Best Soft Sided Coolers in 2021

Jason Webster
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There are some coolers out there that are better than others of course, but if you’re a guy who likes to buy a lot of coolers, and plan to use them for plenty of activities, you need to find the best soft sided coolers in 2021.

Whether you’re going on a long hunting trip, throwing a big party, or preparing for a blackout emergency, it’s essential that you have a cooler that is lightweight and easy to transport. That’s why soft sided coolers are so popular, but there are still a few key features to look for when you’re shopping. Keep reading for reviews of some of the top soft sided coolers on the market today.

NameCategoryProduct
CleverMade Collapsible Cooler Bag: Insulated Leakproof 50 Can Soft Sided Portable Cooler BagBest OverallCleverMade Collapsible Cooler Bag: Insulated Leakproof 50 Can Soft Sided Portable Cooler Bag
Coleman 16-Can Soft CoolerBudget PickColeman 16-Can Soft Cooler
YETI Hopper Two Portable CoolerUpgrade PickYETI Hopper Two Portable Cooler

1. CleverMade Collapsible Cooler Bag: Insulated Leakproof 50 Can Soft Sided Portable Cooler Bag

Our rating: 9 / 10

CleverMade Collapsible Cooler Bag: Insulated Leakproof 50 Can Soft Sided Portable Cooler Bag

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Pros:

  • Dimensions are 8.3" x 5.9" x 5.5"
  • Cost friendly for college students
  • It is easy to clean
  • Perfect companion for the beach
  • Durable and lightweight
  • Keeps items cold for a long time

Cons:

  • Some complaints that the bottom collapses easily
  • The zippers are not very durable

If you are looking for a fantastic collapsible cooler that is affordable, lightweight, and compact, then you can't go wrong with the CleverMade Collapsible Cooler Bag. The bag is versatile and can be used for many things.

This bag is great for taking lunch to work or school, it is lightweight and you can puncture it and use it as a backpack to carry your items. You can also use it as a beach bag to keep your bottled drinks cold while you and your friends relax on the sand.

When you are ready to hit the road, the bag can be used for camping, tailgating, or for going on a picnic. It is great for transporting frozen food that you cooked at home to a cookout at the beach or park. This is a must-have if you do any traveling or plan to go on the road with your food.

2. Arctic Zone Titan Deep Freeze Zipperless Hardbody Cooler

Our rating: 9 / 10

Arctic Zone Titan Deep Freeze Zipperless Hardbody Cooler

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Pros:

  • A capacity of 20 quarts, which should be enough for a few days of picnic with friends
  • It can double as a seat with the plastic dividers attached
  • The highly durable polyester material is thick and rugged
  • It's not only handy, but also aesthetically pleasing
  • Wheels are easy to maneuver by everyone
  • The waterproofing seems to be worth the money paid
  • The mold-proof seal prevents any kind of leakage.
  • It's cheaper than many other coolers in the same category

Cons:

  • The cooler weighs more than 25 pounds and can be difficult to carry around on your own
  • It doesn't store ice for as long as advertised
  • The assembly instructions are confusing, and you'll need an extra pair of hands to help you.

We were looking for a wheeled cooler for our camping trips, so our family could transport our drinks, food, and other must-haves to our chosen destination with ease. The Arctic Zone cold has a capacity of 20 quarts, and with a zipperless design, we could just pack and go. When we arrived at our destination, we set it right on top of its detachable wheel base. It became a rolling seat, and we could easily access everything on our cooler.

3. YETI Hopper Flip Portable Cooler

Our rating: 8 / 10

YETI Hopper Flip Portable Cooler

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Pros:

  • Separates into two 20-quart insulated compartments
  • Comes at a very reasonable price
  • Keeps ice cool for up to 5 days!
  • Ultra-wide single-handed opening
  • Available in 4 colors

The Yeti Hopper Flip is a soft-sided 20 quart cooler that's big enough for a full day of water, soda, and ice-cold beer, while still being spacious enough to carry a 15-inch laptop.

