We visited a Victoria’s Secret flagship store and saw how it’s trying to win back customers by turning up the lights and toning down risque marketing

Victoria's Secret store Bond Street
Victoria’s Secret’s new marketing campaign.

  • Victoria’s Secret is in the process of refreshing its entire store fleet.
  • It’s promising to turn up the lights and replace its bubblegum pink interiors.
  • We visited its London flagship to see how different it is to shop in its stores today.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.
We headed to Victoria’s Secret’s flagship store in London on a sunny afternoon.

Victoria's Secret store Bond Street
The store opened in 2012.

It’s located on New Bond Street, one of the more upscale shopping areas in London.

The most immediate difference we noticed was the marketing in its store windows.

Victoria's Secret store Bond Street
The store windows looked very different.

In the past, these would have shown racy images of its Angels. But with the Angels brand behind them, these were swapped out for more body-positive campaigns where the focus is on a day-to-day, toned-down look of underwear.

The store seemed radically different when we walked in. Previously, the lights were dimmed, music was booming, and images of its Angels (that have been described as borderline pornographic by some shoppers) covered the walls.

Victoria's Secret store Bond Street
Victoria’s Secret’s new marketing campaign.

On this visit, it instantly felt more modern and light inside. 

Source: Insider.

But as we headed deeper inside the ground floor area, it felt a lot more similar to the old Victoria’s Secret than we had first thought.

Victoria's Secret Bond Street store
The ground floor area.

The lights may have been turned up but its signature pink, black, and white interior remained…

Victoria's Secret Bond Street
Boudoir-like displays.

A spokesperson for Victoria’s Secret told Insider that it plans to completely redo all its stores eventually. For the moment, some stores will only have more minor aesthetic changes.

…as did its boudoir-like fitting rooms.

Victoria's Secret Bond Street store
Fitting room.

While we weren’t expecting the interior to be completely redone, we were expecting to see the more toned-down lingerie that appeared in the windows to be front and center of the store.

Victoria's Secret Bond Street store
Victoria’s Secret’s “Very Sexy” collection.

Instead, it put its most risque lingerie near the entrance, including its “Very Sexy,” “Luxe,” and “Dream Angels” collections.

It might have abandoned the Angels and its racy marketing but it felt like it’s not quite ready for the product to match that. 

Its signature push-up bras were in prime position but plus-size mannequins, maternity bras, and more casual underwear were nowhere to be seen.

Victoria's Secret Bond Street store
Push-up bras.

As we headed to the staircase at the back of the store we noticed a major change.

Victoria's Secret Bond Street
A giant silver staircase is a prominent feature in its store.

In the past, videos of its Angels walking its annual runway show would have run on a loop on the screens behind the staircase. When we visited, these videos had been swapped out for shots featuring curvier women. 

As we headed up to the next floor, we were immediately greeted by a stand showcasing one of its partnerships with a British lingerie brand.

Victoria's Secret Bond Street store
Victoria’s Secret launched a partnership with Bluebella in 2019.

The brand on display, Bluebella, was outspoken about the lack of inclusivity in the lingerie world before it partnered up with Victoria’s Secret. The tagline of its new collection for Victoria’s Secret is: “Lingerie designed for women who buy lingerie to please themselves.”

This was our first glimpse of its swimwear collection.

Victoria's Secret Bond Street store
Victoria’s Secret swimwear collection.

Victoria’s Secret scrapped swimwear along with some of its apparel offerings in order to focus on underwear in April 2016. It brought this back in 2018.

This area of the store was dedicated to its more laid-back styles, including athleisurewear.

Victoria's Secret Bond Street store
Leggings for sale.

Victoria’s Secret has been criticized for being slow to get on the athleticwear trend. One former senior staffer previously told Insider that former leaders felt “sweat is only sexy when you’re having sex” and avoided sports bras because of this. 

This week, it launched its new Lululemon-esque gymwear collection, “On Point,” which is not yet available for sale in the UK.

We were surprised to see that there wasn’t a bigger focus on these casual styles at the entrance of the store. 

We found a mix of sports bras and casual T-shirt bra styles here.

Victoria's Secret Bond Street
New marketing appeared here too.

Next, we headed down to the bottom, and final, floor of the store.

Victoria's Secret Bond Street store

This sprawling section is devoted it its Pink brand, which is targeted at college-age and teen customers.

This was the first time we spotted its new fuller-sized, mannequins. Victoria’s Secret is promising to bring these to all of its stores.

 

While analysts have praised the mannequins as a more inclusive move, some shoppers say it’s still falling short by not offering enough extended sizes.

Victoria's Secret Bond Street store
Fuller-sized mannequins.

“If I’m a size 14, which is on the smaller end of the plus-size range, and the largest panties Victoria’s Secret makes are uncomfortably tight on me, I think about the 50% or more of women who are still unable to wear the brand,” writer Mandy Shunnarah said after visiting Victoria’s Secret’s pilot store in Columbus. 

Victoria’s Secret said it offers up to a size 20, though not in all styles. 

The Pink brand was once the strongest part of Victoria’s Secret’s portfolio from a sales perspective. But around 2018, sales slipped at the brand and it was forced to lean on heavy discounting to shift stock.

Victoria's Secret Bond Street store
The sale section.

While we still spotted a discount section at Pink, there wasn’t an overwhelming amount of product on sale.

 

At that time, other teen-focused brands such as American Eagle’s Aerie started to take market share with more inclusive marketing and body-positive campaigns that resonated with young shoppers.

Victoria's Secret Bond Street store
Victoria’s Secret Bond Street store

Pink is clearly doubling down on this now. Videos promoting its campaigns around diversity and inclusion were playing in the background of the cash register for customers to watch while they check out their shopping. 

Pink is known for being a logo-heavy brand, something that analysts have said can be detrimental. If a brand stops being seen as trendy, shoppers no longer see the value in their logos and they spend elsewhere, for example.

Victoria's Secret Bond Street store
Pink logos.

According to Victoria’s Secret CEO Martin Waters, Pink has seen “super strong” performance for its logo business in the first three months of the year, however.

 

 

Waters said tie-dye apparel was a big seller for the brand too. This was tactically positioned right at the front of the Pink store.

Victoria's Secret Bond Street store
Tie-die is having a moment in fashion.

But bras and panties are still its bread and butter and there was a ton on display. More casual styles such as bralettes still had the Victoria’s Secret spin, however, with the extra push-up.

Victoria's Secret Bond Street store
Pink bralettes.

While the store shopping experience does feel different, the company has a way to go to convince critics that its rebrand is more than just a glossy marketing campaign.

This means putting plus-size mannequins in all areas of the store and giving the lingerie that appears in its new more inclusive marketing campaigns a prime position in store.

 

 

 

 

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The best online sales and deals happening now, including Coursera, Madewell, and Macy’s

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best online sales deals

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We rounded up the best sales and deals happening online today, including details on Nordstrom’s annual Anniversary Sale, plus discounts at Patagonia, Everlane, and Spanx.

Deals in this story are subject to change throughout the day. The prices listed reflect the deal at the time of publication. For even more deals and savings across the web, check out our roundup of the best deals from Amazon and what our team is shopping for during the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale.

The best sales and discounts happening right now

Get up to 70% off at Macy’s

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Shop the Macy’s The Big Home Sale now

Macy’s The Big Home Sale is a good chance to freshen up your home. A huge selection of bathroom gear, dining accessories, luggage, furniture, and bedding is up to 70% off during the sale. 

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Get 25% off your first month of select Coursera courses

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Coursera.

Enroll in a Coursera IBM course now.

Coursera offers online courses that are affordable and give you the skills and credentials you need for a new career in tech. If you enroll before August 31, a selection of IBM courses are 25% off for your first month, including Applied AI, Data Analysis, and Cybersecurity. 

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Get an extra 30% off sale items at Madewell

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Shop the Madewell sale now.

From indie brands to high-waisted jeans, Madewell is a great source for apparel you’ll love. Right now, you can knock an extra 30% off select sale items with promo code SALEONSALE at checkout. 

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Get up to 75% off at Universal Standard

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Shop the Universal Standard Annual Sample sale now.

Universal Standard makes jeans for wearers of different sizes that we found to be universally flattering and comfortable. The brand also makes apparel like dresses, blazers, and more — a lot of which you can find with a discount during its Annual Sample Sale. 

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Get a free cleaning set from Grove

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Join the Grove Collaborative now

Grove sells essentials that are healthy for you and your environment, from cleaning supplies to skincare. Right now, if you spend at least $20 on an order from the store, you can claim a free essentials set of your choice, including a Mrs. Meyer’s set valued at over $50.

cleaning set (medium)
Save up to 70% off during the Nordstrom Anniversary sale

Nordstrom Anniversary Sale 2021

Shop the Nordstrom Anniversary sale now

Nordstrom’s huge Anniversary sale is live now through Sunday, August 8. This is the luxury department store’s most popular sale of the year. During the sale, you can save big on clothing, plus home goods, bedding, and kitchenware.

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Save on select Spanx designs

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Shop the Spanx sale now.

