Blog Posts by Good Housekeeping

  • The Best Paper Shredders of 2013

    The Good Housekeeping Research Institute Engineering Lab put 26 six- to 12-sheet cross-cut shredders through their paces. We spent 40 hours feeding 'em paper (sometimes stapled or paper-clipped) and CDs to assess speed, safety, and noise levels. We also noted how easily they jammed or overheated and how much mess they left in their wake around the recycling bin.

    Protect your identity with one of the five document-demolishing devices that aced our tests.

    Black and Decker Studio Shredder1. Black & Decker Studio Shredder
    6 sheets at a time ($48, amazon.com)

    At 16" x 13" x 4", this stylish, lightweight device is ideal for small spaces and rolls easily to where you need it. Its pullout bin makes cleanup a snap - and we love the brilliant color.


    2. Fellowes Powershred 73CI
    16" x 21" x 11"; 12 sheets ($200, amazon.com)

    A top choice for any office prone to pop-ins from pets or kids, it shuts off automatically if the paper slot is touched. Plus, it won't allow "overfeeding," so essentially,

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  • How to Host a Swinging Mad Men Party

    Mad MenIf you're anything like us, you've been waiting with bated breath for the premiere of AMC's lush drama about an up-and-coming advertising agency set in the late 1960s. Having friends over to watch the first episode on April 7? We'll help you plan the perfect Mad Men-themed menu. And, just as the show's evolved with the times (Bye bye page boys and demure suits, hello big hair and crazy fashion!), we've tweaked these mid-century dishes to bring them into the modern era.

    Related: Honey-Inspired Recipes


    Traditional Waldorf salads are heavy on the mayonnaise, but our update uses nonfat yogurt instead to lighten up this classic. Prepping in a hurry? Pick up a rotisserie chicken to save some cooking time.

    No 1960's party would be complete without a glazed ham, but our recipe includes some alternative options if the sweetness of pineapple isn't to your taste. Try our tomato and onion glaze for a more savory take.

    Related: Sweet Recipes Turned Savory

    Spice up a

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  • The Best Compact Umbrellas

    Find out the best compact umbrellasThe only thing worse than getting caught in the rain without a brolly is being stuck with one that is flimsy or falls apart. That's why the Good Housekeeping Research Institute Textiles Lab evaluated 31 compact folding models for resistance to heavy rain and to turning inside out (inversion), as well as for ease of use. We also measured length, weight, and canopy diameter to help you find the ideal tote-able - and save your looks on your next good hair day.

    Top Picks

    Storm Warrior
    Samsonite Windguard Auto Open Close ($30, amazon.com)

    Fabric held fast to spokes with over 35 pounds of pulling force applied. Easy to operate.

    Related: Best Rain Gear for Women

    Lightweight Wonder
    ShedRain RainEssentials Auto Open and Close ($32, amazon.com)

    Just 0.45 lbs., and durable in inversion and spoke tests. Provides good coverage, too.

    Related: Best Beach Umbrellas

    Smallest Winnder
    Totes Signature Micro 'Brella ($24, amazon.com)

    This manual model has highly

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  • The History of Peeps

    Peeps celebrate 60 years For over 20 years, Peeps have reigned as the #1 non-chocolate Easter candy brand. We're paying tribute to the cute confection by celebrating the most important milestones in Peeps history.

    1923: The Just Born Candy Company gets its name when founder Sam Born displays fresh chocolates and other candies in the window of his Brooklyn storefront with a sign proudly announcing, "just born." Born focused on bringing French-style chocolates to New York City long before he perfected the marshmallow chick.

    1932: During the Great Depression, the company reduces costs by relocating to an empty printing factory in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania.


    Related: 12 Modern Ways To Display Easter Eggs


    1953:
    Just Born acquires Rodda Candy Company, which made marshmallow chicks by Vintage Peepspainstakingly piping marshmallow through a pastry bag. To the right, Rodda Candy Company's vintage chicks show off their retro wings.

    1954: The Peep meets mass production, thanks to Sam Born's son Bob, who mechanized

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  • 15 Bobs You Should Try This Spring

    This stylish short cut, first popularized in the 1920s, has many famous fans. For a classic bob, make sure your ends reach your shoulders (if your hair is curly, they should fall just past your shoulders to compensate for shrinkage). Have your stylist lightly razor the tips so that they flip a bit. Ask for longer locks in the front, with angled, blunt edges gradually becoming shorter toward the back. "The swingy layers of the bob flatter all face shapes, from round to oval or square," says New York City hairstylist Sean James Decuers. This shorter length can also plump up fine hair by taking away some weight.

