Stuff I buy on repeat on Amazon

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I was telling my friend Michelle the other day about the sheepskin insoles I put in whatever shoes I can fit them in—and most recently my fleece-lined Vans, because for some reason whoever designed those shoes decided not to line the soles, which makes for less than ideally cozy conditions. But with these insoles, my sneakers are as warm as my warmest snow boots. Michelle was like, Why don’t you post about that? And so I have.

I am so pleased that Nespresso doesn’t have a monopoly on pods for their machines (didn’t they at one time?); these Lavazza pods produce an excellently strong and notably delicious espresso.

I clean my face and remove makeup with Bioderma (this is their sensitive skin formulation) and what I love most about it is that it’s hydrating, as many cleansers can be on the drying side.

I can’t get enough of the super-fresh scent of Sea Salt Soap—it wakes me up in my morning shower, and comes in  nifty candle and hand cream iterations too.

Mascaras come and mascaras go in my life, but I always have a tube of  It’s So Big around, because it volumizes like nobody’s business, with nary a clump.

Now that I no longer live near the greatest apothecary in New York and maybe anywhere—I speak of C.O. Bigelow, of course—I order their lavender essential oil from Amazon. It truly has the best, richest,most relaxing scent, and helps knock me out when I’m having trouble sleeping. Also, when one of the dogs is in super cracked-out hyper mode, I dab a little on his wee forehead (where he can’t lick it off) and he chills right out.

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56 Thoughts on Stuff I buy on repeat on Amazon
    Maggie
    1 Feb 2019
    9:54am

    I buy Olay Regenerist on Amazon because it’s significantly cheaper than it is at my drugstore.

    I must have crazy skin, because all of that French Pharmacy stuff that people swear by, including Bioderma, makes me break out. I’ve tried so many brands with no luck. It makes me sad, because I love the packaging, smell, and consistency of so many of the products.

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    Dusa
    1 Feb 2019
    11:41am

    I use those insoles in my old, cheap, comfy Target moccasin slippers and dang, they do the trick! I’ll need to invest in a good pair of slippers for next winter, but for now adding the insoles eeked me out another season!

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      Viajera
      1 Feb 2019
      12:51pm

      If you’re already planning to cough up for new slippers, you might want to take a look at those rubber nurse clogs. I have had great wear out of mine and they’re very warm, too. Nurses know about feet. (Could be that more of them wear real clogs though. I’m not sure.)

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    Mae
    1 Feb 2019
    1:45pm

    Amazon is Walmart without the “lower class” stigma, but with guilt about the waste involved in delivery. It’s a brilliant business model. Tempting beyond anything else. The world at your fingertips no matter where you live.

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      shanti
      2 Feb 2019
      9:50pm

      Spare me the lecture on social commentary. I won’t be shamed about my “first world” habits. The stresses that I encounter in my life as a 21st century woman of having to do/be it all (and look good in the process!) are more than our forefathers ever would have anticipated. I will continue to buy what I need, and avail myself of Amazon if the goods are not available or inconvenient to procure at brick and mortar stores.

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        Kay
        4 Feb 2019
        8:49am

        What do forefathers have to do with it? They have known terrible labor practices. That’s what the original comment is about. The inability of people to have breaks, etc. People are choosing convenience and cheap prices that are delivered because they don’t pay sufficient wages and have poor labor practices. Usually when we pay less for stuff, it’s because another person is experiencing low pay and poor working conditions.

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    Lynn in Tucson
    31 Jan 2019
    9:36am

    Sheepskin insoles? You have rocked my world!

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    TRD
    31 Jan 2019
    9:46am

    Just saw an ad for compostable nespresso-compatible pods from a company called Halo Coffee. Haven’t received my order yet, so can’t comment on quality. But I’d be thrilled if they worked well so I wouldn’t need to recycle the brand-name pods.

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    Karen
    1 Feb 2019
    11:44am

    I’m wondering if you buy the same size fleece insert as your shoe or if you size down at all. Thanks!

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      Kim France
      1 Feb 2019
      8:48pm

      In my experience, they’ve been true to size.

