14 February 2017

best filling for bean bag chairs

Bean bags have become a popular seating option for many households, providing a comfortable and versatile alternative to traditional chairs and sofas. The appeal of bean bags lies in their ability to conform to the body's shape, offering a relaxed and cozy seating experience. However, one crucial aspect that often goes unnoticed is the filling inside these bean bags. The choice of filling material can greatly impact the bean bag's overall comfort, durability, and environmental impact. In this article, we will explore the different types of bean bag fillings available in the market, the factors to consider when choosing the best filling, and the environmental implications of these choices. By the end, you will have a comprehensive understanding of the best thing to fill bean bags with. So, let's dive in and discover the world of bean bag fillings!

Different types of bean bag fillings

When it comes to filling bean bags, there are several options. Each type of filling has unique qualities and characteristics, so it's important to consider your preferences and needs before deciding. Here are three popular types of bean bag fillings:

A. Polystyrene beads

Polystyrene beads, or EPS (expanded polystyrene) beads, are one of the most common fillings for bean bags. These tiny beads are lightweight and provide excellent comfort and support. They easily conform to your body shape, making them ideal for relaxing and lounging. Polystyrene beads also have good insulation properties, helping to keep you warm in colder months.

One advantage of polystyrene beads is their cost-effectiveness. They are relatively inexpensive compared to other fillings, making them a popular choice for many affordable bean bag chairs. However, it's important to note that these beads may compress and lose their original shape over time, requiring periodic refilling to maintain optimal comfort.

Expanded polypropylene (EPP) is another thermoplastic polymer used to fill bean bags, but it is more popular in Asia than in the U.S. and Europe. EPP beads have several benefits over EPS beads and other fillers. EPP foam is very strong and durable yet incredibly resilient. ChatGPT

When crushed or bent out of shape, the material returns to its original form and size, allowing the beads to compress without losing their airy, cushioning qualities. EPP beads also have several other benefits. They retain their volume as quickly as EPS beads do. And they do not have as strong of an odour. The primary problem with EPP beads is that they are very susceptible to fire and burning. EPP also degrades when exposed to oxygen. EPP is popular in many other applications, including plastic furniture and lids with living hinges.

B. Shredded memory foam

Shredded memory foam is another popular option for bean bag fillings. Memory foam provides exceptional comfort and support by contouring your body's shape and relieving pressure points. The shredded form allows for better air circulation and prevents the foam from clumping together, ensuring consistent comfort over time.

One of the main advantages of shredded memory foam is its durability. Unlike polystyrene beads, memory foam retains its shape and resilience for longer. The added resilience means you won't have to refill the bean bag as frequently, saving you time and effort in the long run. However, it's worth noting that shredded memory foam can be more expensive compared to other fillings.

C. Microfiber or polyester fiberfill

Microfiber or polyester fiberfill is a versatile and eco-friendly option for bean bag fillings. Manufacturers make this filling from soft, lightweight, and hypoallergenic synthetic fibres. Microfiber or polyester fiberfill provides a plush and comfortable feel, making it suitable for lounging and relaxation.

One of the key advantages of microfiber or polyester fiberfill is its affordability. It is generally more budget-friendly compared to polystyrene beads or shredded memory foam. Additionally, this filling is easy to clean and maintain, as it can be machine-washed or spot-cleaned.

However, it's important to consider that microfiber or polyester fiberfill may compress and flatten over time, reducing the overall support and comfort of the bean bag. Regular fluffing or shaking can help maintain its loftiness and shape.

Factors to consider when choosing bean bag fillings

You must consider several factors when selecting the best filling for your bean bag. Each type of filling has its unique characteristics, and understanding these factors will help you make an informed decision that suits your needs and preferences.

A. comfort and support:

One of the primary considerations when selecting a bean bag filling is the level of comfort and support it provides. Polystyrene beads, for example, are lightweight and mould to your body, offering excellent comfort and flexibility. They easily conform to your shape, ensuring a cozy and snug feel.

On the other hand, shredded memory foam offers a more substantial and supportive experience. The foam contours to your body and provides excellent pressure relief, making it a great choice for individuals who prefer a firmer seating option.

While not as dense as memory foam, microfiber or polyester fiberfill still provides decent support and cushioning. These fillings are soft, hypoallergenic, and offer a plush feel that some people find extremely comfortable.

B. Durability and longevity:

Another crucial factor to consider is the durability and longevity of the filling material. Polystyrene beads are lightweight and highly resilient. They are known for their long-lasting nature. They resist compression and can retain their shape even after extended use.

Although highly durable, shredded memory foam may lose some of its loftiness over time. However, high-quality memory foam can retain its shape and support for a considerable period, ensuring a lasting bean bag filling.

Microfiber or polyester fiberfill, while generally durable, may flatten and become less supportive with extended use. Regular fluffing and maintenance can help prolong the lifespan.

