Gear Diary’s 2022 Back to School Gift Guide

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It’s hard to believe that this long, hot summer is finally nearing its end, and it won’t be long before our kids are back in the classroom and our older kids are back at University. Here’s our 2022 back to school gift guide — it’s loaded with suggestions not just for those heading to school but also for the parents and grandparents who’ve just made it through a third pandemic summer.

Gear Diary's 2022 Back to School Gift Guide

Radio Flyer’s ‘Official eBike of Back to School’

Gear Diary's 2022 Back to School Gift Guide

If you’d like a more sustainable way to drop off and pick up your younger kids at school, the $2,100 Radio Flyer Official eBike of Back to School is worth a look.

This special BTS package includes a $1999 L885 electric bike, a $299 Kid & Cargo Carrier, a $99 front storage basket, a $39 handlebar bike mirror, and a $19 cell phone mount; there’s a huge savings when you get all of these components as a package!

Considering that the Flyer L885 eBike has a payload capacity of 400 pounds — 220 for the rider, 150 pounds in the integrated rear cargo area, and 25 pounds in the front basket — the smaller-sized back wheel design might look odd, but it provides the bike with an optimal center of gravity that perfect for hauling cargo.

Both the 26″ front wheel and 20″ back wheel tires have a 3″ puncture-resistant liner for fewer flats. A 7-speed Shimano shifter makes it easy to shift gears when you’re pedaling without the electric power boost; with or without the electric assist, or when riding fully electric, the Tektro lever brake system will help you stop safely.

Powering the eBike is a 48V, 720 Wh, 15 Ah Lithium-Ion battery that can travel up to 50+ miles per charge — or further if you add a second battery. The 500W brushless rear hub motor offers five levels of pedal assist, or you can use the half twist throttle on the right handlebar to enjoy your ride without pedaling at all at speeds up to 20 mph.

There’s plenty of room for lunch boxes and other personal items in the front basket, and up to two children can ride in the Kid & Cargo Carrier. For runs around town without the kids, the cargo carrier has sides that zip up to hold everything.

The Flyer L885 comes in three different sizes and four colors; it also comes with a high-intensity LED headlight, an integrated taillight with brake light, reflectors, an automatic motor cutoff switch, and an integrated bell.

With gas prices as high as we’ve seen this year, there has never been a better time to embrace electric alternatives, and the Flyer looks like so much fun!

Anker GaNPrime Chargers

Gear Diary's 2022 Back to School Gift Guide

Anker has just revealed their next-gen GaNPrime chargers, which are the perfect solution for students of all ages. Anker GaNPrime chargers can do something that, until now, no other GaN charger has been able to do — dynamically adjust power distribution to release any extra power output from one USB port to the other devices being charged.

That means no more unplugging a device to reset the charger’s power allocation so it can move unused wattage from one USB port to another.

Students in middle school and higher generally have a combination of tech that might include a laptop or tablet, a mobile phone, a pair of headphones, and a smartwatch that they have to keep powered.

The $109.99 Anker 747 Charger has three USB-C ports and one legacy USB-A port; with 150W of GaNPrime power, they’ll have enough wattage available to fast charge a 16″ MacBook Pro, an iPhone, and an Apple Watch simultaneously without up to four different wall chargers taking up their precious power outlets.

If they don’t need something with quite as many ports or power, you might consider the more compact $59.99 65W 735 Charger or the $94.99 120W 737 Charger; both offer two USB-C ports and one USB-A port with GaNPrime charging in their respective wattages.

If your student has a desktop in their room, the less portable $94.99 100W 727 Charging Station would be an excellent option; it’s 50% thinner than most power strips, yet it still has two USB-C ports, which can offer 100W charging when no other USB ports are being used, two USB-A ports, and two AC outlets.

Sleepout Curtain

A woman hanging a Sleepout Curtain on her window with sunlight outside; the room is full dark once the curtain is hung

A good night’s rest is very important for everyone, but particularly for students. If there are bright lights outside their bedroom window, noisy surroundings, or it’s difficult to keep their room cool because of a south-facing window, it can be nearly impossible to get a solid night’s sleep.

The $99 Sleepout Curtain is the perfect solution; not only does it install in seconds to fit any window with the two included suction cups, but it is also made of Thermaguard, a certified thermal-insulating 100% blackout fabric.

