Category: Gear

The new 4moms Breeze play yard is worth marking your calendar for now!

With four kids, all of whom slept for many years in a play yard, I’ve seen and owned my fair share. So when Cool Mom Picks got the exclusive first look at this new play yard from the inventive company 4moms, I was pretty skeptical it would top all the good choices already out there. Now let me say, it’s worth marking your calendar for the launch, because it’s just that cool. The new 4moms Breeze is probably the most intuitive play yard (or playpen – does that make me old skool?) I’ve ever seen. With just one push...

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Bloom strollers blend neon with zen and it totally works

I’ve often wondered why strollers don’t come with headlights. (Seriously, I think about such things.) Well, my wish has actually come true. The new Zen stroller from Bloom comes with–you guessed it–a headlight. But that’s only one of the very cool and clever design features on this futuristic-looking buggy. The new Zen stroller from Bloom is definitely one of the more eye-catching baby-carting mechanisms I’ve seen. And this comes from a mama who’s pushed her kids in some big name, SUV-sized strollers. Part of the notice me-ness is due in part to the acid bright colors in the CMYK...

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Bakfiets – Bikes for you and your brood

Let me tell you why I’m Bakfiet crazy: when I had kids, I really wanted to keep up my exercise routine and just have them fall in line. I got a double jogger, which was great. But I really wanted to bike with the kids in tow, I just didn’t feel super comfortable putting them in a bike trailer behind me. I wanted them to be within reach, just in case–and now I realize that the solution was here all along. I fell in love with the Babboe Bakfiets at first sight. It’s a Dutch import but I became acquainted...

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The 2012 Flite of the Bumbleride

We love Bumbleride strollers and gear. We’ve featured their stuff quite a bit because it is consistently fresh looking with updated features, colors and the kinds of accessories that actually get used. Plus their customer service is just–well, nice! Back in 2010, we reviewed the Bumbleride Flite, and were really impressed with what we saw. Now, the 2012 model takes a great thing and makes it even better. [don’t miss your chance to win your own Bumbleride stroller from Cool Mom Picks!] Bumbleride has updated their wheel system which means that the stroller really glides and will make maneuvering in crowds...

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The full body baby bib, for full contact baby feeding

There were moments in my children’s earlier years that all I wanted to do was cover them in a full body raincoat.  It seemed like meal times turned into “let’s get as covered with food as we possibly can” times.  Thankfully, a brilliant mother out there has created a great solution with a full-sleeved, laminated baby bib from Baby Graybee. These bibs for babies 6-18 months keep even the most spirited eaters clean at meal time. The front of the bib is made of BPA-free laminated cotton, providing waterproof coverage for spills. The sleeves are a comfy soft jersey...

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Are we freaking there yet?

Are we there yet? It’s one of those perpetual jokes paid forward by each generation. You’re going to torture your parents? That’s fine. One day, your kids will torture you in turn. And that day is now. And even your noise-canceling headphones and some yodeling Gotye can’t stop it. But at least you can enjoy the freaking ride in style, right? It’s kind of amazing, how much one pretty luggage tag can affect one’s mood while traveling. I know that when I see the little mod pear dangling off my blue rolling suitcase on the conveyor belt after a...

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Breaking news: Peg Perego stroller recall

If you bought a Peg Perego stroller between January 2004 and September 2010, you’ll want to check to be sure it’s not one of the 223,000 strollers that are only just now being recalled after an infant died in 2004. Little ones, particularly those under 12 months old, can pass between the seat and the tray and can get their heads stuck.  The specific recalled strollers are the older Venezio and Pliko-P3 models that have a child tray with a single cup holder, not the bumper bar. To be certain if yours is on the list, check the CPSC information...

