We write about hundreds of products a week. Here, in our version of the Sunday circular, we’ve plucked out some of our favorites — expert-recommended essentials, life-changing stuff you didn’t know you needed, newly launched gizmos, and the very good deals we uncovered while trawling through the vast online-shopping universe this past week, including a low-acidity coffee, sweat-wicking socks, and amoeba-shaped coasters.
A graphic T-shirt that Bella Hadid has her eye on
Some serious internet sleuthing led writer Clara Molot to believe she discovered Bella Hadid’s Depop account. The model appears to be leaning into the ’90s and early aughts based on the purchases she’s made: Von Dutch jeans, a Y2K tank, and vintage Playboy snow boots. You can also see the items she’s liked on Depop (several of which have sold since Molot’s story was published), like this graphic tee.
A book to teach the beauty of unique names
If you’re looking for a way to celebrate Black History Month with the kids in your life, reading books that lift up Black voices is a great place to start. Your Name Is a Song by Jamilah Thompkins-Bigelow is about a young girl who struggles with correcting people when they don’t say her name the right way, and how she overcomes her fears and learns to appreciate the music in her name. Kazz Alexander Pinkard, executive director of Hit the Books, an after-school nonprofit in Harlem, recommends this book, saying, “I wish I learned how to stand up and ask people to say my name correctly when I was younger.”
Coasters to adorn your coffee table …
Writer David Eardley noticed that coasters have evolved from simple water-ring preventers to a full-on home-décor statement that’s currently enjoying a surge in popularity (including DIY projects that are getting hundreds of thousands of likes on TikTok). These unique pink and green coasters are handmade in Bushwick, Brooklyn. The ropy patterns bring to mind single-celled organisms, puddles, or even something a little sci-fi, and the saturated color scheme brings a youthful energy. You can also get matching place mats.
… and coffee that won’t upset your stomach
When Claudia Soare switched from espresso shots to drip coffee, she experienced a “burning” sensation — until she discovered this peaberry coffee, which has a lower acidity than traditional joe. “I’m obsessed with it and drink it every day,” she says. “I can drink as much as I want and never have stomach problems.” The kinder-on-your-stomach brew doesn’t compromise flavor, according to Soare, who says this is “one of the best coffees I’ve tasted. I think even if you’re not a coffee drinker, you would like this.”
Non-boring oatmeal to start your day off …
Strategist writer Kat Gillespie upgraded her oatmeal game from Quaker to these Yishi oats that come in flavors inspired by the founder’s childhood breakfasts, including matcha latte, taro bubble tea, red bean berry, and toasted black sesame. Gillespie was happy to discover that “Yishi doesn’t add sugar to any of its flavors, which is a nice break from the tooth-decaying sweetness of other brands,” but said the “real point of difference was texture.” Instead of containing just oats, each cup of Yishi adds a mix of flax seeds, hemp seeds, and almonds. Gillespie says that the nuts and seeds “provide a satisfyingly gritty base, one that’s especially amplified in the toasted-black-sesame flavor, which was by far my favorite.”
… and poplin pajamas to end it cozily
In this week’s Steal My Vacation, stylist Beverly Nguyen details her picturesque Christmas trip to Gstaad, Switzerland. Between hiking, alfresco dining, and yoga, Nguyen made sure to get plenty of rest, which she did in these poplin pajamas from Tekla. She says that they give “a sense of familiarity and a feeling of home if I’m traveling somewhere foreign, providing comfort and ease.” The set is available in 14 color variations (many with stripes) and made of 100 percent organic cotton. Nguyen says the fabric is “breathable and lightweight, and they make a perfect start to cozying up to a fire or a good book.”
A steamer to make your potato dreams come true
If you’re a potato lover, you have to try Carla Lalli Music’s recipe for Potato Insanity. To make it, you’ll need a steamer, like this $6 YLYL basket, which Music says is convenient because it “doesn’t matter what size pot it’s going into, or whether that pot is wide or narrow. It doesn’t burn or splinter, which sometimes the bamboo ones do.” Music loves that it’s dishwasher safe (unlike other options that get a “weird sticky feeling” if they have silicone handles) and folds up compactly for easy storage.
A snowboard designed with women in mind
Watching Chloe Kim take home a second half-pipe gold medal at the Beijing Olympics may have inspired you to get out on the slopes, so we’ve assembled a guide to the best snowboards that includes this Gnu Barrett board. It was designed with specific engineering choices for women — including a narrower waist width for board control with smaller feet. Ali Gardiner, a retail buyer at Pete Lane’s in Sun Valley, Idaho, likes how the serrated profile “gives you added edge control when it’s icy” and notes that its longer camber — the raised area at the center of the board — allows for more assertive cornering and careful control (because there’s less friction with the ground to slow you down).
[Editor’s note: With it being the peak of the season, this board is low in stock at Backcountry and out of stock at Gnu, but you can sign up on the Gnu product page to be notified when it’s back in stock.]
A card game to maximize your fun …
Strategist writer and self-professed game skeptic Lauren Ro couldn’t help but enjoy this card game. Bohnanza involves managing the cards in your hand in a specific sequence, collecting sets of cards, and trading and negotiation. Ro was won over by the humorous art and the fact that it’s quick to learn and fast to play: “Although a full game can take 45 minutes or longer, everything moves at an invigorating clip.” Ro concludes, “I didn’t think I could ever love a game, but this is the only one I actually look forward to playing and introducing to friends when there are four or more adults in my home.”
… and sweat-wicking socks to maximize your runs
We spoke to Sid Baptista, founder of Boston-based Pioneers Run Crew, about the gear he uses to stay motivated and warm during chilly East Coast winters. As a longtime runner, Baptista knows the importance of having the right socks, which he says “make the outfit.” He recommends this sweat-wicking pair from Stance that he has been wearing since 2017. “I found them so long ago and I was rocking them, but now that they’re a part of the NBA, everyone knows about Stance’s socks, but I’ve been on this forever,” he says.
The Strategist is designed to surface the most useful, expert recommendations for things to buy across the vast e-commerce landscape. Some of our latest conquests include the best acne treatments, rolling luggage, pillows for side sleepers, natural anxiety remedies, and bath towels. We update links when possible, but note that deals can expire and all prices are subject to change.