Outdoor Pouf vs Ottoman: Which is Best for Your Backyard?

When you buy from a retailer link on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission at no extra cost to you. Read our affiliate disclaimer here.

When it comes to outdoor seating, there are many options to choose from: sectionals, sofas, lounge chairs, chaise lounges, daybeds… and the list goes on.

 

But have you considered outdoor poufs or outdoor ottomans to fit your patio seating needs?

 

So, which is the best option for your backyard? If you’re stuck trying to decide between an outdoor pouf and ottoman, this blog post is for you!

This is a pinterest pin image of a outdoor pouf and an ottoman.

Summary Table

Category Winner Explanation
Functionality Ottomans Can be used as a table
Comfort Slight edge to Poufs Softer structure
Portability Poufs Generally lighter than ottomans
Style Tie Depends on backyard style needs
Size Tie Poufs can be smaller than ottomans, but depends on backyard needs
Price Slight edge to Poufs No frame materials for poufs can make them cheaper than ottomans

What is a Pouf?

A pouf is a relatively small, round piece of furniture that is often used as an outdoor seat or footstool. They are typically made from outdoor-friendly materials and are usually filled with foam, polyester fiber, or polystyrene (styrofoam) beads, which makes them soft and comfortable to sit on.

Poufs are a great option if you’re looking for outdoor seating that is both versatile and stylish. They can be used as individual seats or placed around a coffee table to create a makeshift outdoor living room. Poufs are also relatively lightweight and easy to move around, so they’re perfect if you like to rearrange your outdoor furniture frequently.

Jaipur Living Asilah Indoor/Outdoor Round Pouf

Jaipur Living Asilah Indoor/ Outdoor Solid Dark Red Round Pouf

What is an Ottoman?

An ottoman is a larger, often rectangular piece of furniture that can be used as a seat, footstool, or table. Like poufs, they are usually filled with polyester fiber or styrofoam beads and upholstered in outdoor-friendly fabric. Unlike poufs, though, ottomans have a solid frame structure that is made from wood, metal, or plastic.

Ottomans are a great option if you’re looking for outdoor furniture that is both functional and stylish. They can be used as a coffee table, footstool, or extra seat when entertaining guests outdoors.

Ashley Grasson Lane Outdoor Ottoman

Ashley Grasson Lane Outdoor Patio Upholstered Ottoman with Wicker Base

Outdoor Ottoman vs Pouf Characteristics Comparison

This comparison focuses on the following key features, which we think are the key features that you should examine when evaluating an ottoman or pouf for your next patio furniture purchase based on hands-on experience using outdoor ottomans and poufs:

 

  • Functionality: What are all the ways you can use an ottoman or pouf?

  • Comfort: Which option is more comfortable?

  • Portability: How easy is it to move a pouf or ottoman?

  • Style: Is an ottoman or pouf more stylish?

  • Size: Which option best fits your size needs?

  • Price: Does an outdoor pouf or ottoman typically have a better price?

Functionality

Winner: Ottomans

 

Reason: Ottomans get the edge here because in some cases they can be used as a table.

While both outdoor poufs and ottomans can be used as seats or footstools, ottomans are simply more versatile thanks to their larger size, rigid structure, and typically flat surface. These characteristics allow you to use an ottoman as a table to hold drinks, food, or other items.

 

On the other hand, the typically smaller size, softer structure, and typically round top of a pouf make it more difficult to reliably use a pouf as a table.

 

So, ottomans score higher on functionality because they can be reliably used as a table.

Comfort

Winner: Slight edge to Poufs

 

Reason: The softer structure of a pouf makes poufs more comfortable. But some may prefer the more firm support of an ottoman.

When it comes to comfort, both outdoor poufs and ottomans are fairly comfortable since they’re typically filled with foam or other soft cushion fill material. We do note, however, that you can find cushionless ottomans if you prefer that look.

 

However, poufs tend to be softer than ottomans because poufs lack the frame that an ottoman has, which makes a pouf very soft and comfortable. You will find many poufs filled with polystyrene (styrofoam) beads and other soft fill materials, making them more comfortable to sit on for long periods.

 

Ottomans, on the other hand, are generally firmer since they’re typically filled with denser foam and made with a solid frame material to give the ottoman a rigid structure.

 

So, if you’re looking for an outdoor seat that you can sink into, a pouf is the better option. However, if you need support in your seating options, then you will definitely need an ottoman.

Portability

Winner: Poufs

 

Reason: Poufs are generally lighter than ottomans.

Poufs are typically smaller and lighter than ottomans, so they’re easier to move around. This makes them a great choice if you like to rearrange your outdoor furniture frequently or if you have a smaller outdoor space.

 

While ottomans are not exactly heavy, they are typically larger and heavier than poufs. So, if you’re looking for outdoor furniture that is easy to move, a pouf is the better option.

Style

Winner: Tie

 

Reason: The right fit for an ottoman or pouf in your backyard will ultimately come down to your individual style.

Both outdoor poufs and ottomans come in a variety of styles, so it really depends on your personal preferences. If you’re looking for something modern and sleek, an outdoor pouf might be the way to go.

 

Or, if you prefer a more traditional look, an outdoor ottoman might be a better fit. But, you can find a pouf or ottoman in nearly any style or color to fit your outdoor needs.

Size

Winner: Tie

 

Reason: Ottomans and poufs can come in a variety of sizes, so it really comes down to your backyard needs.

Outdoor poufs are typically smaller than outdoor ottomans. So, if you have a smaller outdoor space, a pouf might be the better option.

 

However, outdoor ottomans are great if you’re looking for a larger, multi-function piece. So, if you have a larger outdoor space or you need outdoor furniture that can be used as both a seat and a table, an outdoor ottoman is a great choice.

 

When it comes to outdoor poufs vs outdoor ottomans on size, there is no clear winner. It really depends on your personal needs and preferences.

Price

Winner: Slight edge to Poufs

 

Reason: The frame materials of an ottoman can typically make it more expensive than a pouf. 

Outdoor poufs and ottomans are generally priced similarly, with outdoor poufs tending to be slightly less expensive.

 

Why? Poufs are made of only fabric and fill material, like foam. Ottomans, too, have fabric and foam, but they are also made of frame materials like wood, plastic, and metal. This frame material typically makes ottomans more expensive than poufs.

 

So, if you’re looking for outdoor furniture on a budget, a pouf is the better option.

Final Thoughts

Winner: Too Close to Call

 

So, which is the better option for your backyard? It really depends on your personal preferences and needs. If you’re looking for something versatile and stylish, an outdoor pouf might be the way to go. If you prefer something larger and more functional, an outdoor ottoman could be a better choice.

No matter which route you choose, outdoor poufs and ottomans are both great choices for your backyard seating needs!

Hi, I’m Ashley!

I started Live Your Best Backyard to share my hands-on experience and countless hours of research on all things backyard to help you find the best products, ideas, tips, and information for your backyard!

Learn More About Me!

Recent Posts