My Favorite Things {2020}

Happy Saturday, friends! I’ve been wanting to get My Favorite Things post out for a while, and today’s the day. This will be my third year doing one of these, and they’re always fun.

And yes, I’m borrowing the picture from last year. I’m too lazy to create a new one, and this works just fine.

I tend to be very product loyal, and I’m still using and loving most of the items from My Favorite Things of the past couple of years, but I want this list to be fresh so I tried to come up with things I discovered this year.

These aren’t all products… some are services or habits. Also, there is no organization or order to this list. It’s just a mish-mosh… kind of like my brain right about now. Ha!

Also, in the spirit of the original maven of the Favorite Things list — Oprah Winfrey, of course — I’ve got a little giveaway tucked away at the end of the post.

Okay, let’s get this party started!

SLIP Pure Silk Adult Pleated Face Covering

at Nordstrom // at Revolve // 25% off at Bloomies

I figured it was appropriate to start out this year’s My Favorite Things list with a face mask… ah 2020… you are a buggar, you are!

I really hope we won’t have to wear masks for much longer, but in the meantime, these SLIP silk face masks are my favorite. These are as comfortable as a mask gets, plus they’re sort of luxe looking… if you can say such a thing about a mask. I have two, and they’re pretty much all I wear, except if they’re both dirty or I forget them, and then I grab one of the paper masks I keep in the car.

Yes, they are expensive, but I’ve been using the two I have for months, and they wash up great. The cost per wear is basically nill at this point.

Apple AirPods

at Target // at Amazon // at Walmart

I know I’ve talked about these a lot, I think they’re in several of my gift guides, but I had to include them in this list because I’ve used them SO much this year. At first, I thought they were a silly extravagance, and I was sure I’d lose them within the first month.

But one day, it occurred to me one day how ridiculous it was that all three of my kids had these nifty wireless AirPods, and I was running with wires dangling from my ears to the phone in my hand, so I ordered myself a pair of AirPods, and I’ve been using them almost daily ever since.

30 Days of Yoga with Adriene

on YouTube

I discovered Yoga with Adrienne back in the spring, when we were on lockdown and I wasn’t able to work out with my trainer. Plus, I was dealing with that hip injury and not able to run. I needed something to do for strength and flexibility, so I started 30 Days of Yoga with Adriene, at the recommendation of some of you.

It was great for a beginner, and I like how she isn’t too much into the meditation and those aspects of Yoga, it was more about building strength and flexibility and taking some time to relax… which is something I need desperately. I don’t relax well, lol!

I fell off the wagon during the summer, but I plan to get back to it after the holidays. Now that I’m running and lifting again, I feel like yoga will help me with the flexibility and relaxation that I’m sorely lacking.

S’well Water Bottles

at Nordstrom // at Amazon // at Walmart

I’ve tried them all, and these are my favorites because of the smaller mouth opening than some. It’s big enough to fill easily and slip an ice cube in if you need to, but not so big that you slosh water all over yourself when you go to take a sip and someone hits a bump in the road… or is that just me?

I don’t like to mess with straws and snap-open lids and all that jazz. Just an easy screw-on top, thank you very much! Plus, they’re good quality stainless, and they clean up easily. (I do recommend investing in a soft bottle cleaning brush.)

The 17-oz is my favorite size because it fits into a standard sized cupholder.

Billie Razors

get the Starter Kit for $9

I included the Billie Razor in last year’s Favorite Things list, but I kind of tacked them on at the end, and I’ve since done a full review and taken some good pictures, so I wanted to include them here.

Plus, I was fairly new to the product last year at this time, but I’ve continued to use and love my Billie Razor subscription throughout 2020, so now I can wholeheartedly endorse it.

Since I did explain it all in this post, I won’t reiterate it all here, but suffice it to say, this is an affordable and effective razor, and the subscription plan is so convenient. I’m never going back to drugstore razors!

colorescience Total EyeTM 3-in-1 Renewal Therapy SPF 35

at Dermstore // at Nordstrom // at Amazon

I’ve talked about this product a lot, but I couldn’t NOT include it in this post because it’s SO good. I have under-eye bags that do not respond to much, but this product actually seems to make a difference.

