The 8 Best Artificial Christmas Trees of 2022, Tested and Reviewed

Our top pick overall was the Puleo International Pre-Lit Teton Pine Tree for its realistic appearance, ease of assembly, and reasonable price.

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artificial christmas trees

Dera Burreson / Real Simple

The best artificial Christmas trees eliminate all the hassle that comes with live Christmas trees—from sparse, uneven branches to the inevitable shedding needles you need to sweep up. Rather than hunting down the perfect holiday centerpiece year after year, you can opt for a reliable artificial Christmas tree that will stick with you for many seasons. 

We tested 24 popular models in our Lab and evaluated them on factors like setup, lights, appearance, stability, ease of storage, and value. For expert insight on selecting an artificial Christmas tree, we spoke with Jerry Cavallaro, digital content manager at Rent-A-Christmas, and Brad Schmidt, owner and creative director of Brad Schmidt Designs

“When trying to find a realistic Christmas tree, it all comes down to the branches and needles,” says Cavallaro. “From afar, one of the easiest things to spot is the profile of the tree—a conical shaped tree looks more artificial while a staggered branch layout creates a far more realistic silhouette. A closer look at the needles will help even more—their color, shape, feel, and the material they are made from all help determine the tree's level of realism. Tree tips that are made from molded poly-ethylene (PE) are more realistic, and a higher tip-count per branch generally makes for a fuller, more realistic tree.”

Our top pick is the Puleo International 7.5-ft. Pre-Lit Teton Pine Artificial Christmas Tree for its realistic look, ease of assembly, stability, and reasonable price. Plus, it comes pre-lit so you don’t have to worry about decorating. 

Keep reading for more of our tested artificial tree selections and guidance on what to look for when finding the right one for your home.

Best Overall Artificial Christmas Tree

Puleo International 7.5 Pre-Lit Teton Pine Artificial Christmas Tree

5
Puleo International 7.5 Pre-Lit Teton Pine Artificial Christmas Tree with 600 Clear UL-listed Lights

Walmart

Editor's note: The Puleo International 7.5-ft. Pre-Lit Teton Pine Artificial Christmas Tree is currently out of stock. Instead, we recommend the Balsam Hill BH Fraser Fir Artificial Christmas Tree, which won our Most Realistic category.

Who it’s for: People who want a pre-lit, realistic, and easy-to-store artificial Christmas tree. 

Who it isn’t for: People who want colorful lighting with multiple settings. 

This traditional, pre-lit pine tree from Puleo International earned its place as our best overall artificial Christmas tree for its robust performance in our Lab tests. With a simple, one-person assembly process, needle variation, sturdy construction, and an impressive takedown time of only five minutes, this classic tree is a streamlined solution to add festivity to your home this holiday season. “[The] tree looks great for the price and quality is excellent,” says our tester. 

They highlighted “the varied needles,” which lends this tree a realistic look, along with a lush construction of 1,347 tips and a “nicely hidden” trunk. For those who want an efficient setup and takedown process, this pick is also “very simple to assemble, easy to put [the] stand together and find plugs to match up,” according to our tester. When it came time to disassemble the tree it “fit nicely in the box.”

While the pre-installed white lights simplify setup, they don’t offer multiple modes or settings, so you’re stuck with the classic, colorless lights. When our tester unscrewed one bulb they found that “only a small section is impacted so it would be easy to troubleshoot the missing bulb.”

Price at time of publish: $419

Product Details:

  • Height: 7.5 feet
  • Base Diameter: 52 inches
  • Lights: Yes, clear
  • Tip Count: 1,347
Puleo International 7.5-ft. Pre-Lit Teton Pine Artificial Christmas Tree

Dera Burreson

Most Realistic Artificial Christmas Tree

Balsam Hill BH Fraser Fir Artificial Christmas Trees

4.3
Balsam Hill BH Fraser Fir Artificial Christmas Tree

Balsam Hill

Who it’s for: People who want a lush artificial tree that closely mimics the real thing. 

Who it isn’t for: People who want an artificial tree that stores compactly. 

In our Lab tests, the Balsam Hill Fraser Fir Artificial Christmas Tree ranked highest for its realism—our tester could barely distinguish it from a freshly chopped tree. “My favorite thing about this tree is the realistic appearance,” says our tester. “The branches are full and resemble a real Christmas tree.”

