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45 Genius Things That Make Spending Time Outside More Comfortable & Fun

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At long last, warmer days are here again and life is starting to look a little bit brighter. And with the sun and longer evenings, you’ll probably be spending a lot more time outdoors, so as you gear up for your grand return to the outside world, it’s absolutely imperative that you’re fully prepared for all that entails. My advice: Stock up on a bunch of genius things that make being outside more fun and comfortable, too.

Chief on my list of must-haves? This insect repellent, of course. The fragrance-free formula is gentle enough for almost anyone and works for up to 14 hours, so you don’t have to apply and reapply. Plus, I love that it’s non-greasy, dries quickly, and is DEET-free.

If you’re looking to have a few people over for an outside hang, it may be time to elevate your backyard or porch. The good news? You can do it without breaking the bank. For example, this affordable outdoor area rug is a quick way to add a chic element to your patio. Add a couple of chairs and a small table, and you’re all set for an at-home happy hour. Keep on scrolling for even more genius things on Amazon that will make hanging outside the best thing ever.

1

A Game-Changing Balm That Helps Prevent Chafing

If you’re participating in outdoor sports — or just wearing a skirt in hot weather — it’s worth investing in this anti-chafe balm. The smooth glide-on formula is made with allergen-free, plant-derived ingredients, and it’s easy to apply to any part of your body in order to prevent uncomfortable rubbing.

2

The Collapsible Lanterns You Need For Your Next Camping Trip

Don’t even think about camping out in the woods (or your backyard) without these LED lanterns. They’re compact, lightweight, and collapsible, so they won’t take up a lot of space in your backpack, and each lantern is decked out in 30 bright LED bulbs that cut through the pitch black darkness of the wilderness.

3

A Window Bird Feeder With Rave Reviews

Get in touch nature from the comfort of your home with this bird feeder that attaches to the outside of any window. The acrylic feeder is designed with a removable tray that’s easy to clean and strong suction cups that keep it firmly in place. One reviewer wrote, “This cardinal spent hours at the feeder today - not even eating! Just hanging out with me. I love this feeder!”

4

The Training Set For Outdoor Workouts

What better way to attain your fitness goals than with this training equipment set? It includes a 15-foot agility ladder, 10 sport cones, three loop resistance bands, and a bag to keep everything together. The set serves as a great warm-up routine, but it’s also a challenging workout on its own. Get your set in orange or yellow.

5

A Reef-Safe Sunscreen Mist With Brightening Vitamin C

This antioxidant-infused body mist can do it all; not only does it offer broad-spectrum SPF 50 protection, but it’s also formulated with vitamin C to brighten skin. The body mist absorbs easily and is sweat- and water-resistant for up to 80 minutes. It’s lightweight, reef-safe, and most importantly, does not leave behind that dreaded white-cast.

6

The Insect Repellent You Won’t Want To Leave Home Without

Take it from me: Insect repellent is your best friend when it comes to the great outdoors, and this lotion repels ticks and pesky mosquitoes for up 14 hours. The fragrance-free, non-greasy formula contains 20% picaridin, which may be more effective at than DEET. Throw this in your bag before your next outdoor excursion.

7

These Polarized Shades In A Timeless Style

These polarized sunglasses prove that you don’t have to sacrifice style for functionality. Not only do they block out UV rays, but the polarization reduces the glare reflected off of mirrors, bodies of water, and and other shiny surfaces. What’s more, the classic style is available in tons of frame and lens colors.

8

A Hat That’s Equal Parts Fashion & Sun Protection

A floppy straw hat will never go out of style, and this one has an extra-wide brim to shield your face from the sun. Even better, you can fold it up and pack it in your beach bag or suitcase, and it won’t lose its shape. Choose from neutrals like tan, black, and white.

  • Available styles: 16

9

An Outdoor Smart Plug You Can Control With Your Phone

Not only is this durable smart plug perfect for powering outdoor equipment, but it’s engineered so that you can control it from an app on your phone from absolutely anywhere. Use the app to set your lights or appliances on a schedule, or power them down at your bidding. You can even pair it with Alexa and Google Assistant for voice control.

