What’s the difference between bed and mattress?

Trick question! There’s no difference. Bed and mattress have all been used interchangeably since the 16th century. They’ve been used as synonymous terms in English for several centuries, and there’s no difference between them.

However, we do consider them different in today’s age.

Beds or bed frames are furniture that are made from various materials and serve as a base. Strongly constructed, it can be used to sleep, to lay down, or to recline. The mattress, on the other hand, is a rectangular pad made from softer materials like foam and is designed to provide support while lying down. 

A mattress in a box is a mattress that has been compressed to fit inside a box. A mattress topper is a layer that is placed on the mattress for better comfort and to protect the mattress. Bed frames are necessary as they provide storage, support the mattress. 

How is a bed different from a mattress?

A bed is a whole unit under which the platform supports the mattress, headboard, footboard, and coverings. The mattress being under the bed’s unit can still function without the assistance of a bed by being placed on the floor. In comparison, a bed doesn’t make sense without the existence of a mattress.

A mattress comes in various sizes. The primary purpose of a mattress is to provide comfort and support while lying on the bed. The mattress acts as cushioning and improves the overall experience of the bed as a unit.

Bed vs Mattress 

To understand things better, let’s look into the differences between a bed and a mattress:


  • It is built from wood, rattan, or metal
  • It consists headboard, footboard, mattress, blankets, and pillows
  • It cannot function without a mattress
  • Used for resting and sleeping on


  • Is filled with coiled springs, feathers, cotton, foam, latex, and more
  • Can function both on the bed or floor
  • It assists the person who sleeps on it

Are bed frames necessary?

Some people prefer just placing the mattress on the floor to sleep and relax. Which ultimately leads to ignoring the benefits of a bed frame. A bed frame is mattress support made of various materials like metal, wood, leather, and more. So are bed frames necessary? Have a look at its benefits:

  • Due to regular usage, mattresses can sag, and that’s where bed frames act as a foundation to support the mattress and avoid back pain or uneasiness.
  • Bed frames also provide storage space where you can easily store your items.
  • The bed frames are also visually appealing, making your space look organized rather than a mattress lying on the floor.
  • While sleeping or lying, body fluids or sweat may seep into the mattress. If your mattress is on the floor, it can attract mold or bacteria due to a lack of air circulation. But slatted bed frames for mattresses provide air circulation that will take place quickly with no mold or fungus.

What is a mattress in a box?

The mattress in a box is a compressed mattress made to fit inside the storage and was first introduced in the UK in August 2016. The intention is to provide a better mattress shopping experience via online platforms rather than the traditional way. The idea also considered the inconvenience and expenditure of transporting a mattress from the usual store.

Mattress in a box not only saves money and storage space but also makes the mattress very portable (before opening it). Another marketing strategy that made the mattress in a box trendy is free delivery and a free trial period with a full refund if not satisfied. 

How to pick the right mattress in a box?

Since there are many varieties of mattresses in a box, here are few pointers you can remember while choosing one:

  • First, figure out what kind of sleeper you are. If you are a side sleeper, look for a soft mattress. If back, go for a balance of soft and firm, and if stomach, go for the firm.
  • Decide on a budget and accordingly look for the mattress. You can spend on a bigger mattress if you have the money or keep your eyes on exciting sales or offers.
  • Make sure you know what mattress will meet your needs. Consider memory foam or pocket coil mattresses if you have to share your bed. You’ll both sleep soundly, and nobody will be disturbed.

What is a mattress topper?

Providing additional comfort, cushioning, and protection to the sleeper is the purpose of mattress toppers. It is primarily necessary to use a mattress topper when your mattress is either too soft or too hard. You can use a mattress topper for a campervan or camping when you can’t take a mattress.

Additionally, it prevents the mattress from sagging and maintains balance for the sleeper.

What to look for in a mattress topper?

There are a few things you should keep in mind when buying a mattress topper:

  • Mattress toppers should be the right size for your mattress, as they help to secure your mattress.
  • If you suffer from allergies, opt for mattress toppers that shield you from dust or allergens. To help you sleep better if you are a hot sleeper, get mattress toppers with a cooling effect.
  • A mattress topper’s thickness determines the modification of a mattress. However, thicker toppers tend to be more expensive. 
  • Ensure that the mattress topper is firm and comfortable enough to support you and your mattress. Therefore, double-check the firmness and comfort.


Sleep is incomplete if your mattress is uncomfortable or infirm. A good bed is nothing without a good mattress. Therefore, make sure that you pick the right mattress, and if you don’t have a bed, you might want to think twice about that.