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Adorable toddler backpacks and big kid backpacks that you won’t be replacing by October

I learned the hard way, as have many parents, that if you buy a cheap backpack for your kid, even your toddler, you will be buying a second (and possibly third) backpack before the school year is through. So now I look for good quality, functionality, and still a cute design. Because another thing I’ve learned: it’s harder for my kids to forget their bag at home every morning if they actually look forward to showing it off. CMP favorite mom-run SoYoung Mother now is meeting all these criteria with an adorable new selection of kids’ backpacks made out...

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5 must-haves for chic summer travel

If you haven’t yet checked out the beautifully designed online style mag, CeciStyle, from the custom stationers of Ceci New York, we think you might like it. In fact, today is a pretty good day to do that very thing. Not coincidentally, we’ve even contributed a little piece about our 5 must-haves for chic summer travel. If you’re looking for the links to the items, find them here: 1. Longchamps Le Pliage Bag2. TKees Leather flip-flops3. An ereader + a great case4. A Sony Cybershot or other camera that didn’t come as part of your smartphone5. Sunscreen Swipes by...

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The sunblock that turned us into a family of sunblock snobs

This sunblock is so good, so easy, and so waterproof that my kids call it only “the good one.” Well, not my three-year-old. He calls it “dat good can dat you spray.” Translation: winning product. The brand is MD Solar Sciences, which bills itself as a physician-driven skin cancer prevention company– unlike, say, companies that also make SPF 2 body oil and post-sun aloe gel.  “The good one” refers to two different products that work equally well. The Quick Dry Body Spray is our very favorite, as it sprays cleanly and, believe it or not, clearly. With almost no...

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How five kids built a better lunchbox

Between summer camp and school, tossing an ice pack in with a sandwich, apple and yogurt is pretty much a no-brainer at this point. But when you consider that not all lunch boxes and ice packs are made for each other, there are plenty of times when I hesitate to pack a yogurt or a container of sliced fruit. Challenged with that scenario, a group of five smart kids came up with a lunchbox design that ensures cold food stays safely cold. And their design is so smart, one of the biggest retailers has snatched it up and made...

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A cool passport holder – you won’t believe what it’s made out of.

Not everyone gets excited about cool passport holders. But I do. While I’m not the most organized of people in my normal, day-to-day life, I turn into an organizational queen when my family travels, so I’m always on the lookout for organizational tools so amazing, I might actually get to relax a little. All the better if said tools are upcycled and totally gorgeous. Poketo’s Upcycled Leather Passport Holders will do the job quite nicely. These sleek cases are handmade entirely from leather of vintage sofas. Cool right? The results are textured collages, and no two are the same. Kind of a...

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Relief from teething pain–and baby mealtime drama

Getting babies to transition to solid foods can sometimes be a bit of a struggle. But while this new set can’t make the taste of rice cereal more appealing, it can make mealtime more enjoyable for both of you.  The Oogaa baby mealtime set is so clever. Instead of plastic or wood, it’s made of a super soft silicone that is BPA and toxin-free, and delightfully bendy. Your little teether can even gnaw on the spoon for relief. Then, as your toddler gets older and transitions to more foods, the design is still smart with spoons shaped like an...

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Tip for flying with babies – Buy this.

Does the thought of flying with your baby on a long journey completely stress you out? When your little one is small and doesn’t have his own child’s airplane seat, you cross your fingers that you get a seat up in front with more leg room that could be easily used for your baby. But, those seats are hard to get and you need a backup plan. This amazing device: the backup plan of your dreams. [editors update 2013: it is listed as “compliant with FAA regulations,” but still not FAA approved at this time as far as we...

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Grilling on the go

This week we found ourselves unexpectedly in need of a grill at a summer rental. We didn’t want to invest a fortune–we apartment dwellers can’t quite throw a few steaks on the grill in the middle of our living rooms. So I just love the idea of this compact grill on sale, that’s as easy on the eyes as it is on the wallet. The attractive little BBQ Grill at West Elm is now on sale for–get this–$19.99. Nice price cut considering it was originally $49. The pretty blue powder-coated steel grill is just under one-foot in diameter, so...

