One of the products we were lucky enough to try out this past winter was the Zippo Hand Warmer. If you spend much time sitting outdoors in the cold, this is a product worthy of your attention.
Zippo took their lighter classic lighter design, and with a few changes, came up with what looks like a large lighter, but it has some holes in the lid, and no hinge. A catalytic burner draws fuel from the absorbent material, but burns more like a coal than a wick with a flame. And it will provide six to twelve hours of continuous warmth.
To use the Zippo Hand Warmer, simply fill the included filler cup with lighter fluid, based on your intended run time. There are marks for six and twelve hours, and you could probably work out other times with practice. You’ll need to keep it upright for a few minutes while the fluid soaks in. This is when you’ll want to put the burner back on top. After lighting, slide the top half back into place, and put the whole thing inside the included fabric bag so that the hot metal cannot contact skin. At that point, you’re ready to enjoy some serious heat for those really cold days.
Possibly my favorite thing about the Zippo Hand Warmer (besides the warm hands), is that it’s clearly designed for recreation. They mention it being ideal for sporting events, but if you’re outside with the kids, watching them play in the snow, a cup of hot cocoa will only last so long. And if you’re into ice fishing, it’s a good choice too. Since you can’t really drop it in your pocket and take it out as needed, we shared it during a variety of outdoor activities, handing it off from one person to the next. Note that unlike the chemical hand warmers that you use once and throw away, the Zippo Hand Warmer is designed to be used over and over again. It’s also quite warm. So warm in fact, that the instructions mention wrapping it in another layer of fabric if it’s too hot. That means it’s not for everyone, especially small children. But for only $19.95, it will replace a long winter’s worth of disposables. zippo.com
Disclosure of Material Connection: We received the Zippo Hand Warmer for free from Zippo, in consideration for review publication