InsideCart: What Our Editors Bought in May

Including a pickling guide, hard-sided luggage and ultra running shoes

June 10, 2024 10:54 am
These are the goods that InsideHook editors shopped for last month.

Nota bene: If you buy through the links in this article, we may earn a small share of the profits.

Welcome to InsideCart, your sneak peek into what we, the discerning and ultra-picky editors of InsideHook, are adding to our own shopping carts each month. Consider it your monthly insight into all things cutting-edge (or charmingly vintage) from your favorite cohort of taste-making product freaks. Last month: the ultimate guide to pickling, hard-sided luggage you can find on Amazon and a pair of ultramarathoner-approved trainers from Mount to Coast.

Given that a not-insignificant part of my job is lacing up new sneakers and hitting the pavement to deliver the most thorough and comprehensive gear reviews for you, I end up trying my fair share of running shoes, and admittedly, there’s been a bit of a slump in the market in the past year. Too many ultra-fast, $300 racers or ultra-plush 40mm-stack trainers, and not enough in between. That’s why I’ve been desperate to call out Mount to Coast, a newish running shoe company making two ultra-tested hybrid sneakers (the R1 and the S1) that cram everything I’ve been craving — a responsive base, lightweight body and updated features — package best described as Audi-Salomon XT-6 lovechild. — Paolo Sandoval, Commerce Editor

Since buying a house a couple years ago, I’ve predictably become obsessed with gardening — not flowers or shrubs or whatever, but herbs, fruits and vegetables. Have you ever seen a fucking cucumber appear from seemingly nowhere? It’s wild. But as anyone who’s ever browsed their local garden supply store would attest, most of the gardening tools they sell are junk or ugly or both — which is not at all the case with the do-it-all Hori Hori Ultimate Tool from high-end outdoor brand Bare Bones. Just this past weekend, I used it to dig holes for seedlings, to cut a heavy twine-like material on the box for my new Vego Garden and to open a Sierra Nevada Pale Ale. No shitty plastic, no dumb colors. A perfect tool. — Mike Conklin, Editor-In-Chief

I’m seeing the Rolling Stones next week and decided I wanted to dress on theme for the occasion. Instead of going the classic Hot Lips logo route, I’m donning a similar “Who the Fuck is Mick Jagger?” shirt that Keith Richards wore during the band’s Tour of the Americas 1975. — Logan Mahan, Commerce Editor

My old suitcase finally got so smashed up that its wheels stopped working (thanks, United Airlines!), which meant that it was time for an upgrade. In the past, my main criteria when selecting a suitcase have been price and size — essentially “what is the cheapest suitcase I can find that will also accommodate my compulsive need to bring the majority of my belongings with me wherever I go?” Now, however, was the time to finally be an adult, pay up and buy a real suitcase that won’t fall apart after being roughed up by baggage handlers. This little number from Samsonite is made with scratch-resistant polycarbonate, so it should be able to withstand just about anything. It’s got a TSA-compliant lock for added security, and it survived its first trip to Chicago last week — so far, so good. — Bonnie Stiernberg, Managing Editor

I’m such a geek for fermented foods, not only because I’m a sucker for brine and umami, but because they’re super nutritious, too. While I someday hope to take after my grandparents and have a fermentation cellar for pickling and winemaking, I have to start somewhere, so I added Cured: Cooking With Ferments, Pickles, Preserves & More to my cookbook collection this month. Not only does author Steve McHugh outline how to make things like mustard and hot sauce, but he also includes recipes for how to use them. — Amanda Gabriele, Senior Editor

Ever since I began reporting on outdoor clothing brand Patagonia’s microplastic crisis, I’ve been hyper-aware of all of my personal plastic use. The fossil fuel-derived material is everywhere, which is bad not just for the planet, but for human health, but that also means there are plenty of opportunities to swap out items that are destined for the dump with compostable, biodegradable, non-plastic alternatives. I started with this kitchen set from Mother Earth. Instead of a plastic sponge, plastic scrub brush and soap with chemicals you’ve never heard of, this set features kitchen sink tools made of wood, loofah, sisal fiber and other ingredients you can pronounce. Are they as obsessively designed and cheap as the plastic junk you have right now? Probably not. But on the pros and cons sheet, Mother Earth’s products win for me every time. — Alex Lauer, Features Editor

Love these. My girlfriend and I each have one for reading before bed. You tap that stem beneath the “flame” to cycle between a few different dim settings. Plus, sometimes I’ll go full Scrooge and take mine on a midnight walk to the bathroom. Saves me from walking into the fridge, which is a thing that’s happened. — Tanner Garrity, Senior Editor

It’s officially that time. Time to throw away all the mostly empty tubes of SPF that spent the winter stashed away in your beach bag and invest in something new. Enter Vacation’s new Shimmer Oil SPF 30. Touted as being the “Black Tie” of sunscreen, it’s a blend of premium oils infused with two levels of pearlescent gold mica that leaves skin with a nice bronze-y glow. I love all Vacation products — the Classic Whip Sunscreen Whip and Chardonnay Lip Oil have become permanent fixtures in the pouch of my Tommy Bahama beach chair — and I’m pleased to report that the Shimmer Oil is no exception. Keep some of this on hand for the lady (or ladies) in your life, and they’ll thank you for it.— Lindsay Rogers, Travel Editor

Cirque du Soleil’s Debut Fragrance is a Gourmand fragrance that is truly mouth-watering. It reminds me of a vanilla fragrance I had in the early 2000s and I absolutely love it. If you know someone who is a fan of Glossier You, get them this perfume. It’s different, but it has the same soft, warm, familiar feeling. — Elisabeth Chambry, Director of Commerce and Partnerships

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