What I post about when I weary of posting about clothes

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If you live with dogs in a city, poop bags become a big part of your life: it’s the law—and just plain decent—to clean up after your pet. I’ve never gotten very excited about them until I discovered My Alpha Pet bags, which are both made of cornstarch and 100% biodegradable, and are so easy to get open, unlike their plastic-ier counterparts. I have about 10 in my bag at any one time, because I am pathologically fearful of getting caught without enough, and because I’m just a good citizen that way. Now tell me, what everyday household item has changed your life?

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85 Thoughts on What I post about when I weary of posting about clothes
    lindalindanyc
    5 Oct 2019
    2:10pm

    I’m a couple of days behind (such a week!), but I feel so strongly about the life-changing properties of this long iphone-charging cord, that I am adding to the list: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0177PDBII/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o00_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1 I have one in each room of my not-so-huge NYC apartment — and also in my office at work. I have been gently mocked by numerous friends who, in short order, have acquired one for themselves & promptly apologized 🙂 Life changing! xo

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    Candy
    3 Oct 2019
    10:58am

    A wedge pillow. My husband’s snoring was destroying my sleep and his, to say nothing of our relationship, until we ordered a wedge pillow to prop him up. Snoring improved 90%. So did my mood and fatigue. We even got an inflatable one for when we travel. A life-changer.

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      Frances
      3 Oct 2019
      12:19pm

      An inflatable one! That’s brilliant! I have had three spinal surgeries and despaired of ever sleeping without pain, but finally found relief sleeping with a wedge pillow. I’ve been worried about travelling – will I be able to sleep? will my back hurt? – but an inflatable wedge never occurred to me. Thank you!

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      Viajera
      3 Oct 2019
      1:52pm

      Would it be possible to see a link to one of these? Or are they interchangeable?

      Thanks!

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        Candy
        3 Oct 2019
        7:31pm

        Both were ordered on Amazon.
        The inflatable portable wedge is from Sleepwell. https://amzn.to/3325Ztc
        The foam bed wedge is from Intevision: https://amzn.to/2pBPPIm

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        Candy
        3 Oct 2019
        7:36pm

        Hi Viajera — I’ve tried a couple times to post the links, but was unsuccessful. Both were ordered on Amazon.
        The foam bed wedge is by Intevision 25x24x12″, white with a removable, washable cover, $39.98
        The inflatable portable wedge is by Sleepwell with a deflate/inflate valve and soft gray surface, $39.99

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          Viajera
          4 Oct 2019
          2:55pm

          Candy! Thank you, it did work in the end … that is very kind of you, to tell me these descriptions.

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    Mindy
    3 Oct 2019
    10:13am

    1. Mentrual cup – I’m bothered by the fact that I didn’t discover this until I was 40. Started with the Diva Cup, but switched to the Saalt cup, which I like much better. Game changer! 2. FoodSaver. My husband bought me one about ten years ago and I’m on my second one. It’s been great, especially for a family of five. Allows me to freeze dinners without freezer burn and encourages me to make double/triple batches of dinners and freezing for later eating – which means a home cooked meal without cooking on nights that are hectic. 3. Cuisinart MSC-600, which is a slow cooker with browning and steaming capabilities. Again, time saver during the school year, where I can have dinner put together in the morning and be done. Love it more than seems reasonable.

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      Clatie
      3 Oct 2019
      10:17am

      I had a divacup for the last 10 years of my menstrual life and I LOVED that thing. Long haul, flights, vacations, you name it – never a leak.

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        Mindy
        3 Oct 2019
        10:20am

        I switched to Saalt, which has a softer stem, so I don’t feel that anymore.

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          Clatie
          3 Oct 2019
          1:49pm

          I never felt my diva cup. I’m glad to know there are so many choices now!

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        Jenny
        3 Oct 2019
        2:12pm

        I loved my diva cup, but now in peri-menopause, I find I’m overflowing & leaking. Any recommendations for crazy heavy flow?

