The 9 Best California King Mattresses Of 2022
A bigger mattress can be a total game-changer for those sleeping with a partner. The extra space allows both partners to sleep in their ideal sleep position without bumping elbows—and the swap could even reduce your need for a sleep divorce.
If you're battling in your sleep over crucial snooze territory but don't have the space for a king mattress, it's time for you to consider the best California king mattresses. This less conventional mattress size falls between a queen and king in square footage and has a few extra inches of length (i.e., it's a great bed for tall people).
While splurging on a larger bed may seem extraneous, sleep specialist and neuroscientist Christopher Winter, M.D., says there are plenty of benefits associated with a larger mattress.
"Farther away from your partner (if you like that) means less heat, less breathing sounds, and less transmitted movement," says Winter.
While these sleep disturbances may not seem like a big deal, they can have serious short- and long-term impacts on your health, including increased stress response, somatic issues, emotional distress, and memory and cognition issues, as well as an overall decrease in the quality of life.
Surveys also show that people sleep better on bigger mattresses and generally feel less discomfort or joint pain during the night, per Winter. Plus, there's simply more space for you and your partner—or your pets and kids—with a larger mattress.
Ready to upgrade your sleep space? Scroll on to learn all about California king mattresses—and our favorite picks based on quality, sustainability, and customer reviews.
What is a California king mattress?
A California king is narrower than a typical king mattress—but it makes up for the slimmer build with four extra inches of length added to the bottom. Also known as an Eastern king, it has overall dimensions of 84 inches long by 72 inches wide. This is slightly smaller square footage than a standard king, which is 80 inches long by 72 inches wide.
How we picked:
This is an especially important consideration if you're sleeping with a partner or have spine issues that can be exacerbated by a firm or soft mattress.
In addition to looking at the manufacturing and shipping processes, we prioritized GOLS-certified organic latex and GOTS-certified organic cotton.
Not only do we look for good reviews on the product, but we specifically searched for reviews that touted good experiences with customer service reps.
In addition to the materials and specific feel of the mattress, we searched for brands that believe in their products enough to offer sleep trials and generous warranties.
mbg's picks for the best California king mattresses of 2022:
Best latex: Avocado Latex Mattress
- GOLS organic certified natural latex
- Entirely biodegradable
Not only is this Avocado mattress the very best pick for the environment on our list, but it also feels great to snooze on. Firmer than other mattress types, it's made with a GOLS organic certified natural latex that contours to your body. Known for its sustainability, the material manages to offer just the right amount of bounce while still maintaining a firm feel.
A greener pick than memory foam, latex also better holds its shape and is fully biodegradable—but it's also pricey. A California king from Avocado will set you back nearly $4,000, but it's a sound investment for those wanting to snooze in peace.
Best adjustable: Saatva Solaire Adjustable Firmness Mattress
- 50 firmness settings on each side
- CertiPUR-US® certified foams
- Hidden inflator
- One of the pricier options
If you and your partner require something completely different from your bed—they're a back sleeper and you snooze firmly on your side—then Saatva's adjustable mattress is the ultimate match. Although more expensive than other options, the luxurious pick offers 50 different firmness options.
Use the hidden inflator button to inflate (or deflate) the air chambers located in the top layer to reach the desired firmness. When paired with six layers of CertiPUR-US® certified foams, you get the ultimate oasis for snoozing. Plus, the split designs can even be used with an adjustable base for the ultimate customization.
Best cooling: Purple Plus Mattress
- Nontoxic and hypoallergenic
- Draws heat away from the body
- Contains memory foam
You won't find any other mattress quite like this Purple pick—and it's all due to the brand's proprietary GelFlex grid. The unique grid layer has open squares that allow maximum airflow, keeping the Plus mattress cool despite its primarily memory foam makeup.
Both adaptive and supportive, it features a solid dense foam base layered with premium comfort foam under the grid. This gives a medium-firm feel with plenty of cushioning and pressure relief, although it has less support than the brand's hybrid model.
You'll have 100 nights to decide whether the Plus is right for you, but if the reviews are any indication, you'll also be impressed. More than 31,000 shoppers have reviewed this cooling mattress, yet it's still earned a solid 4.4 out of 5 stars.
Best under $1,000: Nolah Original 10"
- Comes with two free pillows
- Super lightweight
- Low VOC
- Fully memory foam
Unlike typical memory foam, this mattress is made with Nolah's proprietary AirFoam, which consists of 100% temperature-neutral materials. Not only will you stay cool, but tiny air bubbles integrated into the foam better distribute body weight to prevent a deep-sinking feeling on heavier limbs.
Optimal for side sleepers, it's made with four layers of the foam, which retain their shape over time. And at 85 pounds, it's also by far the lightest mattress option on this list.
Best for side sleepers: Ghostbed 3D Matrix
- Comes with two free pillows
- Super lightweight
- Low VOC
Side sleepers need to prioritize mattresses that offer cushioning at the hip joint, and this hybrid mattress does just that. It pairs a layer of durable coils with seven layers of gel, making the mattress both soft and supportive. Bonus: There's even reinforced edge support to prevent unwanted slipping off the sides.