The quality of this pick is undeniable, as it boasts almost three times the tip count of most other trees at this height, creating a lush shape with no gaps or spaces. “The branches are easy to fluff and make the tree look full,” says our tester. While this tree has the most impressive appearance on our list, that quality also coincides with the price, which is higher than most other options. That said, it can last for years and “is really beautiful and high-quality if you can afford the splurge,” says our tester. 

One downside to this artificial tree is its weight, as our tester found it somewhat challenging to disassemble without assistance. “My least favorite thing is the heaviness and size of the tree even when it is taken apart for storage,” they say. “It takes up a lot of space and is pretty difficult to get into its storage bag.” For those who have limited storage space or will need to set up and disassemble their tree alone, you might want to consider a lighter, more compact selection. 

Price at time of publish: From $600

Product Details:

  • Height: 7 heights ranging from 5.5 feet to 12 feet
  • Base Diameter: 44-69 inches
  • Lights: Yes (clear, LED, multi, and color & clear options); unlit also available
  • Tip Count: 1,478-6,839
Balsam Hill BH Fraser Fir Artificial Christmas Tree

Dera Burreson

Best Budget Artificial Christmas Tree

Best Choice Products 7.5-ft Premium Spruce Artificial Christmas Tree

4.2
Best Choice Products 7.5ft Premium Spruce Artificial Holiday Christmas Tree

Amazon

Who it’s for: People who want an affordable and traditional artificial tree.

Who it isn’t for: People who want a pre-lit artificial Christmas tree. 

For those decorating on a budget, turn to this Best Choice Product Premium Spruce Tree—which our tester commended for its quick setup and disassembly time. It took under 13 minutes to build the tree and only four minutes to take it down. 

Despite this brief assembly time, our tester noted that one of this tree’s downfalls is that each branch needs to be fluffed individually for a semi-realistic appearance, which takes a considerable amount of time and drastically delays the overall setup process. Because this tree comes at a lower price, it sacrifices a bit of quality in terms of materials and appearance. “Keep in mind these branches do not look very real and do not feel real,” says our tester. “There are a good amount of gaps and you can see the trunk of the tree as well.”

Still, for such an affordable price, this tree boasts impressive stability, according to our tester. “The base was stable and supported the tree, and the star went on well at the top as well.” They remarked that while this tree might not be for those who want a hyper-realistic option, “it will do its job at a great price.”

Price at time of publish: From $100

Product Details:

  • Height: 6, 7.5, or 9 feet
  • Base Diameter: 52-59 inches
  • Lights: No
  • Tip Count: 798-2,028
Best Choice Products Premium Spruce Artificial Christmas Tree

Dera Burreson

Best Decorative Artificial Christmas Tree

Grandin Road Long Needle Tinsel Tree

4.3
Grandin Road Long Needle Tinsel Tree

Grandin Road

Who it’s for: People who want an unconventional Christmas tree. 

Who it isn’t for: People who want an artificial Christmas tree that comes in more size and height variations. 

Grandin Road’s Long Needle Tinsel Tree has the appearance of a snow-dusted and sparkly Christmas tree, ideal for those who want to decorate their home a bit outside the traditional holiday box. “This is very nice looking if you want a sparkly tree,” says our tester. “High quality and very full because of the fluffy needles.” With champagne-colored tinsel needles and a smattering of 550 included lights, this tree can be a unique centerpiece in your space. 

Our tester was impressed with the stability of this tree, noting that it is “pretty stable when you try to push it. Ornaments went on easily, and it would probably hold a decently heavy ornament.” It was also fairly straightforward to set up and take down, though our tester did note that the included lights were a bit complicated and that “the needles fell off of the tree pretty easily when it was being jostled around, so a lot of clean up would be necessary.”

Also, note that this artificial tree only comes in one height and diameter, so if your space won’t accommodate these dimensions, you will need to opt for another tree. 

