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About Us

Welcome to Modern Castle! My name is Derek Hales, Founder and Editor-in-Chief of Modern Castle. Since I was old enough to start buying my own stuff, I have always heavily researched virtually any significant purchase.

Years ago, most of that research had to be done by talking with the in-store staff, or asking friends and family. Today, the online world provides a virtually endless volume of reviews and information available online about an endless carousel of products. Unfortunately, not all reviews are created equally.

I created Modern Castle to help change that.

Our mission here is simple: we want to help you discover, research, and select the best products for your home. To fulfill our mission we are continually testing new products, researching, analyzing, and improving our review process.

Subjective opinions and analysis can be helpful, especially when they are provided by experts who truly understand the product. However, we believe that objective testing data is even more critical. To that end, we try to design tests and add scoring methods to all of our reviews that provide hard data capable of revealing the product’s performance. We believe coupling objective testing data with expert analysis can create a more helpful and informative review.

Creating the exceptional tests, reviews, and guides of Modern Castle is a team effort.

Meet the Team



Founder & Editor-in-Chief

My name is Derek Hales. I’m responsible for overseeing everything on Modern Castle, making sure our review process is always being improved, and researching new products to test and analyze. I have a passion for creating extraordinary reviews, videos, and visuals to help my readers find exactly what they need.



Reviewer & Photographer

Chris is my cousin — he works with me on a day-to-day basis helping to test and create the best reviews possible. He is the man behind the camera for most photographs and videos, and also handles most of the video editing and video production. Additionally, Chris completes important research and helps analyze product performance.



Reviewer & Designer

Kayla is my sister and heads up design for Modern Castle. In addition to testing products, she also helps to ensure that all of the design and visual elements look beautiful, creating the best possible experience for our readers. Kayla has a Master’s Degree in Product Design, which provides her with a unique perspective on how product design impacts performance.

Help Getting Started

Not sure where to begin? We’re here to help!

Right now, our focus is on vacuum cleaners. The best place to get started is on the vacuum cleaner reviews page. You’ll find a complete list of all vacuums we’ve reviewed, in addition to detailed information about how we test and score those vacuums.

If you have a suggestion for a particular product or category of products we should consider testing please send us an email via our contact form.