1. What is Futon?

1. What is Futon?

A futon mattress is the type of bedding used by traditional Japanese people. It’s not as thick and reliable as the mattress with which we grew up. It looks like a thick comforter that has been intentionally built as a bed with no need for a bed frame, just a wall. The brilliant thing about futons is that it saves a lot of room.

Here are the standard styles and designs of futon frames and beds:

  • Bi-fold: When positioned in the upright position, it mimics a sofa with the futon mattress folded up. The structure with the mattress can also be put perfectly flat on the floor. This model allows the frame to support sleeping and non-sleeping areas. You can use bifold frames for any size of futon mattresses.
  • Tri-fold: Same with the bi-fold frame, the tri-fold frame can act as a daytime sofa and a bed. These frames have three different parts – a back, a chair, and a footrest. If it has a mattress on it, the frame can fold in two ways. Tri-fold frames are usually paired with thinner futon mattresses.
  • Loveseat: A futon loveseat frame can be positioned upright as a couch, or a completely flat for nighttime. Also, loveseat frames can be put into a reclining position if you want to read a good book or binge-watch your favorite series.
  • Bunk bed: These frames are designed with one elevated bed over a bifold or a loveseat futon frame. Bunk beds are most recommended for dorm rooms.

2. When are they best used?

When buying a futon mattress, bear in mind that it’s two in one item. In some instances, it can serve as a couch, while in others, it’s going to be a bed. So, you have to ensure the futon mattress is flexible to play both of these roles well. 

Futons are best used as a temporary sleeping facility. They can serve as perfectly good sleeping spaces till your new mattress arrives.

3. When was it first introduced?

It wasn’t until the seventeenth century when cotton bedding would develop into the futon. In Japan, “bed clothes” were made by filling the fabric with cotton and fleece, and spreading them out on a special kind of ground surface known as “tatami.” Tatami was a couple of mats made of rice straw and composed of a large portion of the ground surface in Japanese homes.

With this, the Japanese created an incredibly light and durable mattress for resting, then roll it up and store it away upon waking up. The term “futon” came from the Japanese word “bedding,” which means long-staple cotton, a premium cotton ball. Using long-staple cloth was essential because it would keep the mattress from tugging apart and in the prevention of lumps.

4. Where to buy?

Where you choose to buy it from can make it a little easier to purchase a futon mattress. Some stores do an excellent job of arranging the futons and providing great product descriptions and reviews. Your decision can be made far easier by having a visual idea of the product.

Whether you’re planning to buy futon mattress online or from a physical store, there are plenty of choices for you. Still, not all of them are made equal. Look at this distributor list and see which one would work best for you.

5. How to use it?

An important aspect of getting a good night’s sleep is looking after your mattress. You should set an alarm that reminds you to regularly rotate the mattress. Turn it from head to toe and turn it back to front. For all kinds of mattresses, moisture is a great enemy.

Avoiding excess moisture could very well mean increasing the lifespan of the mattress. If possible, you can dry your futon in the sun or air deck. Additionally, one of the greatest things you can do to keep your mattress safe from bodily fluids is to use a mattress protector. 

6. Cost?

Futon mattresses are a great budget choice because, for a lower price, you can find premium-quality beds. Mid-priced futons are popular as they can last longer without much wear and tear.

Mid-priced futon is perfect for everyone as it is durable and inexpensive. It would cost you anything around $300 to $700. 

7. Lifespan

Unfortunately, mattresses like futon do not last that long. On average, futon mattress appears to have below-average durability. Though with proper care, it may last up to 5 years.

8. Pros and Cons



Traditionally, futon beds and mattresses are cheaper than regular beds. The materials used to make these flexible cushions like cotton, rubber, and polyester, are inexpensive. Also, you don’t necessarily need a bed frame to use this. 

Help you save space

For someone who doesn’t have much living space, it’s a practical choice. During the daytime, you can roll it up and into a sitting area and pull it back to sleep at night. Using it in a guest bedroom is also a wise choice – even if room serves as a workspace for you.

Can pull off different looks

By modifying the cover of your futon, you can quickly change the look in your bedroom. Also, frames can be swapped easily. For a traditional look, choose wood and metal for a minimalistic look. Because futons and their parts are so cheap, you won’t break your bank with an entirely new design.

Easy to clean up

Usually, a traditional Japanese futon is produced of 100% cotton, which implies it’s easy to wash. Accidentally pour your drink on mattress? A quick trip to the dry cleaner can solve your problems. 


Prone to wear and tear

A typical futon mattress is composed of two parts: the bottom part and the top part, which is the quilted bedcover. Nonetheless, traditional variants of futons are made of one entire portion, which is usually made of cotton or wool.

That causes a problem as it quickly flattens to the ground. Sure, it takes a lot of wear and tear, but you’ll finally be just centimeters away from your bedroom floor.

Unable to support weight in the long run

Except when your futon is composed of polyfoam, you can expect to experience uneven weight distribution in the long term. You see, the compressed pieces of cotton or wool become clustered and stiff, which can make it uncomfortable for you when you lay down.

Restricted level of comfort

The level of satisfaction of futon mattresses can go much further than saying it is comfortable. Although it can help you get you through the evening, you can’t be absolutely satisfied while you rest. It’s only average and just enough. Since its priority is being an item to sleep on, it does the job, but not with high marks.