Unfortunately, the Therm-a-Rest LuxuryLite Mesh thoroughly failed to impress us in the bulk of our assessments. This cot can be downright baffling to put together the first time and doesn't get much easier with practice. It's not terribly comfortable, and the cot we tested almost immediately started to show signs of wear and tear. We will concede that this cot is easy to carry, but that's about it.
Therm-a-Rest LuxuryLite Mesh Review
Cons: Very hard to put together, doesn’t seem very durable
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Our Analysis and Test Results
We can't stress enough how much of a hassle the Therm-a-Rest LuxuryLite Mesh is to put together. It's not an exaggeration to say that we dreaded every time we had to assemble or disassemble this product.
Ease of Setup
The Therm-a-Rest LuxuryLite Mesh got off to a rough start with a very poor showing in our most important series of tests, earning a 3 out of 10 in this metric, which is responsible for 40% of the final score.
In the length we tested, this cot consists of six legs, two side rails, and the mesh fabric piece. We found that it took 15-20 minutes to set up or break down this cot, even once we had done it a handful of times, mainly due to the struggle to get each leg into position.
You need to bend the bow frames quite severely to get them into the position where they will clip onto the side rails. Additionally, we found it very easy to miss the side rail and accidentally clip the legs on the mesh fabric alone, stretching and damaging it. We also struggled every time we were breaking down this cot, finding it to be almost as much or even more of a hassle to unclip each leg.
On top of all that, you have to be very meticulous when packing up all the components of this cot if you want them to fit back into their carrying case.
We will admit the Therm-a-Rest LuxuryLite Mesh did redeem itself a bit when it came to being easy to carry — but not by much, earning an 8 out of 10. In this metric, we looked at how much the Therm-a-Rest LuxuryLite Mesh weighs, its packed size, and how easy it is to carry. These assessments combined account for 30% of the LuxuryLite Mesh's overall score.
The Therm-a-Rest LuxuryLite Mesh weighs just a bit less than four and a half pounds. It measures around 7"x18" when folded and wouldn't be too horrible to strap to a pack. We wouldn't want to hike super far with it — and get shamed by the ultralight backpackers in the process — but you could take it backpacking if you can afford the extra 2-3 pounds.
Next, we rated and ranked how comfortable each of these camping cots are, which is responsible for 20% of the final score for each product. The Therm-a-Rest LuxuryLite Mesh scored a bit below average compared to the rest of the cots, earning it a 4 out of 10.
This cot is very close to the ground, so it isn't the easiest thing to get on or off of. Additionally, the vast majority of people will bottom out the mesh unless they are laying down and evenly distributing their weight, so you don't really have the option to use this product as a chair or bench.
We did like that there aren't bars for you to smack your head or ankles on at the top or bottom of the cot but this does leave the Therm-a-Rest LuxuryLite Mesh a little lacking when it comes to support under your head. It is a relatively narrow cot, so most people will hit the side rails if you move your knees or elbows to the side but not usually in a way that hurts too bad.
Our last rating metric dealt with the durability of the Therm-a-Rest LuxuryLite Mesh and the other cots, which accounts for the remaining tenth of their total score. We based points on how well each cot withstood our comprehensive testing process, its rated weight limit, and our overall impression of the design and constructions of the Therm-a-Rest LuxuryLite Mesh. It didn't do the best, meriting a 3 out of 10.
This cot is rated for 350 pounds, but we were not impressed with its durability — at least of the one we tested. There was plenty of obvious wear and tear by the end of our testing, with visible stretch marks on the fabric where the legs had strained it and one leg that seems to have gotten permanently bowed after only a handful of times.
The Therm-a-Rest LuxuryLite Mesh is a little less expensive than some of the other ultralight cot options out there, but its poor showing in our durability metric makes us reluctant to say it's a good bargain option.
All in all, it's a struggle for us to articulate a reason to recommend this cot. We thought it was a gigantic hassle to assemble and showed much more wear and tear than we would have liked by the end of our testing period. It's not a cheap product by any means, and its main selling point is its portability, which is easily eclipsed by some of the other backpacking cots currently available. It's not the cot for us, and we don't think it's the cot for you either.
— Marissa Fox