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NBC Select editors’ favorite products from August 2023


As shopping experts, we’re always searching for quality items to recommend to NBC Select readers. In August, we wrote about Shark’s new hairstyling tools, Lululemon’s new(-ish) Chargefeel 2 sneaker and our team’s favorite phone cases. We tried dozens of skin care and bedding products, and even debated whether (or not) you should rinse your rice before cooking. 

Below, we’re sharing products that our team loved most during August. Some are items we directly purchased, while others are courtesy gifts from brands. 

Pima Ruffle Nightgown

After years of buying insanely oversized tees to sleep in, I finally decided to try out a nightgown from Lake. And let me just say: this is not your grandmother’s nightgown. Its fabric (100% Pima cotton) is one of the softest materials I’ve ever put on my body. Despite its ruffle designs, I haven’t woken up with weird marks or ruffle indentations on my body — though I did size up to get an extra roomy feel. To keep it in pristine condition and avoid shrinking, I’ve been hanging mine to dry. I also ordered the longer version, which has a similar silhouette, but hovers around my ankles. (I’m 5 foot 3 inches.) I plan to buy many more of these in the future. – Lindsay Schneider, editor 

Just Date Syrup

When I restocked my supply of Just Date Syrup last week, I saw that it was my tenth time buying this sweetener in two years — a true testament to how much I love this stuff. It’s a thinner, less sticky option compared to honey, and it has a richer, deeper flavor. I drizzle it into my smoothies and oatmeal, and use it to cut the acidity in homemade vinegar-based dressings or marinades. One bottle lasts me months. – Zoe Malin, associate updates editor

Summer Fridays Jet Lag Mask

I’m usually weary of moisturizers geared toward overnight use because they usually feel heavy and end up on my pillow, but the Jet Lag mask has quickly earned my trust. It is a thick moisturizer, but seeps right into my skin so I don’t have to sit with globs of cream on my face. My skin can sometimes feel dull or rough and this leaves it feeling so hydrated and smooth. – Rebecca Rodriguez, editorial projects manager

L.L.Bean Women’s Trail Model Rain Jacket

This rain jacket, which covers me from my neck to below my hips, has a large hood to keep my hair from getting wet. It’s loose and lightweight, so it’s never restricting or uncomfortable when I wear it during the hotter summer months. It also dries within minutes, which means I can take it to run errands without needing to carry around a wet jacket for the rest of my day. Mili Godio, updates editor

Ruby Kisses Hydrating Lip Oil

I bought this from my local beauty supply after I ran out of my normal gloss, and as a self-proclaimed lip gloss enthusiast, I’m stunned at how good it is. It’s thick enough to wear for an hour or two at a time (which is a huge feat for a habitual lip-biter like me), but is still light enough to avoid feeling like a goopy mess. It has almost zero stickiness and has quickly become my go-to lip product. My only regret is not buying it in bulk the first time around. – Ashley Morris, associate SEO reporter

Hamilton Beach 41020C Electric Kettle

After years using a stovetop kettle, I finally decided to upgrade to an electric one from Hamilton Beach. It has six temperature options — I click the one I want, hit start, and my water heats up in minutes. The kettle automatically shuts off when it is done, and I like that I can also set it to maintain my water’s warm temps. – Harry Rabinowitz, reporter

Lululemon Base Pace High-Rise Tight 28”

I’m picky when it comes to workout leggings — they need to have the right material, be durable and have a great fit. Luckily, these leggings check all three boxes. The Nulux fabric feels like a second skin. My favorite part (aside from the pockets and lightweight fabric) is the unhemmed bottom, which doesn’t feel tight or restrictive around my ankles. I wear them for running, weight lifting, barre and pilates, and I love how moisture-wicking and quick-drying they are. If you prefer a shorter or longer length, they’re also available in 17 inches, 23 inches, 25 inches and 31 inches — Bianca Alvarez, associate reporter

Casabrews Espresso Machine

I received this product on loan from Casabrews and immediately fell in love with it. I set it up within 15 minutes. (The instruction manual was very useful and detailed.) I was able to make lattes, cappuccinos and even espresso martinis with this machine. My espressos were rich, full of flavor and even appealing to non-coffee drinkers, like my dad. I especially like how all-in-one this machine is with its built-in grinder and milk frother. For someone like me, who’s always been used to generic coffee makers, this espresso machine truly elevated my morning beverages. The set also comes with a milk frothing pitcher, spoon, coffee art pen and filters. – Nishka Dhawan, associate commerce editor

24/7 Second Skin Unlined Bra

I found it: the perfect work-from-home bra. I tend to prefer some support (via underwire) as compared to a wire-free option when wearing loungewear and oversized sweaters — this bra is the perfect in-between. It’s cupped, but unlined so I never feel constricted or uncomfortable. The nylon and spandex fabric has a stretchy, soft feel that mimics a cooling satin or silk finish on my skin. In fact — it actually feels like I’m wearing nothing (in a good way); it’s lightweight and breathable, especially during the hot temps in New York. – Lindsay Schneider, editor 

