Summer is here and we can’t wait. But before you think of all that fun in the sun, you best be prepared to protect your skin from getting too much exposure from the harmful UV rays of the sun. Enter the beach umbrella. Now, we’ve all been there. The umbrella won’t open or stay open. Or, it won’t stand up straight in the sand. Or you found yourself chasing a runaway umbrella all the way to the parking lot. Obviously, you don’t want to go down that route again which is why we decided to create this list of the best beach umbrellas. That way, you’ll never be out of the shade when you need it.
Top 9 Beach Umbrellas of 2018 Reviewed
- Top 9 Beach Umbrellas of 2018 Reviewed
- 1. Sport-Brella X-Large Umbrella
- 2. Tommy Bahama Sand Anchor 7 feet Beach Umbrella
- 3. beachBUB All-In-One Beach Umbrella System
- 4. Frankford Umbrellas 7.5’ Concession Grade Beach Umbrella
- 5. EasyGo HEAVY DUTY Beach Umbrella
- 6. Shadezilla Rainbow 8′ Beach Umbrella
- 7. Rio Brands 6′ Sunshade Umbrella
- 8. AosKe Portable Sun Shade Umbrella
- 9. Ammsun 6.5 ft Outdoor Patio Beach Umbrella
- Beach Umbrella Buying Guide
1. Sport-Brella X-Large UmbrellaBeach Umbrella For The Money
This is a great way to create a cozy shade for two or more. It’s not a tent or a canopy, it’s a Sport-Brella. It provides you and your family with a whole lot of shade that has UPF 50+ maximum sun protection which prevents 99.95% of UVA/UVB rays from reaching your precious skin. But that’s not all. This beach umbrella features large inner pockets, side panel zippered windows, tent flaps on the side for even more protection and privacy, and a bag to carry them all in. You also get stakes, sandbags, and tie-down cords to make sure that it stays where you put it. The canopy is constructed out of water-repelling 210 D Polyester for all-weather protection. It’s also quite easy to set up despite its complicated appearance.
The problem is getting it back in the bag. Also, it doesn’t work well in windy weather. You’ll need to buy one of those specialized anchors.
- Easy to set up
- Inner pockets for storage
- UPF 50+ protection
- Does not do well in windy weather
- Hard to put back into the bag
- Center pole feels flimsy
2. Tommy Bahama Sand Anchor 7 feet Beach UmbrellaBeach Umbrella For Sun Protection
This is a really eye-catching attractive beach umbrella but that’s not why we love it. The Tommy Bahama Sand Anchor Beach Umbrella features an integrated corkscrew sand anchor, a special aluminum undercoating that increases the umbrella’s sun protection to a 100 UPF rating, a special tilt mechanism, a wind vent, and a carrying case. What do all of these mean? To put it simply, this umbrella is easy to set up, can stay upright, keep you cool, and provide you with 100% protection from the sun’s harmful UVA and UVB rays. At 4.6 pounds, this umbrella is big enough to provide shade for more than two people but lightweight enough that you only need one person to lug it around.
While we do love this umbrella a lot, we must admit that it isn’t too great when there’s a moderate breeze. You’ll have to stick it really deep in the sand to prevent it from running away from you. Also, the anchor handles are at the bottom which makes setting this up a bit awkward. And if you like to nitpick, some users have received a carry bag that had a different design from the umbrella.
- Beautiful designs
- 100 UPF rating
- Integrated sand anchor
- Not for windy days
- Anchor handles at the bottom
- Carry bag may have different design
3. beachBUB All-In-One Beach Umbrella SystemBeach Umbrella For Windy Days
Incredibly expensive, yes, but definitely worth it. This beach umbrella from beachBUB is a crowd favorite because it there’s no need to dig deep just to twist the umbrella into the sand. Just fill the base with sand and you’re good to go. Wind? No worries. This umbrella was tested to 35MPH winds and came outstanding. The canopy frame features commercial grade fiberglass ribs and rib connectors as well as independent double-lined rib pockets sewn to the canopy.
To help with the setup, the manufacturer includes a shovel and a wrench This all-in-one umbrella even comes with its own an insurance program – the beachBUB ™ 3-year PROTECTION PLAN. If you lose it or break it, the company will be replacing it at no extra cost. There are, of course, some drawbacks to this umbrella. It does not have an adjustable height and lacks a tilt mechanism. Also, it weighs 9lbs.