The Yeti Hopper Flip can basically be used for any outdoor activity or sports. It's available in 4 different colors and boasts high-quality insulation. The double-sealed zippers make it completely waterproof. But Tomadazit as the double-wall design. The shell of the Yeti Hopper flips is not waterproof.

Its Wide-mouth opening makes it super easy to load, unload and clean. It's perfect for hot summer days or days when you want to keep a lot of things cool.

4. Coleman 16-Can Soft Cooler

Our rating: 8 / 10

Coleman 16-Can Soft Cooler

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Pros:

  • Wide mouth for easy filling
  • Ice packs are removable for easy cleaning
  • Extra wide opening for easy access
  • Can carry up to 16 cans of beer
  • No leaks

Cons:

  • Collapses easily when filled with heavy objects
  • The cooling function isn’t brilliant

The Coleman 16-Can Soft Cooler is an extra large cooler bag with a 40-quart capacity. Despite its large size, the Coleman cooler can still hold up to 16 cans of beers! It is reinforced by a sturdy poly-tin liner that can hold ice to keep your food chilled for up to 8 hours.

Backpack straps make carrying the cooler bag easy. The wide mouth can even fit a 1-liter bottle into the bag. The bag is waterproof, and the zipper is sturdy and leak-proof. It belongs as one of the best soft-sided coolers on the list.

It is not a thermos or a thermoelectric cooler. In simple terms, it will keep your drinks cool for a long time, but it will not freeze them.

5. TOURIT Soft Cooler 30 Cans Leak-Proof Soft Pack Cooler Bag Waterproof Insulated Soft Sided Cooler

Our rating: 8 / 10

TOURIT Soft Cooler 30 Cans Leak-Proof Soft Pack Cooler Bag Waterproof Insulated Soft Sided Cooler

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Pros:

  • Very durable
  • Works well in any season
  • Easy to clean
  • Available in multiple sizes
  • It locks well

Cons:

  • The zipper isn’t the best quality
  • Not the quickest cooler on the market

Here's a cool backpack that's much more than just a regular soft pack cooler. This bag features a large 30-can capacity, and an insulated inner that keeps foods cold for several hours.

It's made of waterproof 600D material, and it's designed to endure any weather conditions. The bag features a long shoulder strap, making it easy to carry even when full.

This backpack is built to withstand the elements. It’s BPA free, it's dishwasher safe, and it's also weather-resistant.

6. YETI Hopper Two Portable Cooler

Our rating: 8 / 10

YETI Hopper Two Portable Cooler

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Pros:

  • Three-way carrying system (shoulder strap, backpack straps, or as a roller)
  • Massive ice retention (up to 10 days)
  • Reinforced bottom with 2-inch webbing and 1/4-inch steel
  • Huge storage capacity

Cons:

  • Heavy (This is to be expected as the Hopper is a massive cooler and will discourage most from taking it with them on hikes and bike-trips)
  • Cumbersome wheels feel a little bit flimsy
  • Expensive

The Hopper line of coolers are on the expensive side of the spectrum. The Yeti Hopper Two offers you a massive legendary ice retention system that will keep your food and drinks fresh for days at a time.

A typical Yeti will retain ice for up to 10 days, which makes it perfect for extended trips to remote areas where it will be difficult to refill the cooler.

The Hopper 2 is available in 20 and 30 liters. Both models come equipped with the three-way carrying system: as a backpack, a chest sling, and a side-sling. The wheels are very solid and quite easy to maneuver, especially considering the massive load.

7. ENGEL HD30 Waterproof Soft-Sided Cooler Tote Bag

Our rating: 6 / 10

ENGEL HD30 Waterproof Soft-Sided Cooler Tote Bag

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The Engel Cooler is the perfect beach bag. It’s large enough to hold a lot of drinks and other items. It’s also collapsible and flexible so that you can fit it into most car and RV cup holders. The interior is high-density foam insulation to keep all that ice you put in it from melting.

