A split king mattress is more than a promising new alternative to standard mattresses. In many parts of Europe, split king mattresses, and split mattresses in general, are already a staple in hotel rooms and family homes. This way, you can still have the comfort of having your own space to sleep on, but you’ll save room and floor space and get to sleep next to someone as you would with a traditional king-size mattress. If you’re considering an adjustable bed, an adjustable split king set would be much more versatile for couples; each person can individually adjust their mattress to their liking without having to sleep on separate beds.
What is a Split King Mattress?
A split mattress is a king-sized mattress that’s split in two vertically down the center into two twin XL-sized mattresses. However, they’re not entirely separate, as they’re held together by a connector. You would fit both mattresses together on a standard frame. This extra separation can be a great option for those who prefer a little more personal space while sleeping next to someone else. Many split king mattresses are adjustable — an adjustable mattress can be controlled electronically to accommodate different height options like raising the head or feet to any desired height. This works especially well for split king mattresses because two people can share a bed but can individually adjust their mattress to their own comfort.
The dimensions of a split king mattress are the same as that of a king mattress; 76 by 80 inches. The two mattresses are each 38 inches in width. The area is 6,080 square feet, again, the same as that of a king.
Other Mattress Sizes
There are plenty of other mattress sizes out there, and you might want to get familiar with them all before deciding which one you want to invest in.
A standard twin mattress will be 38 inches width-wise. Each individual mattress in a split king will equal this size, but a twin is 74 inches long versus a king’s 76 inches. Some couples that prefer to sleep more separately than a split king may opt for two twin mattresses that they can place in separate bed frames. If the 74-inch length is too short, a twin XL may be the solution: a twin XL is the same width as a twin but is 80 inches long.
A full-sized mattress is the next step up at 75×54 inches. Then, a standard queen at 80×60 inches. While two people can sleep comfortably on a full mattress, a queen is usually the smallest size most couples will choose. Just like a split king, split queen mattresses are an option– but they’re much rarer. You might choose a split queen mattress to save a bit of extra room.
A California king mattress is 72×84 inches. Although slightly more narrow than a king, it’s four inches longer, which is a good option for people who feel too tall for a king or want extra legroom. Split California king mattresses are available as well, but like a split queen, they’re more difficult to find.
Split Mattress Pros and Cons
The pros of a split king mattress start with comfort. Couples can sleep individually while still on the same bed and adjust personalized sleeping preferences. With an adjustable bed, each mattress can be adjusted. If one person moves a lot, having a split king bed will reduce motion transfer so the other person won’t feel it on a separate mattress. Sheets and mattress toppers/pads can also be added individually to preference. Lastly, it’s much easier to move around two separate twin or twin XL mattresses than a single king mattress.
The biggest con of a split king bed is the gap in the middle. This might make it difficult to cuddle next to a partner or sit in the center of the bed. Luckily, it’s easy to work around. You can use a single mattress topper and sheet set, or get a gap filler made specifically for split king mattresses that’ll solve the problem immediately. Also, although two twin XL mattresses are small individually, they aren’t when put together. If you live in a small apartment or have a small bedroom, the size may not be ideal. If you opt for an adjustable bed, know that prices will definitely be higher than a standard bed, and assembly will be more difficult. Even standard, non-adjustable split mattresses are generally more expensive because they’re rarer than non-split king beds.
Why You Should Get a Split King Mattress
Now you know what split king mattresses are and how they compare to other mattress sizes. But why, exactly, would getting a split king mattress be a better option than a king?
It mainly comes down to individualized preferences. The two mattresses in the split king don’t need to be the same — if one person prefers a softer mattress and the other wants a firm one, then you can each purchase your own mattress and combine them. If you purchase an adjustable bed, you can position your side of the bed differently than your partner. You can also use different types of sheets or mattress toppers based on your individual preference but still sleep in the same bed frame as your partner.