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          Mindy
          3 Oct 2019
          3:31pm

          I’m in peri-menopause too and my weeks can vary from barely there flow, normal or a flash flood warning being issued. When I have a heavy flow, I just know I need to stop mid-day once or twice to empty out or else there will be some leakage. No way around it.

          I would try a different cup, though unfortunately, it’s not cheap to try a bunch of different ones. I found that when it was heavy the Diva would start slipping – never falling out, but always felt like it was “crowning” for lack of a better word, thus very awkward feeling. I switched to Saalt and haven’t had a problem yet and it’s been 8 months.

          There are so many out there that I would just start looking around. I also invested in the Pixie Wash and cup steamer to help keep it like new.

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          Sarah
          4 Oct 2019
          12:22am

          Mirena IUD. It takes about 3-4 months to kick in and reduce your flow to a trickle, but once it does, happy days.

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            Janet
            5 Oct 2019
            4:34pm

            Yup. Haven’t had a period since I got mine in 6 years ago, and I had super heavy and irregular periods. But before that I had a Diva Cup and that was an excellent solution too.

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    D.Morgendorffer
    3 Oct 2019
    11:03am

    My Sori Yanagi tea kettle. I was frustrated with previous kettles having spouts that left me uncertain on the condition of the interior and were awkward for any cleaning. The spout on the Sori Yanagi is easy to clean with a little bottle brush if needed, but I have to say, the steel stays in pretty good condition. The design of this kettle means water comes to boil in 3 minutes. Plus, the design of it provides some beauty in ordinary domestic life. My augur power drill attachment for planting bulbs. The first time I planted 80 English bluebells around our giant oak tree, I did it by hand. With all the roots, it was hard to plant them deep, and after the first blooming, my now-sworn enemies, the squirrels, got them. The second time I planted 80 English bluebells, I used the augur. My body thanked me for it and so far the bulbs have not been unearthed. Take that, squirrels!

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      D.Morgendorffer
      3 Oct 2019
      11:30am

      It occurs to me that I should clarify that my vendetta against the squirrels consists of me giving them withering stares and thinking in my head, those jerks. I want to assure all supporters of wildlife, which I am one, that our backyard is still very much a squirrel gangsta’s paradise.

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        Mindy
        3 Oct 2019
        11:53am

        Not that I wish them harm, but let’s face it, squirrels are just rats that evolved to accessorize with a cute tail.

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          Mamavalveeta03
          3 Oct 2019
          12:10pm

          Hear, hear!

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          Kimbersam
          3 Oct 2019
          1:47pm

          Rats in Haute Couture.

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    Jax
    3 Oct 2019
    11:07am

    A Coway air purifier and a smaller Levoit air purifier. They clean the air in my apartment and were critically helpful during the last two big wildfire “seasons” in California. (Knock on wood for this fall).

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    Caroline
    3 Oct 2019
    11:08am

    Ok. This is more of a quest.
    I once saw a girl with a smallish poop picker upper thing that scoops the poop with the bag. Then you can drop it in the trash without ever touching the poop. I’ve been looking for one for years..!

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      Kit
      3 Oct 2019
      12:17pm

      My partner has hacked a pharmaceutical bottle with a slit in the side to hold the poop bags. It hangs off the leash with zip tie. Nice.

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    KATHLEEN ROWAN
    3 Oct 2019
    11:18am

    Dog hair lint rollers… I have one in each room of my house, in my car, in my bag and in my desk at work.

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    Joannawnyc
    3 Oct 2019
    11:24am

    Neti pot. I was totally AGAINST it depsite the urging of my ENT and my sister (who said it had changed her life) until I got desperate and tried it, and it did change my life. Now I’m a bit of of an evangelist. The Diva cup was great, too! Otherwise … I got a handheld ginger/garlic grater from Microplane and a Kevlar glove, which does make grating ginger and garlic easier and less wasteful and the cleanup is faster than other methods, I think. But I don’t know if it’s life-changing

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      Mindy
      3 Oct 2019
      11:55am

      Second the neti pot. It does work wonders. So does gargling warm salt water for a sore throat.