Through August 8, Spanx is holding a big sale featuring deep discounts, and a wide variety of apparel and underwear is included in the sale. The brand makes flattering designs, from bras to denim, that we’ve loved over the years

Faux Leather Side Stripe Leggings (medium, Preferred: Spanx)Power Conceal-Her open-bust, mid-thigh bodysuit (medium, Preferred: Spanx)
Get up to 50% off at Patagonia

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Shop the Patagonia web specials sale now

Patagonia is a sustainable outdoor clothing brand that boasts a huge variety of gear for men, women, and children. To get discounted prices on jackets, pants, sweaters, and more, shopping through the web specials section will save you money on some of Patagonia’s most popular styles from last season. 

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Get up to $50 off at Tushy

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Shop the Tushy Hole-idays in July Sale now

If you’re looking to snag a new bidet, Tushy is holding a big sale featuring up to $50 off sitewide. Its toilet attachments are hygienic and eco-friendly; they can even save you the money you’d otherwise spend on toilet paper. Through July 31, you can get $15 off $100, $30 off $150, or $50 off $200+. 

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Get up to 60% off at Everlane

Everlane

Shop the Everlane Summer Sale now.

Looking for a chance to update your wardrobe? Everlane’s huge summer sale is as good an opportunity as any. During the event, nearly 1,000 different styles for men and women are up to 60% off, including underwear as low as $6 and t-shirts as low as $9. For shopping inspiration, check out our roundup of the best deals here.

The ReNew Sport Sandal (medium)The Perform Legging (medium)
The best deals and sales available now

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Amazon

  • Anthropologie: Get an extra 25% off sale items.
  • Athleta: Get up to 60% off select gear. 
  • Backcountry: Get up to 30% off The North Face gear. 
  • Bare necessities: Get up to 40% off intimates and up to 70% off swimsuits. 
  • Bed, Bath, and Beyond: Get 20% off all college essentials.
  • Cara: Get 70% off all swimsuits. 
  • Chewy: Save with Chewy Summer Deals.
  • HBO Max: Get $25 off an annual plan after adding the promotion to your American Express card. 
  • Headspace: Get 50% off your first year.
  • Lo and Sons: Get up to 50% off select bags through July 31.
  • Madewell: Get an extra 30% off sale items with promo code SALEONSALE
  • Mirror: Get $150 off your Mirror plus free shipping and installation with promo code JULY400 through July 31.
  • Nike: Get up to 50% off select styles through August 7.
  • Olay: Get 25% off sitewide. 
  • Plants.com: Get 20% off plants for the office with promo code OFFICE20
  • Sur la Table: Get up to 75% off kitchenware. 
  • Verishop: Get up to 70% off apparel, home, and more. 
  • Winc: Get four bottles of wine for $30. 

Read more about how the Insider Reviews team evaluates deals and why you should trust us.

Read the original article on Business Insider

The 4 best exercise balls we tested in 2021

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  • An exercise ball is perfect for working on stability and flexibility and makes bodyweight exercises harder.
  • The best exercise balls have a durable exterior, are mild flexibility, and retain air well.
  • Our top pick, the TheraBand Exercise and Stability Ball, has thick walls and holds air even if punctured.

Exercise balls might seem like a boring piece of workout equipment that sits in the corner of the gym with no one using it. But that’s only because it’s an overlooked dark horse – the benefits of adding one to your workout far outweigh any perceived dullness. In fact, as a part of a home gym setup, an exercise ball has the ability to greatly improve one’s core strength while also helping hone balance and flexibility.

Whether it accompanies a daily workout routine or becomes the central focal point, an exercise ball can be an important part of anyone’s plan to keep fit and healthy. (For what it’s worth, while many used to think using an exercise ball in lieu of your home office chair was better for your spine, experts actually recommend against it now.)

To find the best exercise balls worth using, I tested an assortment of models from brands like TheraBand, DynaPro, and Wacces. The goal was to find those that fit a variety of use cases, like being portable or constructed of a thicker material that increases its durability. After spending the last several months using exercise balls as both my office chair and main workout partner, I narrowed the list down to my four favorites listed below.

At the end of this guide, I’ve also included some insight into what to look for in a quality ball, the exact benefits of using one, and why they’re an important part of anyone’s home gym setup.

Here are the best exercise balls:

The best exercise ball overall

exercise ball

The TheraBand Exercise and Stability Ball holds air better than most exercise balls — even if it’s punctured.

Pros: Maintains its shape and holds air better than other exercise balls, includes a slow deflate technology if the ball is punctured, extremely firm, has a good surface for just the right amount of grip, offered in four sizes

Cons: Takes a long time to inflate, no inflation pump included, only one color per size

One common complaint among exercise ball fans is the inability of the ball to hold air over time. As air leaks out of the ball, it loses its firmness and becomes difficult to use. The TheraBand Exercise and Stability Ball, though, is one of the thickest-walled balls you can buy, and it holds air longer than most of the competition.

Even if it’s punctured, the ball will deflate very slowly, allowing you to finish your workout. Because the Theraband Exercise Ball retains air so well, you won’t have to reinflate it that often, which is a very good thing because this ball does take quite a bit of time to inflate in the first place.

The exercise ball is available in four sizes from 45 cm to 75 cm and it comes in a few colors.

The best portable exercise ball

DynaPro Exercise Ball

The DynaPro Exercise Ball is extremely durable and will hold its air pressure nicely, but it’s also portable, thanks to its easy-to-carry hand pump.

Pros: Good price point, easy to fill while on the go because of an included hand pump, very durable material in the ball, prevents fast leaks when it suffers a puncture, available in four sizes and four different colors

Cons: Cannot fully inflate the ball the first time you use it, firmness level of the ball seems below average

When you’re looking for an exercise ball you can take with you anywhere, the DynaPro Exercise Ball is a good idea. It ships with a hand pump and inflates faster than many other balls, so you can be ready to use it within several minutes.

The ball is available in four sizes, ranging from 45 cm to 75 cm, and it features slight ribs around the circumference of the ball to ensure a steady grip. You can get it in a few fun colors, including pink, blue, silver, gray, and black.

Like many exercise balls, you can also use it for active seating in your office. Unlike most exercise balls, it’s available in gray or black, which fits in better with an office setting than a brightly colored ball. 

This is a tough, durable exercise ball, featuring a 2,000-pound burst rating. The ball also slowly deflates if it ever suffers a puncture, allowing you to finish your workout safely.

However, the ball cannot be inflated fully the first time you use it. You’ll have to inflate it fully after it’s had 2-3 days to stretch out.

The best exercise ball for bigger bodies

tall man exercise ball

The Live Infinitely Exercise Ball receives high marks for its durability and ability to stand up to tough workouts.

Pros: Excellent price point, durable and tough exercise ball that can withstand 2,200 pounds of weight, available in as large as 95 cm diameter, five color and five size options, includes a large library of online exercise guides

Cons: There is no 45 cm diameter size option in this model, difficult to fully inflate this ball

We’re not here to say what an average-sized body is or who is bigger-than-average. But if you’ve ever sat on an exercise ball before and felt like it couldn’t support your height, width, weight, or frame for whatever reason, you need a ball that is bigger and more durable so you aren’t worrying about it popping or slipping out from under you.

In fact, you want your exercise ball to correspond to your size for a few reasons: When you’re sitting on it, you want it to be durable enough to hold your weight and wide enough to hold your buttocks. When you put it underfoot in plank or, say, Bulgarian split squats, the height of the ball influences your form; too small of a ball and your feet are below your hips which can compromise the integrity of your movements, for example.

Because of this, a ball that’s right for someone who’s 5’3 isn’t going to fit someone who’s 6’8, and someone who is 350lbs needs a more durable construction than someone who is 150lbs. (Learn more about What to look for in an exercise ball.)

The Live Infinitely Exercise Ball is one of the few options that comes in five sizes ranging from 55 cm to 95 cm. You can also choose between five colors, including blue, green, gray, purple, and silver.

What’s more, it can hold up to 2,200 pounds of pressure. So while we doubt you’ll ever max out its capabilities, the Live Infinitely Exercise Ball allows you to feel comfortable and secure putting all your weight and force onto it, regardless of your size.

The best budget exercise ball

exercise ball 5

If you want an affordable exercise ball that’s also durable, the Wacces Fitness and Exercise ball is a great option.

Pros: Extremely low price point, good build quality versus similarly priced exercise balls, surface has just enough grip to prevent slippage, ribs around circumference of ball provide extra grip, offered in eight colors

Cons: Only available in three sizes, difficult to fully inflate it first time you use it, doesn’t hold air pressure as well as some models

With some low-priced exercise balls, you may feel wary about placing your full weight on them for fear of an exploding ball that leaves you crashing onto the floor. But the durability of the Wacces Fitness and Exercise Ball gives you the peace of mind you’ll need to use this inexpensive ball to its fullest.

Even though it’s less expensive than other options, this ball is still quite durable and has a good grippy surface. The biggest downside is that it doesn’t support as much weight as more high-end exercise balls.

You can pick between three different sizes, ranging from 55 cm to 75 cm. It’s also available in eight colors, including black, blue, gray, green, pink, purple, red, or yellow.

What to look for in an exercise ball

Yes, an exercise ball is a simple, large round ball that looks like every other exercise ball at first glance. There are still several key differences you can pay attention to when looking to find the right exercise ball to meet your needs.