Price at time of publish: $799

Product Details:

  • Height: 7.5 feet
  • Base Diameter: 51 inches
  • Lights: Yes, clear
  • Tip Count: Not listed
Grandin Road 7.5-ft. Long Needle Tinsel Tree

Dera Burreson

Best Flocked Artificial Christmas Tree

Vickerman 7.5-ft. Flocked Alaskan Pine Artificial Christmas Tree

4.6
Vickerman 7.5' Flocked Alaskan Pine Artificial Christmas Tree

Vicerkman

Who it’s for: People who want a traditional artificial Christmas tree with flocking. 

Who it isn’t for: People who like a very minimal tree that they can decorate themselves. 

For those new to the realm of artificial Christmas trees, flocking is a coat of faux snow that rests on your tree, lending it that freshly-dusted look. This Vickerman flocked tree also includes 800 warm white bulbs in various sizes, which our tester says adds a lot of beauty: “This tree is perfect with minimal decor added.” 

This tree was easy to set up and take down, with a timed assembly and storage of 15 minutes and five minutes, respectively. While our tester was able to set up the tree by themselves, you should note that this tree weighs 65 pounds, which may be too heavy to manage for some users. The Vickerman tree also stood out for its stability, and “would support heavy ornaments with ease,” says our tester. “As I was placing the ornaments, the tree did not sway much or shake.”

While many flocked trees are a vast improvement on their messy predecessors, faux snow can still create more hassle than an unflocked tree. “The mess of flocking could be a deal breaker for some,” says our tester. “I wonder how many years you would get out of this before the flocking starts to look worn/gone.” But if you’re willing to do sporadic sweeping and want a tree with that just-chopped appearance, then this Vickerman pick is absolutely worth considering. 

Price at time of publish: $922

Product Details:

  • Height: 7.5 or 12 feet
  • Base Diameter: 68 inches
  • Lights: Yes, clear and multi
  • Tip Count: 1,495
Vickerman 7.5-ft. Flocked Alaskan Pine Artificial Christmas Tree

Dera Burreson

Best Slim Artificial Christmas Tree

Wondershop 7.5-ft. Pre-Lit Slim Virginia Pine Artificial Christmas Tree

4.7
Wondershop 7.5' Pre-Lit Slim Virginia Pine Artificial Christmas Tree

Target

Who it’s for: People who want a slim, affordable tree that comes pre-lit. 

Who it isn’t for: People who want a lush artificial tree with a high tip count. 

If you want to skip the hassle of untangling a mess of Christmas lights every year, opt for this pre-lit Wondershop tree instead—it comes with 400 bright lights that can go with just about any decor style. Our tester loved the needle variety, which gave it “the look of a real tree.” 

At 38 inches in diameter, this tree is a slimmer selection, but it is also better suited to tight spaces, apartments, or entryways where you don’t want a lush tree creating a blockade. “I would recommend this tree because it is very realistic looking and would look good in a small space,” our tester says. “It is pretty tall, but thin so if that's what you're looking for it would be great.” 

This artificial tree is also one of the more affordable options on our list, without a notable downside in quality or realism. It also assembled and disassembled easily, “once you de-fluff it,” our tester says. “It fits easily in the box it came in for good storage.”

Price at time of publish: $275

Product Details:

  • Height: 7.5 feet
  • Base Diameter: 38 inches
  • Lights: Yes, clear
  • Tip Count: 759
Wondershop 7.5-ft Pre-Lit Slim Virginia Pine Artificial Christmas Tree

Dera Burreson

Best Unlit Artificial Christmas Tree

National Tree Company Kingswood Fir Slim Artificial Christmas Tree

4.7
National Tree Company Artificial Kingswood Fir Slim Christmas Tree

Amazon

Who it’s for: People who want a simple, easy-to-set-up, and unlit artificial Christmas tree.

Who it isn’t for: People who want a very realistic artificial Christmas tree. 

The slim National Tree Company Artificial Kingswood Fir has a no-frills design that makes assembly “very easy and intuitive,” with a setup time of under seven minutes and a takedown time of under three. At just under 15 pounds, this lightweight tree is easy to handle without sacrificing stability for its maneuverability. “Despite its lean profile, the tree is very stable, holds the ornaments well, and the topper did not challenge the stability,” says our tester. “It stayed straight and secure.” 

With a diameter of 30 inches, this is one of the slimmest trees on our list, which our tester says was “exaggerated by the height.” They noted that the PVC needles don’t successfully mimic a real-life fir and that portions of the trunk do show through the branches. That said, “the tree does not look spindly or patchy.” 

