The Best Sleeping Pad For Women Review

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We tested six women's specific sleeping pads. From lightest to heaviest: Therm-a-Rest NeoAir XLite, ProLite, ProLite Plus, Pacific Outdoor Equipment Peak Oyl Mtn, REI Lite-core 1.5, REI Trekker 1.75
Credit: Outdoor Gear Lab
Women’s sleeping pads are slightly shorter and slightly warmer than their traditional counterparts. Based on the results from our primary sleeping pad review we selected six of the top women’s specific models and went head-to-head, putting female bodies on female pads. Our reviews identify the single best all-purpose pad and the next best performer.

Read the full review below >

Review by:

Top Ranked Women's Sleeping Pads Displaying 1 - 5 of 5 << Previous | View All | Next >>
Our Ranking #1 #2 #3 #4 #5
Product Name
Therm-a-Rest NeoAir XLite Women's
Therm-a-Rest NeoAir XLite Women's
Read the Review
Therm-a-Rest ProLite Plus Women's
Therm-a-Rest ProLite Plus Women's
Read the Review
Pacific Outdoor Equipment Peak Oyl Mtn womens
Pacific Outdoor Equipment Peak Oyl Mtn womens
Read the Review
Therm-a-Rest ProLite Women's
Therm-a-Rest ProLite Women's
Read the Review
REI Lite-Core 1.5 - Women's
REI Lite-Core 1.5 - Women's
Read the Review
Editors' Awards  Editors' Choice Award      Top Pick Award   
Street Price Varies $123 - $160
Compare at 6 sellers
Varies $82 - $110
Compare at 6 sellers
$95
Compare at 1 sellers
Varies $82 - $100
Compare at 7 sellers
$85
Overall Score 
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56
Editors' Rating
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User Rating Be the first to rate itBe the first to rate itBe the first to rate itBe the first to rate itBe the first to rate it
Pros Very light, super compact, comfortable, versatile, warmer than normal XLite.Comfortable, warm, non-slip surface.Anti-slip top keeps sleeping bag in place, air rails help keep you on pad, bluesign certified.Lightweight, compact, versatile, non-slip surface.Comfortable, durable, quick twist inflation valve, includes stuff sack.
Cons Edges collapse when weighted, noisy, expensive.Heavier and bulkier than Therm-a-Rest ProLite and Nemo Zor.Heavy.Thicker pads (such as NeoAirs) are more comfortable, heavier and bulkier than Nemo Zor.Packs larger than Therm-a-Rest ProLite and Nemo Zor; weighs more, too.
Best Uses All ultralight activities,This pad can be a luxurious alternative to the ProLite if you don’t mind carrying another half pound.Luxurious three-season backpacking, base camping, car camping.Light and fast activities such as international travel, alpine climbing, and backpacking.Car camping and backpacking.
Date Reviewed Feb 14, 2013Feb 04, 2012Feb 04, 2012Feb 05, 2012Jun 20, 2011
Weighted Scores Therm-a-Rest NeoAir XLite Women's Therm-a-Rest ProLite Plus Women's Pacific Outdoor Equipment Peak Oyl Mtn womens Therm-a-Rest ProLite Women's REI Lite-Core 1.5 - Women's
Warmth - 20%
10
0
7
10
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9
10
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8
10
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5
10
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6
Comfort - 20%
10
0
8
10
0
7
10
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7
10
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5
10
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9
Durability - 20%
10
0
5
10
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7
10
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7
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7
10
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7
Weight - 20%
10
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10
10
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7
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4
Packed Size - 20%
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6
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2
Product Specs Therm-a-Rest NeoAir XLite Women's Therm-a-Rest ProLite Plus Women's Pacific Outdoor Equipment Peak Oyl Mtn womens Therm-a-Rest ProLite Women's REI Lite-Core 1.5 - Women's
Type Air/ baffles Air/ foam Air/ foam Air/ foam Air/ foam
R Value 3.9 4.6 4.5 2.8 3.2
Packed Volume (liter) 0.74 3.26 5 2.26 6
Weight (oz.) 11 21 22 16 25
Length (in) 66 66 66 66 66
Width (in) 20 20 20 20 20
Thickness (in.) 2.5 1.5 1.5 1 1.5

OutdoorGearLab Editors' Hands-on Review


  • Review Photos
  • Editors' Choice Winners
  • All Reviewed Products

What is a Women’s Sleeping Pad?
Women are different from men! We sleep slightly colder and are generally shorter then men. Several sleeping pad makers have acknowledged this and make pads specifically for us. Being 66” in length, or 5’ 6”, all women’s pads are six inches shorter than standard pads. They also have a slightly different internal construction that makes them warmer. Women’s specific sleeping pads are best for people 5’ 6” in height or less, or anyone who wants a slightly warmer sleeping pad.

