Everyone's favorite medal-winning sporting event is back! I'm talking about all-star Amazon finds that will have you handing out gold medals from your couch. Oh, you thought I was talking about the Summer Olympics? O.K., fine, those are back, too. But, the real sporting event I'm concerned with is the one that will transform you from "regular online shopper" to "Amazon shopper extraordinaire," fit to stand at the top of the podium with all the accolades.
These products are medal-worthy in their own right, though. The portable mini-fan is perfect for throwing in your bag to cool off wherever you are, that toiletry bag has room for all your haircare and skincare products ... and, don't get me started on No. 4, which has easily been my holy grail hair tool for five solid years running. The creative mind in me loves No. 13 and, well, someone else in my house loves No. 15. Those are my medal-worthy favorites, but you're sure to find your own below. Go for the gold!
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You know those weird gunky things you have to get rid of from time to time? Like the rest of us, you probably use your poor fingernails, don't you? Stop the fingernail hate! These scraper tools will come in handy more often than you realize to get rid of candle wax, soap, dried food, price tag stickers, grime, and more. Don't sacrifice your mani ever again; get a scrape goat. (Get it?)
Keep Your Cool
I promise you that I 100 percent carry a small pocket-sized fan around with me whenever I leave the house. Late summer in Florida? It's brutal. My previous fan kept accidentally turning on at the bottom of my bag. No such issues with this handheld mini fan. It collapses into a size small enough to fit in your pocket and has added features like a flashlight and an emergency phone charger.
Do you struggle with the plight of "more gadgets that need to be charged than places to plug them in"? Yeah, I think a lot of us do. This charging station dock will get all of your smart tech juiced in one convenient location. This one comes with six USB ports and even the accompanying charging cables that work for both Apple and Android devices. LED status indicators let you know when you're at 100 percent.
Your Best Hair Days Are Ahead Of You
This is easily not only my favorite gadget on this list but also one of my favorite gadgets of all time. The Revlon one-step tool is both a dryer and a volumizer in one. Don't have time to dry and style in the mornings? Now you can do both in one step. This is also highly-rated on Amazon with nearly 300,000 reviews including this one: "My hair looks like I just walked out of the salon and spent $100, every time."
When You Go, On The Go
When you gotta go, you gotta go ... and, sometimes that means you gotta go while you're out and about. You can, ahem, cover your tracks by stashing this before-you-go toilet spray in a purse or bag. The travel-sized version of the full-sized product so many use at home, this portable poo-pourri stops bathroom odors before they begin, whether you're at a friend's house or the grocery store.
Shake, Rattle And Roll
I don't care how many shakers you've tried, BlenderBottle is still the OG for perfect protein shakes or smoothies every time. That's thanks, in part, to the patented wire whisk ball mixing system. That's not the only reason this is the people's champ. The wide mouth means you can easily add all your ingredients and the 28-oz. capacity of this one means you'll enjoy every last drop.
Here Comes The Hair Stopper
Amazon / Sheridan Jacobsen
This is one of those gadgets you don't realize you need until it's too late so why not go ahead and grab a five-pack for less than 10 bucks? It's a hair-catching drain cover that'll help keep your drains from getting clogged — from the bathroom to the laundry room and beyond. This one is made of a flexible, anti-slip material and is easy to remove, clean and reinstall wherever you need it.
Light It Up
Light up the night ... or any dimly-lit scenario with this two-pack of LED headlamps. I know, I know, you think you'll look silly wearing this, but its uses are limitless. I've found that one of these is really helpful for crafting or doing my nails or reading when lighting is less than optimal. This one is packed with features: A pivoting head, seven modes, and weather resistance. It's also so lightweight you won't remember you're wearing it.
A Scalp Massage In The Shower
Everybody knows the best part of going to the hair salon is that glorious scalp massage you receive in the midst of your shampoo. (I can just feel it now!) You can imitate this experience at home using a hair shampoo brush. This one is ergonomically designed to fit your palm and is ideal for all lengths and thicknesses of hair. Did you know that scalp massage eases itchiness and promotes blood circulation? Learn something new every day!
Have Toiletries, Will Travel
I have a confession to make. I'm somewhat of a bag-aholic. Purses, totes, shopping bags, toiletry bags ... it's seems I'm always on the hunt for the perfect grab-and-go accessory. But, my hunt is over for the best toiletry bag because I found this one from Bagsmart. It has tons of pockets and zippered compartments, zips up into a concise package, and — my favorite feature — has a stowaway 360-degree hook.
Color Your World
Who made the rule that all the lighting in your house has to be bright white? Boooooring. Add some color with these LED strip lights in a 50-foot length. Featuring both a remote and a smartphone app for controlling them, these lights display in myriad colors and can also be synced to music or set on a timer to deliver just the right colors at the predetermined time.
