Tennis balls. Yes, tennis balls are the $2 saviour you've been looking for. Picture this; You've got a busy day taking pictures. Your first job is on the beach or in hills, it's been raining and there's mud. Real nasty stuff and all your light stands are filthy. Sure you clean them with a towel or something but your next job is in a four million dollar mansion! What to do!?
You get yourself some tennis balls.
Take your tennis ball and carefully cut a small cross with a utility knife (also known as a Stanley knife). I would suggest that the size of your cross doesn't exceed the size of your light stand's legs to ensure it's a snug fit.
Voilà! Your light stand is complete and as a bonus the tennis balls increase visibility to the public who are prone to knocking or falling over expensive equipment.