back to top
Shopping

9 Life-Changing Things To Try In June

Because we tried them for you in May!

Posted on

We hope you love the products we recommend! Just so you know, BuzzFeed may collect a share of sales or other compensation from the links on this page. Oh, and FYI — prices are accurate and items in stock as of time of publication.

The BuzzFeed staff is always trying new products, apps, hacks, and DIY projects, and we decided it was time to start sharing the best of them with you. Each month, we post our recommendations for what’s actually worth it. This post features a mix of items that we purchased with our own money ("things we bought") and those that were provided to us at no cost for the sake of review ("things we tried"). (But! We’re under no obligation to write a review of those things, let alone a positive review.)Let us know in the comments what sorts of things you’d like us to review next month!
Kevin Valente / BuzzFeed

The BuzzFeed staff is always trying new products, apps, hacks, and DIY projects, and we decided it was time to start sharing the best of them with you. Each month, we post our recommendations for what’s actually worth it. This post features a mix of items that we purchased with our own money ("things we bought") and those that were provided to us at no cost for the sake of review ("things we tried"). (But! We’re under no obligation to write a review of those things, let alone a positive review.)

Let us know in the comments what sorts of things you’d like us to review next month!

1. An dotted journal that’s basically a clone of the cult-favorite Leuchtturm1917 for nearly half the price.

Like many other mildly uptight humans who love organization and the illusion of productivity, I keep a bullet journal. I've long been a Leuchtturm1917 devotee and never thought I'd stray from the good path. But then, I had a need I couldn't ignore: I wanted a millennial pink bullet journal, and that desire outweighed my Leuchtturm loyalty and my eyes started wandering. (Leuchtturm, if you're reading this, I'm really sorry. Start making pastel notebooks and I might consider taking you back.) I found this one on Amazon and tbh, it’s a near-perfect Leuchtturm knockoff. It’s $10.95 (compared to $19.95 for the Leuchtturm) and in the two months since I bought it, it hasn’t let me down. Compared to the Leuchtturm, its pages are whiter, rather than off-white, which feels overall cleaner and nicer to me. Plus, the paper quality in general is *chefs kiss*: thick and durable with very little bleed-through. It doesn’t have an index or page numbers, but I never particularly valued those anyway, so it wasn’t a huge loss for me. Right now, it comes in black, blue, red, yellow, and forest green (which is going to be my next buy) — keep an eye out, though, because color options fluctuate all the time. Overall, if you’re looking for an affordable and convenient bullet journal, this guy has my vote! —Anna Borges Get it from Amazon for $10.95.
Anna Borges / BuzzFeed

Like many other mildly uptight humans who love organization and the illusion of productivity, I keep a bullet journal. I've long been a Leuchtturm1917 devotee and never thought I'd stray from the good path. But then, I had a need I couldn't ignore: I wanted a millennial pink bullet journal, and that desire outweighed my Leuchtturm loyalty and my eyes started wandering. (Leuchtturm, if you're reading this, I'm really sorry. Start making pastel notebooks and I might consider taking you back.)

I found this one on Amazon and tbh, it’s a near-perfect Leuchtturm knockoff. It’s $10.95 (compared to $19.95 for the Leuchtturm) and in the two months since I bought it, it hasn’t let me down. Compared to the Leuchtturm, its pages are whiter, rather than off-white, which feels overall cleaner and nicer to me. Plus, the paper quality in general is *chefs kiss*: thick and durable with very little bleed-through. It doesn’t have an index or page numbers, but I never particularly valued those anyway, so it wasn’t a huge loss for me. Right now, it comes in black, blue, red, yellow, and forest green (which is going to be my next buy) — keep an eye out, though, because color options fluctuate all the time.

Overall, if you’re looking for an affordable and convenient bullet journal, this guy has my vote! —Anna Borges

Get it from Amazon for $10.95.

2. A selfie stick/tripod combo that will help you step up your Instagram game.

In the past year, I’ve been doing a bit more traveling — which has been fun and great! The thing is, it’s mostly solo trips, which makes it tough when I’ve wanted pictures (of myself, like the true attention seeker I am) from my trips for the ‘gram. Sure, I could get your standard selfie stick, but when I saw THIS selfie stick with an extra-long reach (almost five feet!) that also doubles as a tripod for $27, I was intrigued. I know what you’re thinking, “But, Brett! Selfie sticks are so embarrassing and make you look like such a tourist!” Listen, I know — but also dignity be damned, I just want to live my best life, OK??

