Futon vs Mattress: Which Is Best for You

Futon vs Mattress: Which Is Best for You?


The age-old debate - futon or mattress? Which is better for a great night's sleep? Both have their pros and cons when it comes to factors like comfort, support, and affordability. In this article, we'll compare futons vs mattresses to help you decide which is best for your needs.

At Mattress To Door, we're dedicated to crafting premium sleep experiences tailored to you. Explore our wide selection of quality mattresses and futons to find your perfect sleep solution. Our Canadian company takes pride in delivering excellence through every step of your journey - from purchasing to delivery and beyond.

Now let's dive into unpacking the futon mattress vs mattress debate. A good sleeping surface directly affects how refreshed you feel each morning. Making the right choice is key to many rejuvenating nights ahead.

What is a Futon?

What is a Futon

A futon is a Japanese-style bed that functions as both a couch and sleeping surface. The word "futon" actually refers to the mattress itself - the cotton or foam futon mattress. This is placed on a foldable or stationary wood futon frame.

Futon mattresses are much thinner and firmer than regular mattresses. They are normally made of layers of cotton, wool, or synthetic materials. Some newer varieties incorporate foam or latex layers for extra comfort. When not in use, the futon can be folded up into couch formation.

The dual-purpose nature of futons makes them extremely space saving and versatile. Here are some of the pros of choosing a futon:

  • Affordable price point - often under $300
  • Compact size is ideal for small spaces
  • Easy to switch between couch and bed
  • Portable and easy to move around
  • Variety of frame and mattress options

Futons are a smart choice for guest rooms, small apartments, or as an extra sleep space. They can also work well in kids' rooms since they take up less square footage.

We offer premium Japanese futons handcrafted for both comfort and authentic heritage. Try our ICC 8D Futon for a traditional feel with soft, breathable layers. It starts at just $225.

What is a Mattress?

What is a Mattress

A mattress is a large padded bed designed solely for sleeping comfort. While futons double as a couch, mattresses don't provide seating space. They are made exclusively for getting high quality shuteye.

Today's mattresses fall into four main categories:

  • Innerspring - Coil system providing bounce and support
  • Memory foam - Molded to the body for pressure relief
  • Latex - Naturally responsive, antimicrobial material
  • Hybrid - Combines coils and foam for the best of both

Within each category, you'll find a range of firmness, thickness, and features. Standard sizes are Twin, Full, Queen, and King with mattresses ranging from 5" to 18" thick. Premium materials like gel memory foam or individually wrapped coils offer heightened comfort and support.

Here are some benefits that make mattresses a top choice for many:

  • Provide excellent support for restful sleep
  • Available in a huge range of comfort preferences
  • More durable than futons - lasts 6-10 years
  • Better suited for daily/nightly use as primary bed
  • Wide variety of sizes and types

We offer premium mattresses starting at just $129 without compromising on quality. Our Smooth Top Orthocare Mattress provides plush comfort at an affordable price point. For luxury comfort, the Serta Perfect Sleeper series features 1000 individually wrapped coils.

Whether you choose a futon or mattress, our sleep experts are here to match you with just the right fit for blissful sleep. Reach out today to start your journey. Sweet dreams!

Futon vs Mattress: Key Differences

Futon vs Mattress - Key Differences

Now that we've covered the basics of both futons and mattresses, let's do a detailed comparison of the two. There are some important differences when it comes to comfort, versatility, longevity and other key factors.

Comfort and Support

One of the biggest considerations for any sleeping surface is how comfortably it cradles your body and aligns your spine.

Mattresses are designed from the ground up to provide excellent comfort and support. Premium materials like memory foam or latex conform to your shape for pressure relief. Innerspring coils add bounce while reinforced edges provide edge support when getting in and out of bed.

With futons, the compact size and foldable frame put limitations on their comfort factor. The thin futon mattress is much firmer than a plush mattress. While some may find it comfortably supportive, side sleepers often feel pressure points.

Here's a quick comfort and support comparison:





4-8 inches

8-18 inches


Very firm

Range of firm, medium, plush


Less conforming

Conforms to body shape

Pressure relief

Can feel firm

Excellent pressure relief

If you prefer a soft, cushioned feel, quality mattresses are the clear winner for comfort. But firm futons serve some sleepers well.

Space Saving and Versatility

One area where futons shine is their compact, adaptable design. Since they fold up, futons are extremely space saving. The thin mattress takes up minimal room space compared to bulky mattresses.

