If you are in search of a self-inflating camping pad, check this list with some truly impressive pads from top brands, quality and reliable products suitable for all seasons.
A few words about self-inflating sleeping pads
Why using self-inflating pads?
In one of my separate posts, I have described these pads together with some other types that are presently available on the market. Therefore here I wish only to stress that these are pads filled with open-cell foam. The structure of the foam is similar to a sponge, the cells are interconnected and the air can pass from one to another, and also it can go out of in.
If you compare them with closed-cell foam pads, typically self-inflating pads are heavier, but at the same time, they are far more comfortable. Yet another reason for using them is that they are nicely packable.
On the other hand, if you compare them with some of the inflatable sleeping pads, you will realize they are heavier. This is normal to expect because of the mentioned foam. However, even if such self-inflating pads become punctured, you will still have the foam underneath you, and this is not so in the case of inflatable pads where you would end up on the cold and uncomfortable ground.
What R-value can you expect?
The mentioned foam implies that you have some insulation here, and this is related to the R-value. The more foam usually means more insulation and a higher R-value. Though this is not so simple, some have air channels added to shed the weight, and air trapped inside is an insulator itself.
So you will see a variety of options in the list below, and you will realize that you have here self-inflating camping pads for all seasons.
How self-inflating camping mattresses work?
Typically this is a foam protected by a piece of fabric from outside. When you unroll the pad and open the valve, the pad soaks in the air. When it is self-inflated, you can manually add some air if needed and tighten the valve. Some may need more air than others, you will see some very thick sleeping pads here.
Are they bulky?
- Yes, they are, if you compare with inflatable (air) pads. Even the most packable self-inflating pads are still bulkier than top-class air pads. You can read about several best inflatable sleeping pads in my separate post.
- No, they are not, if you compare with closed-cell foam pads.
So, by features, self-inflating pads are in various ways between closed-cell foam pads and air pads.
My list of best self-inflating sleeping pads
Here is the list with the mattresses ordered by R-value from lower to higher:
When you inspect the list you will realize that you have pads suitable for the trail and for car camping. The latter are bulkier, heavier, but far more comfortable as well.
1. Coleman Self-Inflating Camping Pad with Pillow
This Coleman Self-Inflating Camping Pad with Pillow is self-inflating and this is why it is here, but they do not provide the R-value and this is why it is in this position in the list. You have some foam inside so it should insulate you from the ground, but you can only try and see how it works.
In any case, this is a reliable and easy to use camping pad with an incredible price tag and these are the reasons for having it here in the list. Note also that it has a pillow which is useful to have. It weighs 6.4 lb (2.9 kg) so you would not carry it anywhere, this is for car camping.
2. KingCamp Double Self Inflating Camping Sleeping Pad
This KingCamp Double Self Inflating Camping Sleeping Pad is large and pleasant. It comes with two bonus self-inflating pillows filled with same type of foam. The manufacturer did not provide the R-value so there is no way to know it. My guess is that it must be at least 2-3.
The pad has a triple-zone design and you can see this in the picture above. A carry bag is included. It weighs 9.7 lb (4.4. kg) and the thickness is 1.6 inches (4 cm).
3. YOUKADA Sleeping Pad Foam Self-Inflating Camping Mat
This Youkada sleeping pad comes with a memory foam that definitely provides decent insulation, but the manufacturer did not provide any information. So there is no way to know, but there is no doubt that you can use in all weather conditions in a 3-season use.
It is self-inflating of course, and it comes with inflatable pillows that must be inflated separately. This is a very comfortable double-wide pad that offers 74 x 52.8 inches (188 x 134 cm) of cushion for sleeping. Note that it is not very thick, you have 1.4 inches (4.5 cm). But it comes with an incredible price tag.
4. Therm-a-Rest Trail King SV Sleeping Pad
Here you have a unique hybrid design that includes a self-inflating foam and air baffles construction. They included a dual valve system, classic, and SV where the SV stands for SpeedValve. This is a very durable sleeping pad with a strong top and bottom fabric.
They build it in two sizes regular (R) and long (L). The R-value is 1.8 and this makes it a pad for warm-weather camping. But see also the weight which is only 1 lb 13 oz (0.83 kg) for the size R, so this makes it lightweight enough to be carried on shorter hiking and backpacking tours. The packed size is also great 11 x 6.6 inches (28 x 17 cm) for the size R.
