Space is always at a premium in a tiny house. One question we get a lot from prospective tiny dwellers is how to store seasonal clothes in a way that doesn’t completely take over your home.
Today we’re digging into some of the top vacuum storage bags available to find the best storage bags for tiny homes, van life, and RV dwellers. We’ll cover what goes into an excellent vacuum storage bag and give a breakdown of the different options on the market.
- SpaceSaver Premium Vacuum Storage Bags: Overall Best Vacuum Storage Bags for Tiny Homes – Link
- Ziploc Space Bag: Runner-Up Best Vacuum Storage Bags for Tiny Homes – Link
- Cozy Essentials Vacuum Storage Bags: Best Value Vacuum Storage Bags for Tiny Homes – Link
- Storage Master Vacuum Storage Bags: Toughest Vacuum Storage Bags for Tiny Homes – Link
- Taili Hanging Space Saving Storage Bag: Best Hanging Vacuum Storage Bags for Tiny Homes – Link
At first glance, most vacuum storage bags may seem identical to one another. Looks can be deceiving, though. Read on to learn the strengths and weaknesses of our top 5 picks and learn more about the best vacuum storage bags for tiny homes.
1. SpaceSaver Premium Vacuum Storage Bags: Overall Best Vacuum Storage Bags for Tiny Homes – Link
SpaceSaver created the vacuum storage bag market and is still a powerhouse in the space. The Original SpaceSaver Premium Vacuum Storage Bags maintain the focus on high-quality manufacturing and customer satisfaction that helped make the company famous when it first released its bags.
The SpaceSaver bags are available in four different sizes ranging from small bags able to hold 6-8 sweaters all the way up to jumbo bags massive enough to fit four full-size pillows or a queen bedding set. Each bag uses a double zip-top style seal that feels a bit sturdier and easier to zip than many of those found in its competitors.
SpaceSaver shows its expertise in seemingly small design touches that greatly impact functionality. SpaceSaver went with a triple-seal valve design that lets you get every last bit of air out of your bags. We weren’t convinced just from the marketing materials, but once we compared multiple bags filled with the same garments the SpaceSaver bags actually were an inch or two thinner and visibly more tightly vacuumed.
The valve also makes it easier to close once you’ve vacuumed out the air and rests more flush with the bag when sealed. That makes it much easier to store multiple bags together in any small space you can find in your tiny home.
One thing that helped SpaceSaver edge out the competition for the top spot was its industry-leading lifetime replacement policy. If your SpaceSaver bags ever stop sealing properly you can send them off for a free replacement. SpaceSaver has shown over decades that they stand by their products and are always willing to make any issues right.
All in all, SpaceSaver offered the best mix of durability, usability, bag longevity, and raw effectiveness of any of the vacuum storage bags we tested. If you’re looking to maximize the storage space in your tiny home or van, SpaceSaver Premium Vacuum Storage Bags are the best way to do it. They’re also very nearly the most affordable vacuum storage bags on the market.
Like SpaceSaver’s bags but don’t want to mess around with a hand pump or vacuum? Check out their fabulous Roll-Up Storage Bags. They don’t get quite as compressed as the vacuum ones, but they’re incredibly user-friendly and don’t require any additional tools.
- Available in a wide range of sizes and configurations
- Designed to be as durable and reusable as possible
- Includes a travel hand pump
- Triple-seal valve design allows you to get more air out of the bag than with most vacuum bags
- Better price on a per bag basis than any but our value pick bags
- Would prefer to see a slide-lock zip system
2. Ziploc Space Bags: Runner-Up Best Vacuum Storage Bags for Tiny Homes – Link
The Ziploc Space Bags are Ziploc’s answer to the popular SpaceSaver bags. The Space Bags take Ziploc’s decades of experience in the zip-top bag market and apply it to the problem of vacuum storage bags.
At first glance, you’d be forgiven for thinking the Space Bags were just comically oversized Ziploc freezer bags. They felt slightly thicker than standard Ziploc bags but were a bit thinner than many other bags we tested. Each bag measured 10” x 30” and could hold around 8-12 articles of clothing, depending on the size and fabric.
Each pack comes with four Space Bags plus a handy fabric tote. The tote adds an extra layer of protection and can hold all four Space Bags after fully compressing them. It was a pleasant little extra that made using and storing the Ziploc bags easier than others on our list.
Where the Ziploc Space Bag truly shines is in its seal and slide-lock. The Ziploc-brand slide zip is easier to use than every other option we tested. It makes sense given that Ziploc has dominated the zip-top bag market since its creation.