Futons can easily switch between a couch for seating and a bed for sleeping. This versatility makes them handy for small spaces or guest rooms. Mattresses don't offer seating space and are strictly meant for sleeping.

When evaluating space and versatility needs:

  • Futons fold up neatly and tuck away nicely
  • Easier to move and transport futons
  • Mattresses available in more size options
  • Mattresses take up more permanent space

For dorms, studio apartments and multipurpose areas, futons tend to provide more flexibility. But mattresses work better as a fixed focal point in bedrooms.

Durability and Longevity

Quality craftsmanship directly impacts the lifespan of any bedding. Mattresses made with first-rate materials using expert construction methods are built to last.

Most quality mattresses will serve you well for 6-10 years before needing replacement. Premium memory foam, latex and coil mattresses retain their shape and performance night after night. Their durability provides excellent return on investment.

With routine use, futon mattress materials like cotton batting and polyester stuffing compress overtime. The folds of the frame also weaken its structure. The average futon has a lifespan of around 2-5 years.

Durability Factors



Expected Lifespan

2-5 years

6-10 years


Cotton fill compresses

Foam, latex retains shape


Foldable frame weakens

Durable support core

For a long-lasting sleep investment, quality mattresses are the way to go. But inexpensive futons can make sense if you plan to use them temporarily.

Affordability and Value

One of the main appeals of futons is their affordable price point compared to mattresses. You can get a basic futon mattress starting around $225. Full futon packages with frame, mattress and cover often retail below $300.

For mattresses, you'll find a wider spectrum of prices ranging from budget to luxury models:

  • Budget mattresses - under $300
  • Mid-range mattresses - $300 to $1000
  • High-end mattresses - $1000 and up

In the under $500 range, futons tend to be the more wallet-friendly choice. But long term, mattresses often provide better overall value, especially higher priced options. Their superior comfort, support and lifespan equate to a better return on your sleep investment.

Here's a price value overview:



Low Price

Higher Price


Good value for money

Less longevity


Budget options available

Excellent long term value

V. Which Should You Choose - Futon or Mattress?

Now for the million dollar question - which option should you choose for your needs? Let's explore the factors that can steer you towards a futon, mattress or even sofa bed.

Living Space

The size and layout of your room is a big determiner. Futons make smart use of floor space in small rooms and apartments. Their flexibility fits studio living and lets you maximize every square foot.

For larger bedrooms, a fixed mattress becomes a more sensible focal point. You have the space to dedicate a permanent sleeping area. Mattress sizes like Queen and King also fit nicely in bigger rooms.


Futons work well for occasional use since the materials don't need to withstand daily wear and tear. For a primary bed used daily and nightly, mattresses are the wiser option. Their durability holds up better under routine use.

If purchasing a bed for a guest room or kid heading off to college, a futon could meet temporary needs. For your master bedroom, opt for the comfort and longevity of a quality mattress.


What's your budget for a new bed? Under $300, you can find some decent futons. In the $300 to $500 range, both futons and more affordable mattresses are options. With $500+ to invest, well-made mattresses provide exceptional comfort and support.

Getting a premium mattress within your budget gives you the most return on investment. But futons adequately meet lower budget needs.

Personal Preferences

Sometimes it simply comes down to individual likes and dislikes. The minimalist, firm feel of a futon provides sufficient support for some sleepers. Side sleepers often favor the plush cushioning and pressure relief of a good mattress.

Health factors also play a role. An extra firm mattress promotes proper spinal alignment for those with back pain. The foldable frame of a futon may not suit those with mobility challenges.

Take your personal sleep position, health conditions and comfort preferences into account. Our sleep experts can guide you to the right fit.

Our Sleep Products for Every Need

At Mattress To Door, we want you to find sleep bliss - whether that's on a futon or mattress. We offer a wide selection of both to suit every preference and budget.

All our products are proudly Canadian made with a focus on quality, comfort and support. Here are some highlights:


  • ICC 8D Futon - Traditional Japanese style with soft fill
  • ICC 211 Futon - Affordable foam and cotton layers
  • ICC Deluxe Futon - Bamboo cover for luxury feel

Futon Pricing


Price starting from



ICC 211


ICC Deluxe



Mattress Pricing


Price starting from

Sweet Sleep


Dream Catcher


Perfect Sleeper


And many more options to discover! Explore our full product range today.

Our 90-night trial lets you test out select mattresses and futons with free returns. Delivery is fast and free for all orders. Reach out to our sleep experts anytime for personalized recommendations and advice.

Invest in the right bed for your needs and start waking up refreshed and renewed every single day!

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