It’s a tinted mineral sunscreen, anti-aging eye cream, and color corrector all in one. I like it so much, I’ve gone ahead and done the subscribe and save plan at Dermstore. I wear the color Fair.

There are actually tons of new makeup and skincare products I’ve tried recently that have become some of my favorite things, but I don’t want to go overboard with all of them. Maybe I should just list Angie’s Hot & Flashy YouTube channel as one of my favorite things!

Here are a few more things I found through her that I’m using and loving right now:

Elemis Cleansing Balm

35% off at Elemis // at Nordstrom // at Amazon

Okay, I know I said I didn’t want to include items that were in last year’s Favorite Things, BUT!!! The Elemis Cleansing Balm is 35% off again, for TODAY ONLY!

I totally put it in my cart over Black Friday weekend and forgot to check out… that happens more times than you would believe… So today I just checked on it, to see if I’d actually ordered it (I hadn’t) and I saw this sale. YEEHAW!!!! You better believe I didn’t forget to check out this time.

I’ve tried a few cleansing balms, and I like them all, but this one is my favorite. It cleans as well or better than any, and it just smells so heavenly.

philosophy Renewed Hope in a Jar Peeling Mousse

at Ulta

Okay, last beauty product, but I wanted to mention this because it’s one thing I discovered on my own, haha! This is a gentle exfoliant you can use several times a week, and it makes your face feel so soft and smooth afterwards.

Victoria Emerson Bracelets

at Victoria Emerson

Attica boho cuff

These bracelets have fast become my favorites for quality fashion jewelry that adds a little bling to my going-out looks. I’ve always been a bracelet girl, I think it’s because it’s one of the only pieces of jewelry you can actually see when you’re wearing it… think about it!

I have some nicer ones from Lagos and Yurman, that I wear on the daily because they’re so lovely and understated, but I love Victoria Emerson boho cuffs and wrap bracelets for those times when I want some extra bling. Also, they’re actually BOGO free right now with free shipping on orders over $50.

Vuori Joggers

at Vuori Clothing // at Nordstrom

Vuori (and Covid) have turned me into a joggers girl. I was never much of a fan, at least not for street clothes, mainly because joggers don’t tend to be very flattering, and I felt like a schlump wearing them.

Well, enter Vuori! Their performance joggers feel AH-mazing, so silky soft. The 25″ inseam is the perfect length (for me) — almost, but not quite cropped, and they have a slim fit that fits loosely without being schlumpy.

I did find myself needing to size up to a M in these, by the way. I also have the performance zip front hoodie (size S) that I wear a lot to and from my workouts. It’s made of the same silky soft fabric as the joggers, and the contrasting drawstring and zip front closure are nice details.

I recently added a pair of elevation performance leggings to my Vuori collection.

I’m telling you, these leggings are a whole other level of softness. They’re also nice and thick, and they stay put when I run. I’m officially a Vuori fan! (I have a M in the leggings as well.)

P448 Sneakers

at Nordstrom // at Zappo’s // at Evereve

If Vuori turned me into a joggers girl, P448 turned me into a sneaker girl… Well, I guess Veja did that, but I don’t reach for them that much anymore because my P448s are so comfortable, and they add a little extra pizzaz to my simple everyday looks.

Their designs don’t stay in stock for long, and both pairs I have are pretty much gone, but they’re always coming out with new ones.

My only complaint is that they aren’t very consistent with sizing. I have a 38 in one pair and a 39 in the other, so if I order any in the future, I’ll probably order both sizes and return the one that doesn’t work.

VariDesk Standing Desk Converter

at Amazon

Paul helped me select this standing desk converter last February when I was struggling from lower back and glute issues, assumably from sitting at my desk too much. (He works in IT and has set up lots of workstations in his time.)

I love how I can raise and lower it and basically get the best of both worlds. I’m currently standing here, working, and thanking my lucky stars once again that Paul hooked me up with this desk.

Hercules Tuff Charging Station for Multiple Devices

at Amazon

Pardon the dust… I think those tablets have been there a while! But if you have a household with multiple phones and tablets that always need charging, this little charging station is a life-saver. It comes with cables compatible with iPhones and iPads, plus a Type-C Cable, and a Micro-USB cable, and you can order more of whatever kind you need.

