sunday circular

7 Things That Delighted Us Last Week: From Beanbags to Body Lotions

Photo-Illustration: The Strategist; Photos: Retailers

We write about hundreds of products a week. Here, in our version of the Sunday circular, we’ve plucked some of our favourites — expert-recommended essentials, life-changing stuff you didn’t know you needed, newly launched gizmos, and the very good deals we uncovered while trawling the vast online-shopping universe this past week, including a striking armchair, an eczema-soothing salve, and a shirt practically designed for sipping prosecco on the Amalfi Coast.

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A timeless wedding-guest shirt

Photo: Retailer

Ahead of a friend’s Italian wedding, Strategist contributor Chris Mandle needed a crisp, fitted shirt to style with his linen-and-cotton-blend suit. While DMing stylish friends for recommendations, he kept hearing the same, non-budget-friendly options — Ted Baker, Paul Smith, etc. — until one person reminded him of the button-down oxford from Uniqlo, previously covered in our Strategist guide to shopping the brand. “I decided to pick one up in this striped pink colour; something to evoke a sort of insouciant preppiness in Italy, without making me look like I’d got lost on my way to a Vampire Weekend cover band rehearsal,” Mandle said. It’s at a price point where “should you slop a generous glug of Pinot Noir down the front during a particularly heady encounter on the dance floor, it’s hardly going to be the end of the world.” Feel free to throw yourself into the Grease medley without holding back.

Some skin-quenching lotions

If you’re the type of person that squirms at the thought of lathering on a layer of lotion, or simply have oilier skin, you’ll like the feel of this Suave lotion. It contains aloe and cucumber, ingredients that are “moisturising and great for irritated skin without being too heavy,” says dermatologist Dr. Debra Jaliman. It also comes in a pump, meaning you won’t have to scoop up an excess of product in your hands, and is “light in texture and nongreasy.”

Photo: Boots

Meanwhile, to add some late-summer glow to your skin, this “gradual tan” body lotion will do the trick. Strategist writer Rachael Griffiths applies it liberally on days where her fake tan is looking a little lacklustre for a natural-looking boost that nourishes the skin. It also smells like apricots and is currently on offer. A win all round.

The self-tanning spray every beginner needs

To deepen your skin tone, or just even it out if you’re already quite melanated, we like this beginner-friendly tanning water by Isle of Paradise. “It allows you to customise your individual tan,” says facialist and skin-finishing expert Nichola Joss. “It’s colour corrective, really easy to apply, absorbs quickly, and leaves a smooth texture on the skin.” As it’s not a mousse, the tan is a little less intimidating. It also doesn’t develop a guide colour, meaning there won’t be any streaks or smudges transferred onto your bedsheets or clothes.

Seating to suit any budget (or space)

Mid-Century Wooden Armchair
£200
£200

Furniture shopping doesn’t have to feel like a fruitless odyssey, tempers fraying as you trek from one end of a massive shop to the next. We found 15 chairs that don’t sacrifice aesthetics for price. The rich, curved wooden frame, button tufting, and glossy faux leather of this armchair make it look more expensive than it actually is. We can picture curling up on it with a book by the fireplace (but not too close: see “curved wooden frame”).

If you need a fuss-free bit of seating for when guests spill over from the couch, this mustard-coloured cord beanbag is a far cry from the lumpy options of dorm-room days.

And a hand-soothing salve

Eczema flare-ups have the power to really ruin your day, week, or month. When we asked 12 experts how they manage their symptoms, Strategist contributor Chelsea Pippin said she loves this beeswax salve so much that she wrote an entire ode to it. “I use it most days in the morning and before bed. When eczema rears its angry red head, I apply it a bit more liberally and at concentrated spots,” she writes. Designed to soothe hands, the salve contains beeswax, sunflower oil, and moisturising powerhouse shea butter. When her skin is flaring up, Pippin will use it “several times a day,” but finds a tin will still last her for ages.

The Strategist UK is designed to surface the most useful, expert recommendations for things to buy across the vast e-commerce landscape. Read about who we are and what we do here. Our editors update links when possible, but note that deals can expire and all prices are subject to change.

7 Things That Delighted Us Last Week: Shirts to Self-Tanner