A split mattress is also a good option for those who are uncomfortable sleeping with someone who turns a lot in their sleep. Because they’re on a separate mattress, your side of the bed won’t shake or move if they’re tossing and turning.
Split king mattresses are also convenient — they’re much easier to transport. A king mattress is large and difficult to move, but you can easily move two separate twin mattresses from a split king bed.
How to Connect Split King Mattresses
Split king mattresses are entirely separate until used with a connector. Most split king mattresses have an iron plate connector. This can typically be adjusted in width. If you or your partner moves a lot in sleep, then the mattresses may slide around and you might find yourself having trouble keeping them together with the way you adjusted them. It’s best to use the iron plate connector at the farthest setting so that the mattresses don’t slide around their bases too much.
Adjusting the connector is a good first step if you’re encountering this problem. However, it might not be enough. In this case, there are plenty of other things you can do to ensure your mattresses stay together long-term. The best solution is to purchase a non-slip mattress pad. You’ll place this in between the base and the mattress so it won’t slide around; problem solved! If you don’t want a mattress pad but have minimal movement, you can also use non-slip tape. Lastly, make sure that your bed frame is the correct size and is fitted. It’ll keep both mattresses in place.
Split King Adjustable Beds
One of the best ways to level up your split king mattress is by checking out a split king adjustable bed. Just like a normal adjustable bed, a split king adjustable bed has remote-controlled, phone-controlled, or button options to alter the height of certain parts of the mattress, like the back/head part so you can sit up, or raise the bottom half for the legs and feet. While you can get an adjustable bed for any mattress, it’s an especially good choice for a split king because each person can individually adjust their mattress while still sleeping on the same bed. Adjustable beds were first used in hospitals, so those with health problems who need to sleep more upright or those who experience pain in certain positions can also benefit. Adjustable beds are sold in what is known as an adjustable bed base, so you’ll need to pair it with a bed frame for extra support and style options.
Split King Pricing and Where to Buy
The price of a split king bed varies based on whether or not you’re getting an adjustable base. Most adjustable beds will cost between $1,000 and $3,000. Adjustable beds with more features like charging ports, phone/remote control, or temperature control will be more expensive. Basic options are cheaper. For the mattresses alone, a split king mattress set will be anywhere from $700 to $4,000 which is cheaper than buying two separate twin XL mattresses, which will individually cost between $300 and $2,000.
The price of the mattress is affected by material and brand. Sleep Number is a trustworthy brand that sells split king and split California king mattresses at affordable price points. They only sell their split mattresses with adjustable bases in a set known as the “Smart Bed”. You can choose from different mattress heights and comfort layer heights. The Smart Bed can be controlled from your cellphone.
You can also choose to invest in a memory foam mattress — this is guaranteed to last the longest and provide the greatest comfort. Memory foam is a synthetic material that changes shape with pressure and “molds” to your body’s sleeping position. Once pressure is removed, it slowly rises to its original position. Sleep Number offers one memory foam adjustable split king bed, but at a higher price. Zoma is another reliable brand that sells a split king adjustable bed and split king mattresses that feature a gel memory foam layer.
Benefits of Adjustable Beds
Sleeping in an elevated position with an adjustable bed can help reduce or eliminate acid reflux, which happens more often when lying flat.
The zero-gravity option on many adjustable beds raises the head and feet so that there is less pressure on the neck and back, and improves blood circulation.
Sleep Apnea and Snoring
Along with the use of a sleep apnea pillow/CPAP pillow and a CPAP machine, people with sleep apnea can use an adjustable bed to reduce pressure on the head and neck and keep their airways clear. This reduces sleep apnea events and also snoring.
Split King Bed Setups We Love
- Sven & Son Split King Adjustable Bed Base Frame + 10” Luxury Cool Gel Memory Foam Mattress, Head Up Foot Up, USB Ports, Zero Gravity, Interactive Dual Massage, Wireless, Classic (Split King)
- Kyvno 12" Gel-Cooling Premium Memory Foam Mattress Adjustable Bed Frame Combo, Wireless Remote, Zero Gravity, TV/PC Position, Medium Firm, CertiPUR-US Certified (Split King)
- GhostBed Split King Adjustable Bed Frame Power Base with 11" Cool Gel Memory Foam Mattress - Electric Bed Base with Lumbar Support - Zero Gravity and Massage Settings, Adjustable Bed Split King
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We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.
