Everyone says you learn what you’re really like and what you really like in your thirties. Everyone is right. I turn 31 this weekend so I thought I’d share the items I’ve declared as my top thirty favorites-my MVPs- while I’m still thirty years old.
I’m keeping books off this list because there are far too many. These items are in no particular order-they’re all equally first place in my book.
1. My Robe and Blanket. Who would I be if these weren’t on the list, friends? This robe has been with me through a whole lot. It’s made the move from Virginia to Texas, has survived a miscarriage and a pregnancy, has kept me cozy nearly every single day for almost four years and never complains. I finally bought the blanket in the same material in 2019 and it is just as loyal-I sleep with it every single night.
2. Hustler Jeans. I found my perfect jeans in 2018 and am never letting them go. They’re tight in the right places, loose in the right places and are the most flattering pair of denim I’ve ever put on my body. I recommend them to everyone and they come in so many shades you’ll be set for life.
3. Natalie Martin Dresses. I waited to purchase this for over a year because it’s an investment, but after looking at the holes in my wardrobe I realized the things I were wearing over and over again were my long dresses. I have two of these in the long sleeve caftan style and they are my very favorite to reach for all year long.
4. Veja Sneakers. These cool girl sneakers had me concerned at first. I began seeing them everywhere years ago, finally bought a pair and felt like the tongue of the sneaker was cutting my foot open. Thankfully, someone warned me to give it a week and I am forever grateful to them. These shoes are my bread and butter. I have multiple pairs and reach for them more than anyone else. Yes, they’re an investment. But they are worth every penny.
5. Align Leggings. I’ve amassed 10 pairs over the years. These are the absolute, hands down, without a doubt best. So comfortable, so flattering–they’re not called “the naked pant” for nothing. The shade range is second to none (and the ‘Lavender Dew’ is on my birthday list.)
6. Janessa Leone Hats. These hats are an investment worth their weight in gold. I kept spending money on hats that ended up losing their shape after a couple wears, weren’t especially flattering or ended up getting damaged within the year. These hats have the best shape in the business and are famous for their packability making them an absolute winner in my book. I’m a huge fan of this brand for less expensive hats that also have a phenomenal shape and durability.
7. Scattergories. Our house just doesn’t feel like a home unless I know I have a fully stocked game cabinet-this one topping the list. This game is my ultimate nostolgia. My parents would play this game with their friends and I remember looking up at the table, listening to the bizarre words and all the laughter and defending and couldn’t wait to be able to join in one day. It’s a family favorite and I still reach for it more often than not.
8. 30 oz Yeti Rambler. I love this thing so much. If you’ve been around here for years, you’e heard about it far too many times. I pour smoothies in here and pack a straw knowing it’ll stay ice cold for hours, but this really shines for coffee and tea. I love letting tea steep in here while I shower before bed, crawling under the sheets, grabbing my book and opening this up to find it’s still piping hot. Year after year, it’s still my favorite.
9. Vitamix. This is something I have loved for a decade. When I was 20, going to college in California and constantly calling a Jamba Juice smoothie breakfast, I decided to ask one day what blenders they used. Oshiomogho and I ordered one to keep at his sister’s apartment and we have used it almost every day since. We upgraded to the newest version after nearly 3,650 days of use and still use it daily.
10. Le Crueset and Staub Dutch Ovens. If you haven’t caught on by now, I’ve been a bit of an old lady for most of my life. This has been one of my favorite things since I was 20 as well. It’s perfect for every stew, soup and sauce, does perfectly in the oven for hours, is stunning on the stove and cleans beautifully even after the toughest stains.
11. Boll & Branch Bedding. Up until last year, I didn’t care too much about our sheets. I noticed they were wearing and staining and didn’t feel all that wonderful to crawl into every night. I can say I was influenced because it seemed like every blogger I respect and trust began talking about this bedding. I switched our pillows over to Boll & Branch a long time ago but just upgraded the sheets last month and you guys–we are absolutely obsessed. I’ve never had softer, sturdier, more incredible sheets in my life. We have these sheets and will rave about them to anyone who will listen.
12. Ring Concierge Rings. I spent the majority of my twenties buying cheap jewelry I cycled through quickly because it would fall apart our tun a strange color. I decided a few years ago I’d rather wait to save for jewelry that would last than O gifted me with a white gold and rose gold version of this band for our 5 year anniversary. I wear them every single day on my right hand.