Construction Type and Criteria For Evaluation
Women’s pads are only available in self-inflating foam and structurally insulated air core constructions. We evaluated each sleeping pad based on the following criteria.

Weight
Structurally insulated air core pads are generally lighter than self-inflating foam pads. Weighing a mere 11 oz., the Therm-a-Rest NeoAir XLite is the lightest mattress tested. At 32 oz. the REI Trekker 1.75 is the heaviest pad tested.

Packed Size
Foam makes a sleeping pad bulkier. The Therm-a-Rest NeoAir XLite is shockingly compact – it takes up less than three quarters of a liter and can fit inside a jacket pocket. The REI Trekker 1.75, the largest pad tested, was ten times the size of the NeoAir XLite.

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The Therm-a-Rest NeoAir XLite Women's (top right) packs the smallest of all the NeoAir pads shown here. Others, from left to right: AllSeason, XTherm, XLite Regular, and Z Lite Sol.
Credit: Max Neale
Durability
Though they don’t come in women’s specific versions, closed cell foam pads are the most durable sleeping pad available. Out of the women’s pads tested here the REI Trekker 1.75 was the most durable and the NeoAir XLite was least durable.

Comfort
Here we evaluated how well each pad transformed rocks and roots into plush heavenly clouds. Although comfort is subjective – and one can quickly become inured to pains of the thin, ultralight pad – we came to the following general conclusions: thicker pads cushion the hips and knees better than thinner pads; flat surfaces are more comfortable for putting your head on than bumpy surfaces; grippier fabrics keep you and your pad attached for longer, and square pads offer more surface area, and are therefore more comfortable, than mummy shaped pads. Of the six women’s specific sleeping pads tested here the REI Trekker 1.75 was thickest and most comfortable. The Therm-a-Rest ProLite was the least comfortable. If comfort is top priority, check out our Car Camping Mattress review.

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Julia enjoys the luxurious comfort of the Marmot Plasma sleeping bag, Big Agnes Copper Spur UL2, and Therm-a-Rest ProLite. Perfect for reading the New Yorker.
Credit: Max Neale
Warmth
A pad’s ability to insulate you from the cold below is a crucial concern for winter users when the temperature difference between your body and the ground can exceed 60 degrees. Two main factors influence warmth: a pad’s thickness (thicker is warmer) and air circulation (more reduces warmth). Therm-a-Rest’s NeoAir series breaks the interior space up in an effort to reduce air circulation. Pads with foam in them do the same thing. The Therm-a-Rest ProLite Plus was the warmest women’s specific pad we tested.

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Hannah Waight slept on the Therm-a-Rest NeoAir XLite Women's at -10 F. Mt. Katahdin, Maine.
Credit: Max Neale
Inflation Method and Storage
You breath contains water vapor that can damage a sleeping pad over time. In warm weather vapor from your lungs enters the pad when you inflate it and leaves the pad when you deflate it. In cold weather, however, water vapor condenses into liquid form and remains inside the pad even after deflation. For winter camping we recommend inflating a pad with the Therm-a-Rest NeoAir Pump Sack.

Bottom Line
Our Editors' Choice award goes to the Therm-a-Rest NeoAir XLite Women's, the highest performance all-purpose women’s sleeping pad on the market. The XLite’s impressive warmth to weight ratio, comfortable design, low weight, and small packed size establish it firmly as the ultimate four-season multi-day sleeping pad for women.

Our Top Pick award is presented to the Therm-a-Rest ProLite Women's, which presents a reasonably lightweight, comfortable, and affordable sleeping pad for three-season use.

Best Pads for Specific Applications (includes non-women’s specific pads
Ultralight backpacking: Therm-a-Rest NeoAir XLite Women's.
Winter backpacking and mountaineering: Therm-a-Rest NeoAir XTherm.
Winter base camping: Exped DownMat 9.
Alpine climbing: Therm-a-Rest Z-Lite SOL cut in half.
Big wall climbing: Therm-a-Rest Ridge Rest SOLite cut in half for low angle routes and Therm-a-Rest NeoAir XLite for steep routes.
Budget backpacking: Therm-a-Rest Z-Lite SOL.
Car camping: See our Car Camping Mattress review.

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Tressa Gibbard inflates the NeoAir Trekker at the base of the Incredible Hulk, High Sierra, CA.
Credit: Max Neale

Lita Collins and Max Neale
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