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What Readers Are Buying: Lightweight Suitcases, Rugs, and Foaming Cleansers

Photo-Illustration: The Strategist; Photos: Retailers

Welcome to “Your Shopping Cart,” wherein we break out the top ten products that you, devoted Strategist UK readers, 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 saw two new entries in the Strategist top ten: a marble-patterned rug from Amazon (that looks like it’s from La Redoute) and a lightweight suitcase that we recently named best in class. Our readers also bought a foaming cleanser, a dentist-recommended electric toothbrush, and plenty of Strategist-approved moisturisers.

Photo: retailer

Last month, this vitamin-C serum made its debut on our most-bought list, and in the space of a month, it has gone from ninth place to the top spot. This is no mean feat given the prevalence of a certain gel moisturiser in our monthly roundup. Strategist writer Rachael Griffiths declared this the best overall serum after sleuthing through skin-care studies and speaking to experts about what to look out for. If you want to get into vitamin-C serums, Griffiths noted that the airtight pump on this bottle is essential as it helps stop the serum from oxidising, a process which causes vitamin C to become unusable. Perhaps most interesting, beauty journalist Rhea Cartwright said this product is known as an “insider secret” dupe for the cult (and five times more expensive) SkinCeuticals serum.

Photo: Amazon

This inexpensive and frankly unremarkable plant mister by Flairosol has now been in our most bought for 25 months and has kept its second-place position from April. Strategist writer Chris Mandle recently wrote an ode to the ever-popular mister and has begrudgingly accepted that the spray it releases is something of a revelation. “Rather than a thick cloud of droplets that sit on the leaves, the water is released in a gentle gasp that is as fine as the steam from a shower,” he writes. “It means that spraying a plant doesn’t coat it so much as it fills the surrounding area with a light cloud of water droplets. This is essential for misting, which is ultimately about increasing the humidity around the plant, not simply making it wet.” He says it’s better than the more design-y misters he has accumulated over the years, too.

When you think of rugs, your mind may immediately go to or La Redoute — but we have unearthed some surprisingly tasteful rugs from Amazon, too. Impressively, this marbled gray rug has debuted in our top ten at No. 3. The pared-back colour makes it versatile enough to work in a living room, under a dining table, or perhaps even in a study, while the swirliness is far more interesting than the influx of geometric and colour-blocked rugs saturating the market. If you’re looking for more inspiration, we have a comprehensive roundup of the best rugs right now.

Down one place from last month, Neutrogena’s gel-like moisturiser is our fourth-best-selling item in May. With the sun (occasionally) coming back out this month, it’s no surprise to see lighter moisturisers returning to our most bought after an influx of creamier options (though those are still selling in droves; see below). This Neutrogena gel moisturiser is featured in our story on the best moisturisers for oily skin thanks in part to its oil- and alcohol-free formula. However, it’s also something of an all-rounder — it has been recommended to us for dry skin types, the rosacea prone, and even pregnant women.

This is the 13th month overall that Olaplex’s hair perfector has made it into our most bought, and it’s up two places from April. It comes recommended by stylists, and author Shon Faye told us it’s a “lifesaver” as she grows her hair out from her shorter, pandemic-era bleached-blonde look: “I have come to enjoy the ritual of slicking it over my hair and leaving it for so many hours that my hair and the product dries out as it repairs the bonds in the structure of my hair. Then I relish the satisfaction of getting to wash it out and letting it air-dry into a boosted shine.”


After missing our most bought last month, Cetaphil’s thick moisturiser returns to the top ten at No. 6. This is the fourth overall month we’ve seen readers buying this product, though it has never risen any higher than sixth place. That said, it’s popular with dermatologists and skin-care experts alike: It was featured in both our guides to the best lotions for dry skin and the best moisturisers. Experts said it is particularly good for sensitive skin as it contains ceramides and essential fatty acids. Cosmetic dermatologist Michele Green said these “create a barrier that protects skin from environmental stressors while replenishing lost moisture.” It’s fragrance free, and because it contains lactic acid, it will gently exfoliate without irritating skin.

Our second new entry this month is a lightweight suitcase — clearly Strategist readers have their eyes on summer holidays (or perhaps they planned on escaping somewhere warm for the Jubilee weekend). We featured this in our look at the very best suitcases, naming it the best lightweight overall. Reviewers noted how easy it was to manoeuvre through the busiest airports even when it’s packed to the brim, and it’s compatible with over 15 airlines, including British Airways, Norwegian Airlines, and Aer Lingus. It comes with a five-year warranty, just in case.

This best-in-class electric toothbrush is spending its fourth month on our most-bought list. We named it the best overall in our exhaustive look at the best toothbrushes after pulling in recommendations from dental experts and comparing notes on everything from battery life to Bluetooth compatibility. This toothbrush is notable for its lithium-ion battery, usually found in more expensive models, which allows it to go more than two weeks without a charge.

CeraVe Moisturising Cream

Last month, CeraVe’s moisturising cream was our best-selling product, but this month it has fallen to ninth place. Perhaps all the people who bought it last month are still working through their jar: Contributor Daniela Morosini told us it’s a long-lasting cream that works just as hard as her more expensive moisturisers. Experts said this is suitable for dry to very dry (and even cracked) skin thanks to its high lipid content. In fact, one dermatologist told us that no matter the reason for your dry skin — whether it’s dry in winter, dry year-round, or dry because of aging — this is a universally good choice.

CeraVe’s foaming cleanser returns to our most bought for the first time in 2022 (despite being a reader favorite 15 times over the past two years). Dr. Ifeoma Ejikeme, founder and director of the Adonia Medical Clinic, recommends it especially for pregnant women. As a mum of three (her youngest is just 4 months old), she found her skin was quite dry during pregnancy, so she gravitated toward products that could offer hydration while battling the hormonal oiliness. “The ceramides in this are really hydrating and moisturising, which I found I needed far more than usual during pregnancy, and the niacinamide is a wonderful antioxidant,” she says.

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 Readers Are Buying: Suitcases, Rugs, and Cleansers