Upholstered bed head boards

barb5March 22, 2014

We are getting a new bed and I love the look of an upholstered bed head board when it is co-ordinated with bedding and curtains. So pretty! And we both read in bed and the padded head board looks comfy.

But when I mentioned this to DH he thought the upholstery would get stained (neither of us wear hair pomade!), and even my dear sister mentioned germs (yes, she is a bit of a germ phobic).

We are an older couple with grown kids and the only stains I need to protect our furniture from these days is from muddy dog paws. The dogs don't climb on the bed head boards!

So.... those with upholstered head boards, please give me your experience. Do they get stained, frayed, ripped or anything else? And do you find them comfy to lean back on when reading in bed?

This is the last time I plan on buying a bed or redoing the bedroom. I want the bed to look good for the next oh, 20 to 30 years, fate willing.

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Human beings, any living being, has oils in the
hair and skin. Otherwise, we are dead. Aging does a number on the oils we produce as is evidenced by wrinkles, but I hope I still have some oil left in my hair and skin to protect it through the years. I do not think these headboards are meant for resting one's head. You can use those conformer pillows or huggie things for that.

I love upholstered headboards but I would not buy one for the intention of resting my head on it. I would buy it because it is beautiful , sleek looking and looks glamorous.

    Bookmark   March 22, 2014 at 11:29AM
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We have made three of them. Two are here in our own home. No stains--and these are teens using the ones we have. The other was a MIL gift. I saw no stains when it was handed down to her son upon her death. I would agree, most will also have a pillow or two between them and an upholstered head board. They are not as "cushion-y" as say a chair or couch.

    Bookmark   March 22, 2014 at 12:26PM
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I have one from Room & Board, purchased several years ago (I'll link to the one I have -- the headboard extends 27-28 inches from the top of the mattress, which is 1 mattress, not a mattress+boxspring, because this is a platform bed w/metal slats).

I don't like a lot of throw pillows on the bed, but I do love my 2 Euro shams there that coordinate with my comforter, and those shams give me a little more cushioning in the back when I'm sitting up using my laptop or reading. Plus, if I thought I'd stain them with anything, they're a layer of protection.

But quite honestly, I don't think that's ever been an issue.
If you think there might be, you can always spray a fabric protector on it (all over on the upholstered parts, not just the headboard).

I'd also be smart about which fabric you chose -- even touching the samples will tell you which need to be baby'd and which are tougher. By the way, I use a vacuum cleaner tool to "dust" the fabric when I need to, so a light cotton upholstery probably would be a bad choice.

Here is a link that might be useful: R&B's Ella bed

    Bookmark   March 22, 2014 at 12:36PM
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I have a comfortable wingback recliner in my den. I'm plagued with various respiratory ailments in the winter and spend a lot of night sleeping in this recliner; it's far easier to breathe in a nearly upright position.

I'm a clean person; I do not use any hair products other than shampoo. No conditioner, no spray, no mousse or goop or gel. Still, my recliner now has a distinct "oil slick" from where my head hit the top cushion. Once I noticed this I starting laying a pillowcase over the recliner's top when I was going to sleep in it. I also cover it with a sheet when I go from day dressed, upright, and reading, to PJs and ready for sleeping.

I saw a tall wing-back headboard that I fell in love with, but I had the same concerns. How would I keep it clean since we would both be sitting/leaning against it for reading, etc., and then rubbing our noggins on it all night.

I'd had to have to cover it with a slipcover or through a sheet over it every night.

    Bookmark   March 22, 2014 at 1:13PM
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If you sit up and read in bed, the headboards will get body indententions as the padding flattens. First hand experience here.

    Bookmark   March 22, 2014 at 4:03PM
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I've had a bed with an upholstered headboard for ten years. I read in bed every night for 45 minutes or so. I always use two pillows to prop me up and my head doesn't touch the headboard at all. It has no stains or indentations.

The back of the headboard is covered with thin material and that does get dusty. I have to vacuum it every so often. However, I do live in the dustiest house in the world, no lie.

This bed is a bit big for my room so I plan to have it moved to the guest room and buy another upholstered headboard for my room, but no footboard.

Here is a link that might be useful: my bed

    Bookmark   March 22, 2014 at 5:54PM
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Thank you everyone for your imput, it gives me some things to think about. I had it in my mind to go for an upholstered head board, but I am going to look for wood ones now too.

Caroline, I hope that now spring is approaching that you can get a better night's sleep, but I am glad you have that comfortable recliner when you need it!

    Bookmark   March 22, 2014 at 9:15PM
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We have a leather head board. I do use pillows to prop up on when I read. I find it very comfortable for sitting up in bed even though my head is not necessarily touching it. It provides solid, soft, solid support.

    Bookmark   March 22, 2014 at 9:55PM
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Bumblebeez SC Zone 7

This is an interesting thread to me as I've wondered about all this.
But Ded, However, I do live in the dustiest house in the world, no lie
I can give you serious competition.

    Bookmark   March 22, 2014 at 10:11PM
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Dedtired, I love the bed in your link. Is that what your are getting to replace your current bed?

    Bookmark   April 20, 2014 at 2:41PM
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