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The 12 Best Camping Headlamps [2023]

Amar Hussain's image
Amar Hussain

Amar Hussain

Senior Content Contributor

Countries Visited: 63U.S. States Visited: 9

Amar is an avid traveler and tester of products. He has spent the last 13 years traveling all 7 continents and has put the products to the test on each of them. He has contributed to publications incl...
Edited by: Keri Stooksbury

Keri Stooksbury

Editor-in-Chief

Countries Visited: 41U.S. States Visited: 28

With years of experience in corporate marketing and as the Executive Director of the American Chamber of Commerce in Qatar, Keri is now Editor-in-Chief at UP, overseeing daily content operations and r...

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Camping is a favorite pastime for people all over the world. However, it’s easy to forget what being in the wilderness actually means. You can’t just flip on a switch to see in the dark, for example.

While flashlights are a great way to make sure you have light, they can be inconvenient if you want your hands free. That’s why headlamps are so useful.

Things To Consider With Camping Headlamps

A good camping headlamp should offer you enough light to be able to see where you’re going without constantly worrying you might fall or bump into something. However, there are some other specifics you should consider before you buy one.

Design

Most camping headlamps have the same basic design. Image Credit: Amar Hussain

Most camping headlamps have the same basic design. They usually have some sort of strap that goes around the top of your head with a light in the center.

However, there are some design differences that you should consider:

  • Some headlamps are designed to be adjustable with elastic or Velcro.
  • Some lamps have the light placed in the center of your forehead, which can change the way it fits.
  • Some headlamps might be better designed to fit around a hat or might be designed like a hat with a light attached.

Size and Weight

Most headlamps are adjustable to fit your head. Image Credit: Amar Hussain

The size and weight of a headlamp will also affect if one is appropriate for you.

Some headlamps might have varying degrees of adjustability. For example, a lamp designed to fit children and adults will be able to be adjusted more than a lamp designed for just adults.

Knowing how much a headlamp strap can be adjusted will help you determine if one is the right size for you.

Weight is also a consideration when purchasing a headlamp. A child’s lamp will likely be lightweight because it’s designed for a small head and neck to support.

Bottom Line: Adult-designed headlamps might be heavier than child versions. In addition, the number of lights on a headlamp may also add weight.

Power Type

Rechargeable headlamps can be a convenient option. Image Credit: Amar Hussain

Headlamps may all have built-in light bulbs or LEDs, but the way they’re powered can differ.

Typically headlamps will run on 2 types of power:

  • Battery-powered: These are often the least expensive options up-front, which makes them a tempting option. However, the lower up-front cost is to help offset the cost of buying replacement batteries.
  • Rechargeable: Rechargeable headlamps can be a convenient option. They typically come with a charging cord you can plug in or a charger specifically for the headlamp. These options don’t require repeated battery purchases but may need to be charged during your trip.

Durability

A headlamp’s material and intended use should be considered before you purchase one. Camping headlamps are often designed to withstand different weather conditions to varying degrees.

The most durable options will be waterproof and drop-resistant. They’ll also have a high-quality strap made out of nylon or a similar material. However, less expensive options might offer less water protection or might be more prone to wear and tear.

It’s important to consider why you want to purchase a headlamp so you can ensure you pick one that offers the level of durability you need.

Light

You should look at the amount of light a headlamp provides before you purchase one. Image Credit: Amar Hussain

The most important feature of a headlamp is its light. However, not all headlamps are made equally in this regard. You should look at the amount of light a headlamp provides before you purchase one.

Here are some things to look for:

  • The lumen amount a headlamp has. This will affect the amount of light it produces.
  • The distance the headlamp can illuminate. This will determine your vision depth.
  • The scope of light, aka how wide of a space the lamp illuminates. This will determine how much of a space you’ll be able to see in the dark.

The 12 Best Camping Headlamps

Though they might seem like it, camping headlamps aren’t all the same. In fact, they can have vast differences that could affect how useful they’ll be to you.

We’ve researched and assessed the pros and cons of the best camping headlamps on the market. We hope our list helps narrow your search.

1. An Adjustable Headlamp for Any Camper

DISCOUNT: 33%
BEST OVERALL: GearLight LED Head Lamp
With this pack of 2 headlamps, you'll always be prepared if you have to navigate your way around in the dark, whether you're outside or in a dark room or cave.

