All Personal Size Coolers

This is a listing of all personal size coolers we have reviewed.  We define “personal size” as being any cooler that has 16 quarts or below of storage volume.  These are intended for a single individual’s needs and are typically quite small and mobile.  This mobility usually comes at the price of having relatively short ice life.  Standard uses of this size include lunches, small picnics, and short beach excursions.  Due to the light size, you shouldn’t have to worry about carrying significant weight, so having reinforced or more aggressive handles or wheels isn’t really that important.

While size constraints can limit available features and performance, there are still clear-cut superior choices, and it is important to find the best cooling solution for your needs, even if it is only for a few hours. Keep in mind that just because a product has a set storage size, that doesn’t necessarily mean that all of that storage volume is insulated.  While that might not make as big of a difference on a larger cooler, for these smaller coolers that can be very significant.  As such, it is important to make sure that you have ample storage room for your items that need to stay cold.

Igloo Ice Cube

igloo ice cube coolerOur Rating:

 4.5 star

In summary, this is a solid cooler all around, and we definitely enjoyed the improved ergonomic design.  While it will likely not make it to the 5-day mark for cooling ability, it still is good enough and at a price point to warrant a weekend trip with it.  It also well-constructed apart from the minor handle issue and the great choice of colors and styles makes it a recommended buy from us.

Pros: Easy to transport, very durable, wheeled options available, many different color choices, great price

Cons: Not quite as long of cooling time as advertised, handle is somewhat prone to break

Read Our Review of Igloo Ice Cube Cooler

Igloo Marine Ultra Soft Cooler Bag

igloo marine ultra soft cooler bagOur Rating: 

4 star

Fantastic cooling life (for a soft top), great looks, and some helpful features are all huge pros for this cooler bag.  There are some build quality issues, however, but even with these the good just outweighs the bad too much and we definitely recommend this product for someone who is looking for a small cooling solution for the lake or pool.

Pros: Incredibly good insulation for a soft-side, multiple carrying methods, easy-access top, looks awesome

ConsA bit bulky and heavy, weak zippers and shoulder strap

Read Our Review of Igloo Marine Ultra Soft Cooler Bag

Port & Company 6 Pack

port & company 6 pack coolerOur Rating:

 3.5 star

This is a great-performing bag that also looks the part.  The construction is up to par and the price, while not amazing, is at a point that is acceptable.  The biggest complaint is the lack of storage size, but if you can fit your necessary items into it then you should be content with this product.

Pros: Great cold retention, waterproof, very mobile, premium feel to the design

Cons: Limited storage size

Read Our Review of Port & Company 6 Pack Cooler

Ao Carbon

ao carbon series coolerOur Rating:

 3 star

This is a very classy-looking cooler that does an alright job of ice retention and the build quality and materials are good enough, albeit it is a bit on the large side for a given size.  Also, the price is somewhat high so we wouldn’t mind if its performance was bumped up a notch or two.  It’s still not a terrible choice, however.

Pros: Waterproof, multiple carrying options, strong fabric, very attractive

Cons: A bit large for what it carries, not many external features, a bit expensive

Read Our Review of Ao Carbon Cooler

Coleman Excursion

coleman excursion coolerOur Rating:

 3 star

This product has had a minor facelift and performance improvement compared to the conventional Coleman chest.  The improvements are welcome and we definitely prefer the Excursion over the latter.  However, it is only available in 9 and 16 quart options so if you need a larger size then you are out of luck.  Overall it is an acceptable solution for someone needing a personal/small party cooler for an afternoon at a reasonable price but it will struggle much beyond that.

Pros: Lid seals pretty well, rather tough, more progressive styling than predecessor

Cons: Still a little expensive, limited sizes, might be too small for many

Read Our Review of Coleman Excursion Cooler

Coleman Soft

coleman soft coolerOur Rating:

 3 star

These soft coolers are well-made, attractive, and should last for several seasons.  There are multiple compartments and the removable hard shell is a nice touch.  Insulation ability is somewhat lacking but that is to be expected for this type of cooler.  Shop around since prices vary a lot on these and if you can find one on the lower end of the spectrum that are an OK buy, just don’t expect to be able to actually fit the advertised number of cans in one and keep them cold at the same time.

Pros: Look great, a lot of places to store items, plenty of sizes to choose from

Cons: Air easily escapes, exaggeration on how much you can actually store

Read Our Review of Coleman Soft Cooler

Igloo Hard Liner

igloo hard liner coolerOur Rating:

 3 star

This product performs surprisingly well despite its assumed limitations of being a loose soft-top that is relatively small.  The build quality and portability are more than acceptable as well.  The visual department could have a bit of a boost but it is not a deal-breaker, and we would recommend this to someone looking for a simple, mobile cooler.

