There is one thing I like more than quirky outdoor-inspired products: quirky outdoor-inspired products that actually work. Another thing I really appreciate is when a new and innovative product replaces multiple pieces of gear – reducing the size and weight of my hiking backpack will forever be my ultimate incentive. For these reasons, I was very much looking forward to trying Voited's premium wearable sleeping bag that promises to combine the best aspects of an everyday sleeping bag and a puffy coat – and does it all while being sustainable.
The Voited wearable sleeping bag (WSB) is fully convertible, meaning you can wear it as a down jacket around the campgrounds while using the retractable feet box to convert it to a sleeping bag without leaving the warmth of your coat. Better still, it has PrimaLoft RISE compression-resistant, vegan insulation with 50D Ripstop recycled Repreve polyester outer shell with 13.000mm water repellency and 5000mm breathability coating.
And indeed, the Voited WSB feels warm and protective thanks to the oversized design and the ample amount of insulation. I also love the sustainability effort, from the fluorine-free water-repellent finish and 100% recycled Repreve(R) polyester outer shell to the PrimaLoft recycled high loft binder fibres and 100% recycled polyester yarn lining. If you like feeling cosy around the campfire without feeling guilty about your clothing choices, this is the product you want to go for.
Things get a bit less rosy when you start moving. Despite the arms, the oversized nature of the Voited WSB makes you feel like you're walking around in a sleeping bag, not a down jacket. It's not super light either, which wouldn't be an issue, but the lack of a full-length zipper restricts your gait, making the Voited WSB impractical to use for anything else but campsite shuffling.
Also, converting the coat into a sleeping bag feels almost impossible without getting out of the jacket first for two reasons. First, the non-full-length zipper prevents you from accessing the zipper at the back, especially in the dark. Secondly, the buttons holding the bottom half of the sleeping bag are higher up in the pocket at the back – completely understandably – and unless you're a contortionist, you'll have a bad time reaching up that pocket without dislocating your shoulder.
These issues aside, I loved the fact that I could walk around in a sleeping bag. The sensation of moving in the Voited WSB is similar to wearing a Dryrobe – it's puffy, cosy, and warm. Of course, you can't use it to dry yourself after you had a splash, but still. I appreciate the waterproof level of the Voited bag (it's pretty good, actually; better than some of the best waterproof jackets featuring 'only' a DWR layer), but I can't imagine testing how much precipitation the jacket can withstand and risking sleeping in a wet sleeping bag.
Is the Voited WSB a flawed concept? Not at all. It's an innovative product and offers a solution to a question that bothers many campers; why can't I use my sleeping bag to move around in camp when it's cold?
I wish it were even more versatile so I could use the Voited WSB for more than just camp life, although I appreciate there are some technical limitations that need overcoming (a full-length zip at the front would prevent the brand from placing a zip at the bottom, ultimately compromising heat retention when the WSB is used a sleeping bag).
Will I stop using the Voited WSB after testing? I don't think so. It's fun to have it on – makes me feel like I'm wearing a down dress – and triggers conversations with people who haven't seen something like this before, which is something you want when you sit around a campfire, sipping a hot drink and sharing stories.
The Voited Premium Wearable Sleeping Bag is available to buy now directly from Voited for a recommended retail price of £199 (~ $247/AU$364).