California King vs. King Beds

Dimensions & Differences

Understanding the Difference Between King & California King Bed Sizes

Expansive and luxurious, king and California king beds offer plenty of room for stretching out and sleeping in regal comfort. To choose between these two mattress sizes, you’ll need to understand their individual dimensions and learn which model suits your sleep style, budget and space. From there, you can pick compatible frames and furniture to design a chic bedroom that’s fit for royalty.

Overview

In this article, we’ll offer helpful information and tips on:

King vs. California King Dimensions: What is the Difference Between King and Cal King?

Many people understand that a Cal king is bigger than a regular king mattress. However, when considering California king vs. king bed sizes, knowing each model’s exact measurements makes it easier to find the perfect fit for your layout. King size bed dimensions measure 76 inches by 80 inches, while the California king bed size is 72 inches long and 84 inches wide.

King Mattress Dimensions

Some king mattress brands:

Cal King vs. King Comfort Factors

Though there is only a four-inch difference between king and California king dimensions, that small distinction can have a massive impact on your comfort. So, how do you decide which size bed would work best for you? Think about the following factors to help you choose between a king or Cal king mattress.

California King Mattress Dimensions

Body Type

Depending on your height, you’re likely to find one of these mattress sizes more comfortable than the other. The king-size mattress is the wider of the two and accommodates sleepers up to six feet tall. Those who are over six feet in height may find their toes or ankles dangling over the edge of a king bed, making the longer Cal king model a better fit.

King and California king beds are smart options for those who need a little more room to stretch out while sleeping.
King and California king beds are smart options for those who need a little more room to stretch out while sleeping.

Sleep Position

The way you sleep plays an important role in choosing between king or California king mattresses as well. Back and stomach sleepers who like to stretch out for bed will enjoy the roomy dimensions of a California king. On the other hand, the smaller king-size option works well for people who curl up and rest on their sides.

Sharing the Bed or Sleeping Solo

Sometimes, the king-size vs. California king decision comes down to how many people are sharing the bed. A longer Cal king gives pets their own spot to sleep at the foot of the bed. If you sleep alone, the choice is mostly a matter of preference.

King-size beds offer more room than full or queen mattresses, making them a smart choice for those who share the bed during the night.
King-size beds offer more room than full or queen mattresses, making them a smart choice for those who share the bed during the night.

More comfy king bed options:

Cal King vs. King: Choosing Based on Prices, Movability and Room Size

Even if your mattress quiz results recommend one of these mattresses over the other, there are a few more issues to think about before you decide. Consider the following points to help you choose a king or Cal king mattress that fits your budget as well as your space.

Purchasing a bedding collection that includes a comforter, shams and throw pillows is a chic way for budget-conscious shoppers to decorate their bed.
Purchasing a bedding collection that includes a comforter, shams and throw pillows is a chic way for budget-conscious shoppers to decorate their bed.
A compact bed-in-a-box makes it easy to move a large mattress throughout your home.
A compact bed-in-a-box makes it easy to move a large mattress throughout your home.

Bed-in-a-box types:

Cal King vs. King Compatible Bedroom Sizes

Before buying a mattress, it’s important to make sure that your purchase will fit inside your bedroom. If you’re decorating a guest room that measures 13 x 13 feet, select a short, wide king-size bed to fit the layout and leave room for other furniture. Longer Cal king beds work better if you’re decorating a bedroom with at least 17 x 18 feet of floor space.

Pairing your king or California king mattress with a unique, practical bed frame is a smart way to free up space and help your bed fit the room. Skip the 9-drawer dressers and choose a king-size storage bed to hold clothes and bedding. Rather than using nightstands, hang wall-mounted shelves above a low-profile platform frame instead.

Use storage bed frames to make the most of limited space in rooms with large king or California king beds.
Use storage bed frames to make the most of limited space in rooms with large king or California king beds.

Additional king bed frame choices:

 

Design Ideas for a California King or King Bedroom

These two bed sizes come in a wide range of styles, so either option can be a chic complement to your layout. Whether you’re looking to create an upbeat, dynamic vibe or a more laid-back look, you can find the colors, materials and designs you need to create a bedroom sanctuary that suits your tastes. Consider these ideas for a comfy and gorgeous king or Cal king bedroom design.

  • Traditional Design: The grand, sophisticated look of classic decor enhances the opulent feel of a king or Cal king bedroom. When selecting your traditional king or California king bed, consider a model with a dignified dark wood finish. Choose a poster or sleigh frame for an extra elegant touch and complete the look with a traditional dresser, chest of drawers and set of nightstands.
  • Modern Style: Clean lines, natural materials and functional features are hallmarks of this design. Outfit your space using a Cal king or king-size modern bed with storage drawers and an upholstered frame for added softness. For quick and easy decorating, buy a complete modern king bedroom set and use a modern rug, mirror and chandelier to tie the look together.
  • Contemporary Layout: Contemporary style focuses on unique shapes, bold hues and soft fabrics. Choose a contemporary king or Cal king bed set with button tufting, chrome accents and rhinestone detailing for your glamorous bedroom. Add a chest of drawers and a vanity table to up the posh, practical look of the room, then use throw pillows and padded benches for a pop of color.
Pairing benches with California king and king-size beds elevates your room's style and makes the space feel even more opulent.
Pairing benches with California king and king-size beds elevates your room's style and makes the space feel even more opulent.

Other stylish king bedroom sets: