I saw a few people post their favorite purchases of 2019 and it got me thinking. I’m the type of person who is open to trying out a lot of hyped-up products and, when I find something I love, I love to share it with others. So, I thought back and created my own list of favorite purchases of 2019.
This is the start of what I hope becomes a tradition for me — I already started a draft post for favorite purchases of 2020, which I will edit over the course of the year.
So, without further ado, below are my favorite purchases of 2019, starting with books (of course!), but also including beauty, fashion and home products.
The Dutch House by Ann Patchett
It’s no secret that The Dutch House was my favorite fiction book of 2019. I’ve been talking it up on Instagram and the blog as much as possible. It’s also one of Jenna Bush Hager’s book club selections.
It combines so many things I love: a beautiful book cover (because sometimes I do judge books by their covers), an epic family drama (my favorite genre), beloved author Ann Patchett and none other than Tom Hanks narrating the audiobook.
What more can I say?! Although I listened to the book and HIGHLY recommend you do the same, I am buying a signed copy of The Dutch House straight from Ann Patchett’s bookstore, and that hard copy will probably make my list of favorite purchases of 2020 as well.
Know My Name by Chanel Miller
Know My Name was my favorite non-fiction book of the year, and it holds the status of a major game-changer for me. I think there’s nothing better a book can do than change your way of thinking in some way, and Chanel Miller accomplished that so eloquently in her memoir as the victim in the Stanford sexual assault case.
Miller is philosophical and highly analytical in telling her story. She has clearly gone through the wringer in processing her emotions and being able to argue her points with depth and complexity.
She forces you to think about things you never thought before about sexual assault and to think differently about sexual assault, including the criminal justice system and the news media.
Miller reads the audio book and does a fantastic job, but I recommend any format of this must-read Know My Name.
For more, read my review of Know My Name.
AirPods are the product I never knew I needed in my life. I only bought them because I had a “use it or lose it” credit at the AT&T store and they ended up being another game changer for me and one of my favorite purchases of 2019.
AirPods make listening to audiobooks sooo much easier and without the burden of getting tangled in wires or dragging an iPhone around. One of my favorite ways to use them is when I am cleaning and doing errands around the house. I can bounce all around without carrying my iPhone or not being able to hear as I move around.
I use them so much more than regular earphones and it’s a much more pleasant user experience. I know my AirPods will help me read so many more audiobooks this year.
Buying tip: If these AirPods are currently on any sort of sale, you are almost assuredly getting a good deal.
Allbirds were yet another game-changer for me. I asked for them for Christmas and, when I received them in the wrong color, I still ended up keeping them simply because I refused to take them off. They are THAT comfortable.
I have the ballet flats in charcoal and adore them … as in “favorite shoes ever” adore them. The wool inside feels like the coziest sock and the knit and elastic uppers are flexible, light and completely pain-free. The soles are also pretty thick, offering so much support for walking. I have and do like Rothy’s, but Allbirds are my dream come true.
For more information, read my full review of Allbirds Women’s Tree Breezers.
Blue Light Blockers
In 2019, I developed dry eyes. Between dry office air, looking at a computer screen all day and looking at a computer screen for blogging or Kindle for reading at night, my eyes suffered. Some days, my eyes teared up so much it looked like I had been crying all day and, some nights, I had to just lay on the couch with my eyes closed.
One strategy I tried to improve the condition was blue light everything. I wear blue light glasses for using my Kindle and iPad, and I added blue light screens to my phone and desktop. It’s not a complete problem solver, but it definitely helped me, and I am grateful for that.
Kyocera Ceramic Knives Set
I have been eyeing up my in-laws ceramic knives for years. They cut the hardest objects sooo easily and smoothly. I finally caved and purchased this Kyocera ceramic knife set. They make meal prep that much easier. Sometimes, it’s the little things!
My only word of caution is to not get too brave with ceramic knives. They can crack and chip if you push them too hard.
Dior Nail Glow Nail Polish
Dior Nail Glow nail polish is one of my favorite things! It’s not cheap but it’s another game-changer and one of my favorite purchases of 2019. I have been struggling for years to find a way to make my nails look decent without constantly getting expensive and time-consuming manicures. No matter what I tried, within less than three days, my nails would start chipping and look messy.
Enter Dior Nail Glow. It’s a clear polish with a slightly pink tone, which simply makes your nails look glossy and healthy. I use 2-3 coats and top it off with a top coat. It doesn’t last as long as a traditional manicure, but you can easily get away with a week in this nail polish. Even if it chips, it’s not really noticeable since it’s so light.
