23 Genius Products That Will Help You Keep Your New Year’s Resolutions
Failing to plan is planning to fail, so set yourself up for success by choosing the right gadgets to achieve your goals in the new year.
Every product is independently selected by our editors. If you buy something through our links, we may earn an affiliate commission.
Start off the new year right
Yep, it’s that time of the year again—when even the most cynical among us hopes to start fresh and change our lives for the better. Of course, those New Year’s resolutions are a lot easier to make than to keep. But when you have all the right things on hand, you’re a whole lot more likely to stick to those promises you make when the clock strikes midnight. If you’re making one (or more) of the following popular resolutions, these smart items can help you stick to your best-laid plans. And don’t miss these other tricks for keeping your New Year’s resolutions, from people who actually did.
Note: Prices listed were accurate as of press time; pricing fluctuations may occur.
Cook more often
It’s easy to fall into a pattern of take-out and TV dinners on busy weeknights, not to mention going out for lunch while at work and checking out new restaurants on weekends. But not only does this start adding up cost-wise—but it can also start adding up on your scale in the form of unwanted pounds. A new cookware set can motivate anyone to spend more time in the kitchen, and HexClad’s 7-piece pan set, which is featured in Oprah’s Favorite Things 2019, is just the set you’ve been looking for. It’s a premium hybrid of stainless steel and nonstick cookware that’s free of PFOA chemicals, dishwasher safe, oven safe, induction ready, and scratch-resistant; it also comes with a lifetime warranty. Plus, the design of peaks and valleys in the bottom of the pan means you can cook with less butter and oil for lower-fat meals. Start with these superfood recipes you should be making.
A fluffy new comforter that’s lightweight and breathable but snuggly-warm will beckon you to bed on time. Nest Bedding’s washable wool comforter, made from clean, natural wool lovingly gathered here in the States, has no goose feathers to trigger allergies or bunch up awkwardly. One reviewer writes about Nest comforters: “They seem to be a perfect combination of natural, breathable materials and warmth.” Sweet dreams! Also make sure to avoid these 11 innocent habits that are completely ruining your sleep quality.
Eat less meat
So you want to stop eating so much beef, pork, and poultry, but aren’t sure where to begin? To figure out how to put a well-rounded and flavorful meal together, consider ordering Green Chef for some inspiration. The meal-delivery kit features plenty of options that feed two to four people each week, such as cheesy pasta with butternut squash, sweet potato enchiladas, and chard and artichoke quesadillas. Drooling yet? Trust us: Nobody in your family will be asking, “Where’s the beef?” after they’ve tried these restaurant-quality dishes. And when you’re ready to flex your cooking muscles, try these 32 vegetarian meals ready in 30 minutes or less.
From reducing stress and improving empathy to expanding your vocabulary and protecting your brain from Alzheimer’s disease, there are numerous benefits of reading. But if you’re tired of seeing an unsightly pile of books on your nightstand or lugging heavy hardbacks through airports, upgrade to an eBook reader, like the Kobo Aura. It’s lightweight, eliminates glare, and minimizes eye strain, and you can store up to 3,000 eBooks on it. Throw it in your purse or display it on your coffee table and a good book will never be far from your fingertips.
Work out regularly
Do you have commitment issues? Or do you get bored easily and like new challenges? Or maybe you travel frequently? If you answered yes to any of those questions, then joining a single gym probably isn’t for you. But joining one for boxing, another for CrossFit, and a third for Pilates can be super pricey. Enter ClassPass, the membership that gives you access to 30,000 boutique studios, gyms, and wellness providers all over the country. With this one membership, you can easily book classes at different specialty gyms (think spin class, hot yoga, and barre) and even self-care activities such as massages and saunas. Feel free to try as many new places as you’d like and keep going back to your favorites. By the way, this is the best time to work out, according to science.
Clear up your skin
Adult acne rearing its ugly head? While there are proven methods of curing cystic acne in three weeks by using medications prescribed by a dermatologist, it’s not the only option. The ClearStem Skincare line consists of non-toxic products that combine anti-aging and anti-acne benefits to clear up your blemishes. There’s a formula to dissolve blackheads, one to brighten your complexion, another to cleanse with antioxidant-infused bamboo particles to keep pores clear, and one more to fade scars and brown spots left behind after breakouts.