GearLight LED Head Lamp

If you’re in the market for a camping headlamp but are worried about figuring out sizing, this option from GearLight is perfect.

This model is an adjustable headlamp that can fit a wide variety of head sizes. In fact, both children and adults can use it.

It’s lightweight as well, so you don’t have to worry about neck strain or extra weight from a heavy lamp. The lamp is also powerful and has 7 different lighting mode options to suit any situation. The lights are powered by 3 AAA batteries and not some other less common battery type.

This is also a great value for your money. You get 2 headlamps in this set, so you can have a spare or give one away.

What We Like:

  • Multiple safety lamp options

What We Don’t Like:

  • Batteries not included

2. Headlamp You Can Use on the Job

DISCOUNT: 25%
UPGRADE PICK: DanForce Headlamp
You can wear this headlamp directly, or you can fit it around a hat or helmet. It's designed to be comfortable, and it won't weigh down your head or neck.

DanForce Headlamp

Headlamps aren’t just useful for camping. Any situation that could require lighting is one where you can use a headlamp. DanForce knows that and came up with this durable option.

This headlamp was designed to fit comfortably on your head or around a hard hat or helmet. So no matter what you do for work or as a hobby, this headlamp has you covered.

The headlamp is also resistant to damage from dropping, water, dust, and debris. It’s truly a sturdy option that you can rely on.

The lamp’s head strap is even absorbent, so you don’t have to worry about overheating or getting uncomfortable from sweat. You also get the power of over 1,000 lumens to see clearly in the dark.

What We Like:

  • Rechargeable batteries

What We Don’t Like:

  • Feels heavy

3. Lightweight Headlamp Option for on the Go

DISCOUNT: 28%
Foxelli LED Headlamp Flashlight
This battery-powered headlamp is so convenient you can just slip it on without worrying about it losing power or falling off. It fits comfortably snug even if you use it for jogging.

Foxelli LED Headlamp Flashlight

If you’re looking for a headlamp you can easily slip on and head out on an adventure, consider this option from Foxelli. It’s designed with comfort and ease in mind. It’s lightweight, so you don’t have to worry about straining yourself or getting tired from the extra weight.

It’s also adjustable, so it’s guaranteed to be a perfect fit for you. You don’t have to deal with a head strap that’s too tight or too loose. The light is small, but it’s still powerful enough to let you see in the dark, and it only needs 3 AAA batteries to work.

It’s also all-weather appropriate thanks to its durable waterproof design. So you can use it at any time of year and in any environmental condition.

What We Like:

  • One-size-fits-most

What We Don’t Like:

  • Flimsy strap

Hot Tip: Learn more about the best camping lights and lanterns for your next adventure.

4. IPX4-Rated Water-resistant Headlamp

DISCOUNT: 39%
ENERGIZER LED Headlamp
With Energizer's seal of approval, this headlamp is a reliable tool that will light your way even if you're in a pitch-black environment. It even comes with its first set of batteries.

ENERGIZER LED Headlamp

Energizer is a leader in any field it enters in, and headlamps are no different. If you’re looking for an option you can rely on to work when you need it to, this is the headlamp for you. The headlamp is comfortable and lightweight, allowing for easy hands-free movement.

Since it’s designed by a leading battery company, you can rest assured that the LEDs are energy efficient. So you don’t have to worry about carrying a pack of spare batteries with you. The LED lights are also 12x stronger than typical LEDs, putting this model on the cutting edge of camping technology.

The lamp itself is durable, so you can use it for a variety of outdoor activities, from running to mountain climbing, without worrying about it getting damaged.

What We Like:

  • Batteries included

What We Don’t Like:

  • Strap can slip

5. A Functional Headlamp for Small kids

DISCOUNT: 17%
The Original DinoBryte LED Headlamp
Your kid will love camping if they have this headlamp. Its fun design even comes with sound. It's also great for kids who are afraid of the dark to wear at home or while traveling.

The Original DinoBryte LED Headlamp

Getting kids excited about camping is even easier with a headlamp like this one from DinoBryte. Shaped like a T-Rex head and face, young campers will love wearing this headlamp for nighttime activities.

