sunday circular

10 Things That Delighted Us Last Week: From Paring Knives to Protein Shakes

Photo-Illustration: The Strategist; Photos: Retailers

We write about hundreds of products each week. Here, in our version of the Sunday circular, we’ve plucked some of our recent favorites: expert-recommended essentials, life-changing stuff you didn’t know you needed, newly launched gizmos, and very good deals we uncovered while trawling through the vast online-shopping universe — including ultrapigmented eyeliner, a candle for baseball lovers, and the socks that make Ayo Edebiri feel like “a rich white lady.”

Pop-of-color eyeliner for under $10 a pop

Razor-sharp cat’s-eye eyeliner has always been Strategist writer Ambar Pardilla’s Achilles’ heel. Rather than struggle with it, she gave up on lining her top lid altogether and instead decided to create her “own technique of coating the skin underneath my eyes with a thick band of liner” — her signature look that’s “part R.O. Kwon, part whatever Julia Fox is doing.” The liner she uses for the job is ColourPop’s Crème Gel Liner; though it costs “just $7 a tube, ColourPop’s creamy consistency rivals even the most high-end eyeliners,” Pardilla writes. “There’s never any smearing when I draw on my preferred semicircle shape, and once it’s time to shade it in, I don’t have to take out a brush to even out the intensity of the hues.” The liners are available in dozens of colors and so pigmented and long-lasting that they’ve stayed put through “hours of wear — including through crying sessions and sweaty night workouts.”

A candle evoking nights under the stadium lights

Homesick candles are inspired by the scents of locations, celebrations, and even astrological signs. Candle influencer Kudzi Chikumbu says the brand’s candles offer “really good bang for your buck” and make “a great gift.” In an unexpected collaboration, Homesick recently partnered with Major League Baseball to release a line of candles inspired by baseball stadiums, including Wrigley Field and Yankee Stadium, the latter of which features milkshake and churro top notes, cement and brown-sugar mid notes, and leather-mitt and red-clay base notes.

Delightful (and discreet) glass canisters

For our column Saw Something, Said Something, kitchen and dining writer Emma Wartzman took note of an Instagram photo posted by HAGS, the recently opened, East Village–based queer fine-dining restaurant. It showed a wall of shelves in the bathroom lined with amber-tinted jars, which held individual flossers, Red Bird peppermint butter mints, fentanyl test strips, tampons and pads, and condoms. She ID’d the jars as apothecary glass canisters from West Elm; co-owner and beverage director Camille Lindsley specifically chose the amber over the clear glass version for the discretion and uniformity offered by their nearly opaque tint. “Some of the things don’t fit as well as others, like the test strips versus the butter mints,” Lindsley says. “But these mean everything looks equal in a way.”

A water bottle that lets you drink from a pond without fear

Strategist writer Jeremy Rellosa has backpacked and hiked in northern Peru, Patagonia, Nepal, and on trails in the Northeast U.S., the Sierra, and in the Rockies, “particularly in the Sangre de Cristo mountains,” so he knows a thing or two about the best hiking gear to bring into the wilderness. When you’re out in the backcountry, having access to clean drinking water is crucial; if you’ve run out of water that you brought with you, a portable water filter can help “siphon out harmful bacteria from streams and ponds.” Rellosa uses this bottle with a built-in filter top so he can fill up his bottle “at a stream and start sipping through the straw — this came in clutch when my friend and I finished the water we’d packed on a three-day backpacking trip in Patagonia.”

Ayo Edebiri’s sumptuous socks …

Actress Ayo Edebiri told us she can’t live without these Karhu socks — despite some initial reluctance to even mention them. “Frankly, I really want to gatekeep these socks, but it’s not the humane thing to do. People should experience the feelings of these socks,” Edebiri declares. The socks’ thick, luxurious terry-cloth material “make you feel like a rich white lady, but times infinity. You have a clawfoot tub. You have a plush robe. You’ve got the candles lit. You’ve got a writer calling you and an architect emailing you. You’ve got these socks.”

… and Chef Carmy’s heritage T-shirts

Lots of menswear enthusiasts wanted to know what T-shirts Jeremy Allen White wore as chef Carmy in The Bear. After several theories were bandied about online, Strategist senior writer Liza Corsillo reached out to the show’s costume designers to verify. Cristina Spiridakis, who was the costume designer for the pilot, confirmed that the tee White wears in that first episode is from German brand Merz B. Schwanen, while in later episodes he wears Japanese-made Whitesville T-shirts. And though several people believed Carmy was sporting a Velva Sheen shirt in several scenes, it was actually the character Chester who wore Velva Sheen in the show.

A petite but mighty paring knife

We followed writer and editor Fanny Singer as she threw a 12-person birthday party at a mansion in the English countryside, complete with winding hikes, impromptu dance parties, and trips to the local pub. “What’s so great about a big group in a house like this is there are grand sitting rooms where someone is reading a book or telling a story in front of the fire. You can have everyone together but still do your own thing,” Singer says. She and her friends did a lot of cooking with farm-fresh ingredients, so she made sure to bring this paring knife with her because “it always comes in handy.” She says they’re very useful to have “in a pinch because there’s nothing like trying to chop garlic with a dull rental-house knife.”

Protein shakes for powering your deadlifts

Strategist writer Tembe Denton-Hurst “started working out in earnest in January of this year” and now considers herself a total gym rat. A few weeks into the journey, she realized she needed to increase her protein levels. “All the fitness girls were drinking protein shakes, so I figured I’d try one out too,” she explains. She bought this Owyn chocolate shake from her gym then immediately ordered a full case on Amazon after just a few sips. “I’m not a big chocolate fan, but this one isn’t offensively chocolatey or too sweet. I also like its thick texture, which makes me feel like I’m drinking a dessert,” Denton-Hurst says. “It keeps me full for about 30 minutes, which buys me a little time to prepare a post-workout meal or snack.”

Nonirritating makeup remover that smells like pie

When we asked drag queen Priyanka what she can’t live without, she said that Farmacy’s makeup remover “feels like putting Key-lime pie on your face — it smells that good.” Sometimes it can be tough to get “black makeup or eyeliner off around your eyes, but I love that this doesn’t make me feel like I’m pulling my skin.” She used to put a lot of harsh products on her face, including adhesives, which caused puffy eyes, rashes, and eczema, but she says this makeup remover is gentle enough that it doesn’t cause irritation.

The perfect pair of denim shorts

Photo: Abercrombie and Fitch

Every summer, Strategist writer Latifah Miles embarks on a hunt for jean shorts that tick every box on her checklist: “Long enough to cover my butt from all angles, lays flat without bunching around the fly, doesn’t chafe between my thighs, and looks nice whether I’m sitting, standing, or walking.” She finally found a winner in this high-rise pair from Abercrombie & Fitch, reporting “love at first sight” when she tried them on in the dressing room followed by lasting affection after washing and wearing the shorts many times. “I don’t ever have to untangle them from my thighs, constantly readjust the waist, or hold my breath to squeeze them on,” Miles writes. “Everything I’ve been searching for in denim shorts has manifested in the Abercrombie High-Rise Dad Short.”

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.

10 Things That Delighted Us: Paring Knives to Protein Shakes