I love how it keeps everything in one spot, and the blue light turns on when a device is charging.

Intermittent Fasting

By far and away, the biggest change I made to my lifestyle and daily habits in 2020 was adopting Intermittent Fasting as a lifestyle. I could write an entire post about how it’s changed my life, and I probably will at some point, but I don’t want that topic to overwhelm this post, so I’ll just leave it at this.

After a lifetime of yo-yo dieting, stressing over food, and trying to maintain a healthy weight without denying myself the foods and social events I enjoy most, I feel like I’m finally free. It’s the most wonderful, liberating feeling, and I highly recommend it to anyone who has similar struggles.

My favorite resource is Gin Stephen’s latest book: Fast, Feast, Repeat. And if you want a more scientific approach, written by a doctor, The Obesity Code by Jason Fung is a good followup.

Functional Medicine Formulations Probiotics

at DrRuscio.com

I hesitate to mention this because I am certainly not qualified to give medical or health advice, and I’m typically very skeptical of supplements, but I started having issues with, ahem… regularity. Nothing was working, and I was getting desperate.

Someone who reads this blog (hi Liane!) recommended Dr. Ruscio to me, and I started poking around on his website, and I found these probiotics. He explains why they are all 3 important and how he formulated them. I hemmed and hawed because I am HORRIBLE about remembering to take pills, but I finally got desperate and figured it couldn’t hurt to try them.

Well, they totally turned my digestive issues around. Like, immediately. the DAY I took them for the first time, I noticed a difference, and I’ve been taking them faithfully ever since. If I miss a couple days, things start to get funky, and I get right back on track. I have them on auto-order so I don’t run out.

I’ve also added Zinc, Vitamin C, and Vitamin D to my daily regimen, and I’m pretty good about taking them as well, now that I’m in the habit of taking pills. I leave them on the counter in the decorative tray pictured above.

*** Please note, these are NOT affiliate links, and I do not have ANY relationship with this doctor, nor do I receive any benefit from telling you about them. He doesn’t even know I’m linking to them. I just want to share because so many people suffer from digestive issues, and I’ve found these to make a huge difference in my quality of life, so I want to share.

My Kitchen Makeover

Okay, this is a silly one, but as I was waiting for my coffee to brew this morning, I was looking around my kitchen, and I realized at this time last year, it was still brown. Isn’t it funny how you wait so long to get to a home project and then when it’s done, you hardly remember what it looked like before?

We started this project last January, and finished up RIGHT before Covid took our area into lockdown for several months. The timing could not have been any more perfect. You can read all about it in THIS POST.

My favorite part is of the makeover is that gorgeous quartzite countertop. It was a splurge, but it brings me so much joy. On the other hand, we saved a few pennies (and a lot of stress) by having our cabinets painted rather than replacing them, as I was tempted to do.

That turned out to be incredibly fortuitous because had we torn the kitchen apart for a full reno, we would have never finished before the lockdown, and I shudder to think the state of affairs we would have been living in had that happened. First world problems, for sure, but I’m so grateful that was not the case.

In Summary + A Giveaway!

I will wrap up this post by saying, I realize how incredibly blessed I am to be able to round up this list of things I love and enjoy.

It hasn’t been an easy year. I’ve had a myriad of pesky health issues to deal with, we lost my father-in-law and my grandfather, we gained and lost a precious puppy that has a piece of our hearts forever… and, of course, Covid.

And yet, here I stand in my beautiful home, with all my people happy and healthy and under one roof, and a job I love. I know how very blessed I am.

Thank YOU ALL for being here, because I wouldn’t be doing this without YOU.

And in that vein, I want to give you a gift this year.

I wish I could give you ALL a gift, but I can only select FIVE. I wanted to keep this simple, so I’m stealing this idea from a fellow blogger: all you have to do to register to win, is SIGN UP HERE for my email newsletter. (If you’re already signed up, you are already entered to win!)

In my newsletter, you receive a newsy note with a link to my most recent blog post(s), along with exclusive newsletter content like special sales, my newest favorite finds, and an occasional peek behind the scenes — all delivered right to your inbox.

I will randomly select FIVE people on Saturday, 12/19/20, to win a $100 gift card to the retailer of your choice, and I’ll announce the winners in Saturday’s email.

