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Introducing "Better Basics," products you use every summer, but with a smart twist

Summertime and the living's easy... with these new products, that is!
by Sarah Bracy Penn /  / Updated  / Source: TODAY

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While you might teach your kids that bragging isn't polite, it's secretly a little fun to be the first of your friends to boast products that are ahead of the curve.

TODAY Style tapped beauty and style expert Jenn Falik to share her favorite finds that elevate your everyday summertime essentials to make them worth showing off. Keep reading to learn more and shop her picks, from next-level beauty buys to better basics for the beach!

The last time Jenn joined TODAY, she brought us 'Better Basics' for spring including a toothbrush for kids and the perfect no-show socks.

ENTERTAINING

Instead of a germy, potentially toxic grill brush, try something safe and healthy!

Did you know that traditional wire bristle grill brushes can actually be harmful to your health? During vigorous brushing, the tiny bristles can detach from the brush and stick to the grill grates. Next time you grill out, those bristles can then stick to food and be ingested. Yuck! To combat the issue, Q-Swiper has created a wire- and bristle-free cleaner that, when used with the accompanying grill wipes, safely remove grease, grime and food remnants from the grates.

Q-Swiper BBQ Grill Brush Cleaner Set, $15, Amazon

TODAY has affiliate relationships, so we may get a small share of the revenue from your purchases. Items are sold by the retailer, not by TODAY. All prices are subject to change and items could sell out based on the merchant’s inventory.

Instead of spilling the sips at a picnic, try glasses made for sandy shores!

When entertaining outside or lounging on the beach, there's always one problem: Where do you put your glass? Rather than trying to balance your champagne glass on uneven ground, check out these outdoor champagne glasses from Uncommon Goods. Their patented ball-and-stem design allows them to stand upright in sand, grass and snow ... and, they float!

Outdoor Champagne Glasses, $22, Uncommon Goods

These also come in a wine glass version for $20.

BEACH

Instead of an unstable and unwieldy beach umbrella, get a pop-up beach tent!

Forgo a giant beach umbrella and pack this compact, easy-to-assemble beach tent. It has UPF 50 and provides nice ventilation for those super-toasty days. Plus, it's big enough to fit two chairs inside.

Arcshell Premium Extra Large Pop Up Beach Tent, $60, Amazon

Sadly, this tent is sold out on Amazon right now! The Pacific Breeze Easy Setup Beach Tent is an Amazon Choice product with over 2,700 positive reviews. It costs $70.

For a more affordable option, the Sport-Brella Portable All-Weather Umbrella is $56 and has over 2,800 positive reviews on Amazon.

Instead of your basic cotton towel, try a microfiber one!

These microfiber towels by Dock and Bay are super absorbent, lightweight, deflect sand and come with a cute storage pouch. Can you think of anything more perfect for the beach? We can't!

Microfiber Beach Towels for Travel, $20, Amazon

Instead of your average beach cruiser, get one with power!

Once you pack your beach bag, cooler and tent onto a bike, it can be quite the haul to get to the beach. This bike, complete with electric pedal assistance, can speed up to 24 miles per hour on a full charge. The accelerator and throttle are located on the handlebars, and the pedal assist kicks in when the bike senses a struggle, like an uphill climb or a heavy load.

Hover-Way E-Bike, $549, Amazon

BEAUTY

Instead of your basic SPF cream, try a multitasking formula!

We're all for a product that makes applying sunscreen more fun. Supergoop! specializes in developing clean formulas that go beyond your average sunblock lotion. The line includes SPF-packed serums, mousses, lotions, lip balms, setting powders, mists and more, meaning you can swap out some of your everyday beauty products for ones that give you all-day glow and protect your skin from harmful rays!

Supergoop! Setting Mist, $28, Sephora

Supergoop! Glow Stick, $25, Sephora

Instead of an ugly cap (or ruining your hair), wear an invisible swim cap!

If you color-treat your hair, it's a common fear that chlorine and other pool chemicals will ruin fresh highlights or dyed hair. Try IGK's Blocked Water-Resistant Hair Shield. Apply a dollop of the formula all over to create a transparent, protective barrier that saves your strands from UV rays, wind, sweat, chemicals and other factors that come into play on pool days.

IGK Blocked Water-Resistant Hair Shield, $29, Sephora

STYLE

Instead of basic running shorts, wear a breathable and flattering skort!

Looking to elevate your athleisure? Do away with your old running shorts and tees and upgrade to a matching Outdoor Voices number. The brand's running skorts boast a flattering cut and come in several color combinations and patterns. Nab a matching tank and you'll be ready to hit the gym in style!

Ready Set Skort, $65, Outdoor Voices

Doing Things Tank, $35, Outdoor Voices

Instead of a basic beach bag, tote a bag with a built-in cooler!

Corkcicle's new tote bags are made with closed cell foam insulations and super-strong vegan leather handles, creating a sturdy beach bag that doubles as a drink cooler! They come in a myriad of sizes, including one that holds 48 beverage cans and another than can hold 16 cans and two wine bottles, plus many more!

Instead of hobbling in heels or settling for a flat, stand tall in heel helpers!

Ever attend an outdoor wedding or cocktail party and found yourself teetering in your heels on the gravel and grass? Avoid that treachery completely with a pair of Grasswalkers, a transparent strip you can append to the sole and heel of your pumps to create a stable platform for walking on uneven terrain.

Grasswalkers High Heel Covers, $9, Grasswalkers

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