5. CAMEL CROWN Camping Sleeping Pad
This CAMEL CROWN Camping Sleeping Pad is self-inflating and this is why it is here. With its R-value 2 it is suitable for 2-season camping. The fabric is waterproof, and it comes with an inflatable pillow of the same material and with the same foam fill.
There is also a carry bag shown in the picture. The pad weighs 5.07 lb (2.3 kg) so this is for car camping. It is 2 inches (5.1 cm) thick, and you will want to know that it is also incredibly affordable.
6. Klymit KLYMALOFT Sleeping Pad
This Klymit KLYMALOFT Sleeping Pad is a hybrid construction, it is both inflatable and self-inflating. So you have one part of the pad that is only filled with air (this is the part on the right in the picture), and the other part has two layers, one with self-inflating foam and one with air.
This is quite a unique construction, and I do not remember anything similar on the market to compare. The pad comes with a durable fabric and this makes is a bit heavy for the trail. It weighs 38.5 oz (1089 g). It is built it in one size only. The R-value of 2.1 is modest, this makes it a pad suitable for two seasons.
7. NEMO Flyer Sleeping Pad
If you want something unique, this NEMO Flyer Sleeping Pad is the right choice. You may not see much from outside, the real thing is inside.
This is an advanced ultralight and ultra-packable insulated 3-season self-inflating pad with the R-value 3.3, and they use the new ASTM Standard (ASTM F3340-18) introduced recently. I blogged about this new system in my separate text.
You have a non-slip bottom, they build it in three sizes, and the weight of the Regular size is 1 lb 7 oz (652 g).
8. Therm-a-Rest Prolite Plus Ultralight Self-Inflating Backpacking Pad
This Therm-a-Rest Prolite Plus is ultralight as the title suggests, it weighs only 1 lb 7 oz (0.65 kg) so this is a trail item. See also the packed size which is only (L x D) 11 x 4.8 inches (28 x 12 cm) for the size R. They build it in three different sizes.
The R-value is 3.4 and this makes it a true 3-season sleeping pad and it offers 1.5 inches (3.8 cm) of thickness. The insulation is achieved by their exclusive Atmos foam which is very light and also very compressible. This is a patent-pending diagonal-cut foam that self inflates very quickly. You might want to know it is built in the USA.
9. KingCamp Luxury 3D Double Self-Inflating Sleeping Pad
This KingCamp Luxury 3D Double Self-Inflating Sleeping Pad is moderately thick and with a foam that provides an effective R-value of 4.7. So this is why it is in such a position here in the list, and you can use it in all seasons. The pad is very comfortable long and wide, suitable for two people, the dimensions are 79.1 x 50.3 inches (201 x 128 cm).
It comes with a storage bag included, and its weight is 10.6 lb (4.8 kg). So clearly this is not something to carry around, you will use it at places with a car access. It is also very affordable.
10. Klymit Self-Inflate V Sleeping Pad
This brand is famous for its inflatable pads, but here you have something new from them. As far as I remember this is their first self-inflating pad on the market. It is still with their iconic V shape baffles in the design although not as prominent as in their other pads.
The pad comes with insulation that gives 5.3 R-value which is roughly equivalent to the temperature rating of -4 F (-20 C). So this is a sleeping pad for all seasons. The shell is 30D stretch polyester on the top and 75D polyester on the bottom.
The pad weighs 2.9 lb (1300 g) so it is lightweight for an insulated pad, and this is the reason for adding it here; you can use it also for shorter overnight tours away from your car parking. You might want to know that it is incredibly affordable.
11. Therm-a-Rest BaseCamp Self-Inflating Sleeping Pad
This is again one from the Therm-a-Rest brand, and it is light enough to be carried on shorter trails, its R size weighs only 2 lb 8 oz (1.14 kg). So obviously it is much lighter than most of the pads here in the list and this is a versatile pad. The thickness is 2 inches (5 cm), and this is a pad suitable for car camping and also for hiking.
The pad is built in three sizes so you can find your best fit. The open-cell foam inside gives you good insulation with the R-value 5.8. So the pad is suitable for all seasons. You might want to know also that it is very affordable for such a type and for such a top brand.
12. TETON Sports ComfortLite Sleeping Pad
This TETON Sports ComfortLite Sleeping Pad is self-inflating and they build it in three different sizes. Having a foam inside, it is also insulated and the declared R-value is in the range 4.4-5.9 dependent on the size.
A great feature here is that it has Velcro along the sides so you can attach it to other pads of this type and create a large continuous sleeping area.
