7 of the Coolest (& Safest) Bunk Beds

by Lindsey Hunter Lopez
May 22, 2017 at 2:00 p.m. ET

When your kids share a room, you can never have enough space. Beds take up a huge amount of real estate, so bunk beds are a logical choice for room-sharing siblings. Safety comes first, so I talked guidelines with principal investigator for the Center for Injury Research Lara McKenzie, Ph.D.

McKenzie, who works with the website Make Safe Happen, notes that while bunk beds can be convenient space-saving sleeping arrangements, there are an estimated 36,000 nonfatal bunk bed-related injuries each year. "Children get hurt in bunk beds playing or sleeping — these injuries are from falls, jumps, ladders, bed malfunctions and striking the bed," she says, noting that bunk injuries are more severe than with conventional beds. So if you go with a bunk bed, make sure you look at brands and styles that meet current safety standards and rule out homemade or hand-me-down bunks. Check that it has not been recalled at recalls.gov. "Can’t emphasize this enough because there are a lot of bunk bed recalls," cautions McKenzie. Make sure there are guardrails on either side of the top bunk that are at least 5 inches above the mattress and that have gaps 3.5 inches or smaller to prevent kids from getting stuck or falling out.

Once you have the bunk beds home, McKenzie recommends placing them in the corner of the room (and away from ceiling fans), so that there are walls on both sides. "Discourage children from playing on or under the bunk beds," she says. And only one person on the top bunk! To prevent nighttime falls, use a nightlight for ladder climbing and clear any objects from around the bed. Also, children under 6 shouldn't sleep on the top bunk. Find out more about furniture safety with the free app Make Safe Happen

1 /7: Simple design

1/7 :Simple design

The name sounds like menstrual relief, but the Mydal is actually Ikea's super-popular wood bunk bed. Like the smaller Kura loft bed, the Mydal's simple design makes it a great candidate for a popular Ikea hack. I'm eyeing a Pinterest post wherein an unassuming Ikea bunk bed has been transformed into an adorable house-shaped structure. As for safety, Ikea says: "High beds and the upper bed of bunk or loft beds are not suitable for children under 6 years of age due to the risk of injury from falls." (Ikea, $169)

2/7 :Dollhouse

This adorable bunk bed looks just like a classic dollhouse, complete with picket fence. Think of the pretend play this beauty would inspire! Perfect for doll-loving kiddos. The only drawback I can think of is that changing the sheets could be a challenge… (Imagine That! Playhouses and More, $2,495 - $2,795)

3 /7: Hang-Out

3/7 :Hang-Out

Handcrafted in Denmark, this dreamy bunk bed has a hefty price tag, but consider that it's knot-free Scandinavian pine from 100 percent certified and sustainable forests. The Hang-Out features a top cabin bed, a bottom bunk and the pull-out drawer can be a third bed for guests. (Fancy, $2,995)

4/7 :Fort

The Fort bunk bed from Room & Board comes in great colors like blossom pink and ocean blue. Further customize your duo by choosing a twin-over-twin size or a twin over a double bed. Bonus: The beds can separate should you want to reorganize. Made of sturdy steel, the Fort bunk complies with or exceeds all safety standards. (Room and Board, $1,899 – $1,999)

5 /7: Camper Van

5/7 :Camper Van

Despite its SoCal vibe, this amazing Camper Van bunk bed is handmade in the U.K. The plywood bunk features a working door and surfboard ladder to inspire nomadic beach dreams. It’s a whimsical winner, but the Camper Van bunk comes flat-packed to you at a steep price. (Fancy, $7,295)

6 /7: Tree House

6/7 :Tree House

The Tree House twin-over-twin bunk bed is a top contender for us due to the fun design and quality craftsmanship. Available in three colors (white, brushed gray and darker wood), this one is a great choice. It's tall, so make sure you have a ceiling height of at least 9 feet in your kids’ room. The Tree House bunk comes with an anti-tip kit, and the beds should be mounted to the wall. (Pottery Barn Kids, $1,899)

7 /7: Staircase

7/7 :Staircase

The Woodland twin-over-full with twin trundle by Viv + Rae features… pretty much everything! A twin on the top bunk, a full bed underneath plus another twin trundle bed ensure that you can fit all the children on this setup — a slumber party dream. Plus, it has attached stairs that are also a bookcase, so you can store all their stuff too. (Wayfair, $1,052.99)