9 Products That Will Make You Want to Pack Your Lunch Every Day

iStock.com/Milkos
iStock.com/Milkos

You may already know why packing lunch is a smart idea: Meals made at home are often healthier and cheaper than what you’d buy around the corner from your office. The downside is that bringing your lunch requires planning, even if it’s just setting your alarm a few minutes early so you have time to toss your leftovers in a bag. But one way to motivate yourself is to buy an adult lunch box that you can get excited about. Instead of brown bagging it, check out these unisex boxes, bags, and other tools that will inspire you to pack your lunch more often.

1. Twist & Seal "Lidless" Lunch Box

Stop spending time in the morning scrambling to find a lid to match your lunch container. This lunchbox from UncommonGoods eliminates the need for a lid altogether, instead using a flexible interior sleeve to protect your food.

After loading your lunch into the box, twist the inner membrane three times and secure it with the outer strap. The container keeps your food cool for up to six hours and hot for up to four. And it prevents spills even through your bumpiest commutes.

Buy it from UncommonGoods for $25.

2. Duo Lunch Box

Few things are more disappointing than packing a beautiful salad in the morning only to find a soggy, wilted mess by lunchtime. Separating the components of your lunch is one way to keep it fresh for hours, but that can be a hassle if you don’t have spare containers or extra space in your bag. Mepal's Duo lunchbox solves this problem by acting as two lunchboxes in one.

Store leafy greens (or a sandwich) in the bottom compartment and stash wet toppings like tomatoes up top. You can also use the upper compartment to store napkins and cutlery. For liquids like salad dressing, there’s an additional mini-container that fits inside the lid. By waiting until the last minute to toss all your ingredients together, you can be sure your lunch is as fresh as possible when it’s time to eat.

Buy it from these retailers:

3. Bee’s Wrap Eco-Friendly Sandwich Wrap Set

Bee's Wrap, Amazon

This patterned plastic-wrap alternative is so pretty you may be hesitant to take it off your food. Each reusable wrap from Bee’s Wrap is made with eco-friendly beeswax and jojoba oil, both of which have natural antibacterial properties. Warm the wrap up with your hands to soften the wax and mold it around food, and then set it aside it to cool into a protective seal. Printed with illustrations of bears and bees, the wraps are washable, reusable, and, once it’s time to throw them away, compostable.

Buy it from Amazon for $21.

4. MalloMe Stainless Steel Straws

MalloMe, Amazon

Being kind to the environment doesn’t have to mean giving up your straw habit. These stainless steel straws from MalloMe are strong enough to outlast a decade’s worth of plastic straws. Each set comes straight and bent straws in three widths, adding up to six straws in total. The pack also includes soft silicon tips to protect your lips from hot or cold liquids and two brushes for heavy-duty cleaning.

Buy them from Amazon for $12.

5. Rerii Stainless Steel Travel Cutlery Set

Rerii, Amazon

Leave your home cutlery in the kitchen where it belongs. This portable set of utensils from Rerii is meant to travel to your office day after day. One set comes with a spoon, fork, and chopsticks, each made from high-quality stainless steel. The flatware is small enough to fit inside the small stainless steel tube, which can then be stored inside a fabric carrying case to stay safe in transit.

Buy it from Amazon for $13.

6. Lunch Box With Cutting Board Lid

This lunchbox is for those overachievers who can’t help showing off their culinary skills in the office kitchen. When strapped to the container with the silicone band, the bamboo piece acts as a lid. But when it’s time to unpack your lunch, it doubles as a cutting board. Use it for slicing up tomatoes for your salad or avocados for your toast. It can even work as a mini cheese and charcuterie plate if you’re want to throw an impromptu office happy hour (or just treat yourself to a very fancy desk lunch).

Buy it from UncommonGoods for $30.

7. PackIt Freezable Bento Box

PackIt, Amazon

Looking for a way to pack your lunch so it doesn’t need to be refrigerated? No problem—this container comes with a freezable sleeve that chills your food all day. Just stick the colorful bag in your freezer before you go to bed, and by morning it will be ready to act as your portable fridge. The plastic container has three separate compartments for bento-style food storage, and it’s safe for the freezer or the microwave. (If you’re looking for other ways to keep your packed lunch cold, we've got some more tips here.)

Buy it from Amazon for $15 and at these other retailers:

8. Horween Leather Lunch Bag

Oleksynprannyk, Etsy

Give yourself an incentive to pack your lunch by bringing it in a bag you’ll want to show off. While many lunch bags come in floral, feminine styles, there aren't very many that will go just as well with a suit and tie as with a sundress. This leather bag from the Etsy store OleksynPrannyk, meanwhile, would be an elegant choice for either men or women. The leather comes from the Chicago-based Horween Leather Company—one of the oldest continuously operating tanneries in the U.S. Each lunch bag is handcrafted and made to order.

