— Recommendations are independently chosen by Reviewed’s editors. Purchases you make through our links may earn us a commission.
The winter holidays are winding down, and we’re finally, finally bidding 2020 adieu. I’ve got a proposal—this winter, instead of making promises about the upcoming year, let’s focus on celebrating the fact that we are moving past 2020. I’ll be spending New Year’s taking a long bath, ordering myself takeout, and brainstorming presents to give myself now that I’m done finding gifts for others.
Get expert shopping advice delivered to your phone. Sign up for text message alerts from the deal-hunting nerds at Reviewed.
Care to join me? We all deserve a treat just about now. We’ve gathered some of the best luxury and splurge buys of the year. If you’re looking for a sign that it’s time to treat yourself, let us be that sign.
1. A Leesa mattress, because good rest is the core of self-care
You can change your sleep schedule, get silky pajamas and fresh new linens, cover yourself in heavy blankets and lay your head on the greatest pillow in the world—none of it will mean anything if you're sleeping on a mattress that throws your spine out of whack. A mattress doesn't have to be bad to be bad for you—we all need different levels of support and firmness. This mattress is one of the all-round best health and beauty products of 2020, and in our opinion, it’s far and away the strongest option in the competition bed-in-a-box market. Its two topmost layers of foam are cushy and inviting, with the pocket spring base offering reliable support that’s appropriate for any sleeping position, making this our favorite mattress upgrade option of the year.
2. An incredible cooler that’s just as impressive on the outside
When we tested this wow-worthy Yeti cooler against other top brands, we decided we couldn’t give it an award for one reason—it was too much. Not only was it the priciest cooler we tested, it looked like it was. The super shiny stainless steel struck us as too fancy for a casual family barbeque. But if you’re looking for a splurge that you can show off, or for a cooler that does a really good job keeping things cold, the Yeti V series is for you. And we mean a really good job—over the course of our eight day testing, the cooler's internal temperature never once raised above 37°F—such an impressive performance we were forced to rethink our whole grading criteria. If you’re a go-big-or-go-home kind of person, or if you’re planning an extended camping trip and want a guarantee of food safety, this is a splurge worth considering.
3. An authenticated watch to keep you on track in 2021
Time was meaningless in 2020, but there's no reason to bring that energy into 2021. This beautiful stainless steel Cartier Ronde watch meets eBay's Authenticity Guarantee, which means it will be carefully inspected by authenticators to protect buyers against potential scams. All purchases made with eBay’s Authenticity Guarantee program are securely shipped with a unique authenticity ID so you know that the piece you’re receiving has been individually and professionally reviewed. The stainless steel band will help ensure this watch stands up to the test of time (pun intended), but if that’s not your style, it can easily be switched for a leather option.
4. A road bike to help you enjoy your commute
Avoiding the subway during the pandemic has driven me to start biking everywhere, and if there's a silver lining to be gleaned from 2020, that's mine. For years, I relied on a bike that I had built from spare parts with the help of volunteers from a local bike shop, and although I loved the experience, the bike itself definitely had its limits. If you're just getting into biking around a city or neighborhood, you can start seriously strong with this top-rated lightweight road bike made for speed. And if you’ve been struggling through a tough commute on a hybrid bike, you won't be disappointed with an upgrade.
5. A Dyson vacuum that will make your home an oasis
I never expected to be dreaming of high-quality vacuum cleaners, but after going through three in as many years, that’s exactly what I’m doing. Dyson is the absolute king of vacuum brands, and if you’re ready for a machine that you will never want to replace or upgrade, there’s really nothing better. At the very top of the pack is our favorite, the Dyson V11 Torque Drive. It’s got the power and performance we’ve come to expect from the brand, but with some totally unique features, like suction that adjusts automatically, and an LCD that lets you know exactly when the power will run out. It’s pricey, but if you want all the bells and whistles, you’ll never regret the splurge.
Mostly concerned about sucking up stray pet hair? You should also consider the Roomba i7+, which blew us away when it came to keeping a household with a dog free of shedded fur.