A carry bag is included and the regular size weighs 3.6 lb (1.6 kg), so it is a bit heavy to carry in the pack, this is why it is in the list here. It is also very affordable.
13. Big Agnes Hinman Double Wide sleeping pad
This pad is built in several sizes, just to know if you buy them for family members, but my focus here is on its double-wide version which is designed to work with doublewide sleeping bags from the same brand.
So this Hinman Double pad is very stable and it does not shake when you move on it, this makes it a great choice for couples, you will not be disturbed too much when your partner moves on the pads.
The pad is insulated and suitable for all seasons, they do not provide the R-value but they give the temperature rating instead. This is equivalent to the R-value roughly in the range 6 – 7.
With its 78 x 50 inches (198 x 127 cm) dimensions, this sleeping pad delivers optimal comfort. The thickness is 2.5 inches (6.3 cm), and note that this is a high-density solid foam that offers great insulation and comfort. The exterior is a PU-coated polyester for better water resistance. It is a very quiet material, you might want to know if you are very sensitive. The weight is 114 oz (3.23 kg) so this is a car camping item.
The pad is with dual valves at the top. Note that it is very compactly packed when it comes from the manufacturer, so it may take much more time to self-inflate than what you may be used to. It is a good idea to inflate it first with some pump so that it can expand properly. Deflate and pack after that and use it as you would use any self-inflating pad. Because of such a dense core, the pad comes with two compression straps which you see in the picture above, and there is no stuff sack included.
14. Therm-a-Rest Luxury Map sleeping pad
This pad has a urethane core foam. Its stand out feature is the Pressure Mapping system used to provide optimal support where it is most needed. This is something similar to what you have in the Klymit pads. The meaning is that they measured the pressure created by the body in various sleeping positions, and introduced an innovative die-cut foam to provide comfort and support at the right places. As a result, you have a more even and supportive sleep surface. This is probably the origin of the word Map in the name of this pad.
The effective insulation provides an R-value of 6.8. So it is in the range of pads for any weather. They build it in three sizes, R, L, and XL, so you have enough options to choose from. The materials are 50D polyester knit on the top and 75D polyester on the bottom.
15. ALPS Mountaineering Apex Self-Inflating Air Pad
This ALPS Mountaineering Apex Self-Inflating Air Pad is built in three different sizes. With its R-value of 6.9 and its two brass valves, this is a reliable and easy to use 4-season pad.
The regular size pad weighs 4 lb 14 oz (2.2 kg), and its packed size is 22.5 x 9 inches (57 x 23 cm), so it is quite heavy and bulky, so this is not a pad to be carried on the trail.
16. ALPS Mountaineering Lightweight Self-Inflating Double Air Pad
Here you have something quite unique. This is a double sleeping pad that can be split into two separate single pads, or you can simply fold it and use it as a very thick solo pad. This is because of a hook and loop Velcro connection that runs in the middle. So this is a 2-in-1 design.
The R-value is 6.9 if you use it as a double pad, so you can use it in all seasons. But when you fold it, the R-value is higher by factor 2 which means close to 14, so you can use it in the harshest conditions.
The weight is such that it is most suitable for car camping but if you take half of it, then it can be carried on shorter overnight hiking tours. The total pad’s weight is 9 lb 7 oz (4.28 kg).
17. NEMO Roamer Self-Inflating Sleeping Pad
This is an incredibly comfortable pad and you can realize this already from the picture. It is built in two sizes and they both provide 4 inches (10.2 cm) thickness. This is thick enough even for side sleepers.
Obviously, it is in the list because it is self-inflating due to the foam inside which provides great insulation. The temperature rating for this pad is -30 F (-34 C) and this is close to 7.5 R-value. So what you have here is a camoing pad for all seasons.
The larger version (XLW) is with the dimensions 80 x 30 inches (203 x 76 cm) so it is suitable even for very tall people. It weighs 5 lb 4 oz (2.38 kg) and it is surprisingly well packable.
18. QOMOTOP Ultra Thick Self-Inflating Camping Mattress
This QOMOTOP Ultra Thick Self-Inflating Camping Mattress is a self-inflating pad as its name says, and its stuff sack doubles as an inflation sack in the case you need to blow more air in.
It weighs 13.6 lb (6.2 kg), and its dimensions are 80 x 52 inches (203 x 132 cm), so it is also in my list of best car camping sleeping pads. The pad comes with a 9.5 R-value so it is suitable even for extreme cold. This is a double-size pad and comfortable even for side sleepers with its 4 inches (10 cm) foam.