The curtain measures roughly 4.5′ wide by 6.5′ long; it can be installed vertically or horizontally, and it has a modular design so it can adjust to fit different window sizes. The curtain is charcoal grey with ecru cotton flocking and a soft microfiber finish.

If you need more than one curtain for rooms with multiple windows, the company is offering a discount of $159 for two curtains (usually $198) and four for $289 (usually $389).

The Sleepout Curtain is also a great option for parents, travelers, night shift workers, and anyone who has trouble keeping their room cool, dark, and quiet.

Lylux Cordless Hair Dryer

Gear Diary's 2022 Back to School Gift Guide

Most dorms require students to share a bathroom with at least one roommate, so I’m all for a product like the $169.99 Lylux Cordless Hair Dryer that allows students to dry their hair wherever it’s convenient rather than wherever the wall outlet happens to be.

The Lylux uses 88W fast charging, so it can be charged from 0-80% in 30 minutes or 0-100% in 50 minutes; it doesn’t get as hot as a corded hairdryer will, but it has a 110,000 rpm motor that provides a powerful 131º airflow, which is way less damaging for hair and allows it to keep its natural shine.

Lower heat than a traditional hair dryer may equal a minute or two longer when blow-drying hair, but it also means less frizz, less need for extra products, and less time running a straightener over the hair to combat frizz.

FlexiSpot Comhar 48″ All-in-One Standing Desk

Gear Diary's 2022 Back to School Gift Guide

Designed for the minimalist in mind, the sleek and stylish height adjustable FlexiSpot Comhar 48″ All-in-One Standing Desk has a modern tempered glass desk top finished with rounded edges for superior safety, comfort, and elegance.

The $399.99 Comhar comes with your choice of a black, white, or maple top; rolling casters can be added for $59.99. The desk includes storage and organization-friendly features, including a pull-out desk drawer to store homework essentials, three built-in USB charging ports, and four programmable height presets that make studying from home and in the dorms a breeze.

If you want to add an under-desk workout to help combat all that time sitting and studying, be sure to check out the $299.99 F1C Sit2Go 2-in-1 Fitness Chair Eco!

WD Drive for Chromebook

Gear Diary's 2022 Back to School Gift Guide

You can get a 2TB WD Drive for Chromebook for just $79.99; the drive has a slim, portable design, so that whether they are in class, on the couch, or out traveling, students can take their content anywhere, anytime.

Eco Lips Mongo Kiss Lip Balm

Gear Diary's 2022 Back to School Gift Guide

The weather will be getting chilly again, and you know what that means — chapped lips. Sometimes, the little things are most appreciated, and that’s where Eco Lips Mongo Kiss lip balms come in.

The Mongongo Oil in these lip balms is high in Vitamin E, essential fatty acids, and other nutrients that are perfect for nourishing & hydrating your loved ones’ skin.

Flavors include Coconut, Strawberry Lavender, Unflavored, Peppermint, Vanilla Honey, Black Cherry, Yumberry, Blood Orange, and Pomegranate; not only do these lip balms smell good, feel good, and, yes, even taste good!

You can feel good about purchasing these lip balms because they are made with ethically sourced, Fair Trade certified, organic, non-GMO Mongongo Oil harvested by rural African women; each tube purchased is a step closer to financial independence for them!

SanDisk Ultra microSD Card for Chromebook

Gear Diary's 2022 Back to School Gift Guide

If your student will be issued a Chromebook to work on this year, you can help them add extra storage for photos, videos, and other important files with a SanDisk Ultra microSD Card for Chromebook. Starting at $13.99 for 64GB up to $37.99 for 256GB, these microSD cards are tested and certified to work seamlessly with Chromebooks.

Google Pixel 6a

Gear Diary's 2022 Back to School Gift Guide

Is it time for a new smartphone? Consider sending your student back to school with the $449 Google Pixel 6a. It sports the same premium Google Tensor system on a chip that’s in the Pixel 6 flagship devices; it also has WiFi 6 (802.11ax) and 6E (6GHz) with MIMO, dual-band Bluetooth, and the next-gen Titan M2 security chip also found in the Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro.

Available in three colors — Sage, Chalk, and Charcoal — the Pixel 6a has 6GB LPDDR5 RAM with 128GB storage and a 4,410mAh battery. The cherry on top is that, as we first saw in the Pixel 5a, the Pixel 6a has IP67 dust and water resistance, so there’s no reason to worry about getting it wet.