Pros: Acceptable ice life (especially with ice pack usage), easy to store and transport, a lot of choices in color

Cons: No handle for carrying, a little too flimsy

Read Our Review of Igloo Hard Liner Cooler

Igloo MaxCold Workmans Meal to Go Cooler Bag

igloo maxcold workmans meal to go cooler bagOur Rating:

 3 star

For those looking for a rugged cooler bag that can handle some wear and tear this isn’t a bad option.  The insulation could be better and the zipper design is somewhat frustrating, but the product should last and is a fine solution for someone needing to keep their items chill for a work lunch or while working outdoors in the afternoon.

Pros: Multiple access points to stored items, tough outer material, very attractive styling, comfortable padded carrying handle

ConsInsulation performance could be a lot better, can be difficult to get to zipper while carrying

Read Our Review of Igloo MaxCold Workmans Meal to Go Cooler Bag

Engel Cooler/Dry Box

engel cooler dry boxOur Rating: 2.5 star

While the premise of being suitable for hot and cold items and also being waterproof is a unique touch that will have very particular applications, the core cooling performance of this ice box does struggle a little bit as a result.  It is well constructed, however, which means it should last a while.  For its pretty price, there are better options if all you are looking for is something to keep your items cold.

Pros: Can retain both hot and cold items, cooler can be submerged underwater without issue, quality hardware

Cons: Not the best cooling performance, a bit limited in storage volume, expensive

Read Our Review of Engel Cooler/Dry Box

Igloo Playmate

igloo playmate coolerOur Rating:

 2.5 star

An affordable, simple cooler that has been around for decades, the Playmate relies on its unique design and storied history with this update.  Unfortunately, it isn’t stellar at keeping things cool and you can tell that the durability took a hit with the thin plastic that was used.

Pros: Body is strong enough, classic design, affordable

ConsShort ice life, flimsy lid, not very many features

Read Our Review of Igloo Playmate Cooler

eBags Crew Cooler Jr.

ebags crew cooler jr. coolerOur Rating:

 2.5 star

The construction and intent of this product are there, but we feel that for a lot of people the size restrictions will be just too much.  If you are able to fulfill your needs with its small storage volume then it should suffice, and obviously it is incredibly mobile which is a plus.  But it is pretty expensive considering how little it can really hold.

Pros: Very mobile, decent build quality, a lot of additional storage pocket, looks nice

Cons: Expensive for the size, very limited in insulated storage volume

Read Our Review of eBags Crew Cooler Jr. Cooler

Dalix Cooler Bag

dalix cooler bagOur Rating:

 2 star

Unfortunately, this product has several issues, the biggest of which are based around the subpar ice life and the shoddy construction.  The price, while somewhat affordable, is still too much for what you are getting with this item.

Pros: Multiple carrying options, additional front storage pockets, decent price

Cons: Cooling ability could be better, strap is very weak, only two color choices

Read Our Review of Dalix Cooler Bag

Grizzly 

grizzly coolerOur Rating:

 4.5 star

In terms of ice life, these ice chests are some of the best on the market.  High-quality materials and optimal construction is used and it shows up both in the performance as well as the looks.  The only drawback is the price but if someone is looking for a cooler that will last them for years and provide continuous great performance it is well worth the price.

Pros: Some of the best ice life on the market, incredibly durable, aggressive look, easy to carry considering the size

Cons: Very expensive, heavy

Read Our Review of Grizzly Cooler

Igloo Legend

igloo legend coolerOur Rating: 

3.5 star

Overall this is a simple, modular, and relatively effective cooler that can be had for a reasonable price.  It won’t win any beauty contests but its effective design and helpful key features make it a buy for anybody looking for a space-saving and simple cooling solution for a small outing.

Pros: Quite good cooling ability, very mobile, lid converts to tray and cup holder, great price

Cons: Handle can be a little weak, very boring styling

Read Our Review of Igloo Legend Cooler

Kysek Dry Bag

kysek dry bag review

Our Rating: 

  3.5 star

These dry bags are assembled with great construction methods and have a similarly tough outer shell that we have became used to from Kysek.  However, you are giving up a significant ability to keep items chilled for very long and are still having to pay a premium for this high-performance bag.

Pros: Quality construction, Super resilient outside fabric, Attractive looks

Cons: Aren’t designed to store cold items, Expensive considering they aren’t really coolers, Not as many features

Read Our Review of Kysek Dry Bag

Ao Vinyl

  ao vinyl coolerOur Rating:

 3 star

A tough product that has a good ice life for being a soft-sided cooler, while adhering to some of the benefits that those types of coolers bring.  It does fall a bit short on the looks category, though.  However for someone looking for a rugged but still somewhat mobile cooling solution this should do the trick.

Pros: Great cooling ability, two carrying choices, strong material Cons: Still prone to scratches, not many external features, looks are questionable

Read Our Review of Ao Vinyl Cooler

Coleman Fliplid

  coleman fliplid coolerOur Rating:

 3 star

One of the smallest hard plastic coolers you can buy, it definitely fills the void for those looking for a cooler to hold enough for a short lunch or trip outside.  Insulation is lacking but that is to be expected.  However, we really like the inclusion of the internal cup holders.  A decent purchase for the price as long as you understand the pros and cons of such a small cooler.