The bag also comes with a 2-year warranty and a 100% satisfaction guarantee.

The exterior of the bag is made from 900 denier nylon that is durable and waterproof. It features wheels on the bottom along with a foldable handle that allows you to carry it like a suitcase when you are ready to depart.

8. RTIC Insulated Soft Cooler Bag

Our rating: 6 / 10

RTIC Insulated Soft Cooler Bag

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Pros:

  • Made with high-quality materials
  • Insulated to keep ice from melting
  • Can keep ice frozen up to 3 days
  • Large enough to accommodate everything needed for a picnic
  • Stylish design
  • Affordable price
  • Easy to carry
  • Bottom handle as well as inbuilt strap
  • Washable and leak proof

The RTIC Soft Cooler Bag is a highly functional cooler that will keep ice frozen for 3 days in a row. It is made using premium quality 18-8 stainless steel alloy, which makes it resistant to rust and corrosion. It is powder coated for extra durability. The material used to make this product is heavy duty and will be able to handle heavy weight. The paint is baked and will be able to resist natural elements and will be able to handle scratches.

The company has put in place a warranty for the product. They have manufactured the product in the United States. The product is BPA, Lead, Phthalate, and PVC free. The bag is perfectly portable and can be carried to the raves, concerts, long drives, hiking and sporting events. This product is very lightweight and portable.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

What is the best soft sided cooler?

What Soft Cooler keeps ice the longest?

The secret to keeping ice for longer in your soft cooler is all about maximizing the space that your ice can cover. That means you’ll want the largest ice pack possible. The most effective ice pack you’ll be able to find will be the one that sits right on top of your food and drinks. Many soft coolers feature fold down trays that allows you to pack all your food and drinks on top of the ice. And then you just pack your ice around them. Or you can also use another cooler bag, perhaps one liner that is inside your bigger cooler sack.

Are soft coolers any good?

Yes. Soft coolers are GREAT for things like camping, beach outings, and family picnics. They’re lightweight and compact. They also tend to be kind to your back as you’re going up and down the trail with the kids and all their extra gear. But that’s not to say they’re not without their drawbacks.

Because they’re made from a soft, flexible fabric (usually nylon or vinyl) they can be a little more fragile than hard coolers. Plus, over time, the zippers or seams may let go and it’s tough to repair them. That’s why it’s a good idea to purchase a cooler that has reinforced handles and an interior liner that’s more durable than the exterior.

What soft coolers are comparable to Yeti?

One of the main reasons people go for soft coolers is because they are less expensive than hard coolers. Yet when it comes to insulation, they don’t stand a chance next to the hype of the Yeti. Yeti, Igloo, RTIC, these make some of the best soft coolers available. Yet other brands like Coleman, Grizzly and YETI knockoff brands like Polar Bear and Maverick are making lucrative progress. But if you want the ultimate, there is still only one Yeti.

But if you are up to something in the below segment.

You don’t want to lose what most people worry about with soft coolers, lets say the ability to keep ice for more than a day. Igloo, Polar Bear, Coleman, Grizzly and other brands are working to improve this feature but hard coolers still have an edge on this. Yet they are some of the cheapest in the market.

Conclusion

Finding the best soft side cooler isn’t too difficult. Our research led us to Piel Soft Side Cooler as the best overall option for anyone who needs to store a lot of food or drink for a picnic or outdoor gear. The Walmart name brand from Coleman is a great choice if you want something inexpensive and relatively low-cost. We also liked the NUOLUX Cooler, which has rollers and a strong fabric exterior.

Our Recommendation

NameCategoryProduct
CleverMade Collapsible Cooler Bag: Insulated Leakproof 50 Can Soft Sided Portable Cooler BagBest OverallCleverMade Collapsible Cooler Bag: Insulated Leakproof 50 Can Soft Sided Portable Cooler Bag
Coleman 16-Can Soft CoolerBudget PickColeman 16-Can Soft Cooler
YETI Hopper Two Portable CoolerUpgrade PickYETI Hopper Two Portable Cooler