Pandemic-Inspired Innovation

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Summer is beginning and we are starting to see a slight loosening of restrictions around the country, but things are just not going back to the “normal” we knew before Covid-19 became the focus of our lives. These last three months of sheltering in place, rubber gloves, face masks, and Zoom have profoundly changed the way we live. By most accounts, this virus is going to be around for months, if not years, even after the point where we are again able to eat in a restaurant and hug our grandmas. Think how exciting it is going to be to get a haircut again! Our lives are just not the same as they were.

Our new normal means there are new opportunities for innovation. We’re beyond the pool noodle hats and extendable beer arm novelties and starting to do some serious thinking about products that will help us to navigate a world where encountering a deadly virus is no longer a rare occurrence. Here are some areas that we are thinking about.

Personal Protection Products

2020 will probably be known as the Year of the Face Mask. It is the one product you probably didn’t own in February and now don’t leave the house without. There is plenty of room for innovation in coming up with more comfortable and more effective designs that can be sterilized and reused. Transparent designs that let us see each other’s faces again are especially appealing. Alternatives to latex gloves are also interesting, as are ways to make it easier to access hand sanitizer. Our hand sanitizer wrist band is a wearable product that keeps sanitizer literally on hand and ready to use at all times. UV-c light sanitizing devices, especially if proven effective on coronavirus, could be this year’s favorite stocking stuffers.

Health and Beauty Products

Taking your temperature may become just as routine as brushing your teeth. We’re looking for more accurate, easier-to-use, pocket-sized thermometers. Barbershops, beauty salons and spas seem to be the last places that will be re-opening. Many of us have had to develop hair and beard trimming skills (with mixed results). We expect to see new products that make home haircuts easier. The same goes for home manicures and pedicures. When was the last time we saw a breakthrough in fingernail clipper design? Just saying, it might be time.

Travel Products

It’s too soon to tell when vacation travel will begin again, but when it does, expect a completely different experience at the airport, on the plane, and in a hotel. Travelers are going to demand confidence that planes and hotel rooms have been disinfected. Will we see isolation pods around seats on a plane? Texting a flight attendant instead of pushing a call button? Will hair dryers and drinking glasses in bathrooms become a thing of the past? What new products will allow us to feel safe when we are away from home?

We’d love to hear about your favorite new pandemic-inspired product ideas. And if you need help turning your own innovative idea into a patented product, contact us at


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