Welcome back to Your Shopping Cart, wherein we break out the top-five products that you, devoted Strategist readers, all bought in droves. Think of this as the tl;dr of the Strategist: If your like-minded brethren are buying these items, maybe you’d like to, too.
There’s a new winner in town. Our top seller this installment is a familiar face — the gold and snail slime eye patches that Rio Viera-Newton considers her very favorite finally takes the number-one spot after five (!) appearances on this list. That means that our former champion, the very effective shampoo replacement Hairstory New Wash, falls to third place, with second going to the spray that helps leather shoes stretch up to half a size (to be fair, the $8 spray costs only one-fifth of what the New Wash does). Our fourth-place winner is the Korean face mask that Drew Barrymore made Instagram-famous (and that Rio Viera-Newton loved), while rounding out our top five is the extremely popular Uniqlo cashmere sweater — a half-off $40 sweater that is still available (in black only).
Beauty writer Rio Viera-Newton, like the women in her immediate family, experiences chronically dark under-eye circles. To combat these, she uses a slew of eye patches, but her favorite is one with an unusual ingredient: snail slime. Says Viera-Newton: “This is my favorite under-eye product, and don’t make me tell you again why I love snail so much! Its regenerative properties not only work wonders on blemish scars, but also help with any kind of hyperpigmentation, including dark under-eye circles. It’s also super beneficial for helping with wrinkles and dryness.”
Sometimes you buy a pair of shoes that are just a bit too tight, but rather than let them collect dust in a shoe rack, there’s another way. Writer Caroline Bankoff shared her secret with us — the FootMatters spray that you can use to expand your boots or heels up to half a size: “I didn’t measure the shoes, but I’d say they certainly felt stretched at least half a size. After my experiment, I wore them out for a night that required a mile of walking and at least an hour of dancing — and arrived home with nothing more than the little bit of pinching that results from any extended period of time in four-inch stilettos. Now, I’m planning to use the spray on all my too-tight left shoes, from black pumps to some of my newly acquired winter boots.”
The brainchild of a Bumble and Bumble co-founder, the Hairstory New Wash doesn’t work the way other shampoos do (i.e., leave your hair clean but droopy). It won’t lather, but it will leave your hair clean. It’s not a conditioner, though it will moisturize your hair. It’s unlike anything you’ve probably ever used. Says writer Molly Young: “My long hair air-dries perfectly, with no ‘squeaky’ texture. It is shiny and falls in loose waves, like it did when I was a kid. I don’t need to blow-dry it. My chronic flaky scalp (sorry!) is gone forever. I customarily wash my hair every three days. With New Wash, once a week. When friends remark that my hair looks nice, it’s fun to say, ‘I haven’t shampooed in six months.’ Which is technically accurate.”
Maybe you saw Drew Barrymore’s Instagram of herself in the Korean mask Hanacure. Our beauty writer Rio Viera-Newton had to try it (she’s reviewed a baker’s dozen of them) and sang the praises of the pricey but effective four-mask package: “Compared to other masks in my regimen that typically target one issue, this mask covers quite a few bases: It’s good for