Buy it from Etsy for $39.

9. Prepd Pack

Prepd, Kickstarter

A Prepd Pack has everything you need for a convenient, stylish lunch. It’s beautiful on the outside, with a slated bamboo case, and practical on the inside, with a spot for magnetic cutlery, a silicone mat that unfolds to give you a place to eat, and modular containers designed to perfectly fit into the box. One Prepd pack comes with one large container and two smaller ones that you can mix and match to store what you’re eating on any given day.

Buy it from Prepd for $69.

14 Retro Gifts for Millennials

Ravi Palwe, Unsplash
Ravi Palwe, Unsplash

Millennials were born between 1981 and 1996, which means the pop culture they grew up with is officially retro. No matter what generation you belong to, consider these gifts when shopping for the Millennials in your life this holiday season.

1. Reptar Funko Pop!; $29

Amazon

This vinyl Reptar figurine from Funko is as cool as anything you’d find in the rugrats’ toy box. The monster dinosaur has been redesigned in classic Pop! style, making it a perfect desk or shelf accessory for the grown-up Nickelodeon fan. It also glows in the dark, which should appeal to anyone’s inner child.

Buy it: Amazon

2. Dragon Ball Z Slippers; $20

Hot Topic

You don’t need to change out of your pajamas to feel like a Super Saiyan. These slippers are emblazoned with the same kanji Goku wears on his gi in Dragon Ball Z: one for training under King Kai and one for training with Master Roshi. And with a soft sherpa lining, the footwear feels as good as it looks.

Buy it: Hot Topic

3. The Pokémon Cookbook; $15

Hop Topic

What do you eat after a long day of training and catching Pokémon? Any dish in The Pokémon Cookbook is a great option. This book features more than 35 recipes inspired by creatures from the Pokémon franchise, including Poké Ball sushi rolls and mashed Meowth potatoes.

Buy it: Hot Topic

4. Lisa Frank Activity Book; $5

Urban Outfitters

Millennials will never be too old for Lisa Frank, especially when the artist’s playful designs come in a relaxing activity book. Watercolor brings the rainbow characters in this collection to life. Just gather some painting supplies and put on a podcast for a relaxing, nostalgia-fueled afternoon.

Buy it: Urban Outfitters

5. Shoebox Tape Recorder with USB; $28

Amazon

The days of recording mix tapes don’t have to be over. This device looks and functions just like tape recorders from the pre-smartphone era. And with a USB port as well as a line-in jack and built-in mic, users can easily import their digital music collection onto retro cassette tapes.

Buy it: Amazon

6. Days of the Week Scrunchie Set; $12

Urban Outfitters

Millennials can be upset that a trend from their youth is old enough to be cool again, or they can embrace it. This scrunchie set is for anyone happy to see the return of the hair accessory. The soft knit ponytail holders come in a set of five—one for each day of the school (or work) week.

Buy it: Urban Outfitters

7. D&D Graphic T-shirt; $38-$48

80s Tees

The perfect gift for the Dungeon Master in your life, this graphic tee is modeled after the cover of the classic Dungeons & Dragons rule book. It’s available in sizes small through 3XL.

Buy it: 80s Tees

8. Chuck E. Cheese T-shirt; $36-$58

80s Tees

Few Millennials survived childhood without experiencing at least one birthday party at Chuck E. Cheese. This retro T-shirt sports the brand’s original name: Chuck E. Cheese’s Pizza Time Theatre. It may be the next-best gift for a Chuck E. Cheese fan behind a decommissioned animatronic.

Buy it: 80s Tees

9. The Nightmare Before Christmas Picnic Blanket Bag; $40

Shop Disney

Fans of Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas will recognize the iconic scene on the front of this messenger bag. Unfold it and the bag becomes a blanket fit for a moonlit picnic among the pumpkins. The bottom side is waterproof and the top layer is made of soft fleece.

Buy it: Shop Disney

10. Toy Story Alien Socks; $15

Shop Disney

You don’t need to be skilled at the claw machine to take home a pair of these socks. Decorated with the aliens from Toy Story, they’re made from soft-knit fabric and are big enough to fit adult feet.

Buy it: Shop Disney

11. Goosebumps Board Game; $24

Amazon

Fans that read every book in R.L. Stine’s series growing up can now play the Goosebumps board game. In this game, based on the Goosebumps movie, players take on the role of their favorite monster from the series and race to the typewriter at the end of the trail of manuscripts.

Buy it: Amazon

12. Tamagotchi Mini; $19

Amazon

If you know someone who killed their Tamagotchi in the '90s, give them another chance to show off their digital pet-care skills. This Tamagotchi is a smaller, simplified version of the original game. It doubles as a keychain, so owners have no excuse to forget to feed their pet.

