Clever Thing-a-ma-jigs You Didn’t Know You Needed

posted in: Home & Garden

Let’s face it, life is already complicated enough without little inconveniences like a car that reeks of stinky kids, period cramps, or wasting product at the end of a squeeze tube. I’ve found 18 innovative items that solve life’s little problems and others that you should have on hand “just because.” Looking for more? These are worth the splurge.



PURGGO Car Air Freshener ($29.99)

This is my new favorite air freshener for the car. It emits NO smell, so there’s no cloying fragrance, yet, it’s effective enough to keep a car odor-free, no matter how many skinky kids or pets you’re carting around. PURGGO is made with 100 percent bamboo charcoal, which naturally absorbs odor for a full year. Simply hang it behind one of the front car seats and breathe easy! When it stops working, simply place it in sunlight for several hours to refresh its stink-killing ability. PURGGO is healthy and safe for you, your kids, and your pets. It’s also great for people with allergies, asthma, stuffy nose, and other breathing sensitivities.

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Cheeky Chompers MultiMuslin Breast Feeding Cover ($29.99) 

Multifunctional baby products are essential – after all, we only have so much room in our diaper bags! Cheeky Chompers is a UK-based brand started by two moms who design practical products for moms everywhere. This bamboo and organic cotton blanket functions as a lightweight breastfeeding cover, a burp cloth, a stroller blanket/cover, a swaddle, and more. The silicone rings allow for easy attachment around your neck or to a stroller, and they make excellent teething toys. 

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Sabre Smart Bluetooth Pepper Spray ($29.99) 

This isn’t just any pepper spray. This safety tool connects to the Sabre Safety app so if the pepper spray is deployed, your selected contacts will receive text and call alerts. Hopefully, you’ll never have a chance to test it, but you’ll feel more protected if you do! 

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VidlLife Stainless Steel Water Bottle ($29 and up)

These bottles have a screw off bottom where you can store earbuds, cash, a key, or even a serving of protein powder. The bottles can be customized with a name or you can choose from several inspirational phrases, like “Destined to Great Things” or “Life is a Gift and So Are You,” for an additional charge.  You can choose from several lid types, bottle sizes, and colors for your bottle and base.  Right now, buy a bottle and get two free bases (bases are $13 each). 

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Miss A AOA Hand Soap Sheets ($1.00)

Don’t you hate it when you go to wash your hands and there’s no soap? It’s so important to sanitize our hands, especially during cold & flu season and with COVID still lingering around! These tiny, portable, anti-bacterial soap sheets will surely come in handy.  Available in four scents. 

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Relatable Menstruation Crustacean ($24.99) 

Feeling crabby due to discomfort? This adorable, heatable, lavender-scented plush will soothe cramps or muscle aches in no time. Microwave for 1 minute to heat. Also available in other critters, like shrimp and lobster.  

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Miss A Official Key Items Toothpaste Squeezer ($1.00)

This little tool really comes in handy when you are trying to squeeze out the last drops of toothpaste, face cream, or anything else in a tube. Just place the bottom of the tube into the opening of the Squeeze and turn the handle.  The Squeezer also has a flat, weighted bottom, so it can stand on it’s own with the tube in place.  

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Hollywood Fashion Secrets Boot Straps ($9.99)

Tall boots are fun to wear, but it’s no fun stuffing your pants into them! This pair of elastic & velcro straps prevents bunching and keeps pants in place.

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Fenty Match Stix Color-Adaptive Cheek + Lip Stick ($30) 

Originally a limited edition item, this makeup gem is now part of Fenty’s core collection. The translucent strawberry color is eye catching in it’s own right, but what’s important is inside. This gel stick can applied on the cheeks and lips and provides a sheer splash of color that can be layered for intensity. The shade is for all skin tones, adjusting to the wearer’s pH level using pH Color Shift Technology. 

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Violett_FR Invisible Bandage ($28)

Applying makeup over a blemish or skin abrasion can cause longer healing times or even infections. This colorless gel, which was selected as one of  PopSci’s ‘Best of What’s New’, a list of the 50 biggest innovations of 2023, helps to protect skin imperfections while allowing you to apply your makeup as usual. The tube comes with a handy brush for easy application.

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Lysol Air Sanitizer ($7.27)

The first-of-its-kind spray is EPA-approved and kills 99.9 percent of bacteria and airborne viruses. This is helpful to keep on hand in case someone in your household gets sick or if a visitor later tests positive or develops flu or cold symptoms. The handy spray is available in three scents and also kills odor-causing bacteria, when used as directed.  

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TookTake Pets ($4.99)

It’s hard enough to keep track of your own medications, but your pets? These handy labels are applied to their medicine bottles and you remove a tab when the dose is given, confirming whether or not you’ve given Fido his heartworm pill, or Sylvester her insulin injection. Available in Daily, 10-Day, Weekly, and Monthly.  

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Vintar Rechargeable 16-Color Motion Sensor LED Toilet Night Light ($36.99 for 3)

You didn’t think you needed a toilet light? Wrong! This motion-sensitive gadget is a game-changer, lighting your way to the bowl in the wee hours, and eliminating the need to turn on the bathroom light. You can choose from several light colors and intensities. It’s also rechargeable, so it requires no batteries (we’ve been using ours for weeks on one charge).  

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VBT Boob Tape ($14.97) 

Ladies, we all have those dresses or tops that are impossible to wear a bra with! Enter Boob Tape, which is a best-seller on Amazon. For bust sizes A-G, this sweatproof tape will help provide support so you can wear those garments with confidents.  Because the tape comes in strips, you can customize the application for the garment you are wearing and the fit you want. The tape also comes with silicone nipple covers, ensuring comfortable removal of the tape at day’s end.  

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Persik Pure-Sky Microfiber Mop Floor Cleaning ($33.99) with Window and Glass Mop Pad ($8.99) 

Cleaning floors is a chore, but this telescoping handle and washable mop pad make it a breeze – no detergents needed! Add the Window and Glass Mop and your windows, even the hard to reach ones, will be sparkling clean in a jiffy.

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Stone Journal Master Recipe Journal ($39)

If you keep a recipe book, you know how dirty and disorganized they can get! This notebook is perfectly designed for its purpose; the perforated pages lay flat, it’s alphabetically indexed, it has conversions, a pocket, a pen holder, and it has a double ribbon for marking pages. The journal is also made with the brand’s signature stone paper, which is water and grease-resistant.

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Proctor Silex Compact 2-in-1 Steamer/Iron ($24.99)

Don’t let the low price of this gadget fool you. This steamer/iron combo is lightweight enough to carry when you’re traveling to freshen up clothes on arrival, or you can use it as a steamer supplement to your home iron. The non-stick surface area is smaller than a typical iron, making it good for smaller ironing jobs as well. It heats up quickly, is safe for all fabrics and the cord is extra-long for ease of use.    

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Cordbrick Weighted Cord Holder ($12.79)

This clever item has 6 channels to help keep cords in place – you even can wrap cords around it to shorten them and use it as a phone stand and ear bud holder. It’s made of silicone, so its exterior is flexible, but it’s also weighted with steel so it won’t tip over or fall off your desk. Available in several fun colors, including glow-in-the-dark.  

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Smart Shopping Expert

Trae Bodge is an accomplished lifestyle journalist and TV commentator who has specialized in smart shopping, personal finance, and retail for more than a decade. She has appeared on TV over 1,000 times; including Today Show, GMA3, NBC Nightly News, Inside Edition, and network affiliates nationwide. She has been named a Top Voice in Retail by LinkedIn, and her expert commentary has appeared in Forbes,, Kiplinger, Yahoo Finance, and numerous others.