My Favorite Things

I swear by all of these products! I wouldn’t list them here if I didn’t honestly adore them, and I’d recommend them even if I didn’t get paid for endorsing them (which is the case for some of these).

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Contents

Skin & Hair Care

Briotech Topical Skin Spray

Briotech Topical Skin Spray is one of my favorite skincare products. When my eczema surprised me by flaring up after many years and I had a seriously lichenized patch of skin. My doctor prescribed the usual steroid cream from my doctor, but I decided to try Briotech first — I’m so glad I did! The Briotech spray relieved the itchiness of the lichenification and eczema immediately, and after a few weeks of regular application, both issues resolved. Now I use it for everything!

Chagrin Valley Soap & Salve

Photo by Chagrin Valley Soap & Salve

I order almost all my skincare products from this company, and my skincare routine has changed for the better. My skin is healthier and my eczema is under control, in part thanks to this wonderful organic, handmade soap. Plus, last time I checked their website, their packaging is 99% plastic-free.

Get $5 off your first purchase at Chagrin Valley Soap & Salve!

Viori

Photo of shampoo bar by Viori

I have struggled with dandruff for decades. I’ve tried every commercially available dandruff shampoo and handmade organic shampoo without results, so I gave up. Then I tried Viori, all natural shampoo bars made from Longsheng rice, and was pleasantly surprised by the improvement after only a few weeks of use, and my hair feels soft and moisturized.

Get 10% off your first purchase at Viori.

Home & Household

Branch Basics

Photo by Branch Basics

I was skeptical of this cleaning agent because it promised to do way too much for it to be realistically effective. It was too good to be true: non-toxic (even safe for cats), use it to clean the dishes, toilet, tub, carpets, laundry — even you and your pets. How could one cleaner do all that? But it really does. It seems expensive at first, but it lasts a long time, simplifies cleaning, and reduces plastic waste.

Get $10 off your first purchase at Branch Basics.

Butcher Box

I’ve been ordering from Butcher Box for years for high quality, humanely raised meats. It takes some time to get used to cooking from frozen, but once I got used to it, I found it much easier to meal plan with Butcher Box.

Get $30 off your first box at Butcher Box.

Saatva

Photo by author

We upgraded our bed to an adjustable split king and changed out all our bedding. The buying process with Saatva was wonderful, and the unboxing experience with Saatva’s all-year comforter was lovely (photo on the left).

(I’ll post a full review of the Saatva items we purchased in a few months when we have had time with them.)

Get $100 when you purchase at Saatva.

Who Gives A Crap

Photo by Who Gives A Crap

I never would have thought I’d be recommending a specific brand of toilet paper, but such is the life when you’re trying to live with intention. This company makes toilet paper out of 100% recycled paper, and they’re plastic-free!

I was skeptical when they said it lasts longer than normal toilet paper, but I tested the claim, and they were right: My first order for our 2-person household was November 2020 and my next order was July 2021.

Get $10 off your first purchase at Who Gives A Crap.

Japanese Learning

Japanesepod101.com

Learn Japanese with JapanesePod101.com

Especially when I was learning quick Japanese phrases for my trip to Japan, Japanesepod101.com has been one of the best resources I’ve used for learning Japanese.

They have their own website where you can sign up for their program for free, but I also recommend their class on Udemy: Learn Japanese for Beginners: The Ultimate 100-Lesson Course

This Udemy class assembles the videos in a way that makes sense when you’re learning. Some of the videos are dated, but the content is still valid.

Software

Airtable

Screenshot by author

If you’re using spreadsheets to organize everything but feel like you need something more advanced, try Airtable for free. It is amazing tool that looks and feels a lot like a spreadsheet, but it’s actually a database.

If you want to learn more about how to get the most out of Airtable, check out my tutorial on How to Build an Efficient Reference Library in Airtable.

Dubsado

Photo by Dubsado

Dubsado is a great customer relationship management (CRM) software for freelancers. It has robust features, including automated workflows, signable contracts, client payment portals, integration with multiple payment processors, and more. Their how-to videos are super helpful, and I was able to set up almost all of my workflows using their videos and self-service knowledge base. They update the software often, and whenever I’ve needed help, customer support has been amazing.

Get 20% off a Dubsado subscription your first month or year!

Kindara App

Screenshot by Kindara

This is the best period and health tracking app that I have tried, especially if you’re using fertility awareness-based methods for natural birth control, and it’s fully customizable to your needs. Full disclosure: I’ve been using this app since 2015 and worked for the parent company from 2018 to 2021. (Ironically, I’m not getting paid for this plug 😂) More importantly, Kindara changed my life. Twice.

Download Kindara for Android | Download Kindara for iOS

Notion

Screenshot of Notion’s Acme Inc. example taken by author

Notion is my favorite tool for project management and organizing information. I never thought Airtable would be unseated as my favorite, but Notion is versatile and intuitive.

If I had to choose only one software to use, Notion would be it.

Todoist

Screenshot by Todoist

I recently discovered Todoist after I was laid off and was having trouble getting anything done for my blog and personal life. I had previously been using Google Keep, but that was difficult because it was one long list of everything I needed to get done, and even if I checked off 5 this, I still had 20 more to do.

Todoist helped me get organized because I could schedule tasks for a specific day without taking up space on my calendar. This turned out to be critical for a productive day because I don’t overload myself on any given day, and I get to check everything off on the list, which is satisfying.

Menstrual Products

LOLA

Photo by LOLA

If you’re not into reusable menstrual supplies, LOLA is a wonderful option for organic cotton pads and tampons. I can’t vouch for the tampons, but before I switched to cloth, I really liked the pads and the ease of the monthly subscription. I am also a big fan of their cleansing wipes and personal lube.

Get $5 off your first purchase at LOLA.

Period Aisle

Photo by Period Aisle

Formerly known as Lunapads, Aisle is my favorite period product. Their reusable cloth pads and period undies are amazing! The cloth pads are absorbent, comfortable, and washer and dryer safe, and the undies are perfect for overnight and heavy days. As an added bonus, they are inclusive in their photos and language.

Get $10 off your first purchase at Period Aisle.