(Kelly Lynn)

Costume Shops Have To Guess What You’ll Rush In To Buy On October 30th

It’s October 23rd: do you know what you’re going to be for Halloween? How about your kids? If your answer is “no,” don’t worry. Most people don’t really plan ahead for this holiday, but do you know who does? Costume shop owners. They have to not only plan for Halloween, but try to figure out what people will be rushing to stores to buy at the last minute. [More]

(PaulBarwick)

Free Shipping Will Be More Expensive This Holiday Season

There’s no such thing as free shipping. What looks like free shipping from a shopper’s perspective is only subsidized shipping, and those subsidies come from shoppers. They could come in the form of higher prices, or higher spending thresholds to earn free shipping. This year, free shipping will cost you a little more. [More]

(Geoff Myers)

Will Pet Stores Stop Selling Puppies Entirely?

Where do you get puppies? The answer isn’t just about the mechanics of canine pregnancy. In the United States today, when your household wants to acquire a dog, where do you get it from? Most people would probably start at a pet store, but due to changes in stores’ own policies and government intervention, falling in love with a doggie in the window is becoming a thing of the past. [More]

Old Navy Celebrating Birthday By Rendering Selfies In Balloons For Some Reason

Old Navy Celebrating Birthday By Rendering Selfies In Balloons For Some Reason

Twenty years ago, I was impressed with technology that let me print a pixelated version of my own picture on a dot matrix printer in my middle school technology class. I also was impressed with a new Gap brand then in pilot phase, called “The Old Navy Clothing Company.” Now people photograph ourselves daily, and Old Navy is everywhere. The clothing brand is celebrating its 20th anniversary with…pixelated selfies. [More]

At Hallmark, Get Halloween Ornaments For Your Halloween Tree

At Hallmark, Get Halloween Ornaments For Your Halloween Tree

Here at Consumerist, we pretend to hate holiday mashups while secretly loving them. Still, we have to admit that we were a little confused when we saw that Hallmark now has Halloween ornaments. Yes, it’s a long-established fact that the gift chain puts its Christmas ornament collection out in July, but we thought they were just that. Christmas tree ornaments. Not so. [More]

(Wayne Gunn)

Outerwear Companies Consider Maybe Sourcing Down From Humanely-Treated Birds

A surprising number of people (more than zero) don’t realize that down, a cozy insulation material used in clothes and bedding, comes from an animal. It does: down consists of the fine, cozy feathers closest to the skin of ducks and geese. The down that we use today mostly comes from birds raised for food in Eastern Europe and in China. How can companies balance eco-conscious customers and the supply chain of feathers? [More]

Fitbit Puts Allergen Warning Labels On Wearables

Fitbit Puts Allergen Warning Labels On Wearables

You may remember the Fitbit Force, a fitness-tracking wristband that went on the market at the end of 2013, then was eventually recalled after Consumerist brought rashes caused by the devices to the world’s attention. We’ve heard reports that the Force’s less intelligent cousin, the Flex, also caused skin irritation in some wearers. Know who else heard that? The Consumer Product Safety Commission. Fortunately for Fitbit, they’re only getting a warning. Label. [More]

These pink and white stripes are not pretty.

Thousands Of MacBooks Made In 2011 Have Self-Immolating Graphics Cards

Models of Apple’s higher-end portable computer, the MacBook Pro, have come to the end of their three-year extended warranties. That leaves their owners at the mercy of Apple when something goes wrong, and at minimum thousands of the computers have had the same computer-killing problem with their graphics processing unit. Apple has not publicly admitted that the machines have a problem. [More]

They're baaaaaack

Apple Stores To Stop Selling Fitbit Trackers, New Product Photos Leaked

If you’re one of the people who loved the Fitbit Force, but returned the fitness-tracking wristband when you suffered from contact dermatitis or when the product was recalled in the United States, good news. Photos have leaked of a product display for the Force’s rumored replacements, and they look very similar. However, we have bad news if you planned to buy that wristband at your local Apple Store. [More]

(Adrian Scottow)

