We’ve covered non-toxic, natural, and organic mattresses, so it’s time to move on to the next piece of bedroom furniture: bed frames!

  • Are non-toxic bed frames really necessary? 
  • Which materials are best? 
  • What’s MDF wood, and should it be in your bed frame?

We’ve got your answers to all that and more… plus my recommendations for the best bed frames with and without headboards, with a variety of customizable options, and all without harsh chemicals, VOCs, and much more.

This post contains affiliate links, which means we may earn a small commission if you choose to make a purchase. We only make honest recommendations. Feature image credit: Savvy Rest

My Top Picks for Non-Toxic Bed Frames at a Glance:

  • Best Modular Option: Thuma

+ more options and discount codes below!

Why Choose a Non-Toxic, Chemical-Free Bed Frame?

Many conventional bed frames contain a host of toxic chemicals, which I’ll discuss in more detail in a minute. Considering that most humans spend about a third of their lives in bed, switching to a toxic chemical-free bed frame and other non-toxic bedroom furniture could actually make a difference in one’s long-term health. 

Not only that, but sleep is when our bodies and brains do a lot of rest and repair, so doing what we can to make sure our bodies don’t have to work overtime during sleep can create a positive compound effect over time.

What Makes A Bed Frame Toxic?

Conventional bed frames usually contain things like:

  • Resins
  • Varnishes
  • Paints
  • Wood stains
  • Glues and adhesives
  • VOCs
  • and more

Volatile organic compounds (VOCs) tend to “off-gas” into your bedroom (slowly leaking VOCs into the air over time), which decreases the indoor air quality. This can be especially concerning for people with sleep apnea and other sleep disorders, as well as more vulnerable folks like children, elderly people, and individuals with chronic health conditions.

Scroll down to the bottom section of this article to learn more about what exactly to look for in a non-toxic bed frame!

11 Best Non-Toxic & Natural Bed Frames (With & Without Headboards)

Here are my picks for the best non-toxic and eco-friendly bed frames. They’re handmade out of natural and sustainable materials and will help you improve the overall indoor air quality in your bedroom.

1. Savvy Rest (Best Overall & Best Adjustable Bed Frames)

Available Styles: Adjustable Bed Frame, The Afton (Flagship Platform Bed), The Esmont (Platform Bed with Customizable Headboard), Trundle Bed
Headboard? Yes. Some options allow for a customizable headboard.
Sizes: Twin, Twin XL, Queen, King, California King, Split King
Colors: Unfinished, Linseed, Cedar, Mahogany, Walnut
Price Range: $945 – $4,699

Why I Recommend It: 

Savvy Rest is a company that is committed to making truly safe and sustainable bed frames, mattresses, bedding, and other furniture (like sofas and armchairs). I love their pillows and appreciate the variety of customization. 

Non Toxic & Sustainable Features: 

  • Frames are built in the USA in their Central Virginia workshop.
  • Bed frames are built from sustainable sourced solid maple, poplar, and oak wood.
  • The wood is finished with zero-VOC finishes.
  • Almost every bed frame allows you to choose between several different finishes including unfinished.

Product Highlights: 

The Adjustable bed frame is pretty customizable allowing you to choose if you want to add a headboard and/or a footboard and/or none. You can also choose the finish (including an unfinished option). 

  • This is a great option for people who snore and those with back pain, acid reflux, and sleep apnea symptoms. 
  • It can also help with swelling, blood circulation, and pressure point relief.
  • The adjustable portion comes with a foldable design with head and foot. articulation, zero gravity position, a 9-button wireless remote, Bluetooth connectivity, and four USB charging ports.

The Afton

  • Minimalistic platform bed frame
  • No headboard option
  • You can choose from a variety of finishes including unfinished. 

The Esmont (pictured above) 

  • Offers more customization options
  • Includes a headboard with height and style options
  • You can choose from a variety of finishes including unfinished

Savvy Rest non-toxic trundle bed

  • Choose from a variety of finishes including unfinished
  • Perfect if you’re short on space
  • A great idea for guest and kids’ rooms! 

Use code THEFILTERY20 for 20% off.