13. Sleep Cap. I’ll never stop raving about this thing. It made my Best Purchases of 2017 list and has topped the list of my heart ever since (too much?) I noticed the difference it made in the health of my hair immediately and, even better, I notice the difference in the health of my hair without it.
14. Eye Pillow. I’ve talked about this many times before as well, but this pillow is the perfect weight, has the most subtle and gentle lavender scent and is the most soothing sendoff to sleep. O confiscated this and slept with it every single night for the better part of a year so now we each have one.
15. Headphones. I got these in 2018 and wear them every day. They are noise cancelling without being the make-your-brain-hurt kind and are comfortable enough to wear for hours.
16. Mansur Gavriel Tote. This purse is the workhorse of my closet. I’m not precious with my bags. I need them to be able to carry diapers and laptops and water bottles and snacks while looking classic and beautiful and this bag does all of those things.
17. Davines Curl Products. I discovered these at one of my favorite hair salons and I’ve been loyal to them ever since-especially to this curl cream. I love the deep conditioners and notice such a difference when I use them-I rotate between three deep conditioners-one being this tub of hair mask for when I wear my hair curly and the other being this one when I wear my hair straight.
18. Briogeo Hair Products. Enter the third conditioner I rotate. I’ve used this for over a year this is just a phenomenal conditioner. It makes my hair feel fantastic and is a win all around. The real gem, though, is the Scalp Revival Exfoliating Shampoo. Oh my word, you guys. Everyone’s scalp needs this product. It feels like a loofah and mouthwash for your hair and we all know, healthy hair that grows long and strong starts with an exfoliated scalp. I’m really tempted to say “if you try one thing, let it be this” but that’s how I feel about this whole list.
19. Olaplex Bond Builder. There is no product that compares to this-it’s in a league of its own. Once exclusive to hair salons, this bond builder strengthens and smooths your hair strand by strand. It’s not a shampoo or conditioner but a treatment. I like to sleep with this drenching my hair once a month and it makes an enormous difference.
20. Eyebrow Palette. I’ve been loyal to this eyebrow palette for 11 years now. I was not really blessed in the eyebrow department and even for the days I don’t wear makeup in the week, I’ll still brush up my brows and add a bit of this tinted wax. It’s the single non-toxic product I still use on a daily basis because it is just the best there is.
21. Eyeliner. There are a few questions I get asked close to once a week and one of them is “how do you do your winged eyeliner?” My eyeliner takes me seconds to do every day and I attribute it to this eyeliner.
22. Vintners Daughter. Again, this made my 2020 favorites list because this revived my skin in a way nothing else before it has. One jar lasted over six months so while it is so, so pricey for skincare and I cringe when it’s time to repurchase, it’s a product I’ll be loyal to for life (something I was warned about and let’s just say no one was lying.)
23. 7 Seconds Leave-In Conditioner and Detangler. This is my ULTIMATE hair product. It needed all-caps. It’s that important. I’ve talked about this so many times but if I was forced to choose just one hair product for the rest of my days, it’d be this. It is the only detangler that has ever worked for me and leaves my hair soft and shiny.
24. Appointed Planner. This is my favorite planner I’ve ever used. I’m the type of person that needs a dry erase planner on the wall, reminders on my phone as well as a paper planner. The sections are exactly what I need to have a planner for both motherhood and work.
25. Sugar House Ceramics Paint Palette. These sell out in minutes so you have to sign up for the email list and follow them on social media to get the heads up, but this is my very favorite palette I’ve ever owned.
26. Scanner. I waited far too long to upgrade my scanner. I found myself asking others to scan my work last year and realized it was just time to upgrade. As far as scanners go, this one is priced incredibly and does exactly what it says it will do. It’s.a win through and through.
27. Peloton. I’ve had this bike for less than a month and friends, it makes the list. I am here to say it is absolutely worth the investment. I wish the app wasn’t as pricey as it is but I love that so many people can create their own profile under the same account which makes it so much more affordable than our (now cancelled) gym membership.
28. Nike Sneakers. As far as workouts go, I’m a Nike girl through and through. I do love these shoes for running, but for lifting, HIIT, walking and everything in between, these are the shoes I reach for.
29. Valley of Vision book. I know, I’m not including books…but I couldn’t leave this out. This book of Puritan prayers has directed my heart in such a beautiful way and it had to be included.
30. ESV Journal Bible. I typically find myself using the Dwell App or the Bible App on my phone more often than not, but the experience I have reading the Word through my physical Bible always ends up being next-level. I love the lined extra-long margins and that I can use essentially any writing tool since the pages aren’t overly sheer.