  • Ease of adding air: Some exercise balls include an air pump, however, most of these pumps work very slowly. If you want a faster option, you should be able to use almost any type of pump to inflate your exercise ball, such as an air mattress pump, a bicycle tire pump, or even an air compressor. To determine when the ball is properly filled with air, measure its diameter.
  • Extras: Depending on the model of exercise ball you pick, you may find the ball ships with an air pump, exercise bands, a stability ring, stability legs, a measuring tape, an exercise tip guide, or handles built into the ball. 
  • Size: The size of a stability ball is determined by its diameter. Common sizes of exercise balls range from 45 cm to 85 cm in 10 cm intervals. (Ten centimeters is roughly 4 inches.) People shorter than 5 feet will have the best results with sitting on a 45 cm ball, 6-feet-tall people will want a 65 cm ball, and those 6-foot-8 and taller will want an 85 cm ball. 
  • Supported weight: Exercise balls should offer supported weight limits for static weight and body weight. Static weight refers to the weight the ball supports without bursting when the user is not moving. Bodyweight refers to the weight it can support when the user is exercising. High-end balls may support static weight limits of 2,200 pounds and body weights of 500 pounds. A stability ball placed under too much weight or stress could burst.

Exercise ball benefits

man family exercise ball

People use an exercise ball for two main reasons: to workout with and to sit on. While we fully support using this accessory in your workout, most chiropractors and physical therapists actually recommend you don’t trade your office chair for a ball. Studies have found it not only makes prolonged sitting more uncomfortable, but it doesn’t actually activate your muscles better and may in fact contribute to spinal shrinkage (aka slumping). This is all because you must keep your core engaged for optimal spinal alignment, and it’s incredibly hard to maintain perfect posture when sitting for a long time.

That being said, an exercise ball is safe and a great challenge to your body during a workout, where you’re only stabilizing against it for a few minutes at a time. Here are some of the primary benefits exercise balls provide during a workout:

  • Improved balance: You’ll naturally strengthen your abs and back muscles while using an exercise ball because you must subtly shift your weight to remain balanced. As these muscles strengthen, your overall balance improves.
  • Core strength: Athletes constantly talk about the importance of having core strength in the body, as it gives you great balance and coordination. Using an exercise ball increases core strength.
  • Muscle work: Because you have to continually adjust your weight slightly to maintain your balance on the ball, you’ll be using different muscle groups, which benefits your whole body.
  • Rehabilitation and flexibility: You’ll stretch muscles and joints while moving around. Physical therapists sometimes assign a set of exercises using an exercise ball for people to follow as part of rehabilitating a specific joint or muscle group to gain more range of motion.
  • Specific exercises: If you enjoy exercises like Pilates or yoga, you’ll gain some additional benefits by incorporating an exercise ball into the routine.

Why exercise balls are an important part of a home gym

Despite their inherent value, exercise balls aren’t typically the first piece of gear you think of when piecing together a home gym. The truth is in the application, as they work for a host of exercises requiring flexible support. Even though an exercise ball is round, it gives you a base that’s more solid than you might think and provides impressive stability.  

The balls compress when weight is put on them to create a flatter, more stable edge. It won’t be as stable as a normal chair but it’s far more solid than you’d expect — which is what makes them great for everything from active seating to working out.

An exercise ball is an amazing addition to any ab workout, as you can hold it between your feet to bump the challenge of leg raises or prop your feet on the ball during plank for more of a core challenge. You can also sit on the ball instead of a bench to activate your core during simple exercises like chest flys and overhead presses. (Learn more from our guide on the best at-home exercise ball routines.)

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HBO Max is offering a free trial to new subscribers who are already signed up for Hulu – here’s how to take advantage

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“Space Jam: A New Legacy” now streaming on HBO Max.

  • New subscribers can get one week of HBO Max for free.
  • The free trial of HBO Max is offered as a Hulu ad-on, where you can get 30-days of Hulu for free in addition to HBO Max for one week.
  • Watch HBO Max originals and newly released movies including “Space Jam” A New Legacy.”

free trial as Hulu add-on (medium)

HBO Max has a huge library of movies and shows, including older original content from HBO and new content called “Max originals.” Right now, new subscribers can get a 7-day free trial to HBO Max attached to a 30-day free trial of Hulu.

Setting HBO Max apart from its competitors, the streaming service releases movies on HBO Max the same day they would be released in theaters. Subscribers can enjoy blockbuster films from the comfort of their home – a game changer during the pandemic.

Now, you can stream recently released film including “Space Jam: A New Legacy” with the HBO Max free trial.

How to get a HBO Max free trial

To get the 7-day HBO Max free trial, you have to sign up for Hulu with HBO Max as an add-on. This may seem like extra work, but it’s an excellent deal since you also get a 30-day free trial to Hulu in addition to the 7 days of free HBO Max.

HBO Max does not have a free trial directly through them, but if you like to keep your streaming services in one place, this is the best way to do it. Plus, you get two free trials with one sign-up. 

When the HBO Max trials ends after 7 days, you will be charged $15/month if you choose to keep the subscription. The ad-supported HBO Max subscription for $10/month is not an option through Hulu. You will also be charged for your Hulu subscription after the 30-day free trial wraps up.

If you’re someone who forgets to cancel free trials, you can set a reminder in your phone to avoid getting charged after the trials end. 

Frequently asked questions

What are the best shows on HBO Max?

HBO Max has hundreds of shows to browse including Max originals, HBO originals, and other non-original shows. You can enjoy popular shows such as “Games of Thrones,” “Euphoria,” “Mare of Easttown,” “The Sopranos,” “Hacks,” “In Treatment,” “Rick and Morty,” “Friends,” “The White Lotus,” and “Batwoman.” 

In addition to the large library of shows offered by the streaming service, HBO Max allows subscribers to stream new Warner Bros. films on the streaming platform instead of going to the movie theater.

What is the best streaming service?

Each streaming service is a little bit different, so we’ve put together a list of our favorite streaming services that offer subscriptions. We placed services into categories for on-demand streaming, live TV, and channel-specific streaming. 

Apple TV Plus, NetflixHBO MaxHuluAmazon Prime VideoParamount Plus, and Peacock TV are the best streaming services for on-demand entertainment. 

For live TV include, the best streaming services are Hulu + Live TVYoutube TV, Philo TV, Fubo TVAT&T TV, and Sling TV.  

The best services for streaming channels that we included in our list are ShowtimeStarz, and ESPN+.

Check out our guide to the best streaming services to read more about each service. 

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11 beautiful San Diego hotels that offer central locations, incredible rooftops, or beach and golf perks

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Fairmont Grand Del Mar  Trip Advisor
  • San Diego is home to beaches, a military base, a world-famous zoo, and many outdoor activities.
  • From urban towers with water views to beachfront resorts, we vetted the city’s best hotels.
  • Our picks are based on our own reviews and offer great amenities for a Southern California getaway.

Table of Contents: Masthead Sticky

With beachfront resorts, contemporary downtown hotels, and intimate Spanish-inspired bungalows, San Diego’s hotels are as varied and exciting as the city itself. Whether your visit is for business, golf, world-class spas, the beach, or, of course, Comic Con, there’s a hotel to meet your needs.

To highlight the best hotels in San Diego, we made selections based on our own expert hotel reviews and experiences on property, and also set discerning criteria to determine the best hotels in the city. Though, if you prefer a vacation rental, we’ve got you covered too.

Whenever your travels next take you to San Diego, consult our list of the best hotels, from Coronado Bay to downtown, and Rancho Santa Fe.

Browse all the best hotels in San Diego below, or jump directly to a specific area here:

These are the best San Diego hotels, sorted by price from low to high.

Kimpton Hotel Palomar San Diego

Kimpton Palomar San Diego - Hotel Review
The views from Skyline rooms are incredible. So is the late night taco window.

Book Kimpton Hotel Palomar San Diego

This bang-on-trend property in the heart of San Diego’s buzzing Gaslamp district is popular with younger travelers who appreciate a look and feel that’s equal parts trendy and modern and perks like complimentary wine at check-in. 

There are 211 rooms set over 20 stories with the top four floors reserved for Skyline Collection rooms that have expansive views of San Diego and include touches like surfboard headboards, upcycled light fixtures, and shibori curtains. Every room is design-forward with crisp white linens and Atelier Bloem bath products and stocked with useful extras like yoga mats and umbrellas.

There’s also a posh rooftop pool, an on-site Mexican eatery that specializes in elevated street fare, and a pet-friendly attitude that treats your dogs like VIPs.

COVID-19 procedures are available here.

Read our full hotel review of Kimpton Hotel Palomar San Diego

The Guild Hotel San Diego, A Tribute Portfolio Hotel

The courtyard restaurant at the Guild San Diego.
The courtyard restaurant, Luca, feels like you’ve been transported to the south of France.

Book The Guild Hotel San Diego, A Tribute Portfolio Hotel

In downtown San Diego there are many corporate big-box hotels and it can be hard to find a middle ground between modern and intimate and a reasonable price point. Enter the Guild San Diego, a Tribute Portfolio Hotel from Marriott Bonvoy.

