’Tis the season to be materialistic, so I thought this would be a great week to talk about some of the products I loved most this year, across some of the categories that matter to me most. Let’s dive in…
I was so fucking excited when I found out Fun Factory was making a wand vibrator, and it did not disappoint. In classic Fun Factory fashion, it’s bright orange, has pleasingly clicky buttons, and might be the rumbliest toy I’ve ever tried in its category.
I actually interviewed a wand aficionado this year who mentioned to me that she thinks the Vim is slightly too rumbly, and that it made her more aware that she actually likes a little buzziness in her wand vibes. I understand where she’s coming from, but the Vim’s rumbliness is one of the main reasons I reach for it. I still absolutely adore my Magic Wand Rechargeable, but when I want truly deep, low-pitched vibrations, it’s tough to go past the Vim.
Lovense toys, with their excellent long-distance capabilities, have been an important part of my sex life with my partner (who lives 500 miles away from me) for years. This one was probably our most-used Lovense toy in 2023 – it’s a vibrator that wraps around the shaft of a dick, or, conveniently for us, a chastity cage. I can then control its lusciously rumbly vibrations from wherever I am in the world (as long as there’s internet access, natch). There is nothing quite like giving, or getting, a Bluetooth orgasm!
Is this the strongest or rumbliest wand vibe out there? Certainly not. Is it cute, portable, and dependable? Sure is.
I trust Magic Wand, because their products tend to be well-engineered and just work the way they’re supposed to. The Micro is no different. I’ve brought it on numerous overnight trips over the course of the year, when my normal go-to clitoral vibe had to be left at home, and it’s always done the trick.
CLOTHES & ACCESSORIES
I just received this a few days ago, as a Christmas gift from my spouse’s very generous parents, but I’ve already been wearing it so much that it warrants placement on this list!
I mean… it’s a cashmere hoodie. What more can I say? It’s obscenely soft, wildly comfortable, and has been helping me a lot with the temperature regulation issues that come along with my fibromyalgia. I love it!!
Yes, more knitwear… I am a Taurus, after all…
This was a findom gift from my sweetheart and I love it. It’s a super classic-looking garment and is extremely warm due to its cable knit. Just stunning.
I’ve kept an eye out for this bag on Etsy and eBay for many years, but usually it’s selling for $700+ because the red colorway is more rare than standard blacks, browns, and navies (I already have a black Willis and love it). However, this year I happened to see one on Etsy priced at about $200, and I had to snap it up.
Red is practically a neutral in my wardrobe; there are few outfits that a pop of red won’t improve, if you ask me. So this has been a super versatile addition to my bag collection, and it’s also roomy enough for the excessive amount of stuff I like to cart around with me (notebook and pen, Kindle, headphones, wallet, hand sanitizer, lipstick, setting powder, and on and on). Vintage Coach leather is also so much nicer than what they make nowadays – it’s thick, smooth, and luxurious. Swoon!
Blundstones were all the rage when I was in high school. Admittedly, the fact that many of us were artsy hipsters who listened to too much Fleet Foxes probably had something to do with it, but I always found it astonishing when I’d show up at a party and see a dozen pairs of Blunnies (as the cool kids called ‘em) kicked aside by the door. (And inevitably, a group text would be sent out the following day when someone went home wearing someone else’s boots by mistake.)
Style-wise, I was never one to follow the pack, especially back then, so I resisted the pull of these iconic boots. But this year (fully 12 years since I graduated from high school), I saw that Blundstone had put out a new high-heeled version of their classic shoe. At first, I didn’t think I needed them, but they kept haunting my sartorial fantasies – and then a sponsored post client insisted on paying me with a Mastercard gift card instead of actual money (probably for tax reasons; who the hell knows), which I took as a sign to buy these beautiful boots.
They are the perfect finishing touch on autumnal/wintry outfits where I want to seem casual but still pulled-together and feminine. They’re decently comfy for a heeled shoe, too. I love them!
BEAUTY & SELF-CARE
Along with Wellbutrin, trauma therapy, robust emotional self-regulation skills, and supportive loved ones, this lamp is one of the absolutely key tools in my mental health toolbox. Using it for 40ish minutes each morning (or afternoon, as the case may be) helps ease some of the symptoms of seasonal affective disorder I deal with every fall and winter. I’m using it while I write this, in fact. I love it and feel very blessed to own it.
Quite possibly the best menstrual cup ever, and I say that as someone who’s used various different ones over about 15 years. This one is comfortable, has a silicone “shield” to prevent leaks/spillage when you empty it, and also has a silicone pull-tab that makes retrieval so much easier than it is with typical pokey menstrual cup stems. Not much else to say about this one – it does its job, and it does it well.
I bought this in early 2020 as the pandemic was starting to kick off, anticipating that I might get back into video games in a big way… and boy oh boy, have I used it a LOT since then. I’ve played 230+ hours of Fire Emblem: Three Houses, 215+ hours of Breath of the Wild, 190+ hours of Tears of the Kingdom, 60+ hours of Pokémon Legends: Arceus, and 40+ hours of Stardew Valley, just to name a few recent faves.
With fibro, there are plenty of times when I can’t even muster the energy to read a book or write in my journal – but I can usually still manage to play video games, albeit with the Switch propped on a pillow in front of me so I only have to use minimal arm strength to hold it up. It’s really been a life-saver for me, this year and all the other pandemic years thus far.
I’m sure there’s lots of stuff I’ve forgotten to put on this list and will kick myself for omitting later, but these are the things that jumped to mind for me as I wrote this on a leisurely Thursday afternoon. Feel free to hit reply and let me know which products in any of these categories you enjoyed most in 2023!
(P.S. This was a rare free edition of Sub Missives; if you're a free subscriber but you'd like to receive my writing in your inbox more regularly, and/or you want to support my work, you can sign up for a premium subscription at $5/month and you'll get a weekly essay from me. Thanks, love ya! Happy holidays and happy new year, friends!)