10

The Fairy Lights That Are Solar-Powered

These fairy lights are one of the easiest and most affordable ways to elevate your outdoor space. They’re lightweight, waterproof, and perhaps most impressively, powered by the sun (so you’ll never have to plug in or recharge). The lights have eight modes and a built-in memory chip that preserves your previous setting. Get yours in blue or warm white.

11

A Neck Wrap That Keeps You Cool For Hours

This cooling neck wrap works like magic: All it requires is a little bit of water and it will keep any part of your body chilled in hot temperatures — and reviewers report it stays cool for up to three hours. It’s made with soft mesh fabric that feels so good around your neck, and you can pack it up into a pocket-sized pouch when you’re not using it.

12

These Spandex Tablecloths That Don’t Budge In Wind

Your next outdoor bash won’t be complete without one of these spandex tablecloths that absolutely stay put, no matter how windy it gets. They stretch all the way to the legs of rectangular tables for a snug, seamless fit that’s always picture-perfect. You can choose from a slew of colors — think: sky blue, emerald green, plum, and more.

  • Available sizes: 4
  • Available colors: 19

13

A Portable Cornhole Set That’s Easy To Store

Ditch the screens and indulge in some old-fashioned fun with this portable cornhole set. The game pops open in seconds, revealing five holes that are ready for play. Take turns trying to land the bean bags in the netted slots to earn points, and when you’re done, collapse the set for compact storage in the carrying case.

14

These Super Cute Waterproof Pillow Covers

What good is outdoor furniture if you can’t cozy up with some throw pillows? These outdoor pillow covers are made from a durable canvas fabric that’s both waterproof and dust-resistant, and you can pair them with some pillow inserts for (almost) ready-made outdoor decor.

  • Available sizes: 6
  • Available colors: 21, including wine red, khaki, and pale green

15

This Backyard Sun Shade That Blocks UV Rays

Ward off those blazing summer rays with this sun shade that stretches over your backyard, patio, or garden to block out 95% of UV rays. It comes in colors like sand and clay red, and it features stainless steel D-rings and 5-foot ropes for fuss-free installation. It’s fade- and stain-resistant, so it’ll stand up to years of use

  • Available sizes: 13
  • Available colors: 4

16

The Waterproof Pet Bed Your Furry Friend Will Thank You For

Your pet can truly relax outdoors (and indoors) with this memory foam bed that’s 100% waterproof. The bed has a soft micro-suede top that your pet will love, and it comes in four sizes, so it’s perfect for chihuahuas and bull mastiffs alike. It even has a water-resistant non-skid base to keep it in place on your deck.

  • Available sizes: 4
  • Available colors: 2

17

A Magnetic Screen That’s Better Than A Door

Great weather means a lot more dining al fresco, but leaving the door opens makes it easy for insects to enter your home. This magnetic screen door, though, can be attached easily to your door frame, and the curtain-style design offers hands-free entry and exit. One reviewer wrote, “We removed our aluminum screen door and installed this [...] our dog really likes it and it works as advertised!”

18

The Waterproof Picnic Blanket With A Cushy Layer

No picnic is complete without this unusually comfortable outdoor blanket. The soft-to-the-touch blanket has a waterproof backing to keep out moisture and a foam layer that adds cushioning between you and the ground. The blanket is designed with a carrying handle that makes it really easy to roll up and transport. Plus, it comes in a wide range of sizes, so you can go for solo picnics or take the whole crew.

  • Available sizes: 10
  • Available colors: 11

19

A Hammock Chair That Doubles As A Swing

This hammock chair is the perfect place to relax and watch the world go by. It’s made from durable cotton that’s sturdy enough to stand up to the elements, and reviewers love it — it’s earned a 4.6-star overall rating after more than 4,000 reviews.

  • Available colors: 5

20

The Gloves That Make Gardening A Cinch

Get down and dirty in your yard with these garden gloves. The four-pack includes two regular pairs of gloves and two pairs with claws that make it easy to dig through soil without the need for additional tools. Each glove is made from a durable, puncture-resistant fabric that will protect your hands from thorns and sharp objects.

