10 Best Backpacking Sleeping Bags for Women in 2021

10 Best Women’s Sleeping Bags

Sleeping bags are still the most popular nighttime insulation option with backpackers because they’re warmer in cold, damp, or drafty weather, especially below freezing. While mummy sleeping bag designs still prevail, there’s a lot more variety in the types of sleeping bags that have become available in the past five years, including women’s specific sleeping bags. Is it worth buying a women’s specific bag sleeping bag? You betcha, but they’re not as widely available as sleeping bags for men.

Here are our top 10 sleeping bag picks made especially for women.

1. REI Magma 30 – Women’s Sleeping Bag

REI Magma 15 Women’s Sleeping Bag
The REI Magma 15 is a women’s-specific sleeping bag designed with increased knee and foot space to deliver a high warmth-to-weight ratio. An insulated draft collar fills the neck and shoulder gap to seal in warmth and prevent heat loss when you move around at night, while a hybrid zipper path provides easy access along the shoulders and torso. The hood has space for a low-profile pillow and includes two different drawcords for a finely tuned fit.

The Magma 15 is insulated with 850+ fill power, water-resistant, goose down with a 15 denier Pertex lining to provide a super soft feel. Variable baffling keeps the down from shifting while reducing weight. The Magma 15 is available in 66″ and 72″ lengths weighing 2 lb 4 oz and 2 lb 6 oz.

Check out the latest price at:
REI

2. Sea to Summit Attitude At1 25 – Women’s Sleeping Bag

S2S Women’s Attitude At1 Sleeping Bag
The Sea to Summit Attitude At1 25 is specifically sized and shaped for women with a wider shape between the hips and knees to allow you to sleep in a natural position without compressing the down insulation and creating cold spots. Dual zippers on both side of the sleeping bag let you adjust your warm level while providing plenty of head mobility, uncommon in most mummy sleeping bags. Directional baffles and body-mapped insulation places extra insulation where you need it most. The Attitude also includes a shaped hood, oversized draft collar, and zipper draft tube to lock the heat in. A compression sack and storage bag are also included.

The Attitude 25 is insulated with 750 fill power Ultra-Dry duck down. It weighs 2 lbs 6.1 oz and is available in 5′ 7″ and 6′ lengths.

Check out the latest price at:
Sea to Summit | Backcountry

3. NEMO Riff 30 – Women’s Sleeping Bag

Nemo Riff 30
The NEMO Riff 30 is a spoon-shaped women’s sleeping bag with extra insulation in the feet and torso to keep you warm. Ideal for side sleepers, the Riff has front vents, called Thermo-Gills, that let you vent excess heat in warmer weather. A full-length double-slider zipper with a snag guard helps to further regulate warmth. A blanket fold at the base of the hood tucks around your neck and helps seal in the heat in colder temperatures, while the hood is large enough to hold a pillow in place.

Weighing 2 lbs 3 oz, the Riff 30 is available in two lengths, 5′ 6″ and 6′. It is insulated with 800+ fill power hydrophobic down.

Check out the latest price at:
Backcountry | REI  

4. NEMO Disco 15 – Women’s Sleeping Bag

Nemo Disco 15
The NEMO Disco 15 is a lightweight and luxurious sleeping bag with plenty of interior space for side sleepers and gear storage for cold nights. Like NEMO’s other spoon-shaped sleeping bags, the Disco 15 has front Therm-Gills that let you vent excess heat in warmer weather and a waterproof/breathable footbox protects against tent-wall condensation to help keep your feet warm and dry.  A blanket fold at the base of the hood tucks around your neck and helps seal in the heat in colder temperatures, while a zippered stash pocket keeps your phone or other essentials warm and within reach.

Weighing 2 lbs 15 oz, the Disco 15 is available in two lengths, 5′ 6″ and 6′. It is insulated with 650 fill power hydrophobic down.

