Best Anti-Theft Briefcase – Travelon Messenger Bag

The stylish Heritage Collection Anti-Theft messenger bag from Travelon has a large compartment on the inside without being too bulky of a bag.

Travelon Anti-theft Heritage Briefcase Messenger Bag
  • Canvas. Imported.
  • 3″ high. 11.5″ wide.
  • Roomy main compartment with padded pocket for a laptop to 15.6 inch.
  • A zippered RFID blocking pocket.
  • Zippered organizer compartment with 2 open top wall pockets.

It is comfortable to wear either slung over the shoulder or to carry as an underarm satchel since the shoulder strap can be easily unhooked (but there is no top handle like a traditional briefcase).

I especially liked the front flap that conceals a pocket, but also that the main compartment has a quick-access zipper so you don’t have to fumble around with the flap in a hurry.

A narrow third pocket is ideal to hold coins, keys, passport, or other small items. Most important is that the pocket is RFID-protected meaning that you can store credit cards or other valuable devices like phones that are safe from hackers.

A side pocket holds water bottles or small umbrellas without taking up valuable space inside the bag. The durable cotton, canvas, and suede fabric looks more expensive than it really is and while it is not waterproof, it does not stain easily from being exposed to rain or moisture.

The bag is generously sized on the interior, and it fits easily into all airline carry-on bag sizers. It slides nearly underneath the seat in front of you or on top of a rollaboard bag in the overhead bin.

While the bag is not large enough to stuff a change of clothes inside, it does make a great day bag. It comes in different colors and can hold all sizes of laptops plus a stash of newspapers, magazines, and tablet without being too bulky.

The Travelon logo is quite discreet in the bottom corner. The Heritage Collection Anti-Theft messenger bag from Travelon is both attractive and important for modern travelers concerned about data theft. It retails for $80 on the Travelon website or on Amazon.

Best Stylish Headphones – Wraps CORE Wristband

Traditional in their function as headphones, Wraps has taken the added step of making them stylish enough to something that can be worn on your wrist.

The Wraps CORE Wristband Headphones come in a variety of colors so that they fit into one’s personal preference and fashion style. But, don’t let it be confused that this is just an aesthetic piece.

Wraps WRAPSCBLK-V15M Wristband Headphone
  • Convenient to carry wherever you go.
  • Lanyard-style nylon cord housing keeps wires neat and untangled.
  • Move the slider up, wrap cords around wrist and Push jack plug into slider.
  • 10MM dynamic driver gives you exceptional sound quality.
  • Comes with a universal one button mic, making it easier to use.

Wraps CORE wristband headphones have titanium speakers with idealized sound quality and noise-isolating foam tips to be both comfortable in your ears while also reducing excess noise.

This all comes from a set of headphones that is not priced out of most peoples’ pockets.

There is also a universal microphone button so that the headphones can be used to make or respond to phone calls when plugged into a phone. It is also convenient to put music or audio on pause at the touch of a button.

Business travelers will appreciate the few extra inches of storage space in their bags since the headphones can be wrapped around one’s wrist. And the headphones look just like a normal bracelet when wrapped around your wrist.

It even tucked neatly underneath my jacket sleeve so was hardly noticeable as an accessory.

Wearing them around your wrist also helps to keep them from getting tangled easily putting them into immediate ease of use when needed. I hate having a knot in my headphones when pulling them from my bag.

They come in a variety of styles including wooden beads and leather coils, which really makes them look like attractive bracelets. There are also different color pairings like black cord with either gold or black ear buds.

The sound quality is actually quite decent, which is a plus at this price point.

The CORE headphones retail for about $70 on the Wraps website and are a convenient addition to any space-constrained travel bag.

Best Reusable Travel Bottle From Eco Vessel Reviewed

While I don’t typically travel with reusable water bottles, perhaps I should start. Eco Vessel provides a great metal bottle that is easy to clean and great to maintain the temperature (hot or cold) of its contents.