The Google Pixel 6a may be considered a budget phone, yet nothing about it screams “cheap” to me. I can highly recommend it to anyone who prefers a slightly smaller Android smartphone without any real caveats other than it not having wireless charging; for the price, you won’t even be mad.

CBD Living Flavored CBD Oil TincturesGear Diary's 2022 Back to School Gift Guide

If you’ve tried CBD tinctures in the past but weren’t thrilled with their taste, the new CBD Living Flavored CBD Oil Tinctures may be just the ticket. With flavors that include Green Apple, Salted Caramel, Chocolate Mint, and the new Horchata flavor, these fast-acting tinctures are delicious.

Tinctures are easy and convenient to use: you can either dispense the oil directly under your tongue or mix it with food and beverages. Made with 100% organic hemp sourced from state-licensed farms in Oregon and Colorado, CBD Living’s tinctures are vegan, certified Kosher, gluten-free, non-GMO, and THC-free.

You can get the CBD Living Flavored CBD Oil Tinctures in five different strengths ranging from 200mg to 10,000mg, with prices from $30 to $300 (or even less if you sign up for a subscription).

Whether you use CBD to manage anxiety, stay calm, soothe aches & pains, or beat insomnia, there’s a flavor and strength of CBD Living Flavored CBD Oil Tinctures that will work for you!

Lenovo Go Wireless Multi-Device Mouse

2022 back to school gift guide

Designed to be the only mouse your student might need, the $37.99 Lenovo Go Wireless Multi-Device Mouse can be paired with up to three devices; it will effortlessly cycle between them with a push of a button.

This mouse can provide up to three months of use from a single 1.5–hour charge via wired USB–C or wireless Qi charging. It can be used on nearly any surface and features an on–fly adjustable DPI sensitivity and a programmable utility button with shortcuts configured for Microsoft Teams meetings by default.

Best of all, it’s portable enough to be brought anywhere your student needs to work.

ThermoWorks Thermapen Mk4

Dinobi Laundry Detergent

Gear Diary's 2022 Back to School Gift Guide

If your student has extra-sensitive skin, they will absolutely appreciate Dinobi Laundry Detergent. At $18.99, this highly concentrated, 100% plant-based detergent is perfect for people with eczema, psoriasis, and other sensitivities. It contains no sulfates, synthetic fragrances or dyes, or harmful toxic ingredients; in fact, there are literally only four ingredients in Dinobi, two of which are water and lavender essential oil!

At an ounce per load, one 32-ounce bottle has enough detergent in it to handle two loads of laundry every week for an entire 16-week semester!

Gryphon AX

Gear Diary's 2022 Back to School Gift Guide

If your older student is moving into a house or apartment, they will need a powerful router that ensures they can complete their assignments and stream media without dealing with dead spots. The Gryphon AX would make an excellent house-warming gift!

The $279 Gryphon AX is an all-in-one WiFi solution with next-generation WiFi 6; their connection will never slow down no matter how many users or devices are connected. A single router covers up to 3,000 square feet, eliminating dead spots in their home.

Right out of the box and with no extra expenses, the Gryphon AX comes with lifetime access to Gryphon’s Advanced Protection, software security patches, firmware updates, and Gryphon Connect app updates. The one-year limited warranty also includes hardware repair coverage and access to customer support 7-days a week.

Suppose you want to take that security up a notch. In that case, you can include a subscription to the Gryphon Premium Protection Plan ($7.99/month, billed annually), which adds next-generation firewall security to their home with features that include:

  • Blocked ads, adware, malware, spyware, and ransomware from all connected devices
  • Active monitoring of weaknesses on their network that hackers can exploit
  • Patented machine learning technology detects infected devices on their network
  • Real-time security database updates to block the latest threats
  • Gryphon HomeBound, which extends Gryphon protection to smartphones and tablets on mobile data and other WiFi networks
  • An extended hardware warranty

If you’re thinking of getting one for your own house and you still have younger children at home, you’ll appreciate the on-the-go protection and extended parental controls. If you opt for the Gryphon Premium Protection Plan, you’ll enjoy extended Gryphon protection and parental controls to smartphones and tablets on mobile data and other WiFi networks.