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Subscribing is one of the best tricks in the bag

This coming week, Cool Mom Picks subscribers have a chance to win that gorgeous Mia Bossi Lyndsey Bag, a $330 value. Even if you’re past the diaper bag stage, it looks absolutely nothing like a diaper bag. Plus the roomy size and those cool citron straps are great for an overnight jaunt. All you have to do is click here to subscribe. You’ll get access to our monthly subscriber-only giveaways like this one, and you’ll also find great offers, picks not seen on our site, and exclusive discounts all right in your inbox. But no spam. Because that’s not...

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7 of the best toys for the car (and books and games too!)

We’re about to head on one of our annual summer road trips, which means packing plenty of toys for the car. We try to avoid the DVD–and generally succeed if we’ve planned ahead. Here, some of my favorite toys for the car for toddlers and bigger kids, for when you’re tired of I Spy, and need a little quiet time in the front seat. Best of all, none of them beep or boop or require 18 AAA batteries. The only noises you’ll hear in the back are your happily entertained kids. At least until the next “I have to...

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Fake a tan while protecting yourself from a real one

Just because I want to avoid the sun, doesn’t mean I want to spend my summer looking like a ghost. I know I’m not alone, which is why self-tanners have become so popular. And now, I’ve found the perfect beauty product that gives me a gorgeous fake bake, while protecting my skin from the rays. The new SPF 20 Gradual Self Tanning Sunscreen Mousse from Supergoop leaves an ever-so-slight kiss of golden color while saving your skin from sun damage. Pretty genius. I used this self tanner/sunscreen for one week straight and was thrilled to step out looking like...

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The cutest beach robes for your little beach bums

Now that our neighborhood pool is open, my kids and I practically live there, Which that means I’m willing to spend more on good quality towels and swimsuits–a lesson I learned after going through far too many per kid last summer. So when I discovered these gorgeous pool robes from down under, I knew I had struck summertime gold. You have to trust an Australian company to know their beach towels, which is exactly why the locally made Terry Rich Australia kids’ beach robes are so darn awesome. Between the stylish design and the soft, hearty fabric, which actually dries you...

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The Serenity Star is here, and every new parent’s dream has been answered.

Let me tell you a little about why I’m in love with the Serenity Star: when our daughter was first born, we were– like all parents of newborns– suddenly ruled by sleep and eating schedules. It was exhausting and stressful, made even more so because she came five weeks early. I know my story isn’t unique. Which is why I think this just-released baby product from Aden + Anais is about to be the new must-have baby product of the year. I so wish the very brand new Serenity Star had been around when I was a new mom…...

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Stroller technicians are the new massage therapists.

Raise your hand if your stroller needs a good fixin or deep cleaning? Great! Now that I have your attention–every single one of you–I’m thrilled to tell you about a new baby gear detailing service that will reduce the stress of maintaining kiddo’s wheels. At the height of my insanity, I had three strollers. Yup, three. I’ve dealt with nearly every kind of stroller issue imaginable, from flat tires to torn handle bar foam, a bent chassis to missing rivets. All. On. My. Own. (Can you tell I’m a little bitter?) Thanks to Stroller Spa, you don’t have to...

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The newest designer diaper bag that you’ll be carrying long after the diapers are gone

When I first got a look at the newest designer diaper bag design from CMP fave Mia Bossi, I thought there was just no possible way that it was a diaper bag. But like their other bags we’ve been drooling over for years now, it is — and oh my, it’s gorgeous.  The Mia Bossi Lyndsey Bag is so swanky I nearly drooled all over it the second I saw it. It’s made from the Mia Bossi signature dotted canvas, with contrasting leather trim and straps in black, red, brown and even a sophisticated silver. This is easily a...