Completing Your Split King Bed
In addition to purchasing your split king mattress set, you’ll also need to purchase a bed frame, adjustable base (if you want one), bedding, and optional mattress toppers. So, is it one or two beds? How many sets do you need to buy? You’ll find out below.
Bedding and Sheets
You have many options for your bedding. One thing you’ll need is individual fitted sheets to properly fit over each of the individual mattresses instead of trying to stretch out a king-sized fitted sheet over both. If you purchase a split king sheet set, you’ll get two twin XL-sized fitted sheets and one flat sheet that covers both mattresses together. But if your plan is to get separate beddings altogether, purchase two separate twin XL bedding sets so you’ll get an individual flat sheet for each mattress. It’s up to you!
You’ll also want to get pillowcases, decorative shams, and a comforter or duvet. A comforter is a single blanket that sits on top of your bedding. It’s thick and decorative and can be filled with many different materials like down or synthetic down. A duvet is a two-piece set with a duvet cover and duvet insert. The duvet insert is typically made of high quality down and it’s plain white while the cover is thin and decorative and zippers around the insert or uses buttons/ties. Maintenance is the main difference between the two; for a duvet, only the cover is washed, while for a comforter the entire blanket is washed. Unlike how you should use separate fitted sheets, almost all split king beds use a single comforter/duvet, but you can get separate ones if you wish.
Bed Frame and Base
You’ll need to purchase an adjustable bed base for split king mattresses if you want an adjustable bed. This base goes inside of a bed frame. If you don’t want an adjustable bed, then you’ll just need a bed frame that’s the same dimensions as a king, 76×80 inches. Remember that while you can use any king-sized bed frame, you can’t just put two twin XL mattresses together to make a split king set because you need the special connectors that split king sets have.
Split king beds are gaining popularity in the West after they became common in Europe. A split king bed is one with two twin XL-sized mattresses put together with a connector, equaling the dimensions of a standard king bed. This is a perfect option for couples who want to sleep individually to prevent motion transfer and share space equally but not sleep on separate beds.
Many split king beds are adjustable, meaning they’re sold with an adjustable base or can be used with one. This way, two people can adjust their mattresses separately if they have different sleeping preferences. Having an adjustable bed is a true luxury–it can be electronically or remotely controlled, have temperature and massage settings, and you can adjust the height of the head or feet of the mattress so you can sit upright, have a “zero-gravity” position, or raise separate parts. The benefits of an adjustable bed aren’t limited to luxury. It can help those with sleep apnea, snoring, back pain, and neck pain– they were initially created for hospitals, after all.
In terms of pros and cons, a split king set is great for comfort. If one person moves, the other won’t feel it on their separate mattress. You can also transport two separate twin XL mattresses much more easily than a king bed. Also, you can pick from a split queen or split California king set, too, if you want more variety. For cons, a split king mattress set will generally be more expensive than a king mattress, whether it’s adjustable or not. This is for the simple reason that split king beds are rare and many retailers haven’t yet started selling them. The gap in the center of the mattresses may also be uncomfortable because you can’t sleep in the center of the bed and the mattresses might move around. However, you can adjust the iron plate connector to your liking, and also invest in a special gap filler made specifically for split mattresses. A non-slip mattress pad or non-slip tape are some other options.
Once you’ve chosen your split king bed frame/base and mattress set, you’ll need to pick out a few other items. First is sheets. You can get a split king sheet set or buy separate fitted and flat sheets. Then you’ll need either a comforter or duvet to cover both mattresses. All in all, we hope this article provided the information necessary for you to make your decision on whether or not you feel that a split king mattress is right for you.