The hotel is a newer addition to downtown, housed in a century-old Armed Services YMCA. Yet rather than erasing the building’s past, the owners lovingly embraced its former life in an effort to honor San Diego’s rich maritime heritage.

Ornate, Italian Renaissance Revival exteriors were preserved, while run-down dormitory-style interiors were transformed into a sleek lobby. Well-appointed rooms feel upscale with modern velvet furnishings. But the standout is a tranquil but glam pale pink courtyard and urban garden that feels like you’ve been transported to the south of France.

COVID-19 procedures are available here.

Read our full hotel review of The Guild San Diego

InterContinental San Diego

The swimming pool at InterContinental San Diego
Kick back on the rooftop pool for great views.

Book InterContinental San Diego

Located on the historic grounds of Lane Field (the former baseball stadium for the San Diego Padres) and part of IHG hotels, the InterContinental’s downtown waterfront location offers a prime vantage point of the San Diego Bay and is a close walk from the Embarcadero, where the USS Midway Museum, Broadway Pier, and cruise ship terminals are located.

Housing 400 guest rooms over 19 stories, InterContinental San Diego is a mass of oversized windows overlooking the water with rooms that are above average in size and generally very affordable in price. Since the real draw here is the bay, splurging on a room that overlooks industrial buildings wouldn’t sit right — spring for a water view. There are also spacious two-room suites, ideal for families.

COVID-19 procedures are available here.

Read our full hotel review of InterContinental San Diego

Manchester Grand Hyatt San Diego

A guest room at Manchester Grand Hyatt San Diego.
Book a corner room for panoramic views.

Book Manchester Grand Hyatt San Diego

While there are cheaper downtown options in San Diego, the Manchester Grand Hyatt consistently delivers a high level of sophistication alongside friendly staff, plenty of on-site dining, and a central waterfront location.

With 1,628 guestrooms, including 76 suites, the hotel is huge but not impossible to manage. Rates are accessible in price too if you’re not specific about which incredible view you receive. And there isn’t a bad one; all rooms overlook either the Pacific Ocean, San Diego Bay, or downtown city area.

The hotel earns added appeal as the West Coast’s tallest waterfront hotel and is just steps from attractions like the Gaslamp Quarter, the USS Midway, and San Diego’s scenic Embarcadero. 

COVID-19 procedures are available here.

Read our full hotel review of Manchester Grand Hyatt San Diego

Pacific Terrace Hotel

Pacific Terrace Hotel   Trip Advisor
The hardest part of staying here will be choosing beach or pool.

Book Pacific Terrace Hotel

Directly facing the ocean at the end of the Pacific Beach boardwalk, this beachy hotel’s waterfront location is gorgeous. There are 73 rooms and suites with rich wood furnishings, plantation shutters, and bright pops of turquoise for a tropical island feel. Book a room with an ocean view and watch as San Diego strolls, runs, bikes, and rollerblades by, and surfers catch early morning waves. 

If you can’t choose between pool or ocean, know that the former directly faces the sand for a best-of-both-worlds lounging option. Beach buckets and shovels, toys, boogie boards, and bikes are available for guests’ use, and the hotel is well-located near attractions such as the San Diego Zoo, Torrey Pines State Beach, Belmont Park, Crystal Pier, and is just eight miles north of San Diego’s International Airport.

COVID-19 procedures are available here.

Loews Coronado Bay Resort

A suite at Loews Coronado Bay Resort.
Book an ocean or bay view so you don’t end up facing a parking lot.

Book Loews Coronado Bay Resort

Coronado might be synonymous with the famous Hotel Del Coronado, but for a cheaper beach resort getaway, the Loews Coronado Bay Resort is a solid option without compromising on comfort or style. 

Situated at the end of a private 15-acre peninsula, Loews Coronado offers a hip but relaxed vibe with a luxury lean, plus excellent grounds, amenities, and scenic 360-degree bay views.

Though beach access is located across a highway and requires a free hotel shuttle, there’s plenty to enjoy on-site including the large pool deck with reserved space for both adults and kids, a spa, and a terrace bar with ample views. It’s also a bit quieter than Hotel Del, surrounded by natural elements and removed from the city bustle. Rooms are chic and in line with the high-end Loews brand.

COVID-19 procedures are available here.

Read our full hotel review of Loews Coronado Bay Resort

The US Grant, a Luxury Collection Hotel

US Grant   Trip Advisor

Book The US Grant, a Luxury Collection Hotel

Once a presidential palace dating back to 1910, The historic US Grant is a posh hotel that’s also earned a spot on the National Register of Historic Places. The 11-story building was built by the son of Ulysses S. Grant, who named it after his father. 

But it’s far from old and stuffy. Now operating as a luxury hotel, the interiors are magnificent, with large chandeliers, impressive columns, and artifacts that speak to the city’s history.

There are 270 rooms and suites providing a high-end, traditional experience not commonly replicated in the city. The hotel is also well-located near Balboa Park, the waterfront area, San Diego Zoo, and Petco Park. Luxury Collection hotels are also members of Marriott Bonvoy, offering a good opportunity to earn and redeem points.

COVID-19 procedures are available here.

The Inn at Rancho Santa Fe

Inn at Rancho Santa Fe   Marriott Bonvoy
Rooms feel cozy thanks to fireplaces and the private patio is a nice place to sit outside.

Book The Inn at Rancho Santa Fe

Set on 21 landscaped acres outside of downtown San Diego, The Inn at Rancho Santa Fe, A Tribute Portfolio Resort & Spa, is an enticing option when you want to stay near San Diego, but not in the thick of it.

This calming escape is a member of Marriott Bonvoy and feels like a Mediterranean-inspired village with red-tiled roofs, mosaic details, Spanish-Californian architecture, and bubbling fountains. Swaying palms, leafy green trees, and tall cacti add color to the well-kept grounds.

Even starter Queen rooms are large with 325 square feet, sleek bathrooms, and peaceful terraces overlooking the hotel’s polished spaces. The design is rustic but contemporary, which creates a cozy, welcoming feel, especially if you upgrade to a room with a fireplace. 

COVID-19 procedures are available here.

Hotel Del Coronado, Curio Collection by Hilton

Hotel Del Coronado - Hotel Review
Hotel Del was the direct inspiration for Walt Disney World’s Grand Floridian Resort.

Book Hotel Del Coronado

Located five miles from downtown San Diego, the Hotel del Coronado is a historic hotel and landmark that has hosted U.S. presidents, royalty, and movie stars for decades. If the Victorian-style resort looks especially familiar, that’s because it’s the direct inspiration for Walt Disney World’s Grand Floridian Resort.

Affectionately dubbed The Del or Hotel Del, the sprawling beachfront resort counts 28 acres and 757 rooms and suites throughout the massive original Victorian building, as well as a contemporary oceanfront tower, poolside cabanas, and luxury beach cottages and villas.  

The main building showcases a variety of antique details such as a vintage iron elevator that requires an operator, while the oceanfront towers, cabanas, cottages, and villas each have their own vibe and tends to be more modern and beachy.

The beach is also a draw (and attracts crowds too as it is public) with on-site water sports rentals and wellness classes.

COVID-19 procedures are available here.

Read our full hotel review of Hotel Del Coronado

Fairmont Grand Del Mar

Fairmont Grand Del Mar  Trip Advisor
Fairmont Grand Del Mar feels like a lavish Mediterranean estate.

Book the Fairmont Grand Del Mar

You might feel like you slipped away to the Spanish countryside when you first enter this sprawling five-star luxury golf and spa hideaway.

Housed on a lush 400-acre setting with Mediterranean tile work, the Fairmont Grand Del Mar appears pristine with arched windows, curved staircases, and a rose-tinted facade resembling a European palace. The hotel is also operated by the same team behind the ultra high-end Plaza Hotel in New York City.

There are 249 large, well-appointed rooms and suites, though you’ll likely spend most of your time wandering the pretty gardens or taking a dip in one (or all) of the four pools. For more activity, the resort is just a few miles from the beach, and there is also an 18-hole private golf club designed by Tom Fazio, and activities such as art classes, tennis lessons, yoga, cooking classes, and more.

Fairmont Grand Del Mar earned the distinction as a Forbes Five-Star and AAA Five Diamond luxury resort and also boasts a spa, kids club, nightlife, and dining.

COVID-19 procedures are available here.

Park Hyatt Aviara Resort, Golf Club & Spa

Adult Pool
The newly renovated Park Hyatt Aviara is an indulgent pick just outside downtown San Diego.

Book Park Hyatt Aviara Resort, Golf Club & Spa

For something more sedate than the crowded beach, or quieter than noisy downtown San Diego, head inland to the Park Hyatt Aviara Resort’s 200-acre estate in Carlsbad. The hotel overlooks golf greens, a wildlife sanctuary, and offers ample views of the ocean in the distance. The sense is overwhelmingly tranquil with well-kept common places to kick back after a few laps in the lavish pools.

A recent renovation delivered on well-appointed rooms, and a newly revamped grandiose pool has separate areas for adults and children. 

COVID-19 procedures are available here.

Read our full hotel review of Park Hyatt Aviara Resort, Golf Club & Spa

FAQ: San Diego hotels

Where should I stay in San Diego?

