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Read. Shop. Buy smart.

Are you getting a good night’s sleep?  A Consumer Reports (CR) survey shows that many people struggle to fall asleep and stay asleep.  Medications can help, but CR suggests taking a closer look at the bedroom itself.  Some sleep problems can be resolved by making changes to the bedroom environment, or finding the right mattress, pillows or blankets.  In this issue you will find information about equipment to help with air temperature, noise and airborne allergens, as well as furnishings to help make your room a desirable place to retire each night.  Ratings for more than 20 different inner spring and foam mattresses are also included.

Chocolate lovers will want to read CR’s chocolate test results.  You might be surprised to learn that many brands of dark chocolate have high levels of lead and cadmium.  With regular consumption, chocolates containing these heavy metals can be bad for your health.  The good news is that there are some brands with much safer levels.  Read up to make the healthiest possible chocolate purchase for your sweetheart this Valentine’s Day.

Clipping coupons can be a great way to save cash at the store, but do you know how to take advantage of all the savings you can get through coupons?  This article details three versions of the coupon clipping process based on the amount of time you have.  Choose the one that fits best with your weekly schedule, and then follow their advice to see results in your next shopping cart.  If you haven’t heard of coupon “stacking” be sure to check out how this works.  It can really save you lots of money on products you buy regularly.

Better fitness is often a top item on a New Year’s resolution list.  As a result we find ourselves in the market for exercise equipment.  This equipment can be bought for use at home or accessed through a gym membership.  Either way, it is important to know which equipment to use to meet your particular goals.  Checkout the ratings and rankings for treadmills, ellipticals, exercise bikes and rowing machines to find the best machine for you.

Other topics in this issue include:

  • “Optimize Your TV Settings” 

  • “Pro-Style Ranges”

  • “Try These Better Butters” 

  • “Protect Your Phone From Damage”

  • “New Car Features We Love (and Some We Don’t)”

Consumer Reports magazine is available free in print and online to Fauquier Public Library card holders, providing access to articles, reviews and ratings on over 8,000 products and services. The library has copies of Consumer Reports dating back to 2019.

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