sunday circular

8 Things That Delighted Us Last Week: From Lounge Shorts to Leakproof Bottles

Photo-Illustration: The Strategist; Photos: Retailers

We write about hundreds of products every 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 the vast online-shopping universe — including the super-durable water bottle Heather Morris says outperforms Stanley’s, linen lounge shorts model Lauren Chan says she practically lives in, and a NuFace that’s 25 percent off (but not for long).

An under-$100 Nutribullet for blitzing up school-run smoothies …

With autumn fast approaching (we can’t believe it either), there are plenty of seasonal sale items to take advantage of, including this Nutribullet Pro 900 — our best overall small blender — that’s 20 percent off with the code BACKTOSCHOOL. “I can load it up with fruit and all my other ingredients, and it’s perfectly smooth in less than a minute,” Strategist managing editor Kelsie Schrader says of this model. This 900-watt version is more powerful than the original, Schrader says, and the matte-black finish never looks streaky or dirty. Nutribullet’s sitewide sale ends today, but other discounts from Patagonia, Urban Outfitters, and Ettitude (August 30) are still on for a limited time.

… and NuFace’s megapopular sculpting device for 25 percent off

Dermstore’s Anniversary Sale is also ongoing (until Thursday), which means you have a bit longer to decide if you want to see what all the NuFace hype is about — with a 25 percent discount. Board-certified dermatologist Dr. Farhaad Riyaz says the microcurrent device helps minimize the appearance of elasticity loss through increased lymphatic and blood circulation, while facialist Shamara Bondaroff says it can depuff the eyes for a well-rested look (even if you’re not). Dermstore’s discount can be accessed with the code CHEERS, which applies to more than 6,000 products — including our best overall facial sunscreen from Elta MD, CosRX’s top-selling snail-mucin essence, and Sunday Riley’s brightening vitamin-C serum.

The spillproof water bottle Heather Morris likes better than a Stanley cup

“Not to bash any products, but I’m not a Stanley Cup lover,” actor Heather Morris said when we asked her about her favorite things. She says she prefers this spillproof Hydro Flask, which has a retractable spout and a “super durable” design. We agree — the Hydro Flask is our best overall water bottle, with many expert and Strategist endorsements.

Our best (less expensive) charcoal grill that still has many bells and whistles

When Strategist contributor Joshua David Stein asked experts about the best charcoal grills, Bret Lunsford, executive chef at New York’s Blue Smoke, says he uses this Weber Performer Deluxe for all of its “little improvements that make life a lot easier.” Compared to the original (which has the same 22-inch kettle nestled into a wheelable table), this one has multiple upgrades, such as a touch-and-go ignition switch, an expanded work space, an LCD timer, and a compartment to dispose of coals. And like most Weber grills, this one is sturdy, Lunsford says. “You can kick it around a little bit,” he says. “You shouldn’t, but it’ll be all right.”

Size-inclusive shorts for dressing like an off-duty model

Strategist contributor Diana Tsui asked cool people about their favorite lounge shorts, and Lauren Chan, a model and founder of size-inclusive workwear label Henning, says she likes this linen pair from Universal Standard for their ease. Because her job frequently requires her to be in complicated clothing, she says she lives in these lounge shorts at home. “I’ve tried them all, from sweatshorts to bike shorts to boxers, but these look the most elevated,” she says. “My favorite color is the tennis-ball hue — a real hit at the dog park!” The shorts are available in seven colors and in sizes 00 to 40.

The memory-foam pillow Ross Mathews says is really, truly worth it

We know Strategist readers are very fond of Beckham’s plush hotel pillows, but Ross Mathews makes the case for this head-supporting Tempur-Pedic one when we asked him about his favorite things. “I don’t know what I would do without this,” he says. “I’ve had it for years and it really has changed how my neck and my back and my whole posture feels.” Although the $200 price tag might seem daunting, Matthews says the expense is genuinely worth it, or else he wouldn’t recommend it. “When it comes to your quality of life and quality of sleep, this will make a difference,” he says.

An attractive wall calendar with an art-history pedigree

The reader ask: non-office-y wall calendars that offer form as well as function. The answer from Strategist writer Lauren Ro: a number of stylish yet practical options, including this bold Stendig calendar designed in 1966 by Massimo Vignelli. Its graphic look and massive size (36 by 48 inches) makes it feel like more of an art poster than an actual planner, she says. “It’s definitely a statement piece,” she says, “but the benefit of its large format is that you could use Post-its (or another sticky notepad) over the dates and move things around as needed.”

Biodegradable lawn bags that are better for the environment than their plastic counterparts

$21 for 8

As a green lawn guy in more ways than one, Strategist contributor Steven John says he likes these biodegradable bags for collecting grass trimmings, leaves, and other debris. But unlike plastic, he says, their paper construction allows organic material to break down and release carbon dioxide through exposure to air, versus methane (which is worse for the environment). John also says the bags are sturdy and durable enough to hold many pounds of organic material and resist holes from sharp sticks. “These have been my go-to lawn bags for the better part of five years,” he says, “and I’ve yet to have one fail me.”

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.

8 Things We Loved: From Lounge Shorts to Leakproof Bottles