Watering can with water

Back in 2015 I wrote about my two perfect watering cans and one that I deemed “flawed,” according to the caption (above).

I declared cans to be perfect thanks to two features I always look for – balance, so that you can carry them without spilling (which the flawed one couldn’t do), and a large enough opening for a nozzle. (Namely, the Dramm One-Touch I love because it stays on, instead of requiring constant hand pressure to keep it on.)

Turns out, neither of my perfect cans made it through the winter, thanks to my negligence in emptying them and storing them correctly. Both the metal and the blue plastic one came apart at the seams a bit, making them unusable.

So after some research I bought a Bloem 2.5 gallon one (right) online at Home Depot for $21.47. The details shown on the site include this important info: “They feature a wide mouth for easy filling.”

But also there’s this boast: “Easy to handle and grip” and which is SO not true, and the first commenter online nailed it: “Handle has sharp edges underneath, difficult to carry when full.”

Making me wonder if the design team ever thought to ask a human being to fill the can with water and then pick it up because they would surely have heard the human say something like “Ouch, this thing hurts my hand!” I plan to unceremoniously wrap the damn handle with duct tape to protect my hands.

Other than that near-miss, I love this can!

Watering Can Recommendations Online

In my research I found that at Houzz, their “Most Popular Contemporary Watering Cans” are a surprisingly pitiful bunch! And they’re selling the can I just bought for $22 as a set of 6 for $125. Now who needs a set of 6 of them?

Next, I found the “Best Watering Cans of 2019: on The Spruce, apparently a content mill, so let’s look at what they produce for Google to find and give them links.

Their top choice is this pink thing. How to fill and pour it? And their “Best Galvanized”
has a handle that looks even less comfortable as my near-miss. And my question about their “Best Multipurpose in lime green is wtf?

(A note to manufacturers of garden products – some of us prefer that our plants catch the eye, not your hot-pink watering can or bright green garden hose. Water Right hoses come in subtle colors like olive.)

But back to watering cans, does the New York Times’ publication Wirecutter do any better at choosing them?

Their favorite is another Bloem can (right), and I can’t tell from the photos whether a nozzle would fit in the fill hole or not but the reviewer writes that “The twin handles—a fixed one on the side and a hinged one on top—make filling, carrying, and pouring exceptionally easy,” so I’m curious to try sometime. Just $17 at Amazon.

And my perennial question about balance was answered by the reviewer: “I experienced absolutely no leaking, spilling, or sloshing while filling, carrying, or using the can.”

Their somewhat pricier “upgrade pick” ($40 at Walmart) doesn’t look like something I’d ever want to use, despite the reviewer calling it “a standard among professional gardeners for years.” He writes that “Water sprays upward and then arcs downward, falling as gently as rain.” But why?

Still, I appreciate the Wirecutter reviewer telling us that among the features he looked for are balance, a large fill hole, a comfortable grip, and “high-grade molded plastic for longevity.” Good stuff.

But how about the product specs provided by manufacturers? They typically do NOT answer my top questions about watering cans – about balance and the size of the fill hole, neither of which can be discerned by the images they provide.

That’s my watering can rant, for 2019 at least.

Different Types Of Watering Cans – Choosing Watering Cans For Gardens

Just as many of us have a favorite pair of pants or a special way to fold towels, there are also preferred watering cans among the knowledgeable gardening set. Each option is as individual as those pants and provides a slightly different watering experience. Different types of watering cans can fulfill specific roles in the home and the landscape. Read on for an informative look at watering cans and their many varieties.

Different Types of Watering Cans

Nozzles and necks. Who knew these were important items in the watering world? The many different types of watering cans encompass unique body styles but also different diameter and length necks and a host of handy nozzle designs. Each is fashioned for different plant needs. The style you choose depends upon the size of the plants as well as the method needed to deliver water. Some tips on when to use a watering can with certain design features can help you decide which device to purchase.

Metal or plastic

The two most basic kinds of watering cans are either metal or plastic. Plastic tends to be a bit less expensive and is generally not that durable but these watering cans are lightweight and easy to tote. Metal cans last longer, provided they are galvanized and resist rust. These may be a bit heavier to haul around but their durability means you can have your trusty watering can around for the life of your garden.