That depends on what you want to do. Stay downtown in neighborhoods like the Gaslamp Quarter, Little Italy, or Embarcadero if you want to sight see with a central, urban base.

If you plan to spend most of your time on the sand, look to coastal communities in Pacific Beach, Ocean Beach, La Jolla, or Del Mar. Drive 25 miles up the 101 and you’ll find yourself in popular beach towns like Cardiff and Encinitas.

Or, for a beach base with easy access to downtown, consider Coronado Island. 

If you want to revolve your trip around theme parks and attractions, you should consider a hotel’s proximity to places like the San Diego Zoo or Legoland in Carlsbad.

What is there to do in San Diego?

San Diego has a little bit of everything with a robust city center, military base, rich history, and beautiful beaches.

Watch surfers, take a dip in the ocean, take advantage of the nightlife in Gaslamp, stroll around Coronado Island, or check out the seals in La Jolla. There is also a major sports stadium, the San Diego Zoo, and beautiful parks such as Torrey Pines. 

What is the best time to visit San Diego?

San Diego enjoys warm temperatures and sunny weather for most of the year. As such, there isn’t a major off-season when prices change dramatically. For nice, mild weather, consider a winter visit. However, when temps soar in summer, you might just see cheaper hotel prices.

Is it safe to stay in a hotel?

According to the CDC, fully vaccinated people can safely travel domestically.

Hotels are open during COVID-19 and while you’re more likely to encounter other people in common spaces such as lobbies, check-in desks, restaurants, and pools, experts say that with added caution, it is safe to stay in a hotel

More of the best hotels in California

Figueroa Los Angeles Hotel Review
Read the original article on Business Insider

The best iPad cases in 2021 for every situation

When you buy through our links, Insider may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more.

Logitech combo touch keyboard case ipad
The Logitech combo touch keyboard case is one of the best iPad cases you can buy.

  • An iPad case should bring protection, style, and new functionality to your tablet.
  • Our favorite cases are made by ESR, Logitech, and Zugu among others.
  • Remember to look for cases that are compatible with the iPad model you own.

Purchasing an iPad is an investment, and one of the best ways to protect that investment is by pairing your iPad with a case.

But choosing the right case isn’t always simple. There are tons of options available to suit any style and need, whether you’re looking for something sleek and minimal or military-grade protection.

The best cases are both stylish and protective without adding too much bulk to your bag. We’ve collected and tested over a dozen cases to find the best iPad case for every budget and situation.

Here are the best iPad cases of 2021:

The best overall iPad cases

iPad Pro 11 2021 Ascend Trifold Hard Case in black

ESR’s lineup of iPad cases offer a variety of  styles, colors, and protection at affordable prices.

ESR offers something for everyone when it comes to iPad cases, whether it’s extra protection to go along with your Apple Smart Cover, full coverage, or a case with a built-in Apple Pencil holder. Few casemakers have this many options for price and protection. 

I’m a big fan of maximum protection, so the Sentry Magnetic Kickstand Case is one of my favorites. It features a 2-millimeter thick back cover, raised edges around the screen for maximum drop protection, and an adjustable magnetic kickstand with seven different viewing angles. 

The version for the 10.2-inch iPad costs $30.99, while the enhanced 11-inch iPad Pro models cost $68.99 – which makes this one of the most expensive cases in ESR’s lineup. The company also offers a Rugged Protection Bundle for the 11-inch iPad Pro for $70.34  which includes the Sentry case, along with a reinforced tempered-glass screen protector.

While the Sentry cases only come in two colors, many of the lower-priced cases come in multiple colorways including blue, black, pink, and gray.  The majority of ESR’s cases are made with TPU – a type of polyurethane plastic which provides a thin layer of rubber-like protection. This is normally enough to protect against bumps, scratches, and scrapes, but probably wouldn’t do so well in a bigger drop. 

The more rugged cases – like the Sentry– are made from polymer, which should do a better job at keeping your iPad safe from unfortunate mishaps.

ESR cases might not be the fanciest or the most protective on the market, but they are well-made and offer a great deal of value for those looking to find the perfect case for their new iPad. 

Worth a look:

Ascend Trifold Hard Case (small)Slim Rebound Case (small)Sentry Protective Case (small)
The best iPad cases from Apple

Apple Magic Keyboard case for iPad in black

Apple’s own cases emphasize style and function, but often fall short on protection. 

Apple products usually come at a premium, and that’s no different with its iPad cases. Apple’s cases are expensive, but also sleek and functional. 

The $49 Smart Cover is a thin piece of polyurethane that protects the device’s display and connects magnetically to the iPad. It comes in a variety of colors and can be folded into different positions to create a stand for reading, viewing, and drawing. The design is simple and effective, but leaves the back and sides of the iPad  unprotected.

Those looking for all-around protection may want to consider the Smart Folio, which is similar in appearance to the Smart cover, but is made from a single piece of polyurethane that protects both the front and back of the iPad. The Smart Folio starts at $79, and is light, sleek, and perfect for those looking for an attractive case to protect against scrapes and bumps. 

Apple’s most impressive case is the $299  Magic Keyboard for the iPad Pro and iPad Air. This keyboard case and trackpad combination transform the iPad into a viable laptop replacement. The case utilizes a clever magnetic design to create a one-piece stand and keyboard that is both thin and highly functional. 

The only downside to the Magic Keyboard – aside from its high starting price – is that it lacks any protection on the sides of the iPad. There are other worthy keyboard cases on the market that address this problem, but few are as well-made as the Magic Keyboard.

Worth a look:

Magic Keyboard for iPad Pro 11-inch and iPad Air (small)Smart Folio for iPad Air (4th Gen) (small)Smart Cover for iPad (8th Gen) (small)
The best iPad keyboard case

Logitech combo touch keyboard case ipad

The Logitech Combo Touch offers full tablet protection, backlit keys, a great typing experience, and is more affordable than Apple’s Magic Keyboard. 

The $199.99 Logitech Combo Touch lacks the clever design of Apple’s Magic Keyboard, but offers a similar experience while fully protecting the iPad itself. 

The Combo Touch features two parts – a protective back case, and a removable keyboard and trackpad that connects via the smart connector and also functions as a front cover. The back case folds out into a kickstand with plenty of viewing and writing angles. A magnet holds the kickstand shut when it’s not in use to maintain its flat back. 

The addition of the kickstand means that the back of the case is thick and protective – if slightly bulky. The Combo Touch adds heft to the iPad, but it is a small price to pay for such a versatile case. 

Typing on the Combo Touch is effective and fun. The keys offer a good amount of travel and are perfect for those who don’t mind portable keyboards. I found the keyboard to be a perfect size for my small hands, but those with larger hands might find it a bit cramped. I wish the trackpad was slightly taller, but I found it perfectly usable at its current size.

The gestures on the trackpad worked well, and I had no problem zipping around my iPad without ever touching the display. The addition of backlighting on the keyboard made this case a great nighttime companion, as I could clearly see the keys as I typed in the dark. 

The type cover is easy to pull on and off, which helps to make the Logitech Combo Touch great for typing, reading, drawing, and viewing. It comes in either Oxford Gray or Sand. 

Worth a look:

Combo Touch (small)
The best iPad case for protection

otterbox ipad case

OtterBox cases offer a huge amount of protection without adding too much bulk.

OtterBox is known for its protective cases, and the company’s iPad offerings don’t disappoint. OtterBox makes traditional folio cases like the Symmetry Series and the Symmetry Series 360, but it’s the Defender Series Pro that really stands out from the pack. 

The $89.95 Defender Series Pro offers the most over-the-top protection that I’ve ever seen in an iPad case. It features three layers of protection– an inner thin plastic covering over the front and back of the iPad, followed by a rubber slipcover, topped off by a hard plastic back that acts as a stand and display protector. 

This is not the easiest case to install and remove – in fact, I needed a video tutorial to figure out the processes. But my iPad seemed invincible once it was inside. Of course, it’s hard to guarantee that the Defender Series Pro will protect your iPad in every situation. But my iPad did survive a 4-foot drop from my bed to the floor without a scratch. 

My biggest concern with the Defender Series Pro lies in its hard plastic outer shell. The shell grips securely to the front iPad for protection, but also features a collapsible hinge in the center that acts as a stand for viewing and writing. 

This design is interesting, but ultimately feels clunky. There is no mechanism to clip the case into the stand; instead, the iPad rests awkwardly between the raised corners of the outer case and raised middle hinge – leaving the tablet less secure than I would want. 

The Defender Series Pro only comes in black and certainly isn’t the most fashionable case. But what it lacks in style, it makes up for in protection. 

Worth a look: 

iPad Pro (11-inch) (3rd gen) Defender Series Pro Case (small)iPad Air (4th gen) Symmetry Series 360 Case (small)iPad (8th and 7th gen) Symmetry Series Folio Case (small)
The best iPad case for watching video

Zugu iPad Pro case in black

Zugu cases feature great all-around protection and come with a magnetic kickstand that offers eight different viewing angles. 

Zugu doesn’t make a lot of different types of cases, but the ones they do make have some of the best viewing angles on the market. 

