Feb 12, 2020

Refinery29 Readers Confess Their Amazon Hidden Gems

Amazon is essentially an IRL version of Ariel's treasure trove, famously detailed in her The Little Mermaid number, "Part Of Your World." Only instead of a cavernous hole 1000 leagues under the sea, all that "neat" stuff is housed on digital shelves across the web. And, instead of useless, "whozits," "whatzits," and, "thingamabobs," Amazon's best booty is a collection of secret weapon stuff that we never knew we needed and now we that we have it, simply can't live without — a collection we've come to call, the hidden gems.

Since this particular online product ocean runs deep, we decided to poll an in-the-know pool of online-shopping mermaids across the country for their absolute favorite buys. From fashion to tech, beauty, travel, home decor, and health and wellness, the hidden gems' list ahead covers products so unique that you may be entirely surprised to find they were snagged off Amazon. Scroll on to shop our secret treasure trove of Amazon's hidden gems and become a part of a world filled with baby products that are actual magic, face oils, lint rollers the size of mops, trendy boots to ruffle dresses for fall, plus totes galore. And spread the good goods for our next round of Amazon hidden gems — we'd love to know what treasures you've tried, tested, and approved.

Submit your secret Amazon scores, here.


At Refinery29, we’re here to help you navigate this overwhelming world of stuff. All of our market picks are independently selected and curated by the editorial team. All product details reflect the price and availability at the time of publication. If you buy something we link to on our site, Refinery29 may earn commission.

Nylon Travel Bag


Kristina

How She Discovered It: "I was browsing Amazon for an affordable, practical, and (most importantly) not-ugly travel bag. I'm taking a lot more trips for work now, and needed something that could fit a lot of items, withstand some heavy use, and not make me feel like a thru-hiker or grandma." 

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "It's a perfect size and can hold a deceiving amount of things. On a recent business trip, I fit: my 13" laptop and charging cable, small Moleskine notebook, lots of pens/markers, phone charger, Kindle, 2 tissue packs, makeup bag, hard sunglasses case, wallet, phone, Camelbak water bottle, beanie, with a scarf knotted onto the strap, all with no bulging pockets or overflowing compartments. I like it because it has a bunch of little zipper compartments to help you organize everything (like a good travel bag should) but also is modern enough in its style that you wouldn't peg it as a "travel purse" right off the bat. The soft nylon material, boxy silhouette, and woven fabric cross-body strap put it somewhere aesthetically between a Baggu Cloud Bag and a classic Le SportSac. I've had it for almost 2 years and it still looks new."

ZOOEASS Waterproof Nylon Travel Messenger Bag (Green), $, available at Amazon

Seamless Cotton Scrunchies


Jane

How She Discovered It: "My hairdresser first gave me one because she said that the traditional hair ties broke my hair because of the strong elastic in them — so I thought I would make my own because I couldn't find ones that were multiple colored, but realized all the fabric was too expensive. A friend suggested Amazon and I found these seamless ones and the price was great." 

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "It is really special to me because I am on a very tight budget and did start to realize my old elastics were breaking my hair and I was feeling bad about myself. This product and price point made me feel comfortable and better about myself and I have noticed a difference with my hair."

BETITETO 20-Pack Seamless Cotton Scrunchies (Multicolor), $, available at Amazon

Chelsea Rain Boots


Claire

How She Discovered It: "I was looking around for some rain boots because it suddenly got really rainy — and I always borrowed my mom's before I went away to school — when I stumbled on these." 

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "They look so cute with everything and they work really well in the rain. And they were only 20 bucks!!! Sometimes I even wear them when the weather is fine just because I like them so much!"

EYUSHIJIA Waterproof Slip-On Chelsea Rain Boots, $, available at Amazon

Wooden Nose Eyeglass Holder


Cory

How She Discovered It: "I don't remember." 

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "It’s really cute and the perfect size for my nightstand."

Royal Wooden Nose Eyeglass Holder, $, available at Amazon

Plus-Size Pleather Peplum Top


Jessica

How She Discovered It: "I did a google search. Since we have prime, I figured if it didn’t fit, I could return it easily. " 

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "My hidden gem is a plus size pleather peplum top. I ordered it for my 39ish birthday party. It’s super cute and nice quality. It’s hard to find good quality, trendy plus size clothing. I didn’t want to spend a lot of cash on something I wouldn’t wear a lot. I do suggest sizing up. It’s not really special BUT it’s definitely fun! And it makes me want to search Amazon for more clothes."

Red Dot Boutique Plus-Size Pleather Peplum Top, $, available at Amazon

Nido Metal Tabletop Wine Rack


Grecia

How She Discovered It: "I had just moved into my new house and kept seeing my wine bottles just sitting there on the counter. I really didn't think it looked organized or aesthetically pleasing so I went searching for a counter rack!" 

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "I love the interesting shape, the gold color (not too yellow) and that it fits a good amount of bottles since we are a small household we don't always have a ton of bottles to put away."

