Down Vs Cotton Sleeping Bags - Which Is Better?
Many people find it difficult to decide between a down and a cotton sleeping bag, considering the benefits for both types of sleeping bag.
If you have been struggling with the same decision, be sure to read on!
Below, you will find an overview of both sleeping bags, their benefits and their recommended uses.
What Are the Benefits of a Down Sleeping Bag?
One of the benefits of a down sleeping bag is its temperature rating. Down sleeping bags can provide a considerable amount of warmth, which makes them very useful for colder environments.
We do need to mention that a down sleeping bag has the same temperature ratings as the synthetic sleeping bag, but the down sleeping bag has a better size – heat ratio.
Even though a down sleeping bag provides plenty of warmth, the material is also breathable. The breathable nature of the material will lead moisture away from the body, so you will never wake up soaking in sweat.
Another benefit of a down sleeping bag is its weight and size. Down sleeping bags tend to be more compact and lightweight than synthetic sleeping bags; this means that a down sleeping bag is usually better for backpackers who intend to walk a considerable distance and want to pack light. If you are a backpacker, choosing a down sleeping bag over a synthetic sleeping bag will save some valuable space and make your trip a little easier.
The longevity of the material is also a benefit worth mentioning. Down sleeping bags do not lose their shape and temperature rating over time, contrary to most synthetic materials that can lose some of their efficiency over the course of the years. Even though synthetic sleeping bags are not bad quality, you will obtain a little more value with a down sleeping bag.
A down sleeping bag can become a little problematic when it gets wet, although many manufacturers are tackling this problem with an additional protective layer. Down sleeping bags without this protective layer may hinder you from warming up when they get wet, and excess water exposure can ruin the sleeping bag altogether. So it is important to understand the environments you will be camping in before you decide which sleeping bag is best for you.
Down sleeping bags are usually more suitable for experienced backpackers and campers, given it requires a little know-how to clean.
What Are the Benefits of a Cotton Sleeping Bag?
Cotton is a cost-effective sleeping bag option that is quite similar to synthetic fibre sleeping bags.
Cotton fibres are available all across the world, so manufacturers can easily find good quality cotton and provide an outstanding end product at an affordable price.
The cotton sleeping bag is also a great alternative option for people struggling with certain allergies. If you have an allergy to feathers, the down sleeping bag will be less suitable for you. However, cotton is a hypoallergenic material by nature; this means that the material cannot cause any allergies.
Cotton sleeping bags are easier to maintain than most other sleeping bags and are quite similar to synthetic sleeping bags in that aspect. If you go camping for the first time and never used sleeping bags before, a cotton sleeping bag will be the best sleeping bag to start with.
Most cotton sleeping bags come with excellent protection against the weather elements, more specifically rain. While down sleeping bags can be affected by getting damp, cotton sleeping bags have a better protection level.
A cotton sleeping bag weighs a lot more than a down sleeping bag, which means that a cotton sleeping bag is not always suitable for backpackers; however, if you intend to use your cotton sleeping bag in your caravan or tent, a cotton sleeping bag will be a great option.
It is important to understand that cotton sleeping bags have a great temperature ratings, but do not always provide the same amount of warmth of that of a down sleeping bag. For most people, this is not really a problem but, if you intend to go camping in an extremely cold environment, you may need to look for sleeping bags with a good extreme rating.
How Do I Store My Sleeping bag?
Once you come back from your trip, you will need to store your sleeping bag until you need it again. Unfortunately, many people make the mistake of storing their sleeping bag in the stuff sack. The stuff sack is great to protect your sleeping bag against the weather elements, but it is not suitable for long term storage.
When you come back from your trip, it is essential to air dry your bag for a minimum of 24 hours.
If you store your sleeping bag right away, it may cause damage to the fibres of the filling material. Instead, hang your sleeping bag on the clothes line until it is ready for storage.
Once the sleeping bag has air dried for at least 24 hours, be sure to shake the sleeping bag to fluff up the filling material. Then, store your sleeping bag in a cool and dry space. Ideally, you can hang the sleeping bag in your wardrobe or spread it out underneath your bed. However, ensure that the sleeping bag does not come in contact with too much dust, since this may cause dust allergies when you go camping next. Instead, use a breathable storage bag or pillowcase that keeps your sleeping bag in mint condition.
With proper care, a good sleeping bag can last up to twenty years. However, the lifespan of your sleeping bag does somewhat depend on the filling material and the craftsmanship.
If you are currently looking for high-quality sleeping bags, be sure to have a look at our collection.