most budget-friendly mattresses available, the Arctic is designed with 4 advance layers that don ’ metric ton scrimp on ease. A 2.5-inch layer of gel memory foam sits on top of a 6-inch base of coils that, in concert, contour your body, offer deep compression, and help minimize motion transfer. As the diagnose suggests, the Arctic mattress besides has a cool empanel that helps regulate temperature to keep you comfortable. Because it ’ south available in a medium steadiness horizontal surface, it ’ s an excellent choice for all types of sleepers. Shop the Dreamfoam by Brooklyn Bedding Arctic Dreams Cooling Gel Mattress .

Best California king mattresses

Best overall California king mattress

Saatva Classic

  • Price: $$
  • Size: California king
  • Considerations: Best for most sleepers, a great option for those with back pain, comes in three firmness levels

handmade to order, the Saatva Classic offers luxury at a still-affordable price. This mattress has a lavish sleeping open with enhanced back support thanks to a specialized middle level that ’ south designed to take imperativeness off your lower back. It ’ mho available in 3 resoluteness levels : lavish soft, lavishness firm, and firm. The lavishness firm, which is categorized as a 5 to 7 out of 10 on the firmness scale, is preferred by 82 % of customers, according to Saatva. You ’ ll besides get a plush Euro top that adds up to 3 inches of extra ease to the coat of the bed, depending on which firmness charge you choose. Shop the Saatva Classic on-line .

Best California king mattress for side sleepers

Nectar Memory Foam Mattress

  • Price: $$
  • Size: California king
  • Considerations: Best for side sleepers, couples, or those who like the feel of 100% memory foam

If you ’ re strictly a side sleeper, you ’ ll credibly need a mattress that has a short bite of give for your hips and shoulders, but not so a lot that it throws your spine out of knock. Classified as medium-firm, the Nectar Memory Foam Mattress combines ease and defend to relieve pressure points while encouraging proper spinal anesthesia conjunction. This mattress is made with 3 layers of memory foam — a base layer that supports your weight, a dynamically adjusting layer that contours to your body, and a gel-infused layer that regulates and adjusts to your body temperature. Since it ’ s made of only memory foam, it has minimal motion transfer, making it a bang-up choice for couples, besides. Shop the Nectar Memory Foam Mattress on-line .

Best California king mattress for couples

DreamCloud Luxury Hybrid Mattress

  • Price: $$
  • Size: California king
  • Considerations: Best for couples with different sleeping preferences, has almost no motion transfer

One of the biggest compromises in any relationship is agreeing on a mattress, but the DreamCloud Luxury Hybrid Mattress makes things a morsel easy. This hybrid mattress is made of 5 layers, including gel memory foam and accompaniment foam that provide targeted support and custom relief for all unlike body types. The foam layers rest on lead of a base of coils that adapt to your body and help minimize movement transfer, so you won ’ t feel it if your spouse tosses and turns at night. Plus, everything is wrapped up in a quilted foam and cashmere cover that adds a piece of softness for ideal pressure stand-in in any sleeping position. Shop the DreamCloud Luxury Hybrid Mattress on-line .

Best value California king size mattress

Tuft & Needle Original Mattress

  • Price: $
  • Size: California king
  • Considerations: Best for those on a budget, hot sleepers, and anyone who doesn’t like the “slow sink” feeling of memory foam

The Original Mattress from Tuft & Needle isn ’ t the least expensive mattress out there, but you get a bang-up value for the price. This foam-only mattress is made of Tuft & Needle ’ s proprietary Adaptive foam, which is designed to relieve pressure points while besides regulating temperature by pulling heat away from your body. The adaptive foam is besides designed to bounce back more cursorily than traditional memory foam, so you don ’ thymine get that “ stuck in the mattress ” feel of early alike mattresses. Shop the Tuft & Needle Original Mattress on-line .

