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Best soft sided cooler 2018 – [Buyer’s Guide]Last Updated November 1, 2022
Best soft sided cooler of 2018
Before you spend your money on soft sided cooler, start by familiarizing yourself with the various types. Below you can find 3 reviews of the best soft sided cooler to buy in 2018, which I have picked after the deep market research.
Whether you’re looking to upgrade your comfort, style, or accessibility, we have picks to fit a variety of needs and budgets. So, what exactly would anyone want to know about soft sided cooler? I know most of us don’t really care much about the history and the origin, all we want to know is which of them is the best. Of course, I will spare you the history and go straight on to the best soft sided cooler.
Test Results and Ratings
Why did this soft sided cooler win the first place?
I am very happy with the purchase. It is definitely worth its money. The product is top-notch! The material is stylish, but it smells for the first couple of days. I really enjoy the design. It is compact, comfortable and reliable. And it looks amazing! I don’t know anything about other models from this brand, but I am fully satisfied with this product.
№2 – 2Pcs Bicycle Mirror
Why did this soft sided cooler come in second place?
I really liked it. It is amazing in every aspect. It did even exceed my expectations for a bit, considering the affordable price. The material is pretty strong and easy to wash if needed. The design quality is top notch and the color is nice. I recommend you to consider buying this model, it definitely worth its money.
Why did this soft sided cooler take third place?
It doesn’t squeaks nor bents. Looks great in my apartment. I hope that the good reputation of the manufacturer will guarantee a long-term work. I liked the design. We’ve been using it for 2 months and it still looks like brand new. This price is appropriate since the product is very well built.
soft sided cooler Buyer’s Guide
How we picked
Between the new models that had appeared in the past year, fresh updates to old designs, and the availability issues that we’d seen on our first choice, we felt it’d be best to start from scratch with this 201update. We started by looking at reviews and testing from reputable sources. Of the reviews I found, many did not include testing across multiple models, and there were no reviews that focused specifically on soft coolers. Good Housekeeping wrote up a collection of all types of coolers, though I didn’t consider its list expansive enough to carry much authoritative weight. Cook’s Illustrated did a roundup of both hard and soft coolers (subscription required), but the list of test models was very short. Slate as well had a review from eight years ago, which was too out of date to be very useful.
The simple fact is that there isn’t a whole lot of consumer research geared specifically to soft coolers. So I went to boating forums, The Hull Truth, The Malibu Crew, and Powerboat Nation. I looked at online reviews, and double-checked our research from last year, to find all the coolers that people loved the most. The goal: I wanted to hold and use as many soft coolers as I possibly could to truly understand the category and the features that make a cooler stand out.
No two coolers are created equally. While there are likely a slew of convenient features available for each and every one of the below listed options, the functionality and design of some of them are going to appeal more to your tastes than others.
So this should most certainly play a significant role in which of these you end up choosing.
Going green was never quite this easy. The material used for this cooler doesn’t have CFCs or HCFCs, which are common environmental pollutants.
Don’t have a spot for your drink? Now you do with the molded cup holders on the lid.
Stainless Steel Hardware
The inclusion of stainless steel further ensures that this product is going to stand the test of time without succumbing to the elements that claim the lives of so many other coolers.
Sturdy latches provide a tight seal for the entire cooler, keeping the cold inside where it belongs.
A few replacement parts does not hurt, just in case of a break at an inconvenient time.
Why You Need A New Cooler
If you buy a modern, industry-standard, hard-sided cooler, you will be doing yourself a major favor. Due to recent innovations in cooling and retention technologies, most high-grade coolers now keep ice for up to 5-days. This makes them an amazing and ideal piece of equipment for camping, road trips, and all sorts of outdoor fun.
Regardless of how fond you are about your current cooler, the level of technological perfection that has been achieved by the modern cooler is not something that should be missed out on by anybody who enjoys the outdoors.
Although the initial investment isn’t cheap, that does not mean that it isn’t very valuable. The vastly improved level of ice retention, general durability, and great warranties that accompany these coolers add extreme value to owning one of these coolers. If you plan on camping, most of these coolers are totally bear-proof, which means that they cannot access your food or detract from the potential health from you and your friends and family in this way.
Eve is an online only brand that has developed one mattress to fit all, with an ethos of keeping things simple, beautiful and affordable for every budget.
The Eve mattress comprises of three stacked layers: a high density base layer, a breathable cooling layer and a new generation memory foam layer to top it off. What’s different from the standard pure base foam is that Eve use an ultra resilient Reflex base foam that reacts to your movements, making the whole mattress reactive to your needs.
