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Mattress Ratings > Futon Bed Reviews
Based on 1,478 Actual Owner Experiences
THE GOOD: In addition to being inexpensive, futon mattresses tend to have above-average owner satisfaction when used occasionally or temporarily. They can be both a bed and a sofa when placed on a futon frame. They are popular among college students, small-apartment dwellers or anyone seeking convertible furniture.
THE BAD: Their durability / longevity is average at best (especially when used regularly). Initial odor is the top owner complaint. Some models may be too thin / firm for some.
THE COMPETITION: Temporary-use air beds as well as low-priced memory foam mattresses and low-priced innerspring beds (especially Ikea mattresses) often compete with futon mattresses. See the mattress type comparison for more on how futons compare to other bed types.
The table below rates and compares the three main futon mattress types:
|Inner-spring||Foam / Cotton||Cotton||comment|
|Owner satisfaction||b-||c+||c||Futon mattresses overall as a group have 74% owner satisfaction. ( )|
|Durability / longevity||c||d+||d||Durability is below average compared to most other mattress types. Innerspring futon mattresses likely last somewhat longer than the other varieties. Expect a 2-4 year lifespan with regular use.|
|Price / Affordable||a-||a||a+||$80-$900 is the range for a full-size futon mattress (not including frame). The average price paid is about $171.|
|Less pain / pressure points||c||c-||d||Reduced pain (including back pain) and decreased pressure points are reported by less than 10% of owners. 15% of owners report that their futon causes pain, usually due to high firmness / lack of thickness and lumpiness.|
|Thickness variety||b||c||d||Innerspring futon beds are often available in thickness ranging from 5 to 12 inches, while the other varieties tend to have less thickness variety.|
|Firmness variety||c+||c-||d-||Most futon mattresses tend to be more firm than soft. Thicker varieties tend to be softer.|
|No initial odor||d||d||d+||About 15-20% of futon mattress owners report an initial smell. Some say it is chemical in nature, while others describe it as musty. The odor largely dissipates within a few days in most cases.|
|No sleeping hot||b+||b+||a||Heat issues are generally not a problem, but models with memory foam may be an exception.|
|Back sleep friendly||b-||c+||c||The beds tend to perform about average for back sleepers.|
|Side sleep friendly||c+||c||d||A significant number of side sleepers are dissatisfied due to excessive firmness.|
|Stomach sleep friendly||b-||c+||c||The beds tend to perform about average for stomach sleepers.|
|No noise||c||a||a||Models with innersprings may creak, squeak and pop. Other types are largely silent.|
|Good for sex||b-||c||d+||Innerspring futons rate highest due to their bouncing effect and overall comfort. Cotton futons may lack adequate thickness which can limit comfort and position variety.|
|Low maintenance||c||d+||d||Most futons benefit from being turned and or flipped to avoid uneven wear and sagging. Cotton futons may also benefit from being aired out on occasion.|
|Lightweight||c+||b||a||Futon beds overall weigh less than most other bed types.|
|Easily folded for sitting||c-||c+||a-||About 7% of owners, especially owners of innerspring futons, report difficulty putting the mattress into a seated position on a futon frame. As the mattress breaks in, however, this task tends to become easier.|
|Warranty||d+||d||d-||Warranty tends to not be a strength. Innerspring futons on average have a 4-year warranty; foam/cotton futons on average 3 years; cotton futons on average 1 year.|
The table below rates and compares only those futon mattresses that rate highest in owner satisfaction based on at least 60 owner experiences. Important: Information below regarding firmness is based on what tends to be true for most owners. Your personal evaluation may differ. Links below go to amazon.com. Additional retailers to consider include Thefutonshop.com, Futonland.com and Futonplanet.com.
|Owner Satisfaction / Sample Size||Price||Type||Size||Thickness||Firmness||Main Complaints (% of owners)||Retailer||Return Policy||Comment|
||94% / 585||$150-
|full||6" and 8"||med-
soft (8"), med-
|initial odor (15%), 8" may be difficult to fold for sitting (5%)||amazon, wal-
|30-day (amazon), 90-day (walmart)||Sold at walmart
.com under name "Premium Futon Mattress".
|Full Size 10" Quality Futon Mattress||93% /159||$160||foam / cotton||full||10"||med-firm||seems thinner than 10" (11%), initial odor (10%)||over
|30 days||Comes in several colors. May need regular flipping.|
|Evolution Spring 1 Futon||92% / 60||$160||inner-
|full, queen||7"||med||odor (6%), springs are felt (4%)||over
|Traditional Japanese Floor Futon
||87% / 62||$75||cotton||30" x 80"||3"||firm||initial odor (11%), too small (6%)||amazon||30 days||Can roll up. Comes in several colors.|
Owner satisfaction tends to increase as futon mattress thickness increases. A lack of thickness can result in excessive firmness and cause a person to feel the futon frame under the mattress as well as any springs inside.
Thicker models, however, are more expensive and can be more difficult to fold for use on a convertible futon frame.
An average-sized adult, owner experience data suggests, is more satisfied with six-inch or greater thickness, while a heavier adult is more satisfied with 8-inch or greater thickness. Children and teens, given their lower weight, or anyone who prefers a firm mattress can be satisfied with less than 6-inches thickness.
Futon mattresses overall are used less often by their owners than other mattress types. As the chart below shows, only about 55% of owners use their futon mattress regularly over an extended period of time.
In addition, only about half of owners use their mattress with a futon frame (a frame that can convert from a sleeping position to a sitting position). The other half of owners place their mattress on a regular bed frame, platform or directly onto the floor; a foundation or box spring is sometimes used in these cases.
Our futon mattress ratings are based on at least 1,400 futon consumer reviews gather from diverse, credible sources including review sections on retailer websites. Learn more about our research methodology.
– "Futon" is the word Americans use to refer to the traditional Japanese bed. A traditional futon is essentially a thin mat filled with textile batting that is laid directly on the floor.
– The American futon is thicker and can contain cotton/blend batting, foam, springs or a combination thereof.
– A futon mattress can be placed on a bed frame, directly on the floor, or on a wooden or metal futon frame. A futon frame can be converted from a sitting to lying position. In other words, they can serve as a chair or sofa during the day and then convert to a bed at night, thereby maximizing space.
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