Kids Bed Buying Guide: How to Choose the Right One

Written by: Alyssa Larsen



Time to read 9 min

Buying a new bed for your kids may come sooner than you think. When your baby outgrows their crib or your teenager wants a more grown-up look in their bedroom, it’s time to choose a new bed. Picking the right one is critical to the function and style of your child’s bedroom as well as their safety and quality of sleep.

In this kid's bed buying guide, we’ll help you navigate the important factors to consider when choosing the perfect bed for your kids.

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How to Choose a Kids Bed

A new bed frame and mattress isn’t something you want to replace every year. Investing in high-quality pieces that meet your functional needs and aesthetic preferences can increase the lifespan of your furniture. 

Before you buy, consider these aspects when it comes to selecting the best kid’s bed.

Safety Features

The safety aspects you look for in a bed will depend on your child’s age and abilities. Younger children who enjoy high-energy, physical play may need a low-profile bed that sits on to the ground to prevent fall injuries.

An older child who’s confident in their climbing skills might do well with a high sleeper bed like a loft bed or bunk bed.

Nurture& has designed a twin bed with multiple safety features in mind. The Kids Bed is made of an upholstered bed frame with rounded edges to minimize bumps and bruises. You can add removable safety rails to The Kids Bed making this a staple piece of furniture that evolves with your child’s needs. 

Size and Space Considerations

With so many types of beds to choose from, taking measurements before you buy is a must. Compare the length and height of the bed with the available space in your child’s bedroom—remember a bigger bed will fit differently in the room than your little one’s crib.

There’s a delicate balance between choosing a bed that fits your child right now and what will work for them in a year or two. Go for a bigger size when you can and if you’re working in tight quarters you may want to consider reorganizing the room to accommodate the new bed. 

Kids bed

Material and Construction

What a bed frame is made of and how it’s put together will determine the bed's durability. No matter how old your child is, they will likely play, flop down, or jump on their bed. A sturdy bed made of high-quality materials, like solid wood with metal hardware supports, will endure the common everyday actions of kids.

Within the bed’s manual, you’ll be able to see the materials used and whether this particular kid’s bed meets approved safety standards. Organizations like the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) and American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) outline requirements for both toddler beds and bunk beds, and you can subscribe to receive emails regarding recalls through the CPSC website.

Nurture&’s beds comply with all safety regulations and exceed ASTM standards to create resilient, non-toxic products safe for daily, close contact with your little ones. 

Design and Aesthetics

Take into consideration your child’s personality to select a bed that’s right for them. You could choose a themed bed designed with your child’s favorite character or a simple bed frame to complement an assortment of blankets and pillows.

A bed with a large, decorated headboard could serve as the focal point for a redesigned room, or a frame that’s sleek and compact can fit in with the existing aesthetic of your child’s bedroom.

The Kids Bed displays a neutral, yet modern upholstered frame. Available in 12 color combinations, you can mix and match the top and base colors for a two-toned or monochromatic style. With The Kids Bed, you can continue to update the look of the room by converting it to a daybed later on or adding trundle storage underneath. 

Blue kids bed

Types of Kids Beds

These days, children’s beds come in a variety of options. You can create a cozy sleep environment with any type of bed, but use this guide to help you determine which is best for your kid’s bedroom.

  • Platform Beds: These beds are made with a series of wooden slats or metal bars across the width of the frame to brace the mattress. A platform bed doesn’t require a traditional box spring, but still provides a sturdy base and comfortable support like the beds offered by Nurture&.
  • Storage Beds: Every kid’s room could use extra storage space. A bed that offers storage makes the most of the available space in the room. Shelves or drawers in the headboard or footboard are safe and easy for kids to access. Trundle under-bed storage provides plenty of room to hold extra sheets and blankets or to keep toys and clothes within your child’s reach.
  • Bunk Beds: Great for two kids sharing a room or for sleepovers with friends, bunk beds provide double the sleep space without covering more floor space. Bunk beds use either an attached ladder or staircase to access the top bunk and sometimes include storage. This kind of bed is best for kids who both understand how to be safe on the top bunk.
  • Loft Beds: Similar to bunk beds, you can save floor space with a loft bed that has a top bunk for sleeping and usable space underneath. A desk, dresser, or toy box could fit under a loft bed, or add a rug and bean bag on the floor to create a play space or reading nook. Loft beds can be found at different heights for a high or mid-sleeper bed.
  • Cabin Beds: These beds are slightly elevated but normally don’t require steps or a ladder. Cabin beds provide more storage space underneath than a standard single bed, but less than a loft bed. Some even take the “cabin” title to the next level with a house-like frame over the top of the bed creating a fun space that kids want to sleep in.
  • Trundle Beds: Another option for two children sleeping in the same room is to roll a bed on wheels out from underneath a standard-sized bed. While it does take up more floor space when in use, the trundle bed fits perfectly underneath—and has the appearance of—a single bed when it’s put away.
  • Toddler Beds: Toddler beds are perfect for your littlest big kids since they are low to the ground and have guardrails to prevent rolling out. Convertible cribs can become toddler beds with a few quick adjustments, saving you time and money when you’re ready to make the first transition to a kid’s bed.

