Last updated: March 1, 2023
These are the 21 things around my home that I love the most.
You’ll find the best pillow, weighted blanket, air purifier, robot vacuum, toiletries, coffee gear, and lots more.
The Overview section has a thumbnail image of each item, the product name, and purchase link.
Beneath that are sub-sections with detailed descriptions on why I like it and how I use them. A few have real-world photographs.
If you buy something on Amazon, I get a small commission.
- (1) Fuji Instax Square Camera: on Amazon, my writeup
- (2) Levoit Air Purifier: on Amazon, my writeup
- (3) Roborock Q7 Vacuum: on Amazon, my writeup
- (4) Youdgee Massage Gun: on Amazon, my writeup
- (5) Zen Chi Buckwheat Pillow: on Amazon, my writeup
- (6) Weighted Blanket: on Amazon, my writeup
- (7) XGIMI MoGo Pro Projector: on Amazon, my writeup
- (8) Neo 120 Bidet: on Amazon, my writeup
- (9) Squatty Potty: on Amazon, my writeup
- (10) Magsol Magnesium Deodorant: on Amazon, my writeup
- (11) Vanicream Moisturizing Cream: on Amazon, my writeup
- (12) Vanicream Facial Cleanser: on Amazon, my writeup
- (13) Basic Care Hair Regrowth Treatment: on Amazon, my writeup
- (14) AeroPress Coffee Maker: on Amazon, my writeup
- (15) Hario Coffee Grinder: on Amazon, my writeup
- (16) Bonavita Kettle: on Amazon, my writeup
- (17) Zojirushi Water Heater: on Amazon, my writeup
- (18) Nutribullet Blender: on Amazon, my writeup
- (19) OXO Good Grips Pop Container 0.3 Qt: on Amazon, my writeup
- (20) OXO Good Grips Pop Container 1.7 Qt: on Amazon, my writeup
(21) Echo Show 8: on Amazon, my writeup
(1) Fuji Instax Square Camera
You should probably take more pictures of your friends and family. This is a fun way to do that. I use this instant camera to take photos of my friends who have been to my apartment at least two times. I think that’s a good filter: you don’t want a bunch of photos of random people who just showed up to your house once. You want to feature your VIP friends. Ones you would invite to your birthday party.
Film cost is about $1 per photo. I also like the larger Fuji Instax Wide Camera. It takes larger photos, and the film is the same price. My last company, Museum Hack, owes a great debt to that Fuji product. We took a picture of every single customer on every single tour – thousands and thousands of instant photos. Pro tip: You absolutely MUST write the person’s name in the white space beneath the photo. It is specifically meant for writing things down there, and these instant photos look naked without handwriting in that area.
(2) LEVOIT Air Purifier
I went through a phase in 2021 of being obsessed with indoor air quality. This air purifier was among the best sub-$300 filters I could find. Every few weeks I take the filter outside and dust it off. We also bought one of these for our apartment in Hilo, Hawaii.
BTW: when was the last time you changed the filters on your air conditioner! They are super cheap and should be replaced often. Do it now!!
(3) Roborock S4 Max Robot Vacuum
It is so nice to have my house regularly swept clean in between housekeeper visits. I’ve purchased and used several robot vacuum cleaners over the past 15 years, including the iRobot Roombas. The Roborock brand is my favorite. I’ve recommended this one a lot, and at least 5 friends bought it. They all love it. They say that they’re impressed by the LiDAR room mapping and the smart cleaning.
Before this, I owned one of the most expensive iRobots that self-emptied. That was an admittedly nice feature, but not nice enough to trump how much better the Roborock is. Once you see how the Roborock units clean with intelligent room mapping, the Roombas feel stupid.
- Buy it on Amazon
- Advanced models from this same company get good reviews. My sister bought the advanced mopping version, for $100 more, but after several months she still hasn’t tried the mopping feature. “It seems complicated to add the mopping-specific water.”
(4) Youdgee Massage Gun
When the Theragun at $299 was the only option, and then this came out for $79, it was a no-brainer. Now there are a lot of other knock-off battery massagers. I don’t know which one is the best. Sometimes this unit is on sale for under $40. Several friends have purchased this. I’ve bought a few as gifts. I like mine. After 1.5 years, the battery holds up well. I use it after workouts or to relax tense muscles.
(5) Buckwheat Pillow
Have you ever slept on a buckwheat pillow? They’re great: easily adjustable, cool temperature, extremely supportive.
The pillow is just literally a fabric case filled with buckwheat hulls. This is what a bunch of buckwheat looks like inside the pillow:
I’ve slept with a buckwheat pillow for years. I like these pillows so much that I’ll often ship one of these ahead of time to my hotel so it is waiting for me when I arrive. (Like when I went to the St. Regis in Puerto Rico.) Or, if I have a suitcase, I’ll bring it with me. This is a product that I’ve recommended to friends and, for some, they become obsessed and say it is their favorite pillow. Others hate the slight noise that the buckwheat hulls make. I think you either love it or you’ll hate that it is “noisy.”
(6) Weighted blanket
I started sleeping with a weighted blanket in December 2020. I’m always looking for hacks to help me sleep better. This one worked! It feels very comforting. I take it with me to hotels sometimes, too.
You want to consider two things with a weighted blanket: the weight of the blanket, and the size.