Nido Metal Tabletop 9 Bottle Wine Rack, $, available at Amazon

TSLA High-Rise Leggings


Wendy

How She Discovered It: "Looking through Amazon for yoga pants and it had great reviews." 

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "I took a year off from work to try to get my life back in order. Part of that process was becoming a certified yoga teacher. Teaching yoga pays next to nothing and I was looking for yoga pants that fit well, felt good, didn't stretch out right away and didn't cost me a fortune. I stumbled on these: $14 for a pair of yoga pants that I wear several times a week, wash over and over and they still keep their shape, aren't see-through, and look good. I went back and bought other colors, but the space-dyed charcoal are still my favorite. I get compliments on them all the time and I love that I didn't have to spend a fortune!"

TSLA High-Rise Yoga Capris With Pockets, $, available at Amazon

Lao Gan Ma Chili Sauce


Jennifer

How She Discovered It: "I saw it mentioned in the Lorem Ipsum e-newsletter a year or two ago." 

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "This stuff is amazing. I'm usually a fiend for spicy food, but this isn't spicy so much as it is crispy, salty, smoky heaven in a jar. Improves every savory thing it's added to, in my opinion."

Lao Gan Ma Chilisauce Xiang La Cui (Pack of 3), $, available at Amazon

Beaded Bird Tassel Earrings


Jane

How She Discovered It: "These earrings were possibly a recommended product on my Amazon homepage? Honestly not too sure, but I remember snapping them up the moment I saw them. No clue what BEST LADY is, but they make some cute earrings." 

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "I love bright, colorful, interesting earrings. They can brighten up any outfit and make it feel more joyful."

Beaded Bird Tassel Earrings, $, available at

Epilator Facial Hair Remover


Alexandra

How She Discovered It: "Desperate to find a solution for removing rogue facial hair — and tired of paying the price for professional hair removal — I found this gem late one night while searching Amazon." 

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "Let's be frank, every girl I know struggles with facial hair removal: from full-blown mustaches to the one-off chin hair we're all waxing, tweezing, laser-ing unwanted hair from our faces. My face, in particular, is covered in peach fuzz and the occasional whisker (or five). With hair too blonde to be lasered and too sensitive for waxing, my only option was threading…I was tired of spending money on threading, so I searched Amazon for a solution. I came upon my hidden gem: the Facial Hair Removal Epilator. The epilator is a little wand with a metal spring that you roll over the areas where you want to remove hair. It takes a few uses to get the hang of the technique, but once you do…. voila! At $8.39 it's the best beauty investment I have ever made. I roll it over my chin quickly each morning after brushing my teeth to remove any unsightly hairs that may have sprung up overnight. I have recommended it to my mom and to all of my friends and everyone loves this incredible find from Amazon."

MAZU Facial Hair Removal Epilator, $, available at Amazon

Leather Travel Jewelry Case


Caitlin

How She Discovered It: "I was browsing for a travel jewelry case, and wanted something that could carry enough to last through a two-week vacation but also would be small enough to fit in a carry-on bag." 

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "I think this is the best jewelry case I've seen because it has space to fit any kind of necklace, bracelet, earring, or ring, is stylish, and can fit easily in a carry-on because of its slim design. Also, compared to other similar organizers, this one clocks in under $40, which made it perfect for my price range. I'd obviously rather spend my money booking another trip than on a designer jewelry case. "

CASE ELEGANCE Saffiano Leather Travel Jewelry Case, $, available at Amazon

Plaid Blazer


Sara

How She Discovered It: "Was looking for a new blazer and found this in a search." 

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "I rarely see someone else wearing something similar. Always get compliments when I wear it."

Aancy Plaid Blazer With Elbow Patches, $, available at Amazon

Terracotta Self-Watering Plant Stakes


Rachel

How She Discovered It: "I can't remember. Maybe my mom. Maybe I read about it." 

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "Watering stakes to keep my plant babies healthy even when I'm gone — one of those helpful tools to keep my thumb green."

Modern Innovations Terracotta Self-Watering Plant Stakes (4 Count), $, available at Amazon

Floral Bohemian Tassel Dress


Teresa

How She Discovered It: "Stumbled upon it looking for something else." 

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "They are such cute dresses that look great on literally everyone and are only $28!"

R.Vivimos Long-Sleeve Floral Tassel Midi Dress, $, available at Amazon

eufy RoboVac


Jenny

How She Discovered It: "I've always wanted an iRobot vacuum, but could never justify paying the full price of $500+. I kept my eye out for Black Friday, Cyber Monday deals but even with those promos, the thing was ~$400. During that time, I kept seeing this eufy vacuum pop up. I had never heard about the brand before, but it was a best-seller, had amazing reviews, and Amazon recommended, which made me feel confident that the thing wouldn't break after a few uses. There was also a Cyber Monday promo going on so I took a leap of faith and purchased it for around $190." 

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "Since I bought this thing, my live-in boyfriend of 4 years and I haven't had a single argument about who has to vacuum! We have very different levels of cleanliness so the frequency of vacuuming has always been a contention. Now we just have this scheduled to run every few days. I know money doesn't solve all your problems, but it did solve this one! For me, it was WELL worth the $190."

eufy BoostIQ RoboVac 11S MAX, $, available at Amazon

Sojos Polarized Sunglasses


Angela

How She Discovered It: "I saw an ad on Instagram." 