There is no right or wrong choice but one thing to consider is off gassing. Plastic cans can contaminate your water, which is something to regard if you are watering edibles. Otherwise, either of these watering cans for gardens should do an equally good job.

Size and handle position

Size is another issue. If you are using watering cans for light duty work, like gently watering under the leaves of an African Violet, you need a little guy. For bigger jobs in the greenhouse or garden, choose one that you can comfortably lift but that keeps you from having to make frequent trips to the hose bib.

It may seem odd to worry about the length and size of a watering neck but consider the different types of plants you will be irrigating. In the case of the African Violets, for example, a longer, slender neck is best to help you get under the leaves. Longer necks are also useful for hanging baskets and other hard to reach locations. Shorter necks are sufficient for most overhead watering and offer stability without much dribbling.

The position of the handle may be something to consider too. Hold the can and see if it is comfortable to pour. Different types of watering cans will handle in distinctive ways. A double handled model may be useful for older gardeners or children who can stabilize the can effortlessly with both hands. It is important to know what type of plants and situations you will be using the can so you can determine which specifications meet your needs.

Sprinkler attachment

As they say, “a rose is not just a rose.” The sprinkler attachment, often called a rose or rosette, is one of the more important features of the watering can. If you don’t have an adjustable spray rosette, you need to know when to use a watering can with specific spray spouts.

Some watering cans for gardens have a fine spray which delivers water gently. These are useful for delicate plants and newly sprouted specimens. The rose at the end of the spout should remove so you can also deliver fast doses of water. This is also helpful if the spout clogs, so it can be cleaned.

Adjustable rosettes are a wonder. You can give a gentle rain shower or a more vehement watering, but the rosette spreads the water over the surface of the soil evenly, getting to all the roots.

Using watering cans in different ways may mean keeping around a smaller, long nozzled one and a larger capacity, ergonomic type with adjustable rose. That way you have covered your bases and have a can suitable for any type of need.

A traditional long-necked metal watering can with a sprinkler head to gently shower plants is the first thing to buy for a first garden. Get a good one, and it will last a lifetime. Here are 10 of our favorite watering cans, generously sized and designed with handles that make them comfortable to carry:

Above: How can we pick just one style of Haw’s watering can to recommend? Ever since company founder John Haws came up with the idea of a perfectly balanced watering vessel in the 19th century, the English manufacturer has dominated the market. Today Haw’s makes oval cans, long-spouted cans, metal cans, plastic cans, indoor cans, outdoor cans, metal cans–in a variety of sizes, colors, and finishes.

But if you own just one watering can, it should be the versatile 4.5-liter Haw’s Traditional Metal Watering Can, available for £39.99 from Garden Gifts Direct. In the US, a smaller 1.1-gallon capacity Haw’s Traditional Watering Can is $69.95 from Williams-Sonoma.

Above: A large 3.1-gallon galvanized steel Hoop Handle Watering Can has a corrosion-resistant zinc finish and a screw-on spout; $48 from Terrain.

Above: Inspired by an antique from the 1800s, a 3-gallon Stainless Steel Watering Can is 122.50€ from Botanique Editions.

Above: A Traditional Stainless Steel Watering Can with brass accents is corrosion resistant and holds 1.5 gallons; $53.95 from Signature Hardware.

Above: From Dutch studio Esschert Designs, a White Watering Can with a large removable head is $44.99 from Hayneedle.

Above: Sourced in Hungary, a limited supply of Vintage Galvanized Watering Cans with double handles have cone-shaped removable roes to allow you to adjust the force of the flow. They’re $69.95 apiece from Williams-Sonoma.

Above: Available in two sizes, a Watering Can In Gooseberry made from powder coated steel is £25 (for a 5-liter capacity) or £32 (10 liters) from Garden Trading.

Above: The shape of an oval Zinc Coated Watering Can makes it easy to carry close to the body. A detachable sprinkler head has a removable rubber ring to create a tight seal. The can holds eight liters (approximately 2.5 gallons) of water and is 41€ from Manufactum.