If you’re looking for a solid vacuum storage bag for your tiny home at a very reasonable price, look no further than the Ziploc Space Bags.
Don’t have a vacuum? Ziploc also makes Roll-Up Travel Space Bags sized to fit in either checked or carry-on bags.
- Provides up to 3X the storage space compared to uncompressed clothes
- Ziploc expertise shows in high-quality and easy-to-use seal
- Includes fabric tote that fits all four Space Bags when compressed
- Vacuum valve lays flatter against the bag than most competitors
- Great bang for your buck
- Bags felt a bit thinner than many other vacuum storage bags
3. Cozy Essentials Vacuum Storage Bags: Best Value Vacuum Storage Bags for Tiny Homes – Link
Cozy Essentials make a range of quality home storage goods at downright ludicrously affordable prices. You can pick up a 25-bag variety pack of Cozy Essentials Vacuum Storage Bags for less than the price of a four-pack of our top-ranked storage bags.
The pack includes:
- Five Jumbo Bags
- Five Large Bags
- Five Medium Bags
- Five Small Bags
- Five Travel Roll-Up Bags
That’s enough storage bags to store a truly vast amount of clothing and bedding. One pack of Cozy Essentials Storage Bags will easily hold anything the average tiny home dweller needs to store, with bags left over as backups.
The bags themselves are surprisingly durable and easy to use. They’re not as thick or nice as our top-ranked SpaceSaver Bags, nor as easy to seal up as our number two pick Ziploc Space bags, but for the price, it’s hard to argue that they aren’t still a great deal.
Overall the Cozy Essentials bags weren’t quite as nice or durable as our top-ranked bags but still work fine and provide a ton of value for their price point.
- Best bang for your buck on quality vacuum storage bags
- Reduces clothing size by up to 80%
- Triple-Seal vacuum valve helps you remove a substantial amount of air quickly
- Bags aren’t quite as thick or durable as our top-ranked picks
- Vacuum cap is harder to get on once vacuumed than our number one pick
4. Storage Master Vacuum Storage Bags: Toughest Vacuum Storage Bags for Tiny Homes – Link
If you’re worried about your vacuum storage bags getting punctured, then the Storage Master Vacuum Storage Bags are the way to go. They’re made from 30% thicker plastic than most other storage bags for added durability and lifespan.
When we first opened the Storage Master Bags, we assumed their durability claims would be just hype. We were pleasantly surprised to discover that these bags were noticeably thicker than most of the other bags we tested and felt sturdier and more resistant to damage.
Durability might not be as big a deal for a traditional home, but in a tiny home, you never know where your seasonal clothing storage will end up. Having bags that can handle being jostled, jabbed, or scraped is a major plus in our books.
As a bonus, the Storage Master Bags were noticeably more affordable than our top-ranked bags. They couldn’t quite reach the price point of our value pick, but overall the Storage Master Vacuum Storage Bags are still excellent storage bags for a tiny home.
- Made from noticeably thicker plastic than many other brands we reviewed
- More affordable than our top ranked vacuum storage bags
- Slide lock zip top system makes sealing the bags quick and easy
- Includes a hand pump if you don’t have a vacuum cleaner
- Vacuum valve sits slightly but noticeably higher off the bag than the best vacuum storage bags
5. Taili Hanging Space Saving Storage Bag: Best Hanging Vacuum Storage Bags for Tiny Homes – Link
Not all clothes fold nicely or even should fold at all. If you need to store dress shirts, suits, dresses, or other clothing items you would usually hang the Taili Hanging Space Saving Storage Bags are one of the best options.
The Taili Bags come in two sizes designed for standard suit jacket length garments and longer coats and dresses. The suit-size bags can hold 4-6 jackets, shirts, or similarly sized garments, while the dress and coat bags can hold up to eight dresses or 4-6 full-length coats.
The bags are made from thick and durable multi-layer plastic available in either clear plastic or a blue wave pattern. Even better, Taili went with a two-part seal that uses a slide lock design to make sealing and unsealing your bags much more intuitive.
Taili claims you can reduce the size of your stored garments by up to 80%. Our testing found that to be a pretty accurate statement for most garment types. Suit jackets and other highly-structured clothing didn’t shrink as much as softer clothes, but the Taili Bags still cut the total size by at least half.
We also liked the rotating hanger attachment Taili went with for the top. It has five rings for hangers and allows you to easily spin the bag around to see where within it a specific garment is or to inspect your clothes for any issues while storing.