Trick Your Kids Into Taking Their Vitamins
Back in my day, we had chewable vitamins in the shape of the Flintstones cartoon characters. They were better than trying to swallow a pill but still didn't taste great. These gummy vitamins from SmartyPants are a step up from the olden days. Not only do they taste great, but they're packed with essential nutrients and premium ingredients like beta carotene, vitamin E, and omega-3s — all the good stuff they're not getting from that mac-n-cheese they insist upon for every meal.
A Perfect Pack Of Pens
I love pens. Like, a lot. Sharpies, jelly rollers, fine point ... it doesn't matter, gimme all of them. These fine-point markers come in a pack of 18 various shades and write like a dream, whether you're hotting down reminders on Post-It notes or dressing up your bullet journal. You don't have to feel guilty about indulging either; this set is less than eight dollars.
Storage Cubes For Any Space
After you buy all of this stuff, you're going to need somewhere to put it! I prefer "out of sight, out of mind" storage myself, like you'd find with these collapsible fabric storage cubes. Available in a variety of colors, these cubes are lightweight and easy to carry with built-in handles. When not in use, simply fold them up and tuck them away, but I'm betting you'll find lots of uses for them.
Treats For Man's Best Friend
I like chicken and waffles ... you like chicken and waffles ... so, why wouldn't your best furry buddy like chicken and waffles? These dog treats from Wag, Amazon's own pet brand, come in a resealable bag and are full of only good stuff with no weird additives like poultry byproducts (what even is that?) or soy or wheat. One reviewer said her "picky boxer loves these," which sounds like a ringing endorsement.
My obsession with bento boxes continues with the addition of this leakproof, bento-style lunchbox for the little ones. You know school days are right around the corner again so send them back in style. Each bento box has five compartments for a perfectly proportioned and balanced meal — no sandwich baggies required! Choose from super cool themed boxes like rainbows and butterflies, tropical and camo.
Try To Tie-Dye
Why buy tie-dye when you can try tie-dye? This one-step tie-dye party kit has everything you need to let your inner artist shine. It includes 18 bottles of color, enough for a party of six or up to 36 different tie-dye projects. All you need to supply are the shirts, bags, or shoes you want to tie-dye-ify. (Nope, that's not a word.) The best thing about tie-dying is that no two projects are ever the same.
Take A (More Comfortable) Seat
Finding yourself trapped at a desk all day? (I may or may not be speaking from experience here.) This gel seat cushion will make it less of a pain in the butt ... literally. Use it with your existing desk chair, a wheelchair, living room chair, or car seat for an added layer of comfort. It has a non-slip bottom and a removable cover that's easy to throw in the washing machine.
If you're only offering your pup balls and squeaky toys, you're missing out on a whole other world. This interactive puzzle will give you an opportunity to see just how smart your little friend is. Hide up to nine dog treats in each of the puzzle's nine removable pieces and then watch Fido go to work. Once he mastered level one, test him with more advanced puzzle options.
Dishcloths are one of these things that have a million options and can be a hit-or-miss purchase. These Swedish dishcloths get high marks from reviewers because, let's be honest, the Swedes are cooler at everything. One reviewer said, "I'm a fan of these for their attractive colors, usefulness, washability, and quick-drying characteristics." A pack of 10 in assorted colors will only set you back $20.
Try These Magnetic Cheat Sheets
I'm always reaching for the instruction manual for my myriad kitchen appliances: The Instant Pot, the air fryer, you name it. I simplified my life with the addition of these magnetic cheat sheets that affix directly to my devices. This set is for the air fryer and lists cooking times and temperatures for a variety of popular food choices. Buy it in black or white to fit your personal style.
Eggs — In A Dash
Eggs should be simple to cook, right? So, why do I find myself struggling with them? Add baking soda to boiling eggs, ice bath, pressure cook them for five minutes, peel ... it's all too much. Invest in one of these Dash rapid egg cookers and wave goodbye to all the extra steps — just perfect eggs every time. Dash is famous for its small kitchen appliances and this one is a winner that cooks up to six eggs at a time.
Hooked On This Car Accessory
Sure, backseats are useful and trunk space is great, but sometimes you need just a few more (organized) spots in which to stash stuff. These car seat headrest hooks take up very little room but give you added space for your purse, a coat, or additional bags from the store. No tools are required for these hooks, which slide easily on your car's existing headrest rails once the headrest is popped off.
Grab A MagSafe Charger
One thing I did not understand before I upgraded to the iPhone 12 was the concept of MagSafe compatibility. And, I'll be honest, I'm still not sure I fully understand it, but I do know I needed one of these Apple MagSafe chargers. Outfitted with perfectly aligned magnets that hit your phone or AirPods in just the right spot, this wireless charger makes quick charging a snap.