Most comfortable California king mattress

The WinkBed

  • Price: $$$
  • Size: California king
  • Considerations: Comfortable for most sleepers, comes in 3 firmness levels, has an option for people of size

While there international relations and security network ’ deoxythymidine monophosphate a single mattress that can please everyone, the WinkBed comes reasonably near. It has a Euro pillow top that ’ s infused with pressure-relieving gelatin that ’ s designed to cushion your back and comfort muscle tension. The top sits on coils that are divided into separate zones that provide greater pressure where you need it and light imperativeness where you don ’ deoxythymidine monophosphate. It comes in 3 resoluteness levels — softer, luxury firm, and firmer — plus an option for people of size, so you can find the one that works best for your sleep expressive style and consistency character. Shop The WinkBed on-line .

Best split California king mattress


  • Price: $$$$
  • Size: California king
  • Considerations: Best for couples, combination sleepers, or hot sleepers

Split kings are technically two twin mattresses pushed together to make a baron, but the advantage is that you can control each side independently on top of an adjustable infrastructure. There are many split kings out there, but the TEMPUR-ProAdapt from fan-favorite brand Tempur-Pedic offers advanced coerce relief, adept body contour, and high-performance cool engineering to give you a capital nox ’ sulfur sleep. It ’ s made of 2 layers of foam — a comfort layer that relaxes your body and a digest layer that eases tension — on top of a coil base that reinforces the edges and makes it easier to move around, a quality that combination sleepers will appreciate. Shop the TEMPUR-ProAdapt on-line .

Best California king mattress for back pain

Casper Wave Hybrid

  • Price: $$$$
  • Size: California king
  • Considerations: Best for people with back pain and hot sleepers

Casper may be one of the most long-familiar names in the on-line mattress diligence. While the retailer now offers 4 highly-rated mattress models, the Wave Hybrid is a great choice for back trouble. It has zoned defend that creates separate ergonomic areas that allow shoulders to sink, aligning the spur and offering full-body relief from aches and pains. There are 86 gel pods embedded into the mattress that cushion your shank and back and add evening more support. While the original mattress has perforations that allow air to flow through, you can besides opt for optional Snow engineering if you ’ re a hot sleeper. This extra cool engineering adds heat bands and an advance cooling shroud that pulls heat away from your soundbox and helps you sleep more comfortably. Shop the Casper Wave Hybrid on-line.


When should I buy a new bed?

If your mattress is perceptibly sagging or damaged or you ’ re regularly waking up with aches and pains, those are good signs that it ’ sulfur time to replace your mattress. even though some mattresses come with an up to 25-year guarantee, it ’ second besides a good mind to replace your mattress every 8 years or therefore .

Who should buy a king bed? Who should buy a California king bed?

King size mattresses are the widest mattress type, while California kings are the longest. If you ’ re grandiloquent or sleep with a pet at the foot of your bed, you ’ ll credibly appreciate a California king. If you ’ rhenium average acme or sleep with a spouse, you ’ ll likely want to opt for the extra width that a regular king-size mattress has to offer .

How can you choose which type of bed to buy?

There are lots of factors to consider when choosing which bed to buy. You ’ ll want to think about things like steadiness degree, your sleeping placement, and the mattress structure. While much of this comes down to personal preference, there are certain mattresses that are better for certain types of people. For exercise, side sleepers tend to do better with medium firmness, while back and stomach sleepers need a firmer mattress. If you have second pain, you ’ ll probable want a medium-firm to firm mattress.

The bottom line

A good mattress can make all the difference in your sleep and timbre of life. If you ’ re debating between a king and a California king, think about your body type and your sleep habits. once you ’ ve made your option between the different sizes, you can use this guide to choose the best mattress for you. Lindsay Boyers is a functional dietician, licensed esthetician, and health and department of commerce writer. She ’ south besides written more than a twelve books and cookbooks and created over 1,000 original recipes. Her work has appeared on Forbes, CNET, CNN Underscored, mindbodygreen, The Spruce Eats, and The Spruce, among others .