If your wardrobe includes a lot of sun dresses, coats, or other items you usually hang, the Taili Hanging Space Saving Storage Bags are an excellent way to store them seasonally without the risk of fold lines or wrinkles setting in.
- Allows you to compress and store suits, jackets, dress shirts, and other hanging items without having to fold them
- Reduces the required space per garment in your closet by up to 80%
- Great for storing puffer coats, heavy suit jackets, and other puffy winter clothes
- Doesn’t hold as many items of clothing per bag compared to flat bags
- Bags are significantly larger than standard compression bags
- Requires hangers and a closet bar
Vacuum Storage Bag Buying Guide
Comparing vacuum storage bags comes down to a few critical factors. The most important are capacity, intended purpose, ease of use, seal strength, and durability.
Vacuum storage bags come in a wide range of sizes and shapes. You can store everything from a few pairs of socks up to king-size comforters depending on the size and capacity of your chosen bags.
Picking one storage bag size, usually medium or large, and sticking with it for all your storage needs generally works best for a tiny home. Having only a single bag size makes it easier to stack and store your clothes and sheets in as compact a location as possible.
That said, everyone’s home and storage situation is different, so consider what you’re trying to store, where it needs to fit, and how much total stuff you’ve got to store.
One important caveat is how you intend to vacuum your bags. If you don’t have a vacuum cleaner that can interface with a storage bag, we recommend you stick with smaller bags. Take it from us, trying to pump all the air out of a 48” x 36” bag full of shirts and sweaters with a hand pump is not a fun experience.
Vacuum storage bags designed for repeated use season after season have significantly different design features than storage bags meant to store things a single time. Vacuum storage bags meant for long-term storage are remarkable for their intended purpose. They can get absolutely minuscule when vacuumed but often aren’t able to repeatedly unseal and reseal.
If you plan to do any traveling outside your tiny home where you would need to frequently (here meaning more than once in a week or two) open and reseal your storage bag, a set with a lightweight travel pump is a good idea. If you’re only looking to store your winter clothes through spring and summer, one with a heavier-duty seal designed to connect to your home vacuum is a better option.
Ease of Use
Vacuum storage bags are a fantastic way to amp up your storage game between seasons. Unfortunately, some can be a serious pain to use for their intended purpose.
There are two main methods of vacuum storage bags, vacuum seal and roll-up, and several other usability features that can make them easier or more troublesome to use.
Vacuum seal bags rely on a vacuum cleaner or a hand pump to remove air from sealed bags. They’re arguably superior in terms of air removal and ability to compress your clothes. Still, they require you to either have a vacuum or keep a small pump handy and tend to take longer to vacuum down fully.
Roll-up bags, by comparison, are faster, more intuitive, and don’t require any additional tools. Once your clothes are inside and the bag is sealed you roll from the bottom and squeeze out as much air as you can. They get quite a bit smaller than before you roll them, but not quite as compressed as with a vacuum.
Consider whether you prioritize the maximum reduction in size or time-of-storage ease of use.
Seal Type and Strength
The durability of the plastic itself isn’t the only thing you should consider when looking at storage bags. The type of seal used, how many there are, and how well they stay sealed play a considerable role in usefulness and lifespan.
Most storage bags use zip-top style seals with either a press-and-seal or slide-lock mechanism. The best vacuum storage bags take a double approach, with two independently zipped closures to offer maximum seal strength.
In our testing, we found the slide-lock style of zip-top the easiest to get a solid seal with. The press-and-seal style offered an equally strong seal but generally took at least two or three tries to get both strips properly sealed. With the slide-lock style, we were able to get a solid seal on the first try on virtually every attempt.
A leaky vacuum storage bag is about as practical as a screen door on a submarine. Vacuum storage bags for tiny homes require durable materials that can handle moving about a good bit and resist punctures or abrasions.
The best ones use thick plastic that can take a licking and keep on ticking. Where you should concentrate on quality are the most common points of failure, including:
We looked for overbuilt double seals to be extra sturdy and long-lasting. For valves, we focused on the seal around the edges of the valve and whether they used a screw-top or flip-open cap. Screw-top is better so long as the lid has a gasket seal, but flip-open still works well in most circumstances.
Think about how much you plan to seal and unseal your bags and consider whether the manufacturer offers a warranty and what the terms are. Some will replace leaky bags at no charge for a year or more after purchase, while others offer a comprehensive lifetime warranty.