Above: A 5-liter Burgon & Ball Waterfall Watering Can in racing green is powder coated in a glossy finish over galvanized steel; £24.95.

Above: A 2.1-gallon Stainless Steel Watering Can by Esschert Design has double handles, each with a wooden grip for comfort; $58.45 from Hayneedle.

For more stylish watering cans, see:

    • The Most Beautiful Watering Can Ever
    • Steal This Look: Your Dream Garden Shed
    • Belgian Basics with a Fairy Tale Twist

Pinpoint Watering Can


Pinpoint™ Indoor Push Button Watering Can

The PinPoint™ is ideal for watering conservatory & house plants, flowers, hanging baskets, delicates & seedlings, window boxes & plants in awkward places. The concentrated flow also keeps seeds damp for improved germination.

The cousin of the larger NuCan is sleek, stylish and unlike any other indoor watering can there has ever been. It shares the features of the NuCan and also gives complete control to the user.

Pinpoint’s push button system for full control.

Sharing the unique design concept of the NuCan, the Pinpoint has a push button for instant flow control. This offers a complete indoor watering solution to the time old problems of over watering, spills on carpets (that can often ruin), vase filling and delicate work on seedlings in the greenhouse or window ledge.

Design features include:

  • Ideal for patios and small areas. No spills flow control
  • Closing lid means no more accidents
  • Balanced for easy handling
  • Curved spout for easy access
  • Stylish ergonomic design
  • 1 year guarantee


  • A precise & accurate way to water plants, flowers & seedlings
  • Control the Flow – for light watering depress the button slightly
  • Concentrates the flow to the exact point – no more watering weeds
  • Prevents water spillage indoors & reduces wastage outdoors
  • No more over watering or water damage to delicates & seedlings
  • Convenience – no more spills or wet arms when watering hanging baskets
  • Saves water – over traditional watering cans & hosepipes
  • Easy to use & carry – spout down with one hand
  • A gardening aid beneficial for people with back problems or disabilities

At last – no spills indoor watering. Pinpoint’s push button does it all!

Pinpoint holds 1.3 litres and is available now.

A watering can (also known as a watering pot) is an easy way to water plants by hand and usually comes with a spout and a handle. Most watering cans hold between 1-2.5 gallons of water and are made from plastic, ceramic, or metal.

Watering cans have been used since the 17th century (or earlier) and since then have seen countless design improvements. Back then, the metal watering can (or galvanized watering can) was the most common style used. Today, those are typically used for decoration or as a throwback to older times.

A quality watering can should have a cap at the end, with small holes intended to break the water stream up into droplets. This will keep the water pressure from building too high, evenly dispersing water onto the plants.

Many gardeners prefer a plastic watering can over watering tins for reasons we will cover later on in the article.

The 8 Best Watering Cans on the Market

Product Features
Best OutdoorBosmere Haws Deluxe Watering CanBest Outdoor
  • 1.3 Gallons
  • Extension Spout Included
  • Injection Molded Hard Plastic
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Best IndoorBloem Aqua Rite Watering CanBest Indoor
  • 36 Ounces
  • Lightweight and Compact
  • Long Stem Spout
Check Current Price
Best All-AroundBloem Easy Pour Watering CanBest All-Around
  • 2.6 Gallons
  • Dual Handle Design
  • Adjustable Water Spout
Check Current Price
Best MetalBehrens Steel Watering CanBest Metal
  • 2.5 Gallons
  • Rust Resistant Steel
  • Vintage Look
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Best ValueCado Watering CanBest Value
  • 2 Gallons
  • No Frills
  • Affordable Price
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Best Heavy DutyRainmaker Watering CanBest Heavy Duty
  • 3.2 Gallons
  • Heavy Duty Plastic
  • Long Lasting
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Long SpoutIMEEA Stainless Steel Watering CanLong Spout
  • 30 Ounces
  • 18/8 Stainless Steel
  • Long Spout
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Indoor ValueBosmere Haws Indoor Watering CanIndoor Value
  • 16 Ounces
  • Precision Watering Spout
  • Compact Size
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Do You Even Need a Watering Can?

