By Eileen Ogintz
Tribune Content Agency
It’s always the little things.
It’s the little things that make you more comfortable on a plane, a hike or sightseeing with a gaggle of kids.
The little things that make you feel more fashionable — and fashion forward — even when you are living out of a suitcase.
(Check in with our new “Cool Travel Gear” section for mini-reviews on stuff that helps you on your journeys)
A water bottle that won’t leak, a travel coffee mug that makes a really good cup of coffee when you most need it, socks that keep your feet comfortable all day, a portable charger, shoes that are comfortable, as well as stylish.
With Mother’s Day approaching, think about some little things that will make the moms in your life smile on their next trip. You don’t have to spend a fortune either!
Here are 12 picks that are guaranteed to please:
— A new hard-sided spinner suitcase that makes it so much easier to get through an airport. I like the hard-case Genius Pack with its internal compartments. There’s even one for chargers and dirty laundry. It’s less than $200.Briggs and Riley’s new International Carry-On Expandable Spinner is the first hardside that is expandable, allowing you to expand for 22 percent more space and then compress back to the original size ($529).
Comfy clothes to travel in that don’t look wrinkled or rumpled are a must. Toad & Co. has a new Modern Travel collection, including The Wisper Cardie that not only looks great but is a very comfortable mix of Tencel and Spandex; Travelers also swear by their Jetlite Pant. Oregon-based YALA designs offers comfy but stylish dresses, tunics, tops and leggings that are made to last hours on a plane or wadded up in suitcase. Try Canadian-based Lisette L for especially flattering pants that won’t wrinkle and beijaflor jeans with Smart Fiber technology that make these jeans lightweight, breathable, water resistant. (Those made with Emana fabric are said to smooth skin!)
A packable hat like this one from Soft Surroundings ($34.95) is always a good bet in summer. The Panama Quick Shade ($39.95) can be worn as a regular sun hat or the quick shade adds extra protection in the back of the neck. I’m a fan of hats like this one ($34.95) that has built-in InsectShield protection, if you are going to be in a place with lots of pesky critters.
There is nothing like a massage to de-stress travel. You can book one if you are going to be at a resort with a spa. If not, Soothe is the world’s largest on-demand massage app and service that can deliver a licensed massage therapist with as little as 60 minutes advance notice. Fees start at $99 — tip included! Book through the app!
After long flights, I’ve become a fan of the easy to use Nerium Eye-V Moisture Boost Hydrogel Patches ($55 for a set of five). Ultra luxe face moisturizer would also be a welcome gift for moms who fly on long-haul flights.
An extra set of hands for a mom of young kids at the hotel pool, beach or while you need to get some work done. The Babysitting Company screens, hires and trains (all are CPR trained) professional sitters who can come to you. (They operate in major cities and in Florida.)
A new style water bottle — an insulated soft flask, the Ultra Handheld Chill from Camelbak that keeps water cold twice as long as a regular bottle, but without all that bulk. There’s a secure zipped pocket for your phone, card or keys ($45).
A Traveling Coffee Press Espro that promises grit-free coffee or tea on the go that won’t leak, stays hot and delivers the flavor coffee lovers want ($34.95, Amazon.com).
Give Mom cozy PJs, like those from Cool-jams, a company known for its top-performing collection of hi-tech smart fabric sleepwear that will wick moisture. The Lady’s Sleep Enhancing Pajama Pants. ($149.95) Available only from Hammacher Schlemmer, these are said to promote a better night’s sleep using a patented technology that increases blood flow by converting released body heat into therapeutic infrared light that is re-absorbed back into the skin. (You can also get socks with this Celliant technology.) Perhaps a good bet for someone with chronic night aches made worse by travel!
Extra juice for your devices, even in the wilderness, with Venture 30, a portable charger from GoalZero.com, that is weatherproof and weighs just 8 ounces ($99.99).
“Try the new slim and lightweight powercell 3015 in white/grey with colorful charging cables from Ventev. ($34.99) I also like the easy-to-carry USB charging hub rq600 that can charge six devices at once. ($49.99)”
New socks like the SHASHI Cool Feet Socks, a patented performance grip sock originally designed as a studio sock, but now works well for travel. ($18) SmartWool now has cute, no-show Merino Wool socks that will keep your feet comfortable no matter how much you walk (starting at $12.95). There is also a variety of cushioned hiking socks too. And for those facing long flights, consider a pair of compression socks that will help circulation and reduce swelling.
Comfy shoes are a must for long travel. Sure it’s hard to buy shoes for someone, but a gift certificate is always appreciated. ECCO offers stylish shoes with plenty of padding and comfort (I really like their Soft 7 sneaker). There’s also podiatrist-designed Vionic. And, these days, Crocs have more to offer than just clogs and the shoes are inexpensive, lightweight bets for those long travel days.
Happy Mother’s Day!
© 2017 EILEEN OGINTZ
DISTRIBUTED BY TRIBUNE CONTENT AGENCY, LLC.