Eco Vessel Boulder Triple-Insulated Stainless Steel Water Bottle
196 Reviews
Eco Vessel Boulder Triple-Insulated Stainless Steel Water Bottle
  • BPA-free triple-insulated stainless steel water bottle.
  • Beverages stay cold for 36 hours and hot for 12 hours.
  • Wide mouth for ice cubes and easy filling; drinking spout for easy sipping.
  • Removable mesh strainer basket for tea or use as an ice dam.
  • Made from premium grade, 100% recyclable stainless steel.

Sure, plastic water bottles are easy to reuse once or twice, but the steel and insulated surface of this bottle make it great for travel. For starters, there is a small metal frame at the top that allows you to fill it with things like ice to keep drinks extra cool (although the insulation does that for you already).

Also unique is the strainer inside that makes it easy to use for tea or adding fruit or other flavors to your water or iced tea.

What struck me most about this container is that it works equally well with both hot and cold beverages. You can take it to picnics, ball game cookouts, or all-day barbecues with something cold, and easily fill it with coffee or hot water the next day.

I do really detest when security folks get really picky about empty water bottles (there are lots of them that take them away even if there are a few visible drops inside).

Part of the reason why I keep refillable water bottles with me is that I want to make sure I am drinking enough water each day.

A secure, screw-top lid protects the inside contents from spilling into your bags. Since the bottle is steel, there is less environmental concern from plastic being refilled and exposed to heat.

Plus, the container is triple-insulated to keep drinks either hot or cold and can fit in most car cup containers.

The Eco Vessel is hand washable and sells for around $27 (depending upon the size) on the Eco Vessel website or Amazon.

It fits easily into any backpack or briefcase side pocket and is ideal for the business traveler looking for the container that best fits their drink of choice no matter what the temperature.

Best Daily Defense Lotion From Ursa Major

Let me start this review by saying I hate the way sunscreen feels on my face. It feels icky and makes me rather hot in the sunlight. I do know how important it is to wear it though (both for skin protection, but also its anti-aging qualities), and I often revert to using aerosol suntan lotion because it does not feel as sticky on my skin.

Force Field Daily Defense Lotion SPF 18 1.7 oz by Ursa Major
  • Provides deep, long-lasting hydration.
  • Strengthens skin’s natural barrier.
  • UV -Soothes irritated skin and reduces redness.
  • Increases firmness and elasticity.
  • Minimizes the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles and dark spots.

So it was a bit of a concern to test out the Ursa Major Force Field Daily Defense Lotion, but to my surprise, it was lightweight and not at all sticky on my face.

I used it for the first time while in French Polynesia where the humidity could have easily made it feel uncomfortable.

Ursa Major products are wide-ranging from sunscreen to skin moisturizers and individually wrapped face wash cloths that exfoliate and clean skin, which are perfect for frequent travelers.

Almost everything is naturally derived unlike most of the chemical sunscreens available in stores, which can include toxins like parabens and sulfates.

One of the key ingredients in this lotion is the plant stem cell extract that are cleaner and more suitable for beauty products.

The sunscreen is also a great facial moisturizer for frequent travelers as it is unscented and can keep skin from becoming too dry after hours and hours in an aircraft cabin.

The sunscreen has an SPF of 18 to keep out the majority of UVA and UVB rays, and it absorbs quickly into your skin.

Certainly, if you plan on swimming, it could make sense to reapply regularly, but many people don’t understand the importance of sunscreen for non-recreational activities like being outdoors for a social function or even dining in a streetside café.

The lotion can help to strengthen the skin barrier while stimulating cell regeneration and improving the overall skin tone and elasticity.

A TSA-friendly 1.7oz bottle retails for $54, which is not cheap, but the benefits are notable over the cheaper chemical versions easily available. It is also available on Amazon.

My favorite product from Ursa Major is the travel-sized facial wipe that retails for $24 for a travel bag of 20, but when spending time in the sun, this sunscreen will be prominent on my radar screen.

Best Auto Stove Shut Off Device – Fire Avert

If you’re a fan of the TV program Shark Tank, you might be already familiar with this item, which was pitched on the program (and clearly succeeded). Its primary purpose is to connect with your smoke alarm and immediately shut down the stove and oven’s power if smoke is detected.

