The 7 Best Artificial Christmas Trees for Your Home
By Corrie Pelc
Growing up, my father was the captain of Team Real Tree. Every year, he couldn’t wait to bundle us all up and go down to this favorite Christmas tree lot to pick out the perfect tree. He loved the scent of fresh evergreen every morning in the living room and how beautiful it looked all twinkly-lighted and decorated.
My mother, on the other hand, was strictly Team Fake Tree. She hated the constant trickle of pine needles she’d need to vacuum, the need to keep it watered, and cleaning up the mess my father would leave when it was time to dispose of the tree.
By my teenage years, both my parents were fully on board with an artificial Christmas tree. Not only are they easier to maintain and put up and down each year, but they are also more economical in the long run. And nowadays, artificial Christmas trees are even easier to assemble as many come with the holiday lights already built into them, plus plenty of other perks.
So what artificial Christmas trees are the best? We’re glad you asked because we’ve got the answers in this guide!
Best Pre-Lit Artificial Christmas Tree: National Tree Company Dunhill Fir Artificial Christmas TreeA pre-lit artificial Christmas tree whose LED lights offer 10 different color patterns controlled through a foot pedal.
Best Unlit Artificial Christmas Tree: Best Choice Products Premium Spruce Artificial TreeA traditional unlit fake Christmas tree that can be decorated however you’d like.
Most Realistic Artificial Christmas Tree: Balsam Hill 7ft Premium Pre-Lit Artificial TreeOne of the most realistic artificial Christmas trees you can find on the market today.
Best Flocked Artificial Christmas Tree: Best Choice Products Snow Flocked Christmas TreeEasily turn your living room or family room into a winter wonderland with this flocked artificial Christmas tree.
Best White Artificial Christmas Tree: National Tree Company Pre-lit Artificial Christmas TreeA truly magical white artificial Christmas tree flocked with silver glitter.
Best Artificial Christmas Tree for Small Spaces: National Tree Company Kingswood FirAn artificial Christmas tree with a slim profile for tight spots.
Best Mini Artificial Christmas Tree: National Tree Company Pre-lit Artificial Mini TreeA pint-sized artificial Christmas tree that packs a huge holiday decorating punch.
How to Buy an Artificial Christmas Tree
With literally hundreds of choices to choose from, how can you figure out the best artificial Christmas tree to buy for your home? Here are some questions to ask yourself:
- What Size and Shape Do You Need? Fake Christmas trees come in every size and shape you can imagine, from tiny little tabletop ones to towering mega trees. In general, the most popular size for an artificial Christmas tree is around 7.5-feet tall, as the standard home ceiling height is about eight feet. As for shape, today's fake Christmas trees range from super-thin styles to full trees that look like they were just plucked out of the forest. Take a hard look at your space — and what's already in it that you can't move — to figure out what size and shape work best for you.
- What Color Do You Want? Artificial Christmas trees come in a multitude of shades of green, plus white, blue, and honestly pretty much any color you can think of. Consider the colors in the room where you'll be placing the tree, as well as the decorating color scheme you're going for when deciding on a shade.
- Do You Want It Pre-Decorated? Today's artificial Christmas trees can be found somewhat pre-decorated, which speeds up the rest of the Christmas tree decorating process. For example, many artificial Christmas trees come pre-lit so you don't have to string lights yourself. These pre-lit trees sometimes even have multiple patterns you can set the lights to or they can change colors. And other trees may come with other decorations already on them, such as flocking (where tiny fibers are placed on the limbs of the tree to resemble snow) or tinsel.
Test Factors We Considered When Picking the Best Artificial Christmas Trees
Here’s a rundown of the test factors we used when compiling our artificial Christmas tree naughty and nice list:
- Price: As fake Christmas trees are available at every price point, cost should be an important determining factor.
- Height: Knowing how tall the artificial Christmas tree is will help determine whether or not it will fit in a space.
- Color: What color options does this tree come in?
- Branch Tips: How many branch tips does the artificial Christmas tree have for hanging decorations on? In general, if a tree is between 6.5 to 7.5 feet tall, a tree should have between 800 to 900 branch tips. For a tree between 7.5 to 9.5 feet tall, look for between 1,200 to 1,500 branch tips.