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "The sunglasses are trendy, cheap, and hold up very well. I'm on my second pair and I always get compliments on them."

Sojos Classic Square Polarized Sunglasses Unisex, $, available at Amazon

Hard As Hoof Nail Strengthening Cream


Maris

How She Discovered It: "Google research." 

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "My nails have been weak and brittle for as long as I can remember. About a year ago I decided to stop going to salons and give my nails a little TLC at home. During my research, I found a nail lotion called Hard As Hoof with thousands of 5-star ratings so I decided to give it a try. And I am so glad I did! The lotion itself smells great and has tons of natural ingredients and my nails look amazing week to week. They have grown as never before and rarely chip or break. You can massage the lotion onto your nails even when you have nail polish on. Hard as Hoof lotion will always be part of my nail care routine!"

Onyx Professional Hard As Hoof Nail Strengthening Cream, $, available at Amazon

U-Shaped Body Pillow


Katrina

How She Discovered It: "I first discovered this on a Facebook group where girls were sharing beauty tips." 

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "This item helps me to sleep on my back and protect my hair and skin. I also put a satin pillowcase on the pillow that I ordered from a seamstress on Etsy!"

Meiz U-Shaped Body Pillow With Washable Cotton Cover, $, available at Amazon

Cell-Phone Holder Selfie Ring Light


Ria Michelle

How She Discovered It: "I needed a tripod and a remote and was looking for an option on Amazon." 

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "This is such a great tool because it holds your phone and can clip on to different services, has a ring light that has different levels of brightness and also tones of light for any occasion. It even comes with a remote so you can seamlessly start and stop recording without touching the phone at all."

UBeesize Cell-Phone Holder Selfie Ring Light (3-Light Mode), $, available at Amazon

High-Waisted Bell Bottom Jeans


Sydney

How She Discovered It: "Showed up in my discover section while on the hunt for a pair of flare jeans for women under 5'2. " 

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "The quality is amazing, the fit is the most flattering, and the length is actually perfect. Plus they look like Show Me Your Mumu flares at a quarter of the cost. I've worn them a million times and they've held their shape. I've been sending the link to everyone. All three of my sisters ordered them, we're all different body types and they all look fantastic!"

Lala Ikai High-Waisted Bell Bottom Jeans, $, available at Amazon

Portable Ice Machine


Christine

How She Discovered It: "My mom's coworker had one." 

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "I wanted one because I only have ice cube trays that I have to wait hours for the cubes to freeze in — plus, with filtered water, you can have the greatest ice with no gross freezer after taste."

Antartic Star Countertop Portable Ice Maker Machine, $, available at Amazon

Rose-Quartz Money Tree


Catherine

How She Discovered It: "On a coworker's desk." 

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "I believe in the universe, chakras, crystals and to find something so elegantly creative to hold such a powerful representation brings me peace and tranquility. "

Top Plaza Chakra Healing Crystals Rose Quartz Money Tree, $, available at Amazon

Dotted-Grid Notebook


Brianna

How She Discovered It: "I was taking a free LinkedIn class on graphic design (I help friends/family with logos in my spare time), and the instructor stated that although you are creating images on various websites or software applications, drawing/sketching by hand is key. He recommended a dotted journal that you can carry around with you, so I hit Amazon to find my journal!" 

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "My journal is special to me because not only am I using it to build up my portfolio, I use it if I need an escape from my day-to-day. Drawing/sketching relaxes and centers me. I carry my journal along with me all day, every day just in case I get a great idea and need to come back to it later, or whenever I get past my writers/artist block."

UrSunshine Dotted Grid Notebook/Journal, $, available at Amazon

Over-The-Shoulder Loose Knit Sweater


Sara

How She Discovered It: "I was looking for off-the-shoulder sweaters and came across it after an extensive search on Amazon." 

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "It is so incredibly soft, and can be worn a couple of different ways depending on how much shoulder you want to expose. It's warm enough for winter, but lightweight enough for spring and fall. Plus, I get TONS of compliments every time I wear it and people are shocked when I tell them it's from Amazon!"

Exlura Off-The-Shoulder Loose Knit Sweater, $, available at Amazon

HDTV Digital Antenna


Lauren

How She Discovered It: 
"Many of my millennial friends have been looking for ways to 'cut the cord' when it comes to cable. I was researching all different streaming services for live streaming cable channels. When adding up the costs plus the internet, we were coming out only a few dollars cheaper than having an actual cable box. The best thing I found was the HDTV Antenna. My dad had one in his garage and said he gets upwards of 60 channels. When I was looking on Amazon, this one had some of the best reviews and I purchased on a lightning deal for $21!" 