The first logical question to ask yourself when you’re considering purchasing a watering can is whether you even need one.

Water cans are not a necessity for everyone. If you own a house or a community garden plot, you likely already have access to a hose and won’t need one.

If you are growing flowers, fruits, or vegetables in mass, you likely already have a system for irrigation. For apartment-dwellers, a kettle or measuring cup is probably enough. However, a plant watering can still has use in most places.

When is a Watering Can Useful?

When you are transplanting or seeding outside, a quality watering can will provide the right volume of water and gentle spray necessary for reaching deep roots. Hoses are harsh on seedlings and aren’t long enough to reach certain areas.

Sprinklers may leave certain areas in the yard dry while over-soaking others. Using an ordinary cup may work for lower plants, but for higher-hanging pots, it isn’t sufficient. All of these frustrations can be assuaged with a DIY, long spout watering can.

In order to choose the best watering can, it’s important to understand the key differences between each type.

Types of Watering Cans


Some prefer the look of galvanized watering cans or tin water cans, but there’s a type that is more popular.

The first and most commonly seen type is the plastic watering can. Since the ideal choice is both functional and visually appealing, you shouldn’t have to sacrifice visual appeal for usability. Sturdiness, consistency, and versatility are key and plastic provides all of this.

  • Long-lasting: In terms of physical materials, plastic is ideal since it won’t rust and lasts a long time when properly stored.
  • Efficient with Space: Home and urban gardeners don’t have a lot of storage to work with, so ideally they can find a small plastic watering can.
  • Light and Easy to Refill: A consistent, light flow of water is crucial for plant growth and plastic offers a convenient way to refill without hassle or heaviness.

As long as the plastic is safe for gardening (which it should be), you shouldn’t have any issues using a plastic watering can. You’ll just want to keep it out of direct light when not in use to prolong its lifespan.

Metal Watering Cans

As stated before, metal watering cans were more popularly used in history and are most commonly used decoratively today. Tin watering cans weren’t excluded from this list, even though plastic options are less likely to lead or degrade over time.

A Simpler Method: Both plastic and metal are suitable materials for a quality gardening watering can and can work for multiple types of plants. Whether plastic or metal, a watering pail is a charming tool that can put us back in touch with simpler times.

Galvanized Steel: A galvanized water can with a silver finish is most commonly used for outdoors. It’s durable and has a charming vintage look that looks great in the garden. The benefit of this style is that it doesn’t rust from rain the way other tin watering cans will, but alkaline soil may rust it. When it comes to outdoor watering, galvanized steel definitely wins over plastic.

Other Options: There are also brass watering cans, stainless steel, and copper styles. Tin options are typically painted to look decorative and some are even used as flower pots.

Long Spout Watering Can

When it comes to watering indoors, reach and design are what you should consider first. A long reach plant watering can will help you reach high-hanging plants, and an appealing design will look great in your home and make you want to pick up the can and use it.

If you have hanging pots in your home and are wanting a watering can for indoor use, long spout watering cans are your best bet.

Indoor Plant Misters

Whether you need to spray your outdoor flowers with a light mist or give your indoor plants some water every so often, misting your plants will increase their levels of humidity.

Since plants soak in nutrients and water through their root system, misting won’t add to that, but it will slow down water-loss through the blossoms and leaves. Choosing whether to gently water from below or to mist from the leaves will require that you look at the advantages of both options.

The 8 Best Watering Cans

1. Bosmere Haws Deluxe Watering Can

Bosmere Haws Deluxe Plastic Watering Can, 1.3-Gallon/5-Liter, Green

  • Extremely hard wearing with high impact strength;…
  • Light in weight and has two handles
  • Removable oval brass rose and a plastic downspout…

Haws watering cans are crafted from recyclable, high grade plastic for rigidity and wall strength. It comes with a right-angle downspout and removable, oval brass, plastic-backed watering rose for better precision with your watering.


