"When I moved into my apartment, getting a mattress was a top priority. The only bed-in-a-box brand I had heard of at the time was Casper, but my coworkers knew the ins and outs of all the brands I had no idea even existed. I tapped into this wealth of knowledge and was ultimately led to Leesa. While it definitely is pricier than some of the other options I considered, I think it's so worth it — we spend so much time in our beds that paying more for a super comfortable mattress doesn't seem outrageous. My only qualm is that it makes waking up a little hard, because truly it is so cozy I don't want to get up." — Remi Rosmarin, reporter
"Lauren Lyons Cole had been persuading me to try Rent the Runway Unlimited for months until I actually signed up last April. Between her recommendation and the annual credit card summary Chase sends its cardholders — which showed me just how much I’d spent on clothes the previous year, and quite frankly opened my eyes — I finally bit the bullet.
I now have a constantly rotating wardrobe of clothes from some of my favorite brands (Tanya Taylor, Joie, Parker, 10 Crosby by Derek Lam, Saloni, etc.) I could never justify buying, and the convenience of never having to dry clean. The service isn't cheap at $159 a month, but I'm actually spending far less on clothes these days; the last clothing purchase I made (besides my monthly RTR bill) was in October." — Ellen Hoffman, director of content strategy for Insider Picks
"I second Ellen's feelings about Rent the Runway Unlimited! I signed up for it upon her recommendation, and now instead of just buying clothing left and right (which is what I was doing before), I've been checking Rent the Runway for similar styles every time I see something I want to buy — and 90% of the time, there's a better version of it there for me to rent. It cuts down on closet clutter and saves me a lot of money in the long run. — Sally Kaplan, editor
A Purple Seat Cushion
The Purple Royal Seat Cushion, $79, available at Purple and Amazon
"I asked for a Purple Seat Cushion for Christmas after editing Jessica Klein's review of hers a few months earlier, and it's amazing what an instant and marked improvement it's made! Besides improving my posture while seated, it has made sitting down all day for my desk job significantly more comfortable." — Ellen Hoffman, director of content strategy for Insider Picks
"When my friends and peers tell me they have a holy grail product, I know they mean it. Having dealt with acne for half my life and knowing Sally has, too, I clung on to the fact that she clings on dearly to these strong skin peels. Since they are expensive, I bought the smaller sample pack first to see how my skin would fare. Sally set up the proper expectations in her review by calling out how strong the peels are and what your skin could look and feel like, so I didn’t freak out after my first use. They’ve become a regular part of my skincare routine, but I don’t know that I would’ve bit the bullet if not for Sally’s review." — Connie Chen, reporter
"Convincing me to buy anything is a herculean task, and getting me to buy a $20 lip balm seems utterly laughable, but somehow Erin pulled it off with her winning description of the Laneige lip mask in her buying guide to the best lip balms. She talked about how big of a difference it made with her chapped lips in the winter, but it was this line that did me in: 'A 0.7-ounce pot costs $20, but I've been using my first one for over a year and I only just dipped past the halfway mark.' Long lasting and effective? Sign me up. So finally, after months of winter chapped lips peeling and using ineffective Vaseline, I finally decided to buy the lip mask, and I love it." — Malarie Gokey, senior editor
"We've already established that I don't buy things often, especially when they're expensive, but this sweater remains the most out-of-character purchase I've ever made. I spent $155 on a sweater (!) because of a conversation with my colleague Ellen in Business Insider's kitchen. She was wearing this Everlane waffle knit sweater that I'd been eyeing for months, so I asked her about it, I touched the fabric, and the rest is history. I ended up writing an entire article about why I think that sweater is worth it even though it's really expensive. Everlane's cashmere is just that wonderfully soft — especially when it's done in a waffle knit." — Malarie Gokey, senior editor
"I signed up for this credit card based on David's review, and I timed it right when I'd be making some big purchases for my apartment so I could easily meet the minimum amount for the 50,000 point bonus ($4,000 in the first three months). Like Ellen, I opted for it over the Reserve because of the lower fee, and because it still earns me double the points on travel and food, which is where I spend most of my money anyway. I'm still hoarding my 80,000+ points for our next vacation!" — Sally Kaplan, editor
"When I first read Sally’s review of Greetabl, it sounded like a cool concept, but I didn’t have any occasion to use it at the time. I’m honestly not a frequent gift giver, but I loved the idea of sending a small, thoughtful surprise that wasn’t just a card.
