What Do You Need to Work Remotely?
If you’re new to working remotely, or just looking to improve your WFH kit, you may be asking what do I need to work remote? Well, our team has years of experience working from home, coffee shops, co-working spaces, AirBnBs, hotels, airports, you name it, around the world.
One lesson we’ve learned? If you’re working remotely, you’ll want to make sure you have everything you may need for a day’s work with you at all times. The first thing you’re going to need in your mobile office is a computer—most likely a laptop. Whether it’s your personal computer or a laptop provided to you through work, you probably already have that covered (so we left it off this list).
Now, you may not need every item on this list. And just because these items work for us, does not necessarily mean they’ll work for you. But it should give you some pretty good insight on what you already have covered, what you’re missing, and what may just make your life a little easier.
So, without further ado, let’s jump in.
If you’ve never used a laptop stand, prepare to have your life changed. Seriously. The Roost Stand 2.0 is a great addition to any desk set up. Slouching in front of your computer all day is not good for your neck, spine, or your posture. The Roost Stand elevates your screen so you can sit upright. Plus it’s foldable and compact—meaning you can take it with you if your daily routine usually involves going to a coffee shop or co-working space to work.See Full Review & Buying Options
When working remotely, you’ll most likely have to make calls—either via phone or video (got to keep in touch with your team, you know). And a quality pair of wireless headphones take those calls to the next level. These Bluetooth earbuds have a built-in microphone and are surprisingly small and lightweight, which makes them comfortable to keep in your ears or easy to throw in a pouch or pocket if you need to pack up your kit. They also have an audio passthrough feature using external microphones which is super functional.See Details & Buying Options
No matter where you’re working, having a notebook within reach is great to jot down notes, record your brilliant ideas, or doodle your way through that three-hour conference call that could have been an email. We’ve found the Baron Fig Vanguard Softcover Notebook to be a solid choice. It’s available in three sizes, plenty of colorways, and you can pick it up with lined, blank, or dot grid pages—so you should be able to find a combination that suits your needs.See Full Review & Buying Options
The Fellow Carter Everywhere Mug not only elevates your desk with its classy vibe, it also elevates your coffee game with features designed specifically to enhance your coffee drinking experience. Its ceramic lining doesn’t hold on to tastes or smells like other coffee thermoses out there. Its thin rim makes sipping that liquid gold easy. And it’s insulated, keeping your coffee hot throughout the workday. Plus, the lid is leakproof—which is pretty important when you're filling it up with piping hot coffee and transporting it from the kitchen to the couch (or, from the coffee shop to home).See Details & Buying Options
Okay, let’s be real: one of the best parts about working from home is wearing comfortable pants. And the Public Rec All Day Every Day Jogger is definitely a comfortable pair of pants. They’re soft and super stretchy—if your WFH routine involves a midday yoga break, you’ll be good to go. Plus, these pants have that classic jogger style (a tailored fit with cuffed hem) and while we wouldn’t exactly call them high-fashion, they look nice enough that if you have to run to the grocery store or take the dog for a walk, there’s no need to change. Just note that they pick up lint, pet hair, etc, pretty easily so you may want to lint roll before heading out.See Full Review & Buying Options
Sleek, hefty, and oh-so-smooth, the Baron Fig Squire Rollerball Pen is sure to inspire you to write the next literary classic…or, you know, some really good meeting notes. Sure any old pen would get the job done, but why settle? It is, however, heavy, which may take some time for your hand to get used to. It’s also on the pricier side for a pen—there is a less expensive version made with aluminum instead of stainless steel (which also makes it lighter).See Full Review & Buying Options
Using a mouse typically allows you to navigate faster (compared to a trackpad). Of course, if you’re super speedy and efficient with using your laptop’s trackpad, you may disagree. (And you may not need a mouse at all.) The MX Anywhere 2 Mouse from Logitech is smooth, comfortable, and compact enough to be easy to pack if you’re taking your WFH office on the move. Plus it connects via Bluetooth or a USB dongle making it more versatile than your average wireless mouse.See Details & Buying Options
There’s something about using an external keyboard that makes your laptop feel more like a permanent work station. Especially when paired with a laptop stand and wireless mouse. And we’ve found the Apple Magic Keyboard to be a solid pick. It’s thin, lightweight, and pretty durable—we’ve been using the same one for years. Plus, it’s rechargeable via a lightning cable. Now, being an Apple product, it's (obviously) better when paired with a MacBook or Apple computer of some kind (which may be a deal-breaker for you).See Details & Buying Options
While laptops are getting thinner and lighter—which is great—they’re also sacrificing input/output ports. And that's where the Anker USB-C Hub comes in. Plug in this five-in-one adaptor to give your laptop three USB 3.0, one HDMI, and an ethernet port. We've found this to cover most of our needs from charging external devices to hooking up a second monitor to directly connecting to your router for faster internet (no one likes to be the person constantly freezing on video calls). We've been testing this hub for quite some time (over a year) and have been pretty happy so far.See Details & Buying Options
These no-frills Accessory Bags from Topo Designs are super handy for organizing all those small items you don’t want to get lost. They’re available in three different size—Micro, Small, Medium—and a handful of different colorways so you can mix, match, and color coordinate your gear. While they’re pretty simple pouches, we usually have one with us at all times.See Full Review & Buying Options