This pick also comes at an affordable price, making it ideal for those who are decorating on a budget. While it’s not the most realistic or lush artificial tree on our list, it “would be ideal for a home with limited space, where a standard/larger tree would be prohibitive,” says our tester. 

Price at time of publish: From $85

Product Details:

  • Height: 6.5, 7, or 7.5 feet
  • Base Diameter: 28-30 inches
  • Lights: No
  • Tip Count: Not listed
National Tree Company Artificial Kingswood Fir Slim Christmas Tree

Dera Burreson

Best Tall Artificial Christmas Tree

Tree Classics by Balsam Hill Real-Feel Heritage Balsam Spruce Faux Christmas Tree

4.5
Pottery Barn Real-Feel Heritage Balsam Spruce Faux Christmas Tree

Pottery Barn

Who it’s for: People who want a grand, lush, and pre-lit artificial Christmas tree 

Who it isn’t for: People who have low ceilings or want an affordable tree. 

If you have dedicated space for an impressive, centerpiece tree, this 9-foot Real Feel Heritage Balsam Spruce will be an elegant addition to your Christmas decor. Our tester highlighted that the “tree is very realistic with a mix of PVC pine needles and ‘Real Feel’ needles, which stood out and looked realistic from a distance.” The high tip count also aids with fullness, lending this tree a lush, well-distributed appearance. 

With a tree of this size stability is essential, so the “sturdy base with three ways to tighten” came in handy to ensure it stayed in place. “The trunk of the tree is sturdy and the individual branches are sturdy, however the type of material leads to heavier ornaments not being as stable on the tree,” says our tester. 

While it’s to be expected that such a large tree would be a bit pricier, this pick is far above the median price of $296. People on a budget may need to opt for another tree, “however, the quality of the branches and stability and aesthetic are nice and high quality.”

Price at time of publish: From $900

Product Details:

  • Height: 6, 7, or 9 feet
  • Base Diameter: 46-61 inches
  • Lights: Yes (clear or multi), unlit also available
  • Tip Count: 2,045-4,653
Tree Classics by Balsam Hill 9-ft. Real-Feel Heritage Balsam Spruce Faux Christmas Tree

Dera Burreson

Final Verdict

Our top pick is the Puleo International 7.5-ft. Pre-Lit Teton Pine Artificial Christmas Tree for its lush, realistic look, convenient lighting, and streamlined assembly and takedown process. In our Lab testing, this artificial Christmas tree received stellar ratings across setup, stability, ease of storage, and value.

Our Testing Process

To select only the best artificial Christmas trees on the market, we acquired 24 models and tested them in our Lab. Our testers first evaluated the setup process by timing and recording how long it took to unbox, assemble, and fluff their tree. They noted whether the tree required multiple people to set up, the clarity of the provided instructions, whether there were any additional features to assist with setup, if there was any discomfort, and if the tester could arrange the branches to make the tree more realistic. 

The 8 Best Artificial Christmas Trees of 2022

Dera Burreson

Once the trees were assembled, our testers examined the branches and needles, evaluating whether they appeared high-quality and realistic. They looked for bare patches, color variance, and compared the inner branches to the outer branches to see if there was any variety in feel or condition. 

For trees flocked with snow, our testers observed how they fared throughout assembly and whether the flocking seemed evenly applied and realistic. Our testers evaluated trees with lights by cycling through the lighting modes, if applicable, and unscrewed a bulb to see if the remaining lights stayed on. 

Our testers then hung a provided set of ornaments on one side of the tree and considered if the tree stood straight or became unstable. As they hung the ornaments they noted whether the branches dipped, swayed, or seemed unable to support the ornaments. They also placed a topper on the tree and scanned for any imbalance. To measure ease of storage, our testers then timed how long it took to remove all the ornaments and disassemble each tree. 

After the testing process concluded, our testers saw the retail price of their product and assessed whether the product performed as advertised and if it was worth its price. They then scored each artificial tree on setup, appearance, stability, ease of storage, and value.