A Multipurpose Mesh Bag
The question isn't "where will you use this mesh carryall bag?", it's "where won't you use it?" Its extra-large size is ideal for a variety of scenarios, from going to the beach to shopping at the grocery store. Made of mesh and reinforced with nylon, it is both lightweight and breathable (perfect for getting rid of liquids or sand that could get trapped inside). Fold it down to a small size and throw it in your purse.
Car Cleaning Made Fun
I find myself cleaning my car a lot ... at red lights and in parking lots. No kidding. And, I figure, if I'm going to clean, it might as well be fun. This cleaning gel will remind you a lot of that slime stuff your kids can't stop making, but in a more — ahem — grown-up form. Dab at your dashboard, vents and door handles, among other things, to remove even the tiniest specks of dust.
Try This For Teething
Teething babies are the worst. They're just so helpless and pitiful. Mimi the mushroom is a great teething device, in part, because it mimics the shape of the breast which is familiar to the baby. Small and lightweight, it's easy for the baby to hold and chew on — front to back — without risk of choking or gagging. One reviewer said, "We are now on month seven and, holy cow, is this still the best teether. My daughter won't take a paci but she uses this as one as well as a teether. This is just amazing."
The New Meaning Of Microwave Popcorn
I love everything about popcorn. I especially love popcorn at the movie theater, but I'll still settle for making it at home and lounging in my sweats. This micro-pop popcorn popper makes my favorite treat without the need for oil or butter and comes in both "snack" and "family" sizes. But, let's be honest: There's only one size ("me" size) and, of course, I'm adding butter.
The Best Healing Ointment
If you don't have a jar of Aquaphor in your medicine cabinet or linen closet right now, are you even doing life right? Aquaphor Healing Ointment is everything for dry, chapped, or irritated skin and is even gentle enough to use on baby. No kidding, I have a large tub and have used it on everything from chapped lips to minor burns to diaper rash with flawless results.
USBs For Everyone
Sometimes you just need a little more space. That was the scenario I found myself in a few weeks ago amid a mini-makeover of my home office space. I needed just a few more USB ports near my work desk in a package that wouldn't take up a lot of space. This four-port USB hub has individual power switches for up to four devices. It doesn't charge, but it does let you add additional USBs to your existing computers or smart TVs.
Stash Leftovers With Ease
Quart bags, freezer bags, sandwich bags, snack bags — I had them all and way overused them. These food-grade silicone bags are reusable, leakproof, and both dishwasher- and microwave-safe. Best of all, I feel better because I'm reducing my single-use plastic waste. Buy them in singles from stand-up minis to half-gallon sizes or a bundle of four in assorted colors.
A Flossing Favorite
Earlier this year, I went to my dentist for my usual six-month cleaning and they said I needed to purchase a Waterpik. But, holy teeth, have you looked at the prices of those things? Absurd. I found this cordless water flosser for half the cost on Amazon and it is, quite simply, amazing. It has four interchangeable jet tips and a detachable water tank, which means I can floss at home or throw it in my travel bag wherever I may be going.
If there's anything I love more than butter, I don't know what it is. Just call me Paula Dean Jr, y'all. This porcelain butter keeper crock keeps your butter soft and spreadable, no refrigeration required. All you have to do is change out the water on the inside every two to three days. We're talking real butter here, not margarine, O.K.? Don't disappoint me.
The Best Pillowcase For Your Face And Hair
My hair has never looked better since I started sleeping on a silk pillowcase at night. But, it's not just your hair that stands to benefit, it is also great for your skin because it contains 18 amino acids that visibly improve your complexion. This mulberry silk pillowcase is soft, breathable, and smooth and comes in sizes and colors for toddlers up to king-sized pillow users.
One-Touch Phone Mount For Your Car
For all the ways they've improved vehicles to accommodate phones as a part of our commute (how else would we access GPS and Spotify?), I still enjoy a good old-fashioned car mount like this one from iOttie. It works for a variety of phones and a variety of vehicles with a telescoping arm and strong suction power. The best feature is its easy one-touch lock and release.
The Cutting Board Of Your Dreams
All cutting boards were not created equal, like this one made of bamboo that has juice grooves and four storage containers that you can literally rake your choppings into thanks to what the manufacturer dubbed as "the drop zone." The extra-large surface is ideal and it can be turned this way or that depending upon whether you're right- or left-handed.
Fire Up Your Streaming Options
Have you run out of stuff to watch? I don't know how it's possible with 4,729 streaming services out there, but I swear I've watched everything they have to offer, thanks to this Fire TV stick. For less than $40, you can give yourself access to the best of what's out there, from Prime Video and Hulu to Netflix and Disney+. The Alexa voice remote means you don't even have to move your fingers.