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 a coffee-table book co-written by Janie Hendrix (yes, of those Hendrixes), John Schaefer’s cast-iron skillet scrubber, and a discounted Dyson hair dryer.
If they belong to a Jimi Hendrix fan club …
In this year’s highly anticipated roundup of the most giftable coffee-table books, our writers and editors found 47 options, including the first official Seinfeld cookbook and photographer Brad Walls’s Pools from Above (the title says it all) — as well as this one, which was co-written by Janie Hendrix, Jimi Hendrix’s sister, and celebrates what would have been the legendary guitarist’s 80th year. It includes lyrics, memorabilia, and “a trove of lesser known and never-before-published photographs,” plus quotes from musicians such as Paul McCartney, Lenny Kravitz, and Drake.
… and if they need a distraction from skin-picking
In Strategist beauty writer Rio Viera-Newton’s pursuit to finally break her skin-picking habit, she found dermatologist-approved tools, including these ice globes. Icing provides “the closest sensation to skin-picking I can have without actually ruining my skin,” says Viera-Newton. “Ice globes are a great way to get that icelike effect without the risk of burning your skin. Not only does it feel satisfying to actually just touch and feel around the area you would normally want to pick at, but it’s such an incredible way to reduce swelling and make the pimple smaller.”
A stocking stuffer for the one who knows the best omakase spots
In our list of the best non-boring stocking stuffers under $25, we rounded up affordable and thoughtful gifts for every kind of person, including celebrity-approved styling creams, a folding knife, and this pair of yuzu koshō, a yuzu-and-chile-paste condiment that photographer Dylan James Ho serves at yakitori parties.
Your reminder to shop Sephora’s holiday sale
Calling all Sephora Beauty Insiders: Holiday savings for members end November 7. Just use the code SAVINGS at checkout to see the discount that applies to your tier, and score this recently released, heat-damage-reducing Dyson blow-dryer in a brand-new colorway. Note: If you’re lacking in both status and an Insider account, you can still take 30 percent off the entire Sephora Collection of beauty and personal-care products until November 7, no account required.
For the one who wants to enhance their color-treated hair
Strategist writer Rachael Griffiths says she was skeptical of these “little vials of semi-permanent hair toner that you mix in with your conditioner” — that is, until she tried them. “My formerly dull hair was a glowing, vibrant, salon-fresh-looking red after only ten minutes,” she says. “And because I’d left the conditioner on for that long, my hair also felt hydrated and soft and had a really dazzling shine.”
“A modern candle alternative” to an overdone host gift
Strategist contributor Chris Black has returned with a new installment of his column with advice for all of your super-specific personal-style predicaments, like which wardrobe basics a 30-year-old needs and which holiday host gifts are better than wine or a candle. Black says this room spray is “a modern alternative” to the latter with a scent the brand describes as a “union of enlivening florals and tobacco.”
For serious garlic girls
After struggling to chop garlic, which often became “more mangled than minced,” Strategist writer Ambar Pardilla searched for a tool that would do most of the work for her and came across “this little lime-green gadget” known as the Garliczoom. To use the easy-to-clean and dishwasher-safe device, “you throw cloves into the snow-globe-like top, roll it around, and pull down the top’s two ‘doors’ to release the cut garlic,” Pardilla says. “The more you roll, the finer the chop.”
An October best seller for fort-making fanatics
In our October edition of Strategist best sellers, many new items joined the list thanks to Amazon’s Prime Early Access sale, including some Strategist beauty hits and this top-notch STEM toy. With 44 rods and 25 connecting balls, this 69-piece set lets kids of all ages construct anything their imaginations can think up — or they can follow instructions to make a puppet theater, a Mars space station, a locomotive, and a circus tent.
John Schaefer’s scrubber for cast-iron skillets
When we spoke to WNYC host John Schaefer about his favorite things, he described this hand-size chain-mail scrubber as “totally worth it” for cleaning his beloved cast-iron skillet. “It was another of those moments: Where has this been all my life?” Schaefer says. “You rub it on the skillet on all the burnt-on bits. It loosens everything up so you can wipe it clean and maybe give it a good oiling afterward.”
Jeremy Denk’s homey bar soap
When we asked classical pianist Jeremy Denk about the things he can’t live without, he mentioned this blue-corn-and-mint soap, which reminds him of his New Mexico home. “This soap just smells, in a way, like a corn-tortilla factory, and it creates a kind of Proustian memory for me,” Denk says. “Their Man Bar is also nice — a quite different scent profile but also very good.”
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.