Fire Avert Electric Auto Stove Shut-off Safety Device
5 Reviews
Fire Avert Electric Auto Stove Shut-off Safety Device
  • Plug-in ready.
  • FireAvert is activated by your smoke alarm.
  • Your home will be protected from stove fires in minutes.
  • FireAvert will automatically cut power to your stove.
  • Installs in less then 10 minutes.

FireAvert plugs into the back of your stove and does not require any type of regular fee (like an alarm system) or even batteries. It simply plugs into your power system. Some alarm systems are triggered by loud noise, but FireAvert is not, which is yet another benefit of it.

The device only responds to the unique sound of your fire alarm.

One critique of fire alarms are that they respond too easily, but the FireAvert has a 30-second delay to adjust for quick cloud puffs of an overheated microwavable popcorn bag or frying an egg.

This device really makes me feel secure. That’s not because I am a regular cook, but because I travel almost constantly that I have rented my condo to long-term residents.

This means that I have one more layer of security that protects me from any concern of the building getting mistakenly burned down.

Three cheers for the little guy scoring a huge success on Shark Tank and bringing this unique product to the market. Whether it is for daily chefs or long-term travelers relying on AirBnb or others to keep their stoves active, this makes a great holiday gift.

The FireAvert retails for $150 on the company website or on Amazon.

Best English Shaving Oil: Somersets [Maximum Tough] Stubble

Frequent travel can certainly take its toll on your skin, so much so that I resort to not shaving daily unless it is necessary for a meeting. Dry cabin air and foreign climates can wreak havoc, which is why I have started using the Bliss Micro Magic Microderm Abrasion Treatment as part of my travel ritual.

Somersets Tough Stubble English Shaving Oil
  • Razor glides more comfortably across the face.
  • Natural plant and essential oil that is meant to lubricate your skin.
  • The oil contains a blend of chamomile, tea tree and primrose.
  • Its ingredients are 100% natural.
  • The bottle fits within the TSA guidelines.

When it is time to shave (I use am electric razor), I have found that Somersets English Shaving Oil is great with my skin for smoothing the glide of the razor. At first, I was worried that it would clog my razor, but there is no foam or icky residue.

It means that the razor glides more comfortably across my face (especially when it has been a few days in between shaves). That is in part to the moisturizing, natural plant and essential oil that is meant to lubricate your skin for an extra-close shave.

The oil containing a blend of chamomile, tea tree and primrose is supposed to reduce razor bumps, in-grown hair, and irritation, which is especially helpful for those with heavy, thick stubble. Its ingredients are 100% natural with no harsh chemicals that can leave your face feeling itchy or dry.

The bottle comes in a small container (half an ounce) that fits within the TSA guidelines and can last for quite awhile on long journeys given that each shave only needs three small drops for effective coverage. Even after shaving, the remaining oil continues to soothe your skin.

A blast of cooling menthol is just the icing on the cake. One thing that really gets me is shaving and then walking outside on a hot day as it can be really uncomfortable, but the menthol in this oil really helped. Both facial washes and shaving oils retail for $15 on Somersets website or on Amazon.

Airweave Portable Team USA Mattress Topper

Nothing could be more important for a frequent traveler than a sound night’s sleep. After nights in different hotel beds, pillows of different thickness, airplane seats (sometimes barely reclined), and jet lag effects galore, the Airweave portable mattress topper really saves the day.

The Japanese company is known for its mattresses and mattress pads for their superior quality and airfiber core meaning there are no springs inside. The mattress is composed of mostly air surrounded by a protective core so it really is like sleeping on cloud nine, not a foam surface. That must be why the company was chosen to provide its 8.5 inch-thick mattress pads to top Team USA athletes during the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.

The company also provided them to athletes at the Sochi Olympics, and close to 33 percent of the medaling athletes were members of Olympic Teams to which airweave supplied mattress toppers! Airweave also supplies mattress toppers to performers at the Paris Opera Ballet School and The Royal Ballet School in London. Many luxury hotels swear by them, and first and business class passengers on Japan Airlines slumber atop them inflight.

The portable mattresses insured that athletes were well rested for competition, which is good enough reason for me as a frequent business traveler to try it out. The air fiber core rebounds quickly to your body’s movement. I do not move a lot when I sleep, but I do tend to get pain in my neck and back if sleeping incorrectly. This mattress topper proved the perfect remedy to that problem.