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      Mamavalveeta03
      3 Oct 2019
      12:11pm

      We call it the snot rocket in our house.

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    Jaimie
    3 Oct 2019
    11:25am

    Kombucha! I’m addicted and don’t ever want to be without it.

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      Stacey
      3 Oct 2019
      4:08pm

      Do you make your own? I’m a recent convert and I’m thinking I should try making it. Supposedly it’s easy to do and cost-effective.

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        y.k.
        4 Oct 2019
        1:21am

        i hesitated b/c i thought i might screw it up and grow some kind of terrible mold, but it was easy and – truly, so much more delicious than any store bought – a different level of amazing.

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    c.w.
    3 Oct 2019
    11:27am

    I usually stock up on poop bags at the beach or the dog park, but when needs must I use those same bags. I am all about my Dyson hand vac. It’s perfect for quick zips around area rugs, getting into corners and removing Betty fur off furniture. It is loud, but it is fierce. Question…did you buy a new couch, Kim? I am falling down endless rabbits holes looking at couches online. I need two––one for sitting and one sleeper. If anyone in this group has a recommendation picture me sitting at your virtual feet.

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      Kim France
      3 Oct 2019
      12:07pm

      I’ve decided to stick with my current sofa for the time being, C.W., but I did get it deep-cleaned, which was transformative.

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        c.w.
        3 Oct 2019
        12:57pm

        Smart. The sofas that are out there from Design Within/(way outta) Reach on down are not comfortable. aaarrrrggghhh.

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      Elise Gilmer
      4 Oct 2019
      12:57pm

      After ten years on a IKEA sofa, I decided I was grown enough to spend over $1K on a real adult sofa. Ordered online, sight unseen (but after much exhaustive research). Sven from Article is a real winner. Mine is the aqua tweed. I’m really happy with it and the buying process was very smooth.
      Very, very comfy for sitting and napping. Very classy IMO. Caveats – low back, you will need an ottoman for sitting (it’s VERY deep), and while the fabric is durable to human activity, not so much for cats. They seem to adore scratching tweed.
      If you have any Q’s feel free to drop me a reply.

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    Kathi
    3 Oct 2019
    11:58am

    I love my Chi Lava hair curler, makes my wavy/frizzy hair smoother & less Janis Joplin-esque. I dont have a dog, but would use those earth friendly poop bags when scooping my cat’s litter box (right now I use paper bags, not plastic).

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      Anne
      3 Oct 2019
      5:23pm

      Yes! I just ordered some for my litter scooping needs.

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    cynthia
    3 Oct 2019
    12:00pm

    Not exactly household, but not truly fashion either — I bought myself a new sock wardrobe from Bombas. I don’t know if they’re the best socks out there, but it seems like most stores only sell medium-sized socks these days and I was able to get size small from Bombas. They stay firmly in place while I walk. This allows me to do way more dog walking (& poop scooping). I’m also moving away from more flattering no-show socks to hiking socks that keep the grit out of my shoes. Also interested in getting into real hiking. BTW: a company in my area makes compostable pet waste bags: http://biobagusa.com/products/retail-products/pet-waste-products-retail/

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    Mamavalveeta03
    3 Oct 2019
    12:06pm

    Your environment thanks you, Kim! Hmm…everyday life-changing item? A haircut that allows me to air-dry my hair and not have to blow dry.

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    RebeccaToo
    3 Oct 2019
    9:51am

    A lightweight Miele vacuum. I can vacuum the wood floors, rugs, and stairs then use the other attachments to “dust” and get the dog hair off the couch…it is so much faster than a full sized vacuum and so much less hassle. I almost don’t loathe vacuuming now…

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      Clatie
      3 Oct 2019
      10:18am

      We have a Miele, too. Fantastic vacuum.