6. A weighted blanket to soothe nerves
This is not the year to skimp on comfort. Weighted blankets are amazing—warm and cozy, and heavy enough to soothe anxiety and lull you to sleep during tough times. It's not a hug, but it's the next best thing. Spending the new year alone? Cozy up with our favorite weighted blanket for some guaranteed chill time. The Gravity Blanket is enjoyably heavy without being too hot, bulky, or stifling. We loved the feeling of the velvet cover, which is also, thankfully, machine washable.
7. Gold hoop earrings for effortless style
It's time to quit playing piercing infection roulette and retire the department store jewelry that turns your ears green. Why not expand your signature style to include a pair of simple, high quality earrings you won't need to replace after they get bent out of shape in six months? These simple 18k gold mini hoops work with just about any look, from glitter to grunge, and they'll actually hold up over the years. They could even become a family keepsake you pass down to an equally fashion forward grandchild.
8. An automatic pet feeder to keep your most important housemate happy
Sick of being woken in the wee small hours of the morning by your furry friend screaming for breakfast? You can let them know that it’s out of your hands by investing in a high end automatic pet feeder. This feeder is definitely one of the pricier options on the market, but it's high cost is reflected in its quality, versatility, and reliability. In our test, we were happy to find that it was super accurate and easy to use, so you don’t have to worry if your kitty is on a strict diet. We had no trouble pairing the feeder with its connected app, and it was a breeze to key in a new meal schedule.
9. A stand mixer that will revolutionize your kitchen
I pine for a KitchenAid daily. Someday I will have the counter space and the tax rebate to justify this purchase—but if you choose to splurge on a KitchenAid this year, just know that I am intensely jealous of you. It’s the stand mixer that stands alone, absolutely wiping out the competition for the past hundred years, and our testers have found that it more than lives up to its reputation. It’s efficient, easy to use, and works with a huge variety of specialized attachments. When it comes to stand mixers, we fully support splurging every time.
10. A fitting winter coat to get you through any outdoor excursion
Unlike many competing insulated jackets, this one features a cinched waist and sleek outline to remind the world that yes, there is a human inside here, and not just a giant snowball. We fell in love with the Gabriola, a military-style park that falls to mid-thigh. The Canadian white duck down filling is designed to keep you warm all the way down to -5 degrees F, making it perfect for everyday use in a cold climate. It's certainly a splurge compared to most other popular winter coat brands, but it's actually one of the cheaper available coats from Canada Goose. Just a little note you can trot out if anyone asks you if this purchase is strictly necessary!
11. A rowing machine to start building your home gym
Home gyms don’t have to be limited to ellipticals and standing bikes—get yourself a piece of equipment you will actually use and enjoy! If you’re looking to break a serious sweat, maybe that’s a rowing machine. While a rower will definitely work your arms and upper body, with proper form it should offer a total body workout. It’s a great cardio option if you’re also looking to build some muscle, and feel fairly hardcore while you’re at it. The NordicTrack RW600 Rower is one of the most popular options of the year, and it definitely proves its value. The machine includes a large touchscreen display, and comes with a one year iFit membership that offers a personalized training plan.
12. A designer bag to suit your lifestyle
Ditch the half dozen grody canvas totes you’ve picked up over the years and get yourself a sleek leather bag that you actually want. This roomy tote from Coach is effortlessly stylish, understated but unmistakable. If you spend your subway commutes salivating over the Coach bag clutched by the person in front of you, it's time to treat yourself with this spacious and timelessly gorgeous piece. Fans especially love the classic brass detailing and the handy magnetic closure.
13. Our favorite bidet to bring luxury into every room of the house
As a nation we have talked more about toilet paper this year than we have in at least my lifetime. Scratchy paper, expensive paper, paper made from virgin forests, one-ply, sold out—it enough to make you want to flush the whole concept down the proverbial toilet (just me?). It’s high time we join our friends across the pond and start investing in a higher level of bathroom hygiene. The Brondell Swash 1400, our favorite bidet of 2020, comes with an impressive selection of additional features to make the bathroom an all-round more appealing environment, including a heated seat, a deodorizer, and a warm air dryer to further cut down on the need for TP.