You can also combine two or more Gryphon AX routers for seamless mesh WiFi coverage throughout larger homes with no dead spots.

CBD Living Full Spectrum CBD + THC Gummies

Gear Diary's 2022 Back to School Gift Guide

Parents! If aches and pains are only getting worse lately, or if tuition bills are making for some sleepless nights, the combination of 25mg of Full-Spectrum nano CBD and 5mg of nano THC found in the $50 CBD Living Full-Spectrum CBD + THC Gummies may be just what you need to feel better during the day and sleep better at night.

Made with CBD Living’s Proprietary Water Soluble Technology, you’ll get fast-acting results – typically within 30 minutes!

With a ratio of 5:1 CBD and Delta-9 THC, the pomegranate-flavored gummies taste great! The ingredients used are vegan and non-GMO, and the small amount of Delta-9 THC in the gummies is 2018 Farm Bill Compliant. Even so, CBD Living cautions that since the gummies contain THC derived from hemp, so bear in mind that ingesting them could result in failing a drug test if this is something you have to worry about.

All CBD Living products are manufactured in the USA using 100% organic hemp grown on state-licensed hemp farms in Oregon and Colorado; the products are then triple-tested by third-party independent labs, and the results are posted online for full transparency.

Twelve South ParcSlope for MacBook & iPad

Gear Diary's 2022 Back to School Gift Guide

The $59.99 ParcSlope is a dual-purpose stand that elevates MacBook screens and angles iPads for more comfort and productivity.

With ParcSlope, students will enjoy better ergonomics and increased airflow for a cooler, quieter MacBook. iPad users will love the feel of the 18-degree sketching/typing angle ParcSlope creates.

Precision curves, special ridges, and built-in cable management make this sleek metal stand a must-have for students with MacBooks and iPads.

Moonside Neon Lighthouse

Gear Diary's 2022 Back to School Gift Guide

Make any dorm instantly cooler with the $96.90 Moonside Neon Lighthouse. You can personalize the 14″ tall Neon Lighthouse with a silver, blue, pink, black, or green aluminum base when you order, and it can be easily placed just about anywhere for a cool aesthetic.

This striking lamp is app-controlled; it has a 16 million color range with 90 individually addressable dynamic color zones. The Neon Lighthouse uses LEDs, and it will last for 50,000 hours or for approximately 13.7 hours of use per day for ten years. Using WiFi 802.11b/g/n and Bluetooth LE V4.2, you can control the lamp with Google Home, Alexa, SmartThings, and IFTT, with more smarthome integrations coming soon.

Cannabolish Odor Removers

Gear Diary's 2022 Back to School Gift Guide

If your adult college student medicates (or recreates, we aren’t judging) by smoking CBD or THC flower, they already know that the smell can sometimes be overwhelming if their apartment’s ventilation isn’t cooperating. Air fresheners will only cover the unwelcome odors with perfumes and other chemicals.

In contrast, Cannabolish products are made with natural plant oils and water to absorb and remove odors without toxic ingredients. Cannabolish products are safe to use around animals and people, in large or small spaces, as often as needed; they are available in a Wintergreen or Lavendar scent.

The $11.99 8-ounce Cannabolish Odor Removing Sprays neutralize odor molecules in seconds; in other words, it doesn’t just cover them up, and the plastic bottle is recyclable.

The $14.99 7-ounce Cannabolish Odor Removing Candles are a clean-burning soy-based candle that removes odors using safe, natural ingredients without toxic chemicals or synthetic fragrances. Its glass container can either be recycled or turned into a drinking glass when the candle is done, so it’s like two gifts in one.

The $15.99 15-ounce Cannabis Odor Removing Gels remove lingering smoke smells from cannabis and tobacco quickly and safely. The gel’s plant-based formula works as it evaporates to seek out and neutralize smoke odors non-stop without any harsh chemicals or synthetic fragrances. Leave an open jar in any room to extinguish lingering smoke odors.

Fujitsu ScanSnap iX1300 Scanner

Gear Diary's 2022 Back to School Gift Guide

Space-saving is a must in dorm rooms, and the smart and ultra-compact $299.99 ScanSnap iX1300 will fit on just about any size desk. Having one will help students quickly and easily digitize school documents, paperwork, curriculum materials, homework, vaccination, and health records — you name it.

