Buying the right comforter size for your bed can be harder than you imagine because the specifications offered by mattress and bedding manufacturers may not match up exactly—or even acceptably. Matching a comforter to a queen-sized bed can be particularly vexing, in part because some manufacturers view double (full) and queen comforters as being interchangeable, while other manufacturers do not.
What Is a Bed Comforter?
Similar to a duvet, a comforter is a thick, quilted blanket that's usually filled with synthetic filler.
It is not unusual to purchase a comforter, only to then find it is too small (most common) or too large (less common) for your particular mattress. Take a look at some ways you make sure you get the right-sized comforter for your bed.
Review Comforter Size Guidelines
Although mattress sizes are standardized, comforter sizes are not.
|Bed Size||Mattress Measures||Standard Comforter Widths||Standard Comforter Lengths|
|Crib||28 by 52 inches||28 to 36 inches||46 to 52 inches|
|Twin||39 by 75 inches||66 to 68 inches||86 to 88 inches|
|Double/Full||53 by 75 inches||81 to 84 inches||86 to 88 inches|
|Queen||60 by 80 inches||86 to 88 inches||96 to 100 inches|
|King (Standard/Eastern)||76 or 78 by 80 inches||102 inches||86 to 88 inches|
|California King||72 by 84 inches||107 to 110 inches||96 to 98 inches|
These sizes are only guidelines, and it is common for some manufacturers to either add a few extra inches or shave inches off of these "standard" sizes. Be especially careful about very fluffy comforters, such as those filled with down. These tend to puff out the fabric, and you will have even less coverage than the dimensions listed on the package.
Match a Comforter to Your Mattress
The standard size categories offer a starting point for selecting a comforter that matches your bed mattress. Keep in mind that within each category, comforters can come in a range of lengths and widths, so pay attention to the thickness of your mattress. If your mattress is on the thick side, look for a comforter at the top range of the dimension range—or in some cases, jump up to the next category.
Choosing the right comforter size tends to be trickiest with a full-sized or queen-sized bed since manufacturers often confuse their sizing standards by claiming their comforters are sized for both mattresses. In practice, if you purchase a queen comforter labeled for a full/queen bed for your full-sized bed, the edges may fall closer to the floor than you wish. Similarly, if you have a queen-sized bed and you purchase a comforter labeled as full/queen, you may find that it is not quite wide enough to cover your bed adequately. If happens, shop specifically for the queen comforter size, or at least make sure the full/queen comforter you are considering is on the wider side (86 to 88 inches instead of 84 inches).
Account for Mattress Thickness
Finding the right-fitting comforter may depend on the thickness of your mattress, as well. Standard and older mattresses average between 9 inches and 12 inches deep, which means they will work with most standard comforter sizes. If you have a particularly thin bed—a futon or the like—you probably can get away with a narrower comforter, since you need less of it to cover the sides of your bed.
Mattress thicknesses vary widely by manufacturer, although thicker mattresses are far more common. Newer, pillow-top mattresses can be as deep as 14 to 20 inches, requiring a considerably wider comforter to cover the sides of the mattress completely.
One good way to determine what you need is by taking simple measurements. Take the top dimension of your mattress and add the thickness of the mattress to the length and to each side of the comforter dimensions. This should ensure that the comforter drapes down fully over the end and sides of the mattress. For example, a twin bed mattress that is 39 inches wide and 75 inches long and 12 inches thick, will need a comforter that is 63 inches wide (12 inches on each side) and 87 inches long in order to fully cover the sides and the bottom end of the mattress. A few extra inches might be even better, especially if the comforter is on the puffy side.
Get an Oversized Comforter
Due to the popularity of deeper, pillow-top mattresses, some manufacturers offer "oversized queen" and "oversized king" comforter sizes in addition to their standard sizes. These comforters offer more width for their length. In the case of queen comforters, they are usually about 98 inches wide, and for king comforters, they are about 115 inches wide. If you want a wide comforter but do not want to jump up to the next standard size, this option can be a good compromise.
It is generally fine for the comforter to be slightly oversized so it hangs below the bottom of the mattress. The space between the bottom of the mattress and the floor may be covered with a bed skirt or ruffle, and it is visually more pleasing for the comforter to overlap the skirt than for it to fall short.