The Best Hammocks (Review & Buying Guide) in 2021
Lay back and relax into a hammock
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BY Andra DelMonico / LAST UPDATED ON October 15, 2020
These days, there seems to be no limit to the variety of outdoor furniture and camping equipment available at the click of a mouse. Still, we think the best option might still be the tried-and-true hammock. Hammocks have been around for a long time, but new materials and designs mean we can branch out and enjoy them in more ways and places than ever before.
Put a freestanding hammock in your backyard to relax after work. Throw one in your pack for your next camping trip. Keep one in your car, and enjoy the local park when you have some downtime. Some of these would even be great for indoor use. We’ve put together a list that has a hammock for everybody, so take a look and see why these things get us so excited.
This double cotton hammock and steel stand have a 450-pound weight capacity. It measures nine feet in length.
Made from solution-dyed yarn that resists fading, staining, mildew, and UV rays. Steel stand has a zinc coating.
Hammock may be too short for the stand. The ropes on the end can wear and break.
This single-person camping tent comes in several colors and is made of 210T parachute nylon. It measures 108 x 54 inches.
Soft and lightweight material weighs just 16 ounces. Tree straps and carabiners are included.
Material can rip during use. It doesn’t have a flat bottom, so it wraps tight around you.
This 10-foot tree hammock is made of nylon and measures 55 inches wide. It can hold up to 500 pounds. It comes with straps and carabiners for mounting your hammock.
Includes mesh mosquito net. Made of 210T parachute nylon. Carrying bag included.
Netting isn’t as durable and can bunch or rip. The bug net is sewn to the hammock.
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Benefits of Hammocks
- Improve sleep quality. If you struggle to fall asleep or stay asleep, a hammock’s gentle swaying motion can help you fall asleep faster and achieve a deeper, more restful sleep.
- Relieve stress. Spending time outside while lying in a hammock gives you a peaceful time to clear your mind and be contemplative. This helps you to meditate, or just relax and enjoy nature.
- Alleviate back pain. Because you’re lying on a suspended piece of material, there are no pressure points. This may help you relieve back pain by allowing your muscles to relax.
Types of Hammocks
These hammocks come in a wide variety of colors and patterns, making them perfect for matching a particular design theme in your backyard. They tend to be the most durable and will keep you warmer due to the fabric’s solid, tight weave. Some higher-end hammocks will come with built-in pillows. You’ll find fabric hammocks made out of cotton or canvas.
These hammocks work best in warm to hot climates where you’ll benefit from the increased airflow through the ropes. The body of these hammocks is made from cotton or polyester rope that’s knotted together. If you plan to take long naps in your hammock, you may not enjoy the rope marks you’ll wake up with.
These hammocks are incredibly lightweight and portable. Unlike the other two types, you don’t need a frame to support it. All you need are two trees or even your Jeep roof bars to suspend your hammock. This will give you more comfort than sleeping on the ground. It’ll also keep you cooler and cause less damage to the environment.
Eagles Nest Outfitters (ENO)
Founded in 1999 in Florida, ENO has grown from a small operation in a minivan to a thriving company headquartered in Asheville, N.C. It’s known for quality equipment and a commitment to preserving and protecting the environment. Try out the Eagles Nest Outfitters Single Nest Lightweight Camping Hammock on your next camping trip.
Wise Owl Outfitters
Located in Tennessee, the team at Wise Owl set out to create quality yet affordable hammock. Since then, the company’s product line has expanded to include a variety of outdoor lifestyle equipment. It’s known for a dedication to the innovation of technology, design, and processes. Check out the Wise Owl Outfitters Ultralight Camping Hammock with Tree Straps and experience quality for yourself.
In 2014, the founders behind Sunnydaze took their eight years of hammock selling experience and set out to create their own high-quality outdoor living products. Today, its team is dedicated to cultivating fresh materials and ideas from all over the world. It’s also known for its commitment to old fashioned customer service. Lounge around in your backyard on the Sunnydaze Two Person Quilted Fabric Hammock.
- Under $50: You can buy a decent quality camping or fabric hammock in this price range. It may lack some of the fancier features, though.