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "We get 70 channels with this antenna. And all the channels are 4k quality clear. We really only wanted the major networks to be able to keep up with news and sports. I think most people still think antenna equals big ugly bunny ears on the top of your tv. This antenna is paper-thin, and we hung it up right behind our TV so you can't even see it.
The other reason I think this is a special hidden gem is it's a one time purchase of $21 and we get more channels then we need, compared to paying $40+ per/mo for streaming. I believe if more people know about these new high tech antennas they would be saving a ton of money every month!"

HDS HDTV Digital Antenna 4K 1080p, $, available at Amazon

Sherpa Fleece Pullover


Lisa

How She Discovered It: "Searching for an affordable replacement for the trendy overpriced version that kept targeting me on Instagram..." 

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "This fleece is slouchy chic with just the right amount of 'I borrowed it from my boyfriend' edge. It's one of my favorite winter staples to layer under puffer jackets or just sport solo while kicking it on my couch. Plus, people always mistake it for that pricier Instagram one ;)." 

MeroKeety Sherpa Fleece Patchwork Pullover With Pockets, $, available at Amazon

Electric Candle Lighter


Natalie

How She Discovered It: "Through Instagram."

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "Finally found a lighter that won't run out of fuel AND won't burn my fingers when I'm trying to spark up a burnt down candlewick."


haino Rechargeable Electric Arc Lighter, $, available at Amazon

Reusable Makeup Remover Cloths


Arlette

How She Discovered It: "A beauty shopping roundup."

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "Saves me so much money, I don't need to use disposable wipes anymore which have chemicals — and these are chemical-free! I just add water and then with a swift buff all my makeup comes off (including waterproof mascara). I've already bought this four times!"


Miracle Miracle Face Erase Makeup Remover Cloths (2 Pack), $, available at Amazon

Sterling Silver Cobra Earrings


Kate

How She Discovered It: "Searching for jewelry on Amazon — this brand has very interesting options at reasonable prices."

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "It's a hidden gem because the pieces feel like they are high quality but still super unique."


Wild Things Sterling Silver Cobra Hook Earrings, $, available at Amazon

Adult Drinking Card Game


Sarah

How She Discovered It: "After it went viral on Twitter."

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "It's HILLARIOUS... and gets you drunk!"

These Cards Will Get You Drunk These Cards Will Get You Drunk - Adult Card Game, $, available at Amazon

Portable Storage Drive


Rissa

How She Discovered It: "Youtube."

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "I like to travel as light as possible which is a little counterintuitive for a woman who edits video for a living. This little device is light, reliable and soooo necessary for anyone who makes content."


Samsung T5 Portable SSD, $, available at Amazon

No Sebum Mineral Powder


April

How She Discovered It: "I read about it on a website about products that help with oily skin."

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "It's one of the best products I have ever used. I've struggled with acne since I was 12. Now that I'm older, I've been trying to find products to help control it and the oiliness. I use acne medication, a good moisturizer, and then this on top. It keeps my skin so soft and helps with the oil perfectly. I can't recommend it enough!"


Innisfree No Sebum Mineral Powder, $, available at Amazon

Engraved Wooden Cutting Board


Eve

How She Discovered It: "List of ideas for personalized gifts."

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "I was searching for something a little nicer to gift my future in-laws at Christmas — and I knew even if they didn't use it to cook, they'd put it up on display."

Straga Products Olive Wreath Engraved Cutting Board, $, available at Amazon

Countertop Oven


Donna

How She Discovered It: "Youtube."

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "We purchased this when we got rid of our microwave. The many features this machine has rocks — and even though we typically only use a handful of them, they all work very well; the toast settings are super accurate and it has an awesome Rotisserie part so I can slow roast chicken. The only thing I miss about our old microwave is how quickly I could heat things up, but the pro of my food tasting better way outweighs that con. I highly recommend and love love love it!"


ConvectionWorks Hi-Q Intelligent Countertop Oven Set, $, available at Amazon

Terra Ties Biodegradable Hair Elastics


Courtney

How She Discovered It: "Heard about them from a friend who works in beauty!"

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "As someone who is constantly losing hair ties — seriously, where do they go?! — the thought of them collecting dust somewhere keeps me up at night. Enter: Terra Ties. They look and feel just like the drugstore black elastics you know, love, and seriously can’t keep misplacing, but are made of an entirely biodegradable blend of organic cotton and natural rubber. Even better, they don’t leave weird bends or creases in your hair, and the paperboard they arrive packaged in is also compostable. Freaking. Genius."

Terra Ties Biodegradable Elastic Hair Ties (27-Pack), $, available at Amazon

Soy-Wax Candle Giftset


Elizabeth

How She Discovered It: "Searching for housewarming gift ideas."

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "Easy housewarming gift for someone living with roommates! It's practical, makes the house smell nice, and no one has to claim direct ownership of it."

YINUO LIGHT Scented Candle Gift Set, 100% Natural Soy Wax, $, available at Amazon

Blonde & Silver Shampoo


Sloan

How She Discovered It: "My old deskmate told me about it and no other toning product compares."

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "It is SO cheap and it lasts so long and it works so well. I tried to find it in a beauty supply store and couldn't even find it, way to go Amazon you've got me. It works so well and I tell every blonde to use it."