Spend less on electricity
There are some clever ways to slash your home energy bills, and a smart thermostat is one of them. In fact, the Google Next Learning Thermostat can help you save up to 12 percent on heating and 15 percent on cooling because it automatically turns itself down when you’re away to avoid wasting energy on an empty home. It’s also ENERGY STAR certified and includes an energy history feature so you can see how much energy you’re using to help hit your goal.
Use less plastic
Between health concerns and environmental impact, there are a number of reasons to stop using plastic. Start 2020 by packing your lunches and leftovers in a W&P Porter Bowl instead. This eco-friendly ceramic food storage container features a protective silicone strap, a BPA-free plastic lid, and colors that will make you happy to dig into a salad at your cubicle. In case you were wondering, this is what it’s really like to go plastic-free.
Drink more water
Congratulations on cutting back on sugary juices and soft drinks in favor of good ol’ H20. You’ll no doubt notice some very good things happen to your body when you get a full eight glass of water a day—such as more energy and glowing skin. Of course, you don’t want to spend a fortune on bottled water or increase your consumption of single-use plastic with your healthy new lifestyle. The BPA-free and stainless steel Astrea water bottle will ensure that you stay healthy while filling up with tap water anywhere you go. It cleans your water and eliminates heavy metals and toxins, such as lead, copper, and mercury. Before you check out, you might want to add some of these other Amazon products you’ll definitely use every day.
Organize your memories
Do you have mountains of old photographs, piles of near-extinct tapes, and unprocessed film littering your drawers and closets? How do you plan to access them when a moment of nostalgia strikes or future generations ask about them? It’s time to step into the 21st century and digitize these priceless memories, and Legacybox can help. Simply order a kit, fill it with tapes, film, photos, and audio recordings, and send it in. A few weeks later, you’ll receive your digitized media, along with your originals, back in the mail. When you do, make sure you follow these 7 rules for preserving antique family photos.
Ditch the chemicals
Toxic chemicals. Dyes. Allergens. Yes, those are some of the things you’re “cleaning” your home with when using traditional household cleaning agents. Clean up your act with Force of Nature, an all-in-one deodorizer, disinfectant, and cleaner that uses water, vinegar, and salt. How does it work? An electrical current mixes the solution to form sodium hydroxide, which cleans up sticky messes, soap scum, and grime, and hypochlorous acid, which disinfects 99.9 percent of germs. It’s as effective as bleach, and it cleans virtually every surface. Here are another 15 chemical-free ways to clean your home.
Take more walks
Resolving to walk more? Initially, you may just be looking for a surefire way to lose a few pounds, but there are even more benefits of walking for just 15 minutes. Since it’s not always easy to turn new habits into a steady routine, it’s nice to have a little reminder to help encourage more steps throughout the day. The Fitbit Alta HR is a slim fitness wristband that tracks your steps, heart rate, calories burned, and sleep stages. And if you have a competitive spirit, the app allows you to challenge other Fitbit users, which is sure to motivate you to step up your own game. Just don’t text and walk at the same time: Believe it or not, that combo causes 11,000 injuries a year.
See the world
Staring longingly at your passport, wishing you could add a few new stamps this year? Or perhaps you’re considering one of these 15 places to visit in 2020 before they get too popular? That’s a great resolution, and one you’ll need to gear up for properly. The eBags Fortis Pro Carry-on will not only help you arrive in style—it also offers incredible functionality, including a built-in external USB port, an interior compression strap with built-in packing cubes, and a removable laundry bag. Even if you don’t have the budget for international vacations, treat yo’self to some incredible weekend adventures at national parks or even a staycation at an awesome resort.
If this is the year you vow to better organize all the thoughts, goals, commitments, and personal-development priorities that are floating around in your head, then consider the Blue Sky non-dated Buzz Planner your new BFF. It’s designed to help you find focus, clarity, and productivity with personal mind maps, goal-mapping pages, habit tracking, note space, to-do lists, hourly scheduling, and three-month-review check-ins to help keep you on track for the next six months. Think of it as part journal and part planner, so your whole life can converge into this one book. Don’t miss these 50 other organizing tips you’ll wish you knew all along.
Wake up on time
Perhaps your boss made mention of your frequent tardiness in your year-end review. Or maybe you’d just like to hit the snooze button less so that your mornings are less frantic. With the Philips Wake-Up Light Alarm Clock on your nightstand, you’ll wake up feeling more refreshed, thanks to light that simulates sunrise by gradually increasing in brightness over a 30-minute window. No more jolting awake to a stressful beep or fumbling around in the dark—a gentle beep sounds once the light has reached its brightest setting. It also doubles as a great bedside lamp for reading or journaling. To make your mornings even better, try these 11 daily morning habits of highly organized people.