That’s it! Good luck!

This post contains affiliate links. When you shop through my links, it helps support my business (at no additional cost to you) so thank you!

Join The Conversation

81 Responses

  1. Merry Christmas to you and your family. Thank you for the work that you do. Yours is the first email I read every morning when I wake up, not just for style help but I love your honesty and thoughtfulness. I truly feel like you are the girlfriend I have never met. May the Lord Bless you and Keep you in the coming year. 

  2. Merry Christmas!  My list of favorite things would include your blog!  It is my favorite and I look forward to reading it every day!  

  3. Such a fun post JoLynne!  I would reuse that cover photo too…it’s perfect.  Thank you for keeping us cute! Merry Christmas to you and yours. 🎄🎄🎄

  4. Jolynne, thank you for sharing your fashion expertise. I look forward to reading your blog every day! Merry Christmas to you and your family. 🎄

  5. I don’t know how I fell upon your blog a few years back but so glad I did.  And thanks for turning me onto Angie, premium jeans, Gin Stephens which have been game changers for me. 

  6. Fun to see that I have started to do IF and Yoga with Adriene because of you. (I have missed some days, but I aim for 4-5 days a week, and I have done several of her 30 days, and I am now doing her December calendar.)
    Your kitchen makeover has given me some ideas for the kitchen in our new house. Definitely thinking of doing our island cabinet in a dark blue or some kind, with the rest of the kitchen in white cabinets, white subway tile, with gray grout. It does help to have a contractor for a husband. He can see how things will look; I am not good at that at all, but seeing your kitchen makes it more real for me.
    We also joined the wine club you recommended (not in this post), and we really like the wines we have received.
    I love reading your posts. You are more informative than any other blogger I follow – really give the positives, negatives, ins and outs. My budget is different than yours, but with your narrative, I can copy a lot of what you do at some lower price points. I look forward to your posts every day!
    May the holidays bring us all some joy during this difficult time.

  7. Thank you once again for all the hard work that you put into this blog day after day. You are thankful for us but we are very thankful for you ! Hope and your family have a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year! You need to take some much deserved time off and let your issues heal. 😀 Take Care

  8. Thank you for all you do for us with fashion and all the other added things. You are so real and like a friend I’ve never met. Such a generous giveaway. Love your list today. I had a question about the supplements. First the probiotics. I too tried them but they made my stomache too gasey so I quit…..Formula highly recommended by my naturopath. My daughter said it happened to her until her body adjustER. Did you have to adjust? Then about the zinc, Vit. C and D. How did you know amount daily you take? I’m terrible about supplements too but all 3 of these are good for immune health with covid around. I do take two B vitamins as good for my migraines. Have a great weekend. Wish things were more open for holiday events. Missing that. 

    1. I don’t remember having that issue especially but I kind of always have that problem, ha! Was it this exact brand you were taking?

      I just take the recommended dosage on the Vit C, D, and Zinc. You can always ask your doc, though.

  9. Your list of favourite things is very similar to my list!  I wanted to share with you that your success with intermittent fasting is what encouraged me to give it a try.  I finally bit the bullet and started in April after reading “The Obesity Code” about 3 times.  I’ve lost 60 lbs and have another 20 lbs to go to reach my ultimate goal.  It is now coming off slowly but I have no doubt I will get there.  I have found a freedom with food that I always thought was possible, just not for me.  It is an amazing feeling to enjoy food and not stress about it anymore.  So thank you for sharing your journey – it really has changed my life!  🙂

  10. PS is the yoga thing you do free? How do you access it? I use to do a class years ago but once instructor quit I didn’t get back to it. Haven’t been motivated to do by myself but need to get moving more. 

  11. Thank you for the mention! Dr. Ruscio is amazing. I was fortunate to have met him in person on the last March day (I think it was a Friday) before our state/county shut down the following Monday. Of all your favs I think he’s mine too because I believe he changed my life as well. 

    For readers in the Austin area, he has left California as part of the massive San Francisco Bay Area exodus and is now in Austin. Where we plan to remove to as well. 

    Something he recommended to me was also intermittent fasting. I follow a fairly strict way of eating that still has a lot of variety-I’m never bored. I just quit all sugars and gluten grains and histamine foods. It was those that were doing me in. I miss my 🍷 and my 🧀 but I feel so much better. 

