The best beauty and cozy at-home essentials to buy while you're in lockdown

By Caitlan Moneta and Ivy Tang

This story originally appeared in Issue 714 of HELLO! Canada magazine, available on newsstands across the country and on iPhones and tablets now!

Just because we're at home doesn't mean we've given up our shopping habit! According to retailmenot.ca, April saw a 58 per cent jump in online traffic for fashion and beauty retailers in Canada – with the most clicks going to Hudson's Bay, Sephora and Bath & Body Works.

Since the shift to online shopping is a trend that will likely continue long after the coronavirus lockdown ends, we polled the pros about their favourite insider finds, from the best in beauty to cozy at-home essentials.

The Detox Market

Known for their stunning curation of clean beauty brands, the shop has attracted star shoppers including Cameron Diaz, Rachel McAdams, Donatella Versace and John Mayer. We asked Elena Severin, the director of brand partnerships, to fill us in on all things green.

Aether Beauty Crystal Charged Cheek Palette in Rose Quartz, $58, thedetoxmarket.ca

THE NEW FAVOURITE
"I'm definitely eyeing non-toxic home essentials that are sustainable and pretty. I can't wait to add Kjaer Weis's new Flush & Glow cheek duo and Aether Beauty's cheek palettes into my makeup bag!"

Kjaer Weis Flush And Glow Duo in Luminous Flush, $73, thedetoxmarket.ca

THE BESTSELLER
"Detox Mode's Impossible Soap and hand creams by Henné and Sparitual have been flying out the door. Along with skin-care staples, we are also seeing a lot of treatment products spike in popularity like Rahua's Omega 9 Hair Mask, Goop's Microderm Exfoliator and Odacité's Gua Sha tools."

Detox Mode Impossible Soap, $30, thedetoxmarket.ca

THE SELF-CARE ESSENTIAL
"I am adding some immunity boosting products to my cart like Well Told Health's Vitamin D Booster and indulgent relaxation products such as Odacité's Mood Cleansing Ayurvedic Bath Soak."

Nordstrom

The Seattle-based department store recently launched a Canadian-exclusive site, which makes it even easier to dive into their designer-meets- street approach to style. Red Godfrey, vice-president, creative, gives us a peek inside her spring wishlist.

Herbivore Botanicals Rose Quartz Facial Roller, $50, nordstrom.ca

THE NEW FAVOURITE
"I am really passionate about sustainability in fashion. I'm proud that Nordstrom is making commitments on our path forward."

Zella Studio Lite Longline Sports Bra, $49, nordstrom.ca

THE BESTSELLER

"It's no surprise that our customers are loving cozy loungewear, activewear, self-care beauty and tops – it's all about being comfy for on-screen time. I just bought a tie-dye sweatshirt and matching pants that I love. I also bought a pretty Isabel Marant blouse that I know will be on constant rotation during videoconference calls."

Ulla Johnson Liana Metallic Stripe Ruffle Balloon Sleeve Blouse, $358, nordstrom.ca

THE SELF-CARE ESSENTIAL
"This is the perfect time to clean out your closet – you can rediscover pieces in your wardrobe and try out new looks. We have a great how-to video on our Instagram page. Start thinking about what you might be missing, or replace a piece you love that no longer fits."

Simons

The family-owned store, five generations strong, is branching out in new directions for their online shop. Owner and vice-president of buying, Richard Simons, fills us in on the exciting exclusives to come and why napkins are among the hottest buys.

THE NEW FAVOURITE
"All my interest is in tops these days, as most of my time is spent videoconferencing! I'm also proud to announce the recently launched Vision, a program which redefines sustainable fashion, as well as an exclusive collection of indigenous designs, which debuts in June."

Rituels Foaming shave cream, $24, simons.ca

THE BESTSELLER
"Men's grooming products from our in-house Rituels brand have seen an increase in popularity. It's a time for discovery as people have more time to research the items they have always dreamed about but haven't had the time to pursue."

Kas Australia Exotic sheen Euro pillow sham, $40, simons.ca

THE SELF-CARE ESSENTIAL
"Our home department, Maison, is the most popular section of the site as the whole country seems to be redoing their bedrooms at once! Windbreakers and training gear from our iFive department have also seen exceptionally strong demand."

ALSO WORTH BUYING

Simons Seashell Flat Sandals, $59, simons.ca

Hudson's Bay

The storied department store, which has outfitted celebrities like Bradley Cooper and Joshua Jackson in its iconic stripes, has taken its wares to the web. Fashion director Tyler Franch gives us the low-down on everything from collaborations to cleansers.

THE NEW FAVOURITE
"I am really excited about Hudson’s Bay's 350th anniversary collection that features a gorgeous merino wool sweater by Armour Lux. Once the warm weather hits, it's the time to break out a pleated skirt, dress or lightweight trench. Now more than ever, romantic colourways, like moody pastels, are exciting because they spark a feeling of optimism."

Pretty You London Faux Fur Slide Slippers, $28, thebay.com

THE BESTSELLER
"As you can imagine, we’ve seen an uptick in items that keep you comfortable at home like loungewear, indoor footwear, cozy knits and skin care. Decor pieces to refresh smaller spaces, like a new throw blanket or wall art pieces, have also been popular items."

Les Essentiels by Hudson's Bay Eye Mask Set of 30, $40, thebay.com

THE SELF-CARE ESSENTIAL
"With more time to test and play with products, I’ve been able to discover what works best to de-stress and brighten my skin. I’ve been using an illuminating facial cleanser by YSL that is so refreshing, followed by the Les Essentiels Eye Masks from Hudson’s Bay in the morning to really re-energize my skin."

Failsafe shopping secrets to score the best deals online

The more words you can use to identify a product in the search, the better chance you have to find what you are looking for!

Join loyalty programs to benefit from the best added-value services including samples, loyalty dollars or points and gifts with purchase.

Make use of wish lists to keep track of items you have your eye on or save favourites in your shopping cart so you can be notified if they go on sale.

Sign up for brand newsletters to stay up-to-date about new items, offers and learn about what brands are doing in their communities.

Keep your eye on the free shipping minimum to save extra charges. Forgiving policies that include longer return times and free shipping are added incentives.

How to make sure you don't need to return that online purchase

It might be love at first click for those designer pants or trendy boots, but here are a few helpful tips to make sure your latest buy isn’t destined for return.

DO
Use the size guide provided. It’s worth investing in a soft measuring tape to determine your exact measurements, suggests Tyler. Simons' high tech Fit Finder uses artificial intelligence to guide you through the process.

DO
Read customer reviews to gauge whether a product runs large or small, says Red. If you already own something from that brand, have a look in your closet to compare.

DO
Order 2 sizes if you’re really torn, advises Red. Once you have them both at home, see which one looks best and simply return the other.

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