2. Birch (Most Affordable Non-Toxic Platform Bed Frame)

sustainable bed frame from birch

Available Styles: Natural Wood Frame, Birch Foundation
Headboard? No
Sizes: Twin, Twin XL, Queen, King, California King
Colors: Natural or White
Price Range: $439 (on sale) – $779

Why I Recommend It: 

This is a great standard, non-toxic and natural platform bed frame. It’s easy and safe to assemble and requires zero tools! You also get a 100-night sleep trial and 5-year warranty. Frames are made by Mennonite artisans out of hardwoods and then wrapped in organic cotton.

Non Toxic & Sustainable Features: 

  • Made in the USA from durable and 100% natural wood (including Yellow Pine and Maple)
  • Finished with all-natural, water-based, and zero-VOC finishes
  • Made from FSC-certified wood
  • LEED & CARB compliant 

Product Highlights: 

The Birch Foundation

  • You can put between your bed frame and mattress for support
  • Has sturdy slats for the ultimate support
  • Has an organic cotton exterior cover

Use code THEFILTERY20 for 20% off at checkout.


3. Thuma (Best Modular Non-Toxic Bed Frame)

sustainable bed frame from thuma

Available Styles: “The Bed,” which you can get with or without a Headboard, PillowBoard, or as a DayBed
Headboard? Yes, you choose.
Sizes: Twin, Twin XL, Full, Queen, King, California King, Daybed
Colors: Walnut, Natural, Espresso for the frame; Dark Charcoal, Fog Gray, or Light Linen for PillowBoard
Price Range: $695 – $1,995

Why I Recommend It: 

If you’re interested in a solid wood bed frame that you can switch up and swap out over time, Thuma is a great option. I love how easy Thuma is to assemble. They use what’s called Japanese Joinery, a Japanese craftsmen technique that is naturally noise-minimizing while also super easy to put together, eliminating the need for excess metal hardware.

Non Toxic & Sustainable Features: 

  • Thuma’s non-toxic and natural wood bed frame is handcrafted out of repurposed wood that’s completely free from MDF and veneers. 
  • Natural cork pads on the bottom of the legs protect your floor.
  • The whole bed is also GREENGUARD Certified, which gives me more reassurance that although some synthetics are used, it’s been tested to ensure low chemical emissions.
  • The “PillowBoard” option, (which is an upholstered headboard), is made out of CertiPUR-US® certified foam with a 100% polyester pebbled linen-weave cover. 
  • These aren’t the most non-toxic materials ever since they are synthetic, but I’m at least glad to see the CertiPUR certification, which indicates that it’s free from certain toxins. 
  • The linen cover is also interchangeable and washable, which is pretty nice.
  • It’s PFAS-free.

Product Highlight: 

“The Bed”

  • You can choose from 4 finishes
  • You have the option to purchase the frame by itself, with a wood headboard, or with the PillowBoard. 

The DayBed 

  • Make a daybed using a twin frame and three twin PillowBoards
  • Choose from 4 wood finishes
  • Choose from 4 PillowBoard fabrics 

4. Medley (Best Non-Toxic Upholstered Bed Frames and Best for a Non-Toxic Bed Frame with Storage)

Available Styles: Upholstered: Bramo Bed, Pippen Bed, Nein Bed; Solid Wood: Palder Bed, Buden Bed
Headboard? Yes, you choose.
Sizes: Twin, Full, Queen, King, California King
Colors: Wide variety of fabrics to choose from for the upholstered bed frames. Wooden options come in Maple or Walnut.
Price Range: $2,534 – $5,049

Why I Like It: 

Medley is one of the best brands for beautiful non-toxic furniture. All their beds are made in the USA and they have a lot of different fabrics to choose from so you can customize based on your preferences and bedroom aesthetic. They also offer lots of other perks, too, like free fabric samples, free returns, and lifetime warranties.

Non Toxic & Sustainable Features

  • Their non-toxic upholstered bed frame options are available in either CertiPUR-US certified poly foam or a natural version made out of latex.
  • For the synthetic-free options, they layer the entire frame with certified organic natural latex which is made from the sap of rubber trees. 
  • It is 100% natural rubber which is durable, contains no harsh chemicals, and is bacteria, mildew, and mold resistant (which is more necessary for fabric bedframes!)
  • The latex is wrapped with domestic OEKO-TEX certified wool
  • Certified organic cotton is used for the internal linings.

