King vs California King: What’s the Difference?

Choosing between King or California King mattress sizes might seem like an easy task, most people assume that a California King bed is bigger than a King bed but are they right?

Shopping for a new mattress can be a time consuming task but when armed with information, you can make an informed choice in a short amount of time. Save in the knowledge that you’ve chosen the best option for your sleep comfort.

How Do a King and California King Differ?


King Mattress

California King Mattress


80 Inches 

84 Inches


76 Inches

72 Inches

Total Sleep Area



Personal Space Per Adult

38 Inches (max 2 adults)

36 Inches (max 2 adults)

Best for Room Size

12x12 Square Feet

10x12 Square Feet

Best for Couple or Single




Plenty of space for a couple with children or pets

Great for taller couples


Can be a challenge to move the bed as it’s so big 

Requires a large bedroom




Nolah AirFoam™ Size Guide

What mattress size should I get? Learn more here


Dimensions (Inches)


10” Original 

Dimensions (Inches)


12” Signature




Twin XL












California King



King Mattress: Is it Right for Me?

Best for: A couple who enjoy lots of personal space in the bed and may allow a child or pet on the bed.

Total sleep area: 42ft²

Space per person: 38” 

Room size: To fit a King size bed (that is 76”x80”) that leaves floor space for two nightstands and a dresser. The bedroom should be a minimum of 12x12 square feet in size.      

A king size mattress provides plenty of personal space for a couple and equal to a Twin size mattress each in one King mattress. There’s a huge selection of bedding available for king mattresses that will express your taste and style. A king mattress provides so much cozy sleep space for a couple who may have a child or pet in the bed sometimes. 

The King size mattress dimensions are 76 inches wide by 80 inches long. With these dimensions, a couple will have plenty of space for themselves and small children or pets. The total sleep area is 42ft² and gives you 38 inches of personal space per adult. 

The Nolah AirFoam™ King size mattress provides premium sleep space, with plenty of room to move around. If you find the Queen size mattress a little small for your needs, a king mattress will bring more sleep comfort. 

California King Mattress: Is it Right for Me?

Best for: A tall couple or to fit a narrow room. For those want extra length instead of width. 

Total sleep area: 42ft²

Space per person: 36” 

Room size: To fit a California King size bed (that is 72”x84”) while allowing room for some extra furniture. The bedroom should be a minimum of 10x12 square feet in size because of the added length of the bed.   

A California King size mattress is considered a celebrity bed and is a great choice for tall people. 4 inches is taken from the width of a king size and added to the length of a California king mattress.   

The California king size mattress will provide a perfect sleep space if your bedroom is a little narrower than most. The California King mattress is 72 inches wide by 84 inches long. Tall adults will especially love these dimensions because their legs won’t hang from the bed!

With 36 inches of personal space per adult (max 2) and a sleep space of 42ft², the California king offers sleep comfort with the freedom to move around as much as you want without disturbing your partner. The Nolah AirFoam™ California King size mattress will suit a narrow room and provide a pleasant sleep space for a couple with small children or pets. 

What to Consider When Shopping Online for a Mattress

  1. Pressure relief: A pressure relieving mattress such as AirFoam™,  has the unique ability to counter your body in a supportive hug like no other mattress. The most vulnerable areas of the hips, shoulders, and back receive pressure relief that could result in greater quality of sleep and fewer aches and pains in the mornings. 
  2. Affordable: AirFoam™ king and California king mattresses range from $1,099 - $1,499 and are some of the lowest prices available online. Their breathable and durable construction makes them incredible value for money. 
  3. Mattress Trial: shopping online for a new mattress is convenient, saves time, and much less stressful than shopping in a physical store. Online mattress retailers ought to offer you at least 100-nights trial so you know for sure that it’s the right one for you.
  4. Free Delivery and Easy Returns: Opt for an online retailer who offers you free delivery and easy returns
  5. Lengthy Warranty: ensure your mattress comes with at least a 10-year warranty   


The main difference between a king and California king mattress is:

King Mattress

California King Mattress

Length 80 Inches 

Length 84 Inches

Width 76 Inches

Width 72 Inches

Therefore, if your bedroom is more narrow, opt for a California king if your bedroom is larger, either bed could fit the space.

Single sleepers may feel swallowed up in a king or California king bed and it may take longer to heat up. Single sleepers may find more comfort in a Queen or Full mattress.  Learn more in our King vs. Queen bed article.

Both king and California king size mattresses provide ample sleep space for couples who enjoy lots of room to move around during the night.