Best cheap down sleeping bags for comfort on a budget

·6-min read
 (Unsplash)
(Unsplash)

Sleeping under the stars is one of the best things about camping, but it’s hard trying to gaze up at the cosmos when you’re shivering.

A sleeping bag is an essential if you’re planning overnight adventures in the great outdoors. There are hundreds of styles available, from designs for the lefties and XL ones to accommodate taller sleepers, as well as double sleeping bags designed for two to share.

On the luxury end of the scale, there are sleeping bags filled with natural down fluff which adds an extra cosy layer of insulation against late night and early morning temperatures.

Aside from keeping you exceptionally warm, opting for a down sleeping bag has lots of other benefits.

They are highly durable, and can withstand being stuffed repeatedly back into its carry sack without going lumpy or losing its warmth. This means they’ll go the distance. In fact, with proper care, a down sleeping bag can last up to 10 years or more - a long-term investment in camping adventures.

You also need less down to fill the same area than synthetic fibres, meaning they’re ultra-light. If you hike, camp or go to festivals often, you’ll know every pound of weight counts. A light and dependably warm sleeping bag is pretty much the Holy Grail.

Keep all these things in mind when shopping, because down sleeping bags aren’t exactly a budget buy compared to synthetic sleeping bags. That said, there are options at the cheaper end of the scale, starting from £105. When you consider that it will have a lifespan of more than 10 years, that works out to around a tenner a year.

So, if you go to an overnight festival, camp out a few times over the summer or host overnight visitors at home a few times in the year - well, the bag has earned its keep.

Below we’ve rounded up the best of the cheaper down-filled sleeping bags in price ascending order to invest in now and use for years to come.

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NatureHike White Ultralight Goose Down Rectangular Sleeping Bag

Perfect for hot sleepers, this rectangular-shaped sleeping bag gives you plenty of room to move and throw out an overheating limb to keep you at the optimal sleep temperature. It's filled with high quality white goose down and features a two way zipper so you can connect it with another bag if you're sharing with a partner. Warm, comfortable and compact for travel weighing 570g, use it for warm weather camping trips.

Buy now £105.00, Amazon

ALVIVO - Ibex Ultra Light - Down sleeping bag

Designed for trekking and general overnight trips, this sleeping bag is filled with nothing but RDS certified down fibres (meaning the filling comes from geese and ducks is in line with animal welfare practices). The classic mummy-shaped design weighs just 395g when packed (15 x 12cm) and works best in temperatures 7 - 18°C.

Buy now £106.35, Alpine Trek

EarthKind Reclaimed Natural Down Duvet, 4.5 Tog, Double

Not strictly a sleeping bag, but a great lightweight option if you're driving to your pitch for a weekend of laid-back camping, this EarthKind duvet is made from pre-loved feather and down, reclaiming elements that may have otherwise gone to landfill. It's super soft and perfect for summer with a tog rating of 4.5.

Pile it onto your inflatable mattress and sheets, and you won't be able to tell the difference from home.

Buy now £110.00, John Lewis

Forclaz Trekking Sleeping Bag

The French Alps: beautiful yes, but also an undoubtedly harsh environment. Forclaz’ sleeping bag has been designed in the region, and promises a comfortable night’s sleep in temperatures as low as 0°C, so it should stand up beautifully against English summer nights. The fill is made up of RDS certified feather and it weighs 945g. The mummy-shape gives shoulders enough wiggle room and it’s water-repellent too, so no need to fear early morning drips of condensation landing on you from the tent walls.

Available in S, M, L and XL sizes.

Buy now £139.99, Decathlon

Naturehike Snowbird Ultralight Duck Down Warm Sleeping Bag

You need only look at this sleeping bag to feel cosy. The plump, padded design uses 650FP high-quality white duck down as filler, helping to keep the bag lightweight at just 560g. It boasts a two-way zipper and shaped wrapping designs to cuddle you into a restful slumber every night. With a shrink cord on the hood and a 3D barrel bottom design, you’ll stay comfortable from head to toe.

Buy now £149.00, Amazon

Hyke & Byke Eolus 800 Fill Power Hydrophobic Goose Down Sleeping Bag

Serious about camping? Invest in Hyke & Byke’s Eolus sleeping bag, which can withstand frosty temperatures. Available in myriad colourways, the design is packed with Hydrophobic 800 FP Goose down fill that is breathable yet insulating. The long-lasting liner is made with ripstop fabric, adding to its durability and it’s water-repellant too. Comes in sizes Short, Regular, or Long (Tall / XL).

Buy now £149.97, Amazon

MARMOT Always Summer Down sleeping bag

Function is the most important thing when it comes to a high-performance sleeping bag, but one that looks good definitely edges over the competition. You’ll be the envy of your camp in Marmot’s ‘Always Summer’ down-filled sleeping bag, which features zips that close over the hood to fully encase you on particularly chilly nights.

In fact, it’s a dual-zip design, allowing you to easily slip in on either size, and there’s a zip closure at the bottom to free overheating feet or for midnight trips to the loo. You’ll also find a pocket in the lining so you can keep essentials close to hand. Weighs 830g and filled with DWR hydrophobic down.

Buy now £188.95, Alpine Trek

Rab Alpine 600 Down Sleeping Bag

You’ll laugh in the face of the cold with this baby on your side. Say hello to blissful warmth and comfort courtesy of Rab’s Alpine down sleeping bag, a low bulk design designed for mountaineering. The three-season bag boasts an Pertex Quantum outer, a hero fabric that’s durable and windproof - all while staying comfortable and breathable.

Packed with responsibly-sourced hand-filled hydrophobic duck down and lined with recycled nylon, it’s a considered design through and through. It weighs 1.05kg and boasts a trapezoidal boxwall construction to dial up the down’s loft as well as warmth. Toastiness is in the bag.

Buy now £221.00, Go Outdoors

Rab Ascent 700 Hydrophobic Down Sleeping Bag (Left Zip)

Plan outdoor adventures in three seasons knowing you’ll stay warm and cosy whatever you get up to thanks to Rab’s Ascent 700 Hydrophobic Down Sleeping Bag. The design is filled with 700g European Duck Down and surrounded by a highly durable Pertex Microlight inner and outer fabric, offering a feel of high quality throughout. If you move a lot while you sleep, the semi-rectangular shape of the sleeping bag offers less restrictions than a mummy-shaped bag, all while keeping your body heat where you want it - around you. Weighs 1.29kg and comes with a cotton stuff sack for easy carrying and storage.

Buy now £239.00, Go Outdoors

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