Anyone with an aging laptop knows how frustrating it can be to lug around a heavy computer, wait for programs to slowly open, and miss out on software updates that aren’t compatible with your archaic system. The Lenovo Flex is the gadget for you, with its eight hours of battery life, lightweight portability, and Windows 10 operating system. The 14-inch touch screen offers intuitive navigation, you can fold it into Tablet mode for drawing or taking notes with the Active Pen, and you can put it in Tent mode for streaming when watching favorite shows. It’s the perfect device for multitasking, gaming, media editing, and web browsing.
Improve Internet speed
Between your kids’ addictions to gaming, your spouse’s work-from-home setup, and your Netflix binges, it’s easy to see why your family is suffering from slow Internet speeds. Instead of enduring one more complaint, install Netgear’s Orbi Tri-band Whole Home Mesh WiFi System. It’s sure to maximize speed to your devices, and it allows you to roam throughout your home without worrying about the dreaded dead zones. Plus, the multi-layer security software protects all your connected devices from viruses and malware. That said, no matter how good your cybersecurity is, make sure you know these 16 clear signs you’re about to be hacked.
Keep up with chores
Some days, it seems like the laundry never ends, the dirty dishes will remain in a permanent stack by the sink, and the bathtubs will always be slick with soap scum. But there is one household chore you don’t have to slave over: your floors. The Shark ION Robot is a dual-action robot vacuum cleaner with a full hour of cleaning time, smart sensor navigation, and an easy-to-use remote control. Sit back on the couch, put your feet up, and watch as it removes dust and debris from your carpets, floors, and even under furniture—or, you know, grab some laundry and start folding! But skip these 20 household chores that are a waste of time.
Look more rested
You know the phrase fake it till you make it? Well, sometimes that’s the best approach—and if you’re always looking like you could use a nap because of the embarrassingly dark circles under your eyes, then it’s time to fake looking bright-eyed and bushy-tailed. Olay Brightening Eye Cream instantly reduces the appearance of those unsightly dark circles and even reduces fine lines over time. Just dab a little on in the morning and again at bedtime for bright eyes that tell the world, “I slept great last night!” even if happy hour went until 2 a.m. And in case it was a particularly rough night, make sure you know these makeup tricks that help hide a hangover.
Stop cracking your phone screen
Most phone cases are cute, but if you suffer from slippery fingers, then what you really need is functionality. Choose a durable phone case with a slim grip band on the back, such as Grip2u, to help prevent phone drops. Some models also have kickstands and a slot for credit cards, making it a great case for travel. Say goodbye to your repair bills and hello to your favorite new accessory. Speaking of things you’ll love, don’t miss these other cell phone accessories that will make your life so much easier.
Save your back
Constant pressure to get more work done often means hunching over a laptop, tablet or even your phone for many more hours than is healthy for your posture. Which is why restorative, supportive sleep becomes even more important. If you wake up sweating or with aches and pains, try adding a cooling mattress topper, like this one by Sleepyhead. The copper-infused memory foam helps draw excess heat from your body and helps ease pressure points to promote spinal alignment.
Jumpstart a healthier diet
Whether you’re a believer in juice cleanses or just want to start eating cleaner, your body will thank you for Raw Generation, a brand of 100% plant-based, vegan juices that taste great with zero sugar. The juices—in Sweet Greens, Tarte Greens, Citrus Carrot, Sweet Roots and Cool Greens—deliver vitamins, minerals and enzymes to aid digestion, promote gut health, and ideally help you shed some extra holiday pounds. At the very least, they’re a yummy way to get your daily dose of greens.
Take better care of your smile
If you’re still using a manual toothbrush, it’s time to upgrade to electric. The Philips Sonicare DiamondClean Smart removes 10 times more plaque and almost 100% more stains in just three days than your old manual brush, not to mention that it boosts gum health. It’s your same tooth-brushing routine, but so much more effective. As a bonus, the toothbrush comes with lots of fun bells and whistles like Bluetooth and RFID (radio frequency identification) so you can get personalized coaching in real time. Comes in six colors but we’re sort of obsessed with the pink.
Want more deals and product picks sent directly to your inbox? Sign up for the Stuff We Love newsletter!