Product Highlight: 

The Buden Bed

  • A great option for those who need or want extra storage.
  • Options with and without a headboard 
  • The headboard option contains even more storage!
  • It’s got shelves at the end and drawers throughout, which is great for storing books, valuables, extra, blankets, and more. 
  • You choose between FSC-certified Maple or Walnut wood. 
  • It’s finished with a natural beeswax finish that’s odorless, water-resistant, and non-toxic.

Use code THEFILTERY5 for 5% off your order.


5. Burrow (More Affordable Upholstered Bed Frame)

sustainable non toxic bed frame from burrow

Available Styles: Natural wood or upholstered bed frame
Headboard? Yes. Either wood or upholstered.
Sizes: Full, Queen, King
Colors: For the fabric finish: Heather Charcoal, Papyrus, Stone Gray; For the Headboard: matching fabric OR Walnut or Oak Wood; For the Legs: Walnut, Oak, or Black Metal
Price Range: $639 (on sale) – $1,599

Why I Recommend it: 

Burrow is another *pretty good* choice for a non-toxic upholstered bed frame, which comes in at about half the price compared to Medley. I love that their beds are relatively customizable: 

  • 3 fabric options for the base of the bed
  • Matching fabric or solid wood options for the headboard
  • 3 different options for the bed frame legs. 

The main downside to these beds, though, is that the headboard part of the bed is made from regular MDF. I’ve decided to keep them in this article due to the fact that they’re completely PFAS-free and one of the most affordable options. 

Burrow has also been very transparent with me and my questions, so if there is anything else you want to know about, don’t hesitate to reach out to them and ask!

Non Toxic & Sustainable Features

  • The actual frame part of Burrow’s beds are made out of FSC-certified solid hardwood and are put together using Japanese-inspired joinery, which doesn’t require a bunch of glues and adhesives. 
  • The wood is then treated with a non-toxic finish for durability. 
  • The fabric used for their upholstered bed frames is synthetic, but it’s made without any toxic PFAS or flame retardants.

6. ducduc (Best for Toddlers & Kids)

non toxic bed frames for kids from ducduc

Available Styles: Austin Low Footboard Bed & Trundle (with storage), Cabana Daybed & Trundle, Indi Bed, Juno Bed, Cribs
Headboard? Yes
Sizes: Twin, Full
Colors: Natural, White, Walnut, Midnight (blue), Fern Green, Gray, Onyx
Price Range: $775 – $2,795

Why I Recommend: 

If you’re looking for a non-toxic bed for your little one, ducduc has several great options. These non-toxic kids’ bed frames are handmade in the USA with a variety of great options for kids, from your standard twin bed frame, to trundle beds with storage at the end.

In general, their options are a bit lower to the ground than conventional bed frames so you don’t have to worry about a long fall should your child roll out of bed.

Plus, these beds are super easy to assemble—you can do it in 15 to 30 minutes!

Non Toxic & Sustainable Features

  • Kids’ frames are made using 100% baltic birch
  • Free from MDF and particleboard
  • They use water-based, non-toxic finishes and glues
  • Products are made from a combination of solid hardwoods and CARB II/TSCA Title VI compliant hardwood plywoods.

7. Natural Home By The Futon Shop (Most Options to Choose From!)

non-toxic-natural-chemical-free-amish-wood-futon-frames-the-futon-shop

Available Styles: Platform Beds Frames, Futon Bed Frames, Japanese Furniture
Headboard? Yes. Some options have headboards and others don’t.
Sizes: Futon, Twin, Twin XL, Full, Full XL, Queen, King, Cal King
Colors: Lots of natural finishes to choose from
Price Range: $492 – $2,871

Why I Recommend:

The Futon Shop’s Natural Home Shop carries several collections of chemical-free and natural wood frames for futons and sofa beds, as well as platform options for regular mattresses. They also offer one upholstered option, which is made with OEKO-TEX certified hemp fabric.

Non Toxic & Sustainable Features

  • Many of their beautiful eco-friendly bed frames are handcrafted by expert Amish craftsmen in Pennsylvania.
  • The bed frames are crafted from locally sourced wood from responsibly managed forests.
  • They use natural linseed oil finish and water-based, zero-VOC glues.