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    Caroline
    31 Jan 2019
    8:35am

    Yes, they did have a monopoly on pods so this is good to know!
    Also, I’m totally going to order those insoles because I have a very cute pair of fleece lined supergas that have the same situation:-)

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    AS
    31 Jan 2019
    4:49pm

    How do you use the lavender oil to help you sleep, considering it is so concentrated? I use a lavender spray on my pillow, but would love to find out how you use the oil

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      y.k.
      1 Feb 2019
      8:22am

      i have tried on myself and my kids (once in a great while) – 1 drop rubbed on forehead (third eye lol ) before lights out – and it’s been effective – but now that i’m 54 – not as dependable.

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    Gablesgirl
    31 Jan 2019
    7:36pm

    Love the Sea Salt products. As someone who loves the ocean I find it a more calming and soothing scent than lavender. Thanks for reminding me to order more.

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    Colleen
    31 Jan 2019
    10:41am

    Boo to coffee pods- I hate this wasteful trend! Cuban coffee in stovetop percolator FOR LIFE!

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      Mamavalveeta03
      1 Feb 2019
      12:47am

      I love my French Press, and it makes me feel so….French!

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      Joyce
      31 Jan 2019
      11:09am

      These pods, unlike k cups are completely recyclable. (I know, still not the best choice.) But you send them back for free, they compost the grounds and recycle the aluminum.

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    Mimi
    31 Jan 2019
    10:43am

    My left foot is smaller than my right. It usually isn’t a problem, but if I don’t wear a thicker sock on my left foot when wearing a particular pair of boots, I wind up with blisters on my left heel. I wonder if the sheepskin insole would make the too roomy left boot fit better. Has anyone used the insoles to remedy the fit of a shoe that’s slightly too large?

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      Viajera
      31 Jan 2019
      12:07pm

      So, total non-expert here, but … I wonder if there would be a way to work on the extra room in the *front* of the left shoe … bc it seems like a thicker sock on one side is going to change the length of your legs, mind you to a tiny degree. What about stuffing some kind of wadding in the front of your L shoe? Something very soft but which would keep your foot from sliding around (which may be what causes the blisters?)

      Or I would ask a shoe repair person. This must happen all the time. My feet are different sizes too but my smaller foot hasn’t been impacted (yet). Anyhow if you figure it out, please do share!

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      Jenny
      1 Feb 2019
      8:44am

      I’m intrigued by this idea, never tried it. My left foot is bigger than my right. I’m tempted to try insoles for the reason you mention. Given that we are opposites, we should totally hook up on an insole purchase and give the “extra” insole to the other. 🙂

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      c.w.
      4 Feb 2019
      9:43am

      A friend of mine with the same size problem solved it by going to a reputable fitter of ski boots. They made impressions of her feet then insoles for her that she can switch to different shoes (or, I presume, ski boots!) that seem to work for her. No doubt there are other insole fitters out there––I’m guessing you don’t have to go to someone who specializes in ski boots. (also I should mention it wasn’t an inexpensive process)

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    Joyce
    31 Jan 2019
    11:14am

    I’ve tried many of the different nespresso style pods. Just finished trying the Lavazza, but they fall right through my machine, so I have to kind of hold it in there with one hand and try to close with the other. It takes me 2-3 tries to get the capsule right. I was excited, because they sell them at my grocery store, but they’re a big fail for me on ease of use.

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      Mkw
      1 Feb 2019
      10:12am

      Trader Joe’s has pods that work well in my nespresso.

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    Alexa
    31 Jan 2019
    9:31am

    I recently discovered fleece insoles as well. Now *all* my winter footwear is fleece-lined. Once again, it’s the little things in life : )

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    Gabrielle
    31 Jan 2019
    11:28am

    Be careful with essential oils and pets. Some are toxic to them. 😢

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      Kim France
      31 Jan 2019
      11:40am

      According to my research, lavender oil is fine for dogs as long as they don’t consume it. Not so good for cats, on the other hand.

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    Joannawnyc
    31 Jan 2019
    11:43am

    I buy AuraCacia products–Rosehip oil and aromatherapy oils–on repeat.

    Those sheepskin insoles seem like an EXCELLENT idea!

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    Viajera
    31 Jan 2019
    2:52pm

    Kim, and smart people Kim friends – does anyone know where one might look if one needs suits, but which are unlined/unpadded shouldered/lightly padded at most, and maybe even made out of knitwear?

    Unfortunately I can’t go super high end, either. (In fact, weirdly, I may be coming around to liking synthetic fabrics just bc you don’t have to worry about them as much.)

