As concerns about the Delta variant cause areas across the country to reinforce mask mandates, they’re also driving a change in consumer behavior — data shows they’re decreasing their spending — the U.S. Commerce Department said retail sales for July dropped about 1.1 percent compared to June, which is higher than experts expected, and there were sharp declines in spending on cars, clothes and sporting goods. People are also rethinking their upcoming travel plans as the number of positive Covid cases surges in the U.S. And the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) recently extended its face mask requirement on planes and other forms of public transportation into January — it was formerly scheduled to expire in September.
Concerns about Covid variants are also impacting the demand for face masks — we’ve recently seen an increase in online searches around KN95 masks for kids and adults specifically, resulting in a surge in demand brands and manufacturers must navigate. As we previously reported, for example, popular face mask brand VIDA has been replacing KN95 orders with M95 face masks, and has confirmed to us that they don’t contact customers about the switch since “the situation is extremely dynamic” — on product pages, VIDA tells customers they “may receive” the M95 replacement and attributes that potential to “global shortages.”
Beyond recent shopping news, we’ve compiled new and notable launches from Shopping reader favorite brands and others we think you’ll want to know about.
YETI recently updated its water-resistant Camino 35 Carryall Tote Bag to include organization features like two interior zip pockets and full-length dividers that provide support for the bag so it stays standing. The dividers are also deployable — when you’re not using them, they can be tucked away to create one large compartment. Additionally, YETI launched the Rambler Travel Mugs with a Stronghold Lid. The mug — available in 20 and 30 ounce sizes — is the first — and currently the only — piece of drinkware to feature the Stronghold Lid. It’s leak-resistant and twists on and off the mug, and its closure features dual-slider magnet technology to remain in place and prevent spills.
Olay’s Vitamin C + Peptide 24 collection features products designed to brighten skin, even tone and correct discoloration. Formulas feature ingredients like vitamin c, niacinamide, AHA lactic acid and glycerin. There are four products in the collection, all of which Olay recommends using in the morning and at night: a cleanser, serum, eye cream and moisturizer. The cleanser exfoliates and cleans skin before you apply other products. The serum brightens and corrects discoloration, while the eye cream focuses on doing the same specifically around the eyes. Finally, the moisturizer hydrates skin throughout the day. The collection is currently available on Olay’s website and will launch at retailers nationwide in September.
OtterBox’s new MagSafe charger stand is foldable, allowing you to adjust the hinge to change its angle and fold the stand flat to take with you on the go. Once you add a MagSafe charger to the stand, you can attach your iPhone to it in portrait or landscape orientation. The stand stores the charger’s cable and its non-slip weighted base holds it in place. The stand is constructed from polycarbonate, aluminum and synthetic rubber, and it’s Atlas Silver finish is scratch- and fingerprint-resistant.
Burrow’s new Pilot Desk is available in two models: standing and stationary. Both models boast drawers designed to fit a laptop and keyboard, as well as cord management compartments to store power strips and cables. A wood plate on the back of the desks can be removed to reveal an integrated monitor arm mount, too. The standing desk offers up to three programmable height memory positions. The desks are both available in Walnut and Oak colors.
Made for hot sleepers, Serta’s Arctic mattress is built with its newly developed Reactex System, three layers of cooling technology designed to move heat away from your body and into the mattress itself while you sleep. The cooling mattress also features different types of memory foam that conforms to your body and relieves pressure points. It comes in two models: the Serta Actic, available in Plush Foam or Medium Hybrid options, and the Serta Arctic, available in Firm Foam or Plush Hybrid options. Mattresses are sold in four sizes: Twin XL, Queen, King and California King.
SMEG expanded its at-home brewing products with its new Fully-Automatic Coffee Machine and Mini Kettle. The coffee machine can brew six different beverages, like coffee and espresso, and it’s built with a grinder that makes the exact amount of coffee grounds needed for the beverage you select. It’s available in Basic and Medium models, the latter of which has a milk frother attachment. Smeg’s new Mini Kettle is a smaller version of its larger Electric Kettle and offers similar features like an anti-slip base, internal water level indicator and anti-drip spout. It has a 3 cup capacity and it’s available in colors like Pink, White, Pastel Green and more.
