Best parasols: kit our your garden with the best umbrellas for outside spaces

Investing in the best parasol is essential if you're looking to enjoy a warm summer outside – these picks are stylish and will keep you protected

The best parasol: garden with sunlounger and patio umbrella by john lewis & partners
(Image credit: John Lewis & Partners)

Discover the best parasols in this guide and look forward to a summer spent outside, safe in the knowledge that you're protecting yourself – and your family – from excess exposure to the sun. From light protection to full UV-resistant shade, these umbrellas are up to the task. Plus, many of them make a stylish addition to an outside space.

Whether you're looking for something understated to blend in with the rest of your garden scheme, or want something a little more outspoken and designed to make a statement, you're sure to find something that suits with our pick of the best patio umbrellas.

Jump to find tips on how to buy the best parasol. Then, head over to our garden furniture sales for the chance to make a saving.

  • Head over to our garden hub for more ideas and inspiration for your outside space

What is the best parasol

The best parasol you can buy is the John Lewis & Partners Wood-Effect Wind-Up Parasol. In addition to its stylish design, this model offers an easy wind-up mechanism with a tilt adjustment for selecting the right sun protection. Plus, it's shower-resistant, offers UV50+ and comes with a variety of designs. 

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The best parasols you can buy right now

The best garden parasol: John Lewis & Partners Wood-Effect Wind-Up Parasol

1. John Lewis & Partners Wood-Effect Wind-Up Parasol

Best parasol: in elegant oyster, this sturdy patio umbrella looks good and stands firm

Specifications
Best for: Quality build
Size: Available in H220cm x W220cm x D220cm and H232cm x W270cm x D270cm models
Material: Metal, polyester
Weight: Available in 2.8kg and 3.6kg models
Reasons to buy
+Sturdy design+UPF50 sun protection +Tilt adjustment+Available in a range of sizes and designs
Reasons to avoid
-Some may not enjoy the wood effect design

When it comes to the best patio umbrella, our current top pick is the John Lewis & Partners Wood-Effect Wind-Up Parasol, which offers an easy wind-up mechanism with a tilt adjustment for selecting the right sun protection. 

Plus, it's shower-resistant, offers UV50+ and comes with a variety of different sizes and designs, depending on your preference. 

Shop the full range of patio umbrellas available from John Lewis & Partners

Best square garden parasol: Marks and Spencer Square Parasol

2. Marks and Spencer Square Parasol

Best square parasol: with oodles of sun protection and a wipe-clean finish, this parasol has more to it than meets the eye

Specifications
Best for: UV protection
Size: H253 x W197 x D197cm
Material: Wood, polyester
Weight: 8kg
Reasons to buy
+Wipe-clean fabric +High-level UV protection 
Reasons to avoid
-Square parasol may not be to everyone's taste

This Marks & Spencer Square Parasol isn’t too dissimilar from our first John Lewis pick in that it’s said to be sturdily built, features sustainably sourced wood for extra eco-friendliness, and has the equivalent UV rating of UPF50+ to keep the easily burnt safe from midday sun.

Where it differs is in its handy wipe-clean fabric, a water-repellent polyester that comes in handy when you don’t have the time (or, frankly, the inclination) to stow it in the shed when the heavens open. 

Shop more patio umbrellas available from Marks & Spencer

Best garden parasol with lights: Suntime Adjustable Parasol with Bluetooth Speaker and LED Lights

(Image credit: John Lewis & Partners)

3. Suntime Adjustable Parasol with Bluetooth Speaker and LED Lights

Best parasol with lights: designed with a built-in Bluetooth speaker and LED lights for al fresco entertaining

Specifications
Best for: Entertaining
Size: H270cm x Dia.270cm
Material: Metal
Weight: 5kg
Reasons to buy
+Classic design+Comes with built in Bluetooth speaker and LED lights
Reasons to avoid
-Some may not need additional features

If you enjoy spending your summer evenings entertaining, the Suntime Adjustable Parasol with Bluetooth Speaker and LED Lights could be just what you've been looking for. 

In addition to providing ample protection from the sun, thanks to its adjustable height and tilt mechanisms, this contemporary model comes with built in lights and a Bluetooth speaker system.

Best offset garden parasol: TecTake Aluminium Garden Cantilever Parasol

4. TecTake Aluminium Garden Cantilever Parasol

Best offset parasol: this built-in umbrella is something a little bit different, but it works every angle

Specifications
Best for: Adjustable
Size: H290 x Dia. 350cm
Material: Fabric, metal
Weight: 12.4kg
Reasons to buy
+ Adjustable angle + Lots of coverage 
Reasons to avoid
- Needs anchoring 

It can be difficult enough timing your back-garden soirées with sunny spells, and keeping track of it to make sure no-one in your party ends up burnt or squinting is yet more difficult again. The way to stay one step ahead is with an adjustable patio umbrella like this TecTake Aluminium Garden Cantilever Parasol, which operates on a cantilever to lock at your preferred angle, especially useful when the sun starts to dip.

It’s a good bet for anyone currently redoing a patio or deck, as it does need anchoring in properly, but if you’re after a more permanent fixture, it’s a very practical option. 

Shop more patio umbrellas available from Amazon

Best garden parasol for easy set-up: Miadomodo Garden Umbrella

5. Miadomodo Garden Umbrella

Best parasol for easy set-up: bring some colour to your patio with this great value umbrella

Specifications
Best for: Easy setup
Size: H245cm
Material: Steel, polyester
Weight: 5kg
Reasons to buy
+ Good choice of colours + Easy-to-use crank handle 
Reasons to avoid
-Won't be to everyone's taste

Neutrals and nautical not really for you? Get firmly stuck into the jewel tones trend with one of these colourful Miadomodo Garden Umbrellas.

The water-repellent polyester fabric makes it a practical option for anywhere that gets sudden showers, and reviewers found it showed no signs of mildew after being left out, although they did recommend stowing it away over winter to guard against rotting. The crank handle set into the thick steel pipe makes it simple to put up and down without faffing with cords, too. 

How to buy the best parasol

When it comes to buying a parasol to suit your needs, there are a few factors we'd recommend taking into account. These include:

How large is your garden?

Before you start shopping, take a look at the space your umbrella is destined for to ensure there’s clearance around any roof overhangs or awnings, and most crucially, that it’s not in danger of spontaneous combustion courtesy of a too-close barbecue.

How large is your table?

You should also consider the size of your table and choose accordingly. Roughly speaking, you’re looking at a 2m to 3m umbrella for a table 75cm to 90cm in diameter, 3m to 4m for a 95cm to 1.2m table, and 3.5m or larger for a 1.35m to 1.5m table.

Tilt adjustment

As we all know, the sun doesn't tend to shine from directly above. If you tend to get hit from an angle, or want to be able to adjust the positioning of your umbrella as the sun moves through the sky, it's worth investing in an option with tilt adjustment. 

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