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Twin XL size beds and split king beds have a lot in common. They’re both able to accommodate taller sleepers. They’re both designed to give adults the same amount of sleeping space. In reality, they’re both the same size. The only difference is a split king is two twin XL mattresses instead of one.
While twin XL mattresses and split king mattresses share lots of qualities, there are also things about them that are different. Below, we’ll talk more in-depth about those differences and discuss which bed size could be right for you.
Twin XL Mattresses
Twin size beds are famous for their ability to fit in tiny spaces like dorm rooms and studio apartments. However, regular twins are too short for a lot of sleepers. If you’re taller, they can leave your feet hanging. The good news is twin XL beds can swoop in and save the day, the added legroom establishing a mattress for tall people!
The twin XL mattresses can fit in all the small spaces that regular twin mattresses can. But they can also accommodate taller sleepers at the same time. That makes them the perfect choice for single sleepers who need a little extra legroom, or as an occasional use bed, such as a mattress for guest room.
Twin XL Dimensions
The twin XL mattress is 38 by 80 inches. That makes it as wide as a regular twin bed and as long as a queen and a king size mattress. At over 6.5 feet long, the twin XL can accommodate all but the tallest of sleepers without taking up a lot of extra space in the bedroom.
Twin XL Ideal Room Size
Generally speaking, you need about two feet of space around three sides of your bed to get sufficient clearance to get in and out of bed and walk around your room. That means you’ll need no less than 7 feet of width and 8.5 feet of length in your room for your bed to comfortably fit.
However, you’ll need to think about bedroom furniture. If you want a dresser, night tables, or other furnishings, you’ll need extra space. An 8 by 10-foot room will offer more space for bedroom furnishings.
One advantage of twin XL mattresses is they’re designed for single adults. That means they can be put up against the wall if you’re really crunched on space. If you put a twin XL against the wall, with no furniture, you can get away with a room as small as 5 by 7 feet. That allows you to convert a room like a walk-in closet or maid’s room into a bedroom in a pinch.
Ideal Sleepers for a Twin XL
The twin XL size mattress is perfect for those who need a compact bed that doesn’t sacrifice legroom. Single sleepers over six feet tall who need to fit their beds into a small room like a dorm room or a studio apartment would do well with a twin XL.
Twin XL mattresses are also fantastic for multi-bed situations. They make perfect mattresses for bunk beds. And you can also fit two twin XL beds side by side in a guest room.
Twin XL vs. Regular Twin
So, what’s the difference between a twin and twin XL mattress? The twin XL mattress adds five inches to the regular twin bed, which is 38 by 75 inches. That means the twin XL isn’t as compact as the standard twin bed. But it can comfortably sleep taller individuals than the twin.
Advantages of a Twin XL
Twin XL mattresses offer three main advantages: cost, legroom, and compactness. We’ve already talked about how twin XL mattresses offer five extra inches of length over regular twin beds. Yet they still retain the compactness of the regular twin.
Twin XL beds can save space, for sure. But they’re also easy to move from place to place. In fact, it’s usually easy for just one person to move a twin XL mattress. This can be a huge advantage for those who need to move a mattress by themselves.
Twin XL mattresses also boast amazing affordability. They’re usually not all that much more expensive than regular twins. And they’re definitely the cheapest option for sleepers over six feet tall.
Twin XL Cost
Material and quality impact the cost of any bed. For example, you’ll be paying a lot more for a latex hybrid twin XL than a standard innerspring twin XL. But generally, the twin XL is on the more affordable end of every size run, regardless of your chosen type of mattress. Twin XL beds typically cost $50 to $100 more than twins.
SEE ALSO:Best Mattresses for the Money
Split King Mattresses
The split king size mattress is not a single mattress. It’s made by setting two twin XL mattresses side by side in the same king-size bed frame. There are many advantages to this arrangement. But the main draw of the split king size mattress is that it allows couples to share a bed despite having different sleep needs.
Split King Dimensions
Two twin XL mattresses are the same dimensions as a standard king size bed: 76 by 80 inches. That means the split king and regular king are the exact same size. In fact, it’s common to place twin XL size mattress foundations under a standard king size mattress because they’re easier to move and offer better support.
Split King Ideal Room Size
Split king size beds are exactly six feet wide by just over 6.5 feet long. That means you need a room that’s no less than 8.5 by 10 feet if all you want is a bed. However, if you want standard bedroom furniture, you’ll need a room of no less than 10 by 10 or even 10 by 12 feet.
Ideal Sleepers for a Split King
The split king size bed was designed as a mattress for couples who have differing sleep needs. For example, heavier sleepers and lighter sleepers need different firmness levels. So a couple with one heavy and one light partner can each select the mattress firmness that best fits them.
Split king mattresses also allow for couples to select different materials. If one partner wants a hybrid while the other wants latex, both can get what they want without having to sleep in separate beds.