    However, I need classic pieces, maybe a pinstripe at most. Ideally, they would look nice. ; ) (duh)

    My last foray into jacket shopping went very, very badly. Blazers look so nice on other people. Most of them don’t work for me.

    I don’t think I could carry off a St. John or a Chanel-esque thing either … but at least I wouldn’t look like an entire house. In theory. It’s a problem!

    In fact, I would go so far as to say that the women’s market seems to be moving away from suits? There didn’t seem to be much. But I get tired of shopping pretty fast, too.

    Anyhow, all suggestions welcome!

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      Jenny (the other one)
      1 Feb 2019
      9:22am

      Out of the box suggestion: look at the ponte & knit blazers at FairIndigo. They may not be too casual, but I bet they would look lovely over a dress. I don’t know that Fair Indigo has matching pants or skirts, though, so a suit might not be possible. I see more professional women in D.C. wearing suit separates (blazer + dress, or blazer + pants or skirt in a different color), rather than full on suits, and I can’t imagine D.C. standards are lower than elsewhere. Suits seem reserved for lawyers who have to be in court that day. You could also check out Lands End and Talbots. They have lots of washable professional separates. With some tailoring, they might look great. Eileen Fisher is a possibility, if you like drapey and feel spendy. Or a good resale shop. Hey Kim — there’s a post idea! Washable professional separates. Way outside your normal remit, but I think you are up to the challenge.

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        EW
        1 Feb 2019
        1:55pm

        Misook or less pricey Ming Wang. the solid colors are nice. Often on sale at NM; can find deals on Ebay also

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          Viajera
          2 Feb 2019
          2:47pm

          Thanks!

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        Viajera
        1 Feb 2019
        1:00pm

        Thanks! Yes, I looked at Talbots. I liked the jackets but they were too heavy in the shoulders for me. Too bad, I liked them otherwise. I think I already tried LE but I’ll double back. I agree, I think suits for whatever reason are getting less attention. Unfortunately they are also the kind of thing for which last minute shopping is particularly bad. I am a big fan of separates too. My current parameters are incompatible with Theory (booooooo!) I will maybe check Tahari. And also these FairIndigo ppl, I’ve never heard of them, thank you! EF looks intriguing but they may be even tooooo unstructured. We’ll see. Again, thanks! I am trying now to put in extra spaces since my paragraphing doesn’t work … it would be nice to seem lesssss crazy! Ha.

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        Viajera
        1 Feb 2019
        1:01pm

        Oh, also, I am v intrigued by this washable professional separates idea. Totally unheard of! Very exciting idea though. Hmm.

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          Viajera
          1 Feb 2019
          1:03pm

          Extra spaces didn’t work either! Cue the Patsy Cline.

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            Joannawnyc
            4 Feb 2019
            11:25am

            Universal Standard has some blazers now. I tried them on at the Soho popup and the shoulders seemed good!

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      Mary
      31 Jan 2019
      9:00pm

      I think I’m coming around to polyester too! So nice to throw something on and not worry about wrinkles and thinking it too precious.

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      Heather
      4 Feb 2019
      8:31am

      I have to dress up for work. Most blazers are terrible on me (wide shoulders), and I can’t find dress pants that will fit my butt (I always think of that Frank Zappa song). I do a lot of dresses with cardigans, and keep a slightly cropped, 3/4 sleeve black blazer in my office in case I do need one. Anyway, Boden is great; good sales and most everything is machine washable. You can also find it on Poshmark.

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        Viajera
        4 Feb 2019
        10:46am

        Boden! Forgot Boden entirely … thanks!

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      Kathy
      4 Feb 2019
      2:44pm

      I know this will sound crazy, but check out Target. They have a decent size range (blazers as well as pants and skirts). I’ve actually seen knit blazers there on several occasions. They looked well-made and professional, not like a blazer-shaped sweatshirt.

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    Candy
    31 Jan 2019
    3:30pm

    Double yes to the Bioderma for those with sensitive skin. Removes all my makeup without stripping my skin or otherwise enraging the ultra-touchy rosacea demons.

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      Rebecca
      31 Jan 2019
      3:40pm

      Agree about the Bioderma: I originally got it in a sample kit, and love it! I used it primarily as a make-up remover before I use my Spectrogel to wash my face, but it doesn’t leave my face feeling tight…

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        Liz
        31 Jan 2019
        4:01pm

        Has anyone tried the Burts Bees Micellar water?