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        Kim France
        3 Oct 2019
        10:51am

        I got the Miele that’s supposedly especially for dog hair, and it’s great.

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      Eloise
      3 Oct 2019
      10:31am

      Have been debating a Dyson. Will check out Miele. I’m definately “of a certain age” as a lightweight vacuum is at the very top of my list.

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        Mary
        3 Oct 2019
        10:40am

        I didn’t like the Dyson all that much. Loud, heavy and it’s far too powerful for delicate rugs!

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        Kimberly
        3 Oct 2019
        10:38am

        Love my Dyson animal, but it is HEAVY as all get out

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          EW
          3 Oct 2019
          1:49pm

          yeah it is. We call ours “mike Dyson, heavyweight champion of vacuums”
          My cats call it “Vacooom, the Terror”

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        RebeccaToo
        3 Oct 2019
        11:21am

        It is very light and has a built-in handle and retractable cord. I find it so much easier to move around the house, stairs, under beds and tables, small rooms and closets, etc. And I purchased a reconditioned unit for much less than retail. I was recovering from a shoulder injury when I bought it…no regrets.

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        Clatie
        3 Oct 2019
        1:53pm

        We had a Dyson and when it finally died, we went with the Miele and we like it SO MUCH BETTER.

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      Jax
      3 Oct 2019
      11:11am

      I’m very intrigued. What’s the model? Is it still a canister vacuum?
      I’ve also been debating getting one of those cordless chargeable stick Dysons, but prefer the Miele brand.

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        RebeccaToo
        3 Oct 2019
        11:28am

        Mine is the Compact C2 Quartz. Miele has a confusing number of models but the variations are not actually that great. Despite being compact, mine has the same sized motor as the more expensive models and HEPA filtration. I have wood floors. If I had a full house of carpet I might have pondered the non-compact models. The replacement filters and bags are not as cheap as the classic upright bags but they do a noticeably good job of filtering the exhaust.

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          Jax
          4 Oct 2019
          11:12am

          Thanks! I have hardwood floors too, so that would work! And def need HEPA filtration.

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        Jenny
        4 Oct 2019
        11:24am

        It’s a canister 🙁

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        Jen
        4 Oct 2019
        6:47pm

        I have the cordless Dyson and I ABSOLUTELY LOVE IT. Definitely my favorite drudgery purchase. I vacuum a million times more than if I had to plug the dang thing in.

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    Lorna
    3 Oct 2019
    9:58am

    I got an nespresso citiz years ago when trying to get pregnant, so I could do decalf and my (now ex) wife could drink regular coffee. I loved it from the beginning, and now trying to get a 9 year old out the door having a fast and drinkable coffee at home is amazing. That little red machine is my most rewarding committed relationship.

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    Kimbersam
    3 Oct 2019
    8:41am

    OMG! I don’t have a pocket in any of my pants or jackets that aren’t stuffed with some sort of poop bag. And I only have one (city) dog. I can’t imagine poop supporting multiple pups. These bags look awesome!

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      Eloise
      3 Oct 2019
      10:16am

      I’ve got three dogs (we had four at one point – I miss my girl every day) and there are poop bags in every one of my pockets and bags. Always.

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        Leah
        3 Oct 2019
        11:53am

        1) S’Well water bottle. I drink ice cold water throughout the day and even when I wake up at night. I’ve tried bottles from other manufacturers but with S’Well, water stays colder for longer. I recently bought the coordinating sports cap which eliminates the need to unscrew the lid – perfection!
        2) Barry’s tea, gold blend (Irish). If you like full-bodied tea, this is the ticket. Other teas taste like panther piss imo.

