SOURCE: Good Housekeeping

Good Housekeeping

January 04, 2011 12:07 ET

Solving Everyday Problems: Good Housekeeping's V.I.P. Awards Recognize the Year's Most Innovative Products

From a Bladeless Fan to an Effortless Way to Make Healthy, Kid-Friendly Treats, the V.I.P (Very Innovative Products) Awards Honor Life-Simplifying Products

NEW YORK, NY--(Marketwire - January 4, 2011) - The microwave oven. The personal computer. The ballpoint pen. From the moment they were introduced, these products changed our lives, making everyday tasks simpler -- so simple, in fact, that we don't know how we ever lived without them. In the same spirit of life-changing, time-saving inventions, Good Housekeeping reveals its annual V.I.P. (Very Innovative Products) Awards, which recognize the year's breakthrough products that solve everyday problems in new and innovative ways. Good Housekeeping's 2011 award winners include first-of-its-kind products in a range of categories including beauty, home appliances, outdoor recreation, cleaning, energy efficiency, and electronics. The 2011 V.I.P. Awards are featured in Good Housekeeping's February issue, on sale January 11.

The scientists and engineers at the Good Housekeeping Research Institute, the magazine's state-of-the-art product-testing laboratory, evaluate more than 2,000 new products every year. Before any product can be named a V.I.P Award winner, it must also pass the Research Institute's tests for performance and safety.

"The Research Institute directors have seen it all, evaluating dozens of new products every month, from cell phones and coffee makers to the latest anti-aging products," said Rosemary Ellis, Good Housekeeping editor-in-chief. "The V.I.P. Awards recognize the best of the best: the products that are both top performers and also solve the everyday problems that will save our readers time and hassle."

In addition to selecting the year's best products, Good Housekeeping asked readers to help determine the 2011 V.I.P. Hall of Fame winner: the product that has stood the test of time and one they couldn't imagine living without. The hands-down winner in the GoodHousekeeping.com poll was Tupperware. In 1946, the "burpable" lids were so novel, shoppers had to see a demo of how they worked -- hence the Tupperware Party -- and American pantries and refrigerators were transformed forever. Today, the Tupperware line includes everything from cook's tools and cutlery, to the classic storage containers.

The 10 recipients of the 2011 Good Housekeeping VIP Awards are (photos available upon request):

