20 of the best things you can buy at REI
Trust us, you need them all.
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Whether you’re an avid outdoors person or a city slicker who loves handy gadgets, REI is a magical place. A wonderland of hiking gear, tents, packs, clothes, and more, the beloved co-op truly has something for everyone. And, like most stores with a cult-like following, some products are simply better than the others.
At Reviewed, we’ve written time and time again about the products we love at REI. From our favorite purchases under $50 to the best gifts, we’ve dug intensively through the site. To make it easier for you, we’ve narrowed down our favorites to bring you the 20 best products you can buy at REI. From the iconic Yeti cooler to a portable fire pit, these items have been tested and religiously reviewed by REI fanatics.
1. Blister-preventing socks that your feet will thank you for
Whether you’re hiking up a mountain or just trekking across town, there’s nothing worse than a pair of uncomfortable socks. Even worse, a pair of socks that cause blisters to form on your precious feet. That’s not a problem with Smartwool’s trekking heavy duty socks. Designed for ultimate comfort, these socks have heavy cushioning to absorb shock as you walk while the non-itchy merino wool wicks away moisture from feet. They’re so great, in fact, we put them on our list of items you shouldn’t go camping without.
2. The Yeti Tumbler with 28,000 reviews
Don’t trust us on this one, trust the thousands and thousands of positive reviews from people who know firsthand that this tumbler is the only tumbler that matters. Made with stainless steel and featuring double-wall vacuum insulation, this 20-ounce Yeti tumbler keeps your cold drinks cold and your hot drinks hot. Perfect for hot coffee or a pool-side cocktail, the spill-resistant lid means that your drink won’t slosh around when you’re on the move, either.
3. The North Face jacket that keeps you warm, even when wet
The North Face is a well-known brand, and though they have tons of great products, the Thermoball insulated jacket is adored by many. Designed to insulate and easily compress for packing, this durable jacket uses "a bottleneck quilting pattern” and the brand’s signature Thermoball insulation to keep wearers warm and eliminate cold spots. Better yet, its water-repellent design works to keep stains and moisture away. While it won't be cold for too much longer, it means. you can snag this coat for a great discount right now.
- Get the Women’s ThermoBall Eco Insulated Jacket for $149.73
- Get the Men’s ThermoBall Eco Insulated Jacket for $149.73
4. A cozy fleece sweater with plenty of pockets
Is there anything better than putting on a cozy sweater to relax in at home or wear outside for an early morning walk? The answer is no—and that’s why people are truly obsessed with Patagonia’s Better Sweater fleece jacket. Perfect for layering, this hip-length sweater is made with recycled polyester knit fleece that’s dyed using a low-impact process that’s better for you and the environment. The sweater has warm pockets for your hands and a convenient chest pocket to keep the things most important close to your heart.
- Get the Men's Patagonia Better Sweater Fleece Jacket for $139
- Get the Women's Patagonia Better Sweater Fleece Jacket for $139
5. The cozy fleece pullover that’s perfect for every occasion
Another crowd favorite and slightly different design, the OG Patagonia Better Sweater Quarter-Zip is a good staple piece to have on hand all year round. Made with medium-weight fleece, this hip-length sweater has a zip-up left sleeve pocket, stand-up collar, and is the perfect piece to wear with layers to adjust to temperatures as the weather fluctuates throughout the day.
- Get the Women’s Patagonia Better Sweater Quarter-Zip Fleece Pullover for $119
- Get the Men’s Patagonia Better Sweater Quarter-Zip Fleece Pullover for $119
6. The water bottle that took the world by storm
If you’ve been on the internet in the last few years, you’ve probably seen a Hydro Flask. Beloved by everyone, from Gen Z Instagram stars to avid hikers to people just obsessed with staying hydrated, the Hydro Flask is one of the best water bottles we've ever tested. It's made with the company’s TempShield double-wall vacuum to keep your drinks cold or hot on the inside, but a safe temperature to touch on the outside no matter what you’re drinking. Made for maximum portability, the narrow design fits in most standard cup holders so it’s easy to transport via car, bike, or baby stroller.
7. A universal sandal you can wear nearly anywhere
People who love Tevas have an almost emotional relationship with the shoes. Whether you’re hiking through woods, wading through a river, or pounding the pavement on a hot summer day, these sandals are durable and up for the challenge. The hook-and-loop closure makes them easy to slide on or off while the water-ready polyester webbing makes them dry in a snap if you find yourself in water. Better yet, Teva makes tons of different designs so they’re great sandals to show off your personality, too.
- Get the Women’s Teva Original Universal Sandals for $50
- Get the Men’s Teva Original Universal Sandals for $50
8. The smartwatch that makes your runs better than ever
If you’re running or hiking, it’s important to know just how far you’ve gone because we all live for our workout stats. With the Garmin Forerunner 245, the best running watch we've ever tested, you can access your distance, pace, and heart rate by quickly looking at your wrist. Designed to help maximize your runs or hikes, this watch connects to your smartphone to easily record all of your important data. And, with safety in mind, the watch can also alert an emergency contact using its incident alert system to your exact location if something happens while on the go.
9. The most versatile pants a man can own
Look, zip-off pants aren’t for everyone, we know. But, if you are in the market for a pair of pants that easily convert into shorts look no further than this pair from Columbia. Available in four different colors, the Columbia Silver Ridge Convertible Pants have tons of storage, built-in sun protection, and special moisture-wicking fabric that will keep you dry and comfortable. Full length at first, these handy pants zip down to a short with a 10-inch inseam so you can adjust your outfit throughout the day.