How to Choose a Mattress For Your Kid’s Bed

Choosing a bed frame is a crucial part of buying your kid the perfect bed, but the right mattress is equally important. Take into account the mattress size and materials before buying one for your child’s bed.

Mattress Size

Most kid’s beds are toddler beds or twin beds. A bed mattress is typically sized to match the size of the bed frame:

  • Toddler beds use a crib mattress with a width and length of 28 inches by 52 inches.

  • A twin bed accommodates a twin-size mattress that measures 38 inches by 75 inches. A mattress labeled twin XL is five inches longer than a standard twin kid’s mattress. This may work well for teenagers but does require a bed frame specific to the twin XL size.

Mattress Materials

A firm, innerspring crib mattress is best for toddlers, while older children may be more comfortable on a softer hybrid or memory foam mattress. A firm crib mattress provides safety and support for young children. Kids ages five and older can find adequate support and comfort sleeping on a memory foam mattress that conforms to the shape of their body.

Keep in mind that materials can affect the size of the mattress. A plush mattress with an added mattress topper can create a tight fit within the frame, whereas a compact, ultra-firm mattress could leave gaps between the edge of the mattress and the bed frame. 

Tips for Transitioning: Moving From a Crib to a Bed

Making the move to a big kid bed for the first time can be intimidating for some children. The timing of the transition can impact your child’s sleeping habits—for better or for worse.

Here are some ways to make getting a new bed a positive experience for you and your kid.

  • Maintain your routine. Help your child get ready for bed and wind down for the night the same way you always do. The familiarity of your bedtime routine will help the new bed feel normal.
  • Discuss the change. Talk with your child often in the days leading up to getting a new bed. Let them know what it will be like and give them the opportunity to ask you questions.
  • Start with naptime. If your little one is still napping during the day, this can be a great time to introduce the new bed. A short sleep in the middle of the day may feel less scary than a long sleep through the night.
  • Consider a toddler bed. The big difference between a crib and a bed is the ability your child has to get out of bed on their own. A convertible crib that changes to a toddler bed is a great option for young children to still feel safely enclosed in their sleep space.
  • Childproof the room. The newfound freedom your little one has to explore their bedroom can be a source of worry for parents. Secure the room with child safety gear before you make the switch to a big kid bed.
  • Be patient. Remember that this transition is a process. Getting out of bed and needing extra cuddles from Mom and Dad are normal experiences as your child learns to sleep in their new bed.

Transitioning from a crib to a toddler bed may be the best choice for your child’s first bed, but when will they be ready for a twin bed?

There’s no exact age to move your child out of a toddler bed and into a bigger bed. Along with the height and weight limits of the toddler bed, take into account your child’s personality. A child who shows signs of readiness, like easily climbing in and out of your bed, not standing on the bed, and having an interest in sleeping in a bigger bed, might be prepared to make the move. 



What’s the difference between a twin bed and a kid’s twin bed?

A twin bed made for kids may have a frame that is less bulky or lower to the ground, but still larger than a crib or toddler bed.

Is a full-size bed too big for a kid?

This is mostly personal preference, but generally, a child doesn’t need the extra space that a full bed offers until they are a teenager. A twin XL is another suitable option for older or taller kids.

What bed is best for a five-year-old?

 At age five, your child is right on the cusp of being content in a toddler bed and ready to move into a twin bed. If your child needs a new bed and they’re showing signs of readiness, a twin-sized bed will be comfortable for longer.

What is the standard bed size for a kid?

Most kids are sleeping in a toddler bed with a crib mattress that measures 28” x 52” or a twin bed with a sleeping surface of 38” x 75”.

Finding the right bed that safely provides your child with a good night’s sleep is essential to every kid’s bedroom.

Nurture& wants to help you create the bedroom of your child’s dreams! We offer modern kid’s beds made of superior quality materials. You can find the perfect bedroom furniture for your kid’s room when you shop our collections. Read Our Journal to find more support written for parents, by parents

Alyssa Larsen

Alyssa Larsen

Alyssa Larsen is a stay-at-home mom with a passion for writing. Before starting her career as a freelance writer, Alyssa devoted all of her time to her family and raising her young children. The evolution of her motherhood journey and parenting experience inspires her work. She strives to always tell a story that is helpful and relatable to the person reading it. Alyssa lives in Ohio with her husband and four hilarious kids.