- $50 to $100: The majority of camping hammocks are within this price range. They use quality fabrics, come with mounting hardware, and are lightweight enough to carry. You’ll also find decent quality backyard hammocks made of durable materials.
- $100 and up: Hammocks in this range are considered high-end and are most likely backyard style. They’ll come with several features, such as fringe, pockets, and pillows. They’ll also come with the stand for mounting it.
The type of material your hammock is made out of will significantly influence its intended purpose. Woven fabric cotton hammocks or rope hammocks are ideal for your backyard. While hammocks that are made out of lightweight nylon or polyester are better suited for backpacking and camping. Whatever style you choose, look at the construction of the hammock. It should have durable, tight stitching.
Some hammocks have wood or metal bars at each end to spread the hammock out. The hammock will look flat, which makes it perfect for sunbathing. Without the spreader bar, your hammock will wrap around you like a cocoon.
You’ll find the flat style of hammocks in backyards and poolside. Keep in mind that this style is considered the most unstable. This makes them less than ideal for sleeping in. Camping hammocks won’t have spreader bars as this would restrict their portability.
Camping hammocks typically have nylon webbing that is six to ten feet in length. You’ll want straps that can support your body weight and are long enough to give you freedom in how you hang your hammock.
Hammocks meant for your backyard are intended to mount on a wood or metal stand. They will either have a metal chain or webbing that’s woven around a metal loop that hooks to the stand.
- Size. There’s no one size for hammocks. If you have a stand in your backyard, you’ll need to measure it and buy a hammock that’s the correct size. The sizes are dictated in feet. Camping hammocks also come in multiple sizes. You’ll need to balance the hammock’s size with its overall weight since you’ll be carrying it to the campsite.
- Weight Capacity. Each hammock will have a stated weight capacity that’s determined by the manufacturer. This will dictate how many people can safely lay in the hammock. If you plan to have someone join you, look for a two-person hammock as they have higher weight limits and more material to create a larger space.
- Color and Style. The hammock you buy should be one that you find appealing. If you’re buying a camping hammock, you’ll find they come in various colors. You have more freedom with your backyard hammock as they come in colors and patterns. This lets you match your backyard decor or choose one that provides a pop of color.
Best Hammocks Reviews & Recommendations
- Hang your hammock with a bit of sag; it shouldn’t be strung up so tightly that it sits perfectly parallel with the ground.
- If you plan to camp with your hammock, try adding a drip line. This prevents water from running down the straps and into your hammock.
- If your hammock is in the backyard, bring it in when not using it. This prevents it from suffering UV damage and moisture rot.
What is the best hammock to buy?
A: The best hammock is the one that functionally suits your intended purpose. If you plan to lounge and sunbathe, a flat fabric hammock is best. If you plan to sleep, a cocoon hammock is best. String or rope hammocks are best in hot and humid climates. If you plan to go hiking, RVing, or car camping, then a portable hammock is perfect because they are compact and lightweight.
What is the most comfortable hammock?
A: The most comfortable hammock is a cocoon style made of nylon. The lightweight fabric helps keep you cool while its smooth texture eliminates the pressure that rope hammocks can create. The lightweight fabric should gently wrap around you to provide even and ample support while also keeping your upper body slightly elevated.
Why does my hammock sag?
A: Hammocks sag for two reasons. You either hung it at the wrong angle, or you hung the two ends too close together. This results in the hammock being too loose or too close to the ground. Ideally, you should have a 30-degree angle in the straps. If you can’t achieve this, then aim for steeper. This will be more comfortable than a flat and board-like position.
How big of a hammock stand do I need?
A: If you already have your hammock, then start by measuring your hammock length and adding two feet. This is the size of the stand you should buy. Common lengths you’ll see are 9.5, 14.5, and 15 feet. If you have a double hammock, then you’ll need a stand capable of supporting these larger hammocks. They will have a broader base and higher weight capacity.
The Vivere Double Cotton Hammock is a smart choice with its 450-pound weight capacity, steel stand, and durable double cotton construction. For a more affordable option, the Wise Owl Outfitters Hammock is sure to please with its lightweight 210T parachute nylon construction and large size.