Clairol Shimmer Lights Original Shampoo Blonde & Silver 8 oz., $, available at Amazon

100% Bamboo Shelf


Angelina

How She Discovered It: "I was searching for furniture that would help maximize the space in my tiny (and I mean really tiny) room in NYC."

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "I had a really odd indent in my room that created an extra 14 x 14 corner (if that makes sense) and I wanted to make the most of it! I couldn't find anything that was the correct dimensions and basically scoured all over until I found this standing storage rack. I know it says it's a bathroom rack but I think it looks pretty cute in a bedroom AND it was extremely easy to put together."

SONGMICS 100% Bamboo 4-Tier Shelf, $, available at Amazon

Colossus Duffle Bag


Nina

How She Discovered It: "While I was browsing Amazon for a new gym bag."

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "While this huge duffle bag is definitely WAY too big for the gym, something about its massive size and military-like design really spoke to me. It was also on sale, so I took a chance. The epic size was actually kind of perfect and allowed me to overpack just enough on a recent trip to Europe, where a variety of outfit changes was very crucial. Highly recommend!"

Condor Colossus Duffle Bag, $, available at Amazon

Reusable Bamboo Cotton Pads


Jessica

How She Discovered It: "I was looking for reusable pads that I could swap out my cotton rounds with (I'm very picky about cotton rounds — the ones I got from the drugstore always left random strands of cotton on my face!) So I googled and found these. At first, I ended up with ones that were nursing pads, but these are smaller and softer, IMO. "

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "I use these every day — sometimes two! They're great for taking off makeup with makeup remover, a quick cleanse with micellar water, or applying toner. I just toss them in a delicates bag and wash them with the rest of my laundry."

Wegreeco Reusable Bamboo Makeup Remover Pads, $, available at Amazon

Cable-Twist Boyfriend Cardigan


Maddie

How She Discovered It: "Cruising the web for an under-$50, top-rated slouchy sweater I could wear with and layer over just about anything."

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "The quality of this sweater is surprisingly high for the low price. Plus, it feels more unique than picking up this season's version from Zara or H&M along with everyone else. It's kinda like my grandma made it or my mom wore...but chic."

futurino Cable-Twist Long Boyfriend Cardigan, $, available at Amazon

Ruffled Swing Dress


Madeline

How She Discovered It: "My secret vice: the #founditonamazon hashtag."

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "It’s the perfect transitional dress, and obviously meant to be worn solo during the warmer months. When the temperature starts to drop, I’ll layer it over a turtleneck and jeans — the print isn’t too summery, so it won’t look out of season."

Mitilly Ruffled Swing Dress, $, available at Amazon

Natural Nutrient Boost Eye Serum


Candace

How She Discovered It: "Instagrammers."

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "Their Restore Eye Serum is the best eye product I've tried because it doesn't clump into white spots on my skin, unlike others."

akar skin Natural Nutrient Boost Eye Serum, $, available at Amazon

O'Keeffe's Foot Cream


Jacqui

How She Discovered It: "I have been using this foot cream for years."

Why It’s A Hidden Gem: "Cracked, dry feet are the worst, but this product WORKS. That's my short review but there are thousands of other positive reviews that go into way more detail."

O'Keeffe's Foot Cream, $, available at Amazon

Snake Print Boot


Lauren

How She Discovered It:
"I was searching for new snakeskin stamped boots for the fall."

Why It’s A Hidden Gem: "I had my eye on the Sam Edelman Walden snakeskin boots but they're $170. I was so happy to find a similar pair in stock online."

Carlos by Carlos Santana Snakeskin Ankle Boots (Vegan), $, available at Amazon

Perfume Bottle Shaped AirPods Case


Vanessa

How She Discovered It: "Looking for something to differentiate my air-pods from everyone else."

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "Cute and special design for an affordable price."

Volume & Curl Super Waterproof Mascara


Sarah

How She Discovered It: "Japanese makeup and skincare top 10 lists on a whole bunch of different makeup blogs I follow all gave this particular brand glowing reviews, so I had to check it out."

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "I have a fraught history with mascara, especially waterproof formulas. Drugstore mascara wands get gunky really fast and don't give me an even application. Higher-end brands aren't much better, plus they're exorbitantly expensive. Mascara removal sucks too. Those Almay pads people swear by? That Lancome formula? They're both oily as hell and I end up having to rub pretty hard to get my eye makeup off. BUT! This Heroine Make stuff? It comes off with a swipe of Pond's and lasts all day. The price is right, too. Bless up."

BAGGU Duck Bag Canvas Tote


Cristina

How She Discovered It: "I was searching for a new tote bag."

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "I love everything about it, the size, color and pattern, the material and the fact that as a tote bag, it's more robust and you can close it, so things don't drop out. It also comes in so many cool themes. "

Missha Aqua Sun Gel SPF 50


Serena

How She Discovered It: "My coworker gave me her 12 step skincare routine and this is by far one of my favorite recommendations."

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "I used to associate SPF with sticky, slimy and something that would clog my pores. But leaving the house without SPF on my face makes me feel like having intercourse without a condom. UNPROTECTED. This sunscreen feels almost like a serum that sinks right into the skin and doesn't smell like I just made out with a lifeguard."

