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It’s a sign of these strange times: Toilet paper has turned into a hot commodity. The booze delivery business is booming. A guy in Tennessee hoarded 17,000 bottles of hand sanitizer to sell them off. (He eventually donated them.)
Social distancing and self-isolation are becoming norms in our lives now, as are hoarding, stockpiling, panic buying and “pandemic pantries.”
You’ve probably even seen empty shelves, full carts and long lines in your neighborhood grocery stores and local pharmacies. Since everyone seems to be searching for essentials, these products are selling fast and even selling out completely.
If you haven’t found what you need at stores nearby, you might have turned to places like Amazon and Walmart, which are historically known for having almost anything you could need within two-day shipping.
But even the two companies are trying to keep up with increased demand. Walmart has seen increased sales for tops and not bottoms (all those Zoom meetings and sweatpants). Amazon has so many orders that it’s experiencing delivery delays and has stopped accepting “non-essential” items to its warehouses.
In case you’re wondering about whether it’s safe to order online, so far the World Health Organization said it’s still OK to receive packages — but you might want to open and clean any delivery packages for extra precaution. You do have to make sure to wash your hands and, obviously, try not to touch your delivery person.
While it’s best to try to shop local right now — especially with the recent shutdowns of small businesses — if you’re still trying to find essentials and haven’t had any luck IRL and want to ditch Amazon and Walmart, there are a lot of sites with necessities in stock worth knowing about.
From fresh produce and personal care items to cleaning supplies and games to pass the time, we found where to shop online for necessities when Amazon and Walmart are out of stock.
Bookmark this page, as we’ll update this list as best when can when things sell out.
Take a look below:
1. Groceries and fresh produce
For fresh produce, you can go with a grocery delivery service like FreshDirect and Instacart. If you didn’t know, Postmates actually has its own grocery delivery (in select spots), in case you’re tired of ordering takeout.
And if you’re still having trouble getting groceries, especially as lots of grocery delivery services are swamped, one of our editors had success calling up her local supermarket and having the store deliver right to her door. Thrive Market also offers some fan-favorite organic brands and you can get things like almond butter and rolled oats.
While meat are your local grocery might be running low, you could check out meat delivery services like Porter Road and Crowd Cow. For nights when you’re craving that charcuterie from your favorite post-work bar, you can find meats at D’Artagnan and cheeses at Hickory Farms.
You might have noticed that Trader Joe’s frozen pastries have been going quick, but you can fill your sweet tooth with Williams-Sonoma’s frozen pastries. Plus, Williams-Sonoma has care packages you can send to loved ones you’re missing now.
New Yorkers who might be missing their neighborhood farmers market can check out OurHarvest and Farm to People, which curate and deliver locally-sourced groceries, or Food Kick for same-day grocery delivery in Brooklyn, Manhattan and Queens. Local Roots has subscriptions and start kits of farm-fresh food.
You can also check out our guides to getting alcohol delivered to your door, meat delivery services, no-contact takeout and where to get fruit and vegetable seeds online.
2. Personal care, from beauty to hygiene
Walgreens could be your best bet for personal care items, including body wash, deodorant, cotton swabs and period pads and tampons. Keep in mind that Walgreens says on its site that it’s experiencing lots of demand and delays in delivery dates.
Since essentials like toilet paper are basically sold out to shop online, you could try calling up your local mom and pop store to see if there’s a pack available. You could try an easy-to-install and under $100 bidet from Tushy, since bidets seem to be all the rage now.
Paper towels are selling out quickly, too, so you might try more sustainable alternatives, like these rolls of reusable paper towels, a set of Swedish dishcloths to dry off dishes or eco-friendly beeswax wraps to cover leftovers. And for your home office, Staples carries tissue paper that you can get in bulk.
Right now, you’ve probably been trying to search for masks to wear out when you’re running essential errands. So we went ahead and found the places that are selling face masks, including LA Apparel and Old Navy. And since experts recommend using filters in face masks, we spotted where to get them, too.
If you don’t want the options at your local drug store, you could consider direct-to-consumer brands for some personal care items.
Toothbrush brands Quip and Goby will send you automatically recurring deliveries of replacement brush heads. You could try out a new toothpaste, like Marvis ones which one of our editors swears by (especially the jasmine mint flavor), or others at Grove Collaborative, if you’re over the one you always use.
For pads, tampons and other period products ― we found the unexpected places online are are well-stocked. There are even direct-to-consumer brands like LOLA and Cora that sell organic versions of tampons, pads and other feminine hygiene products. We’ve even got a review of the Saalt menstrual cup that’s become a cult-favorite.
You’ll be able to find everything from cleansers to concealers at Sephora, Ulta and Dermstore. Nordstrom also has a well-stocked beauty section. You can also support your favorite brands like Glossier, Milk Makeup and Tatcha by buying directly on their own sites, too.
For the, ahem, very personal, Lovehoney, Dame, Babeland and Unbound all have sexual wellness products as well as solo and couples adult toys that might be worth browsing. LELO has a line of luxury adult toys, too.
You can also check out our guides to where to buy face masks online, where to buy face mask filters, cutting your hair at home, coloring your hair at home, how to make your next bath more relaxing, at-home facials, the best sex toys online, where to find period products online, at-home hair removal products and how to get a salon-worthy manicure at home.