21

The Water Shoes Over 30,00 Reviewers Swear By

There’s little wonder why these water sports shoes are a hit among reviewers. They have protective rubber soles that protect your feet from rocks in rivers, coral in oceans, and hot concrete at water parks. Plus the stretchy uppers offer a snug but comfortable fit, and they come in dozens of colors and designs.

  • Available sizes: women’s 4 — 13.5
  • Available colors and patterns: 44

22

This Flameless S’mores Maker That Harkens Back To Childhood Fun

Make your favorite campfire treat — without having to go to the work of actually building a campfire — with this s’mores maker. The set includes a Sterno that provides the fire, a roasting screen, two roasting forks, and a tray for graham crackers, chocolate, and marshmallows.

23

The Patio Umbrella Light With Adjustable Brightness

Keep the BBQ shenanigans going after sundown with this patio umbrella light. It attaches to the upper part of the umbrella rod (with no tools required) and has a total of 28 LED lights that can be adjusted to your desired level of brightness. All you need is four AA batteries to use it.

24

This Big Tumble Tower Made With Waterproof Wood

Test your stacking abilities (and bring out your competitive spirit) with this extra-large tumble tower game. It’s made from sustainably sourced New Zealand pine, which is naturally waterproof, so you don’t have to worry about bringing it in when it rains. It also comes in a heavy-duty carrying case that makes for easy storage and portability.

25

The Ring Toss Game You Can Take Anywhere

You can bring this ring toss game with you just about anywhere — including the beach, park, and your friend’s backyard. It’s simple enough for kids to play, but challenging enough for adults too — just take turns trying to land the rings on the poles for a low stakes, fun-filled time.

26

These Genius Stakes That Hold Your Drinks

These drink holder stakes are a sure conversation starter, but they’re also just a great way to keep your beverage upright, even if there’s no table nearby. Made from durable steel, the stakes are about 26 inches high after being inserted into the ground and can hold cans, water bottles, cups, and even wine bottles.

27

The Outdoor String Lights That Create A Cozy Vibe

Looking for a way to give your patio an upgrade without breaking the bank? These outdoor string lights will do just the trick. The warm white lights are dimmable (perfect for setting the ambiance) and are decked out with 25 energy-saving bulbs. What’s more, they’re waterproof, so you can leave them out all year long.

  • Available sizes: 3
  • Available colors: 3

28

These Colorful Wine Glasses That Are Unbreakable

Pick up this set of unbreakable wine glasses for your next outdoor shindig, and you won’t have to stress if you drop one on the hard concrete. Made from shatterproof plastic, they’re ideal for backyard sipping, and the vibrant shades add some cheerful color.

29

An Outdoor Area Rug That Will Make Your Space More Homey

Whether you’re gathering around a small table for drinks or having a full-blown outdoor dining situation going on, this area rug is an excellent way to add a homey feel to your outdoor space. Available in colors like rust, navy, and aquamarine, the rug is easy to clean, stain-resistant, and comes in 24 shapes and sizes, so you can find one that fits your backyard perfectly.

  • Available sizes: 24
  • Available colors: 11

30

The Portable Fan You Can Take Anywhere

Get cooling relief no matter where you are with this personal fan. The rechargeable fan runs for up to 40 hours before needing to be recharged and has a dial for adjusting the airflow. You can set it upright or clip it onto any edge (like a patio table). Bonus: It also functions as a power bank, so you can charge your phone on the go.

31

The Adorable Squirrel Feeder That Looks Like A Picnic Table

If you’re a nature lover, there really is no better way to start your day than watching tiny squirrels gnawing away at a treat outside your window. The squirrel feeder is designed to look like a mini picnic table, and you can stick a corn cob on the spike to attract cute woodland creatures.

32

A Large Mosquito Net That Keeps Bites At Bay

If mosquitos are drawn to you like bees to honey, you’ll want this mosquito net in your backyard. The hanging screen is large enough to cover a hammock (and more), allowing you to get some relaxation without an insect invasion. It comes with all the equipment for hanging, as well as a carrying pouch, so you can take it on camping trips.

33

A Citronella Candle That Actually “Smells Wonderful”

If mosquito nets aren’t exactly your thing, try this patio candle instead. The hand-crafted candle is made with citronella (which pests do not like), but it also makes use of other essential oils that balance out that strong citronella scent, like lemongrass, cedarwood, and patchouli. It has a burn time of 60 hours, and reviewers say it “works perfectly” and “smells wonderful.”