Amazon UK Finds Use For Newspaper Distributors: Delivering Packages

Who visits every neighborhood on a daily basis? There’s the postal service, of course, but another group of drivers or distributors on foot come by early in the morning, making their deliveries while most people sleep. Most cities still have a daily newspaper, so why not take advantage of that to bring online orders to residential neighborhoods? That’s what Amazon wants to do in the United Kingdom. [More]

Report: Amazon Will Open A Real-Life Store In Manhattan

Near here. (Joel Zimmer)

Back in the 1920s, catalog retail giant Sears opened massive spaces in major cities that served as combination retail stores and regional distribution centers for catalog goods. These centers closed in the ’80s and ’90s, but now online retail giant Amazon.com is following the same pattern in a tiny way, opening a combination retail store and pick-up center in New York City, across the street from the Empire State Building. [More]

(Michael Daddino)

Outlet Stores May Not Be What You Think They Are

Old-school outlet shopping involved visiting clothing factory towns and digging through bins of slightly irregular underpants in a rough store space that was sometimes just off the factory floor. Today, outlet stores are nicely designed stores in special malls and in regular malls alike, thousands of miles away from where the clothes are made. [More]

JCPenney Will Make You The Most Fashionable Family In 1986

JCPenney Will Make You The Most Fashionable Family In 1986

The winter holidays are coming up, with family gatherings and parties that you don’t want to attend, but have to look nice for anyway. That means it’s time to go shopping for red sport coats and bow-bedecked blouses, to keep your family looking sharp! Because it’s always 1986 in my imagination, let’s go to…JCPenney. [More]

Amazon Fighting FTC On In-App Purchases By Kids

Amazon Fighting FTC On In-App Purchases By Kids

While its competitors in mobile apps Apple and Google have reached settlements with the Federal Trade Commission, Amazon has decided that it will not roll over. No, the tech company is going to fight the FTC’s lawsuit against it rather than settle, and filed a brief last week making the case that this is all the darn parents’ fault. Sort of. [More]

General Motors Issues Bonus Recall Of 57,182 Vehicles

General Motors Issues Bonus Recall Of 57,182 Vehicles

On Friday, General Motors recalled 524,000 vehicles due to defects that could cause crashes if they manifested themselves while you’re driving on the highway. The GM recall-announcing team pulled a weekend shift and announced an additional recall of more than 57,000 vehicles. Models included in this recall are the Pontiac G8, Chevrolet Caprice police cruisers, Cadillac CTS-Vs, and Chevrolet Sonics. [More]

Cats: not one of the top 5 gadgets. (<a href="frankieleon>frankieleon)

Americans Will Spend $34 Billion On Consumer Electronics This Holiday Season

What consumer items do you have your eye on this year? The Consumer Electronics Association, a trade group for exactly what you think it is, says that our most-coveted gifts this holiday season are consumer electronics. Well, that doesn’t surprise anyone, but the CEA projects that we will spend $33.76 billion on electronics this year. [More]

Supreme Court Will Hear Case Of Abercrombie Job Applicant Denied Because Of Hijab

Supreme Court Will Hear Case Of Abercrombie Job Applicant Denied Because Of Hijab

Back in 2008, a 17-year-old in Oklahoma applied for a job at a local Abercrombie Kids store. She made the cut, but learned that the store’s “look policy” wouldn’t allow her to wear a religious head covering. Just over a year ago, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission won the right for employees to wear religious head coverings while they battle the cologne stench at Abercrombie, but the headscarf itself isn’t what this case is about. [More]

iFixit Declares iPhone 6 Most Repairable iPhone Ever, Which Isn’t Saying Much

iFixit Declares iPhone 6 Most Repairable iPhone Ever, Which Isn’t Saying Much

You can save money and extend the useful life of your out-of-warranty gadgets by repairing them yourself, but should you? iFixit, provider of free repair guides and seller of parts and tools, buys the latest devices and tears them apart, assigning them a “repairability score.” They report that some design changes make the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus the most repairable iPhones ever. [More]