8. Masaya & Co. (Most Unique Headboard Designs)

Available Styles: Solid wood beds with headboards, headboards with woven fabric patterns, and options with geometric wooden patterns
Headboard? Yes.
Sizes: Twin, Full, Queen, King
Colors: Teak, Burnt Teak, Arena Teak, Mahogany, Walnut, + colorful woven fabric patterns
Price Range: $2,190 – $3,680

Why I Recommend:

Masaya & Co. offers several really gorgeous designs for your non-toxic bed. I love how their styles offer a perfect, timeless middle ground between chic and rustic. Masaya & Co. was actually initially founded as a reforestation project in Managua, Nicaragua, and then later grew into a sustainable furniture brand that’s dedicated to timeless design, artisan craftsmanship, and the sustainability of our planet’s resources. 

Non Toxic & Sustainable Features

  • Handmade in Nicaragua
  • Bed frames are sustainably harvested from teak hardwood 
  • Finished with a low-VOC natural oil finish. 
  • Note that the colorful woven options are made out of polyester cord, so those ones aren’t 100% natural.
  • For every product sold, their company plants 100 trees in Nicaragua to help combat deforestation in the region as a result of clear-cutting.
  • To date, Masaya & Co. has planted more than 900,000 trees and currently employs 150 artisans in the region.

9. My Green Mattress (Best for Bundling)

My Green Mattress - affordable non-toxic mattress

Available Styles: Premium Wood Platform Bed, Metal Bed Frame, My Green Foundation
Headboard? Yes, choose between a headboard or no headboard
Sizes: Twin, Twin XL, Full, Queen, King, California King
Colors: Unfinished
Price Range: $199 – $1,899

Why I Recommend:

If you’re in need of a full setup (bed frame, mattress, topper, sheets, pillows, etc.), My Green Mattress is one of the most affordable places to get a full bedroom setup for anyone in the family. 

I like that they offer complementary products such as organic pillows, mattress toppers and protectors, and bedding sets to finish off your bundle.

Plus, they offer risk-free perks like a 20-year warranty, 365-night sleep trial, and free shipping within the contiguous US.

Non Toxic & Sustainable Features

  • Frames are free from stains or adhesives
  • Wood bed frame comes from sustainably sourced Poplar

Product Highlight: 

Premium Wood Platform Bed Frame

  • Amish-made from solid wood and free from things like stain or adhesives. 
  • You can finish it yourself if you want to
  • It can support 1500+ pounds 
  • Has options with and without a headboard

Basic Foundation 

  • 7” box foundation (alternative to a box spring)
  • Made with sustainably sourced spruce with slats spaced to perfection (less than 3”)
  • Sizes Twin-King

Metal Bed Frame

  • Ideally paired with a box foundation
  • Doesn’t come with a footboard so it’s great for small spaces
  • Is a wheel-free solution for maximum stability

If you’re also getting a mattress, then you can use the code THEFILTERY20 for $25 off twin or larger mattresses or $20 off the Emily organic crib mattress.


10. Pottery Barn (Best for Non-Toxic Bunk Beds & Loft Beds)

Available Styles: Lots of options, including twin and full-sized laddered bunk beds, beds with stairs, loft beds with storage, tree house beds, and more.
Headboard? Yes, you choose.
Sizes: Mostly twin and full options.
Colors: Natural wood, white, blue, gray
Price Range: $1,199 – $4,645

Why I Recommend: 

Pottery Barn is trusted by lots of parents to create beds that are not only safe, but also cute and fun. They have a lot of bunk beds, loft beds, and trundle beds to choose from—even a treehouse and a castle!

Non Toxic & Sustainable Features

  • CARB II/Title VI compliant 
  • Most of their bunk beds are GREENGUARD Gold Certified
  • Many bunk beds are Fair Trade Certified
  • Third party tested for things like lead, anti-tipping, edges that are too sharp, places for fingers to get stuck, and more.