- Lighting: Does this artificial Christmas tree come pre-lit? For optimal lighting, a pre-lit Christmas tree should have about 100 lights per foot of height.
- Lighting Options: If this tree comes pre-lit, can lighting patterns or light colors change?
- Flocked: Does the tree come with flocking?
- Stand: Does the artificial Christmas tree come with a stand?
- Warranty: Does the manufacturer claim the product will last for a few seasons and if so, what’s the tree’s warranty or return policy?
Let’s take a look at our list of the best artificial Christmas trees for 2021.
Best Pre-Lit Artificial Christmas Tree: National Tree Company Dunhill Fir Artificial Christmas Tree
With almost 2,000 ratings and 4.4 out of 5 stars on Amazon, the National Tree Company Dunhill Fir Lit Artificial Christmas Tree is one of the best pre-lit artificial Christmas trees you can find this year. Available in 7.5, 9, and 10 foot heights, this tree is designed to realistically mimic a fir tree with as many as 5,090 branch tips that shape easily for lots of decorating options. The included 900 LED lights can be set to be colored white or multicolor and feature 10 light functions controlled through an easy-to-use foot pedal. Built on a steel base, the tree's branches are hinged and the lights are pre-strung for easy assembly. The National Tree Company Dunhill Fir Lit Artificial Christmas Tree also comes with a steel stand and is backed by a five-year limited warranty.
- Available in three heights
- LED lights emit white or multicolored light and have 10 different lighting patterns
- Five-year limited warranty
- Bit expensive
Best Unlit Artificial Christmas Tree: Best Choice Products Premium Spruce Artificial Tree
For holiday decorators who prefer to pick and string their own lights, the Best Choice Products Premium Spruce Artificial Tree is tops when it comes to unlit fake Christmas trees. Available in 6, 7.5, and 9 foot heights, this artificial Christmas tree is constructed on an alloy steel and metal base so it will last for many holiday seasons. Its branch tips are made from PVC (polyvinyl chloride), which are fire retardant, very realistic, and easy to fluff for a more realistic-looking tree. The Best Choice Products Premium Spruce Artificial Tree also comes with a sturdy metal stand and comes in three pieces for super-easy assembly and storage after the holiday season.
- Unlit tree offers lots of creativity with decorating
- Comes in three heights
- Built to last on an alloy steel and metal base
- No manufacturer warranty that we can see
Most Realistic Artificial Christmas Tree: Balsam Hill 7ft Premium Pre-Lit Artificial Tree
If you want to trick holiday guests into thinking your artificial Christmas tree is the real deal, you'll want to check out the Balsam Hill 7ft Premium Pre-Lit Artificial Tree. Designed to replicate a classic blue spruce, this seven-foot fake tree sports 2,366 branch tips that mimic the look and feel of a real tree's needles. The color of the tree itself incorporates multiple hues of green, light gray, and blue-green to add to the realistic look. This fake tree also comes pre-lit with 800 LED lights that emit a warm, traditional candlelight glow, and the lights can be turned on and off with the included foot pedal. The Balsam Hill Premium Pre-Lit Artificial Tree also comes with a storage bag, tree stand with scratch-proof rubber feet, and a pair of "fluffing gloves" to aid you when shaping your tree. Just light a pine-scented candle nearby and you’ll never know it’s not the real thing.
- Designed to look like a class blue spruce
- Pre-lit with 800 LED lights
- Three-year warranty
- Pre-lit lighting only has one option
Best Flocked Artificial Christmas Tree: Best Choice Products Snow Flocked Christmas Tree
If you want your artificial Christmas tree to look like it's in the middle of a winter wonderland, then the Best Choice Products Snow Flocked Christmas Tree is for you! This fake tree is covered in decorative flocking that gives it a true winter look, like there’s a fresh blanket of snow on your tree. The tree is not pre-lit, which means you can opt to string lights if you choose, and it’s built on a metal base and held up by a sturdy metal stand. The Best Choice Products Snow Flocked Christmas Tree is also available in three different sizes — 6, 7.5, and 9 feet — so you can find the perfect fit for your space.