34

A Connection Box That Protects Outdoor Cords From The Elements

Keep all your outdoor power cords safe and secure in this weatherproof connection box. It has a durable plastic body, a silicone weatherproof seal, and a lid that molds tightly around cords to keep out water. Available in three sizes, it’s perfect for landscape equipment, lights, power tools, and more.

35

The Inflatable Lounger That Doesn’t Require A Pump

Take outdoor chilling to the next level with this inflatable lounger with a pillow-shaped headrest. It comes in a slew of dope colors and prints, including red, navy, and floral prints, and the best part is that it doesn’t require a pump for inflation — simply wave it through the air until it takes shape, and you’re all set.

  • Available colors and prints: 16

36

A Mesh Tent That Keeps Food Safe From Tiny Intruders

Pick up this six-pack of mesh food tents before your next picnic. The simple but genius product keeps your meal protected from insects, but still allows you to see what’s inside. They collapse for easy storage, and you can also use them to shield growing plants from grasshoppers, birds, and rabbits.

37

This Spray That Protects Outdoor Furniture From Weather Damage

Keep your outdoor furniture in tip-top shape with this water and sun shield spray. It blocks UV rays to protect against fading and can even be used as a water repellent on leather and suede fabrics. One can covers an entire patio set, but note that this spray is only meant for outdoor use.

38

The Sandals That Are Like “Walking On Pillows”

Designed with extra-thick soles, these indoor-outdoor slippers provide optimal comfort and shock absorption. Plus, the flexible sandals have waterproof, non-skid soles, so they’re perfect for gardening and outdoor wear. You can get them in a handful of colors, including black, pink, and yellow.

  • Available sizes: women’s 4.5 — 13
  • Available colors: 5

39

A Portable Bluetooth Speaker In 6 Fun Colors

Enjoy some tunes or your favorite podcasts on the go with this Bluetooth speaker that comes in colors like lavender, teal, and cashmere pink. It’s 100% waterproof (it can even be submerged in water for up to 30 minutes) and has a rechargeable battery that offers up to 12 hours of continuous playtime on a full charge. It’s lightweight, compact, and includes a suction cup that attaches to smooth surfaces.

  • Available colors: 6

40

An Herb Growing Kit That Will Save You Trips To The Grocery Store

If you don’t want to run to the store for just a few sprigs of thyme, you can grow your own at home with this herb kit. It comes complete with 12 varieties of herbs, including cilantro, oregano, parsley, and the aforementioned thyme, as well as peat pellets, so they’re all ready for planting in your garden.

41

This Portable Tent So Your Pet Can Hang Outside

Heading out with your pet for a full day outdoors and want to make sure they don’t get lost? Take this pet tent along with you. The mesh enclosure is ideal for cats and small dogs and collapses for portability when you’re ready to head indoors.

42

The Wheat Straw Plates That Are Impossible To Break

Sturdier and more stylish than paper plates, these wheat straw plates are reusable and unbreakable, making them perfect for outdoor use. The set includes four plates in soft pastels, and they’re microwave-friendly and safe to use in the dishwasher.

  • Available sizes: 4

43

A Flame Color-Changer That’s Super Magical

Step up your fire pit game with this flame color changer. It’s safe to use on any wood fire, and you’re sure to be mesmerized as the flames switch from green to yellow to blue to purple. Use two packets for about 45 minutes of fun.

44

The Seating Pad That Transforms Any Bench Into A Comfy Chair

Spending hours on a hard park bench isn’t exactly my idea of fun, but this folding stadium seat makes the experience way more comfortable. It’s lightweight, waterproof, and has six reclining positions. Bonus: It has a back pocket for storing essentials. Grab yours in black, blue, or red.

45

These Grill Mats That Make Cleanup A Breeze

These grilling mats will make the BBQ process go a lot smoother since they keep food from slipping through the grates. The mats are heavy-duty but still thin enough to give you those signature grill marks on burgers and veggies. Plus, the nonstick mats are reusable and dishwasher-safe.