Perhaps the most well-known use for split king mattresses is as a companion for the split king adjustable bed. The split king adjustable bed allows each sleeper to use their own ideal settings without affecting their partner.
So if one partner wants to lie flat while the other wants to sleep in the zero-gravity pose, two separate twin XL mattresses allow each partner to set their adjustable bed as they like without having to sleep apart.
Split King vs. Standard King
Split king mattresses and standard king mattresses are the same size. The only difference between them is the split king is two twin XL beds in one frame, while the standard king is just a single king size mattress.
Advantages of a Split King
The main advantage of a split king bed is that it allows couples to sleep in the same bed while still getting exactly what they want as far as feel and adjustable base settings. However, there are other advantages to split king mattresses besides that.
A huge advantage of the split king bed comes into play when it’s time to move. Moving a king bed is a nightmare. Heavy and bulky king mattresses are tough for two people to move and impossible for just one person. However, the twin XL size mattress is easy to just pick up and carry right out the door. One person can do it twice, and voila! The bed is moved.
Another advantage of the split king bed is its potential status as one of the most durable mattresses. A twin XL mattress has less space between its edges. So it’s less likely to experience sagging in the middle than the king mattress. So you can expect your split king bed to last longer than a regular king.
Split King Cost
A major drawback of the split king bed is its cost. The split king bed is typically the most expensive bed size in the traditional size run. It’s even more expensive than the California king bed.
So plan to pay at least $200 more for a split king than a regular king of the same make and model (and possibly a lot more than that). Of course, the smart shopper can keep an eye out for mattress sales and mattress coupons to save more on a split king mattress.
Best Split King Size Mattress: Amerisleep AS3
- Mattress Type:Memory foam
- Mattress Height:12 inches
- Firmness:Medium (5 to 6 on the firmness scale)
- Best for most sleeping styles
- Available intwin, twin XL, full (double), queen, king, California king, and split king
Adjustable bed owners
Plant-based memory foam
Durable support core
Zoned transition layer
Save $300 on the Amerisleep AS3 with our discount code.
If you’re looking for a split king mattress that’s durable enough for the long haul and flexible enough to take any adjustable base, the Amerisleep AS3 might be the bed for you! This mattress isn’t just one of the most versatile and comfortable mattresses out there. It’s also better for the environment and more hypoallergenic than regular memory foam.
How Lying Down Feels
The AS3 boasts a special plant-based memory foam called Bio-Pur® foam. This material is more breathable and more responsive than traditional memory foam. That makes the AS3 cooling and moisture-wicking as well as bouncy.
This mattress is perfect for active sleepers and hot sleepers alike because it will regulate its temperature all night and spring back into place as soon as you move. The medium feel also makes this an excellent choice for combo sleepers and side sleepers who want a little extra support.
Inside the Mattress
The first layer of the AS3 is the breathable Bio-Pur® foam. This plant-based memory foam contours just like regular memory foam. So you don’t have to sacrifice pressure relief and cradling for responsiveness and breathability.
Underneath the cooling and bouncy Bio-Pur® foam, you’ll find the HIVE® transition layer. This layer offers five zones of targeted pressure relief to keep your spine in perfect alignment and offer ideal support to each area of your body.
The base layer of the AS3 is the ultra-firm Bio-Core® support foam. This foam offers tons of lift to keep you on top of the sleep surface. It also provides durable support to the upper layers to fight sagging and body impressions for a full 20 years!
SEE ALSO:Amerisleep Mattress Review
- Bio-Core® base foam offers at least two decades of longevity
- Medium feel offers lots of versatility for different sleep positions
- Bio-Pur® offers all the contoured comfort of traditional memory foam without heat retention or slow response time
- Not as bouncy as a hybrid
Best Twin XL Mattress: Vaya Mattress
- Mattress Type:Foam
- Mattress Height:12 inches
- Firmness:Medium (5 to 6 on the firmness scale)
- Best forbudget shoppers and others seeking bargain prices without sacrificing quality
- Available intwin, twin XL, full (double), queen, king, and California king
Shoppers on a budget
Sleepers with joint pain
Highly contouring foam
Save $300 on the Vaya Mattress with our discount code.
If you’re looking for a quality mattress that won’t break the bank, the Vaya Mattress is an excellent option. It offers all the comfort of responsive, open-cell memory foam and breathable fabric without a hefty price tag.
How Lying Down Feels
The Vaya is a medium-feel mattress, but with its highly contouring foam, it feels more like a medium-soft. This makes it fantastic for side sleepers and petite sleepers who need more cushioning but don’t want to lose all the lift in their mattress.
The open-cell construction and breathable fabric also give the Vaya a cool and breathable feel that’s perfect for hot sleepers. And the responsive Vaya Comfort Foam bounces right back into place to prevent body impressions.