The Zugu Muse Case, which starts at $49.99, is made out of a thick layer of TPU plastic surrounded by a polycarbonate shell for enhanced drop protection. It features raised edges, a grooved folio sleep and wake cover, and a microfiber lining. There’s a collapsible kickstand on the back of the case that magnetically connects to the grooves on the cover, creating eight viewing angles for reading, watching, and typing. 

Other case manufactures have emulated Zugu’s design, but the strength of the magnetic holds makes this case stand out. No matter what surface I put it on, the Zugu case stays locked into the correct viewing angle. It performs equally as well on a lumpy bean bag chair as it does on a hard table. I can even lightly shake the iPad without detaching the kickstand – though a slightly harder shake breaks the spell and releases the front of the case. 

The Zugu is also incredibly durable. I’ve used it every day for three years and have yet to see any wear and tear. It has been dropped, jostled, shoved into packed bags, and covered in pet hair, but it still works as well now as it did when I got it. I’ve also streamed thousands of hours of content while using this case and have always found just the right angle for every viewing position. 

The only downside to the Zugu is that it adds some bulk to my iPad. Despite the fact that it comes in up to five different colors, it’s not the best-looking case you’ll find. 

Worth a look: 

iPad Pro 12.9 (5th Gen) Case (small)
Our methodology

We tested iPad cases on a variety of criteria to find our best picks. The quality and durability of the cases were judged based on the following factors: 

  • The build quality of the materials used in the case
  • How easy it is to put on and remove the case
  • How easy it is to clean the case
  • How well the case withstands jostling in a packed bag

To test durability, we placed each case in a bag filled with books, notebooks, and accessories. We then walked approximately five blocks with the bag, before removing the iPad and checking for scratches, dents, or marks on the case or the device itself. 

We also dropped each case approximately 4-feet from a bed onto a carpeted floor and inspected the case and iPad for damage. 

Additionally, we evaluated keyboard cases by the accuracy of the trackpad and comfort of the typing experience. 

Life can get messy – which is why we wanted to test how easy it is to clean the cases. To do this, we enlisted the help of our enthusiastic long-haired dog, Toby.  We used the cases to gently pet his fur, then attempted to remove any accumulation from the case following manufacturing guidelines.

What to consider when buying an iPad case

Compatibility

The most important aspect of buying an iPad case is making sure that it fits the specific iPad model that you own. It might be tempting to hand on to the old case for your previous iPad  when buying a newer model. Although many iPads share a similar design, their dimensions are often different. That’s why it’s important to buy a case for the specific model you own.

Apple currently sells five different iPad models:

If you’re not sure which model you own, open your iPad’s settings menu and tap “General.” Choose “About” and look at the field that says “Model Name.”

Features

The next question you’ll want to ask yourself is how you intend to use your case. Do you want a sleeve that’s as slim as possible just for keeping your iPad safe from scratches? Or do you often find yourself propping up your iPad while watching movies and cooking? If so, you’ll probably want an iPad case with an integrated kickstand. And then, of course, there are keyboard cases designed for those who take notes on their iPad. Think carefully about the scenarios in which you use your iPad the most before buying a case. 

Budget

Aside from buying the right case for the iPad model you own, budget is the most critical factor to consider. Basic cases can cost as cheap as $15 or less, while more sophisticated cases like those with keyboards, kickstands, and extra durable designs can cost $70 or more. There are also plenty of in-between options in the $30-$50 range that offer standard protection. The best keyboard cases, however, will usually cost around $100 or more. 

Read the original article on Business Insider

Take a look inside Pottery Barn and Airstream’s new luxury $145,500 trailer, which sleeps 5 people and has a solid oak dining table

Pottery Barn Airstream trailer
The Airstream trailer comes decked out with Pottery Barn furnishings.

  • Pottery Barn and Airstream are selling a luxury $145,500 travel trailer.
  • The companies worked together on the design, which comes with Pottery Barn hardware and furnishings.
  • The trailer can sleep up to five, and comes with either twin beds or a queen bed. Take a look inside.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.
Pottery Barn and Airstream are selling a 28-foot travel trailer, with prices starting at $145,500. It’s on sale at dealers across the US.

Pottery Barn Airstream trailer

Source: Airstream

The companies describe the Pottery Barn Special Edition Travel Trailer as “the perfect blend of comfort and style.”

Pottery Barn Airstream trailer

The two companies worked together on the design, which incorporates Pottery Barn hardware and furnishings into a trailer made by Airstream. Furniture includes a custom-made sofa inspired by Pottery Barn’s Big Sur Collection …

Pottery Barn Airstream trailer

Read more: Self-driving leader Argo AI’s CEO explains how his new deal with Lyft helps the startup clear a critical hurdle: getting real customers into cars

… and a solid oak hardwood table. It also comes with a load of accessories, like a 16-piece mason stoneware dinnerware set, and an outdoor folding table and
armchair set.

Pottery Barn Airstream trailer

Soft furnishings are provided, too. These include curtains, bedding, and cushions.

Pottery Barn Airstream trailer

It also comes with an outdoor hanging table that you can attach to the window …

Pottery Barn Airstream trailer

… as well as what the companies describe as a an “airline-style” table that stows away in the arm of the sofa.

Pottery Barn Airstream trailer

The trailer can sleep up to five, and is available with either twin beds or a queen bed.

Pottery Barn Airstream trailer
Read the original article on Business Insider

A day in the life of a Twitch executive in Australia, who takes breaks to play Frisbee with his dog and sets aside an hour of ‘old man time’ with no screens before bed

twitch exec lewis mitchell sits at home desk with headphones on
Mitchell, who’s been at Twitch for five years, works from home in the Wollongong area, about an hour south of Sydney.

  • Lewis Mitchell is head of content for the Asia-Pacific region at Twitch, a live-streaming platform for gamers.
  • In between meetings with Twitch employees around the world, he throws a Frisbee for his dog, Beanie.
  • In the last hour before bed, which he calls his “old man time,” Mitchell avoids screens and reads books.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.
Lewis Mitchell is the head of content for the Asia-Pacific region at Twitch, the live-streaming platform that draws more than 30 million visitors every day, according to the company.

twitch executive lewis mitchell smiles with arms folded against light gray backdrop

Based in Sydney, Australia, he oversees a team of three people.

Mitchell — who’s in his mid-30s and moved to Australia from England when he was 15 — took a somewhat roundabout journey to working at Twitch. He originally wanted to be an animator but decided to go into coding instead, spending a few years as a developer before changing gears and going into radio broadcasting. 

As a gamer himself, Mitchell had been aware of Twitch, which was launched in 2011. But it was when he discovered Twitch Plays Pokémon — a social experiment on the live-streaming platform where more than a million players controlled a single character — that he knew he had to try and get a job there.

“It was the first time I’d seen a digital platform that was content-based around video games, and I’m just like, I have to work here,” Mitchell said.

He joined Twitch in May 2016 and started his current role as head of content while Sydney was in lockdown this spring.

Mitchell works from his home in the Wollongong area, about an hour south of Sydney. Here’s a look at his daily routine.

8 a.m. to 9 a.m: Mitchell starts his day drinking coffee on his balcony while he scrolls through Twitter, LinkedIn, Reddit, and news apps to catch up on current affairs.

twitch exec lewis mitchell sits on chair swing on porch while drinking coffee and checking phone

Some “noisy but awesome” Kookaburras — a type of kingfisher bird native to Australia and New Guinea — often sit in the Jacaranda tree nearby, he said.

Mitchell said he’s appreciated being able to get more sleep while working from home in the pandemic. 

“If left to my own devices, I would absolutely be waking up at 11 o’clock and going to bed at like 1:00 in the morning,” he said. “But having that little bit of extra time has been really helpful.”

9 a.m. to 11 a.m: His work day kicks off with meetings with Twitch employees in the US.

twitch exec lewis mitchell sits at home desk with headphones on
Mitchell, who’s been at Twitch for five years, works from home in the Wollongong area, about an hour south of Sydney.

“I’ll grab insights of high-level decisions during these meetings, then take them back to the APAC teams,” he said.

During the pandemic, Twitch has seen record numbers. In June 2020, the number of people streaming on Twitch in the Asia-Pacific region was double the year prior, according to the company. Last year, the total minutes viewed on Twitch grew to 1 trillion minutes.

11 a.m. to 1 p.m: Mitchell has a couple of hours of team meetings with the Asia-Pacific group and one-on-ones with country leads.

screenshot of google hangouts meeting

Twitch has 1,800 corporate employees around the world, according to a spokesperson for the company.

2 p.m. to 2:30 p.m: In the afternoon, he takes a break to take his Goldendoodle for a walk. Her name is Old Bean, but he and his wife just call her Beanie.

a hand holds a purple frisbee with a white dog in the background

“She loves a Frisbee, but hasn’t mastered the art of dropping it yet, so we take two Frisbee’s for the bribery,” Mitchell said.

2:30 p.m. to 3 p.m: When they get back, Mitchell makes a sandwich for lunch – “usually in the presence of a hopeful dog looking for cheese,” he said.

twitch exec lewis mitchell makes a sandwich for lunch while his dog looks on

3 p.m. to 5 p.m: He has more meetings in the afternoon, this time with the heads of departments in Asia Pacific to talk about how to improve the region for Twitch creators.

twitch exec lewis mitchell stretches

During these meetings, Mitchell stands and does some stretches.

