hot stuff

Back-to-School Cool

Check out these smart, stylish and oh-so-cool products for the back-to-school crew

Clothes minded

Tea Collection’s fun and functional clothing sets are perfect for school days – they look as awesome as they feel. For the boys, find cool graphic tees to top over extra-comfy, sporty pants. For the girls, layer a bright and cheery dress over soft leggings. Get ’em locally at Tiny Ptarmigan, tinyptarmigan.com.

Pack it all

The Five Star Expandable Backpack has multiple expanding sections that open like luggage to give you up to seven inches of extra storage space. Carry and manage all your textbooks, notebooks and other school supplies. Plus, you can pull items out easily while it is hanging up. Available locally at Office Depot or visit fivestardirect.us.

Safari lunch pack

Food and drinks stay cool with the phthalate- and BPA-free Insulated Lunch Backpack from Marcus and Marcus. It features a zipped mesh interior pocket for ice packs and a comfortable rubber zipper grip for small hands. Available in Marcus the Lion, Ollie the Elephant, or Lola the Giraffe. Visit marcusnmarcus.com.

Pack a snack

Perfect for adding to lunch boxes or as an after-school snack, Sabra Hummus To Go with Pretzels pack a quick burst of fresh flavor for an on-the-go taste adventure. The single-serve, portable cups are available in three flavors – Classic, Roasted Red Pepper and Roasted Garlic – and offer the authentic hummus flavor your family will love paired with pretzels for quick, easy dipping. Available at local grocery stores, or visit sabra.com.

Banish lunch waste

Ziploc bags, wrappers, and other types of disposable containers are costly and wasteful, especially when parents are packing school lunches for their children every day. Russbe Reusable Snack/Sandwich Bags and Bento Boxes are 100 percent reusable, available in a variety of colors and patterns, and made to withstand day-to-day use. Dishwasher safe, environmentally friendly, and free of harmful BPA, PVC, latex and phthalate. Visit russbe.com.

Cuddly case

When was the last time you hugged a pencil case? The zip-up Yoobi Fuzzy Pencil Case is awesomely soft, and full of friendly fuzzy dreadlocks. Organize pencils, markers, erasers, crayons, paperclips, secret decoder rings – you name it. (Go ahead, Mom, pack ’em with lipstick, mascara, etc. – makes a great cosmetics bag too!) Yummy-soft, and available in many colors. Plus, when you buy, Yoobi gives: For every Yoobi item you purchase, a Yoobi item will be donated to a classroom in need, right here in the U.S. Available locally at Target or visit yoobi.com.

What’s lurking in your kid’s lunchbox?

The General Purpose Cloth from e-cloths is made out of millions of tiny fibers and is clinically proven to remove over 99 percent of bacteria, as well as, heavy dirt, grease and anything else that you might find under the lid of your kid’s lunchbox, using just water! Plus, they are guaranteed to last for 300 machine washes, saving you time, energy and money. Healthy cleaning is an added bonus! With e-cloth parents can have peace of mind that they are not contaminating their kids’ food with harsh chemicals. Available at ecloth.com.

Rockin’ for school

Hot Dots Jr. Pete the Cat Kindergarten Rocks! is going to get kids rockin’ and schoolin’. Inspired by the beloved Pete the Cat children’s book series, this set provides 200+ lessons on a variety of subjects such as reading, math, science, social studies and more. It includes two spiral-bound activity card sets, an all-new Pete the Cat–Your Groovin’ Schoolin’ Friend pen, reward stickers, and an award certificate for little learners who are ready to advance to the next level. For ages 5 years +. Available locally at Over the Rainbow Toys or visit educationalinsights.com.

Fresh gear

Go chemical-free and keep all that school and sports gear smelling fresh with remodeez. These smart, safe, non-toxic, effective and odorless products come in four handy sizes (home, footware, travel and auto). The product uses activated charcoal derived from coconut husks to absorb odor at the source. Hypoallergenic and chemical-free, remodeez last for up to one year and may be placed in the sun as needed to recharge. Place the sleek, colorful products in your kids’ backpacks, athletic shoes, gym bags and luggage. Available at Target or visit remodeez.com.

Storage solution

Low on closet storage space in your child’s room or dorm? Consider the Closet Maximizer. Featuring four shelves and an adjustable, double-hang rod, the system takes 30 minutes to install and requires no tools. Create additional storage outside of the closet with Decorative Storage units, which come with full-backers and robust outer frames. Available in a variety of sizes and colors, they can be customized with fabric bins. For a retailer near you, visit closetmaid.com.