Outdoor Beds For The Ultimate Lounging Experience

Soaking up a little sun is one of the great joys of summer; basking in the glow, enjoying the fresh air, and just kicking up your feet poolside to enjoy a summer day. Pool loungers are a dime a dozen, and they’ll certainly get the job done; but they aren’t always the most comfortable, and they certainly aren’t the most luxurious. If you really love lounging out in the sun, but want a slightly more decadent experience? It’s time to ditch the plastic poolside loungers and look into the benefits of outdoor beds.

Bed Style Outdoor Beds

So what is an outdoor bed, and why are they so great? The simple, obvious answer is, they’re beds you can put outside, but maybe not beds in the sense you’d normally think of. Outdoor beds aren’t necessarily rectangular (though they can be); rather than having conventional mattresses, they have large cushions, and are either piled high with pillows or come with built in adjustable backs. Most outdoor beds are really more like big, pillowy nests that are big enough to stretch out and get comfortable in. Depending on the size and shape, you can either lay out fully or lounge like you would on a reclining sofa; they’re often big enough for multiple people. Unlike traditional loungers, outdoor beds are very plush and soft, and allow you to curl up comfortably with a book, a drink, or a friend while you’re enjoying your summer sun.

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Lounge Style Outdoor Beds

Convene Double Outdoor Patio Chaise in Espresso and White EEI-2177-EXP-WHI from Modway Furniture
Convene Double Outdoor Patio Chaise in Espresso and White EEI-2177-EXP-WHI from Modway Furniture

Some outdoor beds are a bit less like beds and a bit more like traditional loungers. That is to say, you can adjust the backs and lay on them either completely flat or tilted into a sitting position. But unlike traditional loungers, they can come in a variety of shapes, with multiple movable parts, to accommodate two people. They’re also much more comfortable, with plush cushions. built in storage below, and cup holders between the two long seats. In some cases, both ends of this type of outdoor bed will be adjustable, making it possible to lay on comfortably in either direction without moving it, or even for two people to lay facing each other with their own backrests.

Outdoor Canopy Beds

Not all outdoor beds are for sleeping in. If you plan on catching some Z’s while you’re lounging outside, look for one with some kind of sun protection. One of the simplest ways to add a little shade to your lounger is with a canopy. These look a little like the convertible top on a car and function in a similar way; you can fold them flat against the backrest, or pull them over the top of the bed for added shade. The size and shape of these canopies varies a little from one outdoor bed to another; most are better for shading your face and upper body than your legs, but they do help block sunlight on a bright day.

Outdoor Beds With Umbrellas

Alternatively, some outdoor beds have built in umbrellas either attached to one end or sometimes stuck right in the middle. This gives better overall shade coverage, particularly when you position the umbrella directly over the bed. Incidentally, it also gives the outdoor bed a fantastic tropical look and feel. Like most patio umbrellas, you can adjust, tilt, close, or even remove these umbrellas depending on your needs. This feature is really a must-have if you plan to actually sleep in your outdoor bed; a simple canopy won’t protect your entire body from the sun, but a well positioned umbrella can. You should, of course, still use caution and your best judgement! But an umbrella is the best kind of sun protection you’ll find on an outdoor bed.

Outdoor Lounge Sets

Love the idea of having an outdoor bed, but don’t want to sacrifice space you need for other outdoor furniture? Look for an outdoor bed that comes in multiple parts. These sectional sets typically consist of a large, sofa-like piece with cushy seats and a pillowy backrest paired with one or more smaller ottomans shaped to fit snugly up against the sofa. When pushed together, all these pieces form a full sized outdoor bed. But the real advantage of this design? You can also pull these pieces apart, and use the ottomans as seating or side tables for a less-cozy crowd. This allows you to have the best of both worlds: a decadent outdoor bed when you want to lounge by the pool, and fully functional, fairly conventional outdoor seating sets for your guests.

If you plan to spend a lot of time outdoors this summer, why not add a little comfort to your sunbathing? Cushy, comfortable outdoor beds are perfect for soaking up the sun, enjoying some fresh air, and getting a little much-needed R&R.