GearBest.com reached out to me to do some consulting on their hammock line. They actually have some amazing prices for their hammocks, which would make great entry-level jungle hammocks or modular recreational hammocks. I asked to take a look at their cotton hammocks, as that is one that I haven’t reviewed before on this site.
- Seller: GearBest.com, made in China
- MSRP: US$40 (base price)
- Bed Dimensions: 208 x 80 cm
- Full Length (with clew): 117 in (297 cm)
- Weight: 24 oz (678 g)
- Capacity: Load limit is not listed!
- Comes with two suspension ropes and a cotton stuff sack
The cotton hammock produced by GearBest.com is an inexpensive imitation of the more traditional, hand-woven variety from Brazil. What you’re getting here is a similar but not equal experience. The hammock from GearBest.com uses comfortable cotton fabric and is made from a single fabric sheet. The end channels are notched so that the nettles can be looped to each other. The clew is tied using traditional methods.
One thing that is currently difficult to navigate on the GearBest.com website is the product naming conventions and descriptions. From what I can tell, they have five different sizes of their cotton hammocks:
- Youth (200 x 80 cm)—this is what I was given to review
- Single (280 x 80 cm)
- Double (270 x 150 cm)
- Triple (285 x 160 cm)
- Jungle (200 x 150 cm) (includes a zippered bug net!)
Note: Their website doesn’t use these naming conventions, but it is what I’m using to best describe what I’ve researched on their site.
Recommendations and Review
Suspension & Anchor System
The supplied ropes are really only useful in places where you already have a built-in anchor. For in-home or backyard use, the rope works fine, especially if you know the Becket Hitch knot and have an eye bolt installed. This is the common way to tie off a hammock in South American and works amazingly well. To use this hammock out camping, you’d really need to invest in another webbing anchor and suspension system.
The net-less design categorizes this hammock as fairly modular, as you can add other accessories ad nauseam. The hammock I reviewed is really too small for most adults for laying in, but can be used as a chair or lounger.
The small hammock I tested is really best for youth and children. I usually like small hammocks, such as my US Navy Hammock. When pitched correctly, some smaller hammocks can be very comfortable, but the small cotton hammock I reviewed was much too narrow, which made it more precarious to lay in. I couldn’t really lay diagonally without jeopardizing my center of gravity. In addition, my shoulders barely fit across the hammock. My kids, on the other hand, have loved the hammock and have been asking if they can get one of their own.
These cotton hammocks are also a good option for folks who want to try a Brazilian-style hammock without investing too much. I recommend getting the larger hammocks.
The colors are not guaranteed, at least the specific patterns. You can buy a “red” or “blue” hammock, but due to the construction methods, the patterns will be variable in that hue. The fabric feels very comfortable an reminds me of higher-quality Brazilian hammocks, up to a point.
Construction and Craftsmanship
The construction was good. No loose strings or variation in build quality. It doesn’t have the high craftsmanship of a hand-made Brazilian, but it didn’t feel too cheap or low-quality.
The cotton fabric is very comfortable. It has a good stretch that is unmatched in a synthetic fabric. The true Brazilian hammocks are some of the most comfortable hammocks in how they create pockets for your feet and head, reducing leg strain common in synthetic hammocks. While I wasn’t able to really lay well in the small hammock I was sent, the fabric held well and I ended up buying a larger hammock for myself.
Price and Value
Probably the best thing going for this hammock, and the other hammocks on this site, is the price. It appears that these hammocks are coming straight from a factory, so the prices are remarkably reasonable. While I’ve been testing this hammock, the website has been promoting most of its products at a discount, so you could pick up a hammock for as little as US$16 with free shipping.
Disclosure of material connection: The author (Derek Hansen) was provided with a free sample from the manufacturer for testing and evaluation purposes. The comments in this post (written & spoken) are of my own opinion, which I formed after personally handling the gear. I was under no obligation to publish a review of this item.