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At the end of the year, it’s always fun to look back at what you’ve accomplished in the past year. So I was thrilled to dig through our data and learn a bit about what really resonated with our readers. While some of the items people bought like crazy were totally expected (the Instant Pot, for example), others were actually quite surprising.
These are the most popular items our readers have purchased in 2017. Did you buy anything on this list?
1. Self discovery was huge this year
This year, everyone wanted to find out more about their backgrounds and their genes. Largely due to Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales, Ancestry and 23andMe’s DNA and genetic testing kits flew off the proverbial shelves.
2. Practically everyone got an Instant Pot
The Instant Pot craze is only growing more intense, so it’s no surprise to see so many different models and accessories in this list. You can make anything in it, and it saves an insane amount of time and effort while also all but guaranteeing a perfect outcome.
Get the Instant Pot IP DUO60 7-in-1 Pressure Cooker for $99
Get the Instant Pot IP Duo Plus 9-in-1 Pressure Cooker for $119.95
Get the Instant Pot Tempered Glass Lid for $14.95
Get the Instant Pot Pressure Cooker Cookbook for $8.99
3. People tested the smart home waters
The Amazon Echo Dot is the smallest and most affordable Alexa smart speaker in the Echo lineup, and loads of people welcomed Alexa into their homes this year. With the ability to set reminds and alarms, play music, and do all sorts of other fun things, it’s no surprise to see this gadget and its big brother so high up on the list this year.
4. Devices are getting smarter with a little help
Smart plus are fantastic because you can plug anything into them and they instantly become smarter too. You can use them to toggle devices on and off, such as lights, flat irons, tea kettles, and anything else you can think of. The TP-Link plug is our favorite affordable smart plug, and the iDevices Switch was the best overall.
5. Dead batteries are a thing of the past
Nothing is worse than when your phone reaches that dangerous 5% battery level, and this year our readers did something to prevent it. This portable battery backup can charge a smartphone 6 times over, and it’s one of our editor’s personal favorites.
6. More people are watching TV with Amazon Alexa
While the Fire TV stick didn’t perform as well on our tests as other options, like the Roku Ultra, it still proved popular among our readers. Perhaps it’s the ability to watch Amazon Prime Video or maybe it’s the fact that you can ask Alexa to find your shows for you. We all know trying to type anything in to search with a remote control is the worst.
7. The best affordable robot vacuum ever is still a favorite
This robot vacuum is the best we’ve ever tested, and it was often on sale for under $200 this year, but would sell out fast ever time. Now, with the introduction of the not-as-great Eufy 11+, the 11’s price has jumped up quite a bit. So if you got one on sale this year, pat yourself on the back.
8. Everyone’s listening to more music on demand
A subscription to Amazon Music Unlimited lets you listen to your favorite tracks whenever you want. And if you have an Amazon Echo, you can simply ask Alexa to play whatever song you’re in the mood for.
9. Tablets for under $100 were a big hit
Tablets can cost a lot of money, but they don’t have to. Loads of our readers picked up the best-selling Fire HD 8 this year. With a large, high-def screen and easy access to Amazon Prime member perks like Prime Video, this little tablet packs a punch and it’s under $100.
10. Simple but effective skin care was a priority
Aquaphor has loads of uses, especially for dry skin. And our readers went nuts for it this year, especially while it was on sale during Prime Day. If you’re feeling the effects of this winter weather, pick some up now to restore the moisture in your skin.
11. More people cooked at home with better cookware
A good frying pan doesn’t have to cost an arm and a leg. This model went on sale a few times this year, and it proved very popular among all the home chefs in our audience.
12. Aromatherapy was essential to soothe the senses
Surrounding yourself with good smells can lift your mood, calm you down, or just put a smile on your face. There are so many aromatherapy devices out there, but this adorable machien proved to be the favorite this year.
13. Portable speakers were perfect for everyone
A good Bluetooth speaker is great to have for those spontaneous outings and adventures where music is a must. This little Anker speaker proved popular this year. It’s so small that it can fit into a back pocket, but still has a decent battery life that makes it versatile.
14. A better night’s sleep was a must
You really should replace your pillows every few years, and this was a reader favorite. Most memory foam tends to get hot, but this is ventilated and comes with a gel-infused cover to keep you cool.
15. Everyone wanted to try one of the hottest cooking trends of the year
Sous vide cooking is a great way to get a perfectly cooked meal every single time, and the Anova is the best immersion circulator we’ve ever tested. With a handful of awesome sales throughout the year, it’s no surprise everyone snatched up one of these unique and fun cooking tools.
16. Everyone really wanted to take a break from cleaning
The iLife A4s robot vacuum is another great model for anyone who wants to have a clean home without putting in the leg work. This robovac went on sale a handful of times this year, and people went nuts for them.
17. Smart lights brightened up lots of homes
Philips Hue smart bulbs are the best we’ve ever tested, so it’s no surprise everyone wanted to redo their home lighting. Not only do the LED bulbs save energy, but you can control them from your phone, set schedules, and create scenes for different events. Plus, they work with Alexa.
18. Loads of veggies got ‘zoodled’
Spiralized vegetables are a great way to eat healthier and try new recipes, and this countertop spiralizer (the best we’ve tested) helped loads of our readers stop overspending on pre-cut veggies.
19. People fell back in love with reading
The best e-reader is also one of the most popular items of the year among our readers. With adjustable lighting and the ability to read anywhere you go, the Paperwhite is perfect for anyone who loves books.
20. Cold brew became a homemade delight
Cold brew coffee is a delicious treat all year long, but it’s expensive to buy from coffee shops every day. We tested a bunch of cold brew makers and this one came out on top. So if you want to get in on the craze, the Takeya is your best bet.
Prices are accurate at the time of publication, but may change over time.