Buy it: Amazon

13. SNES Classic; $275

Amazon

The SNES Classic is much easier to find now than when it first came out, and it's still just as entertaining for retro video game fans. This mini console comes preloaded with 21 Nintendo games, including Super Mario Kart and Street Fighter II.

Buy it: Amazon

14. Planters Cheez Balls; $24

Amazon

Planters revived its Cheez Balls in 2018 after pulling them from shelves nearly a decade earlier. To Millennials unaware of that fact, this gift could be their dream come true. The throwback snack even comes in the classic canister fans remember.

Buy it: Amazon

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10 Great Gifts for Teens

Fjallraven/Polaroid
Fjallraven/Polaroid

If it’s been a few years since you were a teenager, you might be feeling at a loss when it comes to finding the perfect gift for the teen in your life. But you don’t have to worry—we’ve culled the internet to figure out what’s cool these days, and we found 10 items to suit any teen (and any price point).

1. Fjällräven Kånken Mini Classic Backpack for Everyday; $70

Fjällräven/Amazon

Fjällräven’s Kånken backpack was originally introduced in 1978 as an affordable and comfortable bag for Swedish schoolchildren, but it recently took off as a trend among American high schoolers and college students. With 43 different color options, chances are you’ll be able to find the perfect trendy backpack for the teen in your life.

Buy it: Amazon

2. Hydro Flask Standard-Mouth Water Bottle; $30–$35

Hydro Flask/Amazon

Hydro Flasks aren’t only trendy, they’re sturdy and environmentally friendly. Plus, they keep hot drinks warm and icy drinks cool for an absurdly long amount of time. The standard-mouth water bottle is currently available on Amazon in 17 different colors, but the brand also offers tumbler cups and coffee mugs depending on your niece/nephew/cousin/friend/child’s preference.

Buy it: Amazon

3. Polaroid Originals OneStep+ Bluetooth-Connected Instant Film Camera; $140

Polaroid Originals/Amazon

Teens can kick it back old school with this Polaroid camera that hides some surprisingly contemporary features. Using a special app, users can fine-tune their camera settings to suit their personal tastes. Plus, this camera makes it possible to capture two scenes in a single frame, so it's that much easier to create uniquely artsy Polaroid pics.

Buy it: Amazon

4. 4th-Generation Echo Dot with Clock; $60

Amazon

Tech-wise, the fourth-generation Echo Dot is almost identical to its third-generation predecessor. But the updated spherical design seems poised to make the Echo Dot a worthy contender for traditional alarm clocks—the speaker face shows the time and it even includes a tap-to-snooze function for drowsy sleepers.

Buy it: Amazon

5. Bubble Tea Kit; $38

Uncommon Goods

Part of the reason bubble tea is so popular is that it’s customizable—and what could be more customizable than making it yourself? This kit, made by an Atlanta-based couple, comes with two reusable straws and enough supplies to make up to eight servings.

Buy it: Uncommon Goods

6. Mixtape Card Game; $20

Uncommon Goods

This party game challenges players to find the perfect songs to suit specific prompts. Some cards might prompt players to use Spotify or Youtube to search for the songs with the best guitar solos, while other cards call for participants to play their “favorite slow dance love jam from junior high.” This game is sure to be a hit at any high school sleepover or house party—or, in true 2020 style, at any digital hangout or Zoom meeting.

Buy it: Uncommon Goods

7. Giant Flour Tortilla Throw Blanket; $18-$35

Mermaker/Amazon

This goofy double-sided blanket turns any human into a giant-size burrito, and it comes in four different sizes to suit any height. One reviewer even went so far as to say that “once you wrap yourself in it, you will be convinced that you are a burrito.”

Buy it: Amazon

8. The Cup of Destiny; $22

Shelter Harbor Press/Amazon

Here’s a prediction: Your hunt for the perfect gift is almost over. This kit is ideal for the teenager who is fascinated by the supernatural and loves exploring new ideas. Included, you’ll find a 96-page illustrated instruction book along with a cup and a saucer marked with patterns and symbols.

Buy it: Amazon

9. Wreck This Journal: Now in Color; $9

Penguin Books/Amazon

This journal is not intended to be pretty. It’s made for messiness and exploration and a little bit of chaos. Artistic-minded teens will love filling out pages that prompt them to catalog various stains or poke holes through the paper. Reviewers say it’s not only a source of creative inspiration, though—it’s also a stress reliever. And considering that the middle-school and high-school years aren’t exactly known for being relaxing, this journal could be a welcome reprieve from the daily pressure of managing homework and a social life.

Buy it: Amazon

10. Therapy Dough; $15

Uncommon Goods

Some teens focus better and relax more easily when they have something to fidget with. If the teen in your life fits that description, this therapy dough may be the perfect gift for them. Each 4.5-ounce container is infused with essential oils like lavender, eucalyptus, orange, or pine, making relaxation smell delicious (and all natural!).

Buy it: Uncommon Goods

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