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          Mamavalveeta03
          3 Oct 2019
          12:19pm

          Leah, I love my S’well water bottle that my daughters gifted me. My husband calls me the most well-hydrated human being on the planet! And my youngest became a fan of Barry’s tea in Ireland last semester. I’ve got 2 HUGE boxes of the stuff she forgot to take back to school with her – anyone need some? 😉

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            Leah
            3 Oct 2019
            5:46pm

            Mamavelveeta03,
            I’ve never been to Ireland but a friend introduced me to Barry’s tea over 20 yrs ago and now I can’t drink anything else 😋

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              Synnøva O'Gorman
              4 Oct 2019
              5:50am

              I order my Barry’s Tea directly from the website (I’m Irish but live abroad) and it comes in this adorable branded packing with tiny teapots all over it, and a little card inside saying “greetings from cork”. It brightens up my day, I have to admit.

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          Clatie
          4 Oct 2019
          10:47am

          Tell me more about this tea – how is it different from other tea? (I’m a tea lover and am thoroughly intrigued.)

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            Viajera
            4 Oct 2019
            3:10pm

            While I adore tea, I can’t talk about flavor bc I’m usually congested, plus I put milk in mine. However, some of the Barry’s are available at some Cost Pluses if you want to try, at least in LA. I think they usually have at least the red box kind there. (For the other ones I had to go to the Irish import store on Vine.) I will ask my friend which one she ended up liking the best.

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          Jax
          4 Oct 2019
          11:40am

          A fan of many “builder’s teas” teas from the British isles, including PG Tips and Tetley’s. Currently, drinking lots of Mark’s and Spencer’s Very Strong Fair Trade.

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    Francine Harris
    3 Oct 2019
    9:04am

    Is a lovely, yet bold Syrah considered a household item? No?

    Mr. Clean magic erasers and OxyClean. I have three boys that really like to climb the walls (think American Ninja) and I really like coffee and chocolate ice cream.

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      rebeccatoo
      3 Oct 2019
      11:37am

      I love those Magic Erasers. Faucets and fingerprints. A quick swipe and instant gratification. Like I actually cleaned something…
      My other quick cleaning hack is that I keep in my bathroom a spray bottle (cute blue one from Amazon) filled with very diluted bleach water. I spritz the tub/shower with it regularly. It keeps mildew from growing and that is 90% of the way to a clean tub. Which is close enough for me!

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        Mimi
        3 Oct 2019
        7:58pm

        I love OxyClean and Magic Erasers for my walls too. Another favorite cleaning tip I learned from a costume designer friend: use handiwipes to remove white deodorant marks and other stains on your clothes. If you’ll pardon the name drop, many moons ago the late, great, Bill Blass told me “You aren’t doing your clothes any favors by having them dry cleaned frequently. All you’re doing is putting chemicals into the material.” Every time I successfully rub out a stain with a handiwipe I figure I’m skipping a trip to the cleaner.

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    Betsy Palmer
    3 Oct 2019
    9:07am

    This isn’t an item but a practice. About a year ago I started religiously ironing my pillowcases. A very small thing but it makes me feel like a million bucks and it costs nothing.

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    Amy
    9 Oct 2019
    3:45pm

    I second what Mae said, I can’t think of an item that was life changing – but having a cleaning lady every two weeks definitely is. I keep my house more neat because I know she’s coming (and I am NOT a neat person). Coming home the Friday she’s there is amazing… my house is magically transformed that day into one that smells nice and doesn’t have weird gunk in the sink.

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    janine
    7 Oct 2019
    1:03pm

    As my husband said when I once bought cheaper/inferior poop bags, “Don’t skimp on the poop bags, they are the only thing between our hands and poop!” He was right about that one.

    Also, I love my Roomba so much. They are not cheap, but they are a lifesaver/timesaver and last quite a while.

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    Frances
    3 Oct 2019
    12:25pm

    Gloves for washing dishes. I started using them when I was pumping with my first child and so had to wash lots of little parts in hot water multiple times a day. My hands were so dried out they were cracking and bleeding! I started wearing plastic gloves to wash dishes then and I’ve never stopped. I don’t know why everyone doesn’t use them!