    I found trying to keep carbs really low and intermittent fasting has prevented me from gaining any pandemic pounds!  Not eating anything commercially prepared helps. Snacking is a bit harder if you have to prepare the food from scratch!  His diet as recommended in the book is how I stay in a size 8. 

    So if I could be so bold, I’d have to say Dr Ruscio’s book is tops on my favs this year. I recommend the hard cover version because you will want to write in it. I bought the kindle version first and as all ebook readers know you can’t print from those apps. So I bought the book. Amazon has it. 

    — Liane

  12. Like Mary, my favorite things would include YOUR blog. Although I do not always read it, I do always skim it. We joke in our home that I need an extra job to support my “Jolynne” habit. Yes, I buy a lot from your posts :)! Not sure how you strength train, since I do not read everything, but look up Heather Robertson on Youtube. Her workouts are free and effective. 

  13. Thank you for all that you do and for being you! I echo what the other ladies have already said: you are a friend we have never met 😃
    Your honesty, transparency and “keeping it real” makes your blog heads and shoulders above others. I look forward to escaping our day to day reality and reading your posts. We have more and more restrictions which feels heavy and depressing, esp at this time of year. Your blog helps. Merry Christmas to you and yours! Thank you for the gift card give away too – thats really nice!

  14. Merry Christmas to you and your family Jo-Lynne! Thank you for the inspiration I find in your daily email. I love your shopping suggestions, and you help me find time to take care of myself. Wish you continued health and happiness

  15. Thank you for your wonderful blog. I follow several blogs and yours is my favorite. You are so good at explaining why you like something or why it works. Enjoyed today’s post and plan to try a couple of the items. Merry Christmas to you and your family.

  16. I love reading your blog. It’s like talking to a friend. And especially this year when I had been WFH and live by myself.

    Yesterday I got P448’s on sale for less than $100 at a local department store (leftover small size). Never would have tried them on except for your mentioning them. Love them….but we got 6 inches of snow last night so have to wait to wear them out.
    I did read The Obesity Code this summer. It was hard to get into but once I did, very good. I have only made small changes (no snacking, 12 hour fasting) and feel so much better.

    Thank you for what you do. I think it’s even more important than ever now to keep normalcy and connection.

    1. What a great bargain! Glad you snapped those up. And also that you found The Obesity Code helpful. Mind blown, right? It makes so much sense, once you think about it. I’m so happy my blog has been a source of community and connection for you during this isolation. Here’s to a happy, healthy, and more normal 2021!

  17. Wishing you and your family peace and joy this holiday season! I have been following you for a few years now and truly enjoy posts! Thank you so much!!

  18. Loved this post, in fact I will probably go through it again tomorrow. Thank you for opening your heart,, style and family to us. What a year it’s been but so nice to have my favorite bloggers to look forward to everyday.  

  19. Thank you for all you do. We (your loyal readers) appreciate the care you put into this blog and for creating a space that allows us to all feel like friends who’ve never met. Thank YOU. What a gift for us all to enjoy. Happy Holidays! 🎄 

  20. Thanks for all you do!  I stumbled across your blog several years ago and have been a faithful follower ever since. I have followed many of your recommendations so I think I’ll give the yoga a try! Thanks for the opportunity to win a gift card! Merry Christmas to you and your family!! 

  21. I love the picture of you with the gift. So fun! 

    I’m finished my shopping but I might need the charging station. Santa, maybe? 🤔

    Thank you for introducing me to intermittent fasting. I’m losing very slowly but at least the scales are going in the right direction. 

  22. You have some fun things listed here that I may have to try out. Thank you for sharing. I also love your kitchen remodel!

  23. I don’t know how many of your readers can claim their husband knows as much about Jo Lynne as she does, but mine does 😁! Each night when I read your blog I make sure to share something with him from it  – and I always share your beautiful photos, especially those with clothing I want LOL. Somehow he takes the hint and I often get surprises from him that are things you have featured…so THANKS for having great taste and for taking the time to share with us all. I look forward to a healthy and happy 2021 for you & yours! 