  • Effortless Watering and Balance: This watering can comes with two handles for added balance and easy watering. The high neck design of the product prevents water from pouring out of the top when you tip the water can forward.
  • Versatility: You can tip the water can’s rose up to get a gentle spray or down to get a thicker flow of water. To get the water really flowing, you need to tip the water can a lot.This allows you to go between a sprinkle and a dribble without much adjustment other than the pouring angle. The design of the can gives you a lot of choices for how to hold the can to get the flow you desire.
  • Holding Capacity: This Haws indoor watering can is made from high-quality plastic material and can hold a lot of water. This makes it so you don’t have to refill the container in between watering your plants or flowers.


  • Downspout Adaptor may Crack: The downspout adapter on this product may crack soon after purchase.

If you need something for inside, this choice will work, but for outside needs, consider these:

  • Haws Practican Outdoor Plastic Watering Can
  • Haws Traditional Peter Rabbit Metal Watering Can.

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2. Bloem Aqua Rite Watering Can

Bloem Aqua Rite Watering Can, 36 oz, Union Red (AW15-12)

  • Holds 36 oz.
  • Comfortable, easy-to-use handle
  • Long stem spout controls water flow

If you’re seeking an indoor watering can, the Bloem Aqua Rite Watering Can is a great choice. This small option is functional, cute, and fairly-priced. Let’s look at some of its other features.


  • Thin Spout: The thin spout on this watering can allows for easy viewing of the water level in the can. This way, you can see when it needs to be refilled.
  • Great for Indoor Use: This container works well for indoor plants because you can position it to only hit the roots instead of spreading the water over the flowers and leaves.
  • A Spill-free Design: This small watering can has a spout that is curved and positioned to prevent spilling water between the plants and the tap.
  • Support: This product is designed for comfort and support. While pouring, you can slip your hand into the handle without worrying about dropping it.


  • Very Small: Some may find the size of this watering can inconvenient and it’s best for those with small plants to maintain.

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3. Bloem Easy Pour Watering Can

Sale Bloem Easy Pour Watering Can, 2.6 Gallon, Black (20-47287CP)

  • Holds 2.6 gallons = 333 oz.
  • Easy dual handle design with one hinged handle for…
  • 2-in-1 Adjustable water spout rotates to offer a…

The Bloem 2.6 Gallon Easy Pour Black Watering Can is easy to pour and carry due to its uniquely designed handle. If you’re looking for an indoor watering can, consider the following:


  • Rotating Spout: You can choose between a steady stream or a gentle shower with the adjustable, rotating spout on this watering can.
  • Holding Capacity: This watering can holds over two gallons of water which is useful when you have a lot of plants to water. It has dual handles to accommodate various hand positions for your comfort.
  • Sturdy Material: This is crafted from sturdy plastic and will last a long time. The hole for filling is on the container’s sides, meaning that the handles won’t obstruct the process.


  • Slipping Handle: The double handle on this watering can slip out of place easily. Take this into consideration if you buy this model.
  • Hard to get a Light Water Flow: Some may find the nozzle hard to maneuver. The product doesn’t’ always produce an even or steady water flow.

Watering plants indoors calls for different circumstances than outdoor watering. The best option is to research your needs and make choices accordingly.

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4. Behrens Steel Watering Can

Sale Behrens 210 2-1/2-Gallon Steel Watering Can, Silver

  • High quality watering can
  • Durable the strength of steel; Weather resistant…
  • Vintage/classic look

This high-quality can has a classic, vintage look, is made from recyclable materials, and won’t rust from adverse weather conditions. In addition, it holds a lot of water, which is unique for a small metal watering can.


  • Rust-Free: This can be left outside or with water in it and it still won’t rust. The container is crafted from durable materials and will last much longer than most tin watering cans.
  • A Wide Spray Pattern: The Behrens 210 2.5 Gallon Steel Watering Can has a wide sprinkle pattern that allows you to send the water far. To get a full blast of water, just tip the can forward. You can also control the spray pattern by not tipping it forward as much.