Avarelle Acne Absorbing Cover Patch


Katie

How She Discovered It: "Surfing Amazon's indie-beauty scene."

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "As one reviewer said it best, these little patches are 'miracle workers.' Coming from someone with sensitive skin prone to additional flareups from using harsher acne-related formulas, this absolute hidden gem of a product caused no irritation whatsoever and actually soothed my skin while clearing up my blemish overnight. I'm a believer."

Ionic Hair Straightener Brush


Julia

How She Discovered It: "Prime Day Lightning Deal."

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "I bought this because I recently went up to a coworker and asked what the occasion for her blowout was. She then told me she just quickly used a heated brush that morning. Her hair looked amazing so I took advantage of Prime Day and bought this one. I am truly shocked by how well it works. I now use it almost every morning instead of a regular brush and it makes me just look that much more put together!"

Hoxis Pu Leather Tote


Erin

How She Discovered It: "Through R29's Instagram-like handbag story!"

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "I feel like the best Amazon finds are pieces that don't try and do too much, and this minimalist tote is a perfect example of that. I get so many compliments on how elegant it looks and no one can ever believe it's a faux leather bag that I snagged for under $20."

Mammoth Lint Roller


Libby

How She Discovered It: "Hilary Rhoda's Instagram (her husband is a neat-freak)."

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "I mean, it's a giant lint roller! Enough said! It's especially helpful on my cowhide rug (vs. dealing with it getting sucked into vacuum) and it takes half the time to de-lint my coats/sweaters. I love it so much — by far my favorite Amazon purchase!"

Mammoth Extra Large Lint Roller, 2 Rollers and 2 Refills, $, available at Amazon

Makeup Sponge Blender Set 


Kellie

How She Discovered It: "I was looking for an alternative to the Beauty Blender, and these were highly reviewed and so cheap, I just had to try them."

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "Under $2 a sponge vs $20 for the beauty blender and I like it better! I went back to the beauty blender for a day when I ran out of these sponges and I didn’t like it anymore! I’m never spending $20 on a sponge again!"

Scalp Massager & Exfoliating Brush


Loreto

How She Discovered It: "On one of my late-night Amazon rabbit holes."

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "I was looking for a dandruff solution when I came upon this gem. All the other options seemed to only work for a couple of weeks before the silicon brushes would break, so I took a chance on this brush and it’s completely changed my life! Every time I wash my hair and use this brush my scalp feels so clean, and it does a better job than my fingers ever will, plus it’s helped remove my dandruff almost to nothing. I truly appreciate this product."

100% Pure Hyaluronic Acid


Carey

How She Discovered It: "Searching on Amazon."

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "I add three drops of this to my expensive serums and creams and it extends the life and adds moisture. Lasts forever and is inexpensive. Game changer!"

36-Pack Of Assorted Velvet Scrunchies


Kara

How She Discovered It: "My heart skipped a beat when I came across this scrunchie gold mine on 'Recommended For You' page. (What can I say? Amazon knows me very well.)"

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "Not only do you now have a scrunchie for every outfit, you can theoretically go a full month (plus about an extra week) without repeating a. single. one. Plus, at $14, each one comes out to less than 50 cents each. (!!)"

Reusable Storage Bags


Megan

How She Discovered It: "Searching for a sustainable alternative to plastic ziplock baggies...a pack of those things used to fly off my cabinet shelves like hotcakes."

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "These eco-friendly storage solutions aren't only ideal for saving leftovers and snacks, but they're also perfect pouches for keeping everything from loose change to vitamins and makeup essentials organized inside a chaotic purse or gym bag."

Sheer Soft Cup Bra


Jacqui

How She Discovered It: "I took a punt one day cause I was Googling mesh bras and stumbled upon this one. I am never not wearing this bra."

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "It is literally the best bra known to man, super cheap and the best material ever."

All-Day Liquid Eyeliner


Karina

How She Discovered It: "Before I started working in beauty, I heavily researched every makeup purchase I made, whether I was shopping at the drugstore or Sephora. This Maybelline liquid eyeliner pen was one of my earlier purchases, but years later, I keep coming back to it because it's just that good. Plus, if I ever forgot to pack my eyeliner when traveling, I'll always know it's a solid pick for an emergency shopping trip."

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "It can be intimidating at first, but once you get the hang of it, a felt-tip liquid eyeliner is like the little black dress of beauty products. It makes a chic, clean statement worn by itself, but also compliments virtually any eyeshadow look you're going for. And as the name aptly points out, the tip is super precise, which allows me to create a barely-there wing or go more dramatic with the shape. In other words, it's the perfect drugstore liquid eyeliner."

Velvet Tufted Headboard


Rebecca

How She Discovered It: "I really wanted an Anthropologie channel tufted bed when I moved into my first apartment, but I also wanted to stay within my budget so I tried to find a similar look elsewhere. I looked on several home furniture sites until I decided to give Amazon a go. I found this adjustable headboard right away and it looks just as good as the $700+ ones I had wanted earlier."

