Just as there are many ways to relax, there are many various hammock fabric types, styles, materials, and sizes to choose from.
If you’re in the market for a brand-new hammock to enjoy this season, you first need to think about how you want to relax in your hammock. The way you want to use your hammock will determine what you should consider buying.
Because there are so many options to choose from, we’ve created a hammock buying guide to help you decide which hammock is best for you. This guide will cover the pros and cons of each type of material, so you can relax your way.
Rope hammocks are made of cotton or polyester ropes and have spreader bars on each end. These traditional hammocks have a classic nautical, tropical look.
Cotton is the most traditional material for building hammocks, either in rope or fabric. This soft material makes hammock-lounging perfect for anyone, anywhere.
Quilted hammocks are made of two layers of fabric with filling, such as polyester material or olefin fibers, for comfortable cushioning. These come in a variety of colours and patterns and are often reversible, so you can switch up the look of your hammock.
Also known as poolside hammocks, these pool-party-friendly hammocks are made with a durable fabric that dries quickly and won’t fade in the sunlight.
Quick-dry hammocks are easy to clean with warm water and liquid soap. Avoid using bleach as it can damage your hammock.
Most nylon hammocks are used for camping and hiking due to their convenient features.
Made from cotton, these authentic, long-lasting hammocks are tightly-woven to offer maximum comfort and relaxation. You won’t be disappointed with this hammock style.
Mayan hammocks are made of thin cotton or nylon woven string for both flexibility and support. These hammocks do not have spreader bars.
Since individual strings can be easily broken, you must take care when wearing anything that will snag and break the strings. This includes zippers, buttons, buckles, belt loops, jewellery and anything else that could cause damage to the material.
If you pull a thread, ease it into the weave and shake the hammock to even it out. If you break a thread, tie the two ends together. If multiple strings are broken, close the hole with a looping stitch made of string.
It’s also important to avoid tangling the suspension strings. When moving a Mayan hammock, always hold both end loops together with one hand to prevent tangles.
When storing these hammocks, hang both end loops on a single hook or nail in dry, safe place, such as a closet.
Avoid leaving your hammock outside at all times. The sun’s UV rays will fade the material, so aim to hang both cotton and nylon hammocks in the shade.
Cotton strings will get damaged and develop mildew if left to soak in the rain. If your cotton hammock does get soaked, let it dry out well using a stick to keep it open.
To wash Mayan hammocks, use pieces of cord to tie each arm of the hammock at equal intervals. This will prevent tangling the strings.
Wash by hand in cool water with mild detergent. Dry quickly after washing by hanging the hammock and placing a stick or broom crosswise in the hammock to keep it open.
*Do not fold and store hammocks when wet and avoid storing them in damp places.
Brazilian hammocks are made of thick, colourful, woven cotton fabric gathered at each end with crocheted lace. Brazilian hammocks also do not have spreader bars. These warm hammocks are perfect for lounging outside on a cool summer night.
Nicaraguan hammocks are made from cotton or nylon woven string. They’re thick like Mayan hammocks, except they are more tightly-woven.
While many hammocks are mildew-resistant, you should clean your hammock regularly to prevent stains, smells, bug infestations, and mildew growth.
To keep your hammock in good condition for longer, refer to your hammock’s cleaning instructions for the best care tips.
Many hammocks are machine washable. Just make sure to clarify this with the care instructions before sticking it in the washer.
Take out any removable spreader bars, shake the hammock, and tie up the end strings. Then, roll up the hammock and place it inside a pillowcase. Tie the pillowcase with a string or a clothespin.
Wash in cold water on the gentle (delicates) cycle using a mild detergent.
*Do not use bleach.
Hang outside to air dry. For hammocks without spreader bars, use a stick or broom to hold the hammock open.
Follow the same steps as above to place your hammock in a pillowcase before washing.
Fill up a tub with cool water and mild soap or detergent.
Place the hammock in the water, scrubbing, swishing, and squeezing to pass water through.
Empty the tub, refill, and continue hand washing, following these steps until the refilled tub water remains clear. Empty the tub and rinse the hammock.
*Hang to air dry.
If you can’t remove the spreader bars, lay the hammock spread out on a clean ground surface then clean the hammock with a hose.
Use the highest amount of water pressure to effectively clean every part of the hammock. Flip, and repeat.
Scrub with a cloth or a sponge and mild detergent or soap. Scrub both sides, and focus on problem areas (stains, mildew, etc.).
Rinse the hammock with a hose until there is no soap left, and hang to air dry.
Once your hammock is clean and completely dry, you can store it in a weather-tight tote or a breathable storage bag somewhere dry indoors.
A lot of care and consideration goes into buying, using, and maintaining a hammock. Use this hammock buying guide to help you decide what hammock fabric type and style are best suited to the way you want to relax!