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      Viajera
      3 Oct 2019
      2:03pm

      For me, it is the way my hands smell after wearing the gloves … if whatever I am cleaning with smells less bad, then no gloves. But for bleach, I’ll wear them. … I am pretty out of the loop on gloves though, and it’s possible there are fabric lined ones out there which don’t leave your hands smelling rubbery. But see, I like the strength of those bluette gloves.

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        HickfromStyx
        4 Oct 2019
        10:46am

        Yes, there are neoprene gloves for dishwashing. They cost more, but are worth it if you have a latex allergy. Plus they last longer.

        Tip #2: Sprinkle a bit of baby powder (the cornstarch kind) inside from time to time. Shake out and you’re good to go.

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    Heather
    3 Oct 2019
    12:30pm

    First, this: https://www.thepstyle.com
    Everyone should have one.
    A second to Mr Clean Magic Erasers.

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      Viajera
      4 Oct 2019
      3:14pm

      Okay, not to get too far into the weeds … but is that pee thing for home use? Or for camping in snow? I am just confused bc -while the utility is clear – how would I go about transporting the item? But don’t worry I can probably google that …

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    Cedar
    3 Oct 2019
    1:50pm

    My sodastream. I love bubbly water. I can easily go through a liter a day, and since I’m a car-less city person who carries their groceries home in a backpack that’s totally not an option. Now I save the environment all the plastic, save my back the pain, and drink my sparkling water for essentially free. That thing paid for itself in two months.

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      Clatie
      3 Oct 2019
      1:58pm

      YES!! We guzzle bubbly water. I love that there’s such little waste – you even turn in the tanks and get a refilled one. I wish everyone who liked Lacroix, etc. would get one. We could save so much aluminum and plastic.

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      Stephanie
      3 Oct 2019
      2:03pm

      Thank you for solving my annual what-to-get-my-husband-for-xmas dilemma!

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    Stephanie
    3 Oct 2019
    2:01pm

    On the dog front, I love these Goldpaw fleeces for chilly weather. They seem from my p.o.v. to keep the little guy warm enough and they’re easy-peasy to wash. Since my dog falls right between a size 10 and a size 12, for an extra $1 the company made me two size 11s — a regular for temps in the 40s and a double fleece for below that. Love these. https://goldpawseries.com/

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    Karin
    3 Oct 2019
    7:15pm

    2 things have been life-changing in battle against dog hair/dog smell: 1) a home air filter that Kim recommended years ago and 2) a Deebot robotic vacuum cleaner. Just set that little guy off and our floors are MUCH cleaner without me having to do anything except move a few items out of his way….works great and cost $150 b/c there’s no WAY I’m paying $700 or whatever the heck it is for a Roomba.

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    Jennie
    3 Oct 2019
    11:33pm

    Vinegar and water to clean EVERYTHING. Well, most everything. Don’t use it on granite.

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    Mouse
    4 Oct 2019
    5:00am

    Thermapen! Bench scraper! OXO coffee grinder with metal canister so there’s no static! Can you tell I am food-obsessed?

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    c.w.
    4 Oct 2019
    7:10am

    Something I forgot to mention and it is so worthy a mention…if you have a battery operated hand drill there are cleaning brushes made to attach. These brush attachments are amazing when your bathtub, kitchen sink etc. need elbow grease and you’d rather not. I’m not at home so I can’t give a shout out to a particular brand, but a quick google search will give you numerous options.

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    Mae
    4 Oct 2019
    2:20pm

    Not an item, but a service: A cleaning lady every two weeks. Saved my marriage.

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Kim France

I was born in Houston, Texas in 1964 and have lived in New York City since 1988. I had a long career in magazines, working at Sassy, Elle, New York, and Spin, and in 2000, I founded Lucky magazine, which I edited for ten years.

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