Check out the latest price at:
REI | NEMO

5. Feathered Friends Egret UL 20 – Women’s Sleeping Bag

Feathered Friends Egret UL 20
The Feathered Friends Egret UL 20 is a top-shelf technical sleeping bag tailored for women that has extra fill in the footbox and around the chest. It also provides more room in the elbows, including space to draw your knees up in the bag if you like to sleep that way. The contoured hood opens wide in warmer weather and makes it easy for side sleepers to use, while a two-way zipper makes the bag easy to vent. The Egret has a draft collar to help seal in the heat around your shoulders, while a trapezoidal footbox allows your feet to fall in a natural pose without compressing the sides.

Available in two lengths: 5′ 3″ and 5′ 9″, the Egret UL 20 is insulated with 950+ fill power goose down and weighs just 1 lb 9.6 oz.

Check out the latest price at:
Feathered Friends

6. Marmot Phase 20 – Women’s Sleeping Bag

Marmot Phase 20 Women's
The Marmot Phase 20 (Women’s) is a female sleeping bag with more insulation in key areas where women experience heat loss. A tapered cut provides a narrower fit at the shoulders and a wider flare at the hips to ensure a comfortable fit and maximum thermal efficiency. A shorter 5′ 6″ length helps to avoid cold spots and make certain that your body isn’t working unnecessarily to heat uninhabited areas of the bag.

The Phase 20 is insulated with 850+ fill power goose down that’s been treated with a water-repellant coating. Weighing 1 lb 13 oz, the Phase 20 is ideal for women who want to slash pack weight without compromising on sleeping comfort.

Check out the latest price at:
Marmot | Backcountry | Amazon 

7. Marmot Xenon 15 – Women’s Sleeping Bag

Marmot Xenon 15
The Marmot Xenon 15 is made specifically for women with increased room at the hips, decreased room at the shoulders, and extra insulation in female heat-loss areas. An anatomically shaped footbox with wraparound construction eliminates seams and has extra insulation to keep your feet toasty. The ergonomic hood has extra baffles to reduce heat loss and keep your head warm and comfortable. A “fold-down” second zipper lets you fold down the front of the bag to vent excess heat and makes it easier to get in and out of the bag.

The Xenon 15 is insulated with 800 fill power, water-resistant goose down. It weighs 2 lbs 6 oz and comes in a 5′ 6″ length.

Check out the latest price at:
Marmot | Backcountry | Amazon

8. Marmot Angel Fire 25 – Women’s Sleeping Bag

Marmot Angel Fire
The Marmot Angel Fire 25 is sized for women with increased room in hips and extra insulation in key heat-loss areas including the footbox. It has a multi-baffled hood that envelops your head in warmth, with a down-filled collar to prevent body heat from escaping when you move around at night. The bag also has a full-length 2-way zipper backed by a draft tube to block drafts

Weighing 2 lbs 7.5 oz, the Angel Fire 25 is insulated with 650 fill power Dri Defender down and available in 5′ 6″ and 5’10” lengths.

Check out the latest price at:
Marmot | Backcountry

9. Kelty Galactic 30 – Women’s Sleeping Bag

Kelty Galactic 30
The Kelty Galactic 30 is a hoodless sleeping bag insulated with water-resistant DriDown that’s great for women who don’t like the confinement of a mummy sleeping bag. It was a full-length side zipper that can be joined with another Galactic 30 to make a double sleeping bag. A top drawstring closes the bag’s top baffle around your neck and over your shoulders to lock in warmth. When using the Galactic 30 you’ll want to wear a warm hat to a hooded insulated jacket to prevent heat loss through your head. Even then you’ll appreciate the added comfort that a hoodless sleeping bag provides.

Weighing 2 lbs 9 oz, the Galactic 30 is insulated with 550 fill power DriDown and available in 5′ 8″.  We like this bag because it is such a great value and surprisingly warm and packable.

Check out the latest price at:
Kelty | REI | Amazon

10. Sierra Designs Backcountry Bed 20 – Women’s

Sierra Designs BackcountryBed 20 Womens
The Sierra Designs Backcountry Bed 20 is a zipperless hybrid sleeping bag with a vented footbox. While it has a mummy shape that encircles your torso and legs, a comforter is used to insulate your chest on cool nights. It’s easily moved aside in warm weather, so you can use it like a blanket and vent extra warmth. The Backcountry Bed also has a rear sleeve that slides over your sleeping pad to save weight and ensure that so you don’t roll off your sleeping pad at night.

