During a recent editorial meeting, we started chatting about 'magical' modern conveniences, or physical items we can't imagine living without. These aren't actually items we'd die without (if they were, we'd be writing about people, places, and food—not bluetooth converters), but they do make a noticeable difference in our day-to-day. They're also incredibly telling—while Emily's are mostly home and beauty-related, Leslie's are all time-saving tech, while Marilynn's address staying happy at home, and Hannah's fall somewhere in between. Here are the three things that make our daily lives that much better:
1. Natori Feathers Bra: I've shared my love of this bra over the years countless times and it's still my favorite. It's seamless under thin T-shirts, provides lift without being uncomfortable, and is undetectable under even the sheerest of white dresses.
2. Oribe Dry Texturizing Spray: As someone who can go a week between hair washing, I rely heavily on products to keep oil and dirt at bay. Though I've tried just about every dry shampoo/texturizing spray on the market, this is the only one that I consistently go through and have to re-buy. The smell is insane (people always compliment me on it when we hug), it adds serious volume, and makes old hair look sexy and tousled.
3. S'well Bottle: I know this sounds rather dramatic, but if I don't have my Swell bottle, I can go days without drinking water. I'll simply survive on coffee, iced tea, lemonade—whatever it is that's not a large glass of water. I love everything about it: the small opening at the top, the fact that I can't see how much is left inside, and how it keeps things ice-cold. It has a permanent place by my bed at night, gets stored alongside my computer in my work tote, and is always with me in my car. Needless to say, it's seriously upped my hydration game ever since coming into my life a few years back.
1. Car Bluetooth Linker: Until writing this list, I honestly considered myself technology-averse. I use my phone for work, but put it down at my first opportunity (I'm prone to forget it at the office or in my car on weekends) and often do the same with my laptop. But there are a few select items—all of which are tech-related—that make my life significantly easier on a daily basis, without interfering with it. At the top of the list is this extremely simple, $15 gadget which turns my ten-year-old car into a Bluetooth equipped vehicle! I love that I can turn on whatever I was last playing on my phone, without even taking my phone out of my purse. I simply turn on my car, press the button "On," and *boom,* The Daily Podcast begins playing from my car speakers right where I last left off.
2. Sonos Speakers with Built-In Alexa: Alexa's somewhat creepy listening-in aside, I love my Sonos Speakers with it. I use them to summon podcasts, playlists, and audiobooks that play from three linked speakers in my house (in my kitchen, bathroom, and living room), without having to look at a screen. Every morning I ask, "Alexa, play 'The Daily'" and in the evenings, she DJs dinner.
3. Cuisinart Small Batch Coffee Maker with Hot Water Boiler: For a while, I swore by my Aero Press. As the only coffee drinker in my house, I loved the easy-to-use single-serve press, but found myself wanting something even more streamlined for early, bleary-eyed mornings before the gym. Recently, I found an automatic coffee maker that can do it all. One side has a setting for brewing as little as one cup of coffee (which was my main complaint about most coffee makers), and the other is a water boiler, which I use for brewing herbal tea each night. It's so easy to use, gets me out of the house quicker, and takes up far less space than two separate machines!
1. Zingerman's Funky Chunky Dark Chocolate Cookie Recipe: I bake on a semi-daily basis and often feel as though I've tried every chocolate chip cookie recipe under the sun. This one is my ultimate because it has depth of flavor without requiring dough refrigeration overnight, and is my ideal texture of chewy but not too doughy. Every time I make it for Nick or anyone else, it makes them instantly like me. (Side note: I use Trader Joe's Pound Plus Dark Chocolate, which is essential to this recipe's magical ability to make anyone your friend.)
2. Rosé: I was worried listing alcohol would cause concern but someone from our team said it would only be worrisome if this article was called "3 Things I Can't Go to Work Without" so here we are. I have a glass of rosé each evening and thoroughly enjoy what is, to me, a delightful cross between a crisp white and a full-bodied red. I think it goes well with any food, and love the color (it even coordinates with my pillows and rug). I prefer a more dry rosé from Provence, and try to stay under $10 a bottle during the week, so my go-to is 'Moonlight and Roses' from Trader Joe's.
3. Dyson Vacuum Cleaner: I'm unapologetically effusive about our vacuum cleaner, which I was originally hesitant to purchase due to the price. Growing up, the lifecycle of a vacuum was about one year in our family, and I thought that was the norm. This slim model (it hides in a corner of our kitchen, mounted on the wall) has withstood four years of daily vacuuming (I might be a little OCD) without a single hitch. It's easy to use due to its lightness and compactness, and easy to clean and empty (the canister lid pops out with the push of a button). This cleaning buddy is beyond practical—it's essential.
1. Super Fast Wall Phone Charger and Car Charger: Every so often, my Dad will shoot me a text that says something along the lines of, "Just ordered you this thing I read about that is supposed to double the memory space of your computer" or "This dual port is said to charge your phone 5x faster than a regular apple wall plug." These chargers were the result of said texts. I'm not sure how the tech behind it works, but both chargers somehow charge my phone, or any other USB-port device, at lightning speed and are now both invaluable to me.
2. Glossier Cloud Paints: I've used this product every time that I've worn makeup since I bought them a year ago. 'Beam' is my favorite shade (I own five of the six available shades, which probably makes me a #GlossierAddict), but lately I've been loving the look of layering 'Dusk' underneath 'Beam' for a sun-kissed glow. They give a perfect sheer, buildable wash of cheek color that actually lasts throughout the day.
3. Tangleteezer Hair Brush: I have unruly, curly hair, and this brush has been a lifesaver many times. I only ever brush my hair in the shower, and this brush is the best one I've tried.
We'd love to hear: What are the items you can't live without? Tell us in the comments below!