10. The perfect hat for any adventure
If you’re bare up top or have a full set of hair, keeping your head protected from the elements, especially when out in nature, should be a top priority. Thankfully, Tilley has an answer for that with the Airflo hat that's designed to block 98% of UVA and UVB rays off your scalp. The wide brim will keep the sun and potential rain off your face while the mesh crown helps air circulate to keep you nice and cool. And, as an added bonus, wearing it will probably make you feel like a modern-day Indiana Jones.
11. The tool that does it all and then some
It’s always smart to have a multi-use tool within arms reach, and the Leatherman Wave Plus does it all. Billed as a tool you can use with just one hand, this gadget features 18 different tools, including needle-nose and regular pliers, wire cutter, electrical crimper, wire stripper, 420HC knife, serrated knife, saw, scissors, bottle opener, wood/metal file, and a multi-faceted screwdriver. This functionality is why it's our favorite multitool. Easy to fold up and store in a handy place, this can be a lifesaver—literally—when you need it.
12. A portable fire pit to turn up the heat
Let’s face the obvious: Life is better around a fire surrounded by family and friends. If wherever you’re gathering doesn’t have a nice fire pit, why not just bring one with you? Thanks to the Solo Stove Bonfire Fire Pit, you can do just that. With more than 3,500 reviews and a 4.9-star rating at REI, this smokeless, portable fire pit is a crowd pleaser. Designed to concentrate oxygen flow directly to twigs and wood, it’s highly efficient and a breeze to clean up and store meaning once the flame runs, it’s easy to move on down the road.
13. An anti-chafe stick that means business
If you’re an avid runner or just prone to chafing, this affordable stick can help make sure your body isn’t irritated from movement. Designed for “eliminating painful chafing in hot spots on your skin as your miles increase,” people swear by this product, including one of our editors. To use simply rub directly on the skin wherever you experience chafing, then keep on your merry little way.
14. Ultra-comfortable boots to give you warm and fuzzy feelings
Have you ever put your feet in a cloud? No, well slipping your feet into a pair of Ugg boots is practically the same thing. Made with genuine sheepskin and leather, Ugg boots have stood the test of time and are still super popular. The warm and fuzzy interior keeps your feet totally comfortable, while the durable exterior repels stains and moisture. Better yet, these boots are made in a factory that partners with HERproject, an organization created to "empower and educate women in the workplace."
15. A waterproof blanket that's perfect for the outdoors
If you’re spending time outdoors, it’s important to have a nice blanket to sit on or wrap yourself up in when the temperature drops. And Yeti, known for its famous cups and coolers, also happens to make an incredible outdoor blanket. The Lowlands blanket checks all the boxes: it’s machine washable, waterproof on the outside, padded on the inside, and repels burrs and dirt, so you don’t have to worry about any mess. Don’t worry if you have a pet, either, because it’s designed to easily shake off pet hair from even the fluffiest floof.
16. A hammock you can hang nearly anywhere
My own favorite REI purchase, the ENO SingleNest hammock is the perfect accessory for a day at the park, to take on a hike to relax in nature, or to simply sling up on your roof to catch some rays. This hammock, which can hold up to 400 pounds, packs up into the size of a softball so you can toss it in your bag for the perfect park day. If you decided to invest, which I highly recommend, just don’t forget to buy a set of straps to make hanging your new favorite hammock a breeze.
17. An iconic cooler
If you haven’t noticed, we’re obsessed with Yeti and with its incredible product lineup. But, if we had to choose just one product you the one Yeti product you need to own, it’s the Yeti Roadie 45 cooler. Perfect for your next outdoor adventure or barbecue, this cooler has three inches of insulation to keep up to 28 cans ice cold for, we’re not kidding, days. Strong rubber latches keep it air-tight and insulated, and convenient handles make it easy to pick up and carry on the go.
18. A running belt that keeps your belongings safe and secure
Be it a long run, a long hike, or just a day on vacation, it’s important to keep your personal belongings safe, secure, and easy to reach. This handy FlipBelt Zipper Belt does all of that in a totally comfortable and effortless way. While technically a running belt, it can be worn to hold your phone and wallet for a jog or your passport and keys while out exploring a new city or national park. An internal keyring secures your keys, Lycra spandex helps it stay snug on the body, and it’s machine washable for easy cleaning after a sweaty day out.
19. A compressible pillow you can take anywhere
For a night of camping or a lazy day reading in the park, having a comfortable pillow is great but not too easy to pack. Comfortable and portable, the Therm-a-Rest Compressible Pillow is ideal for your next adventure. Available in three different sizes, this expandable pillow packs down to one-fifth its full size. It's also machine washable and made with high-quality foam, so this handy pillow might just end up with a permanent place on your real bed.
20. The solar-powered lantern that charges your phone
Talk about killing two birds with one stone, this 2-in-1 lantern charges in the sunlight, illuminates your way in the darkness, and even charges your phone. With five different brightness levels, this LED light can shine for up to 50 hours on a single full charge in low power mode. It becomes completely charged with 12 to 14 hours of direct sunlight, it can recharge a phone between to full power in just a few hours. Collapsable and easy to pack, this handy device is the light that shines a little brighter than the rest.
Prices were accurate at the time this article was published but may change over time.