Therm-a-Rest ProLite - Women's Review
Compare prices at 2 resellers Pros: Lightweight, compact, versatile, non-slip surface, self-inflating
Cons: Low R-value, not as comfortable as other thicker pads, bulkier and heavier than others
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Our Analysis and Test Results
The lightest and smallest self-inflating sleeping pad we tested, the Therm-A-Rest ProLite falls a little short in the warmth and comfort departments. Therm-a-Rest has given it an updated one-way valve system that helps with inflation and durability.
With new testing standards, the ProLite has been downgraded to an R-value of 2.7. This is one of the lowest R-values in our fleet. We recommend this pad for summer camping as long as the temperatures don't drop too low. We would not recommend sleeping on snow with the ProLite, but if you want to extend the season of this pad, you could supplement its warmth by pairing it with a lightweight foam pad.
Compared to standard non-inflatable foam pads like the Therm-A-Rest Z Lite Sol, the ProLite is a definite step up in comfort. Our testers found it to be relatively comfortable; however, it is only one inch thick and is the thinnest inflatable air mattress we tested. It is also slightly narrower than other foam pads we've reviewed. If you're looking for comfort, any of the other pads in this review would be a better choice.
The ProLite shines in this category. Though it is the lightest inflatable pad we tested, it is also one of the most durable. It features a burly 70 Denier fabric on its bottom, making it much tougher than the pads with fragile 20-30 Denier materials. A testament to its durability is that one tester used the women's ProLite for her entire thru-hike of the Pacific Crest Trail, and she never had to patch it once. The new ProLite is a darker red color and shows dirt less than previous models. With its valve upgrade, this model is probably more durable as there had been complaints that the old valve would leak easily.
The ProLite weighs in at one pound two ounces, making it one of the lightest self-inflating sleeping pads we tested. It is not as lightweight or cushy as others in this review, but it is a much more affordable option and is more comfortable than a standard non-inflating pad.
At 10 x 4.25 inches, the ProLite also has the smallest packed size of all the self-inflating mattresses we tested, though it is nowhere near the smallest packed size overall.
The ProLite is not a great value, and there are better pads out there for the same price or less money. You can spend $10 more and get a comparable model, some of which are almost double the warmth and more comfortable, but also heavier and bulkier.
If you're looking for something small, light, durable, and self-inflating, especially in a women's version, the ProLite may be ideal. If you are going somewhere where abrasion or rough, unprotected sleeping conditions are likely — such as the desert - the ProLite would be a good choice. We like all of the above-mentioned things about this pad, but wish that it were just a little warmer and more comfortable.
— Jessica Haist