The ScanSnap iX 1300 has USB and WiFi connectivity, and it works with Mac, PC, iOS, and Android; it’s one of the best tools to digitize, organize, and share documents across the education environment—from the front office to the classroom (wherever that might be)—all with the touch of a button.

UGREEN Nexode 200W GaN Charger

Gear Diary's 2022 Back to School Gift Guide

Playing the equivalent of musical chairs with wall chargers and cables can become the norm, especially when students’ everyday carry includes multiple power-hungry devices like laptops and tablets. Eliminate the need for up to six separate chargers with the $199.99 UGREEN Nexode 200W GaN Charger

The Nexode puts four USB-C ports and two USB ports in one tidy spot; with its GaN technology, students will be able to fast-charge up to three 65W laptops at the same time, or they can charge their laptop, tablet, phone, headphones, smartwatch, and one other device simultaneously.

Scosche BoomCan MS

Gear Diary's 2022 Back to School Gift Guide

The $49.99 Scosche BoomCan MS is a cute little 3W speaker that can either attach to your iPhone’s MagSafe connector or be magnetically attached to any metal surface.

When used with a MagSafe-enabled iPhone, the BoomCan MS securely clips onto the phone’s back. That means the sound is firing away from you, yet it is still a significant improvement over any phone’s built-in speaker.

When connected to an iPhone’s MagSafe, the speaker’s positioning means it can double as a kickstand for hands-free viewing.

Lumina Webcam

Lumina mounted on a 2017 iMac computer

If your student is still having to learn virtually even part of the time, they likely need a webcam that is clear and allows them to participate in class interactions fully, The $199 Lumina Webcam makes a massive difference in how you’ll look to the people you video chat with, even with challenging lighting.

Lumina’s hardware is exceptionally well-built and attractive; the aluminum camera is very compact and portable, and it is an excellent option for anyone on Mac or PC that needs to use it with their laptop for remote school or work.

Electrolit Instant Hydration

Gear Diary's 2022 Back to School Gift Guide

Whether your student is walking across a scorching campus to make it to their next class, working out, or you want to make sure they don’t have any excuses to miss class after a big night out, Electrolit can help.

Launched in 1950 as a solution for hydration in Mexican schoolchildren by Grupo Pisa, the leading pharmaceutical Company in Latin America, Electrolit is made to quickly hydrate and stave off all of the effects of dehydration.

Electrolit tastes great, and it comes in plenty of flavors. You can find stores near you that sell it by clicking here.

Good Stuff Beverage Company

Gear Diary's 2022 Back to School Gift Guide

Are you a parent in California? Well, you did it; let’s celebrate! The kids are safely back in school, and you deserve the opportunity to chill out or to get energized with Good Stuff Beverage Co.’s Cannabis Infused Elixers.

Good Stuff Beverage Company’s offerings are finely crafted, richly flavored with natural ingredients, and terpene-infused drinks that include “Sativa Energy,” “Indica Calm,” and “True Hybrid.”

The company makes products using a “farm to table” view; they use real honey, real lemon juice, and real fruit. Whenever possible, they use ingredients that people know and understand. They do add acacia gum, which is essentially dried tree sap, to help mix the cannabis (an oil) into their water-based beverage and potassium sorbate (a salt) to preserve freshness.

Inside each 12-ounce bottle are real fruit juices with other all-natural ingredients that have been turpine infused with 100mg of THC to create a smooth experience. Each cap-full is 2mg, so you can easily work out the correct dose whether drinking it straight or mixing mocktails with fruit, sodas, and water.

We pride ourselves on making finely crafted, richly flavored, cannabis-infused beverages. The challenge with cannabis beverages is that they generally taste “chemically or weedy.” They avoid this mess by tinkering with their formulations and using real ingredients. Good Stuff tastes rich, natural, and fantastic; just remember that you can always drink more, but you can’t drink less. 😉

They say that you can expect to feel the effects within about 15 minutes, with some feeling it in under 2-3 minutes; because of the 100% homogeneity, they guarantee that you will get the same experience from top to bottom of the bottle or serving.

Unfortunately for the rest of the country, Good Stuff Beverage Co. products are only available in California. To see if there is a dispensary near you, click here.

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About the Author

Judie Lipsett Stanford
Editor in Chief of Gear Diary, Secular Humanist, techie, foodie, hoarder of Kindle eBooks, lover of live music, and collector of passport stamps.