For weight: 15 lb is a good start for one person who weighs 130 to 170 lbs. Look for online guides to see how heavy you want the blanket to be. Larger people need heavier blankets. Smaller people need lighter blankets.
For size: Note that many weighted blankets sell as “partial covers,” which means they aren’t meant to entirely cover your bed, just your body. But I want the blanket to be my entire top cover. If you want that, too, then be sure to look at the measurements of your weighted blanket to ensure it will be large enough to fit the entirety of your bed.
(7) XGIMI MoGo Pro Portable Projector
This micro-projector is probably the biggest splurge on my list. You don’t actually NEED this item, but it is fun. I set this up next to my bed, on a tripod, and then point it at the ceiling. It it is very neat to watch YouTube videos like this. There’s a built-in battery, although mine is always plugged in to the wall. The integrated speaker is good enough for personal use. I haven’t figured out how to get Netflix to work on it, but my friend Cathryn (who also raves about this device) says it is doable and easy.
- Buy it on Amazon
- Pair it with a Roku Streambar to add easy Netflix and a great speaker
(8) Neo 120 Bidet
I won’t try to convince you to start using a bidet. You should, because it is so much cleaner than only using toilet paper. What I’ll say is that this is one of the Top 5 products that I regularly recommend and buy for friends. For some, it has changed their lives. I’ve purchased and installed dozens of LUXE bidets, literally DOZENS, of this exact unit. I install it in every long-term house rental, in my apartments, at my parents homes, etc.
Now, I know what you’re thinking: “But what about fancy bidets! With hot water and seat heaters!”
Yes. Those are nice. You can do that. But this is cheap, and fast, and easy to install. Many of the advanced bidets require a hot water or power connection, which are not easy to add near the toilet. Check and see if you have those now, or if you’re willing to run an extension cord to your toilet. I’m not. It looks tacky.
If you want a bidet today, and you want to start right now living a more clean, hygienic lifestyle, buy this bidet. Install it, use it for a few weeks, and you can always upgrade later to a nicer one.
(9) Squatty Potty
My friend Max Lugavere bought me this. Studies show that we’re meant to… never mind. I don’t want to talk about so much toilet stuff. Either you know the benefits of this, or you’re not interested.
(10) MAGSOL Magnesium Deodorant
I tried a few non-aluminum deodorants and this one was my favorite. Women seem to like how this one smells, too. Thank you to whoever originally recommended this.
(11) Vanicream Moisturizing Cream
My hands get dry. I use this as hand cream. Pretty straightforward. I like the Vanicream brand because it doesn’t have fragrance that can irritate my sensitive skin.
(12) Vanicream Facial Cleanser
For whenever I remember to wash my face in the morning and at night.
(13) Basic Care Hair Regrowth Treatment
Guys. Just get this. Generic Rogaine. I apply the drops twice per day. Women can benefit from this, too, but not nearly as much as men. My related article: Hair Loss: What I’m Doing About It.
- Buy it on Amazon for a six-month supply
Coffee and Kitchen
(14) Coffee Maker: AeroPress
When I want to make coffee at home, this is the best, most compact, quality hardware. It wins awards.
Disclaimer: I own about 0.001% of this AeroPress company in a fund that I invested in.
- AeroPress, Buy it on Amazon
- AeroPress Home Page: “Brew the best coffee you’ve ever tasted in under a minute.”
(15) Hario Grinder
My friend Zach Klein first turned me on to the Zen of hand-grinding coffee. There’s something special to working with my hands to process the beans. It takes about 2 minutes to fill up the container with grounds.
A lot of the tea nerds that I know use this kettle. Coffee people like it, too. The kettle can hold an exactly specific temperature, which is necessary for certain types of teas. I’m happy with it. It seems a bit expensive, but I’ve owned and used it for years.
(17) Zojirushi Water Heater
These are very popular in Asia but few people seem to have them in America. Using vacuum pressure and a tiny bit of electricity, this device keeps nearly-boiling water always available in the kitchen. You can set the temperature to be constantly at 160, 175, 195, or 208F. Stop waiting for good water to boil. I use it for making black tea, bone broth, adding hot water to soup, herbal tea, etc. When you get one of these, you’ll use hot water a lot more.
(18) NutriBullet Blender
The motor is strong. It works. I’ve used it for years. I make smoothies with this.
(19) OXO Good Grips POP Container – 0.3 Qt
I love these OXO containers. I use them for tea, spices, powders (like creatine), and other stuff.
(20) OXO Good Grips POP Container – 1.7 Qt
This is the larger version of the above container. I put chips in these, coffee beans, bigger stuff. I really love these containers so I included them twice in this gear post. They’re expensive, but sometimes you can get them as a set for sale.
(21) Echo Show
I have Amazon Echo devices in every single room of my homes. It is one of the easiest ways to add whole-house audio. I love being able to easily listen to music in different rooms, all at the same time. The Show devices are sort of hit or miss. I bought the 15-inch and it was just TOO MUCH. But I’ve come to love this little 8-inch one and it lives in the corner of my kitchen. I have it rotating some photos as a screen saver. The speaker is good on it, too.
I love gadgets. I spend way too much time researching things before I buy them. And then I will return basically anything that I don’t love.
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Do you have a suggestion for something I should check out and include in my next gear post? Let me know in the comments!
For quirky gift and gear ideas, check this list out: Awesome Stuff Gift Guide 2018
Original post: April 6, 2022 -- Last updated: March 1, 2023