Weighing 2 lbs 7 oz, the Sierra Designs Backcountry Bed 20 is insulated with 700 fill power water-resistant down and available in a 5′ 8″ length.

Check out the latest price at:
Sierra Designs | Amazon

How to Choose Women’s Sleeping Bags

Here is a list of the most important factor to consider when purchasing a sleeping bag for backpacking, so it fits your needs and preferences.

What to Look for in a Sleeping Bag

When choosing a sleeping bag for backpacking, you want one that’s warm, lightweight, and highly compressible since you’re going to have to haul it in a backpack. Sleeping bags insulated with 800, 850, 900, and 950 goose down or duck down are the best in terms of warmth by weight, but you’ll pay a premium at the top end. Fit is also important, both width and length, especially if you’re a short woman or have a smaller build. If a bag is too large, it will feel colder than one that fits closely, since your body needs to work harder to fill the extra space with hot air.

Female-Specific Sleeping Bag Needs

Women require more insulation than men because they have less body mass to generate body heat. Add another 10 degrees if you’re female and decide to buy a “unisex” sleeping bag instead of a women’s specific bag. Women also tend to have colder extremities, like feet, hands, and heads and require more insulation in those areas. They also have narrower shoulders and are predominantly shorter, requiring sleeping bags that are cut differently than their male counterparts.

How to Understand Sleeping Bag Temperature Ratings

The introduction of standardized sleeping bag temperature ratings by the outdoor industry substantially improved their reliability. Bags tested with the European Norm (EN) 13537 get two ratings: a Comfort rating and Lower limit rating. The Comfort rating is the lowest temperature at which the bag will keep the average woman (or “cold sleeper”) comfortable, and the Lower Limit rating is the lowest temperature at which the bag will keep an average man (or “warm sleeper”) comfortable. The difference in the Comfort and Lower Limit ratings is usually about 10 degrees since women feel colder than men when sleeping. If you’re a woman and decide to buy a men’s or unisex bag, get one that’s 10 degrees warmer than you need so you’re comfortable at night.

Female Sleeping Bag Sizing

The fit of a sleeping bag is usually measured in terms of length and girth. Girth measures the maximum internal circumference of the bag, usually at the shoulders, hips, and feet. Measure yourself at these points and compare them to the girth to see if the bag will fit tightly or loosely. People with bigger shoulders or side sleepers tend to feel more comfortable in bags with higher shoulder girths, while women typically need a shorter length bag and a smaller shoulder girth because they have narrower shoulders than men. It’s important to get a bag that minimizes the amount of unoccupied interior space relative to your measurements, so your body has less air to heat up to stay warm.

Insulation and Compressibility

High-quality goose and duck down with fill powers of 800, 850, 900, and 950 provide excellent insulation by weight and are widely preferred by backpackers and base campers because they’re so lightweight. Some manufacturers only offer down that’s been treated with a water-repellent coating, while others prefer to offer it unadulterated. Down is naturally water-resistant so the jury is still out on whether “treated” down makes a difference in the long-term since it’s easy to keep your sleeping bag dry with a little care.

Sleeping Bag Weight

While gear weight is important, be careful not to sacrifice your comfort by selecting a sleeping bag that won’t keep you warm or dry in the conditions you need it to.  When choosing between bags with different outer shell fabrics, consider their breathability, so they will vent perspiration that can degrade your insulation, and whether they have a DWR coating, which can be important if the foot of your quilt gets wet regularly.

Sleeping Bag Features

Most sleeping bags are pretty similar when it comes right down to it, but there are some features that set premium sleeping bags apart from non-premium bags. These include draft collars, continuous baffles, very high fill-power goose down, non-snagging zippers, draft tubes positioned behind zippers to seal out the cold, ventable foot boxes, and full-length zippers that help extend the range of a bag in warmer weather.

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