Bean bags are a great way to add extra seating to your home thanks to being low cost, comfortable and lightweight, allowing you to easily move them from one room to another as required.
Children’s bean bags have always been a popular addition to a child’s bedroom thanks to their fun factor and because they don’t take up much space. Kids can choose from a variety of bright colours and enjoy spending hours comfortably gaming, watching TV or reading.
Of course, thye are not just for kids. Adult bean bags come in a variety of sizes and colours to suit your personality and your home and are a great way to watch TV or enjoy a good book by the fireplace. Don’t be surprised if it becomes the best seat in the house and there is a race to sit in it first. But don't worry, there's always the option to get a large bean bag that can be shared!
You’re no longer restricted to just having one inside the house either, as you can now buy a water resistant outdoor bean bag and use it on your patio or terrace all year round. Being made from tougher, water resistant material also means that they can deal with anything that even the most demanding loungers throw at it, including food and drink, which can just be wiped clean with a damp cloth.
Things to consider when buying a bean bag
Just like any product, they're not all created equal and there are some key things that you should consider before deciding on which one to choose.
Firstly, due to the way they are made, a common weakness can be in the seam. The last thing you want to happen is for the seam to split and have the beads spill everywhere! Therefore, not only is the stitching important, but also the type of cotton used. For this reason, all Extreme Lounging bean bags are double stitched with extra strong and durable 5’s cotton, making it tough enough to withstand the heaviest of loungers. An additional feature to reduce the amount of pressure on the seams are the vents, which you can read more about below.
Making up the core of all bean bags, the beads used to fill them determine your level of comfort as they mould around the shape of your body providing the cushioning. The quality of the beads will also affect their compressive strength, insulation qualities and whether they will deteriorate and settle over time, needing to be replaced. They will also impact the overall weight of the bean bag.
All Extreme Lounging bean bags use EPS (Expanded Polystyrene) polystyrene beads, to offer the best level of comfort possible, at the lightest weight and with the assurance that they will not lose their compressive strength no matter what.
EPS is effectively 98% air captured within a 2% cellular matrix. The unique matrix structure of EPS brings the benefits of exceptional compressive strength that does not deteriorate with use or age. Therefore, EPS polystyrene beads will not settle over time and will not need to be replaced.
They also have high insulation qualities meaning all absorbed body heat will keep you warm for as long as you lounge. The added benefit of resistance to water ingress means that any spills will not affect the integrity of the bean bag. EPS is non-toxic, chemically inert, non-irritant and rot-proof. Fungi and bacteria cannot grow on EPS and it is insoluble and non-hygroscopic.
EPS has a long and proven track record and has been tested to some of the world’s most demanding performance standards.
The filling method
The method of filling a bean bag also affects the level of comfort. Some have other bags within them, which contain the beads. This means that the beads are not allowed to flow freely to take the shape of your body and this method is not as effective as has having direct-filled, which results in free-flowing beads.
When you sit in a bean bag the beads move around to take your shape and this in turn results in air being forced out of it. This can create pressure on the seams and can weaken them after a while. Therefore, including vents helps to release air rapidly, without putting pressure on the seams. This quick release has the added benefit of allowing the beads to more quickly mould around your body, increasing your level of comfort.
Will the fabric used to make the bean withstand the amount of use and abuse the bean bag is likely receive? Look for fabric that is not only hardwearing but is also breathable and splashproof.
Outdoor bean bags obviously need to be able to withstand the elements, therefore the material needs to be both water and UV resistant, such as 100% polyester.
The base of a bean bag chair is constantly being subjected to movement and friction with different types of floor surfaces so if it is not made of hard wearing material, it can easily wear out. You should look for the base to be made out of a strong farbric such as polyester so it will resist this kind of wear and will give you many years of comfortable seating.
Often overlooked, the zip is an important feature to consider. Firstly, if a zip exists it allows you to refill the bean bag if required or add additional beads should you feel you need to do so. You also have the option to remove the beads for easy transportation of the bean bag.
An exposed zip however, can cause damage to flooring. Therefore, it is important to confirm that the zip is designed to be covered, avoiding any such issues. Often, a two zip system is used to ensure no beads will escape.
Finally, at some stage a bean bag will likely need some TLC to keep it looking at its best. Therefore, it is a good idea to take this into consideration when making your choice, especially if children will be using it. Look for ones where materials used to make them can be wiped clean with a damp cloth.