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 an oil that helps prevent razor bumps (and burns); a non-greasy, skin-quenching moisturising mist; and a pair of shoes that teens across the country are saving up for.
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A unique wedding gift
Running out of ideas as you work through your schedule of new and postponed weddings? We’ve compiled a list of non-obvious gifts sure to delight any happy couple, including a Top Cuvée Natural Wine subscription for wine connoisseurs. It was first brought to our attention by wine writer and founder of Dalston Wine Club Hannah Crosbie. She told us that “many credit Top Cuvée with sparking their lockdown wine obsession — I think they deserve every bit of credit they get.” Subscriptions start from £30 per month and are on a rolling basis.
A spray-on saviour for dry skin
Strategist intern Fern McErlane knew she’d need to find a travel-friendly alternative to her trusty-yet-weighty bottle of Diprobase moisturiser. After Vaseline’s cocoa-scented spray showed up several times on her ‘For You’ page, she decided to give it a go. Sure, it had the signature smell of the rest of the brand’sCocoa Radiant line, but didn’t feel at all greasy. “It left my legs glossy and smooth to the touch, soaking in quickly,” she says. The bottle itself was a hit too: “The diffuser-style spray is built like a good plant mister, direct enough to cover a wide area without spluttering at everything else around you.”
A pair of highly sought-after shoes
This week we published the Strategist UK’s first ever Teen Poll, in which we quizzed more than 100 teenagers about the trends, stores, and pieces that they actually like. When we asked what one item everyone at school was obsessed with, a small cohort told us about Nike Air Jordans. One respondent named Lauren reported that their elusivity — rather than their aesthetic — makes them so popular. “They’re hard to get your hands on,” she says. “You have to enter a raffle just to get the chance to buy them, and then they sell out in minutes.”
A crease-proof under-eye concealer
A good under-eye concealer blurs fine lines and helps you look like you got your full eight hours, so we chatted to 15 makeup artists about their favourites. For an option that “simply does not crease,” makeup artist Alex Glynn favours the Soft Matte Complete Concealer by NARS. Available in an impressive 29-shade range, the high-coverage concealer can brighten dark circles as well as any uneven texture beneath the eyes. For results that last, Glynn applies the product with “a flat concealer brush, then blends out with a damp beauty blender before setting with powder.” Clients often tell her that the product hasn’t budged by the morning after application (although she really doesn’t recommend sleeping in it, and neither do we).
Some lofty foliage
Picking the right plant for your outdoor space can be tricky, especially when warm weather starts to fry tender leaves. If you like the look of something vaguely tropical, the Kentia Palm makes a serious impression. “It can grow up to 150 centimetres high, which will add height and interest to a patio or balcony,” says Stem founder James Folger, one of 11 experts we spoke to. “It is most happy in bright light — but keep it out of direct sunlight” and mist it regularly.
And an oil that soothes razor bumps and burns
“Razor bumps are very common and can happen no matter what your landscaping method is and how thorough it is,” says Ania Siemieniaka, the manager and owner of Freckle, a spa in Greenpoint, Brooklyn. To help prevent irritation, three waxing experts that we spoke to recommended the body oil by Fur skin care. For best results, our experts recommend applying for a few days around the bikini line to keep the area smooth and clean before shaving. “As far as I know, it’s about the only product on the market specifically for pubic hair,” says Lara Kaiser, an aesthetician at Brooklyn’s Carrie Lindsey Beauty.
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.