The Anti-Yeti

Why You Should Care About Igloo’s New $10 Cooler


Whether you realize it or not, you’ve encountered Igloo’s Playmate cooler. At a cookout or picnic, on a camping trip or day at the beach, you’ve withdrawn a chilled can or bottle of something from one of these iconic coolers (red or blue bottom, white lid). Igloo’s new cooler, the Recool, is nothing like the Playmate. It’s paper bag brown, it has a nesting lid instead of one with hinges and, most importantly, it’s biodegradable.

Igloo made the Recool to serve as an alternative to the cheap styrofoam coolers that are commonly found at gas stations and in grocery stores. There are several motivating factors there: styrofoam doesn’t break down and isn’t recyclable, styrofoam breaks easily, styrofoam coolers aren’t that good at temperature regulation and a growing number of towns and cities are making styrofoam illegal.

Recool address all of these. Furthermore, its molded pulp construction is stronger than styrofoam, enough so to survive drops and the jolts it’ll experience in the back of a car, truck or boat. Igloo says that Recool is strong enough to carry up to 75 pounds, and its 16-quart capacity will keep ice for up to 12 hours and hold water without leaking for five days. It isn’t single-use either — dry it out, and it’s good to carry food and drinks all over again.

No, Recool isn’t indestructible like a Yeti cooler, and it might not have the cold-keeping abilities of Igloo’s higher-end models either. But it isn’t supposed to; Recool functions for everyday, common cooler needs, without defiling the very environments you’d use it to enjoy. Plus, it only costs $10.

Gear Patrol also recommends:
Orca Podster Soft Cooler ($200)
Hydro Flask Unbound Cooler Backpack ($275)
Yeti Tundra Haul Cooler ($400)
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