Pros: Extremely mobile, great implementation of cup holders, affordable

Cons: Short ice life, very limited carrying space, not a lot of color choices

Read Our Review of Coleman Fliplid Cooler

Dalix Cooler and Lunch Bag

dalix cooler and lunch bagOur Rating:

 3 star

A decent price and acceptable cooling ability make this a soft buy.  While it does struggle with storage size and the walls of the bag are a bit thin for our liking, the pros still outweigh the cons here if you just need a simple lunch bag.

Pros: Good cooling performance for the price, multiple storage areas, affordable

Cons: Quite large for a lunch bag, strap is somewhat weak, items in the top compartment can crush ones in the bottom compartment

Read Our Review of Dalix Cooler and Lunch Bag

Igloo MaxCold Hard Top Gripper

igloo maxcold hard top gripper coolerOur Rating:

 3 star

This is a decent day cooler for those looking for a mobile solution that has an acceptable cooling ability.  It is lightweight and easy to carry and looks nice overall.  There are some questionable issues with the zipper life, however.

Pros: Acceptable job at keeping items cool, easy to carry, modern styling

ConsZipper can get stuck easily and there is only one of them, not enough additional features

Read Our Review of Igloo MaxCold Hard Top Gripper

Igloo Hard Liner

igloo hard liner coolerOur Rating:

 3 star

This product performs surprisingly well despite its assumed limitations of being a loose soft-top that is relatively small.  The build quality and portability are more than acceptable as well.  The visual department could have a bit of a boost but it is not a deal-breaker, and we would recommend this to someone looking for a simple, mobile cooler.

Pros: Acceptable ice life (especially with ice pack usage), easy to store and transport, a lot of choices in color

Cons: No handle for carrying, a little too flimsy

Read Our Review of Igloo Hard Liner Cooler

eBags Lunch

ebags lunch coolerOur Rating:

 2.5 star

A pretty straightforward approach that does the primary intention (keep items cool) well enough, and will be a viable lunch companion.  However, beyond that there isn’t much to get excited about, and the size, boring design, and relatively high price for the size are all definite downfalls.

Pros: Will fill its purpose in regards to keeping items cool until lunch, high-quality materials, strong strap

Cons: Very limited in storage size, expensive for how much space you are getting, very plain styling

Read Our Review of eBags Lunch Cooler

Everest Cooler Lunch Bag

  everest cooler lunch bagOur Rating:

 2.5 star

There really isn’t anything to get excited about here.  This lunch bag is simply too small for most people’s needs and even if it will work, for the price you can find better cooling performance, features, and aesthetics.

Pros: Decent cool life, lightweight and easy to carry

Cons: Expensive for the size, very limited size, boring appearance

Read Our Review of Everest Cooler Lunch Bag

Igloo Gripper

igloo gripperOur Rating:

 2.5 star

A solid, safe choice for those looking for a small gripper to pack their lunch or a few afternoon drinks.   One of the most mobile options available, but the size might be too small for some.  If space requirements aren’t an issue then it should be an acceptable choice that should last you a while.

Pros: Very mobile, decent construction, wide color selection

Cons: Won’t keep items cool for very long, storage volume might be an issue, somewhat expensive for the size

Read Our Review of Igloo Gripper Cooler

EasyLunchboxes Insulated Lunch Box Cooler Bag

easylunchboxes insulated lunch box cooler bagOur Rating:

 2 star

Lack of storage volume, poor cooling, few choices in features, and an overall boring design really turns us off from this cooler bag.  In addition, the price is oftentimes now even in the budget range, where we might be more lenient towards some shortcomings.

Pros: Very light, decent build quality

Cons: Poor cooling ability, too small of storage volume, boring design

Read Our Review of EasyLunchboxes Insulated Lunch Box Cooler Bag

Igloo Backpack

igloo backpack coolerOur Rating:

 2 star

There are some major struggles such as low cooling time and poor construction, but the sheer mobility and convenience factor of being a backpack are the main selling points here.  As long as you don’t overload it and don’t be too rough on the straps or zippers it should suffice as a lunch backpack for a while but don’t expect much beyond that as there is very little carrying room, especially for the price. There are some major struggles such as low cooling time and poor construction, but the sheer mobility and convenience factor of being a backpack are the main selling points here.  As long as you don’t overload it and don’t be too rough on the straps or zippers it should suffice as a lunch backpack for a while but don’t expect much beyond that as there is very little carrying room, especially for the price.

Pros: Very mobile, very attractive styling

Cons: May struggle with enough storage space, can be difficult to access items, weak strap, expensive for size

Read Our Review of Igloo Backpack Cooler