More Artificial Christmas Trees to Consider

Frontgate Rocky Mountain Full Profile Tree: Our tester commended this artificial tree for its realistic outer layer of needles, lightweight feel, and stability. It also boasts a high tip count and lush profile, lending it a realistic appearance. That said, the tree’s lower and inner layers seemed a bit sparse, and for this price tag, our tester felt that shoppers could probably find a better tree. 

Balsam Hill Vermont White Spruce Artificial Christmas Tree: This lush artificial tree from Balsam Hill comes in a wide variety of heights, and has an impressive appearance with its brown trunk, full branches, and elegant lights. While our tester would still recommend this tree, it was more challenging to set up and store than other selections on our list.

The 8 Best Artificial Christmas Trees of 2022

Dera Burreson

How to Shop for Artificial Christmas Trees Like a Pro

Size

Shopping online for an artificial Christmas tree eliminates the guesswork around sizing up your ceiling height compared to whatever spruce, pine, or fir you have in mind. “An important thing to remember is that you are not looking for the perfect Christmas tree, you are looking for the perfect Christmas tree for your space,” says Cavallaro. We recommend measuring the width and height of your space to ensure that there are at least a few inches to spare. Thankfully, artificial tree heights and diameters can vary greatly, so you can find one that accommodates your space.

Lights

A glimmering Christmas tree is the centerpiece of any home during the holiday season, so considering whether your tree comes pre-lit should be top of mind. While a pre-lit tree will cut out time spent decorating, if you prefer to have more creative control over your lighting or enjoy decking out the tree with family, you may want to opt for an unlit tree. Pre-lit trees can vary from traditional incandescent bulbs to LED lights that you can customize—the Balsam Hill BH Fraser Fir Artificial Christmas Tree, our Best Realistic pick, comes with six different lighting options.

Materials

“Most artificial Christmas tree needles are made from extruded polyvinyl chloride (PVC), molded poly-ethylene (PE), or a combination of the two types,” says Cavallaro. “PE offers a more realistic look but is typically much more expensive. Some of the best quality trees will have PVC branches close to the trunk of the tree, with lifelike PE tips on the outside to offer the most realistic look.”

Tree Type

While artificial trees are made of similar materials, they can resemble different Christmas tree varieties, which include fir trees, pine trees, and spruce trees. There are variations within each of these primary categories, though artificial trees are more likely to go for a generic mock-up of the broader category. “Faux trees look so real now, it’s almost impossible to tell the difference,” says Schmidt.

The type of tree you opt for comes down to design preferences—you really can’t go wrong regardless of the style you choose. Fir trees tend to be denser, with flat, soft needles, while pine trees are a bit more sparse, with upward-facing branches. Spruce trees, meanwhile, have sharper needles and are cone-shaped.

The 8 Best Artificial Christmas Trees of 2022

Dera Burreson

Questions You Might Ask

How much does a good artificial tree cost?

Of the 24 artificial trees we tested in our Lab, prices ranged from $30 to $1,800, with a median price of $296. While you can certainly spend more on an artificial tree, there are affordable options that perform similarly, so you don’t need to break the bank to find a realistic, durable, and stable selection.

What is the best material for an artificial Christmas tree?

The most common materials for an artificial Christmas tree are PVC and polyethylene, or PE. For those who want to prioritize finding a realistic artificial tree, PE can better mimic bristles and branches. But if you’re looking for an affordable option, PVC is still a reliable material commonly found in artificial trees.

How many tips should an artificial tree have?

The number of tips your artificial tree has directly correlates to how full it appears—and trees with plentiful tips tend to look more realistic. Tree height determines the tip count, with larger trees requiring more tips to fill out their mass. Trees around six feet tall need a tip count of anywhere from 800 to 900, while a 10-foot tree needs a tip count of anywhere from 3,500 to 5,000. Check your manufacturer specs to ensure that the tip count is aligned with its height to avoid purchasing a sparse or unrealistic tree.

Take Our Word for It

This article was written by Quinn Gawronski, associate commerce editor for Real Simple, who has three years of experience writing and editing product reviews and roundups. To compile this list, we tested 27 electric blankets in our Lab and evaluated them on setup, tree appearance, stability, ease of storage, and value. For expert tips, we consulted with Jerry Cavallaro, the digital content manager at Rent-A-Christmas, and Brad Schmidt, the owner and creative director of Brad Schmidt Designs.

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