If you’re working on a laptop, you’re going to be carrying a charger to keep said laptop, well, charged. And, as you probably know, that charger is oftentimes bulky and messy. The Fuse The Side Kick is here to help manage that mess. Designed specifically for MacBook power bricks, this thing sticks on to the side of your charger PopSockets-style. Pop it up, wrap your cord around it, and your charger is now a tidy package. Unwrap your cord, pop it flat, and you’ll barely notice it’s there. And, let's face it: a tidy workspace—without excess cables tangled all over the place—is great, no matter where you're working.See Details & Buying Options
Sometimes you’ve got to look a little more business than casual (at least from the waist up). You know, presentations, meetings with new clients, trying to impress the boss. Enter the Outlier Albini Merino Broadcloth Button Up (or AMB for short). This isn’t your ordinary button-up shirt. Oh no, it’s Merino wool—so it has all those magical benefits like odor and wrinkle resistance. Although, because it’s Merino wool, you’ll have to make sure to follow careful care instructions—like handwashing and laying flat. Don’t worry it’s not too complicated. And if you’d like to learn all about taking care of Merino wool clothing, you can always check out our detailed guide.See Full Review & Buying Options
At 32oz, this bottle is pretty big. Of course, you could opt for a smaller bottle, but the large size means you’ll stay plenty hydrated throughout the day and you won’t have to interrupt your workflow (when you finally get in the zone) to refill your tiny water bottle for the seventh time. The Hydro Flask Wide Mouth Water Bottle is made with double-wall vacuum insulated stainless steel that keeps hot drinks hot and cold drinks cold. At the time of writing, it’s available in a ton of different colorways so you should be able to find one that matches your vibe. It’s also dishwasher safe.See Full Review & Buying Options
If you have a lot of USB devices that need to charge or be plugged in at the same time, you'll probably want to check out the Syncwire 4-Port USB Wall Charger. This handy little device turns one outlet into (you guessed it) four USB ports, giving you plenty of room to charge all your devices without a jumble of dongles hanging off your computer (or carrying a ton of wall plugs). Not only does this keep your laptop neat, but it also frees up those ports for things you need right now while the other stuff charges out of the way.See Details & Buying Options
Lucky for us, working from home, or remote in general, typically means a more casual dress code. Which is exactly where the Coalatree Evolution Hoodie shines. The soft, fleece-like material makes this hoodie warm and comfortable. It also has a baggy fit that adds to the comfort, but contributes to that casual vibe—it won’t win you any best-dressed awards, but we wouldn’t consider it dumpy either. Plus, it’s eco-groovy, made with coffee grounds and recycled polyester. Now, it’s doesn’t smell like coffee, but it also won’t smell like B.O. thanks to the coffee grounds' natural deodorizing properties.See Full Review & Buying Options
Perhaps that corner of your apartment you're calling an office doesn't get the best natural light. Or you work with people in different time zones and need to make video calls at odd hours (like when it's dark out). Enter the Lume Cube Air Lighting Kit. This thing attaches to the back of your computer with a suction cup, making it easy to take on and off—you can even attach it to phones and tablets. And you can control it via Bluetooth if you download the Lume-X app. Due to its small size, the light can be a little on the harsh side, but set it up directly in front of you (on the back of your screen) and you’ll have a bright, evenly lit video chat (and be the envy of all others in the meeting).See Details & Buying Options
Turn one outlet into three with the GE Wall Tap. When you’re working remotely, outlets can become a hot commodity. Either there’s not enough of them, or they’re not where you need them, so keeping a small splitter like this in your kit is easy insurance. The GE Wall Tap is one of the most compact splitters we’ve found. And each outlet is on a different side, so it can fit larger chargers than your average power strip. That's a win-win in our books.See Details & Buying Options
If you’re the kind of person that likes to have music playing in the background while you work, a voice-controlled smart speaker like the Amazon Echo is just about as convenient as it gets. (You can swap this out with another smart speaker, like the Google Home, if you're integrated with a different system.) Just tell Alexa what kind of music you’re in the mood for and she'll handle the rest. Of course, you will need a subscription to a music streaming service like Amazon Music, Spotify, Apple Music, Pandora, etc. The Echo is good for more than just music too. Check the news, the weather, go full smart house and use it to control your lights—the possibilities are just about endless.See Details & Buying Options
When you need to have the fastest speed possible or a more stable internet connection, you can’t beat a direct line into your router via an ethernet cord. But another cord adds more mess...until now. The Retractable Ethernet Cord from Cable Matters retracts into a neat little package. Simply unwind it to plugin when you're uploading/downloading large files, on an important call, streaming Netflix because you just like to have some noise in the background while (you swear) you’re working. When you don't need it, the cord stays clean and out of the way. We've been digging it—so much so that that we generally carry it with us, just in case (something we would not due with a standard ethernet cord).See Details & Buying Options
The Tom Bihn Side Kick is an organizer pouch and sling bag rolled into one. Use it as a tech pouch to organize and store all your daily essentials, bits, and bobs. Throw on the shoulder strap and head out to lunch, hit the grocery store, go for a walk…whatever you need to do. Not only is the bag versatile, but the organization is too. You can attach other Tom Bihn accessories—like the Tom Bihn Ghost Whale Pouches—via the O-rings and let your inner organization nerd run wild. Being a product from Tom Bihn, the craftsmanship is top-notch, the materials are durable, and at the time of writing, you can pick this sling up in several different colorways to match your style.See Full Review & Buying Options
Get to Work!
So there you have it—some items that we find helpful while working remotely. If you’re working from home, or usually frequent coffee shops and co-working spaces, having a well-thought-out mobile office is essential to making your workday run more smoothly. (If only people would stop emailing you!)