The body of the Allbirds Sugar Rovers features the brand’s SweetFoam material made from sugarcane, and its upper sole and midsole are constructed through a single process to cut back on waste. The textured footbed adds grip and the carved out arch windows make the shoes breathable. The Sugar Rovers feature oversized heel crash pads, interior microsuede panels and laces to adjust the fit. The shoes are available in women’s and men’s sizes. They come in two colors — Nyx (black) and Luna (white) — as well as Lavender Fade, a limited-edition shade.
Brooklinen collaborated with Pendleton to launch the Paths Blanket made from a virgin wool and cotton blend. It features geometric patterns and vibrant shades, which differs from Brooklinen’s traditional neutral color palette — the brand said the 64-by-80 inch blanket was designed to compliment its bedding. Brooklinen also released the Color Field Wool Throw Blanket and the Honeycomb Wool Throw Blanket. The Color Field Wool Throw Blanket is decorated with multiple shades like green, yellow and blue, while Honeycomb Wool Throw Blanket is a textured version of the brand’s Pure Wool Throws and comes in two color options: Charcoal and Latte.
Rocketbook, which makes reusable notebooks, introduced a reusable academic planner for students. It features 48 pages of synthetic reusable paper with 13 different page types, like weekly planners and mind maps. Students can use the Rocketbook app to scan pages to the cloud and digitally save writing, or share them through email, Google Drive, Slack, Dropbox and more. To clear a page of writing, wipe it down with a damp cloth and start over. You can write on the pages with a Pilot FriXion pen, marker or highlighter. The reusable planner is available in Black, Teal, Grey or Scarlett.
The X-Frame Hamper is Simplehuman’s first hamper. It’s built with steel bars to prevent buckling as you fill it with dirty clothes. The hamper’s two-tone grey bag is made from recycled polyester and it’s machine-washable. The bag’s inner coating is also stain and odor-resistant. You can stand the bag up by attaching it to the frame, and when you need to throw your clothes in the washing machine, you can remove the bag from the frame by lifting its handles out of their dock. The hamper comes in two styles: single or double.
illy’s electric milk frother allows you to make hot foamed milk, cold foamed milk or hot non-foamed milk. It can be used with dairy or plant-based milks, and to select a function, you press one of the backlit touch buttons on its base. The white milk frother comes with a varnished steel pitcher that has a handle as well as a clear lid. The pitcher holds 8.5 ounces of liquid and must be hand-washed. The milk frother automatically stops when the milk is ready, too.
Spotlight Oral Care’s Kit for Sensitive Teeth features toothpaste, foaming mouthwash and gel, all of which are formulated with sodium fluoride and potassium nitrate — the brand said these ingredients help strengthen tooth enamel and prevent cavities. While Spotlight previously released its toothpaste for sensitive teeth, the foaming mouthwash and gel are new products. The brand suggests using the toothpaste twice daily, the mouthwash in between meals and the gel if you experience tooth pain during the day.
More shopping news and launches
- Bokksu debuted the Moon Festival snack box, a limited-edition collector box for Japan’s Mid-Autumn Festival. It features a variety of snacks inspired by the festival, including mochi, dark chocolate and round yellow senbei.
- Courant introduced the Essentials collection, which features wireless chargers wrapped in linen. The collection includes the Catch:1, Catch:2 and Catch:3 products in three colors: Camel, Charcoal and Natural.
- dermaGEEK, P&G’s newest skincare brand, launched at Walmart in-stores and online. It offers products designed for all skin types, including facial cleanser, moisturizer and serums.
- FaceGym launched the Signature Skin Mini Kit, which features smaller versions of its Electro-Lite Cleanser, Hydro-Bound Serum, Youth Reformer Serum and Supreme Restructure Firming Moisturizer in a pouch to take with you on the go. You can also buy mini versions of each product individually. FaceGym designed companion mini workouts you can access by scanning the QR codes on product bottles.
- Grovemade released a larger version of its Matte Desk Pad: the Medium Plus. It’s available in two colors: Black and Navy.
- Hello Bello products like baby lotion, bubble bath, Everywhere Balm and more are now available in fragrance-free varieties.
- July launched the Carry All Weekender Plus bag, which is shaped like a weekender bag but opens to lay flat like a suitcase.
- Keds introduced its Chunky Sneaker collection, featuring styles designed with a platform base.
- Montblanc introduced UltraBlack, its first all-black cross-category product line featuring items like watches, pens, bags and more.
- Shimmy, a new brand that sells touchless hand sanitizer dispensers, recently launched. It also offers hand sanitizer cartridges that pair with dispensers.
- Vitruvi launched its Stay Diffuser in two new colors: Oat and Espresso.