This is an incredible insightful and very helpful magazine from cover to cover. It doesn't have those smelly perfume ads that I cannot wait to rip out of all those other magazines before sneezing and wheezing. I look forward to getting my monthly subscription and put aside whatever I am reading at that moment to read ShopSmart. Great interesting and full of great tips and ideas
This is a great magazine. It deals with more everyday products then Consumer Reports (which I love also). I love when this comes in and sit down and read all the interesting articles and reviews. It has certainly helped me in many purchase decisions. This magazine is very interesting and fun to read. I hope to be reading it for many years.
Of all the magazines that come over this threshold....this is the one that gets thoroughly read issue after issue.
Expert tested shopping advice from the pros at Consumer's Union. They don't accept advertising so you get only the facts and no fluff. Saved me from wasting money on items that don't work and informed me on best buys.
I have subscribed to "Consumer Reports" for years as I like their unbiased reviews and policy of not accepting advertising revenue. I still subscribe to "Consumer Reports" and have decided to subscribe to "ShopSmart" as well, as it retains the unbiased, no advertising attributes of "Consumer Reports" and focuses on making daily purchasing decisions without any hype or gimmicks.
"Consumer Reports" is extremely useful, but can be quite tedious and detailed, particularly when dealing with electronics or durable goods. "ShopSmart" retains the same general editorial tone, but is much more concise. The individual articles are informative but rather brief, focusing more on value choices versus technical minutiae: of the two it is the more readable magazine by far.
While I still consider "Consumer Reports" as the gold standard for product evaluation and differentiation, "ShopSmart" provides useful, easy to apply information in a highly readable package.
I recommend that you subscribe to Consumer Reports OR ShopSmart, but not both. Here's why:
Since ShopSmart is published by Consumer Reports, I knew I could count on reliable reviews and ratings, no outside advertising, and advice that would save me money. I've subscribed to Consumer Reports for years, and knew what to expect. ShopSmart follows in the footsteps of Consumer Reports in all of these respects.
What really bothers me, though, is the amount of duplication between the two magazines. The January 2011 issue of ShopSmart contained the following, all of which appeared in the January 2011 issue of Consumer Reports:
1. Rating the best cookware sets
2. Rating the best frozen pizzas
3. An article on where sugar is "hidden" in various foods.
4. A discussion about the best all purpose cleaner
5. A review of the Duracell MyGrid charger (including the exact same accompanying photo in both magazines)
6. An article about the dangers of mercury in tuna fish
7. An article about the dangers of shattering glass bakeware
And more...and this is pretty much par for the course each month. I noticed this much overlap in a free trial issue, but thought it was an anomaly...not their standard operating procedure.
It is my opinion that the same organization I trust for their reviews is taking advantage of my trust by making two magazines with so much duplicate content. I will continue to subscribe to Consumer Reports, but I will NOT be renewing my ShopSmart subscription unless it stops duplicating so much of Consumer Reports.