19. Exped Megamat 10 Insulated Self-Inflating Sleeping Pad Duo
This is one of the best-known pads from this brand and they build it in a variety of sizes. The one in the picture here is its duo version which offers incredible comfort and warmth.
You have a laminated polyester surface fabric and a high-grade open-cell polyurethane foam for insulation. Horizontal air channels are cored through the foam to reduce its weight.
It comes with 2 wide and low-profile FlatValves for inflation and deflation, high-frequency welded seams, a height-adjustable roll-top Smart Pack Sack with carry strap that doubles as a shoulder bag. You have a minipump for inflation included.
The R-value is 9.5, so this is a pad suitable even for extremely cold conditions. The thickness here is 3.9 inches (9.9 cm).
20. WELLAX UltraThick FlexFoam Sleeping Pad
This WELLAX UltraThick FlexFoam Sleeping Pad comes with a memory foam and its declared R-value is 9.6, so now you realize why it is in such a position here in the list.
So this is an impressive insulated pad for all seasons and climates, with a quiet ripstop fabric and brass valves. It has an integrated self-inflating headrest that inflates together with the rest of the pad. The pad weighs 7 lb (3.18 kg) and it is 3 inches (7.6 cm) thick. Note that it is very affordable.
21. Lightspeed Outdoors XL Self-Inflating Sleeping Pad
The official R-value of this pad is 9.66 and this is why it is in such a good position here in the list. In view of this, you have here a pad for all seasons. It is self-inflating and with an integrated headrest.
This is a very popular camping pad, easy to use, and also very affordable. A carry bag is included. The pad is quite heavy and this is why it is in this list of camping pads, it weighs 6 lb (2.72 kg). The dimensions are 77 x 30 inches (196 x 76 cm).
22. Therm-a-Rest DreamTime Mattress
This is a pad with some unique features. So this DreamTime pad is a three-component system which includes the following elements:
- A memory foam layer.
- A self-inflating core pad.
- On the outside, you have a removable and machine-washable microfiber cover.
- Connect Two system. This means you can use it in pair with yet another pad. This is done with the help of the side straps which you can see in the picture.
The pad is built in two sizes, and they are both great, Large and Extra Large. Its R-value is 10, so this is in such a position here in the list. The materials are durable, so you have 75D polyester on both sides. The foam is urethane.
23. Therm-a-Rest MondoKing 3D Self-Inflating Foam Camping Air Mattress
This is an insulated sleeping pad suitable for all seasons, and with an impressive R-value 11.4, one of the highest on the market. It is built in two sizes and they both are big.
The fabric is a very soft and pleasant 75D reverse diamond polyester on the top and the same durability polyester is on the bottom. The inside foam is urethane, and you might want to know that the pad is built in the USA. Much more is available in my separate review, please follow the link below.
So what would be your best self-inflating camping pad? How to choose?
Here are a few tips you might bear in mind when you decide for such a sleeping pad:
As you have seen, the differences are big. This is important if you ever plan to carry it attached to the pack. But if you plan to use the pad for car camping, then simply ignore the weight and check its other parameters. Heavier usually means more insulation, thicker and larger construction, so a bigger weight is not necessarily a bad thing here.
The packed size:
These pads have foam insulation and they must be bulkier than most of the inflatable pads. For car camping, this is not such a big deal in any case, but it may be if you are on a motorbike tour or on a hiking adventure.
This is an important parameter. The higher the value the better, it is as simple as that. Pads with high R-value you can use in any season, they are not heaters so they are suitable even for summer. But you might want to know that there is a new ASTM F3340-18 standard for camping sleeping pads ratings introduced from January 2020. Read more about this here.
This is yet another important parameter. If you are a side sleeper you will go for a thicker pad.
There are big differences here as well. This is due to different features and materials of course. But some of the pads are indeed surprisingly affordable.
The bag shown below is my choice for several reasons. It is very affordable, you can use it as single or double, it is reliable, and I trust the brand behind it.
So this was my list with best self-inflating camping mattresses, and as you realize those are all items from top brands. The list will be updated whenever I find a pad worth adding here. This is why you might want to bookmark this text and check occasionally. Please share it with others.
Thank you for reading. Please use the comment box below in the case of questions or comments. I wish you a pleasant camping wherever you are in the world.