Comparison of Futon Mattresses

Futons aren't just for the dorm room anymore.

The Original

Find the right futon mattress.Find the right futon mattress.
Considering these versatile pieces of furniture have become a common choice for people of all ages, it comes as no surprise that the choices for futon mattresses are as varied as the uses for futons themselves.

Many do not realize that the futon originated in Japan. According to Premier Futon Mattress.com, the original futon was a thin, frameless mat spread over rice straw that could be folded and easily stored. Now, as the futon has taken hold in Western culture, the futon mattress is available in several different sizes and shapes and can be made from several different materials.

What Sets Them Apart

Not all futon mattresses are created equally. According to Futon Mattress Info.com, the only quality that truly sets futon mattresses apart is the craftsmanship and materials used. The site goes on to say that the best futon mattresses use cotton, wool, organic cotton or latex as futon material.

Size

Futon mattresses can come in nine different sizes. Futons.net lists these sizes as ranging from twin size (39 inches by 75 inches) to a large king size (78 inches by 80 inches). Size obviously depends on personal preference and what room the futon will be used in.

Materials

One of the most important factors to consider when choosing a futon mattress is what material the mattress is stuffed with. Cotton and cotton foam mattresses are common choices, according to Premier Futon Mattress.com, but they are prone to collecting moisture and "lumping up." Routinely airing these mattresses out and flipping them will usually help alleviate these problems.

More Materials

The options for futon mattresses do not end with cotton. As wool is a natural insulator, the material is great for futon mattresses. However, according to Premier Futon Mattress.com, many people have a wool allergy, making wool mattresses a rarity. Polyester foam mattresses are another option to consider because of how long they last. Premier Futon Mattress.com reports that the mattresses are surrounded by a thin layer of cotton, so while they are comfortable they can be almost too firm for some.

Try Before You Purchase

The best way to test for your personal taste is to sit and/or lay on a friend's futon or a store model. According to Futons.net, this is the best method for finding a good futon mattress, but knowing the different materials and what to expect from them is a great head start in the selection process.

About the Author

Michael Staton began contributing professionally to several papers in South Carolina during 2005. He writes for "Upstate Be" magazine, covering local bands and writing his own weekly Internet column. He is also co-editor of a service industry magazine called "Industry." Staton holds a Bachelor of Arts in media studies from the College of Charleston.