43 cheap things for summer skyrocketing in popularity on Amazon

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by Christina X. Wood
Originally Published: 

Summer is finally here, and I’m heading to the beach, getting in the water, and trying to survive the heat as the forecast rapidly shifts to hot and steamy. I need a beach bag, some tricks for staying cool, and some poolside accessories. Last year, I ended up with a bag I hated and outdoor speakers that didn’t hold a charge. So this year, I went to the source of all tell-it-like-it-is product reviews on cheap gear: Amazon reviews. And that is where I uncovered these 43 cheap things for summer that are currently skyrocketing in popularity.

I quickly found what looks like the beach bag — with a built-in cooler! — and a speaker that will get me through a day at the pool. I also discovered some clever ways to stay cool, a few amazing summer beverage hacks, and some incredible ways to nap through the hottest part of the day. This is going to be a great summer because I think everyone is ready to fire up the Roaring Twenties again. You’ll be glad you stocked up on the right stuff. Do you have the right beach bag and pool lounger? Because the ones I found are, like I said, so affordable there is no need to make do with subpar accessories.

Just keep reading to stock up for your best summer, too.

1. This powerful fan for a cool breeze where you need it

Train a cool breeze right where you need it by wrapping the flexible legs of this portable fan around whatever is handy. It can also stand on your desk, and you can even shape two of the legs into a phone stand that works while the fan cools. This USB-rechargeable fan creates a powerful breeze in a small path and gets over 6,500 five-star reviews.

2. The water pitcher that makes delicious thirst quenchers

This infusion pitcher turns the flavor up while keeping you hydrated all summer. Fill the plastic inner sleeve with tea, fruit, citrus, or herbs to create flavored waters or iced tea. Keep it in the fridge and your flavored treat will stay cool for all-day sipping.

3. A light, portable hammock so you can nap in the wild

Get some fresh air while you nap with this lightweight and portable hammock. All you do is stretch it between two trees and then settle into your own private cocoon. The storage bag is attached to the hammock’s side and moonlights as a pocket for your phone and other items. And it’s light enough — just 24 ounces — to carry anywhere.

4. An inflatable lounger that’s comfortable and portable

Whether you’re camping or at the beach, this inflatable lounger is lightweight and portable enough to take with you. Best of all, you don’t need to carry a pump to inflate it. Just throw it up and catch air in the tube a few times, roll the end closed, and hop in to relax. There’s a pocket on the side to hold your water or phone and, though it looks strange, over 5,000 people love it because it’s super comfortable and makes a restful haven or a fun pool float.

5. A super fast and fun way to cut watermelon

Just shove this slicer into a watermelon and it’ll quickly transform the fruit into bite-size cubes. The metal insert cuts a trench while the spinning wheel slices the long rectangle into pieces. Reviewers say it’s a blast to use and reduces a whole watermelon to snackable pieces with astonishing speed. You also get a melon baller.

6. The beach bag that’s also a cooler

When you’re headed to the beach or pool, this two-in-one bag hauls everything you need for the day. Put your towel and book in the main compartment, place your phone and sunscreen in the side pockets, and keep your lunch and beverages chilled in the cooler on the bottom. Reviewers love the roomy bag since it can hold up to four towels, and they report the cooler is surprisingly spacious.

7. A set of roasting sticks so everyone can have their own

Whether you are roasting hot dogs over an open fire or making s’mores, this set of roasting sticks lets everyone have their own long fork for the job. The color-coding on the handle makes it easy to remember which one is yours, and the long arm gets the food right into the flames without scorching your fingers.

8. This game brings easy volleyball-style fun anywhere

Set up this Slammo net in sand or on grass and take turns spiking the ball into the net. It’s a game similar to volleyball but on a smaller scale that’s heavy on the spiking. The game sets up quickly and comes with three balls (including a larger training ball). It’s lightweight enough to tote anywhere since it comes with its own carrying bag.

9. These incense sticks keep mosquitoes away

Scent your outdoor space with this pleasant incense and keep pesky mosquitoes away, too. The DEET-free blend of citronella, lemongrass, rosemary, cedar, and peppermint oils functions as a mosquito repellent that’s harmless to humans and pets. They are a short-burn solution for when you want to sit on the deck for a coffee or phone chat without getting harassed by bugs.