And the pink tone looks more healthy and refined than unpolished nails. I cut back to one traditional manicure a month after finding Dior Nail Glow nail polish, so it was an investment that was worth it for me.
Drunk Elephant Protini Polypeptide Cream
I have heard the Drunk Elephant Protini Polypeptide Cream referred to as “Benjamin Button cream” because it ages you in reverse, and I totally agree. I used it on my very hot honeymoon in July in Italy and couldn’t have been happier to see my skin smooth, plump, clear and glowing even after full days in the heat with makeup on.
It’s the number one best-selling moisturizer at Sephora. It’s also vegan, cruelty-free, clean and can be used on dry, oily or combination skin types. The description states: “Think of Protini like adding protein to your smoothie. Abundant with proteins and nutrients, it replenishes and restores skin to a strong, healthy state.”
Drunk Elephant Protini Polypeptide Cream is also not cheap, but if you are into good skincare, it’s worth it.
The Laundress Laundry Products
The Laundress is one of my favorite things! It’s a brand that sells higher-end laundry detergent and related products. I invested in their products because I wanted to use “cleaner” (non-toxic) detergent and because they had specialty products that allowed you to wash dry clean only clothing at home.
So, again, this upfront investment was able to save me money on the back end because I wasn’t running to the dry cleaner anymore, and because my clothes last longer with this gentle detergent. I have so many of their products at this point, but my favorite is the Delicate Wash, which I use with my delicates and dry clean items in mesh bags from Amazon.
Buying Tip: The Laundress website generally offers generous seasonal discount codes (check here) as well as when you sign up for emails. I find the best deals here, especially when I buy these specific kits.
Laneige Lip Mask
Laneige Lip Mask saved my lips in December 2019. I was experiencing painful cracked lips that would not go away, and I was desperate. I had heard amazing things about Laneige Lip Mask, so I decided it was worth a shot.
Within about ten days, my problem was solved. Laneige Lip Mask is the bestselling lip treatment at Sephora, and it won a “Best of Allure” award in 2019.
It’s not just a lip mask that you wear at night — you can also wear it like any other lip balm during the day. It is extremely thick, long-lasting and hydrating, and as a bonus, it has a pretty pale pink sheen, which makes it useful as a lip gloss as well. I use my Laneige Lip Mask all the time now, and I intend to always keep one on my bathroom sink.
Revlon One-Step Hair Dryer & Volumizer Hot Air Brush
The Revlon One-Step Hair Dryer & Volumizer Hot Air Brush is a #1 bestseller on Amazon and also one of my favorite things! seemed to be the “it” product this year, and I definitely fell for it as well. I got it on a great deal on Amazon Prime Day, just to see what the fuss was about. Wow. This is the ultimate hair dryer “for dummies” and it comes at such a great price point.
If you simply cannot coordinate the use of a brush and a hairdryer at the same time, the Revlon One-Step Hair Dryer & Volumizer Hot Air Brush is for you. The built-in brush also creates so much volume and shine. I felt like I had been to the salon the first time I used it.
To avoid over-heating my hair with this product, I start by using a heat protectant. Then, I air dry my hair with a towel and dry it for a few minutes with my T3 hairdryer, before switching to the Revlon One-Step Hair Dryer & Volumizer Hot Air Brush. Then I alternate between the hot and cool settings.
I find the Revlon One-Step Hair Dryer & Volumizer Hot Air Brush to also be so efficient for travel. After I bought mine, countless people told me they bought it too and loved it. And, sometimes, when I compliment someone’s hair, they respond, “the Revlon Hair Dryer!” It’s an amazing product.
Sunday Riley CEO Serum
2019 was the year I really started learning about skincare, especially for someone in their late 30s. I learned of the proven benefits of products containing vitamins and dug into trying several, including vitamin C serums.
My favorite vitamin C serum, by far, has been the Sunday Riley CEO Serum (I’ve tried about 4-5 at this point). After a week or two, my skin was literally glowing. It has never been brighter or more radiant, to the point it sometimes surprises me.
The description states that it is a “highly-potent, fast-absorbing serum infused with 15 percent THD ascorbate (vitamin C) to fight the look of dullness, dark spots, and discolorations, while instantly increasing brightness, radiance, and luminosity.” It calls THD ascorbate the “gold standard” of vitamin C.
Those were my favorite purchases of 2019! Did you see any favorites in there? Are you going to try any yourself?