Working from home in the pandemic, Mitchell said he’s learned the importance of investing in a good chair: He used to use gaming chairs but recently splurged on a Herman Miller office chair.

“I will say so far, it’s felt amazing,” he said. “My back is not hurting anywhere near as much.”

5 p.m. to 7 p.m: Mitchell spends the last couple hours of his day catching up with streamers and going through emails.

twitch exec lewis mitchell works on his computer

“I find it important to make sure I’m up-to-date with the type of content and tools people are utilizing the most to engage,” he said.

7 p.m. to 7:30 p.m: Mitchell fits in a workout, either a jog outside or in the small home gym he put together during the pandemic.

a home gym with weight lifting and treadmill

7:30 p.m: For dinner, he makes some burritos.

view of meat cooking on a stove with a bowl of vegetables on the side

After dinner, Mitchell spends time with his wife and they watch TV together. “Highly recommend ‘The Hour,'” he said.

From about 8:30 p.m. to 11:30 p.m, he finishes going through some emails and does any reading he needs to do for the rest of the week. 

11:30 p.m. to 12:30 a.m: Mitchell calls this his “old man time,” when he avoids looking at screens for the last hour before bed.

twitch exec lewis mitchell sits in chair reading while wearing bathrobe and sweats

“I’ll get into my slippers and dressing gown, and sit in my old man chair,” he said.

He recently finished the works of fantasy writer Robin Hobb and has also been reading about stoic philosophy.

Read the original article on Business Insider

The best online sales and deals happening now, including Grove, Spanx, and Nordstrom Anniversary Sale

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best online sales deals

Table of Contents: Masthead Sticky

We rounded up the best sales and deals happening online today, including details on Nordstrom’s annual Anniversary Sale, plus discounts at Patagonia, Everlane, and Spanx.

Deals in this story are subject to change throughout the day. The prices listed reflect the deal at the time of publication. For even more deals and savings across the web, check out our roundup of the best deals from Amazon and what our team is shopping for during the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale.

The best sales and discounts happening right now

Get a free cleaning set from Grove

grove collab cleaning essentials lineup in front of a blue background with the beyond plastic logo

Join the Grove Collaborative now

Grove sells essentials that are healthy for you and your environment, from cleaning supplies to skincare. Right now, if you spend at least $20 on an order from the store, you can claim a free essentials set of your choice, including a Mrs. Meyer’s set valued at over $50.

cleaning set (medium)
Save up to 70% off during the Nordstrom Anniversary sale

Nordstrom Anniversary Sale 2021

Shop the Nordstrom Anniversary sale now

Nordstrom’s huge Anniversary sale is live now through Sunday, August 8. This is the luxury department store’s most popular sale of the year. During the sale, you can save big on clothing, plus home goods, bedding, and kitchenware.

Breast of Both Worlds Reversible Wireless Bra (medium)City Knee High Boot (medium)
Save on select Spanx designs

spanx athleisure model leggings

Shop the Spanx sale now.

Through August 8, Spanx is holding a big sale featuring deep discounts, and a wide variety of apparel and underwear is included in the sale. The brand makes flattering designs, from bras to denim, that we’ve loved over the years

Faux Leather Side Stripe Leggings (medium, Preferred: Spanx)Power Conceal-Her open-bust, mid-thigh bodysuit (medium, Preferred: Spanx)
Get up to 50% off at Patagonia

Patagonia

Shop the Patagonia web specials sale now

Patagonia is a sustainable outdoor clothing brand that boasts a huge variety of gear for men, women, and children. To get discounted prices on jackets, pants, sweaters, and more, shopping through the web specials section will save you money on some of Patagonia’s most popular styles from last season. 

Women’s Radalie Insulated Parka (medium, Preferred: Patagonia)Men’s Organic Cotton Canvas Jacket (medium)
Get up to $50 off at Tushy

tushy bidet attached to a toilet with a beach santa riding a wave out of it

Shop the Tushy Hole-idays in July Sale now

If you’re looking to snag a new bidet, Tushy is holding a big sale featuring up to $50 off sitewide. Its toilet attachments are hygienic and eco-friendly; they can even save you the money you’d otherwise spend on toilet paper. Through July 31, you can get $15 off $100, $30 off $150, or $50 off $200+. 

Spa 3.0 (medium, Preferred: Tushy)Classic 3.0 (medium)
Get up to 60% off at Everlane

Everlane

Shop the Everlane Summer Sale now.

Looking for a chance to update your wardrobe? Everlane’s huge summer sale is as good an opportunity as any. During the event, nearly 1,000 different styles for men and women are up to 60% off, including underwear as low as $6 and t-shirts as low as $9. For shopping inspiration, check out our roundup of the best deals here.

The ReNew Sport Sandal (medium)The Perform Legging (medium)
Get up to 60% off at Athleta

athleta sports bras lineup

Shop the Athleta Semi-Annual sale now.

If you’ve been looking for a chance to refresh your athletic wear, Athleta’s Semi-Annual sale is as good a time as any. Right now, you can knock up to 60% off a huge array of women’s and girl’s apparel including tops, leggings, joggers, and sports bras. Sales from the brand don’t come by often, so it’s worth checking out if you’re in the market for some athleisure. 

Malibu Printed One Piece Swimsuit (medium)Quest Jogger (medium)
Save with Chewy Summer Deals

chewy athleisure bulldog in bed

Shop Chewy’s deals now.

Chewy is known for its discounts, and right now it’s offering some solid price drops on our picks for your furry friend. From dog flea treatment to cat litter, several brands we trust are included in the sale.

Plus for Dogs (6-Pack) (medium, Preferred: Chewy)Calming Diffuser for Cats (medium, Preferred: Chewy)
Get up to 30% off The North Face at Backcountry

the north face holiday facebook post

Shop Backcountry’s The North Face sale now.

Backcountry is holding another great sale, this time featuring up to 30% off The North Face. The discounts include gear for every season, including tees, backpacks, jackets, and more.

Women’s Balham Down Jacket (medium)Hydra 26L Backpack (medium)
The best deals and sales available now

Amazon echo buds sitting in the case on a desk
Amazon

  • Anthropologie: Get an extra 25% off sale items.
  • Bare necessities: Get up to 40% off intimates and up to 70% off swimsuits. 
  • Bed, Bath, and Beyond: Get 20% off all college essentials.
  • Cara: Get 70% off all swimsuits. 
  • HBO Max: Get $25 off an annual plan after adding the promotion to your American Express card. 
  • Headspace: Get 50% off your first year.
  • Lo and Sons: Get up to 50% off select bags through July 31.
  • Madewell: Get an extra 30% off sale items with promo code SALEONSALE
  • Mirror: Get $150 off your Mirror plus free shipping and installation with promo code JULY400 through July 31.
  • Nike: Get up to 50% off select styles through August 7.
  • Olay: Get 25% off sitewide. 
  • Plants.com: Get 20% off plants for the office with promo code OFFICE20
  • Sur la Table: Get up to 75% off kitchenware. 
  • Verishop: Get up to 70% off apparel, home, and more. 
  • Winc: Get four bottles of wine for $30. 

Read more about how the Insider Reviews team evaluates deals and why you should trust us.

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The 13 coziest pairs of slippers we’ve tested

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Best slippers for women 4x3
  • If you’re working from home, your go-to pair of shoes are now most likely your slippers.
  • While slippers come in all shapes and sizes, yours should make your feet feel cozy and cushioned.
  • We’ve put together a list of 13 pairs of slippers that we’ve found to be most reliable.
  • If you’re looking for men’s sizing, check out our guide to the best men’s slippers.

The ongoing pandemic has changed many of our work uniforms in a big way. Many have traded in their loafers, flats, and heels for a pair of slippers that fit much better with this new lifestyle. But choosing the right pair is important. They’re meant to be comfortable, after all.

Of course material is essential to maximum comfort for your feet, but so is the design. Do your feet feel supported as you sit at your desk, move around the kitchen, and go about your other daily tasks? We’re here to help you choose by spotlighting 13 pairs of slippers that tick off all of our boxes.

Click to jump to the best women’s slippers of 2021:

The best moccasin slippers

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L.L.Bean Wicked Good Moccasins

Best slippers for women L.L.Bean Wicked Good Moccasins 4x3

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For many people, “slipper” is synonymous with shearling-lined, suede moccasins like the Wicked Good Moccasins from L.L.Bean.

Sizing options: 5-11

I got these slippers a few Christmases ago, and they’re just the best for keeping my feet nice and toasty in the winter. They’re shearling-lined, so they’re perfectly cozy to wear with or without socks, and they’ve held their shape nicely after plenty of indoor wear. The laces often come undone, but that’s about the only flaw I can come up with for them. They’re affordable at $79 (you can get them even cheaper during sales), they’re durable, and the women’s version comes in seven great colors and two widths. I’ve got the Neutral shade and my size 8 fits true to size. Ellen Hoffman, executive editor

J.Crew Suede faux-shearling moccasin slippers

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The poly faux-fur lining of the J.Crew Suede faux-shearling moccasin slippers gives them a fuzzy warmth that lasts. 