10. This waterproof pouch that protects your phone at the pool

Whether you’re at the beach or on a boat, use this waterproof pouch to keep your phone on you and protected. Tuck your phone inside the clear sealed bag, which is touch-sensitive so you can still text. And when I say it’s waterproof, you can actually take photos or videos underwater. For $5, this is totally worth it to make sure your phone doesn’t get water damage.

11. This SPF 50 sunscreen to keep your face safe from rays

Here’s a broad spectrum sunscreen in a lightweight formula for your face. It’s fragrance-free, non-comedogenic, and it protects against UVA and UVB rays with SPF 50. Plus, this water-resistant sunscreen contains vitamin E, an antioxidant that can reduce UV damage to the skin. It’s affordable, too, which is hard to find in a good sunscreen.

12. This portable speaker with a strap that grips anywhere

Play your favorite music anywhere with this portable Bluetooth speaker that attaches nearly anywhere with a strap. The back strap unbuttons so you can attach it to your backpack, beach chair, bike handlebar, and more. It runs for five hours on a single charge, and it’s waterproof so you can even use it in the shower.

13. These ice pop molds that turn anything into dessert

Turn leftover smoothies, yogurt, juice, or anything else into ice pops using these silicone molds. Just pour the liquid into the six molds, freeze, and soon you’ll have a refreshing treat. The tops have built-in sticks, and the mold is flexible for easy release. These will keep you cool and happy all summer.

14. This glass bottle that keeps you on track for daily hydration

This borosilicate glass bottle will help you keep you hydrated all day with time markers on the side. You’ll also appreciate a strainer in the lid that allows you to flavor your water with fruit or herbs. The bamboo screw top and neoprene koozie with a carry loop protect this bottle that’s both beautiful and functional.

15. These zappers that turn fly chasing into a sport

When a fly gets in the house, you will quickly arm up and go to battle with this rechargeable zapper on hand. Swing this racket like you’re trying to hit a tennis ball, and the flies will soon be gone. The bugs won’t like it as much as you do because they get zapped by the electrified racket. It also has a built-in flashlight for tracking down stealthy bugs at night.

16. This set of stemless wine glasses that won’t break

These stemless wine glasses are made of stainless steel, so they’re more durable for outdoor drinking. Unlike glass, they won’t ruin the vibe by shattering during a pool party. And even better, the insulated walls of the cups keep beverages cold for hours on summer days. Each of the glasses comes with a lid so you can sip without spilling, too.

17. These blind-spot mirrors improve your visibility

Stay safe on your summer road trip with these wide-angle mirrors that help prevent blind spots. Simply stick them on your car’s door mirrors, and the wider view will make changing lanes feel safer. They get over 3,600 five-star reviews for opening up the view of the road for drivers of all sorts of vehicles.

18. A compact coffee maker for cold brew or tea

Keep your fridge stocked with a batch of refreshing cold brew or iced tea using this glass pitcher. Just fill the inner filter with coffee grounds or tea leaves, add water, and refrigerate. This carafe is designed to fit in a fridge door and keeps up to six cups of cold brew fresh for two weeks.

19. This safety razor for closer and more eco-friendly shaves

This beautiful razor performs better than disposable ones and quickly pays for itself. It saves money by eliminating the high cost of replacement blades since you can purchase a 100-pack of long-lasting safety razor blades for seven dollars. And with a bit of practice, this angled blade will deliver the closest shave you can get. Plus, this completely plastic-free shave is better for the planet.

20. This collapsible dog bowl to keep your pup hydrated on the go

Whether you and your canine sidekick are hiking, picnicking, or just going on a long walk, this collapsible dog bowl will make it easier to keep them hydrated on hot days. The tear-resistant silicone bowl is available in two sizes and comes attached to a carabiner with a water bottle holder. When you get back home, it’s easy to wash and even dishwasher safe.

21. A set of mason jar mugs with spill-proof lids

From fruit-infused water to cocktails and frozen drinks, this mason jar mug set was made for summer. Each set includes six mugs with handles and tightly sealing lids so you can easily take your drinks from the kitchen to the patio (or to the beach or park). This set is also available in an option that features straws for even more convenience.