11. Avocado

sustainable bed frames from avocado

Available Styles: City Bed Frame, Mid-Century Modern Bed Frame, Natural Wood Bed Frame, Malibu Platform Bed Frame, Kids’ Trundle Bed Frame, Metal Bed Frame, Green Mattress Foundation
Headboard? Yes. You can choose whether you want one or not for most of the styles.
Sizes: Twin, Twin XL, Full, Queen, King, California King
Colors: Walnut, Maple, Beechwood, White
Price Range: $189 – $3,399

Why I Recommend:

Avocado offers mattresses, bedding, and several different natural wood bed frames. They carry a ton of certifications and in addition to taking care of the planet they offer a variety of complementary products to complete your bedroom suite. 

Non Toxic & Sustainable Features

  • GREENGUARD Gold and FSC.
  • Natural wood bed frames are handcrafted in their own FSC®-certified Los Angeles woodshop.
  • Made using sustainably harvested American timber. 
  • They use water-based ECOS stains and Titebond® wood glues, which qualify as zero VOC. 
  • The metal bed frame is made from melted down reclaimed railroad steel in Pennsylvania, USA.
  • Avocado are members of the Sustainable Furnishings Council, which means they don’t use any formaldehyde-containing MDF or other nasties.
  • Their bed frames are carbon negative
  • Their designs are zero waste and biodegradable
  • And they’re members of 1% For the Planet.

Product Highlight

City Bed Frame

  • One of the best sellers
  • Crafted from solid wood that comes from responsibly managed forests
  • Its minimalist design makes it perfect for small spaces and city living
  • Comes with or without a headboard 
  • Choose between a dark or light finish
  • Has an option for a matching nightstand or a matching room set! 

Metal Bed Frame 

  • Their most affordable and simple option 
  • It has a tool-free design that can be assembled in just minutes! 
  • Works with any foundation for a squeak-free sleep 
  • Can support up to 800 pounds
  • Has a reinforced interior for extra durability

Green Mattress Foundation

  • Provides perfect support for beds that need a strong foundation
  • Can be paired with the metal bed frame
  • Has an option that includes legs
  • Made from solid wood and a sturdy cotton-poly woven cover
  • The foundation features a clean design that complements their mattresses

Honorable Mention: Samina

samina sleep non toxic organic mattress and bed frame

If you’re looking for a completely customized sleep solution, check out Samina! Not only is it completely non-toxic, but it comes with orthopedic and grounding, along with an adjustable, inclined bed frame for folks with acid reflux and sleep apnea.

You can use the code THEFILTERY for 5% off your order.


Bonus: KAZI Eco-Friendly, Natural, & Fair Trade Headboards

natural non toxic headboard from kazi on made trade

If you already have a base and are looking for just a headboard, check out these unique sustainable and natural headboards from KAZI. A true statement piece! 

  • They’re handcrafted in Ghana out of natural elephant grass
  • Are colored with organic dyed (they also have undyed versions, too). 
  • The headboards come with the Nest Seal of Transparency which indicates artisans were paid a fair wage for their work. 

Do Bed Frames Contain Formaldehyde?

The short answer is: yes, most bed frames do contain formaldehyde, especially when they’re made with engineered wood like particleboard or MDF. The toxicity comes from formaldehyde fumes which are emitted by the glues and adhesives. 

When it comes to the short-term effects of formaldehyde, the National Cancer Institute states: “Some people are very sensitive to formaldehyde, whereas others have no reaction to the same level of exposure.” Short-term health effects include: 

  • Skin irritation
  • Coughing and wheezing
  • Burning sensations in the eyes, nose, and throat

When it comes to more chronic effects, the F.D.A. states some of the long-term health effects include: 

For these reasons, we want to try to limit exposure to formaldehyde whenever possible and stick to formaldehyde-free (or at least low-formaldehyde) bed frames.

Are Metal Bed Frames Toxic?

While metal frames can be a more affordable option, they can be coated with toxic chemicals like PFAS (to prevent rust) and BTEX chemicals (benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene, and xylene) in the paint.

They may also have the potential to increase exposure to radiation from electromagnetic fields (EMFs) while you sleep.

Although we still need more research in the area of EMFs, the metal may act as an antenna or conductor for EMFs and it’s something that is becoming more of a concern for many people—especially those who have an EMF sensitivity. Although EMFs are natural and humans have always been exposed to a certain amount of them, the level of certain types of EMF exposure is what is becoming more concerning in our ever-connected world.

What Are the Safest Materials to Look For In a Non-Toxic Bed Frame?

