There’s nothing worse than spending a day at the beach without a good beach blanket. Sand inevitably works its way into your clothing, while your back start aching, and the hot sand starts to feel like lava beneath you!
The invention of sand free beach blankets changes all that. These blankets and mats utilize modern weaving techniques that allow sand and dirt to fall through the mesh – but not work its way back up.
Instead of suffering through the unfortunate scenario above, you’ll be able to lie down comfortably without annoying sand ruining your outing. I’ll break down some of the best sand free beach blankets on the market, so you can spend the day without constantly clearing sand from your blanket.
Quick Answer: 5 Best Sand Free Beach Blankets
Why do you need a sand free beach blanket?
Beyond just a comfortable place to park your rear end, sand free beach towels have a number of different features that make them well worth having around.
Many feature quick-dry materials that resist water absorption, so you can hop out of the water and sit down without soaking your rear end. The same weave pattern that allows sand and dirt to fall through the blanket also makes them relatively wind proof.
Many also feature rugged ripstop fabric that makes them good for camping, sporting events, and general outdoor use. Many campers use them as makeshift mudrooms/porches for their tents – so no debris can work its way inside the shelter.
Top 5 Sand Free Beach Blankets
CGear were the originators of the sand-free beach blanket, and despite many knock-offs, still manufacture the highest quality sand free blankets around. Originally developed for military use, the CGear’s patented two-layer sand free system allows sand, dirt, and dust to pass through the fabric – but not come back up.
The Sandlite utilizes a softer, lighter material that rolls up to a compact size – making it perfect for the beach, picnics, and camping. The material is also water-resistant, so spilled drinks will bead on the surface and easily wipe clean. It’s also wind-resistant, as the weaved mesh will allow air to pass through without causing it to fly up.
Three different sizes are available (small, medium, and large), so you can easily find the right sized blanket for your needs. A wide variety of colors and patterns are also available.
If you’re looking for a rock-solid beach mat that can withstand being baked in the sun, doused in saltwater, rolled up, and stepped on while still providing a comfortable place to park your behind!
- Dimensions: Small 3.2’ x 6.6’, Medium 5.1’ x 6.1’, Large 6.6’ x 6.6’
- Sand free weaved mesh filters sand, dirt, and dust.
- Machine washable.
- Softer, lighter material rolls up into compact carry size.
CGear’s original sand-free camping mat is made for enjoying a day of fun in the sun. It’s made from a heavier duty fabric than the Sandlite reviewed above, which makes it great for beach use, windy days, and camping. The original mat ensures ultra-durability, quick drying time, water and UV resistance.
Heavy-duty D rings allow you to stake the mat down when you want a more permanent solution. This works well for camping, backpacking, RVing, and other outdoor events. Four different sized mats are available – so you can find the ideal one for your needs.
Like the Sandlite reviewed above, the mesh design will shrug off the wind rather than blowing away, so there’s no need to stake it down for typical usage.
If you’re looking for a heavy-duty sand free ground pad for serious outdoor use, this is the one for you. Keep in mind it’s made from a more heavy-duty fabric than the Sandlite, so it’ll take up more space when folded up.
- Dimensions: Small 6’ x 6.6’, Medium 8’ x 8’, Large 10’ x 10’, X-Large 12’ x 12’
- Heavy-duty double layer sand free mesh weave.
- Fast-drying and resistant to water, UV, and mold.
- D-rings for staking down.
If you’re looking for a well-constructed sand-free beach blanket without spending an arm and a leg, this 100% nylon extra-large beach blanket fits the bill nicely. It features a similar design to other sand-free blankets, allowing sand to pass through it when you give it a little shake. It’s also water resistant, and will wick away moisture rather than absorbing it.
It’s large enough to seat 7 adults comfortably, and comes with metal stakes as well as corner sand pouches for securing it to the ground. An integrated compression stuff sack allows you to stuff the entire blanket into an incredibly compact 6” x 7” carry bag – so you can throw it in your beach bag and forget it!
The durable and lightweight single-layer fabric weighs just one pound, but don’t let that fool you into thinking it’s cheap. It won’t rip or tear, and is incredibly tough considering its featherlight construction.
- Dimensions: 10’ x 9’
- Large enough to seat 7 adults comfortably.
- Water-resistant and sand-proof.
- Two anchoring options included: metal stakes and corner sand pockets.