I kept Greetabl in the back of my mind, and an opportunity in the form of multiple friends applying to (and stressing over) grad schools gave me the chance to try the service for myself. Thanks to Sally’s clear walkthrough, I knew exactly what to expect in the process and I quickly churned out a few small gifts, personalized to my recipients’ personalities and adorned with photo memories of our friendship, to send as pick-me-ups in the midst of their grad school anxiety. Their surprised and happy reactions was probably the most satisfying part of the whole experience." — Connie Chen, reporter
"I sent a Greetabl to my friend for her birthday a couple weeks after reading Sally's review of the service instead of just a nice greeting card. It's a pretty inexpensive way to make someone's day, whether it's their birthday or for no particular reason at all." — Ellen Hoffman, director of content strategy for Insider Picks
"I bought a set of Brooklinen sheets, a duvet cover, and a down comforter thanks to Ellen’s insightful review. I’ve had them for over a year and they’ve held up beautifully. In fact, they’ve gotten softer over time. Prior to this, I bought expensive sheets from department stores, which never seemed to last." — Lauren Lyons Cole, director of personal finance for Insider Picks
"My coworker Amir Ismael first turned me on to United By Blue with their socks over the summer. I put them on, thought they felt nice, and then noticed my feet were sweating. I’ll never need these things, I thought to myself. Then winter came.
The temperature was creeping down to what had become a very unfamiliar and unbearably uncomfortable level. Frantically, on Black Friday no less, I scrambled to find the thickest, warmest socks known to mankind. Then, serendipitously, a United By Blue sale popped up in my email inbox and I quickly recalled how my feet roasted and perspired in their socks. Oh how the tables had turned. Perchance to dream! I dusted off my wallet, rummaged into its bowels for my credit card, and blew a cool pair of Benjamins without thinking twice.
At $38 a pair, these Bison wool socks aren’t cheap (frankly, they’re almost more than I’m generally willing to spend on even a pair of shoes), but they’re as thick as can be and even after about a dozen washes, they’re still thick and springy as virgin wool. I’m wearing them at this very moment, and my feet and I continue to exist with profuse gratitude to Amir. If your feet are even remotely cold right now, buy these socks. Yes, I know they’re $38, but if I’ve learned anything upon my return to the dreary, sludgy brown streets of the northeast, it’s that you cannot put a price on a good pair of socks." — Owen Burke, senior reporter
"After reading this review on Mighty Patch’s Hydrocolloid stickers and asking Connie more about them in person, I bought some of my own. Flash forward a few months, and they’re my best and last resort to surprise breakouts. I can’t tell you enough how much I wish I’d had these in high school." — Mara Leighton, Insider Picks reporter
"When I started working at Business Insider, Bombas was one of the first brands that really stood out to me because of how much time the founders spent engineering the gym socks. Coming from wearing basic Hanes or Fruit of the Loom socks that never hold their shape, I knew I needed to try them. Bombas socks are comfortable all around — they’re cushioned, they never twist or move around, and the blister tab works wonders with low-top sneakers. On top of that, Bombas donates a pair of socks to someone in need every time a pair is sold. I do still have socks from other brands in my drawer, but Bombas are easily my favorite to buy and wear." — Amir Ismael, reporter
"Before I remembered Connie’s feature on Journy, I was so stressed out by the details of planning my last international trip (researching restaurants abroad, mapping out must-see sights to group them by neighborhood, and allocating time for all the activities the group wanted to include) that I wasn't even enjoying the anticipation of a big trip. Using Journy was such a game changer — they took into account the sites I wanted to see, the one or two restaurants I really wanted to go to, and helped me keep both mine and my companions’ preferences in mind without too much angst." — Mara Leighton, reporter
"I’d rather be taking in the city than scrolling through Instagram while abroad, but that doesn’t change the fact that 24/7 access to Wi-Fi is almost inconceivably convenient for international travel. That’s what makes this mobile hotspot the best travel purchase I’ve ever made, and I owe it all to David. With it, you never have to listen in on another tour guide’s explanation of a landmark again. Nor do you have to wander around the alleys of Athens alone trying to find a way back to your hostel. You can connect with friends, research restaurants, and make the most of your time without elaborate offline planning, a local phone, or highway-robbery cell phone bills." — Mara Leighton, reporter
"As a mid-twenties urban-ite, much of my paycheck goes towards food and groceries, so I signed up for the American Express Gold Card after learning that it earns 4x points per dollar at US supermarkets (up to $25,000 per year; 1x point after that) and restaurants, making it one of the most competitive cards for those categories. I also prioritized its superior airport lounge access. It didn’t hurt that I signed up during a deal that gave applicants 20% back as a statement credit on U.S. restaurant purchases for the first three months (up to $100)." — Mara Leighton, reporter
"When I first started working as a reporter on the Insider Picks team, I think I heard a team member mention this exact pair of lounge pants at least once per week. Since they’d gained the unanimous respect of a group of product reviewers, I bought them out of blind faith. Two years later, I still wear them multiple times per week — and they’re among the most comfortable pants I’ve ever owned. They’re super soft, drape nicely, and put up with the abuse of an undiscerning laundry cycle remarkably well." — Mara Leighton, reporter