The 8 Best Solar String Lights of 2021

For all the eco-friendly glow getters

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The Rundown
"Four lighting modes and USB charging ability put these solar string lights at the top of our list."
"The price point for these lights is great, without sacrificing useful features."
"Create some magic to your garden with these fairy lights from DeVida."
"These mini string lights feature a dual-mode button that allow you to choose to have the lights flash or shine steady."
"Vintage Edison bulbs create a classic and tasteful look for any setting."
"These multicolored lights create a fairytale aesthetic and add a bit of whimsy to any outdoor space."
"Time travel back to your childhood with these multicolor lights."
"Eight different light modes also allow you to set the lights to twinkle, flash, fade, or steadily glow."

Do you want to spruce up your backyard oasis, patio, or even apartment balcony? String lights can add a festive twinkle to your space that’s perfect for romantic alfresco dinners, a relaxing outdoor happy hour, or holiday decorations. However, traditional string lights require being plugged in, which increases your electric bill and can contribute to planet-heating pollution unless your home is already powered by renewables. 

Solar string lights run on energy from the sun and are handy if you don’t have an outdoor outlet available. Just make sure the charging panel is in a location that gets plenty of sun, and as darkness creeps in, watch as your outdoor space comes to life with light. 

Here are the best solar string lights:

Best Overall: MagicPro Solar String Lights

MagicPro Solar String Lights

These solar string lights at the top of our list thanks to four lighting modes and USB charging ability. Spice up any gathering with slow flash, quick flash, pulsating, or steady light modes and rest easy knowing the set is waterproof and the bulbs are shatterproof. 

The lights can illuminate for up to 8 hours with a full charge (the solar panel requires a six to eight hour charge), and hold up well in different weather conditions. The warm white lights provide a cozy glow for birthday parties, wedding receptions, garden parties, and much more. This set allows you to connect 15 more bulbs if you want to illuminate a larger area.

Best Budget: Brightown 29 Feet Solar String Lights

Brightown 29 Feet Solar String Lights

The price point for these lights is great, without sacrificing useful features. The lights are made of a shatterproof material that’s also IP44 waterproof and can withstand hot and cold temperatures, rain, and wind. The lights can stay lit for up to 16 hours after 4 to 8 hours of solar charging, and the 180-degree adjustable panel allows you to move it around for maximum sun exposure. 

These lights can also be charged via USB if there’s no light during the day. The lights have four lighting modes, and the bulbs on this strand are spaced 1 foot apart for a total of 29 feet. You also don’t have to worry about the bulbs getting too hot, as they remain cool to the touch after hours of use.

Best Fairy Lights: DeVida Solar LED Fairy Lights

DeVida Solar LED Fairy Lights

Make trees sparkle, add a twinkle to your tent while camping, or create some magic to your garden with these fairy lights from DeVida. These lights feature a 55-foot strand with 120 LED lights, plus an extra-long lead wire to position the solar panel in the sun and out of the shade. 

The extra length also means you can wrap trees and still have enough room to move the solar panel into optimal sunlight. DeVida delivers a quality product that is backed behind a family-owned U.S. company that donates a portion of net proceeds to charities.

Best Mini Bulbs: Sol 72 Outdoor Santorini Solar-Powered LED Mini String Light

Sol 72 Outdoor Solar Powered String Lights

Available in multiple colors, these mini string lights come with a panel and a solar rechargeable battery. Simply stake the panel into the ground (or mount on a wall) and allow the panel to get six to eight hours of full, direct sunlight. The lights will glow for seven to eight hours, creating the perfect environment for parties or simple outdoor dinners. 

The lights also feature a dual-mode button that allow you to choose to have the lights flash or shine steady. Don’t worry about wet weather, as the lights will still twinkle despite rainy conditions.

Best Vintage Look: Brightech Ambience Pro Solar 27 Ft Edison Bulb Outdoor String Lights

Brightech Ambience Pro Solar 27 Ft Edison Bulb Outdoor String Lights

Vintage Edison bulbs create a classic and tasteful look for any setting. These lights from Brightech last five to six hours on a full charge (six hours of direct sunlight) and shine a bit brighter than traditional solar lights. Twelve bulbs are spaced 20 inches apart, and the bulbs should last 20,000 hours before replacement. 

The shatterproof bulbs also can withstand winds up to 50 miles per hour, plus rain, and extreme heat. An additional 6-foot wire connecting to the solar panel allows you to place it in a sunny place for best charging. Brightech offers a three-year product warranty and will send replacement parts or a new product if problems arise.

Most Colorful: Lemontec Solar String Lights

Lemontec Solar String Lights

These multicolored lights create a fairytale aesthetic and add a bit of whimsy to any outdoor space. The water droplet shape also adds an element of fun and creates an Alice-in-Wonderland-meets-mad-scientist’s-lab vibe. 

A built-in sensor switches the lights on at night and off during the day while charging, and the lights can shift from colorful to warm white with the touch of a button. Don’t worry about wet weather, you can leave these lights outside and they’ll be fine after a rainstorm. These are perfect for night-time swims, groovy garden parties, children’s birthday parties, and even seasonal holiday decorating.

Best Festive: Qedertek Fairy Blossom Solar Flower Garden Lights

Qedertek Garden Solar String Lights

Time travel back to your childhood with these multicolor lights that are reminiscent of vintage multicolor holiday lights and all things Lisa Frank. The lights need to charge during the day for six to eight hours, but will illuminate for more than eight hours at night. Fifty flower lights dance across a 21-foot strand, providing light that’s also waterproof and can withstand heavy rain and snow. 

Two switches on the set allow lights to either flash or shine steady. Users love these lights for indoor and outdoor uses—they’re perfect for little girls’ bedrooms, dreamy gardens, and anywhere you want to add a touch of color.

Best for Holidays: Supsoo Solar Christmas Lights

Supsoo Solar Christmas Lights

Available in an array of colors, these solar lights from Supsoo help to create a magical holiday scene. Choose from warm white, green, blue, cool white, or multicolored lights that are perfect for decorating an outdoor Christmas tree, wrapping around the exterior of your house, and using throughout your holiday decor. 

Eight different light modes also allow you to set the lights to twinkle, flash, fade, or steadily glow. On a full charge, the lights can shine for as long as 12 hours. The lead cable is also six feet long, allowing you to place the panel in the sunniest location for maximum charging. The set is also waterproof, so rest easy if there’s bad weather.

Final Verdict

The MagicPro string lights (view at Amazon) offer a classic look, plus additional lighting modes and the ability to charge via USB, which gives them a leg up from many traditional, white solar lights.

If you want something more festive, consider the Lemontec water droplet lights (view at Amazon), with their fun look and multicolored lights.

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Author Amanda Ogle is a veteran reporter who loves writing about sustainability and believes it is important that we all strive to be as environmentally friendly as we can. She loves educating consumers on sustainable products and the importance of knowing what they’re buying.