Homestock+ Professional Review
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|Pros||Well-labeled, strong trauma shears, pocket CPR kit||Extremely durable case, quality tools, removable CPR kit||Brand name supplies, good bandage size variety||Compact, lightweight, quality materials, handy wilderness first aid guidebook||Light, compact, useful first aid book|
|Cons||Tight pockets, no medications||No medications, no first aid manual||Bulky, small trauma shears||Limited medications, no CPR mask||No gloves, no CPR mask|
|Bottom Line||A kit with a practical assortment of supplies for administering first aid on a road trip||A very useful, high-quality, and durable choice for individuals or small groups heading into the backcountry||A simple but robust kit with a supply selection that makes it great for families||This kit is a great choice for short weekend trips, containing the essentials to guard against many trailside emergencies||This compact and well-organized kit is great for a weekend getaway, with quality implements at an affordable price|
|Rating Categories||Homestock+ Professi...||Surviveware Small||Johnson & Johnson A...||Adventure Medical K...||HART Health Weekend|
|Specs||Homestock+ Professi...||Surviveware Small||Johnson & Johnson A...||Adventure Medical K...||HART Health Weekend|
|Weight||23 oz||22 oz||22 oz||10 oz||10 oz|
|Dimensions||7.9'' x 5.9'' x 3.6''||3.1" x 6.2" x 6.7"||10" x 7" x 3.5"||6.5" x 5.5" x 3"||6.5" x 5.5" x 2"|
|First Aid Book?||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|CPR Mask/ Face Shield?||Yes||Yes||No||No||No|
|Type of Gloves||1 pair nitrile||1 pair nitrile||2 pair nitrile||1 pair nitrile||None|
|Medications?||No||No||Yes - acetaminophen||Yes - acetaminophen, ibuprofen, asprin, antihistamine||Yes - acetaminophen, ibuprofen, asprin, antihistamine|
Our Analysis and Test Results
With a durable soft case, carrying handle, and multiple options to attach to a car seat or backpack, the Homestock+ Professional first aid kit is our favorite for road trips and daily commutes.
This kit uses Homestock+ branded supplies. The adhesive bandages are plastic-backed (rather than cloth) and use an adhesive that sticks well to itself and skin. The trauma shears are lightweight but surprisingly effective, making them a viable option to cut someone free from a stuck seatbelt in an emergency. Most consumable supplies have a listed expiration date of four years from when we received them for testing (including gauze, triangle bandage, and alcohol pads). Everything has a shelf-life of at least two years, including bandages and trauma pads. The most notable exception is the cotton swabs, which have an unusually short listed shelf life of eight months from purchase and 21 months from manufacture.
Some of our biggest issues with the contents of this kit are the medical tape, which is narrow and not particularly adhesive, and the single, non-woven triangle bandage, which isn't sufficient on its own to rig a sling. We love the organization of this kit. It includes labels for the item in each pocket and what it is used to treat – for example, a 'triangular bandage' is labeled as a 'sling, pressure, head bandage.' But the individual slots are very tight, making it difficult to remove and especially difficult to replace supplies.
Given its preferred use as a road-trip kit, the Homestock+ Professional includes a nice assortment of items. It contains enough basic adhesive bandages for all the minor cuts and abrasions of everyday life, including multiple sizes of butterfly bandages, at least 40 standard-size band-aids, and a few larger-sized bandages. These quantities make this kit robust enough for extended trips rather than feeling like overkill. There are ten alcohol prep pads and six antiseptic wipes — enough to cover a couple of minor incidents but not nearly enough to account for all the bandages. There is perhaps an overabundance of cotton swabs – we counted close to 50. But they are lightweight enough, and we appreciated the quantity for general hygiene while on the road.
Our main issue with the assortment of this kit is that it doesn't come with any over-the-counter (OTC) medications. Basic medications are a must-carry for us on most adventures, so it is worth supplementing this kit with whatever you need. Though there are a few other items that we wouldn't necessarily need for the front country – including the single triangle bandage and a dozen or so safety pins – we were largely pleased with what this kit offers overall.
We appreciate the supplies and features that make this a more versatile first aid kit. For one thing, it recognizes its own shortcomings and includes an empty pouch for supplemental items right at the front of the kit. This is the spot to supplement the included supplies with notably absent items, like OTC medications. We also appreciate the keychain CPR kit. This durable little pouch comes with a CPR face shield and a pair of gloves and fits easily on a keyring or in a pocket. The tweezers they included aren't precise, but the flathead design can be superior to needle nose tweezers for removing splinters and ticks.
The emergency blanket is practical in the backcountry – both for insulation and as a signaling device – but it is equally useful if you get stranded on the side of the road. Similarly, the whistle is a useful signaling device regardless of your environment. We appreciate the inclusion of burn gel, which could make all the difference on a car camping trip to treat a campfire- or cooking-related burn.
The outer case has multiple attachment options — two straps with snaps and two plastic rings — that make it possible to secure this kit to the back of a car seat headrest. If you wanted to take this on a shorter backpacking trip, you could even strap this kit to the outside of a backpack (assuming the supplies are properly waterproofed).
This kit has above-average durability. The protective case is soft but strong. Though the exterior is not waterproof, plastic inserts are sewn between the layers of fabric that help prevent water from making its way through to the supplies. The zipper also is not waterproof, but it is large compared to other kits we tested, and the teeth are not liable to bend out of shape too easily.
From a sustainability standpoint, very few of the contents come in resealable bags. This is fine because many of these items are meant to be single-use, anyway. But for supplies like the elastic bandage, we would like to be able to protect those items for another use.
At 21 ounces, this kit sits comfortably in the top half of heavier models in this category. However, considering its purpose as a front-country first aid kit, the bulk and variety of the contents are well worth the weight. And if you plan to keep this kit in your car, that automatically reduces the significance of this metric.
If we were to take this kit out on a weekend backcountry trip again, we would likely leave behind large, bulky items the cold compress (due to a few readily available alternatives, like a cold water bottle). This reduction alone would cut several ounces from the total weight. But there are still equally effective, lighter options we would rather grab for our wilderness adventures.
Should You Buy the Homestock+ Professional?
The Homestock+ Professional is a high-quality kit for those who like to have first aid supplies on hand while on the move. It's a nice addition to a car for everything from long road trips to the unexpected during your daily commute. It also comes with enough backcountry essentials to make it totally serviceable for a weekend hiking trip. This is a versatile kit for those who don't necessarily plan to go deep into the backcountry but also need an all-purpose kit for car camping.
What Other First Aid Kits Should You Consider?
If you want a kit of a similar size but need it to be a little more rugged, the super durable and watertight case of the Surviveware Small is a knockout. For something geared more towards at-home use, the Johnson & Johnson All-Purpose has enough adhesive bandages and antibiotic ointment to keep your family covered for the bumps and scrapes of everyday life. And if you do plan to set up basecamp in the wilderness, you can't go wrong with the substantial My Medic MyFak.
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