    More from Good Housekeeping:


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  • 7 Things You Didn't Know About Sleep

    Read these seven tips for why you may not be getting the best sleep possible.1. You sleep in cycles.
    A full sleep cycle takes about 90 to 120 minutes, says psychologist Lisa Medalie, a behavioral sleep specialist at the University of Chicago. You go through four stages, starting with the lightest one and ending with rapid-eye movement (REM). "Usually people wake up for a couple minutes after each complete sleep cycle," she says.

    2. You become a cold-blooded animal during REM sleep.
    During dream-filled, REM sleep, your body isn't its own furnace. "We lose the ability to thermo-regulate ourselves," says Mark Mahowald, professor of neurology at the University of Minnesota Medical School and a visiting professor of psychiatry and behavioral medicine at Stanford University. But that's fine because REM periods typically last only 20 minutes or so, though they can be as short as two minutes or as long as 45, says sleep researcher Ursula Voss, a psychology professor at the University of Frankfurt. "You become a cold-blooded animal. You don't sweat in REM sleep."

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  • What's on Sale in March

    Stock up on stainless steel flatwareSpring is officially here (thank goodness!) so you can expect to see lots of winter styles moving out to make way for fresh spring products and colors. Here, three product picks if you're looking to get a bargain this month!

    Related: 12 Easy Spring-Cleaning Tips

    1. Stainless Steel Flatware: Retailers are moving utensils out this month to make way for new styles. To find the best bets for your table:

    • Look on packaging or pieces themselves for an "18/10" marking - 18 percent chromium and 10 percent nickel. Chromium gives flatware strength and keeps it from rusting, while nickel helps it resist acids and gives it a silver-like look.
    • There should be no burrs or rough spots between the fork tines - pinch at the space and run your fingertips down it to check.
    • Good knives are forged as one piece. The blade should be finely serrated, and have a little "give" so it won't break when cutting hard foods - grasp it at either end and flex to check for slight bendability.
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  • 7 Best Easter Chocolates

    Easter chocolates When I was little, one of my favorite parts of Easter was when my great-uncle Andy would visit, bearing a colorful basket filled with fake grass, jelly beans, and-always-a chocolate Easter bunny. Here in the test kitchen, we thought we'd relive our childhoods a bit and try some of the adorable chocolate treats that are available today. Our tasting* wasn't exhaustive - bathing suit season is approaching, after all! - but we pulled together some of the cutest and tastiest holiday chocolates out there.

    1. Fran's Chocolates

    Fran's, from Seattle, is a crowd favorite here in the food department.

    12 piece assorted Easter eggs, $22

    We loved all the flavors, but fell hard for the coconut and hazelnut crunch fillings.

    Fran's 7-piece salted caramels, $12.75
    We never say no to Fran's salted caramels - the green box and ribbon would be a classy addition to any basket.

    2. Harbor Sweets

    Robert L Strohecker Assorted Rabbit, $16.95

    Named for the founder's

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  • 5 Ways to Color Eggs with Items Already in Your Kitchen

    Check out these five ways to color your Easter eggsMany of these Easter eggs can be made in less than an hour with ingredients you probably already have right in your kitchen. Just grab some colorful produce, spices, vinegar and fresh eggs, then follow these simple steps:

    Pink
    1 medium beet, chopped + 2 c. water + 2 Tbsp. white vinegar

    Place all ingredients in medium pot; bring to a boil. Let simmer 30 minutes, or until water turns deep red. Cool to room temperature, remove beet chunks, and pour liquid into a mason jar. Leave a hard-cooked egg in the dye for a few minutes to a few hours, depending upon the color desired.

    Related: Mix & Match Easter Menus

    Blue
    1/4 head red cabbage, chopped + 4 c. water + 2 Tbsp. white vinegar

    In medium pot, heat ingredients until water boils; simmer 25 minutes. Cool to room temperature, strain, and pour dye into two small jars. Leave a hard-cooked egg in the dye overnight for a royal blue.

    Mustard Yellow
    4 Tbsp. turmeric + 2 c. water + 2 Tbsp. white vinegar

    In small pot,

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  • The Surprising Truth About 8 Common Diet Strategies

    Peel off the pounds faster with these eight diet strategies Who has the time to keep up with weight-loss research? It's so technical...and confusing...and often contradictory! And yet if you don't know what's going on in the world of calorie counting, you may not be seeing the pounds drop off as fast as you think they should. In one European diet-and-exercise study, for example, participants who were given detailed explanations of the research itself were more likely to improve (exercise more or eat better or both) than a less clued-in group. Fortunately, we have dug into the latest research. And as we did, we noted that a surprising number of dieting tactics accepted as gospel have recently been shown to be dead wrong. Knowing which still hold up and which are big (fat) lies can mean the difference between winning and losing at weight loss. Here's the lowdown.

    1. To lose a pound, you must cut 3,500 calories

    FALSE: This much-quoted equation doesn't account for the slowdown that happens to your metabolism as you drop pounds, explain

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