While the gel-polymer-infused foam layer almost earned this mattress the top spot for keeping you cool, the layer of contouring transition foam ultimately landed this 12-inch pick a top spot for side sleepers.
Best memory foam: Casper Original Mattress
- Foams are CertiPUR-US® certified
- Multi-zoned support
- Easy shipping in a small box
- Memory foam isn't environmentally sustainable
With three zones of support, this is the perfect choice for those who want to prioritize their spinal alignment. The foam around the hips is firmer, while the foam at the shoulders is much softer. As a result, it's a great option for back sleepers. Plus, it's recommended by Consumer Reports, which is a testament to the fast and responsive customer service offered by the brand.
While memory foam isn't the best for the environment, Casper has done everything possible to make sure it's causing the least harm. This includes the fact that all foams are low VOC and CertiPUR-US® certified, which means that they don't include any ozone-harming phthalates.
Best firm: Helix Twilight
- Lots of add-ons available
- Coils allow the mattress to give
- Too tough for side sleepers
Full transparency: This is not the most sustainable option on the market; however, it's an optimal option for those who want maximum support. The innerspring base provides support and allows for airflow, while layers of poly memory foam add much-needed pressure relief.
Designed to accommodate side sleepers, it's worth noting that some of the reviewers felt it didn't offer enough cushioning. However, a cooling cover and reinforced sides still make this popular pick worth considering, especially for those needing a firmer option.
Best hybrid: Nest Bedding Sparrow Signature Hybrid
- Lifetime renewal exchange
- Free exchange to another feel
- Contains memory foam
Sometimes you think a mattress is the perfect fit—and then you realize it may be causing you aches or pains. Nest has you covered; the brand will send you additional foam layers to help adjust the firmness of the mattress to suit your sleep preferences. Plus, it'll also send you a new mattress when this one wears out.
The hybrid option uses both memory foam and coils, which means it offers optimal motion isolation. Another perk? All foams are CertiPUR-US® and allowed time to air out in the factory, which limits off-gassing in your home.
Best split California king: The Winkbed
- Lifetime warranty
- Customizable firmness
- Memory foam isn't environmentally sustainable
Equal parts supportive and plush, this mattress is the closest thing you'll find to a luxurious hotel-bed feel. It pairs a layer of individually wrapped innerspring coils with a gel-infused foam pillow top available in a variety of firmness options. This allows you to choose the firmness that's best tailored to your needs, whether you're a back, stomach, or side sleeper.
While the brand doesn't stand out on the sustainability front—you won't find any special credentials listed on the site—it does have stellar customer reviews. If you're not a fan, the 120-night trial will be a standout; if you are a fan, you'll be grateful for the lifetime warranty. Better yet, it was also one of our standout picks for the best mattresses for hip pain and low-back pain.
Types of mattresses.
There are lots of different materials out there, and it's important to find the one that's best suited to your sleep style:
- Latex: Typically on the firmer side with just the right amount of bounce, a latex mattress is one of the most environmentally friendly options.
- Memory foam: Typically made from polyurethane foam, a memory foam mattress offers pressure relief at an affordable price. Plus, it's a great material for partners, as it has limited motion transfer.
- Hybrid mattress: Hybrid mattresses combine at least two different types of materials, typically foil and innerspring coils. The best of both worlds, a hybrid mattress is often a top pick for side sleepers.
- Innerspring: Most of us have probably snoozed on an innerspring mattress at some point; they provide a bouncy base with plenty of support from individual coils or grouped bases. Not only is this model often the most affordable, but it also allows for maximum airflow to keep you cool.
Is a California king worth it?
Larger mattresses are more conducive to a relaxing night of sleep if you have a partner, per Dr. Winter. In addition to experiencing less movement transfer, you’ll sleep cooler and be exposed to less noise from your partner. Anyone sleeping solo with enough space in a full or queen bed may want to skip the extra expense.
How much does a California king bed cost?
There isn’t a large price difference between a California king and traditional king mattress due to their similar square footage; prices start around $500 on the lower end and increase up to about $1,500.
Is a California king or king better?
Both the available square footage in your bedroom and the height of you (and your partner) will best determine which bed type is right for you. Anyone on the taller side will appreciate the few extra inches of length offered by a California king—but it comes with the small sacrifice of a few inches of width. Those with less square footage for a bed will also appreciate the slightly smaller square footage taken up by a California king.
How can a California king mattress help with sleep?
The extra square footage can prevent sleep disturbances from your partner throughout the night, such as movement, noise, and heat. As a result, you won’t have to deal with the negative short- and long-term impacts of sleep disturbances, which include increased stress response, a decline in cognitive ability, and a decrease in overall quality of life.
It's safe to say that once you've upgraded to a California king mattress, you'll never look back. Not only do they provide extra space for snoozing, but they also allow for more movement isolation to prevent you and your partner from disturbing each other. Luckily, they come in a range of options for different sleep styles and budgets.
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Brittany Loggins is a freelance writer covering health, wellness, and all things lifestyle. She spent time on staff at CBSNews.com and TODAY.com, where she wrote about everything from breaking news to the best scented candles. Brittany is a graduate of the University of Georgia with a Bachelor’s degree in consumer journalism—and you can still find her cheering on the Bulldogs every single chance she gets.