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "There were so many cute color options (I went with the light blue, but I loved the blush as well), it was easy to attach to my bed, it's very sturdy, and I got the look I wanted for my room for a really great price."

Ice Roller


Stephanie

How She Discovered It: "The girls in my office found these for a Palm Springs' bachelorette weekend to use as hangover remedies."

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "They loved them so much that we ended up stocking them in our office freezer for 3 p.m. pick me ups and early morning meetings! A game changer in 45 seconds — also helpful for feeling refreshed if you have to head straight from the office to after-work plans."

Ceramic Lip Ashtray


Cait

How She Discovered It: "Last year, I started noticing funky, sculptural ashtrays seemed to suddenly be everywhere (thanks legalization!) and I wanted to buy one. I have a weird obsession with lip motifs and saw something similar to this somewhere else, but for much more money. I searched around and couldn't believe how inexpensive this one was. It looks very high-quality IRL!"

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "It definitely adds a little extra oomph to my coffee table. Even if you don't smoke, it's perfect for storing jewelry or other odds and ends in, and it's a great conversation piece."

Black High-Waist Leggings


Casey

How She Discovered It: "Trial & error + lots of Amazon comments section trolling."

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "This pair of leggings passes the see-through squat test in flying colors. No underwear showing here! They are super matte and on the thicker side which I like. I also like how high they are on the waist for indoor cycling so everything stays comfortably in place. Bonus: lots of pockets which is a take it or leave it for me personally but a bonus for runners etc."

Cat-Eye Sunglasses


Marissa

How She Discovered It: "In a Refinery29 story that I researched and wrote. Hi, hello, yes, I work here."

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "I have finally accepted that I'm a serial loser of sunglasses. After my favorite pair of CĂ©line sunnies — that I owned all of one (!) year — disappeared into thin air, I said, never again. No longer will I spend money on an item that I can't trust myself to keep track of even if said item is perched on my head. These cat-eye sunnies are cheap and light. The lens quality is meh but they are so cute and fit every face that tries them on — even my own little head, as exhibited in this selfie with Amazon shades. If/when I lose these sunglasses I will buy another pair and feel good that the person who finds them will hopefully enjoy them too.

Cotton Ruffle Socks


Ruby

How She Discovered It: "I was browsing for interesting socks, like always! And am always on the hunt for high-cotton blends that don't feel cheapy."

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "I mostly wear loafers and oxfords, which I love pairing with skirts or cropped pants and kooky socks or colorful socks, and this six-pack of cute ankle socks was a no-brainer!"

Retro '90s High-Cut One-Piece


Amanda

How She Discovered It: "Read about it on Apple News."

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "I've been looking for the perfect high-cut/low-back swimsuit and never expected the one I finally like the most was from Amazon. And I looked at a lot and tried A LOT on. That's probably how this one found me. The algorithm knew I was on the hunt! The quality and fit are spot on and it looks cute paired with denim shorts too.

Diamond Wedding Ring


Kristyn

How She Discovered It: "So this is a similar style ring - I can't find my exact ring. But, it was given to me on Christmas eve when I got engaged :) My main stone is 1.6 ctw "very good" quality diamond and I think was around 4k he never told me the exact amount."

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "My husband and I both really enjoy deal shopping — it's one of our pastimes haha so he knew I'd have no issues with him getting a great deal on my ring — I just wanted to be married! It's an antique-style setting and really fits my style so I immediately fell in love with it. Once we got it appraised it was valued at a lot more than he paid — like 7k more! It came with an appraisal certificate that was already more than he paid but we took it to a reputable jeweler who went NUTS for it and appraised it even higher. Jewelers especially often ask me if its a family heirloom because they say it's beautifully crafted. I love it so much i choose to wear it on my right hand because I don't want a band taking any attention away from the details on the sides."

White Marble Ring-Holder


Sarah

How She Discovered It: "I was looking for something on-trend and unique to display my many rings. Something that was also stylish and looks good on my vanity."

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "This is one of those items that you didn't know you needed until you had one. I absolutely love that its made of solid marble. It feels good to hold and is an affordable way to add some marble accent to my home. I use it every day to hold my engagement ring when I'm not wearing it. I've also gifted this many friends and they all loved it! It's a small and lovely gift that I've given for engagement parties, bridal showers, coworkers, etc."

Pearl Hairclips


Sasha

How She Discovered It: "I was searching for cute, cheap hair clips after seeing an influencer wearing them."

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "Hair clips are all over Instagram right now and these are the perfect detail to get the look for an affordable price."

Wig Tape


Katherine

How She Discovered It: "Years ago when I was a fashion assistant, the stylist I was assisting used it on a photoshoot to keep shirts and makeshift hems in place."

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "This wig tape is cheaper, stronger, and more reliable than the traditional 'fashion tape.' Works like a charm to make sure blouses don't gape and garments stay in the right place when there's lots of movement on set. It's great for swim shoots too. It's one of my many secret weapons I keep stocked in my styling kit."