22. The pillows that are designed to keep you cool

On those scorching summer days and nights, these pillows can help bring cooling relief. They’re filled with down-alternative polyester that’s also gel-infused to create a cooling effect — and each is lined with cotton, making them breathable. Thanks to the 250-thread count, they’re also smooth. You can choose from two sizes: queen and king.

23. A floating drink tray for fun pool time

When you’re headed for the pool or other summer fun, keep refreshing drinks close with this inflatable drink holder. The tray keeps four beverages upright and has pockets for your phone or other items. Side handles let you pull the tray along with you or use them to attach the tray to your pool float. Reviewers are using this tray for tubing, pool lounging, and hanging out in the hot tub.

24. These portable sunscreen sticks that fit in your pocket

Reapplying sunscreen throughout the day is easy with this pocket-sized sunscreen stick you can take anywhere. The solid formula applies as easily as lip balm and protects with SPF 30. Just rub it over your nose, face, lips, or anywhere else you need broad-spectrum protection from the sun.

25. An affordable shade for the entire patio

Protect everyone — and the plants — from the harsh sun by hanging this shade sail on the patio. It attaches easily to a building or tree, creates a shaded area underneath, and won’t blow over like an umbrella. It’s also small, portable, and easy enough to install that you could use it to shade a campsite or picnic area. Over 6,000 people rate it five stars.

26. A compact grill cleaner that you can use on any grill

This clever tool might look like a sheriff’s badge, but it actually scrapes grill grates clean. The notches are designed to fit four different grill sizes so you can scrape off the crud. Best of all, it’s compact so you can properly clean a grill even if you’re camping or on vacation. And unlike a wire brush, this sturdy stainless steel cleaner won’t shed bristles into the grill or food.

27. A bag that carries and insulates your water bottle & more

Carry all your walking or hiking necessities hands-free with this bag. The neoprene pocket holds and insulates a water bottle, and reviewers report it comfortably fits even a large 25-ounce bottle. A side pocket has a clip for keys and two zippered sections can hold your phone, credit card, sunscreen, snacks, or dog treats. And two straps allow you to wear the bag over the shoulder, crossbody style, or as a tote.

28. A fan favorite blender for smoothies on the go

If washing the jar is the thing that keeps you from making smoothies, you need this personal blender with a blender jar that’s also a to-go cup. It comes with a travel-friendly lid, and this smoothie cup fits in any cup holder. As for cleaning, both the jar and lid are conveniently dishwasher-safe. The blender itself is small enough to fit even in a tiny kitchen and is a popular one with nearly 15,000 reviews.

29. This cup holder extender accommodates large bottles

Use this extender to make any bottle or cup — even a large one — fit in your car’s cup holder. Just drop it into your existing cup holder, and the wider top accommodates a 36-ounce YETI Rambler and other large bottles. The base is adjustable to fit standard cup holders that may vary in size depending on the car. It’s such a simple upgrade that works, so no wonder it’s highly rated with nearly 7,000 reviews.

30. This hair removal powder that won’t leave razor bumps

If you loathe shaving and the bumpy ingrown hairs that follow, try this razorless shaving powder that removes hair without razor bumps. Mix the powder with water, slather it on for a few minutes, and then remove the paste along with your hair. People with sensitive skin are raving about this stuff in the comments, and reviewers give it over 14,000 five-star reviews.

31. This no-touch tool opens doors & pushes buttons

If you’d rather not touch public door handles or other high-touch surfaces — and these days who does? — use this no-touch tool to keep your hands germ-free. Its multipurpose design pushes buttons when checking out at the grocery store or using an elevator button, and the hook end opens doors. The stylus end even works with touchscreens. And this key-shaped tool attaches to a keychain so you can keep the accessory handy.

32. Create starry night ambiance anywhere with this light

Set a cozy mood anywhere with this tiny projector that illuminates with starry lights. It’s rechargeable via USB, so you can use it at home or even while camping or dining outside. The gooseneck arm bends in any direction, and you can choose from seven colorful modes.