3. All things home, including homewares and cleaning supplies
Since so many of us are working from home now and trying to limit leaving the house, you might be looking to spruce up your space. You might also be thinking of spring cleaning, too.
While lots of cleaning supplies from brands like Clorox and Lysol are selling out, you could try out some more green alternatives, like Grove Collaborative and Blueland, which have eco-friendly household cleaning supplies. Blueland even has a clean essentials kit.
For messes that the furriest member of your family makes, Petco still has Clorox pet cleaning products in stock.
To keep your whites white, we talked to experts on how to do laundry at home by hand if you’ve been limiting your time at a laundromat. You can find some Method and Mrs. Meyer’s Clean Day laundry products (the same brand that you sometimes see at Target) at Grove Collaborative. Dropps and The Laundress are more eco-friendly brands for laundry care.
But we noticed that Bed Bath & Beyond has lots of the traditional laundry brands (like Tide, like this honey lavender detergent) that are out of stock elsewhere. You can find wool dryer balls and wash bags there, too, to make laundry day easier.
If you’re in the mood for some home improvement — from plumbing problems to fixing a fence, The Home Depot has both the tools and tips (with the help of DIY videos) for all the your rooms, from the bathroom to the kitchen.
You might be tired of your dining chairs or need a desk chair — brands like IKEA, Overstock, Pottery Barn, West Elm and Wayfair all have furniture and furnishings. Looking to get organized? You can get all kinds of storage at The Container Store.
But if you’re just looking to spruce up your living room with decor, you could find some unique finds at Etsy, Uncommon Goods, Urban Outfitters, Anthropologie, Rifle Paper Co., Society6, and West Elm. They’ll have things like pillows and posters to make your home feel more like, well, home.
For candles, you could check out our guide to candles to burn when you’re feeling burned out. Otherland, Homesick Candles, Voluspa and Brooklinen are all brands that we feel like lighting up. Anthropologie and Nordstrom each have a big collection of candles, too.
Those really getting into cooking now can find cookware, bakeware and dinnerware (for nights when you want to feel fancier dining in) at Food52 (you can even find a cutting board with a place for your phone), Williams-Sonoma, Le Creuset and Sur La Table. We also suggest Bed Bath & Beyond and Overstock for pots and pans that won’t break the bank.
And, if you’re looking to bring the outside inside, you might consider going green with plants from The Sill, The Bouqs, Etsy and Bloomscape. We put together a round-up of cute pots and planters for all your succulents.
You can also check out our guides to how to spring clean, get plants delivered right to you, make your outdoor space into an office, do laundry at home by hand and improve your home work space when you don’t have a desk.
4. Pet products, like dog food and cat litter
The furriest member of your family might not know what’s going on, but chances are they’re happy to have you home.
Petco and PetSmart are obvious choices, of course, especially because they have everything from food to grooming supplies. Chewy might also be a go-to site now for toys, treats and litter because you can set up autoship recurring orders from Chewy for your pet’s favorite food and essentials.
If you’re looking for pet companies other than the ones mentioned above, you could try out The Farmer’s Dog (which delivers healthy dog food) or Pet Plate (a meal plan for dogs). For walks around the neighborhood, you could check out Wild One, which has all kinds of walk kits.
You can also check out our guide to the best online pet stores for delivery, from Chewy to Cat Person.
5. Games, books and tech
Stuck staring at a screen all day when working from home? Just need a break from Netflix binge-watching on the weekends? You might try your hand at an adult board game like Telestrations After Dark or classics with a twist like this “Golden Girls” edition of Clue at Bed Bath & Beyond.
While lots of puzzles have been sold out already on Amazon, you can find games for two at Urban Outfitters and Uncommon Goods. But for people into puzzles, Uncommon Goods still has some in stock, too — including a New York Times front page puzzle that’s customizable and made to order.
One of the most unexpected places we found puzzles was at Huckberry — which has trendy Areaware gradient ones that’ll take some time. Look out for puzzles at The Met Store, too, like a Vincent van Gogh self-portrait, and your money will also go to supporting The Met museums while they’re closed through July. Keep in mind that some of these puzzles are on backorder until mid-June.
Artists in the making (or if you’re in the mood for a virtual drinking and painting night) can find art supplies at Staples, Blick, and Arteza. Michaels carries paint packs, like this acrylic set, that can keep the kiddos entertained while you’re working from home. There are adult coloring books at Etsy as well.
Aspiring sewists can find everything they need in places like Michaels and Blick. We even asked stitch experts about how to learn to sew. And tie-dying’s trendy now so you might make your t-shirts a little more colorful with the best tie-dye kits we found.
If you’re looking to learn a new skill from a master, you could get an online MasterClass membership from a celebrity like Anna Wintour. There are even online workout classes from Udemy that fitness fanatics can follow.
For book lovers, you might order online to support independent and local shops as many are closing their doors. But if there’s not somewhere nearby to fill your bookshelves, you might try Powell’s Books or Politics and Prose (an independent bookstore based in Washington, D.C.).
And, if you’re wondering what Animal Crossing’s all about, you could splurge on a Nintendo Switch Lite, which has sold out almost everywhere, but the gray color is available at Game Stop. You can shop for more video games there, too and Best Buy.