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What Readers Are Buying: Fabric Face Masks, Moisturisers, And Board Games

Photo-Illustration: retailers

Welcome to Your Shopping Cart, wherein we break out the top-ten products that you, devoted Strategist UK readers, all bought in droves. Think of this as the TL;DR of the Strategist UK: If your like-minded brethren are buying these items, maybe you’d like to as well.

This month’s look at the things Strategist UK readers have bought features four new entries. Perhaps unsurprisingly, this includes fabric face masks and board games as we continue to live under lockdown, but there’s some old favourites in there too — like our tried-and-tested Bordy plant waterer.

This gel moisturiser remains the most-bought product on the Strategist for a second month in a row. It actually comes in two forms: a water-based moisturiser, which was featured in our roundup of the best moisturisers for dry skin (according to dermatologists), and a thicker, cream-based option. Both products contain hyaluronic acid and glycerin, which help lock in moisture while still feeling airy and lightweight.


When we spoke to dermatologists to find out the best moisturisers for dry skin, this came out on top. In fact, five out of six people recommended it, including Dr. Susan Binder, who says “it has a high lipid content, which really helps repair dry, cracked skin.” In fact, she says that no matter the reason for your dry skin — whether it’s dry in winter, dry all year round, or dry because of aging — this is a universally good choice.

This plant mister has now featured in our most-bought story for three months in a row. We first featured it in this recommended-by-experts story. Lisa Muñoz, interior plant designer and founder of Leaf and June, says this bottle is “typically something you’d see in salons,” but it’s her favourite mister for plants. “It’s small and lightweight, even when full of water, and it creates a gentle, steady mist.”

The Bordy, a water-retaining bird for plants, has been selling highly ever since the Guardian’s Coco Khan first told us about how it saved her plants from dying. This month it remained in fourth — Strategist writer Chris Mandle even picked one up for his indoor palm.

We’ve all been playing a lot more board games during lockdown, so it’s not surprising that one entered our top ten this month. This game, which combines a drafting card game with a whodunnit-style murder mystery, featured in our Recommended by Experts story on the best games for two players.

Though there’s still plenty of skin-care products in our top ten, this foaming cleanser by CeraVe has gone down two places this month. It was first featured in our roundup of the best face washes for oily skin, where it was called a gentle product, suitable for all skin types.

This matte moisturiser was first brought to our attention by Hadley King, a clinical instructor of dermatology at the Weill Medical College of Cornell University. King says it uses “sebulyse technology” to target excess oil, “the brand’s proprietary new anti-sebum ingredient” (sebum being the substance secreted by your body’s oil-producing glands).

This month, the government formally issued guidelines on fabric face mask use in the U.K, and we’ve been checking which retailers are selling them. This 100% cotton mask from Etsy was one of the most-sold items this month at number seven, in joint-eighth place with another mask (see below).

This triple-layered mask, also from Etsy, comes with a pocket for placing a filter in. You can read our expert advice on choosing, wearing, and caring for your face mask here.

At ninth place this month is this hair-repairing mask from Olaplex, which featured in our look at the best hair masks, according to experts. Stylist Ash Fritzler said she’s seen the transformation this formula can bring to her clients with once-a-week use. “It’s so versatile, I would definitely recommend it to anyone who feels like their hair is compromised in any way,” she said.

The final item in our most-bought this month was this face mask from Etsy, which comes in a cheerful bird print. [Editor’s note: This specific pattern has sold out, but the seller has a number of other patterns and fabrics available on their page].

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.

What Strategist Readers Are Buying This Month