  24. Like many others have said, you are like a friend to me and your blog is my favourite. Your honest, down-to-earth nature is what is so appealing and I look forward to your email / blog post every day. Thank you for all that you do.

  25. I love today’s post! Thanks for sharing so many favorites all in one place. I love your fashion ideas, but also enjoy your daily life stories. I am so grateful for finding you in cyber world 5 years ago. May you find joy in these last weeks of Advent as we await the birth of Christ. 

  26. What a fun post! If my AirPods broke today, I’d buy a new pair. I use them to talk on the phone– I clean when it’s going to be a long conversation! And I use them when I walk to listen to books or podcasts.
    A question on Dr. R’s supplements, Jo-Lynne. I noticed on the website that one of the 3 recommended probiotics says it needs to be refrigerated after opening. Do you refrigerate yours? It’s hard enough for me to remember to take supplements, but having to go to the refrigerator to get them might be my undoing. I was thinking about giving them a try for a month.

    1. LOL, I hear ya there! I do refrigerate them, and I was also afraid they’d get lost and I’d forget about them, but I have them on the door where I can see them easily, and the family is instructed not to move them. Also, I start to get some weird reflux symptoms when I don’t take them, and that reminds me.

  27. Even though I am a day late reading this post, I’m so glad I did.  I am definitely going to check out the DrRuscio products and the charging station.  Your dressed up kitchen is so pretty, and I’m glad that you are enjoying it.

  28. I love this post! I always find something new to try – or see how others might be using something I already have/use, in a way I never expected. 2020 has definitely been challenging but I, for one, have been able to maintain my sanity by reading posts from my favorite bloggers – such as yours! Thank you for all you do to bring us the latest fashion with a side of wit…or at least I find you witty! 🙂 Keep your chin up and keep the great content coming!

  29. Love this post! I’m a long time follower, and your blog has been such a bright spot for me this past trying year. Thank you for sharing your thoughts with us on everything from teen rearing during this difficult year to focusing on the bright side. I also really appreciate your in depth analysis of the products you feature. The details you provide really do make a difference and set you apart from others. You are appreciated!

  30. What a fun list!  Thank you for putting it together. I echo other commenters in that I enjoy reading your blog daily (who said blogs are dead?!) and feel like you’re a friend writing to me.  We’re similar age and have similar age kids and I really like reading about what’s going on in your life and have gotten some great fashion ideas from you. Thanks for sharing!
    I love yoga with Adriene too. I don’t know how I found her but have done a few of her 30 day challenges and they alway make me feel so good.  Her January one has been a yearly thing with me and I just signed up for 2021. It’s always great!  Thanks for the great giveaway !

    1. Thanks for the heads-up. Maybe I’ll try her new one, rather than going back to the original again. I really liked how it’s geared for beginners, b/c I don’t know any of the moves or the terminology. Are the new ones as beginner-friendly?

  31. I just commented but forgot to ask – if you happen to see that cleanser on sale again, can you share it with us?  I’m catching up on emails from yesterday so missed the sale but would like to try it.  Do you like it better than Colleen Rothschild? 

    1. Definitely! I will try to catch it. I like both, and I can never really decide which I like better so I switch back and forth. I guess I like the Elemis a little better, and I definitely like their cloths better.

  32. Thanks so much for your hard work! I enjoy how well written  your posts are. I know exactly how items fit just based on the descriptions & measurements you give. I’m very small but can still adjust my sizes to fit me based on your posts. My favorite pants of 2020 are the Caslon utility pants. And that Barefoot dreams Circle Cardigan is amazing! Wishing you & your family a fun Christmas. Wondering if that’s what your kids would enjoy? Mine are older than yours (1 boy, 2 girls) but love laughing with each other & us more than ever this year. We love a competition of some sort so we do a food or game contest. We’ve had a wine tasting (for over 21 of course) appetizer contest, game night. We’ve become very creative. Everyone participates. So much fun

  33. Thanks for another great post! I have learned so much since following you. I love your honesty and sincerity about real life. You have been a friend from afar through this challenging. So grateful for your time and dedication to connecting with us out here! May His grace shine on your day!

  34. Great post! I’ve been having a tough time with fashion (2020 says it all!) and I really appreciate your other, non-fashion items that you’ve shared! Thanks!!

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