Grey bathrobe and towels, pink jar of lip balm

I’m a Shopping Editor, and These Are the Best Purchases I’ve Made Over the Past Year

Including everything from face masks to bathrobes.
By Madeline Diamond
March 18, 2021
Each product we feature has been independently selected and reviewed by our editorial team. If you make a purchase using the links included, we may earn commission.

At Travel + Leisure, we're dedicated to helping you find the absolute best products to meet your needs on the road and at home. The T+L Top Picks seal is awarded to items our editors have determined to be the best buys in their category.

Working as a shopping editor here at Travel + Leisure, I've had the opportunity to test out plenty of travel products and gear in order to give our readers the best recommendations on what to buy for all their upcoming trips. That also means I'm constantly browsing Amazon, Nordstrom, Sephora, Zappos, and other sites for the best new products, from luggage to fashion items. Essentially, I do a lot of virtual window shopping, and with that, plenty of actual shopping myself. From a cozy cotton robe and plush bath towels to a breathable face mask and winter skincare favorites, I've rounded up some of my favorite items I've bought over the past year.

Keep reading for some of the best purchases I've made since the pandemic began that have made my life a little easier, more comfortable, and staying at home more bearable.

Parachute Cotton Robe

Grey cotton bathrobe
Credit: Courtesy of Parachute

I've tried out my fair share of bathrobes over the years, usually settling on long fluffy ones, but this time around I was looking for something a little more stylish and one that I could wear year-round. I love how soft and light this bathrobe from parachute is; I've worn in all winter and it makes me feel cozy without overheating, which leads me to believe it will comfortably take me into spring and summer as well.

To buy: parachutehome.com, $99

Brooklinen Super-plush Bath Towels

Grey plush bath towels
Credit: Courtesy of Brooklinen

I decided to give my bathroom an upgrade with new towels during the pandemic, and these ultra-soft, plush towels from Brooklinen did not disappoint. They're soft and absorbent but still dry quickly, making them a must-have.

To buy: brooklinen.com, $63 for two (originally $69)

Bloch Soft Stretch Reusable Face Masks

Woman wearing black cloth face mask
Credit: Courtesy of Amazon

Like me, you've probably tried out your fair share of face masks over the past year in hopes of finding one that's both functional and comfortable. To this day, the best mask I've found is from Bloch — it's comfortable to wear with its soft fabric and adjustable ear loops and easy to hand wash or throw in the washing machine. Plus, these days, it's ideal for double masking, which I appreciate.

To buy: amazon.com, $17 for three

Books

Three books: Writers and Lovers, The Vanishing Half, and Girl, Woman, Other
Credit: Courtesy of Bookshop

I've always been a big reader, and while reading during my daily commute or while on vacation used to be the norm for me, I've gotten used to cozying up with a good book at home. These titles have been some of my favorites over the past year.

To buy: "Writers and Lovers," bookshop.org, $25; "The Vanishing Half," bookshop.org, $25; "Girl, Woman, Other," bookshop.org, $16

Skincare Favorites

Various skincare products
Credit: Courtesy of Sephora

Like many of us, I've paid closer attention to my skincare routine in the past year. Is it because I'm bored or because I have a bit more time on my hands? Who knows. But this moisturizer from Belif, serum from the Ordinary, and lip mask from Laneige have all been favorites, particularly for combatting dry skin in the winter.

To buy: Belif The True Cream Moisturizing Bomb, sephora.com, $38; Laneige Lip Sleeping Mask, sephora.com, $22; The Ordinary Hyaluronic Acid 2% + B5 Serum, sephora.com, $7

Smartake 13-Piece Drawer Organizers

Clear drawer organizers
Credit: Courtesy of Amazon

I moved during the pandemic, which means I was finally able to trade in my tiny apartment-sized dresser for a full-size one. I was looking for a way to organize my new dresser's shallow top drawer and settled on these clear plastic trays, which come in a set of 13 in various sizes. Now, everything from my skincare products to hair ties to contact lenses have a neat and tidy home, and I never have trouble finding any of my essentials.

To buy: amazon.com, $21

Oxo Brew Pour-over Coffee Maker

White plastic pour over coffee maker
Credit: Courtesy of OXO

I've sung my praises for this pour-over coffee dripper before, and for good reason. It's never been easier to make a single cup of coffee thanks to this handy contraption. All you have to do is measure out your grounds into a filter and place in the dripper on top of your favorite mug, pour hot water into the tank, and wait just a few minutes for your coffee to be ready.

To buy: amazon.com, $16

Madeline Diamond is a Brooklyn-based e-commerce editor at Travel + Leisure, and she's constantly fighting the impulse to overpack for her next trip. You can follow her on Twitter @madgdiamond and Instagram @madelinediamond.

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