  • A non-removable Sprinkle Head: This product’s sprinkle head doesn’t come off. So if you wanted one that comes off, keep that in mind. This won’t be a problem for most gardeners, however.

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5. Cado Watering Can

Cado 63065 2Gal Watering Can, Hunter Green, 2 gallon

  • Plastic Blow-Mold 2 Gallon Watering Can
  • Size: 17″L x 7.25″W x 13″H
  • Color: Hunter Green

If you’re looking for a completely no-frills, basic watering can at a cheap price, look no further than the Cado 63065 Watering Can. It comes in 4 different colors, has a 2-gallon capacity, and gets the job done.


  • Affordable: This watering can comes in at the lowest price on our list.
  • Decent Size: 2 gallon capacity is pretty good for the price point.


  • Blow-Molded: Compared to other plastic molding options, this is a cheaper and less durable method that can lead to deterioration with rough use.
  • Short Spout: The spout is short and stout, which makes for harder access to garden beds or out-of-reach pots.

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6. Rainmaker Watering Can

Rainmaker Watering Can – 3.2 Gallon

  • This Rainmaker watering can is made of heavy duty…
  • This can is built for extensive use for multiple…
  • The Rainmaker watering can is light weight and…

The Rainmaker can is the most heavy-duty “workhorse” watering can in our list. It also holds the most water, so you won’t have to make as many trips back and forth to the faucet. If you want something that you can kick around and be a bit rough with, this is the one for you.


  • Capacity: 3.2 gallons is the largest capacity on our list, making this a great option for larger gardens.
  • Heavy-Duty: The plastic used is thick, durable, and can withstand a bit of a beating, ideal for outdoor garden use for years.


  • Aesthetics: It’s not the most beautiful can on the market, but it’s not meant to be – this is a utilitarian watering can.
  • Weight: When filled to the brim, 3.2 gallons of water can be quite heavy and hard to lift if you’re a smaller person.

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7. IMEEA Stainless Steel Watering Can

IMEEA Watering Can Pot 18/8 Stainless Steel Indoor House Plants Long Spout, 30oz / 900ml

When it comes to an indoor watering can, aesthetics are an inarguable consideration. Who wants an ugly watering can causing an eyesore in their home? This is a stainless steel, beautifully designed can with a long spout for easy access to your hard-to-reach plants.


  • Beautiful Design: Let’s face it, this metal watering can looks sleek. It’s designed to fit in well a modern indoor houseplant jungle.
  • Long Spout: Makes it easy to reach out of the way houseplants, hanging planters, etc.


  • Capacity: 30 ounces is decent, but may require frequent refilling if you have a thriving, large indoor garden.
  • Dimensions: Make sure you understand how small this watering can is so you’re not surprised when you open the box. IMEEA has larger models if you need them!

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8. Bosmere Haws Indoor Watering Can

Sale Bosmere Haws Handy Indoor Plastic Watering Can, Sage, 1 US Pint

  • Small, well-balanced, mini version of the classic…
  • Made of injection molded plastic
  • Used for indoor plant watering especially orchids,…

This is the miniature, indoor version of our top pick for watering cans. It’s cute, holds around 16oz of water, and gets the job done if you don’t have much to water. If you’re a houseplant addict like we are, there are a lot of better options that hold more water. It can get frustrating to run back and forth to the sink as you water your plant babies.

But for those of you with a few plants and a penchant for beautiful products, this is the one for you.


  • Well-Balanced: Just like its outdoor counterpart, this design is unique to Bosmere Haws and balances perfectly in your hand.


  • Low Capacity: At 16 ounces, this is the smallest capacity watering can we recommend. It’s almost at the novelty size, but will still get the job done for small indoor gardens.

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Wrapping Up

The Bosmere Haws Long Reach Watering Can is the clear winner out of all of the cans on the list, due to its durable materials and large holding capacity.

It’ll let you keep your plants nice and hydrated, last a long time, and will last throughout the years, making the investment well worth the price.

The Green Thumbs Behind This Article:
Kevin Espiritu
Founder Did this article help you? × How can we improve it? × Thanks for your feedback!

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Last update on 2020-01-24 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API


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