What's New, What's Hot: May 2019


KATANA Safety Arc: If you ever need it while traveling, this device can be a life saver. A portable panic button that is designed to attach to the back of your smartphone or its case, it is at once a loud security alarm (125 dB), a silent alert (both alarms bypass a phone's lock screen), a GPS locator and tracker (with its dedicated app), a messaging center and an emergency contact source to local police authorities. In addition, users can establish a security group of seven friends and family who will be instantly notified if trouble occurs and can immediately engage in a conference call to discuss your situation. One caveat: The device has a one-time fee of $149 and the monthly subscription is $9.99 a month. www.katanasafety.com.

Look Big Book: While meant for a certain kind of intrepid or mildly adventurous traveler, this humorous and potentially helpful field guide to avoiding and/or handling dangerous interactions with 50 wild animals makes for pleasant reading for those of us unlikely to confront anything more fearsome than our pet dog or cat. So, what do you do when you run into (literally or figuratively) a deer, mongoose, black widow spider or shark (and every other Noah's Arc creature)? Does yelling "Hey Bear!" really work to keep you safe on the trail. Find out the answers to these and a ton of other questions and prosper from the sound advice offered in the Look Big Book. Written by Rachel Levin, who has been published in the New Yorker and The New York Times, among other outlets, this survival guide will prepare you for unexpected encounters with the wild kingdom, from big (moose) to little (cockroaches). At Amazon ($10.35 and $9.99 Kindle) and other on-line booksellers.

Epson Portable Document Scanner: Listed as Model No. ES-55R, this on-the-go unit can automatically extract data from receipts and export them to the likes of Excel and Turbo Tax; scan, review and save files; create searchable PDFs as well as editable Word and Excel files. Moreover, this Epson mobile scanner scans a single page in as little as 5.5 seconds and can handle documents ranging in size from I.D. cards to 72 inches. The scanner also has an automatic feeding mode that can combine multi-page scans into one file. For business travelers, a few more important statistics: the product measures only 10.7 by 1.8 by 1.3 inches and weighs but 0.59 pounds. Finally, the scanner is USB powered, which means it connects to your Windows PC or Mac without the need of batteries or an external power source. $169.99; www.epson.com.

Skinbuzz Facial Kit: This all-in-one travel bag contains everything a traveler needs to keep his or her skin looking and feeling healthy. Included in the kit are products that are bee-dependent, as the name Skinbuzz might suggest. For example, Clean-Bee Organic Cleanser features a natural antiseptic and anti-inflammatory resin used by honeybees to strengthen their hives, while Bee-You-Tiful Organic Moisturizer combines beeswax with jojoba and grapeseed oil. Coal-Bee Mask adds royal jelly to charcoal and clay to deep clean and exfoliate sensitive acne prone skin. The kit, which comes with a headband and an activated charcoal and bamboo face cloth, is completed by Bee-Witched Organic Toner, with aloe vera and citrus. $42; https://skinbuzz.com/.

Waterpik Sidekick Water Flosser: The well-known brand behind this product boasts that it has "all the benefits of a full-sized device in an ultra-compact, collapsible package created for portability," and such appears to be the case. Perfect for flossing travelers (and shouldn't that be all of us?), the Waterpik Sidekick is equipped with an easy to grasp stylus with a swivel handle and integrated stylus, five pressure settings, a water reservoir that inverts for storage and transport and a water-resistant case. Benefits are said to be plaque removal and healthier gums, as well as removal of debris from between teeth and below the gum line. You probably won't want to wheel this out in the tight little island of an airline rest room, but it will make a perfect fit for your hotel bathroom. $139.99; https://waterpik.com/.

Correction: The Katana device has a one-time fee of $149 and the monthly subscription is $9.99 a month; incorrect prices were featured in an earlier version of this article.


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