A headboard can be the focal point of a bedroom and one of the most significant items of furniture in a home. Like bed frames, headboards come in a wide range of styles, from traditional to modern and everything in between.
Your choice of headboard will be informed by how you’ll use it, your individual aesthetic, and your budget. But with so many options to choose from, how do you decide which one is best for you? Keep reading. I tested headboards in a number of different categories to help you find the perfect model for your needs and personal style. Below are my top four picks.
Zinus Jessica Modern Studio Headboard
My choice for editor’s pick is the Zinus Modern Studio Upholstered Metal Headboard. This contemporary padded gray headboard is constructed with a sleek black metal frame in twin-king sizes. The Jessica is offered in three modern classic styles — upholstered, button tufted, and banded. This model is covered by a 5 year warranty and comes ready to assemble.
- Design. The Jessica’s clean aesthetic could fit effortlessly in just about any decor. I tested the upholstered style, which looked modern and chic in my bedroom with both simple white and floral bedding
- Easy-to-assemble. I had this headboard assembled and ready to attach to my bed frame less than 15 minutes after unboxing it
- Price. In addition to being smartly designed and easy to put together, The Jessica headboard is a great deal
- Missing a part. I was able to get this headboard together without one of the bolts, but it may not be as sturdy as it would have been otherwise
- Slightly wider than my frame. I was able to make it work — barely. Be sure to measure your frame carefully to make sure this headboard will fit with your mattress and bed frame
The Zinus Jessica Modern Studio Headboard has a clean aesthetic could fit effortlessly in just about any decor.
Modway Lily Tufted Headboard
My choice for best classic headboard goes to the Modway Lily Tufted Linen Fabric Upholstered Headboard. This plushly padded headboard has a timeless look with a bit of modern edge that would accent almost any bedroom. Made from tufted polyester linen fabric and black metal legs, the Lily comes in navy, gray, beige, and ivory.
- Comfort. This cushioned headboard doesn’t just look cozy, it was my favorite place (sorry, sofa!) for binge-watching and phone-scrolling during a long holiday weekend
- Smart looks. I tested the gray version of this headboard, which gave my bedroom a stylish feel with a warm traditional vibe
- Adjustable. The Lily comes with 7 height adjustable mounting positions, making it an option for just about any bed frame
- Wobbly legs. The legs on this headboard felt a little less stable than I might have liked, which may be an issue for buyers who like a bed with a solid, heavy feel
- Awkward attachment. Connecting this headboard to my bed frame wasn’t as simple a process as I expected, and may not be durable over time
The Modway Lily Tufted Headboard has a stylish feel with a warm traditional vibe.
Best for Style
LUCID Mid-Rise Upholstered Headboard
My pick for best style is the LUCID Mid-Rise Upholstered Headboard. This upholstered headboard comes in four color options — stone, pearl, charcoal, and cobalt. The LUCID is also available in both diamond and square tufting options. The headboard includes all parts and instructions, and comes with a 5 year warranty.
- Design. The LUCID Mid-Rise headboard put me in mind of a high-end hotel room when I added bedding and pillows. The tufted headboard is well-padded, cozy, and made for lounging
- Mounting options. This model comes with wall mounts, pre-drilled legs, and modification plates for multiple attachment options
- Warranty. A generous lifetime warranty sets this headboard apart from many others in this price range
- Bolts. One of the bolts was an odd size, which necessitated a quick trip to the hardware store before I could finish setting this headboard up
- Rickety wall mount. The LUCID didn’t attach as securely to the wall as I would have expected, which may be an issue for some buyers
The LUCID Mid-Rise Upholstered Headboard comes in four color options, is well-padded, cozy, and made for lounging.
Flash Furniture Bedford Headboard
My choice for best bargain is the Flash Furniture Bedford Upholstered Headboard. The attractive box stitch design and wide variety of color options make this headboard tough to pass up, especially at this price. The Flash Furniture headboard can be purchased in twin-king sizes and comes with a 5-year limited warranty.
- Stitching. I was immediately impressed by the workmanship on this headboard’s upholstery, which looked durable and well-crafted
- Price. An upholstered headboard of this quality and style is hard to beat at this price
- Color options. No matter what your color preference, the Bedford could fit the bill. This may be the only upholstered headboard I tried with 12 color options
- Smell. This headboard took a bit of airing out, which could be an issue for folks with respiratory sensitivities or allergies
- Assembly. I found the assembly process to be a bit confusing. Clearer instructions might make putting this headboard together faster and easier
The Flash Furniture Bedford Headboard has an attractive box stitch design and wide variety of color options make this headboard tough to pass up, especially at this price.
How We Picked
Headboards can be bought for a variety of reasons. Not all headboards will satisfy these needs however; some may be comfortable while others are simply stylish and not very comfortable to lean against. We’ve tried to keep all of that in mind when evaluating. Here are the factors that resonated with us the most:
Headboards typically have two different components; there is the hardware and the frame, and there is the actual headboard itself. Frames are usually made out of wood or metal, and the hardware is almost always metal but sometimes plastic. Metal frames can be more sturdy but some can still be bent or damaged, while wood sports a more traditional look.
The material used as the headboard is typically made with foam padding covered by a type of fabric. Cotton weaves, microsuede, and leather-like fabrics are the most common. These all are meant to make the headboard more comfortable to lean against; the headboards made out of wood may be a little less comfortable by design.
Headboards are like any type of home furniture. They can be time-consuming and even difficult to assemble, but once they are built they should be relatively maintenance free. That being said, some products offer easier assembly procedures than others.
The more parts (shelves, poles) a headboard has, the more steps it will take to assemble. Wall-mounted headboards are sometimes easier to assemble, as panels will simply latch onto a metal frame screwed to the wall. These, however, may need more maintenance as they are always subject to the constant force of gravity.
The biggest difference between different headboards might not be a physical variation, but the price. The highest-end headboards can cost hundreds of dollars. Headboards in the higher price ranges are made of high-quality materials and are sturdily designed. The styles of the more expensive headboards range from traditional and elegant to artistic and unique.
That doesn’t mean the more affordable versions won’t satisfy a wide swathe of your needs. Shoppers can find headboards that are simple and chic or that provide great utility for a very reasonable price. Manufacturers have created lots of different colors, fabrics, and styles within a modest price range.
Not sure which headboard is right for you? Here are some tips that might help you make your choice:
- What is the style of your room?
- If your room has lots of artwork, bold paint colors, or a bedframe with a distinct look, it may behoove you to find a headboard that matches with at least one of the colors or styles.
- Those who are outfitting a room from scratch can take more risks and use the headboard as one of the base pieces of a room’s decor.
- What size bed do you have?
- Many manufacturers make headboards for twins, fulls, queens, and kings, but not for California kings. California king beds may be harder to find a match.
- Some types of headboards can match multiple bed sizes. Wall-mounted headboards tend to be the most versatile.