Camping Tents: The Purpose of the Different Types of Materials

quality tent

Whether camping alone or with friends/ family, having a roof over your head is a must. There are lots of tents and shelters available on the market which can be quite challenging for novice campers. While choosing the right size is easy (by determining the number of people), choosing a quality tent and the right type of tent material can be overwhelming. In order to make the right choice,knowing certain details about all of the options is paramount.


Nylon falls into the category of man-made fabrics and is extremely lightweight. In order to make it more durable, especially when used for tents, this fabric is usually coated with polyurethane (PU), acrylic and silicone. The main disadvantage of this fabric is that it can be easily torn. However, there are more quality types of nylon fabric which have a ‘ripstop’ mesh, making it more durable and long-lasting.

tents and shelters


Without a doubt, polyester is one of the most commonly used fabric for tents Australia campers state. This man-made fabric is extremely affordable, lightweight, quick to dry and requires less maintenance when compared to some other fabrics for tents. Unlike nylon, tents and shelters made of polyester are not prone to rips because they are less affected by the sun. What’s more, when compared to canvas or cotton, polyester is resistant to mould and mildew which is another reason for its popularity. Additionally, polyester comes in many weights and can have lots of coatings which makes it one-of-a-kind type of fabric for shelters and tents.

Cotton Canvas

Present on the market since ever, cotton canvas is a fabric that has been used for creating tents since ever. This fabric is greatly favoured for its thermo-insulation properties. In other words, cotton canvas is great in keeping you cool when the weather is hot, and warm when the weather is cold. Cotton is a natural material that’s breathable while being a better insulator. This fabric also has great sound insulating properties, however, it has lots of downsides as well. No matter how natural and breathable it is, cotton canvas tents require more maintenance. This material absorbs a lot of water and leaking is a quite common thing. Because of this, the threads in the canvas can swell slightly which can additionally cause some gaps in between the material. Unfortunately, over time, these gaps will allow water to seep through it. Last but not least, cotton tents are quite heavy which makes them not the ideal choice for camping and hiking, especially not for those who plan to camp in different places.

Clean Canvas Tent

How to Clean Canvas Tent?

The easiest way to clean a canvas tent is by dissembling it and placing it on the ground. Once done, you can start brushing it off with a soft bristle brush in order to remove any dry dust and dirt. To fully clean the tent, washing it with lukewarm water and a delicate soap solution is a must. You can repeat the steps until the tent is completely clean and when done, you can rinse it with cold water.


Also known as coated-cotton, poly-cotton is a good alternative to the cotton canvas fabric. Although similar at first sight, poly-cotton tents are lighter in weight and have a weather-resistant coating which means that it doesn’t absorb water like cotton canvas. When exposed to sunlight, over time the coating may change in colour, so if you think that this will bother you, choosing a polyester or nylon tent and shelter is a better option.

Important Things to Consider

No matter how waterproof the material is, if not sealed right, the tent won’t be waterproof. That’s why you need to make sure that you have chosen the right model – this can be done by understanding the tent’s description.

  • Fully Taped Seams – This means that all seams on the tent are taped and the tent is 100% waterproof.
  • Critically Taped Seams – If this is written on the tent label, then this means that only the exposed seams are sealed.
  • Welded Seams – In this case, the material is fused together with the help of heat and pressure. This sealing technique cannot be used on all materials, and it’s mainly used for sealing tent floors that are made of polyethylene.

Camping under shade

How to Cool Down a Tent While Camping?

One of the safest way to stay cooler in the tent when camping in summer is to set it up under a shade. Letting trees absorb the sunlight instead of your tent is one of the easiest ways for staying cool when in the tent. However, there are some other ways that can surely help you out.

How to Get Rid of Mold in a Tent?

As you all might already know, mould is a fungal growth that can cause many allergies in some people. The main cause of mould when it comes to tents is not leaving it to fully dry when dissembled. The ideal way to get rid of it is to clean it by hand with warm water and non-detergent soap, however, this can range from one fabric to another.