I recently took this bad boy on a solo trip to Hawaii and was so glad I did. At first, I was a little worried it was going to be a bit bulky or awkward to handle — but not only was it completely fine, there were certain times (like when it was a little windy for instance) I was grateful it felt a bit more sturdy!

As for the tripod mode, it really came in handy for setting up the occasional scenic candid (or, plan-did, if you will). While I used the tripod mode for setting up shots on my trip, you could totally also use it to set up a little photoshoot in your apartment on those days you’re really feeling your look. Overall, this selfie stick tripod really stepped up my travel game and I’ll definitely be bringing it on all of my future trips! —Brett Vergara

Get it on Amazon for $26.99.

3. A super cute summer dress.

I bought this super cute (and cheap!) dress from Old Navy, and I loved it so much I went back to buy it in another color. I love that there's a defined waist, but it's still flow-y with the ruffled hem. Plus, it's stretchy in the back so it's very comfy and fits well. It's honestly a perfect summer dress and I'm debating going back for a third one! —Nikki FrancoisGet it from Old Navy for $17.97-$24. (Available in five floral prints/colors, sizes XS to XXL.)
BuzzFeed

I bought this super cute (and cheap!) dress from Old Navy, and I loved it so much I went back to buy it in another color. I love that there's a defined waist, but it's still flow-y with the ruffled hem. Plus, it's stretchy in the back so it's very comfy and fits well. It's honestly a perfect summer dress and I'm debating going back for a third one! —Nikki Francois

Get it from Old Navy for $17.97-$24. (Available in five floral prints/colors, sizes XS to XXL.)

Adrianna Licitra / BuzzFeed

How many times have you said, “Starting today, I’m going to drink more water”? If you’re like me, you probably can’t even count that number. “Drink more water” has been on the top of my New Year’s resolution list for probably the past 10 years, and I have never been able to keep it up for more than a day or so — no matter how many doctors, friends, and websites tell me that it is the answer to all of life’s problems. Finally, when this winter had robbed me of every last bit of moisture and my skin was dry and cracking, I got serious about this goal and got this amazing tumbler.

Here’s how it works: You fill the tumbler with water and once you drink it all you slide one of the bands up to the top, refill, and repeat until you’ve drunk your daily recommended amount (or more). Easy peasy! My big problem was that I'd get busy and simply forget to drink, but having a visual way to track my progress throughout the day is so helpful. I used to barely finish one measly 16 oz. bottle, but now I’m consistently drinking at least the minimum recommended amount of water per day. (Sometimes I even drink way more!)

The tumbler is BPA-free and very durable. It's double-walled to keep drinks cold, it never spills or leaks, and it’s dishwasher-safe! And I hate to be another one of those people nagging everyone else to to drink more water, but I did see a significant improvement in my energy levels, skin health, and constantly achy muscles, and I had fewer snack cravings… So basically, DRINK MORE WATER! It really does make a big difference. (Warning: When I first started, I had to pee just about every 15 minutes but eventually my body got used to being hydrated and my bathroom breaks went back to normal.) —Adrianna Licitra

Get it from Amazon for $15.13.

5. A chocolatey herbaceus tea/coffee alternative for when you want to scratch your coffee itch with a little less caffeine.

Anna Borges

I recently had to face the cold hard fact that as much as I love coffee, drinking the amount of it that I do (um, a lot) revved up my anxiety and did more harm than good. That said, I still loved the ritual of drinking coffee in the morning, so when I received a sample of Big Heart Tea’s Fake Coffee, I was like, “Yes, please save me from myself and my vices.”

The tea is made from organic cacao, roasted chicory, dandelion root, and sweet cinnamon and when it’s brewed, it straight up looks and drinks like a cup off coffee. Part of my issue with tea as a coffee alternative is it’s never quite rich or full-bodied enough to scratch the same itch, but I didn’t run into that problem with Fake Coffee. It was super flavorful — more chocolatey and nutty that coffee and definitely not a *direct* taste swap for the real deal, but still delicious. I wound up brewing a whole jug to keep in the fridge as a replacement for my morning iced coffee habit, and I highly recommend it, especially with a big ol’ dash of oat milk.