The memory layer is unlike other leading memory-foam mattresses where you get that sinking feeling, quite literally. The high-point elasticity has been developed to provide a responsive, soft cushioning without cocooning the contours of the body.
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Simba Hybrid Mattress
The Simba Hybrid is one of the new breed of mattresses that pops out of a handy-sized box. It’s the way the world of mattress shopping is going, as it’s convenient and super easy – order it today, get it tomorrow and trial it for 100 nights! Once unleashed from its box, the mattress takes 3-hours to fully take shape, ready for a night’s sleep.
The patented springs make these mattresses unique, moving horizontally and vertically to fit the shape of your body and give you the best sleep. The Simbatex layer provides cool, gentle support, whilst the Visco memory foam moulds expertly to your body shape. It’s like a mattress that’s tailor-made for you.
Hovag Pocket Sprung Mattress
This is Ikea’s best-selling mattress by a mile! There’s no denying its unbelievable value, ideal for those on a budget. Take note first-time buyers and renters! One of the Ideal Home team was so impressed after testing it that they went and bought it. They describe it as the perfect balance between firm support and comfort.
You get support in all the right places thanks to the individually wrapped pocket springs that work independently and closely to follow the contours of your body. It’s designed to be slept on one side only, therefore it doesn’t require turning – although it’s fairly light. This is the best cheap mattress you can get.
Tempur Cloud 2Medium Mattress
The original masters of memory foam, the Tempur design model provides a top comfort layer made of a specially developed ‘extra Soft’ material for a feeling of instant relaxation. This unique fabric was designed to regulate temperature and humidity. Aptly named the cloud, the nature of this mouldable mattress material cocoons your body as it reacts to your body heat, making it ideal for relieving pressure points, such as hips and spine.
Working in perfect harmony with the lower support layers, once you settle your body weight is redistributed reducing pressure while you sleep. In addition to the comfort factor, this mattress also features a removable and washable cover, which is ideal if you are an allergy sufferer.
The Drysdale Pocket Sprung Mattress
This is the best-selling model from UK sleep experts Button & Sprung. Founder Adam Black tells us this is popular due to the unique IQ Spring system and six-layers of all-natural filling – with cotton, that’s strong, breathable and temperature-responsive.
Again, value for money is remarkable on this cooler and you are backed by possibly the biggest name in the cooler business – Coleman. If you plan on purchasing a soft sided cooler to use on occasion, this is perfect.
That being said, some of the flaws which we have listed would indicate that if you’re looking for a more permanent solution, then taking a look at some of the other soft cooler reviews below would be in your best interest.
Negatives aside, if you are happy with this cooler although feel as though it would be too big for you, there is a Coleman 1can soft cooler with hard liner available.
Engel Soft Cooler Bag Backpack
The build quality of this cooler is second-to-none and you need only look at it to know this is a first class product. The features which this cooler bag backpack comes equipped with are simply amazing, so we’ll get right into it.
Our Opinion of the Arctic Soft Cooler
If you’re looking for a cooler which you can use on occasion without going too much out of pocket, you’ve found the perfect solution.
This cooler is equipped with several compartments, SuperFoam, and is simply a bargain. When weighing out the pros and cons, there’s no doubt in my mind that this is a winner.
If we take into account all of the pros and cons of each of the soft sided coolers which we have listed above, all of them are reasonable purchases. There is not a single one of the coolers above which we would say otherwise.
When it comes to the purchase, there are a few things which we would advise doing. First of all, think about what you will be using it for. Will you be using it for the beach? If that’s the case, weigh out the pros and cons, take a look at the soft cooler reviews, and find out which of the coolers work best in a beach setting.
No matter what the situation is, there is a cooler for you. So, if you’re adamant on making a cooler purchase but aren’t sure on how to decide which is the right one for you, take into account everything that we’ve discussed in the article above, consider your limits (spending limit, how much you’d be storing in it, etc.), and make a purchase that you won’t regret.
How we tested
At the very least, a cooler should keep its contents as cold as they were when they went into the box for several hours on a hot day. But could any of these coolers take it one step further and cool down items that were not perfectly chilled to begin with? We loaded up each model with 45-degree sodas (by most people’s standards they weren’t yet cool enough to drink) and ice packs (pound for every quarts of cooler capacity, per the manufacturers’ instructions) and placed them in a stuffy room that we cranked to 9degrees. We cracked open a can from each cooler every hour for four hours and stuck an instant-read thermometer into the liquid. The first good piece of news was that every model—even the cheap foam box—maintained the temperature of the sodas for the full four hours. Even more impressive, two models exceeded our expectations and actually dropped the sodas to a colder temperature.
