5 signs you and your partner need a split king mattress — plus our top 3 recommendations

Woman looks at her sleeping partner in bed
(Image credit: Getty/Maskot)

A king mattress is the ideal size for a lot of couples, but some couples find a split king mattress is better for them. If you and your partner suspect your standard king bed isn't working for both of you, then there are some common signs that tell you to switch to split king mattress instead. 

Split king mattresses have grown in popularity in recent years, and many of the beds featured in our best mattress guide come in a split king. A split king mattress can alleviate a lot of issues experienced by couples when bed-sharing, especially if you and your partner are very different sleepers.

Here, we'll break down the common signs that you and your partner will benefit from switching to a split king mattress. Plus, if you spot any of these signs, we'll show you the best split king mattresses to buy in this month's mattress sales.

What is a split king mattress?

A diagram showing the measurements of a split king mattress

(Image credit: DreamCloud Sleep)

Like the best king mattresses, a split king bed is a mattress that measures 76 inches wide by 80 inches long. The only difference between a standard king and a split king is that a split king mattress comprises of two separate twin XL mattresses to form one big king-size bed. 

5 signs you need a split king mattress

1. Your partner's movements are waking you up

If your partner is a restless sleeper or operates on a different sleep schedule to you, it's likely that their movements have woken you up. While a lot of mattresses have strong motion isolation to absorb movements, light sleepers will still likely feel their partner getting up early or tossing and turning in the middle of the night. 

The beauty of a split king bed is that your partner sleeps on a separate mattress to you, so you won't feel their movements. This means your partner can get up early or come to bed late without worrying if it will disturb your sleep. 

2. Only one of you finds your mattress comfortable

A woman sits up in bed while her partner still sleeps

(Image credit: Getty Images)

If your partner is a stomach sleeper but you prefer sleeping on your side, your partner will find a medium-plush mattress is too soft and leaving them with lower back pain. Meanwhile, you may find a firm mattress too hard. You'll also need different firmness levels if you have different body weights, with heavy people needing something firm and supportive. 

That's where a split-king mattress comes in handy. Two separate mattresses means that you can customize the firmness levels on each side of the split-king bed, meaning that you can have a softer feel while your partner can have a firmer mattress. 

3. You sleep warmer or cooler than your partner

A woman lies in bed next to her partner because she is unable to sleep

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Some conditions such as menopause or hyperthyroidism may leave you or your partner feeling overheated at night, leading to night sweats and insomnia. This can lead to other problems if you live in a cool climate and one of you feels chilly at night and needs a bed that feels cosy instead of the best cooling mattress

A split king mattress can allow you to add temperature control to one mattress, such as a cooling topper or a heat-dissipating cover made from special cooling material such as Tencel, GlacioTex, or Phase Change Material. 

4. You have different health conditions

Image shows a Saatva Classic Split King Mattress on a beige fabric bedframe in a neutral colour bedroom

(Image credit: Saatva)

A lot of health conditions may affect your sleep and what mattress type you need, including sleep apnoea, injury, pregnancy, or mobility issues. The problem can also be exacerbated if your partner doesn't share the same issues as you.

Luckily, split king mattresses pair well with adjustable bed bases, allowing you to change the position of your mattress without affecting the position of your partner's. For example, if your partner snores or is pregnant, they can adjust their mattress to the zero gravity position to alleviate their symptoms.   

5. You still like sharing a bed 

Two women laugh and talk while lying on a split king mattress

(Image credit: Getty Images)

If you sleep differently to your partner but still love sharing a bed, then having two separate beds (or even bedrooms) will not only cost more money but will also get rid of your closeness.

A split king mattress will allow you both to sleep on separate, individualized mattresses while still sleeping in the same bed as each other. This allows you to customize your comfort without going through a sleep divorce. It's especially great for fans of the Scandinavian Sleep Method

Top 3 Split king mattress deals

1. Saatva Classic Hybrid Split King or Split Cal King Mattress: $2,990 $2,542 for a split king at Saatva

1. Saatva Classic Hybrid Split King or Split Cal King Mattress: $2,990 $2,542 for a split king at Saatva
Our Saatva Classic mattress review deemed the fiberglass-free Saatva Classic the best hybrid mattress in the world thanks to its customizable firmness options. It comes in both a split king and split California king, so you can have different firmness levels on each side of the bed. The current Saatva mattress sale takes $448 off a split king or split Cal king Saatva Classic, reducing the price to $2,5420 (was $2,990). The Saatva Classic also comes with a 365-night trial, lifetime warranty and free white glove delivery with old bed removal.

2. Brooklyn Bedding Signature Hybrid Split Cal King Mattress:$1,664 $1,164 at Brooklyn Bedding

2. Brooklyn Bedding Signature Hybrid Split Cal King Mattress: $1,664 $1,164 at Brooklyn Bedding
Our Brooklyn Bedding Signature Hybrid mattress review praised the soft, medium and firm options, so you can get a split-Cal king where you both you and your partner can have different individualized firmness levels. The hybrid is now 25% off, with a split-Cali king now $1,164.

3. DreamCloud Hybrid Mattress Split King Mattress: $2,178 $1,090 at DreamCloud Sleep
 DreamCloud'sAdjustable Bed Bundle. 

3. DreamCloud Hybrid Mattress Split King Mattress: $2,178 $1,090 at DreamCloud Sleep
Our DreamCloud mattress review loved the luxe feel at a more affordable price, earning the hybrid a spot in our best luxury mattress guide, and it's available in a split king, too. Luckily, there's a permanent DreamCloud mattress sale that knocks 50% off this mattress, bringing a split king to $1,090. We also reccomend pairing it with DreamCloud's Adjustable Bed Bundle

Frances Daniels
Sleep Staff Writer

Frances Daniels is a Sleep Staff Writer at Tom's Guide and her role includes covering all mattress and sleep news, in addition to mattress reviews and buyer's guides, plus sleep accessories such as pillows and mattress toppers. Frances is a PPA-accredited journalist and is hugely interested in the relationship between good sleep and overall health. When not writing about mattresses and sleep for Tom's Guide, Frances enjoys writing about women's issues, health and wellbeing, the environment, and her native Wales.