  • Apple iPad with Wi-Fi +3G: It's not an exaggeration to say that the iPad has taken the country by storm. Within weeks of its introduction, tens of thousands of apps had been developed for it -- with more launching daily. Part of its genius, aside from speedy Web browsing, elegant e-reading, stunning video display, and crystal-clear sound, is the ease with which it can be used. The iPad is über-comfortable thanks to its light weight, convenient size, and touch screen. "You can take it everywhere -- and watch Netflix films, play games, check e-mail, and surf the Web -- all with seamless navigation," says Good Housekeeping Research Institute's Test Engineer Erik Eibert. Price: Starting at $629; www.apple.com
  • Coleman Instant Tent: Camping just got a lot easier. Our testers were able to set up this roomy, two-room eight-person tent in under three minutes; dismantling took just 10. Price: $200; www.coleman.com
  • Dyson Air Multiplier: This sleek, bladeless electric fan isn't only a cool conversation starter; its unique design makes it child-safe because there are no places for small fingers to get caught, and it's super-easy to clean. "The blades and front grille of a traditional fan are magnets for dust and tough to access. Here, one wipe and you're done," says Good Housekeeping Research Institute's Home Care Director Carolyn Forté. The airflow mechanisms are housed underneath (air is pulled into the base, then sent out through the cylinder), making the fan bottom-heavy and more stable. Price: Starting at $300; www.dyson.com
  • Evolution Robotics Mint Floor Cleaner: This self-propelled robot moves up and down and all around bare floors, sweeping or mopping with any dry or wet disposable cleaning cloth or reusable microfiber cloth. "This little dynamo is so smart, even when I thought it was missing a spot, it circled back and proved me wrong," says Good Housekeeping Research Institute's Technical Director Stacy Genovese. How does it do what it does? With its low profile and less-than-10-inch width, Mint gets around and under furniture, and its GPS-like technology "maps" the room. Price: $249; www.themintcleaner.com
  • GE Profile Front Load Steam Washer with Overnight Ready Cycle: Wish the laundry would just do itself? With the Overnight Ready feature on this GE washer, that dream is one step closer to reality. It washes up to eight garments, then tumble- and fan-dries them so they're fresh and wrinkle-free to wear the next morning -- without your having to transfer them to the dryer. In fact, lightweight items can be ready in as few as two hours. By setting the delay-start, you can schedule your clothes to be ready when you are. "With this washer, if you need to clean a uniform for tomorrow's game or an outfit to take on a trip, you won't lose any sleep over it," says Good Housekeeping Research Institute's Home Care Director Carolyn Forté. Price: Starting at $1,399; www.geappliances.com
  • Goody Spin Pin: Tiny hair tools as life changers... really? Our long-haired testers responded with a resounding yes. "These simple corkscrew pins held updo styles more securely and elegantly than twice as many bobby pins," says Good Housekeeping Research Institute Beauty Lab chemist Charmaine Gillespie. With the average woman spending nearly half an hour every morning on her hair, even a little time-saving helps a lot. Testers raved that these mane tamers were invisible when anchored in hair and, unlike elastics, didn't leave dents. Price: $6 for two; www.goody.com
  • HTC Evo 4G from Sprint: Smartphones got even speedier with the introduction of the Evo, the first U.S. phone to use a 4G network for Internet speeds that rival a home DSL's and are up to 10 times faster than standard 3G. And then there are the features: the best Android operating system to date, live-streaming video, and dual cameras for video chat, plus a huge 4.3-inch screen. So far, Sprint's 4G service reaches 120 million people. Price: $450; discounted with a two-year contract; www.sprint.com
  • Method Laundry Detergent: Heavy jugs of laundry detergent are a hassle to lug home and tricky to lift and measure from. That's why this new detergent from Method is so novel: Four pumps are all you need for a medium load with the eight-times-concentrated formula. The compact container is perfectly portable -- and better for the environment because it uses less plastic. "The pump design also turns the bottle into a targeted stain pretreater tool," says Christina Peterson, Good Housekeeping Research Institute's home care product analyst. Price: $8 for 25-load size and $15 for 50-load size; www.methodhome.com
  • Sunbeam Convertible Iron + Steamer: Some garments shed wrinkles and look their best when steamed (think cotton knits); others, when pressed. This stellar Sunbeam iron does both, saving you precious clothing-prep time. It converts to a handheld steamer with the turn of a dial (the hot iron plate, when detached, rests in a heatproof trivet, so no need to wait for cooling to make the switch). Price: $80; www.sunbeamconvertible.com
  • Zoku Quick Pop Maker: Obesity experts bemoan America's snack culture. With the Zoku, you can create your own ice pops from good-for-you ingredients like pureed fruit in under 10 minutes. "Healthwise, homemade is best. Store-bought pops often contain added sweeteners, flavors, or colors," says Good Housekeeping Research Institute's Nutrition Director Samantha Cassetty, M.S., R.D. Price: $50; www.zokuhome.com

About Good Housekeeping
Founded in 1885, Good Housekeeping (www.goodhousekeeping.com) magazine reaches 25 million readers each month. In addition to the print title, there is The Good Housekeeping Research Institute, the consumer product evaluation laboratory of Good Housekeeping magazine. Founded in 1900 and continuing today with the same mission, the Research Institute is dedicated to improving the lives of consumers and their families through education and product evaluation. Only products evaluated by the Good Housekeeping Research Institute can be accepted for advertising in the magazine, and thereby become eligible to display the Good Housekeeping Seal, the hallmark that provides assurance to readers that the products advertised in the magazine are backed by a two-year limited warranty against being defective, with specified exceptions. Readers can also interact with the brand on the digital front, with Good Housekeeping mobile (m.goodhousekeeping.com). In addition to its U.S. flagship, Good Housekeeping publishes 15 editions around the world. Good Housekeeping is published by Hearst Magazines, a unit of Hearst Corporation (www.hearst.com) and one of the world's largest publishers of monthly magazines, with more than 200 editions around the world, including 14 U.S. titles and 20 magazines in the United Kingdom, published through its wholly owned subsidiary, The National Magazine Company Limited. Hearst Magazines is a leading publisher of monthly magazines in the U.S. in terms of total circulation (ABC June 2010) and reaches 73 million adults (MRI Spring 2010).

Contact Information