Buying the right comforter size for your bed can require some planning. The specifications offered by mattress and bedding manufacturers may not always match up exactly—or even acceptably. Comforters are measured to cover the standard size of mattresses with extra material on each side, but even with the same label, two comforters can have significantly different sizes. 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, then find that it is too small (most common) or too large (less common) for your particular mattress. With the right measurements, you can ensure you get the right comforter size for your bed.
Review Comforter Size Guidelines
Although mattress sizes are standardized, comforter sizes are not. Below, find common bed, mattress, and comforter sizes in inches to determine which comforters are right for your needs.
|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 some manufacturers will 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, so you will have 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's mattress size. 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. For example, king comforters are bigger than queen sizes, but a thick mattress will make less material hang over each side. If your mattress is thick, 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 full/queen 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 full/queen, you may find that it is not quite wide enough to cover your bed adequately.
Full- and queen-sized comforters are not the same size: If a full/queen comforter is too small for your queen bed, shop specifically for the queen comforter size, or at least make sure the comforter you choose 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, then 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, 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 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.
The comforter size for a queen bed usually starts at 86 inches wide, while oversized queen comforters are about 98 inches wide. A standard king comforter is 96 inches wide, and oversized options 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 more visually pleasing for the comforter to overlap the skirt than for it to fall short. Many people also choose to put king comforters on queen beds to increase the width, as king and queen mattresses are the same length.