your shopping cart

What Strategist Readers Bought in November: Pill Organizers and Plush Robes

Photo-Illustration: The Strategist; Photos: Retailers

Welcome back to “Your Shopping Cart,” where we break out the top products that you, devoted Strategist readers, 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.

November is a bustling time here at the Strategist as the team shifts into high gear during Black Friday and Cyber Monday to track down all the actually good deals that are worth your time and money. Now that the crush has (mostly) subsided, we’ve decided to take a closer look at which sales and products our readers were most excited about during Cyber Week, from stalwart favorites to a few surprising new additions.

What were our top sellers in November?

Let’s start with the big picture. If you look at the actual number of items sold (rather than the amount of money spent), this is what we’ve got.

The ZimaSilk pillowcase, beloved by our beauty columnist Rio Viera-Newton, retained its top spot for the third consecutive month — clearly readers are loving this little slice of luxury. There were also some returning buys from last year’s Black Friday: The Revlon One-Step brush, Beckham Hotel gel pillows, and Outfoxed! board game were also top sellers in November 2021, marking them as consistent favorites. The Oral-B dental guard and the Scentered therapy balm have both made previous appearances on this list as well.

Some newcomers include Brooklinen’s super-plush robe, which Strategist writer Ambar Pardilla has gushed about so much that she has “convinced at least two people to buy it immediately,” the FYY daily pill organizer, which Strategist contributor Alyse Whitney calls her “Mary Poppins medicine cabinet,” and Crazy Aaron’s prediction putty, which, according to senior writer Liza Corsillo, “works like a Magic 8 Ball, but instead of shaking it, you ask a question and then squish it through your fingers until a tiny hidden phrase appears in the slime with your answer.”

Notably, this marks the very first month since COVID emerged that masks did not make the best-sellers roundup; we suspect all the gift-and-sales shopping bumped pragmatic mask-buying lower down the priority list.

What are Strategist readers gifting for the holidays?

Our most-trafficked article this month was, unsurprisingly, our main gift-guide hub, which contains handy links to every holiday gift guide we’ve ever written. And the top-selling product from that story? PopPucks, which we included on our list of the top toys of 2022 that are likely to sell out. Described as a “magnetic skate park for your thumbs,” you can flick, flip, and stack the two dime-size pucks in their key-chain holder to perform different tricks — perfect for anyone with fidgety fingers, kid or adult.

What did readers stock up on during Black Friday?

Throughout the Thanksgiving holiday weekend, readers flocked to our roundup of the best Black Friday deals, and many decided to take advantage of a deep discount on this month’s top-selling ZimaSilk pillowcase (which likely helped propel it to the No. 1 spot.)

The second most-purchased product from our Black Friday deals roundup was the Apple AirPods Pro. Former Strategist tech writer Jordan Bowman is a fan of these statusy wireless earbuds for their “thoughtful upgrades like immersive noise cancellation, a superior battery life, and swappable ear tips for a more custom fit.”

What did readers buy during Nordstrom’s Holiday Deals Event?

Nordstrom’s Black Friday sale, rebranded as its Holiday Deals Event, ran through November 29 and included lots of in-season items like sweaters, scarves, and slippers. Shoppers gravitated most toward this long-sleeve tee, which works wonderfully as a basic piece that you can layer under a sweater on especially chilly days. (Note that if you haven’t already snagged one, it’s still on sale.)

What about Sephora’s Black Friday sale?

Our roundup of the best Black Friday deals at Sephora was the fifth-most-read article this month, as beauty and skin-care products were a popular category during the shopping holiday. This Kiehl’s serum was the most-purchased item from the story, as all three sizes were deeply discounted. It comes with a stamp of approval from Dr. Michelle Henry, a board-certified dermatologist and founder of Skin and Aesthetic Surgery in New York, who says it can help “target dullness, fine lines, and wrinkles.”

What was this month’s most popular ode?

Photo: Rachael Griffiths

Strategist writer Rachael Griffiths was introduced to these tights by a friend who had been a competitive figure skater as a teen. Once she put them on, she was sold: “Although they’re thicker than my usual 40-denier tights, they’re much thinner than any thermal or fleece-lined tights I’d tried in the past,” Griffiths writes. She wears them under a pair of regular black tights and completes the look with a skirt and knee-high boots — and still manages to stay warm even in the dead of winter.

What was this month’s top celebrity-approved product?

Photo-Illustration: The Strategist. Photo: Carlo Furgeri Gilbert

Our top-performing post in our “What I Can’t Live Without” series was actress Hillary Swank’s list of favorite things, and readers were particularly interested in her snazzy hiking boots. Swank splits her time between Colorado and Washington state, both of which tend to be muddy and rainy, so she needed “shoes that can be all-terrain and go the distance,” she told us. Once she put on these On Cloudrock boots, she said she literally felt like she was “walking on a cloud,” adding that they offer a supportive but not-too-tight fit.

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.

What Readers Are Buying: Pill Organizers and Plush Robes