Inside the Mattress
The Vaya Mattress keeps quality high and costs low by featuring only two layers of foam. The first layer is Vaya Comfort Foam. This foam is highly contouring and offers tons of pressure relief without taking forever to bounce back. That makes it perfect for sleepers with joint pain or pressure point sensitivity.
The second layer of the Vaya is the Vaya Base Foam. This high-density foam provides tons of spine-aligning support. It also makes the Vaya Mattress just as durable as many more expensive mattresses. You can expect this mattress to fight sagging and soft spots for at least a decade.
Both these layers are wrapped in a clean, plush cover. This cover is pleasantly soft and ultra-breathable to keep air flowing through the mattress and around your body all night.
SEE ALSO:Vaya Mattress Review
- Simple two-layer design keeps quality high and costs low
- Plush, breathable cover helps with temperature regulation
- Highly contouring foam offers optimum pressure relief
- Doesn’t feature additional cooling technologies
Other Bed Sizes
The standard twin size mattress is best for single adults who are under six feet tall. Parents may also choose a twin size mattress for younger children.
Dimensions of a Twin Mattress
The twin or single is 38 by 75 inches, making it the smallest standard bed size.
Room Size for a Twin Mattress
The dimensions of twin beds fit in the smallest rooms. If you push a twin bed against the wall, you can get it in a room as small as 5 by 7 feet. If you want furniture, you may need a couple of extra feet at the foot of the bed.
Alternatively, you can combine furniture and bed by relying on a twin size daybed.
SEE ALSO:Daybed Mattress vs. Twin Mattress: What’s the Difference?
Full size mattresses make perfect beds for single adults who want some extra wiggle room to toss and turn.
The dimensions of a full size bed are 54 by 75 inches.
Full size beds fit best in rooms that are at least 9 by 9 feet. Those who want bedroom furniture should bump it up to 10 by 10.
The queen size mattress is the most popular bed size because it’s the most versatile. A queen size bed can fit in just about any bedroom and accommodate single sleepers and couples alike.
The dimensions of a queen mattress is 60 by 80 inches, or five by just over 6.5 feet.
Queen size beds go best in rooms that are at least 10 by 10 feet. But they can fill out larger bedrooms as well, depending on how much furniture you use.
The California king mattress is the longest of the standard bed sizes, making it perfect for the ultra-tall.
California king mattresses take four inches off the width of the standard king and add it to the length for a total of 72 by 84 inches.
California king beds are a full six feet wide by seven feet long. So they need a room that’s absolutely no less than 10 by 10 feet. However, they fit better in 10 by 12-foot rooms and up.
Can I get a split California king bed?
You absolutely can get a split California king mattress. However, keep in mind that the split king and twin XL mattresses are both part of the standard size run. Split California kings are not. And there is no standard-size mattress that’s the same size as half a California king mattress.
That means split Cal kings have to be specially made for that purpose. There are manufacturers that make them, but they’re a specialty size and not part of the regular size run.
Are split kings and regular kings the same dimensions?
The split king mattress and the standard king mattress are both the exact same dimensions: 76 by 80 inches. The only difference between them is the split king mattress is actually two mattresses, while the regular king mattress is just one.
Do two twin xl mattresses make a split California king?
No, they don’t. Twin XL mattresses are 38 by 80 inches. That means the total dimensions for two of them come out to the standard king’s dimensions of 76 by 80 inches.
So if you try to put two twin XL mattresses in the same California king size bed frame, they will be both too wide and too short to fit. If you want a split Cal king, you’ll need two mattresses specifically made for that purpose.
What sheets will I need for a split king?
You shouldn’t put regular king fitted sheets on a split king mattress. That is a recipe for a ripped sheet, especially if you’re going to be using different adjustable base settings. You’ll need two twin XL fitted sheets along with a standard king flat sheet.
The good news is you don’t have to run out and buy three different sheet sets. Plenty of manufacturers make split king sheet sets that come with two fitted sheets, a single flat sheet, and two king pillowcases.
Do I need two different comforters for a split king?
You shouldn’t need two different pieces of bedding other than fitted sheets. For split kings, you should still be able to use the same flat sheet, same blanket, and same duvet or comforter for both sides of the bed. These items are not fitted around the mattress, so they won’t tear if the two mattresses start to slide apart or you change adjustable bed settings.
What’s the best mattress? That’s often a matter of what you need from the bed. Split king beds have tons of advantages because they allow couples to sleep in the same bed without sleeping in the same bed. They also have all the advantages of the twin XL mattress when it comes time to move.
Meanwhile, twin XL mattresses offer compactness and legroom all at once. That means tall single sleepers don’t have to sacrifice their comfort to fit their beds in a small space.
About the author
“Professional sleeper” Malik Karman is a freelance writer for the eachnight blog. Over the years, Malik has read countless medical studies and explored hundreds of different bedding products in an effort to better understand what goes into a restorative night’s rest. Malik curates many of our “best mattress” guides to assist readers in the mattress buying process.
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