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What is the Best Mattress for a Slat Bed?

If you have ever been caught up in the excitement of shopping for a new mattress and the comfort it promises, you may already be aware of how quickly you can forget about matching it to the type of bed you own. Bed frames are not a one size fits all concerning mattress support, and this is important to take into consideration when choosing a new sleeping surface.

Bed frames are often categorized into those that require a box spring, platform, or slatted surface upon which your mattress rests. The differences between this support can make or break the comfort your mattress promises, and may even void warranties if used with mattress types that aren’t supported. So which is the best mattress for a slat bed base? We answer that below!

Slat Bed Frames Defined

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A slatted bed frame is a type of platform bed designed to keep you from requiring a box spring for proper mattress support and comfort. The slats span the width of your bed frame to provide the support needed to hold your mattress snugly and provide comfort to the sleeper. In many cases the slats may be adjustable or even bowed, to provide additional give for various body weights.

What are the differences between Bed Slats vs Box Spring . Check our comparison article about it.

Slats may be built into the frame for a more permanent, solid construction, or maybe joined by a mesh or fabric weave to keep them evenly spaced and help keep them from shifting. This type of design allows for a wide range of mattress to be supported whether you are looking to continue using an existing mattress, or purchasing a new one.


Why Choose a Slatted Bed?

As mentioned, slatted beds generally can support a wide range of mattress types without fear of voiding a warranty or disrupting the type of support it claims. They also allow you to avoid the use of a box spring unless you want to add height to certain mattress types and can be easily used with a bunkie board to provide a more solid, firm feeling base.

Bunkie Board

The slats also allow increased airflow to your mattress, which is very beneficial to the overall longevity of your mattress. Mattresses are designed for air circulation to existing to help keep it dry and clean and keep the sleeper comfortable.

They also offer excellent weight distribution from your mattress and provides stability to sleepers to avoid movement transfer. Plus, slats provide the opportunity to allow for mattress firmness adjustability through the addition of, or removal of, slats.

Concerns of a Slatted Bed

Not all slatted beds are made the same and always watch for slat reinforcements, especially with queen and king-sized beds. Slats are most likely not strong enough to span such a long distance and provide support without breaking or warping under the added weight- so be sure to watch for well-designed frames.

Most slats sit 3 to 4 inches from each other to provide support for all mattress types, but the wider space, the less likely it can support certain foam beds due to the nature of the foam. Luckily, you can always add slats if this is the case to correct this issue.

Since a slatted bed is a type of platform bed, it will sit closer to the ground than a more traditional frame. This may make it lower than you prefer. Luckily, you can usually add a box spring for added height if you have a mattress that works with a box spring. Otherwise, you can combine a box spring and bunkie board to provide support for other types of mattresses, or even look to add a mattress topper to add height.


Best Mattresses for a Platform Bed with Slats?

As long as your slats are close enough together, a slatted option can support any type of mattress you may have- or be considering. This makes it an excellent option for anyone looking to use such a design since it is so versatile. Since it provides the option to be used without a box spring, and allow for enough support for just about any mattress, this also saves you money overall. Mattress types included are as follows:

β€” Memory Foam Mattresses

Because memory foam is not rigid, it does require a strong platform to rest upon. Slats that are placed 3 to 4 inches apart are generally considered stable and supportive enough. If slats are wider, you may want to consider adding a bunkie board or extra slats to provide the support needed.

β€” Latex Mattresses

Latex is also a type of foam and requires stable support, but because it is not as malleable as memory foam it can generally rest upon most surfaces without worry of a loss of comfort.

β€” Spring Mattresses

Spring mattresses already are built to be used on just about any surface, including a box spring that provides a minimal framework to rest upon. It is a rigid design and very self-supportive so it works well with a slatted surface. You can use both single and double-sided spring mattresses easily.

β€” Hybrid Mattresses

Hybrid mattresses have a spring coil inside surrounded by memory foam and/or latex outer. Occasionally these can be flipped as well. As long as the slats are 3 to 4 inches apart, they will support this type of mattress well.



A slat bed is a great option for anyone looking to replace an existing bed frame or make their first bed purchase. The overall design will last a lifetime and allow you to use any mattress you decide upon without worry of voiding warranty or altering the comfort it promises. Occasionally slat may need to be replaced or added to for proper support, but this is a minor detail and easy to take care of.