1. Natural, Solid Wood

Pretty much any type of solid, natural wood is a great option for bed frames. It’s a non-toxic, natural material that comes directly from a tree and is also eco-friendly (when sourced and treated in a sustainable way). 

Solid wood over compressed or engineered wood is usually the best option but sometimes (like when it comes to bunk beds, for example), there aren’t as many options. 

Let’s look briefly at the difference between solid hardwood versus various types of engineered wood.

More About Engineered Wood

Engineered wood is often used for furniture because it’s cheap. It can be very convincing as solid wood, and companies will use jargon to make it more confusing about what type of wood is really being used in their products. 

Other names for engineered wood include:

  • MDF (medium-density fiberboard)
  • Particleboard (low-density fiberboard)
  • Plywood
  • Chipboard

To make engineered wood, they take a bunch of wood “pieces” such as wood chips, sawdust, etc., and then press it all together with glue in order to make what appears to be real, solid wood. 

The glues and adhesives that are used to make these pressed woods where you’ll find a lot of the formaldehyde in furniture.

However, not all engineered wood is created equal, and some kinds are better than others. For one, they differ in the amount of glues needed as well as the strength of the final product. Let’s take a look: 

Plywood

  • More like a “sandwich” of thin wooden layers 
  • The direction of the wood grain is rotated for each layer, which creates a flexible, durable, and stable final product (sometimes even more so than regular solid wood!) 
  • For this reason, plywood is most often used for bunk beds and kids’ furniture

MDF and particleboard:

  • Made using smaller pieces of wood (even sawdust), often waste from other products 
  • These types of wood are less durable
  • They tend to need a lot more adhesives (and therefore more formaldehyde and other VOCs).

California’s CARB II

On a positive note, engineered wood that is made in the U.S. has actually gotten safer in recent years. 

  • 2010 — California’s CARB II went into place, which limited the amount of formaldehyde that was allowed in engineered wood products. 
  • 2016 — the federal government adopted a very similar set of standards, called TSCA Title VI (which went into effect in 2019). 

With these regulations in place, all engineered wood beds sold in the U.S. should be low in formaldehyde, but it also doesn’t hurt to look for the CARB II and/or Title VI label on furniture before buying it.

2. Natural Oils (or Unfinished)

Instead of toxic finishes and lacquers, look for companies that use natural oils, such as raw linseed, to finish the wood.

Alternatively, some of the options below offer their bed frames completely unfinished. This allows you to either leave it unfinished or finish it yourself using a product of your choosing, giving you more control. Just keep in mind that unfinished wood may be less durable over time, and is also more prone to mold and mildew.

3. No- or Low-VOC Paints

If you choose a colored bed frame instead of going natural, make sure you choose a company that uses low- or no-VOC paint. Paints commonly contain a lot of VOCs, just like adhesives do.

Related Guides:

Laying Non-Toxic & Eco-Friendly Bed Frames To Rest

Since the average person spends over a third of their lifetime sleeping, knowing how to purchase a non-toxic bed frame and keeping a few extra toxins out of your personal space should eliminate one more thing that keeps you from having a great night’s sleep!

To get more product picks, low-tox tips, news, and more delivered to your inbox once a week, sign up for Filtered Fridays!

Is it better to not have a bed frame?

Is a bed better on a frame or on the floor? At the end of the day, it’s up to you! Some people like the feng shui of having a bed on the floor, while other people will have a hard time getting in and out of the bed if the mattress is not at a higher level. For most people, going without a bed frame for a while is not going to be a problem, especially if you’re budgeting or in the middle of a move.

*Note: putting a mattress on the floor can void the warranty and prevent you from making a claim so keep this in mind and be sure to read the warranty before doing so! 

Do you really need a headboard?

Nope! The function of headboards are mostly for aesthetics and to keep the wall behind your bed clean. But you don’t need one. Many of the non-toxic bed frame brands featured here offer the option to get a headboard or not. Lots of people get creative and make an unconventional headboard by hanging a cool-looking sheet or using a wall decal.



About Abbie

Abbie Davidson is the Creator & Editor of The Filtery. With almost a decade of experience in sustainability, she researches and writes content with the aim of helping people minimize environmental toxins in an in-depth yet accessible way.


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