- No need to screw the umbrella into the sand
- Can handle windy days
- Commercial grade canopy frame
- Very expensive
- Height is not adjustable
- No tilt mechanism
4. Frankford Umbrellas 7.5’ Concession Grade Beach UmbrellaQuality Beach Umbrella
If money is no object and you want to invest in a long-term beach umbrella, then the Frankford Umbrellas Concession Grade Beach Umbrella is just the thing. It features a solid ash wood pole, marine grade acrylic fabric with a 50+ UPF rating, stainless steel joints and rivets, and 5mm zinc-plated steel ribs. This umbrella doesn’t feature a vent because it doesn’t need one. It can definitely handle strong winds easily. Set up is a breeze, even when there is one.
It’s hard to dislike a beach umbrella that ticks all of the checkboxes. There are slight negatives, of course. It’s incredibly expensive. It does not have a tilt mechanism and its pretty heavy. It is commercial grade, after all.
- Commercial grade construction
- Can withstand strong wind
- 19 design options
- Most expensive on our list
- No tilt feature
5. EasyGo HEAVY DUTY Beach UmbrellaBeach Umbrella Heavy Duty
This is another heavy duty option for a beach umbrella but for a third of the price of our previous pick. This umbrella features an anodized aluminum pole with fiberglass ribs and spreaders, a vented rainbow canopy made out of weatherproof polyester, a screw base auger, and a self-tightening self-latch. The pole system allows you to easily adjust the height of the umbrella or tilt it to provide you shade no matter where the sun may be.
The umbrella also has extra UV protection through the silver UV coating under the canopy. The umbrella is huge, enough to shade three people and their chairs. The screw stake is heavy duty and features a screw handle to make digging it into the ground an easy task for anyone. And if you don’t like the product, you have the option of returning it for a complete refund as long as you do it within 30 days of your purchase.
One drawback with this beach umbrella is that the small metal parts like the chain, spring, and the screw that holds the clamp rust after a few uses at the beach. Also, the colors do fade a bit faster compared to other picks and the carry bag isn’t the sturdiest we’ve seen.
- Huge shade
- Easy to set up
- 100% money back guarantee if returned within 30 days
- Small metal parts tend to rust
- Colors fade quickly
- Carry bag gets torn easily
6. Shadezilla Rainbow 8′ Beach UmbrellaDurable Beach Umbrella
This huge beach umbrella features a Teflon coated weatherproof polyester cover with vented canopy a rust-free, dull anodized aluminum pole; 16 fiberglass ribs; and a 3-direction adjustable metal tilt. This umbrella not only looks good, it makes you feel good too. It provides you with a lot of shade, enough to keep you, your companions (up to 3 people), and your cooler out of the sun with a UPF of 50+. Despite its size, this rainbow sunshade is lightweight at only 5.5 lbs. Staking it into the sand can be a bit difficult but it does stay there even during strong winds. Plus, the pole is so long that you can stick it in deep and not bend over just to get under the umbrella.
Only a few negatives to take note of with this baby. The latch at the top is a bit hard to disengage and packing it in the carry bag isn’t as easy as it looks in the pictures. Also, the umbrella is pretty long and may not fit so easily in your trunk.
- Heavy duty
- Very pretty
- Lots of shade (good for 3 people)
- May not fit in your car’s trunk
- Packing it into the bag isn’t a breeze
- Slightly more expensive than other umbrellas of this kind
7. Rio Brands 6′ Sunshade UmbrellaInexpensive Beach Umbrella
For those with a limited budget, you can still enjoy good sun protection with a decent, very basic umbrella which is what the Rio Sunshade Umbrella is all about. The colors (it comes in three designs) are cute and easy to spot in a sea of beach umbrellas. It has aluminum undercoating to provide you with sun protection (SPF 100+). It has a powder-coated tilt steel pole and the canopy is made out of 300 denier polyester fabric. The pole’s height is adjustable. You also get a carry bag for this umbrella which is already a steal at this price.
Take note, this is designed for light use only so if you want something more heavy duty that will withstand regular use at the beach, you’ll need to buy something else. But for a short trip down to the beach, it’ll be worth more than your money. Also, you will need to buy a sand anchor to make sure that this stays in place when it gets really windy out. Last but not the least, this umbrella can only shade one person so you may have to buy more than just one.
- Very, very affordable
- Decent quality
- Can only shade one person
- A bit hard to stake into the ground
- Will not hold up for regular beach use or windy days
8. AosKe Portable Sun Shade Umbrella
This beautiful umbrella is made out of breathable polyester with an inner layer of vinyl material that blocks the heat and harmful UV rays from reaching you. It features a tilt mechanism that allows you to shade yourself without having to reposition the entire umbrella. It’s easy as hell to set up, just step on the pointed prong anchor to dig it into the ground. This type of anchor makes it more stable as well. The poles are made out of aluminum so it’s rust resistant and light. The poles unscrew at the middle so it’s much easier to carry and takes up smaller space in storage. The umbrella also comes with extra plastic spikes for windy days.