The most effective feature we came across was a layer of plastic lining on the interior of one of the models, which created an insulating air pocket between the cooler’s interior and the foam. Gases like air make very good insulators because they contain relatively few molecules, hence they conduct heat poorly. That explained why this was the only model to not only keep the sodas cool, but to actually chill them to an optimal 40 degrees. (The other model to drop the sodas’ temperature only brought them down to 4degrees.) What’s more, this impressive cooler had a small hatch sewn into its zip top that allowed us to grab a soda without opening the entire box, thereby keeping the release of cool air to a minimum.
That last point got us thinking about a cooler’s other functions. Besides a beverage chiller, we wanted a container roomy enough to accommodate a weekend’s worth of groceries, but not a bear to move when full or a hog that consumed lots of floor space when not in use.
Storage-wise, two coolers had the large capacities, but it was their flexible fabric walls that gave them, as well as the smaller collapsible model, a real advantage. Not only did these coolers fold down like a duffle bag, but their sides were flexible enough to house multiple bags of groceries.
Meanwhile, one rigid model was about half as roomy as the largest coolers. When it couldn’t accommodate all of the cold-storage goods, we had to perform triage—and only a whole chicken, pound of bacon, and a package of ground beef made the cut.
Most of the soft-sided coolers fared well in the durability test, too. When we tipped them off the tailgate of a station wagon, their zip tops prevented them from bursting open and hurling their contents onto the pavement as one model did, and they didn’t suffer any permanent structural damage. The one soft-sided model failed this test—a peek inside after the tumble revealed a split-open hummus container and a few broken eggs.
The ideal cooler should also clean up odor- and stain-free without a lot of scrubbing. Of the fabric models, only one passed the cleanup tests with flying colors, thanks to its smooth sides and antimicrobial material. When we left fresh cod fillets in each cooler for a weekend and then scrubbed them with hot soapy water, baking soda, and cleaning wipes, the fishy aroma stubbornly clung to the other fabric coolers. Meanwhile, spilled milk dyed green with food coloring mopped up easily from one smooth, hard-sided model, which also features a handy spout for draining liquid.
By the end of testing, we decided that one model was a cooler we’d be happy to take anywhere. Its large fabric-covered frame was lightweight and durable, and its interior plastic lining added an extra layer of insulation. Plus, it rolls on small wheels, pulls along with a telescoping handle, and collapses to the size of a gym bag.
We filled each model with partially chilled sodas and ice packs (pound per 2 quarts cooler capacity, per manufacturer instructions) and placed them in a 95-degree room. We checked the temperature inside one can from each model every hour for four hours, giving the highest marks to the coolers that maintained—or even dropped—the sodas’ starting temperatures.
Design Trifecta 360 Knife Block
Admittedly expensive, this handsome block certainly seemed to live up to its billing as “the last knife block you ever have to buy.” The heaviest model in our testing, this block was ultrastable, and its durable bamboo exterior was a breeze to clean. Well-placed medium-strength magnets made it easy to attach all our knives, and a rotating base gave us quick access to them. One tiny quibble: The blade of our 12-inch slicing knife stuck out a little.
Schmidt Brothers Downtown Block
This roomy block completely sheathed our entire winning knife set using just one of its two sides—and quite securely, thanks to long, medium-strength magnet bars. Heavy, with a grippy base, this block was very stable. An acrylic guard made this model extra-safe but also made it a little trickier to insert knives and to clean; the wood block itself showed some minor cosmetic scratching during use.
Schmidt Brothers Midtown Block
This smaller version of the Downtown Block secured all our knives nicely, though the blade of the slicing knife stuck out a bit. With a base lined with grippy material, this block was very stable. An acrylic guard afforded extra protection against contact with blades but made it a little harder to insert knives and to clean; the wood itself got a little scratched during use.
Polar Bear Coolers is quickly gaining popularity in the high end cooler market. The Polar Bear 2Pack cooler will retain ice for up to 2hours in 100 degree temperatures. This cooler is leak-proof, sweat- proof, and built to be durable and tough. The outer shell of the cooler is constructed of luggage grade 1000 denier Cordura nylon, at it is designed with heavy duty zippers, a padded shoulder strap, and side pockets. The Polar Bear soft cooler also includes a wrap-around handle made of Velcro and a built in bottle opener. It is offered in a variety of attractive colors.
