The 7 Best Umbrellas of 2021

Keep dry on your rainy walks with the right umbrella

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The joke among walkers is that if you carry an umbrella, it won't rain, but if you don't have an umbrella, it will rain. If rain is predicted, an umbrella can be something you don't want to leave at home.

Wind is one of the biggest challenges of using an umbrella. You want an umbrella that won't collapse or invert in the wind. A broken umbrella isn't going to keep you dry.

The grip must be comfortable in your hand throughout your walk. You may like the traditional J grip or an ergonomic design. Unfortunately, the little knob grips found on compact umbrellas are often uncomfortable after just a few minutes.

Stick umbrellas are harder to carry rolled up but usually have bigger canopies and better grips. Compact umbrellas store well but often have a tiny, uncomfortable grips and small, shallow canopies. You may have to consider convenience vs. utility. Here are good choices in different designs.

ShedRain WindPro Vented Auto Open/Close Umbrella

ShedRain Windpro Auto-Open Umbrella

The Windpro umbrella is wind-tested to 33 mph ​and is able to resist inversion and breakage due to the wind. There are a couple of different sizes available with different arc widths and different lengths when closed. The auto/open close function allows you to both open and close the umbrella with a push of a button. That's convenient, especially if you are carrying a package or using your cell phone.

GustBuster Metro Style Automatic Umbrella

Gustbuster Umbrella

This umbrella comes in several colors. It is waterproof and wind-tested to 55 miles per hour. It has a 43-inch canopy and a larger handle for comfort. The "pinchless" open-and-close release system is a plus, as who hasn't gotten bitten by an umbrella once or twice?

ShedRain Windjammer Jumbo Umbrella

ShedRain Windjammer Jumbo Umbrella

The big 58-inch arc canopy of the Windjammer Jumbo umbrella will keep you dry, but it also compacts to 22 inches. Look for the comfortable three-fingered wood grip with leather strap. The vented cover is designed to resist inversion in the wind. That eliminates the biggest frustration of walking with an umbrella.

totes Micro Umbrella

Totes Isotoner Micro Umbrella

If you want to take an umbrella along as a lucky charm to keep the rain away, a tiny umbrella is the most convenient to keep in your pack or purse. These models are very packable, between six and eight inches long when folded. The drawback is the tiny knob for a hand grip when you unfurl them, which can be uncomfortable after just a few minutes. That said, these are a favorite as they are easy to stow away or carry easily like a baton once the shower is over. They are best used for brief showers or shorter walks.

Victorinox Automatic Open/Close Umbrella

Victorinox Umbrella

Sorry, it doesn't have a scissors, toothpick, or even a pocket knife. But Victorinox, one of the two Swiss Army companies, makes high-quality items, and this umbrella is no exception. It's a compact 13 inches until it automatically unfurls in three stages. It has a wind-reflex frame to prevent inversion and made with a titanium alloy for strength. The grip is a comfortable TPR-molded handle. It has both open and close with the push of a button.

totes Signature Basic Auto-Open Stick Umbrella

Totes Isotoner Stick Umbrella

The classic crook handle design is still preferred by many people. It certainly makes it easier to hang up to dry or stash while you're on the bus or train.This umbrella has a 43-inch canopy and comes in a variety of colors and patterns. It has an auto-opening design.

Repel Windproof Travel Umbrella

 Repel Umbrella Double Vented Windproof Automatic Travel Umbrellas

This compact umbrella is very lightweight. It is 11.5 inches long and weighs less than a pound, making it very transportable. It has the auto open/close feature that is convenient to use one-handed when you are carrying something. It has nine resin-reinforced fiberglass ribs that are designed to flex during wind gusts and not break or invert. The fabric has a Teflon treatment to make it waterproof.

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