Gear Guy

What Are the Coolest New Small Gear Companies?

You’ve likely never heard of these brands, but they’re making great products

What Are the Coolest New Small Gear Companies?

Photo: Joe Jackson

Recently, we’ve seen a lot of inventive gear come from small brands such as Voormi and RinseKit. To find the next generation of cool upstarts and their new products, I combed the periphery of the Outdoor Retailer trade show in Salt Lake City, Utah. Here are my top five choices.


Wolfgang Man and Beast Rosette-Print Collar GoldCoast Skateboard Collab ($25)

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  Photo: Joe Jackson

Salt Lake City–based Wolfgang Man and Beast makes T-shirts and accessories for people and stylish dog gear to match. If you care about your pup’s appearance, this is your brand. I especially like the leashes and collars, including this collab with GoldCoast Skateboards.


DrinkTanks Juggernaut 128-Ounce Growler (From $109) and The Kegulator ($60) 

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  Photo: Joe Jackson

I regularly use DrinkTanks’ original growler, but now I’m excited to test its 128-ounce Juggernaut (about ten pints) and The Kegulator add-on*. The Kegulator pressurizes the growler contents, keeping the beer carbonated for several days. Off-the-grid camping trips suddenly got a lot better.


Biospired Homebound Towel (From $14)

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  Photo: Joe Jackson

Biospired, a new company in Seattle, Washington, makes the softest camp towel I’ve ever felt by surrounding an antimicrobial synthetic core with cotton. The cotton feels great against your skin, while the synthetic material draws moisture and fights stink.


K’ul Chocolate (From $25)

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  Photo: Joe Jackson

K’ul, based in Minneapolis, Minnesota, thinks chocolate should be treated like fuel, not candy. The company sources, roasts, and grinds all of its cacao beans and bolsters the bars’ nutritional and energy benefits by including ingredients like guarana and pumpkin seeds. Plus, they’re delicious.


Rad Roller All-In Kit ($140)

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  Photo: Joe Jackson

I’ve found massage to be vital for recovery when I’m training for a big event. Unfortunately, I can’t afford to see a massage therapist every week. That’s why I like the Rad Roller All-In Kit, which includes five self-massage tools that help flush lactic acid out of your quads, release neck tension, crunch out plantar fasciitis, and deal with just about any other problem you might face.

*This article was updated to correct an error about the name of the product.

Filed To: Gear Guy

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