The right cold-weather sleeping bag liner can keep you warm and cozy on a fall or spring night under the stars. Other liners can help you stay cool and comfortable during hot summer nights.
But, figuring out which sleeping bag liner is best for your needs when there are so many different models and types available is no walk in the park.
To get you started, we’ve reviewed some of the best options on the market today. That way, you can choose the right liner for your sleeping bag.
Why You Need A Sleeping Bag Liner
You probably already have a sleeping bag, so you might be wondering why you need to get a liner for it. It turns out that sleeping bag liners can actually provide a whole host of benefits for campers.
Here are a few key reasons why you should have a liner for your sleeping bag:
- Keeps You Warm. Sleeping bag liners that are designed for cold weather use can actually increase the warmth of your sleep system by up to 25ºF (15C). These models will generally be made from fleece, Thermolite, or Primaloft insulation.
- Wicks Away Sweat. Some liners, especially those made from silk, cotton, and merino wool, are created for use during warm weather. This kind of liner will actually wick away sweat to help cool you down during those hot summer nights.
- Keeps Sleeping Bags Clean. Sleeping bags are one of those pieces of gear that just don’t get cleaned very often because washing them is a bit of a hassle. When you think about it, though, sleeping bags can get dirty very quickly, creating an unhygienic sleeping area while you’re outside. Liners, on the other hand, are easy to wash, so they’re a great way to keep the inside of your sleeping bag squeaky clean while camping.
- Great For Travel. If you also like to travel, sleeping bag liners can be a great way to protect yourself from unhygienic hotels and hostels. Instead of sleeping directly on questionably clean sheets, you can pack a small silk liner that can serve as a protective layer as you sleep.
For staying warm on particularly cold nights, the Sea to Summit Reactor Extreme is hard to beat. This liner is made from Thermolite fabric, which uses hollow-core fibers that better trap in heat.
In addition to keeping you warm, these hollow fibers are also very soft, providing plenty of next-to-skin comfort. It’s perfectly sized to fit into a mummy-style sleeping bag and also comes with a hood for added insulation.
The entire liner fits into an Ultra-Sil stuff sack for easy packing. As far as sleeping bag liners go, this model is a bit on the heavy and bulky side. But, all that extra weight and bulk is due to the Reactor Extreme’s added insulation, which can add 25ºF (15ºC) of warmth to your sleeping bag.
- Can make your sleeping bag up to 25ºF (15ºC) warmer
- Thermolite fabric provides next to skin comfort
- Includes an Ultra-Sil stuff sack
- Has a hood and mummy-shape for use with backpacking sleeping bags
- Fairly heavy for a liner
- Bulky packed size compared to silk models
If you spend a lot of time in hot environments, the Sea to Summit Adaptor Coolmax is a solid choice. This model is made from Coolmax, which is a stretchy knit fabric that’s designed to wick moisture away from the body.
Coolmax fabric is soft and comfortable but it also allows you to stay cool on warm evenings. Sea to Summit also makes this liner with Insect Shield protection, which is a good option if you’re camping somewhere that’s particularly buggy.
This liner weighs just 8.7oz, which is about average for the industry. It also has a mummy shape with a hood so it’s designed to fit well inside a backpacking sleeping bag. Finally, it comes with an Ultra-Sil stuff sack for easier transport to and from camp.
- Coolmax fabric is designed to keep you cool at night
- Options available with insect-repelling fabrics
- Included stuff sack for transport
- Mummy-style design fits well in sleeping bags
- Provides no insulation
The Friendly Swede’s Silk Liner is a travel-friendly option for globetrotters and campers, alike. One of the most affordable silk/polyester blend liners on the market today, this model feels soft against the skin.
It wicks away sweat, making it a good choice for warm evenings. Additionally, unlike many silk liners, this model is fully machine washable, so it’s easy to keep clean after a trip.
The Friendly Swede also designed it to be easy to enter and exit at night with a large side opening for added convenience. Plus, it stuffs into its own pocket, which doubles as a stuff sack, for more convenient packing.
- Highly affordable for a silk/polyester liner
- Stuffs into its own pocket for transport
- Fully machine washable
- Has large side opening for easy entry and exit
- Fairly heavy for a silk liner (8.4oz/237g)
The Coleman Stratus Fleece Liner is part sleeping bag, part liner. It’s made with 100% polyester fleece, which makes it feel cozy and warm at night.
Highly versatile, this liner can be used on its own to keep you warm in temperatures down to 50ºF (10ºC). Or, it can be used to line your sleeping bag to add an additional 12ºF (6ºC) of warmth on a cold night.
This liner is one of the most affordable options available and is ideal for campers up to 5’11” in height (180cm). For easier traveling, the Stratus Fleece also includes an elastic strap and a stuff sack.
- Can be used on its own as a sleeping bag on warm nights
- Very affordable
- Soft fleece fabric is comfortable against the skin
- Comes with a stuff sack and storage strap
- Bulky and heavy (1.65lbs/0.7kg)
- Not for tall campers
When it comes to quality, the Sea to Summit Premium Silk Travel Liner is a sure bet. This model is made from premium AA grade silk, which is super soft to the touch. It’s also weaved in a Ripstop pattern for added durability.
These liners are best for campers that spend a lot of time in warm environments because silk helps to wick away sweat. Plus, tightly woven silk provides a natural barrier against some insects.
However, Sea to Summit’s silk is still stretchy enough to allow you to move around comfortably at night. Finally, it weighs in at a miniscule 4.8oz (140g) and packs down into a small stuff sack for easy transport in the mountains.
- Lightweight and highly packable
- Super soft fabric
- Breathable and moisture-wicking
- Very expensive
Sleeping bag liners are a must, whether you’re camping or traveling the world. These versatile pieces of gear can keep you comfortable at night, regardless of the conditions.