Get it from Big Heart Tea for $9.99.

6. An easy-to-make single-serving treat.

Hannah Loewentheil / BuzzFeed

I don't like baking, but I love eating baked goods (cookies, brownies, cake, you name it). So when I was sent a package of Miss Jone's microwaveable desserts in a cup, I became hooked. They come in a bunch of different cake flavors like brownie, confetti pop, and warm double chocolate. You just take off the lid, add a few tablespoons of water, microwave it for 40 seconds, and voilà: Instant warm and gooey dessert that actually tastes pretty damn delicious. There's no mess whatsoever, and they make for the the perfect after-dinner treat or mid-work snack. —Hannah

Get a pack of two for $4.98 or a pack of four for $9.96 from Miss Jones Baking Co.

7. An incredible (and free!) online yoga channel.

View this video on YouTube

youtube.com

Never in a million years did I think I'd get into yoga, but I came across Yoga For Adriene a while back when I was trolling YouTube for free/easy workout ideas, and it's completely changed me. Her down-to-earth approach and enormous catalog of videos — tons of which are perfect for beginners, and tons of which are 20 minutes or less — have been a comforting constant in my life every since. This past spring had been a nonstop personal disaster train of having the flu, back problems, and anxiety, and being able to sit down with a 20-minute video (in the comfort of my own home and ratty PJs) has instilled a greater sense of ownership (and pride!) in my body, without all the pressure of fancy classes or expensive gyms. If you've always wanted to "get into" yoga but have felt too intimidated, start here! —Delia Cai

8. An easy way to spend less time mindlessly scrolling through your phone.

Gyan Yankovich / Via http://
Gyan Yankovich / Via http://
← Slide →
Gyan Yankovich / Via http://

A few weeks ago, I downloaded an app called Moment to track how much time I was spending on my phone each day. When I found out that I'd spend four hours and 22 minutes (!!!) on my phone one rainy Saturday, I was mortified — a whole four and a bit hours of my life wasted refreshing the same three apps. I decided enough was enough and made some changes. I started using an alarm clock instead my phones alarm, left my phone in a different room when I watched TV, and deleted the Twitter and Facebook apps. But one of the most effective changes I made was turning my phone screen to greyscale. Phone screens are designed to get our attention with colors — that little red notification bubble is the perfect example. And when you, like me, use Instagram more than any other app, sharp bright screen colors suck you in even more. Once the colors on my screen disappeared, I didn't feel like notifications needed my instant attention, because I didn't notice them unless I was specifically checking for them, and scrolling social media became dull — in a good way.

The change is pretty easy to make and reverse. If you have an iPhone, you go to Settings > General > Accessibility > Display Accommodations > Color Filters > then select "grayscale." I also set up a shortcut there my greyscale turns on and off when I hit the home button three times in a row, which makes it easy to toggle between the two if I'm doing something like taking a photo or actually do want a few minutes of proper Instagram time. (It's also worth noting that if you do take a photo or screenshot while on greyscale mode, it will save in color! I Photoshopped the above image to show you what my phone looks like when it's in black and white.)

The best thing about this little life hack is that it reminds you that your phone is just a phone, meant for calls and text messages — it doesn't and shouldn't have to be your single source of entertainment. When the color is gone from my screen I can see just how uninteresting it is to stare at a tiny screen when the whole dang world is shining bright in real-life around me. —Gyan Yankovich

9. And two tips for making spaghetti squash easier to prepare.

Rachel Miller

I really like eating spaghetti squash, but every time I go to cut one in half to cook it, I worry that I'm going to end up in the emergency room. It's just so hard to cut through. But I recently tried a trick a friend recommended that really worked: I scored the squash about six times with a knife (I made roughly half-inch wide cuts, maybe a quarter-inch deep), and then microwaved it for about five minutes, which softened it up and made it so much easier to cut. (Though you should still be careful when cutting because it will be hot.) My other tip? Instead of trying to scoop out the seeds/guts with a spoon, use kitchen shears to broadly sort of hack them out — everything will come out much faster/easier that way! —Rachel Miller