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The 6 best new products for babies (because I couldn’t narrow it to five)

Picking just five of the best new products for babies? That’s hard! And yet, a few weeks ago, I was honored to be one of the terrific judges at the New York Baby Show Expo put on by New York Family Magazine, and was asked to do that very thing. Narrowing down from about a zillion, all of which are wonderful (and sure to appear here soon), here are the winners by popular vote among us…plus one product that I voted for that I can only assume came in a very close sixth. Because it’s awesome. Ubbi Diaper Pails¬†(above)...

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The baby gear for your next road trip

As a mommy that is constantly on the go, I find that my kid’s nap times can be interrupted by life. So if I can’t create nap time at home, I’ll create it on the go. You gotta do what you gotta do, right? And here’s a fabulous bit of gear that’s helpful for you traveling moms. Let me introduce you to kikko’pilo, a 23″ square memory foam mini mattress that stores easily, rolling up into a tube. This is the perfect solution for extra pillows on flights, in cars or just out and about. The waterproof 100% cotton...

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Lyft your kids up where they belong

With four kids in our home, we’ve gone through our fair share of booster seats, and I’ve never quite found one that has every feature that I’m looking for. But after discovering this new one from Cool Mom Picks favorite Scandinavian Child, I think I’ve reached booster seat nirvana.  The Svan Lyft Booster Seat took me all of a minute to set up on my kitchen chair, with easy to clip straps behind and under the seat, as well as a 3-point safety harness to keep wiggly kids (up to 5 years or 50lbs) in place. I really like how it...

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Ubbi – Building a better diaper pail

The best diaper pail is the kind of topic that inspires some raging debates on mom message boards. They’re essential. They’re a waste of money. They’re too expensive. I couldn’t live without it. So what’s a first-time mama to do? My advice: Get the diaper pail. And this is from a woman in an apartment in which space is a premium. My other advice: Get the Ubbi diaper pail. The Ubbi Diaper pail is easy on the eyes–nice considering you will be engaging with it upwards of a dozen times daily (I’m sorry to report, new moms). The tough...

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Reinventing the beach towel

It’s not too often that I get excited about a beach towel for kids. Yes, I get it – some have cuter patterns or whatever. But in the case of Towelmate, they really did reinvent the beach towel for both kids and adults–and it’s awesome. Hit the Towelmate website and you’ll find a brilliantly simple idea–towels with a little zipper up one side, forming a small pocket for your keys or money. Or in the case of the kids’ beach towels, lotion and little treasures. In fact, I love that right inside the pocket it say “shells.” The mermaid towel...

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Baby sun protection? Reader Q&A

I just had my fifth baby a couple weeks ago and need some ideas for baby sun protection. Could you tell me some of your favorite products for making it easier and safer to be out in the sun with a very young infant? -Kim Congratulations on the birth of your baby! Number five no less. The cool thing is, there are a lot of great new products out there for you, even since your first was born. Here are a few picks to help keep your babe safer in the sun. –Christina I got to try out the GoCrib...

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The coolest luggage tags, just in time for travel season

It’s Memorial Day, which means the start of summer travel season, hooray! If upgrading your entire set of luggage isn’t in the budget at this particular moment, you can at least swankify it all with a super cool new luggage tag. Here are just a few I’ve found that might get us even more excited, that moment we see our bags make it out onto that airport conveyer belt. If you’d rather not put your name on the outside of your bag, how about a simple This Bag Is Mine stamped onto leather, and sold at Owen & Fred....

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BOB gets into the stroller accessory game and the kids aren’t complaining a bit.

Toddlerhood is a mover and shaker kind of lifestyle, which is probably why our first lower budget stroller wore out its welcome fairly quickly, and our replacement umbrella stroller is handy–but not souped-up enough for a long day bopping around. It seemed the timing was right to find a ride to fit our new lifestyle and we have with the BOB Revolution SE, launched just last year. Is it right for you too? Because they’ve got a sweet new accessory that might sweeten the deal. The newest addition to the BOB Revolution line that kids will undoubtedly appreciate as...

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