- Integrated compression stuff sack for quick and easy storage.
Sand Free Towel
If you’re looking for a sand free beach towel that will also work as a beach blanket, CGear’s got just the thing for you. It features the same sand-free dual-layer weave as their other acclaimed products, but in a soft, light, and absorbent beach towel.
The 100% finely spun polyester fabric is ultra-soft to the touch, so you won’t need to compromise on comfort. The multi-layer quick-dry construction ensures it dries much faster than traditional cotton towels, so you won’t have to deal with musty, wet towels at the end of the day.
Measuring a generous 63” x 31”, its large enough for two adults to sit on comfortably. When you want to take off, it rolls or folds up to an ultra-compact size, so you can stuff it into your bag with plenty of room to spare.
If you’re sick of tracking sand from the beach into your home or car, this is the beach towel for you. It’s double function as a sand-proof beach blanket makes it one of the best beach products around.
- Dimensions: 63” x 31”
- 100% finely spun multi-layer polyester fabric is ultra-soft.
- Multi-layer quick-dry construction.
- Sand-free weave ensures sand and dirt falls through but doesn’t come back up.
This large beach blanket makes a great choice when you want a decent sized blanket that packs up into an ultra-light, compact carry case. Made from 100% parachute nylon it’s both incredibly light and durable. This material will dry quickly, and ensures sand and mud won’t stick to your blanket.
Anchoring the blanket can be done with the four built-in sand anchor pockets, or if there’s no sand available, you can use any small weighted items. A zippered front valuables pocket offers you enough space to stash keys, sunglasses, smartphones, and other important items.
When you’re ready to take off, the ultra-light blanket easily stuffs into a 5” x 8” stuff sack, so you can fit it inside a beach bag, wagon, or pants pocket.
- Dimensions: 7’ x 9’
- Made from lightweight and durable 100% parachute nylon.
- Quick-dry material ensures sand and mud won’t stick to your blanket.
- Four built-in sand pocket anchors.
- Zippered front pocket for valuables.
How to pick the right sand free beach blanket?
You might think sand free beach blankets are all the same, but there are a few key features to keep in mind when picking one out. Let’s break them down one by one.
Anytime you’re using gear around strong sunlight, sand, and saltwater, you’ll want to be sure you’re getting something that can withstand these harsh conditions. Sand free beach blankets are mare from two main materials, each with its relative strengths and weaknesses.
Multi-layer webbed mesh is tough and durable, and is more than capable of withstanding the toughest saltwater conditions. This type has small holes that allows sand to automatically pass through the mesh netting, so you won’t need to do anything to clear sand particles. The mesh netting also allows wind to pass through the blanket without effect – so they don’t need to be anchored down.
Nylon beach towels are also fairly tough and durable. They’re ultra-light, and require stakes or sand pouches to anchor them in place. The fabric is easy to clear if sand gets on it – just grip the fabric and flick the sand away. Nylon is also significantly cheaper than webbed mesh, and will fold down to a more compact package for stowage.
When you’re already hauling around beach chairs, umbrellas, and coolers filled with ice cold beverages, cutting down on excess weight and bulk is a smart move. Compared with traditional beach blankets that can get quite heavy when they inevitably absorb water, sand free blankets are much lighter.
Many sand free beach blankets come with built in carry handles or stuff bags, allowing you to roll them up and stash them in a compact spot.
Beach blankets come in a wide variety of different sizes, so it’s not difficult to find the ideal size for you. Manufacturer’s will often give a maximum number of people that will fit on a given blanket. I’d generally take these numbers with a grain of salt, as people generally like to splay out and take up a good amount of space at the beach.
If you’re debating what size beach blanket to go for, I’d recommend sizing up. A larger blanket can still work well for one or two people, but you won’t be able to fit may people on a smaller blanket.
Waterproofing – or water resistance – is another key factor for any and all beach gear. If you’re frequently hopping in and out of the water, your towel will easily get soaked unless it has some form of water resistance.
Both webbed mesh any nylon blankets offer a good level of water resistance, and will wick away or bead moisture rather than absorbing it.
I’ve loved being in the outdoors for as long as I can remember. I grew up fishing, canoeing, and camping throughout the Okanagan Valley in British Columbia. It’s what lead me to start this site and share my passions for fishing, diving, kayaking and more. Nowadays you can find me writing about my passions or (preferably!) preparing for my next outdoor adventure.