C. Cost-effectiveness:

The cost of the filling material is also an important consideration for many individuals. Polystyrene beads are typically the most affordable option, making them attractive for those on a budget. You can easily replace them if needed, as they are widely available.

Shredded memory foam tends to be more expensive than polystyrene beads, but it offers excellent value for money, considering its comfort and durability. While it may require a higher upfront investment, its longevity can offset this cost in the long run.

Microfiber or polyester fiberfill falls in the mid-range in terms of cost. It provides a good balance between affordability and comfort, making it a popular choice for many.

Ultimately, the best filling material for your bean bag will depend on your preferences, budget, and the specific qualities you are looking for in terms of comfort, support, durability, and cost-effectiveness.

Considering these factors will ensure that you make a well-informed decision and select a bean bag filling that suits your needs and provides the ultimate comfort and enjoyment.

Environmental impact of bean bag fillings

When it comes to choosing the best filling for your bean bags, it's not just about comfort and durability. It's also important to consider the environmental impact of the materials used. This section will explore the various environmental factors associated with different types of bean bag fillings.

A. Recyclability

One of the key considerations when evaluating the environmental impact of bean bag fillings is recyclability. Polystyrene beads, commonly used in bean bags, are not easily recycled. Due to their lightweight and static nature, they can become a significant source of litter and pollution if not properly disposed of. While some recycling facilities may accept polystyrene, the process is often complex and not widely available.

On the other hand, shredded memory foam and microfiber or polyester fiberfill are generally more recyclable. These materials can be repurposed or recycled into new products, reducing their contribution to landfill waste. It is worth noting, however, that the recycling options for these materials may vary depending on local recycling facilities.

B. Biodegradability

Biodegradability is another crucial factor when considering the environmental impact of bean bag fillings. Polystyrene beads, unfortunately, do not decompose naturally and can persist in the environment for hundreds of years. Polystyrene beads pose a significant threat to wildlife, especially marine life, as these beads can be mistaken for food and ingested.

On the other hand, shredded memory foam and microfiber or polyester fiberfill are typically biodegradable to some extent. While these may take longer to break down than natural materials, they do not pose the same long-term environmental hazards as polystyrene beads.

C. Sustainability

Sustainability is becoming an increasingly important consideration in our purchasing decisions. When it comes to bean bag fillings, there are sustainable options available. Some manufacturers now offer eco-friendly alternatives, such as bean bag fillings made from recycled materials or natural fibres like organic cotton or hemp.

By opting for sustainable bean bag fillings, you can reduce your carbon footprint and support environmentally conscious practices. These fillings often come with certifications or labels that indicate their eco-friendly attributes, making it easier for consumers to make informed choices.

It is important to note that the availability and affordability of sustainable bean bag fillings may vary, and it's essential to research and compare options based on your values and budget.

In conclusion, considering the environmental impact of bean bag fillings is crucial for responsible consumption. While polystyrene beads may offer comfort and support, they have significant drawbacks regarding recyclability and biodegradability. While more environmentally friendly, shredded memory foam and microfiber or polyester fiberfill may still have room for improvement. Opting for sustainable alternatives can help mitigate the environmental impact and ensure a greener future for our planet.


In conclusion, choosing the best filling for your bean bag depends on personal preference and considering various factors. Polystyrene beads, shredded memory foam, and microfiber or polyester fiberfill are popular options, each offering advantages.

Polystyrene beads are lightweight and provide excellent support and comfort. They are also durable and cost-effective, making them popular for many bean bag owners. However, they can lose shape over time and may not be the most environmentally friendly option.

Shredded memory foam, on the other hand, offers superior comfort and support. It conforms to the body, providing a luxurious seating experience. It is also more durable than polystyrene beads and retains its shape for longer. However, it can be slightly more expensive and may not be suitable for those looking for a lightweight filling.

For those concerned about the environment, microfiber or polyester fiberfill is a great choice. These fillings are often made from recycled materials, making them a sustainable option. They also provide a soft and plush feel, although they may offer less support than polystyrene beads or memory foam.

When choosing the best filling for your bean bag, it is essential to consider factors such as comfort, support, durability, longevity, and cost-effectiveness. Additionally, thinking about the environmental impact of the fillings is crucial in making an informed decision.

While polystyrene beads may be the most cost-effective option, they may not be the most sustainable choice. On the other hand, shredded memory foam and microfiber or polyester fiberfill offer superior comfort and environmentally friendly alternatives.

Ultimately, the best filling for your bean bag depends on your preferences and priorities. Consider the factors outlined in this article and weigh them against your needs to make the best choice for your comfort, budget, and the environment.

So, whether you choose the lightweight and affordable polystyrene beads, the luxurious and supportive shredded memory foam, or the environmentally friendly microfiber or polyester fiberfill, rest assured that you are filling your bean bag with the best option. Sit back, relax, and enjoy your comfortable and eco-friendly seating experience!

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