- Pre-decorated with flocking
- Available in three sizes
- Not pre-lit so you can add whatever lighting you like
- Flocked trees can be a bit messy during set-up and tear-down
- No manufacturer warranty that we can see
Best White Artificial Christmas Tree: National Tree Company Pre-lit Artificial Christmas Tree
Depending on how you like to decorate for the holidays, there can be something extremely elegant about a white artificial Christmas tree. If that's what you're looking for, your search ends with the National Tree Company Pre-lit Artificial Christmas Tree. Not only is this seven-foot tree colored in pristine white, but the branches are also flocked with silver glitter, giving it a magical, ethereal effect. The tree is also pre-lit with 450 white light bulbs that add to its holiday drama. The tree features hinged branches and pre-strung lights for easy set-up and tear-down. And the National Tree Company Pre-lit Artificial Christmas Tree comes with a two-year warranty on the lights and a five-year warranty on the tree.
- Flocked with silver glitter for an ethereal effect
- Pre-lit with 450 white light bulbs
- Two-year warranty on lights and five-year warranty on tree
- Only available in one height
- Lighting only in one pattern and color
Best Artificial Christmas Tree for Small Spaces: National Tree Company Kingswood Fir
Both real and artificial Christmas trees can be a bit large in diameter and depending on how large of a space you have, a normal-size tree may be too cramped or won't fit without moving furniture. For smaller spaces, a slimmer fake Christmas tree still provides a festive look without you needing to remodel a room. The National Tree Company Kingswood Fir Slim Artificial Christmas Tree is only 29 inches around, making it a great size for tight spaces. And with 6.5-, 7-, and 7.5-foot options available, there's still plenty of decorating space despite its thinner profile. The branch tips on the National Tree Company Kingswood Fir Slim Artificial Christmas Tree are realistically rendered, fire-resistant, and hypoallergenic.
- 29-inch diameter makes it a great size for small spaces
- Available in three heights
- Not pre-lit so it's an open canvas for decorating creativity
- Branch tip count is fewer due to its slim profile
Best Mini Artificial Christmas Tree: National Tree Company Pre-lit Artificial Mini Tree
Want an artificial Christmas tree that can go just about anywhere? Then check out the National Tree Company Pre-lit Artificial Mini Tree. This miniature holiday delight packs an impressive 71 branch tips into a two-foot body, offering plenty of decorating opportunities. Weighing less than three pounds, this mini holiday tree can literally sit anywhere — on tables, desks, and kitchen counters just to name a few options. It's also pre-lit with 35 white lights that will keep on glowing even if one bulb fails. And the National Tree Company Pre-lit Artificial Mini Tree is finished with a festive red cloth wrapping on the bottom tied with a gold bow.
- Two-foot tree can be put just about anywhere
- Pre-lit with 35 white lights
- Comes with a decorative wrap around the base
- All we see here is holiday cuteness!
Artificial Christmas Tree Care Tips
Your new artificial Christmas tree should bring you joy for quite a few holiday seasons. Here are some tips to take care of it.
- Remove All Decorations — Except for any decorations that are affixed to your tree, like pre-lit lights and flocking, all decorations should be removed before dismantling your tree. This will keep the tree and decorations from getting tangled and hooks and other sharp ends from destroying the branches and “needles” of the artificial tree.
- Unfluff the Branches — When you first set up an artificial Christmas tree, you need to "fluff" the branches of the tree to make the needles stand up. This makes the tree look fuller and more real, and gives ornaments, garland, and other decorations something to hold on to when decorating. When it's time to put the tree away for the season, you want to do the opposite and flatten the needles and "foliage" of the artificial tree so they all lay down in one direction. This helps keep them from breaking or getting damaged while they’re in storage.
- Use a Box or Storage Bag — Either keep the box your artificial Christmas tree came in or you can purchase (or make!) a tree storage bag. You want something that's not necessarily air-tight but will keep as much dust and dirt out as possible so your tree looks fresh next year. And make sure to store it in a cool, dry place that is not in direct sunlight.
Do you have an artificial Christmas tree that makes you merry? Tell us about it in the comments below!
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