AO Cooler Soft Cooler
The AO Soft Cooler is offered in four different sizes as well as multiple colors and is guaranteed to retain ice for 2hours in temperatures up to 120 degrees. It is also guaranteed to be leak-proof. This cooler includes a removable shoulder strap and meets airline requirements for carry-on luggage. The liner is constructed of high quality vinyl and extra-thick insulation which results in superior ice retention. The smallest cooler AO offers can hold up to cans with ice, and the largest cooler they offer can carry up to 4cans with ice.
Koolatron Soft Electric Cooler
The Koolatron Electric Travel Cooler is conveniently cooled by plugging into your car’s cigarette lighter and is able to cool to 30 degrees below the ambient temperature. You won’t have to worry about restocking the ice or draining melted ice while traveling on the open road. However, you do have the option to use ice or icepacks as the Koolatron electric cooler is insulated and can be used either way. This soft sided travel cooler holds up to 20 cans or two liter bottles, and it’s perfect for cars, offices, and hotel rooms.
It’s either the lids are flimsy.
The latches burst often making it cumbersome to open and close.
The cooler fails at its prime purpose to retain ice for long possible hours.
The Pelican ProGear is the most rugged cooler on the list – Without a doubt, Pelican proves its mettle with this ice chest.
From making phone and computer cases, pelican has also gotten their hands mixed with coolers. The ProGear elite is a piece of genius from a company that has its hands over multiple ventures.
With a rugged exterior, the cooler can resist substantial impacts. Thanks to the premium plastic build, the latches and extended handles wouldn’t fail even after continuous use.
With that said, the ProGear utilizes sturdy latches that are simple to use. The mechanism is superb, just push a button to release the latches, take it back by pushing it down.
Impressively, the ProGear features a high-end plastic extension on the drain which helps minimize splashing and dripping while it drains quickly.
Handles and hinges are not durable.
Fear not, the Orca cooler has been tested and proven to be a heavy-duty rotomolded cooler that can hold anything you throw at it.
The Orca comes in a 58-quart, there’s enough space to put all you need and still fill ice in. The best part is you can also store food in this cooler as it maintains a staggering 40F for six days.
Designed with durable & hard insulating materials, this cooler ice chest can withstand extreme temperatures. Surprisingly, Orca can keep ice and drinks for up to days, meaning you’ll get a week of cold refreshing beverages and cocktails.
While most coolers can have inefficient drain plugs, the orca is designed to drain water thoroughly, enabling your food to remain dry while decreasing the ice melting period.
The handles make use of a semi-rigid rubber handle with nylon webbings. The result is a handle and amazing flex movement enough to distribute weight and carry comfortably. With that out of the way, the lid is stable, while the latches are hard and durable.
On the downside, some users complained of the lid, which can inadvertently snap shut, this shouldn’t be a problem cause you can always keep one hand on the lid when groping for drinks or beverages.
All in all, Orca coolers have a reputation for high insulation, robust exterior, roomy space and overall quality. Rest assured, this cooler is no exception.
Wheels make it easy to roll a Giant Cooler without going through the stress of carrying it, be glad cause the Coleman Xtreme wheeled gives that relief.
Let’s find out
When you set your eyes on this cooler, what comes to mind is the ample interior space and beautiful exterior. As soon as you open the chest, the storage space in it gives you a respite to put all you need for camping trips.
The cooler can retain ice for extended periods thus keeping your drinks cold for – days. It also comes with a two way hinged plastic handle pushing the weight onto your hands. It might get quite uncomfortable when you hold it for a while.
In general, the durability of the cooler is under scrutiny, flimsy plastic handles and hinges are likely to break from sharp impacts. Latches are replaced with a press fit lid you can lift.
First of all thanks for reading my article to the end! I hope you find my reviews listed here useful and that it allows you to make a proper comparison of what is best to fit your needs and budget. Don’t be afraid to try more than one product if your first pick doesn’t do the trick.
Most important, have fun and choose your soft sided cooler wisely! Good luck!
So, TOP3 of soft sided cooler
- №1 — 2 Pack Glass Bike Mirrors 360 Rotation Rear view Mirror for Bicycle Mountain Bike
- №2 — 2Pcs Bicycle Mirror
- №3 — Mirrycle MTB Bar End Mountain Bicycle Mirror