As someone who carries rollaboards on the plane instead of checking, this was a bit more of a challenge, but the topper comes in a sleek travel bag that is easy to put on top of my rolling bag and fits behind other bags in the overhead bin. When I get to the hotel, I simply unravel it on top of the existing mattress since it is a lengthy topper fit for a queen bed.

A cool feature of this mattress topper is that it has two sides; one side is firm while the other is soft, and you can flip it for your preferred option. When you’re finished using it, you simply roll it back up and place it in the carrying duffel.

Airweave offers those interested in trying it out a 60-day trial period to decide if they like it. As someone who often gets hot when I sleep, the air fiber core helps to prevent that. Your body heat often seeps into the mattress, but with the air fiber core of the Airweave, it simply passes through, which is a huge plus for me.

The breathable and lightweight material make this a pleasure to rest on while also carrying it around during your travels. Airweave says that the body temperature regulation benefit of its mattresses is one of the most popular features, and I would have to agree.

The ergonomic mattress toppers are only 8.5 inches thick and come in various bed sizes. The Team USA topper costs $1,300 for the queen-sized model and is available on the Airweave website with free shipping. Other Airweave mattresses and topper sizes and widths are available on Amazon.

Hot Logic Mini

I admit it. I am not a professional chef. Ok, I even have a hard time boiling water, but when it comes to traveling, I do try to focus on my diet and control as much of that process as I can. That means that when you travel to certain destinations it might be easier to carry some of your own food.

My latest kick is quinoa and farro, which I am able to magically prepare and make more delicious with black beans and sriracha sauce. But, somehow it does not carry quite well in my briefcase. Of course, I cannot travel overseas on long distances with food. Customs difficulties would certainly come into play, but on quick trips, the Hot Logic Mini heater is a great tool to use in a hotel room that does not have a microwave.

It takes less than an hour to heat my refrigerated food so it means that I have to travel with a cooler to keep my masterpiece cool, and then when I get to my hotel, I can plug in the device to heat it. While I often stay at hotels like Embassy Suites or Residence Inn that have refrigerators and microwaves, it sure does make life easier to travel with your own cooler/heater, but that is only practical on short trips when the food can stay viable.

Another unique feature of the Hot Logic Mini that I found for longer trips is to fold it up and to stuff into a checked bag (or a corner of my carry-on bag) and use it to reheat leftovers from fancy, long client dinners where lots of yummy food might otherwise go wasted. We wouldn’t want that now, would we?

I can leave the food in the Hot Logic Mini for the entire day and then reheat it later in the evening to safely dine on leftovers. As long as the container is sealed, there is no odor that leaks out. The option to begin heating food at night and enjoy it for breakfast is especially appealing when I have to get up for super early flights before the restaurant opens. If you give it enough time overnight, it can heat something that is completely frozen.

This device heats with 45 watts and can work with an adapter in a car if required, and since I always travel with a converter due to mostly international travel, this remains a useful device. While we cannot travel with our own ovens, this is the next best thing for those that like to travel with their own pre-made meals on short trips or those that like to reheat meals on longer trips that are specific to their liking and schedule.

The bag is crafted from nylon and has a heating feature on the bottom, but has no problem passing through security. Those that use it as a cooler bag can make use of the carry handle for more efficient use, but there is no worry to carry it on board since even at the highest heat it is not dangerous enough to cause any problem.

To be fair, I was not exactly sure the limitations of this bag, but I had no problems using it in multiple circumstances. It was nice to have that type of reheating capability that is convenient for the frequent traveler and could be especially popular for airline crew. It retails for around $40 on the Hot Logic Mini website or on Amazon.

Instavit Vitamin and Energy Sprays

Constant travel takes its toll on your mind, spirit, and skin. There are lots of products on the market to replenish and rejuvenate, but Instavit Vitamin and Energy Sprays really caught my eye.

I liked that they were so small that they easily squeezed into my TSA-approved liquid travel bags. But, I also liked the fact that I could slip them into my pocket to use in my hotel room or even when I am walking around or heading into a meeting.

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