Swiffer PowerMop

Cleaning my apartment is always a hassle, especially when I have to deal with food and beverage stains on my floors. The PowerMop makes my life a little bit easier, since it lets me sweep away dust, dirt and debris. The mop comes with an already-installed cleaner solution and two duster pads, which I set up in minutes. With it, I can sweep both hardwood floors and tiles with ease, and even nab any pesky dust bunnies under my bed and couch. Using this in conjunction with my cordless vacuum has become a weekly cleaning ritual for me. – Nishka Dhawan, associate commerce editor

Elemis Pro-Collagen Cleansing Balm

After hearing about this balm on social media, I finally decided to hit “buy” and change up my nightly double cleansing routine. I warm a pea-sized scoop of the balm up in my hands until it becomes a liquid and then apply it all over my face — I instantly see makeup and sunscreen come off my face without having to scrub harshly on my skin. Although it does have a subtle scent from all the essential oils, it hasn’t irritated my eczema-prone skin. – Bianca Alvarez, associate reporter

Modkat Flip Litter Box

My cat Zelda is not the neatest. She has a habit of kicking kitty litter around when she uses the loo. This litter box has high walls and a tall entrance to prevent litter from scattering around. The top is foldable, which makes it easier to scoop litter compared to other enclosed litter boxes I’ve had. I also like that it comes with reusable tarp liners — this makes cleaning the litter box (one of my least favorite things) a lot easier. – Harry Rabinowitz, reporter

Beis The Work Tote

After years of carrying a large purse to work, I bought Beis’ Work Tote after seeing it all over social media. It has a great amount of space to fit my laptop, planner and other work essentials, and I love that it has a sturdy base that holds its shape no matter how much I put in it. The built-in padded laptop sleeve keeps my tech secure, and the many interior pockets keep smaller items like keys, stationery and hand sanitizer organized. I also use the exterior pocket to keep my work badge and AirPods easily in reach. This is the best purchase I’ve made in a long time. Mili Godio, updates editor

Sud Scrub Silicone Body Scrubber

In recent years I’ve developed allergies to mold and dust, so I always try to keep my home as clean as possible. I noticed that no matter how often or intensely I cleaned my bathroom I was sneezing anytime I showered. I soon realized that it was from my loofah. Even though I was changing it every couple of months and ringing it out after showering it was still collecting mold and bacteria so I needed an alternative. 

Enter: the Sud Scrub. I initially wasn’t excited about how the silicone bristles would feel against my skin and was, but I was pleasantly surprised. The feeling took some getting used to, but it was never uncomfortable and my Native body wash worked really well with it. (Sud Scrub recommends using a high lather soap). There is silver infused in the scrub that helps make it mold and mildew resistant, according to the brand, which has given me peace of mind. More importantly, I haven’t had any sneeze attacks in the shower since. – Rebecca Rodriguez, editorial projects manager

Philosophy Purity Made Simple Pore Extractor Mask

After getting a facial recently, my esthetician recommended I use this mask once a week to help with blackheads and overall congestion on my nose and chin. It’s a gritty exfoliant that I rub into my skin and let dry for about 10 minutes before rinsing off and drying with my favorite Clean Skin Club Towels. I was worried that this mask — which is made with white clay and salicylic acid — would irritate my sensitive skin, but it hasn’t at all. After three weeks, my skin already looks clearer and has a more even texture. – Zoe Malin, associate updates editor

“Glossy” by Marisa Meltzer

I could not put this book down. It’s an insidery, behind-the-scenes look at how Emily Weiss built Glossier — for better or worse — and does an exceptional job transporting you back to the mid-2010s when it launched. Meltzer scored interviews with ex-employees who add layers of color to the mystique behind Glossier. Her reporting takes you inside early pitch meetings to Weiss’ “superintern” days and beyond. It’s a dishy (albeit well-reported) examination of the “girl boss era” and is a compulsively readable book. (I received an advanced reader edition from the publisher ahead of its publication; it goes on sale September 12.) Lindsay Schneider, editor 

Wildflower Cases AirPod Max Cover 

I unfortunately have what some might call “butterfingers” so I drop just about everything. I knew I’d want to protect my new AirPod Max headphones from my constant mishaps. This cover, which the brand sent me, are scratch-resistant and easy to pop on and off my headphones. I constantly travel with them from northern Virginia to New York, and not only do they protect my AirPods, they are also easy to clean and look brand new after a quick wipe. – Bianca Alvarez, associate reporter

Vtopmart Clear Stackable Storage Bins with Lids

I’ve been on a cleaning kick recently, and after scrubbing and dusting every imaginable surface, it was time to tackle my closets. I bought these bins to organize cleaning supplies, skin and hair care, first aid products and medication. The bins are clear, which lets me see what’s inside, and they come with lids so I can stack them and maximize space. There’s also built-in handles on the sides that makes pulling them out and moving them around easy. – Zoe Malin, associate updates editor

Why trust Select?

Lindsay Schneider is an editor for NBC Select has covered the self care and lifestyle space for years. She also writes and edits Select’s weekly newsletter, The Selection. For this story, our staff shared their favorite gifts and purchases from the past month.

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Joanna Swanson

Joanna Swanson is Europe correspondent at the Thomson Reuters Foundation based in Brussels covering politics, culture, business, climate change, society, economies and inclusive tech. With specific focus in breaking news, she has covered some of the world's most significant stories.