33. A knife that cuts perfect crinkle cut fries

If you love crinkle-cut fries, you need this knife that cuts potatoes into the iconic wavy shape. The stainless steel blade is coated in titanium for extra strength, and the handle is designed for a non-slip grip. The wavy blade also cuts its shape into carrots, cucumbers, apples, and other fruits and vegetables. It’s great for making pickles or cutting flashy vegetable plates, too.

34. This big air fryer that will make all the dinners fast

For fast dinners on hot summer nights, skip the oven and cook everything in this air fryer. Its smaller footprint has two main advantages: it cooks food quickly and won’t heat up the whole kitchen. The machine circulates hot air to cook everything from chicken to zucchini, and the non-stick surface easily wipes clean. The basket holds a full quart of food, the dials are easy to read, and the mint color will look terrific on your counter.

35. This ice cream bowl set that’s perfect for parties

These fun ice cream bowls and spoons are perfect for summer, but honestly, you’ll probably want to use them year-round. Made from durable, BPA-free plastic, the bowls and spoons are designed to look like sugar cones with bright pink, green, purple, and blue accents. Each bowl can hold a large scoop of ice cream — with room for toppings, of course.

36. These shredder claws that quickly pull apart meat

Upgrade to these meat claws to pull apart pork and other meat with ease and speed. Use them to securely pick up a whole bird or pork loin, and then use them to pull apart your cooked brisket, pork butt, or poultry. Reviewers give them almost 5,000 five-star reviews, and they’ll soon become an indispensable tool for your summer barbecues.

37. This tap that turns a watermelon into a cocktail dispenser

Turn a pool day into a party with this tap kit that turns a watermelon into a keg. The spout is a fun and convenient way to turn any watermelon, pumpkin, or other big fruit into an on-tap cocktail bowl. Hollow out the watermelon, use the provided coring tool to cut a hole in the side, insert the tap, and fill the rind with your favorite summer quencher. People can pour their own drinks and at the end of the party, you can just toss the watermelon rind into the compost bin.

38. A big beach sand proof blanket that’s easy to carry

This highly durable blanket is perfect for beach days this season because it’s sandproof, waterproof, and windproof. That’s right, sand won’t stick to the Oxford cloth, so this blanket won’t track sand all the way back home. It’s big enough to seat four and stays put thanks to built-in sand pockets and stakes for each corner. If your picnic is hit with rain, this will also work as a tarp.

39. This summer hat that plays music & takes calls

Summer days are better with the right playlist, and this cap’s Bluetooth speaker lets you listen anywhere hands-free. There are easily adjustable controls on the side of the hat, and there’s even a built-in microphone so you can take calls. The hat’s bill provides sun protection, and it’s waterproof so feel free to wear it to the pool or beach.

40. This mint-flavored disc that freshens breath & alleviates dry mouth

Refresh your mouth on the go with these slightly-sweet discs designed to alleviate mouth dryness and halitosis. The disc adheres to your gum line and slowly melts, releasing a natural sweetener that can help stimulate saliva flow. Each disc can last for hours, providing long-lasting moisture without interrupting your summer fun.

41. A 7-by-4-foot towel that’s perfect for beach days

With dimensions of 7 by 4 feet, this extra-large towel is ideal for lounging at the beach during those sunny summer days. It’s lightweight as well as easy to carry around in a beach bag, and the microfiber material is quick-drying as well as extra-absorbent. Plus, it’s available in three striped colors.

42. These fast-drying towels for the beach, gym, or pool

This technical microfiber towel is especially absorbent, lighweight, and quick-drying for any outdoor adventure or gym session. It’s small enough to carry in a beach bag or backpack and comes in a slick storage box that keeps the towel germ-free. The towel dries you quickly and then dries itself in just a few minutes. The plant-dyed towel won’t get mildewy in its storage box, which features a loop for convenient carrying.

43. Stay cool with this cute snow cone maker

All you need is ice and flavored syrup to make your own snow cones with this machine. Its stainless steel blades quickly churn ice into soft snow so you can enjoy the refreshing treat all summer. Add a tasty syrup, juice, or even a cocktail mix to make custom snow cones. The retro design only adds to its appeal.

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