Sleeping Bags for Women

The number one priority for most people when choosing a sleeping bag is its ability to keep them warm. Furthermore sleeping bags don't have any capacity for heating on their own. The person inside the sleeping bag is the heat source and the sleeping bag's job is to then retain and distribute that heat. A good model will do this well, a bad sleeping bag does it inadequately or not at all.

Mummy sleeping bags as a rule are a warmer option because the less empty space there is inside the sleeping bag the less area your body has to heat. So, lady hikers and campers everywhere consider this – why are most sleeping bags made with the tall, strapping outdoor type male in mind? For most of us ladies that means a sleeping bag that is more empty space than otherwise making even our top quality sleeping bags less efficient. Add into the equation that women typically feel the cold more than men and the whole scenario is far from satisfactory.

However, help is at hand. There are sleeping bag manufacturers out there who have taken pity on our plight and, although once upon a time women's sleeping bags were as rare as hens' teeth, there are now a pleasing variety on the market.

How do sleeping bags for women differ to standard sleeping bags?

First off they are generally shorter in length. Many women, although of course not always shorter than men, will often find lots of spare bag at their feet and, as women are susceptible to heat loss in this area, may find their toes get a bit chilly. Women's sleeping bags not only chop off the extra length but often provide extra insulation around the foot area thus addressing the problem with a double solution. For taller women, there are a few options for women's sleeping bags in a slightly longer length.

The other main way in which sleeping bags for women differ from their standard counterparts are in their shape. Women have curves that men don't so good quality women's sleeping bags match those curves in their general outline. This again makes for a snug fit without any spare air which reduces heating efficiency in a sleeping bag. It is perhaps reassuring to know also that many women's sleeping bags on the market are not just made specifically for women but are designed by women too so every little detail which affects us ladies has been taken into account.

Because many women's sleeping bags use far less material and fill overall they are generally lighter than a standard bag which is a bit of a bonus for backpackers and hikers.

What type of sleeping bags for women are available?

Pretty much the same types are available as with normal sleeping bags. The majority of women's sleeping bags are of the mummy type which, as the whole point of the specific design is about eliminating excess space, makes complete sense. Rectangular bags are available but typically a women's sleeping bag of this type will just be smaller in its dimensions.

As with standard sleeping bags, both synthetic fill and down-fill are available as are the full range of season ratings from 1 through to 4+.

Once upon a time, specifically for women sleeping bags were always top of the range so you could expect to pay in excess of £200. Although the top end of the market is still far more varied and easier to come by, there are now makers such as Coleman, who offer lower end choices.