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    Lynn
    31 Jan 2019
    3:45pm

    Lavazza coffee beans are also available on Amazon. I get mine on Subscribe and Save, two bags of Super Crema a month. Makes an excellent pot of coffee!

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    c.w.
    31 Jan 2019
    9:17am

    Just ordered a pair of the insoles for me and for my daughter. May have to do the mascara as well. I repeatedly order my Devacurl products from Amazon. What is it that makes me love so much having products delivered to my door? Laziness? Because it feels like a gift? ALSO…sidenote…speaking of something being delivered to my door…my blue alpaca sweater arrived last week and I’ve already worn it an embarrassing number of times. It is one of the best sweaters I own in terms of color, sizing and warmth so THANK YOU, KIM for posting that one!

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    Julie
    31 Jan 2019
    7:23am

    I’m with you on the mascara. It’s the best I’ve ever used. I like to buy the Travel Set with 3 minis. The brush is the same, and I find that a big tube dries out faster. It’s holy grail status, for sure.

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    Mamavalveeta03
    1 Feb 2019
    1:03am

    Does anyone else feel a slight twinge of guilt when ordering from Amazon like me? I say to myself, “Val, you should really shop locally for that widget, doodad, whatever-ya-callit. Besides, Jeff Bezos doesn’t need another swimming pool and he’s a multi-billionaire, so it’s not like his kids will need work study.” But then, I think about how I’m saving $1.27 on my vitamins, and it just makes me so damned happy to get a box anytime I want. So I cave.

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      Jenny (the other one)
      1 Feb 2019
      9:27am

      I try to stay off it, too, but a look at my credit card receipt shows I’m not trying too hard. I don’t like what it’s doing to my teenager, who orders without thinking about it (because he uses my account & credit card or his dad’s). There’s no pause between impulse and purchase– not even the few minutes it takes at the cash register. That feels dangerous and addicting.

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      LL
      1 Feb 2019
      9:48am

      My concern about shopping on Amazon is counterfeit products and employee abuse. If the product is available elsewhere and there’s not a huge price difference, I’ll buy it there.

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        Viajera
        1 Feb 2019
        1:06pm

        Agreed – its bad reputation as an employer is very very offputting. And its effects on cities and small retailers is bad too. Otoh … if someone were home-bound or disabled, it must be a great relief I suppose. Maybe it will change its ways some day.

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      ab
      1 Feb 2019
      3:43am

      I only shop on Amazon because I always have a gift card balance from family insisting on giving them to me all the time. (I haven’t told them not to, but I may, because it makes me feel bad to support Amazon.) There are a ton of articles out there about what it’s really like to work in one of their warehouses (fulfillment centers). It’s bad. I’d also recommend reading https://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2018/02/amazon-warehouses-poor-cities/552020/ and https://www.nbcnews.com/think/opinion/checking-amazon-s-wish-list-stacy-mitchell-podcast-transcript-ncna961391

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        Kim France
        1 Feb 2019
        11:21am

        Yes, I’ve seen horrible stories about the fulfillment centers, and the way they weight down their Amazon Prime Now messengers with packages here in NYC is criminal. Plus, they’ve decimated the book retail business. I guess Amazon guilt is the great equalizer!

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          Kate
          1 Feb 2019
          11:49am

          I am so with all of you on this! I live in a very rural area and sometimes rely on Amazon too much! I constantly have to remind myself that I do not want to contribute to all the fuel involved in flying the newest hair product to me overnight (or in two days- Prime!).

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      y.k.
      1 Feb 2019
      8:18am

      laughing because i’ve gone down that same train of thought!

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      Sara
      1 Feb 2019
      8:51am

      Yes! Same exactly with the Amazon guilt.

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      Dana D
      1 Feb 2019
      8:55am

      Val…I’m on an amazon fast. I am not continuing my prime membership and have discovered that most of the things I buy there I can purchase directly from other, smaller sites. Books I can buy on ebay or at a local shop. I just finally decided that I can’t “buy in” after all of the stories I hear about how workers are treated, et cetera.

      I’ve had this resolve before, mind you. I hope I can stick with it. (BTW read Friday Black if you want a wake up call about Amazon and our western brand of consumerism…)

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    janine
    5 Feb 2019
    12:34pm

    OMG those fleece insoles look divine. And I have a Nespresso pod espresso maker, so I will have to try those Lavazza pods. And I love, love, love that soap.

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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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