Travel light on your next beach trip with these smart essentials

NASA Strength Sun Hat, left, Spiker drink holders, Miists Hair Spray and Sun Screen, top right, CleverMade cooler.
(Hammacher; Spiker Company; Miists; CleverMade)

Heavyweight ideas. Lightweight gear. Here are some great items for your next beach journey:

Cool idea

Would you like some sand with your drink? We thought not. So just spike it — not with booze, but with the Spiker Sand Drink Holder.

The bottom half of this 8-inch-tall, 4-inch-diameter cup holder uses four integrated slats to anchor it into the sand and keep the cup away from the grains.

The Spiker is just the right size for a beer or soda, and it can also hold your miscellany — keys, sunglasses, etc.


Liquid space

Miists Personal Care Sprays stash unobtrusively pretty much anywhere.

Tubes and bottles and cans can weigh you down. To avoid this, there are Miists, 3½-by-2¼-by-¼-inch-thick polypropylene flask-like rectangles filled with liquid travel essentials. A recessed pump at the top delivers the goods.

Among the products: insect repellent, burn and bite soother, hand sanitizer, stain remover, fabric-wrinkle-releaser, lens and screen cleaner and more. None leaked when I tested them. You get about 150 sprays from each .37-ounce “bottle,” depending on use.

Soft sides

CleverMade SnapBasket Cooler has cloth handles at both ends, folds for easy storage and has an integrated aluminum bottle opener.

Those heavy, hard-sided coolers? Say so long. New SnapBasket Collapsible Cooler, a soft-sided model, rises from nearly flat to a sturdy four-walled wonder with just a tug on the steel-reinforced rim.

A well-placed poke and push release the snap-hinges, letting the cooler collapse to less than 3 inches thick.

SnapBasket, weighing in at less than 2 pounds, has long double carry straps for toting as well as strong padded handles for hoisting when the 30-liter cooler is filled with up to 50 cans of soda (or whatever).

Sun? None

The new NASA Strength Desert Sun Cap, left, and Sun Hat with neck strap.

A newfangled sun hat uses shiny coated reflective material to deflect UV waves instead of attracting them. It also repels heat by reflecting the rays away from the head.

The NASA Strength Sun Hat (its technology was developed to protect astronauts) is a lightweight, breathable nylon hat with a reflective film covering the crown and the 360-degree semi-rigid brim.

A slim elastic band at the temple adjusts for tightness, making this a one-size-fits-most item. A long wide nylon flap hangs down the to protect the neck.