Sizing options: 5-12

After trying many different slippers, from slip-ons to fuzzy cloud-like ones, these have quickly become my favorite. They’re easy to slip on, and they have great grip so I never slip and slide when walking on tile or hardwood floors. The fuzzy lining keeps my toes warm and has stayed soft, even after wearing these slippers every day for a month. They fit very true to size and are an absolute steal for the price. Paige DiFiore, lifestyle and entertainment editor for Insider Life

UpWest Fireside Slipper

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The UpWest Fireside Slipper stands out with its ability to be worn outdoors along with its thoughtful, hand-stitched details.  

Sizing options: 6-10

I got these slippers and a new puppy around the same time, and I was sure she’d eventually rip them to shreds. But they’ve held up to her fascination with the sturdy ties and shearling lining. Plus, they have a rubber sole, so I can wear them for quick trips outside during potty training. Bartie Scott, small business editor 

The best slip-on slippers

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Ugg Tasman Slippers

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With a plush interior and a lightweight, durable outsole, the Ugg Tasman Slippers are a comfy choice you won’t regret wearing outside.

Sizing options: 5-12

While Ugg has a lot of slipper options, I love the Tasmans for their versatility. The brand’s proprietary wool insole is seriously plush — it feels like you’re always standing on top of a luxurious rug. This pair also comes with a particularly durable yet lightweight outsole, making them a great choice for wearing outdoors. Because they’re slip-ons and keep your whole foot covered, these are ideal for just throwing on with a pair of jeans or leggings when you’re in a rush to get out of the house. The color offerings include chestnut and black, which both match pretty much everything. Remi Rosmarin, former commerce reporter

Everlane The ReNew Slippers

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Cozy without being overly warm, Everlane’s The ReNew Slipper is perfect for folks who typically don’t love a slipper.

Sizing options: 5-11

For the longest time, I was a socks-only person. But Everlane’s The ReNew Slipper has turned me into a slipper person, a feat I didn’t think possible. Unlike most indoor footwear, the ReNew Slipper isn’t impossibly fuzzy and warm. The lining is made from a low-pile, recycled polyester that feels like a shearling, so it keeps your feet cozy without causing them to sweat. 

The sturdy rubber outsole helps to support my feet and the nylon outer fabric is also clutch. It’s easy to spot-clean, so should your morning coffee splash on your feet, you won’t be left with a stain. The ReNew Slippers are the coziest slippers I’ve ever worn. And the chic, quilted pattern on the exterior makes them look chic, not hokey. The one drawback? The trim isn’t elastic, so if you have a high instep, it might be a little tight at first. It took me a day of wear to break them in, and now they’re super comfortable. Maria Del Russo, style and beauty guides editor

Ugg Coquette Slippers

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Product Card (small, Preferred: Zappos)

Versatility shines through with the Ugg Coquette Slippers, which can be worn both indoors and outdoors thanks to the Treadlite by Ugg outsole. 

Sizing options: 5-12

These days, I’m living in two things: Black leggings and Ugg slippers. My fluffy Uggs are the first thing I slide on in the morning, and I wear them right up until the moment I’m climbing into bed. I love how cozy and warm and they are, but I also appreciate how functional the rubber lug sole is. I can wear these to check the mail or grab a package without thinking twice. The shearling lining will wear out eventually, but I don’t mind knowing I’ve gotten my full use out of this pair. Even at $120, the cost-per-wear comes out to basically nothing. Ashley Phillips, style and beauty editor

The best slipper shoes

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Birkenstock Boston Shearling Suede Leather

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Birkenstock’s signature cork footbed gets even comfier with shearling lining in the brand’s Boston Shearling Suede Leather Clogs

Sizing options: 4-12.5; these also come in regular/wide and medium/narrow options 

I was a big Ugg slipper person until the pandemic. I quickly realized that with daily wear, the shearling on the inside wore out so quickly that the slippers became too big to wear comfortably. So I purchased these as a replacement. After five months of wearing them, not only are they still the right size, but they are also warm, comfortable, and not at all worn out. I almost never take them off at this point.Jana Meron, SVP programmatic & data strategy

L.LBean Wicked Good Slippers

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The L.LBean Wicked Good Slippers come up to your ankle to keep your whole foot warm and secure in cold weather.

Sizing options: 5-11

The shearling in these slippers is moisture-wicking, so even though your feet may get a bit sweaty due to the limited breathability of the suede, they will still stay relatively dry. The shearling does get matted over years of wear, losing some of its initial fluffiness, but the integrity of the overall slipper has lasted very well. You can’t slip them on — they require at least one hand to assist you in pulling them over your heel — but they’re not going to fall off your feet as you rush around the house either. The Wicked Good Slippers don’t have a rubber outsole, so they are indoor only. The leather sole isn’t textured, and though I’ve never found them to be slippery, you may want to be careful on tile surfaces. Michelle Ullman, freelance writer

Margaux The Slipper

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Margaux’s The Slipper is the cozy sister of the brand’s iconic ballet flats, and adds a touch of chic to your slipper collection. 

Sizing options: 3-13; thanks to the elastic, these can fit a little snug, so you might want to size up.

Given my aversion to slippers, I spent the early part of my time working from home still wearing shoes around the house. It helped me feel a little more put-together. So when I saw The Slipper, which is the perfect ballet flat/slipper hybrid, I was thrilled. They look like Margaux’s ballet flats, complete with the iconic bow above the toes, but are outfitted with a plush sole and Mongolian cashmere. They’re definitely one of the more luxe pairs of slippers I’ve ever worn. But considering they’re some of the only “shoes” I’m wearing these days, I’d say I deserve it. — Maria Del Russo, style and beauty guides editor

The best open-toe slippers

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Acorn Spa Slide Slippers

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The Acorn Spa Slide Slippers transport you to a spa with their soft terry material and multilayer Cloud Contour footbed. 

Sizing options: S-XL; plus, wide options for each size 

It wasn’t until the pandemic that I realized I needed new slippers that could actually last. I landed on the Acorn Women’s Spa Slide Slippers because they looked cozy — and they had the word “spa” in the name. After having owned a pair for nearly five months now, I can definitely vouch for its comfort and durability. These slippers are made of terry, a fabric you can find at many spas. And unlike other slippers that eventually flatten out and lose their support, this pair has footbeds that hold shape well. Plus, the velcro straps can easily be adjusted if you want a wider, or narrower, fit. I’ve also found the rubber outsoles to be especially sturdy and slip-free, which is handy for when I’m moving around the kitchen or rushing down the stairs. My size small slippers fit me perfectly and I’m a true size 6.Katie Decker-Jacoby, style & beauty reviews fellow

Ugg Fluff Yeah Slide

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The Instagram-famous Ugg Fluff Yeah Slides actually live up to the hype, thanks to their cozy interior and sturdy rubber sole.

Sizing options: 5-12

Like all Uggs, these are made with soft sheepskin. In fact, the sheepskin covers the entire shoe, save for the elastic back and sturdy rubber platform sole. That elastic back is actually pretty handy for folks who like an open-back slipper but find they slip off. And the open toe and backless silhouette ensure your feet don’t overheat — even with all that sheepskin. My favorite part, though, has to be how supportive they are for my feet. The platform is lightweight but solid, and it makes for slippers that don’t make my feet ache after extended wear. Plus, since the Fluff Yeah are technically slides, they’re more than strong enough to be worn out — even around the corner to the market. Maria Del Russo, style and beauty guides editor

Parlovable Faux Fur Slippers

Best slippers for women Parlovable Faux Fur Slippers 4x3

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The Parlovable Faux Fur Slippers make your feet feel – and look – like clouds thanks to the faux fur upper, velvet lining, and memory foam cushion.   

Sizing options: 7-10

I struggle with splurging on slippers because I know they won’t last me too long with how often I wear them. This pair from Amazon is the perfect compromise. And thanks to quarantine, they get a lot of usage. It’s a reasonably priced and comfortable buy. They fit me true to size and never slip off my feet. I’ve thrown them in the wash a few times, and it restores the slipper’s fluff. The memory foam lasted me for about five to seven months until I decided to replace them with a new pair, which wasn’t a hard sell considering the price. Jacqueline Saguin, style & beauty reviews fellow

Coface Plush Flip Flop Slippers

Best slippers for women Coface Plush Flip Flop Slippers 4x3

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Pamper your feet as they sink into the warm and wide toe Coface Plush Flip Flop Slippers.

Sizing options: 5-10

Because there’s a bin in my closet specifically devoted to fuzzy socks of all kinds, I’ve never been much of a slipper person. When I received these for Christmas, however, the game changed — and I’ve been practically living in them. They are my go-to footwear when I hop out of the shower or if I’m lounging around the house. The plush material provides a fluffy mat for your feet with a wide toe for both stability and comfort. I have the hot pink ones (to channel Elle Woods, of course), but they come in a variety of colors and make great gifts for a spa lover or anyone who gravitates toward fleece and fluff (a.k.a. me). And, for less than $20, they are a steal. Victoria Giardina, Buying Guides Fellow

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