Camping Tips

How do you keep your face warm in a sleeping bag?

Having a freezing cold face while camping can easily disrupt your sleep. The cold draft and cold air can keep you up all night if you aren’t warm enough. Losing body heat through your head can lead to a miserable night of trying to sleep. So how can you keep your face warm when you are in your sleeping bag and feel cozy?

To keep your face warm in your sleeping bag you should wear a beanie to cover your head and either wear a balaclava to cover your face or use a mummy style sleeping bag to wrap around your face. These options will ensure your face stays warm as you sleep.

While your goal may be to keep your face warm as you are laying in your sleeping bag, there are many things you can do before you even setup camp to help ensure optimal conditions so that you can sleep warmer and have a warm face. Below we will go over things to consider when setting up your tent, what you can wear to warm your face, and other gear items you can use to warm your face even more.

Keeping Your Face Warm In Your Sleeping Bag

green tent in the snow at night

Picking the Right Tent Location

Before you even lay down in your sleeping bag, the most important decision you need to make to help you stay warm in your sleeping bag is to pick the right tent location. You want to choose a tent location that is blocked by any potential wind. If you can find a location near a large boulder or wall. This will drastically decrease any cold airflow that enters your tent.

If there are no walls or big boulders around then you want to try to face your tent so that the wind is parallel to your tent and not blowing into your tent. This will help you stay warmer since less cold air will flow through your tent.

Cover Your Tent

Once you have chosen a good spot to setup your tent, the next thing to do is setup the rain cover on your tent. Even if there is no rain in the forecast, this will help block any unwanted wind from entering your tent. Rain covers will also help trap any body heat from quickly leaving through the mesh of your tent. This will help make the inside of the tent much warmer.

Blocking Tent Drafts

Now that you have your tent setup and covered, there are still some areas where unwanted airflow can creep in. For this I like to try to block areas where I feel wind blowing into my tent with any extra clothes or my pack. This will help you stay warmer so wind isn’t blowing directly on you as you are laying down. Having small drafts blow on you as you sleep can be the difference of feeling freezing and feeling warm and cozy, so its important to block any unwanted airflow.

What You Can Wear To Keep Your Face Warm When Camping

female hiker with a face covering in the snow

Cover your Head

The first thing you want to keep warm is to cover your head. Your head releases a lot of body heat if it is left uncovered. The cool air while camping will make you feel extra cold if you do not have a head cover. To offset this you can wear a beanie to help trap the heat in.

Wearing a beanie will make your face feel warmer as the warmth of your body will stay in your head instead of flowing out to your tent.


A great item to help warm your face is to wear a balaclava in your sleeping bag. Balaclavas will wrap around your neck, cover your mouth, wrap around your ears, and have the option to wrap around the top of your head. This will make your face feel extra warm since the heat of your breaths will be trapped from the mouth covering of the balaclava.

With balaclavas you have the option to lower the mouth covering portion if you get to warm. Balaclavas are made of many different materials such as mesh, polyester, and fleece. If your face feels very cold you can opt for a fleece balaclava which will help your face stay very warm.

Under Armour Balaclava on Amazon

Face Mask or Gaiter

An alternative to wearing a balaclava is to wear a neck gaiter or a face mask in your sleeping bag. Wearing these items will block cold air from touching your face and it will help trap your warm breath back onto your face. Covering your face in your sleeping bag will help your face stay warm drastically.

BUFF Merino Wool Neck Gaiter on Amazon

Mummy Sleeping Bag

Another item you can use to keep your face warm is a mummy style sleeping bag. Mummy style sleeping bags wrap around the contours of your body and usually have a pull string where your head is. The pull string allows you to tighten the sleeping bag against your face. This will help block unwanted air and also keep the warmth of your entire body in your sleeping bag.

Mummy Sleeping Bags on Amazon

Additional Gear to Keep Your Face Warm

two sleeping bags rolled out in a car

Using a Warm Bottle

If you have setup your tent in an ideal location, blocked any incoming drafts, have your face warmed by a beanie and face cover and you still feel cold, then there are two other things you can add to your sleeping bag to help warm your face. The first thing you can do is boil some water and add it to a heat resistant bottle. You should have about 70 percent boiling water and 30% normal water so you do it isn’t too hot. Test out the heat by touching the bottle and slowly add more hot water to the bottle.

Having a warm bottle in your sleeping bag will add external heat to your sleeping bag and help keep your face warm. This is a great trick to help if you also have cold hands or cold feet. The heat from the bottle with dissipate over night and hopefully be warm enough to help you feel warm and sleep soundly.

Nalgene Heat Resistant Bottle on AMazon

Using Heating Pads

An alternative to using a warm bottle is to buy disposable heating pads. These heating pads are typically used in the winter to warm hands or feet. They can get quite warm so be careful when putting it close to your face. These will generate a good amount of extra heat to keep your face warm. The downside is that they will not last all night.

Hot Hands Heating Pads on Amazon

Final Thoughts

Sleeping with a cold face in your sleeping bag can be no fun. The draft of the cold wind and the dry feeling on your skin can prevent you from falling asleep. Covering your face with a balaclava, face mask, or neck gaiter will help trap heat from your body, block wind, and help warm your face.

On top of covering your face we went over other strategies to have an optimal tent setup so cold drafts of wind doesn’t enter your tent. Having a warm and cozy tent and feeling warm in your sleeping bag is important for a good nights rest. The strategies above should help you have a warm face and sleep comfortably on your next camping trip.

More Helpful Resources