L.L. Bean Company and Products Review: Get Beaned!

For over 100 years, L.L. Bean has been providing American and the world with high quality outdoors products, clothing, and gear. The company was established in 1912, by Leon Leonwood Bean, and in the beginning it was a one-man operation, working out of a single room, selling a single product. Over time, the company has grown and expanded. Nowadays, L.L. Bean’s flagship store is located just down the road from where L.L. Bean first set up shop, in Freeport, Maine.

The company ships products all over the world, and it is known for its quality merchandise and attention to detail. The company also practices what it preaches (so to speak), and has outdoor education program called “Outdoor Discovery School.” Aimed at kids, adults, and families, these activities take place all over the country. Customers can sign up, and participate in a number of outdoor activities, such as fishing, archery, clay shooting, and kayaking.

L.L. Bean’s catalog is incredibly diverse, and it includes equipment and gear of all shapes and sizes. Enjoy our look at some of their best-sellers. Some of these I have had the pleasure of testing out, others I have had the pleasure to actually own! Either way, I can say that I am very happy with L.L. Bean’s product range, and with its quality. Their gear is reasonably priced, and built for the outdoors – rugged, durable, and made to last.

L.L. Bean Rain Boots Review

1Made primarily of rubber and leather, L.L. Bean’s waterproof boots are perfect for rain, snow, and nasty weather in general. The thing you need to remember about these is to lace them up properly. You’d be surprised at how many people wear these boots without the right kind of lacing. You need good lacing technique, if you want to remain dry. The insulation on the inside is effective, and boots such as these are recommended for anyone who is planning on spending some time in the wilderness. They are comfortable for any kind of terrain, you can walk with them, hike with them, and they are strong enough to tackle anything and everything that comes your way.

L.L. Bean Backpacks Review

1L.L. Bean manufactures over 50 backpacks and rucksacks for school, for traveling, and for hiking. The designs are awesome and innovative, and they definitely grab attention in the best possible way. Depending on your needs, you will be able to find a pack that fits. The materials vary from one pack to another, but they are all high-quality bags which will last a long time (if you treat them right).

L.L. Bean’s school backpacks carry the slogan: from grade school to grad school. I had a classic L.L. Bean book bag for over a decade. The colors have faded, and there are a few minor spots of wear (from things I couldn’t control), but overall it looks great for a 12-year-old school bag. The price wasn’t over the top at all (I recall getting it for a good price at a back to school sale), and I’d take it anywhere where it is needed, without thinking twice.

L.L. Bean Slippers Review

1There is a famous line, but I am not sure who said it: “If you don't come home and immediately either take off your pants, or change into pajamas, then I'm sorry but you're living life wrong.”

When you walk through your door after a long day (or night), the first thing you should be doing is kicking off those shoes and letting your feet unwind. Now, I can’t afford to do that first-thing, because I walk the dog when I get home. However, as soon as we walk back in the house, I take off those shoes and put on my slippers. I can’t afford to completely switch to pajamas, but I have to get my slippers on.

L.L. Bean’s slippers are not your ordinary slippers. They are insulated, made of the finest materials, and are so comfy you’d think your feet died and went to foot heaven. It truly does signify the end of the work day for me, slipping into those Wicked Good slippers. You could read a billion reviews, but nothing will compare to actually slipping your tired (or lazy!) feet into those slippers. Highly recommended!

L.L. Bean Luggage Review

1There is so much gear in this category. There are tote bags, shoulder bags, handbags, briefcases, lunch boxes, duffel bags, and even rolling travel luggage (to name a few). There are some serious bags in this category, let me tell you. Bags which will make it through anything short of someone stealing them!

The one bag I actually had some extensive experience with is the lightweight pack-able duffel bag, which I have used as an overnight bag in many a-camping trips and what not. It is made of nylon which is tough and light. There is a strong handle grip with Velcro, and a hang loop. It is a good size, and it even packs itself into its own pocket with no hassle. That is a quite a feat, by the way, which not any old bag can do. Not well, anyway. The price is right, and it comes in a variety of colors.

L.L. Bean Winter Coats Review

1If you like pina coladas and getting caught in the rain, you’ll love L.L. Bean’s collection of winter coats and jackets. These are somewhat pricey, but you get what you pay for. If you are looking for a garment which will keep you dry and warm for the long haul, look no further. Materials – external and insulating – include fleece, down, leather, cotton, and other kinds of synthetic fabrics. They come in a variety of sizes and patterns, with varying degrees of warmth.

No matter which model you choose, you can bet that it will be the last coat, jacket, or parka you’ll need for a while. There are close to 70 items to choose from in this category, and all that is left for you to do is take a pick. When it comes to a winter jacket, you want to go with something which will be there for you when you need it. That is what these are about.

L.L. Bean Camping Gear Review

1The great outdoors are always sending out the call to adventure. We don’t all pick up on it, but make no mistake – it is there. You can choose to ignore it, and some people do that for their entire life. The thing is, once you get out there, you understand. The outdoors is THE place to be. Too long we have been governed by perfect angles and just-right temperatures. Whatever happened to just going outside for the sake of getting out? You know? Fresh air, campfire, dipping your feet in a lake. This is all within our reach, so why not go for it? It doesn’t have to be a week-long trek. You can just take a day an evening for yourself, or you and the family.

L.L. Bean has all the gear you will need to make the outdoors as comfortable as possible. I am not the type of person who feels that any outdoors activity has got to be minimalist and survival-oriented. Sometimes, it is nice to have some conveniences – like a lantern and electronic equipment – at my disposal, and this is especially true if I am out there with the kids.

Tools and gear fit for all kinds of weather – this is what you will find in L.L. Bean’s camping gear section. Equipment for men, women, and children – all of the highest quality – is there, at moderate prices. Everything and anything means exactly that, from binoculars and telescopes, through car racks and tents, to sleds, ski poles, and snowshoes. If you're shopping around, we've covered REI Kingdom, Coleman tents and sleeping bags,  Big Agnes, Kelty, Sierra Designs, and Alps Mountaineering products, and Thermarest Sleeping Pads.

Conclusion

Bottom line – great gear at affordable prices. According to L.L. Bean president, Steve Smith, the company’s Golden Rule is: “sell good merchandise at a reasonable profit, treat customers like human beings, and they’ll always come back for more.”

There is a lot to choose from, and the best thing you could do is to get yourself to a physical store, try things on, check things out, and see what fits you the best. L.L. Bean has a strong presence on social media, and it maintains a reputation of great customer service. The company’s guarantee on easy returns and exchanges is also a testament to its goal of complete customer satisfaction. L.L. Bean himself stated he didn’t consider a sale to be complete until the goods have worn out and the customer was still satisfied.

Like I said, the company’s merchandise is built to last. It is so very nice to see a company which takes that line of thinking seriously, and not just uses it as a marketing device. From the initial idea to the flawless execution, this company’s attention to detail is second to none.

Have fun out there!

As always, thanks for reading! Be sure to check out our top camping chairs and lanterns features while you're here at EduMuch!
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