Face-Mask Collection


Sally

How She Discovered It: "Browsing around!"

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "Less than 2 dollars per sheet mask. Plus they feel amazing after putting them in the fridge for a couple minutes."

Organic Cotton Maxi Pads


Andrea

How She Discovered It: "I went to Amazon and typed in, 'organic cotton maxi pads,' and voila."

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "I wanted organic cotton pads that don't have any scent or extra chemicals. I also think they're more comfortable than that sort of plastic-y texture that can give me a rash and just be plain gross. These are 100% organic, USDA-certified, non-GMO, and made in the USA without the use of toxins, pesticides, or synthetic chemicals. Also, I know I am a grown woman and like, who gives an F, but there is something appealing about getting a package of maxi pads delivered discreetly to your door than carrying it home in a flimsy see-through bag. Now that I know I like these, I ordered an economy pack so I don't have to worry about it for a while."

Cute Portable Mini Vacuum


Rebecca

How She Discovered It: "I discovered it in the shuk while I was living in Tel Aviv. When I moved to NY I needed one for my new apartment so I searched on Amazon and voila! Now every person who comes to our apartment asks where it's from and we give them out as gifts. We probably have at least 5 of them stocked in our closet right now."

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "It's just so useful! We keep it on our coffee table and use it at least once a night after we eat by the tv or have company over."

Affordable Formal Dress


Arianna

How She Discovered It: "I was going to a black-tie wedding and didn't want to spend a lot of money on a dress, and I had an Amazon gift card so...I googled formal dresses on Amazon and found one with rave reviews. A lot of girls mentioned using it as a bridesmaid dress!"

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "I only paid $40 for it, I got a lot of compliments on it AND have turned multiple people onto the same dress, so a lot of my friends own it as well."

Trendy Down Jacket


Ashleigh

How She Discovered It: "On a social media feed."

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "It is the best winter coat I have ever had. It's warm enough for the cold winters and trendy enough for my hip Brooklyn neighborhood. I own the grey one and always get so many compliments on it. My first response is always 'Thanks! I got it on Amazon!'"

Facial Cleansing Oil


Sasha

How She Discovered It: "Got deep into the cleansing oil craze and went down an Amazon Prime rabbit hole to find the best buy."

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "This stuff is seriously just as good if not better than the Josie Maran one. It's bigger, less expensive, and I can order it to my doorstep next-day with Prime. My skin has never looked better and it's such a nourishing replacement for the harsher foaming washes I was using before that would dry out and irritate my skin."

Leather Passport Holder


Amanda

How She Discovered It: "I was looking for a Christmas gift that I could give to all of my aunts."

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "It looks and feels great, and the marbled motif is very pretty. Because all of my family will be traveling for my wedding next year, this was a cute and fun way to thank the girls in our group."

Mini Succulent Diffuser


Lou

How She Discovered It: "During an internet deep-dive, searching for all things succulent themed."

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "I, unfortunately, am a green-thumbless millennial living in the fabulous age of Plant Queens — so, this little essential oil, reed diffuser that's shaped like a succulent is the perfect solution for a stylish desk accessory that I cannot kill."

Cooling Under-Eye Masks


Anna

How She Discovered It: "Searching for allergy season essentials."

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "These cooling gel strips are honestly my spring through summer lifesavers when allergy season kicks in and my under-eyes start looking like something out of a zombie movie."

LED-Light Baseball Cap


Mia

How She Discovered It: "Amazon search: 'dog poop solutions.'"

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "I bought this as a present for my dad. He always walks our dog at night and the backyard and neighborhood is awfully dark. It's hard to hold a flashlight AND pick up dog poop, so this hat offers a very special solution. Dad loved it and so did Skippy."

Soft Long-Sleeve Tee


Rose

How She Discovered It: "I was browsing through Amazon and saw it."

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "It’s SUCH a good quality shirt for every day. It’s super soft and I wear it practically every day with leggings and it never stretches out or wears."

A Padded Headband


Jen

How She Discovered It: "I wanted a padded headband but wasn't sure about committing to the trend so I didn't want to spend too much."

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "It took a moment to get it — maybe about two weeks — so I was relieved when it came. In the end it was exactly what I wanted. It was good quality and packaged nicely and even came with a note from the seller based in the UK. I have a smaller head and it fits perfectly atop. It's exactly the look I was going for."

Over-The-Knee Boots


Sheridan

How She Discovered It: "I ordered these boots myself after watching a few YouTube video reviews. I will scour the internet for hours watching video reviews. These boots received nothing but great product reviews and recommendations."

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "I’m a personal style consultant. I had a client that wanted my recommendations for Black OTK boots that were comfortable, stylish and wouldn’t break the bank. These boots are spot-on and a dupe for any luxury designer OTK boot."

Stylish Coffee Table


Corrie

How She Discovered It: "I was looking for coffee tables."

Why It's A Hidden Gem: "It holds a lot of stuff which is really useful in my tiny apartment. I can store things in it for my living room where I am lacking storage. It is also very clean and neat looking. The style goes perfectly with my west elm couch and looks much higher-end than it is. "

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