However, it is short so you won’t be able to stand underneath the umbrella. Also, it can fit no more than two average-sized people. More importantly, it doesn’t come with instructions so you will need time to figure it out.
- Awesome tilt mechanism
- Beautiful color
- Short pole
- Only good for 2 people
- No instructions included
9. Ammsun 6.5 ft Outdoor Patio Beach Umbrella
This beach umbrella caught our eye, literally, because of its beautiful stripes but we ended up loving it for more than that. It’s made out of 210D Oxford fabric with UPF 50+ special aluminum undercoating, 8 steel ribs, and a plastic tilt. The canopy has an air-vented design to allow for more airflow in order to increase stability. The pole is extra thick steel and is height-adjustable.
Don’t let the price fool you into thinking that this is a cheaply made umbrella. It is quite sturdy even on windy days, you just have to screw it down deep and use an anchor.
- Very affordable
- Heavy duty
- Bright and colorful, easy to spot
- Requires an anchor to make it more stable during windy days
- Not for more than 2 people
- The carry bag may not be as sturdy
Beach Umbrella Buying Guide
Spending time outdoors requires you to get decent (if not awesome) sun protection. It’s also great if you can find a way to cool off in the shade. Thank you, beach umbrella. Unfortunately, not all beach umbrellas are made equal as you probably already found out. To make sure you don’t end up with a dud of an umbrella during an outing at the beach (you are there to enjoy yourself, right?), we wrote a short guide to help you sort out the bad from the good.
Why do you need a beach umbrella? Yes, it seems like a stupid question to ask. To give you shade, of course! And to keep you from getting sunburned. But that’s not all your beach umbrella should do. You will need to make sure that the umbrella can provide you with protection from harmful UV (ultraviolet) rays. Also, you want to get those that offer a UPF 30 rating (ultraviolet protection factor) at the very least such as the Sport-Brella X-Large Umbrella. Finally, you want to make sure that your umbrella is pretty easy to spot, especially in a crowded sea of beach umbrellas. Some of our picks offer really vibrant colors that you’ll see from far away from such as the Tommy Bahama Sand Anchor 7 feet Beach Umbrella and the Ammsun 6.5 ft Outdoor Patio Beach Umbrella.
Aside from UV protection and aesthetics, you’ll also need to make sure that your umbrella has durable fabric construction and overall sturdiness. You will be exposing it to the elements, possibly including gusty winds. The fabric should be able to deflect sun rays and the entire umbrella should be able to survive windy days. You don’t want to end up running after it or taking the chance that it might hit someone. Some considerations you can look at include air ventilation (allows increased airflow for better stability), thick poles, and a high number of ribs. Fiberglass ribs are generally stronger than steel ribs.
What do we mean, the place? Well, beach umbrellas are not only great for the beach, you know. Some of them also work well in gardens and soccer fields. If you want a beach umbrella that will serve more than one location, you’ll need to make sure it’s easy to set up anywhere. The AosKe Portable Sun Shade Umbrella, for example, is good in sand but does, even more, on the grass. Just ask the soccer fans.
How many people are you planning to fit under the umbrella? Those that are 6 to 7 feet in diameter are great for shading two people comfortably. Those that have a 7 1/2 foot diameter can comfortably cover 4 people seated upright or two people in loungers. An 8-9 foot umbrella is the largest you’ll find in the market and can comfortable shade 6 to 8 people on beach towels. Keep in mind that the larger an umbrella is, the heavier it will be.
The Extra Features
Wouldn’t it be great if you didn’t have to adjust the entire umbrella every time the wind direction changes or the sun moves? If you want the ultimate convenience, you’ll need to look for an umbrella with a tilt mechanism such as the EasyGo HEAVY DUTY Beach Umbrella.
What about built-in anchors? Some umbrellas like the Tommy Bahama Sand Anchor 7 feet Beach Umbrella feature a pole that has retractable handles and a screw-like bottom that you can drill into the sand. It sort of looks like a corkscrew and makes it easier for you to dig it deep. However, it may not be the best thing for rocky or hard sand beaches.
If you’ve read up on beach umbrellas or at least their reviews, you probably read someone talks about whether an umbrella has telescopic poles. What this feature means is that the umbrella is made out of two poles that fit together and allows you to adjust the height of the umbrella. The Rio Brands 6′ Sunshade Umbrella is one good example of a telescopic umbrella.