The light shines from the T-Rex’s mouth rather than its eyes (like some other options), which allows for a larger bulb and more light.

An extra fun touch is the sound aspect of the lamp. When the dinosaur opens its mouth to shine its light, it emits a roaring noise. The on/off switch is also easy to find and reach, so there’s no worrying about fumbling around trying to turn the lamp on or off.

What We Like:

  • Easy to use

What We Don’t Like:

  • Limited design options

6. A Headlamp Option for Any Occasion

Vont LED Headlamp
This is a great set if you are planning a camping trip with a group. It comes with 4 lamps, but the convenience doesn't sacrifice quality. The bands won't rip, and the lights are bright.

Vont LED Headlamp

If you’re looking for a headlamp you can bring with you for more than just camping, Vont has an option that you might want to consider.

These LED headlamps are lightweight and easy to use, making them perfect not just for camping but also for biking, jogging, fishing, and more. Since they’re also water-resistant and durable, you can also use them in any weather conditions without worrying about damage.

This pack is also a great value as you get 4 headlamps that last up to 90 hours. That means you can have enough spares to last years, or you can use this as a great family pack. In fact, since the headlamps are so adjustable, they’re great for all ages, including children.

What We Like:

  • Lifetime warranty

What We Don’t Like:

  • Only 200 lumens

7. Snowproof and Dustproof Headlamp

DISCOUNT: 42%
Headlamp Flashlight
This headlamp is rechargeable --- all you need is a USB port and you'll be able to power it up. You can also choose between 4 different light modes to fit your needs.

Headlamp Flashlight

Campers who want a headlamp they can control the brightness of should look into this option. Not only can you customize the fit of this headband, but you can also decide which light mode will best suit you.

The headlamp fits comfortably and securely thanks to its double strap design, which allows you more ease in your hands-free movement.

You can even zoom in or out with the light so you can make sure you have its spotlight focused properly. It’s also rechargeable, so you don’t have to worry about carrying extra batteries around with you.

Though the headlamp is easy to use, purchasing it gives you access to the company’s customer support team, who are there to answer any questions you might have.

What We Like:

  • Intuitive to use

What We Don’t Like:

  • A little bulky

8. A Simple and Easy To Use Headlamp

Petzl TIKKINA Headlamp
You can slip this headlamp in your pocket so you're never caught off guard, especially in the early morning or evening hours when the sun can disappear out of nowhere.

Petzl TIKKINA Headlamp

If you want a lot of power from your headlamp but you don’t necessarily want to mess around with a lot of extra frills, Petzl’s got you covered with this option.

It’s a simple, lightweight, and durable headlamp that’s also easy to use. It also provides reliable lighting that won’t dim or flicker with too much use, as is the case with some other simple options.

It was also designed to be user-friendly. Rather than have multiple buttons and switches to deal with, there’s a single button that controls everything.

What We Like:

  • Simple to use

What We Don’t Like:

  • Lacks the modes other headlamps have

9. The Perfect Headlamp for You and Your Partner

DISCOUNT: 17%
EverBrite LED Headlamp
This headlamp is water-resistant and withstands different temperatures, so it's perfect for any weather conditions you find yourself in. The lamps run on AAA batteries, which can be found anywhere batteries are sold.

EverBrite LED Headlamp

Are you looking for headlamps for your next couple’s or friends’ camping trip? Then you should consider opting for this EverBrite model. This 2-pack of headlamps isn’t just convenient, it’s also well worth the money.

EverBrite is a popular headlamp brand thanks to its durable and reliable designs. This headlamp is waterproof, so it’s appropriate for whatever the weather throws at you. It’s also resistant to other types of damage that can occur from dropping the headlamp or getting dust and debris in it.

You can also adjust the angle of the head to guarantee that the light is directed where you need it to be.  You also don’t have to worry about battery life. The minimum amount of time the battery will run is 9 hours.

What We Like:

  • Long-lasting battery

What We Don’t Like:

  • Needs 3 batteries each

10. Convenient Headlamps for Easy Recharging

LED Headlamp
Thanks to this lamp's wide beam of light, you'll have 230 degrees of illumination to help you see. It's also motion-activated to let you stay hands-free while you're using it.

