Have You Turned the Backyard Into an Outdoor Office? Make It More Comfortable with These 9 Additions
When it’s sunny and 75, there’s nothing worse than being stuck in the office. But now that most of us are working from home, there’s no reason not to head outside with your laptop to send emails or take calls. There’s just one problem: Sitting in an Adirondack chair for eight hours straight isn’t exactly comfortable. That’s why we’ve rounded up nine additions that will make the time in your outdoor office much more efficient.
1. A Laptop Sunshade
The sun’s glare and a shiny laptop screen don’t mix well. That’s why you need a laptop sunshade, like this one from Philbert Design, that PureWow’s audience development director, Mary D’Alessio, considers to be a total game-changer. The flexible attachment fits around most 15- to 16-inch laptops, and casts a shadow over your screen so that you can see clearly, even on the brightest day.
2. A Chaise Lounge
If you’re going to be sitting in a chair from 9 to 5, it better be comfy. So, it’s worth investing in a chaise lounge (yes, even if you don’t have a pool). This model from Sol 72 Outdoor is made from weather-resistant synthetic resin wicker, plus an ultra-comfortable foam cushion, so you can lean back while you work.
3. An Outdoor Desk
Need something more ergonomic than a chaise? Since outdoor desks aren’t actually a thing (yet) we’ll have to settle for a bistro set. This three-piece from Heritage Bay has foam-cushioned chairs and a compact table, creating a makeshift workspace that doesn’t take up too much space. And since it’s not actually a desk, you can also put it to good use for weekend brunch or happy hour.
4. A Portable Laptop Charger
If you don’t have any outlets on the patio, invest in a portable charger like this one from Mophie, which can give your laptop up to 14 hours of extra battery life. It comes with a USB-C cable, so all you have to do is plug it into your computer’s USB slot and you’re good to go. If you don’t have a MacBook, just make sure that your computer has a USB-C port before you get the Mophie Powerstation XXL to ensure that they’re compatible.
5. A Balcony Table
If you’re working on a balcony or a small porch, you’re going to need a more compact workspace. And as long as you have a sturdy railing to attach it to, a balcony table is the way to go. This model from Amazon can be easily secured to the railing using adjustable hooks. Plus, when you’re done working, simply fold the table down and it’ll be out of your way.
While a laptop sunshade definitely helps, you also need sunglasses to avoid squinting all day. This pair from Ray-Ban features polarized lenses with 100 percent UV protection, and looks chic while doing so. Reviewers say they’re great quality and fit comfortably, which makes us pretty confident you’ll love them too.
7. A Portable Fan
Once the temps hit 80 plus, your backyard office could very well turn into a sauna. Enter: The Opolar Portable Fan. It’s battery-operated and has flexible tripod legs that can hook around the arm of your chair, a railing or be set flat on a table. Users note that it’s super quiet too, so its constant whir won’t get distracting.
You should apply sunscreen every day, but it’s essential if you’re going to spend the majority of your day outside. Apply some before you head out to the yard, then reapply at lunchtime to make sure you don’t get fried. Try a face and body formula like Neutrogena’s Ultra Sheer Dry-Touch SPF 100+, so you only have to keep one bottle on hand.
9. A Mosquito Repellant
Don’t let pesky mosquitoes ruin your evening workflow. Executive editor Candace Davison swears by this lantern from Thermacell to keep her area mosquito-free. “This lantern works way better than any citronella candle I've tried. You simply switch it on a few minutes before setting up outside and leave it on while you work. It releases allethrin, a chemical that's similar to a natural repellent found in chrysanthemums—which is a LOT more pleasant than coating yourself in bug spray,” she says.