LED Headlamp

If you’re the type of person who wants simplicity and convenience in their life, this is the headlamp for you. With a USB charger, you can recharge your headlamp batteries practically anywhere.

It has a motion sensor, so you won’t need to feel around to turn it on or off, and you can continue to go on with your business.

The lamp also has a wide beam that offers you a wide visual, so you don’t have to worry about constantly turning your head to know what’s going on in the dark around you. You also get 2 lamps in this pack, which is extra convenient, whether you want a spare or to give one away.

What We Like:

  • Wide visibility

What We Don’t Like:

  • Plastic can be uncomfortable

11. Super-bright Headlamp that Means Business

AMAKER LED Rechargeable Headlamp
A waterproof headlamp. You can wear this model while you're fishing or exploring caves without having to worry about moisture shorting out the light. You can also zoom the light for extra focus.

AMAKER LED

If you’re looking for a serious headlamp that’s professional in quality, AMAKER has an option for you to look into. The main thing that puts this headlamp on top is the number of lumens it offers. 90,000 lumens is enough to make you see crystal clear.

You can even switch between 6 different lighting modes, from red safety light to bright light for high visibility. You can also zoom the lighting to focus where you need it to, and you can adjust the head to different angles depending on your situation.

The headlamp is waterproof and damage resistant, so it will last years to come. That means this could quite possibly be the last headlamp you’d ever buy if you decide this is the option for you.

What We Like:

  • High lumen count

What We Don’t Like:

  • Not as adjustable as others

12. Powerful and Heavy-duty

Headlamp USB Rechargeable LED Head Lamp
4,719 Reviews
Headlamp USB Rechargeable LED Head Lamp
This headlamp produces 9,000 lumens of light that are bright enough the illuminate even the darkest campgrounds. It's also a top pick among construction workers who might need to go under buildings.

Headlamp High Lumen Ultra Bright CREE LED Work Headlight

If you need a headlamp that has a lot of power, this work headlight is the option you should be looking at.

This headlamp has enough power to produce 12,000 lumens worth of light, making it a great option if you plan to be in near or totally pitch-black situations.

This headlamp was also made with workmen in mind, so it’s extremely durable. It’s completely waterproof, so you don’t have to worry about the light shorting out or breaking in a rainstorm if you wear it on a fishing trip.

It’s also made out of heavy-duty aluminum and it won’t dent or break even under harsh work site conditions. That means the average camper’s use won’t be a problem for this headlamp to handle.

What We Like:

  • Long battery life

What We Don’t Like:

  • It’s quite big

Final Thoughts

An ideal camping headlamp will offer you the ability to reliably see in the dark. However, depending on your reason for purchasing one, there are other things you should consider.

You can find headlamps that are waterproof, weatherproof, or that can be adjusted to fit a variety of sizes. You can also find headlamps designed for a range of outdoor activities, from running to fishing.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are camping headlamps worth it?

Camping headlamps are worth it if you want to have your hands free while navigating in the dark. Some of the key demographics for headlamps are runners, fishermen, and hikers who might find themselves walking in the dark. A traditional flashlight will likely do if you don’t anticipate needing your hands free.

How bright should a headlamp be for camping?

The brightness of a headlamp will depend on why and where you’ll use it. Headlamps that will be used in the wilderness should offer enough brightness to see in the dark. Headlamps used in areas with interspersed lighting can be dimmer. It’s useful to avoid lights bright enough to be blinding to animals or other people unless they can be dimmed.

How many lights does a headlamp need?

The number of lights a headlamp has doesn’t mean as much as the lumen amount. A headlamp with a single bulb that provides 1,000 lumens of light will likely be more useful than a lamp with multiple bulbs and fewer lumens.

What can I use a camping headlamp for?

A camping headlamp can be used for many outdoor activities. They can help you navigate a campsite or campground in the dark, or they can offer you the ability to run outside at night or before dawn. Essentially, they can be used for any outdoor activity in low light conditions.

About Amar Hussain

Amar is an avid traveler and tester of products. He has spent the last 13 years traveling all 7 continents and has put the products to the test on each of them. He has contributed to publications including Forbes, the Huffington Post, and more.

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