14. An intoxicating fragrance with a cult following
A new fragrance is one of those indulgences that is kind of meant to be shared with the world, but is (let's be real) mostly for you. Depending on your scent of choice, it might perk you up in the morning, or even lull you to sleep at night. My personal favorites tend to be warm, spicy fragrances with a hint of musk—but there are about ten million perfumes and colognes to choose from, and exploring them is a real joy. It you want to spoil yourself with a fan favorite, consider Tom Ford’s Black Orchard, a complex and woodsy unisex scent that wears well all day. Top notes include black truffle and ylang-ylang, with an undercurrent of black plum, vanilla, patchouli, bitter orange, and bergamot (my personal favorite scent in the world). Buying fragrances you’re not familiar with can be a risk, but it’s definitely a fun one.
15. An amazing hair mask for deep conditioning
The deep conditioning treatment from Leonor Greyl is a high-end staple for serious hair repair. It's a huge hit among hair care enthusiasts, who say it does a remarkable job helping out hair that's gone brittle and weak after multiple dye jobs, or which is suffering from dullness or brassiness for any reason. The infusion of cupuacu and manketti oils result in well hydrated, reinvigorated hair, even after extensive damage. Sure, dousing your hair in coconut oil is great, but Leonor Greyl is there when you need that extra indulgent boost.
16. The best noise cancelling headphones you can buy
I don't know your setup, but here's a picture of mine: I live in a three-bedroom apartment with four people, three cats, and a next door neighbor who is teaching his son to play the violin. I love my home, but when I signed off on this setup I was not aware that I would spend many months working full time from the living room. The saving grace this year has been my noise cancelling headphones. They clamp onto my head at 9am, and they don't come off until I'm punching out. It's not all about work, either—sometimes I just need a break from my housemates and their various noises, and the quickest way to get that is tuning out. If you want the very best, you should go for the Sony WH-1000XM4—a pair of incredibly comfortable over-ear headphones with stellar sound and intelligently adaptable noise cancellation.
17. A thermal top made from 100% cozy Merino wool
‘Tis the season, at least for me, of traipsing through the snow with friends and almost freezing my extremities off. It's hard to appreciate a winter wonderland when you're most occupied with keeping your hands tucked into your armpits. Investing in a good coat, hat, and gloves is all important—but you can also add super thin layers under your clothing to add warmth without piling on the bulk. If you're getting through a truly cold winter, you can't do much better than the Merino 250 line from Smartwool. Reviewers say the layer is comfortable, breathable, and stays dry after extended wear—even if you're using it to brave a cold weather run. This top is made of 100% Merino wool, which is phenomenal when it comes to lightweight warmth, breathability, and odor control. Just watch out if you're sensitive to wool, as this form fitting piece might have you itching.
18. A shearling jacket that’ll turn heads
Get cozy-chic with this genuine Spanish shearling coat from Vince. There are plenty of cheap plush and fuzzy jackets on the market, but polyester can't compete with real shearling wool—come on, you're human, and you do get cold. This blazer-cut coat has a bit of funk to it, but it's also got a simple elegance that will carry you through pretty much any cool-weather event. With a little extra care, it can become your winter staple for many years. And yes, most importantly of all, it's got pockets.
19. A cashmere sweater for high-class comfort
Cashmere doesn't just look gorgeous—it will also keep you toasty warm all through New Year’s Eve. Cashmere might strike you as being too fancy for casual wear, but this laid-back turtleneck from Everlane proves that doesn't have to be true. I've been obsessed with Everlane’s jeans for a long time, but reviewers say their cashmere sweaters more than live up to the brand’s high standard. Best of all, Everlane practices a radically transparent business model, spelling out exactly how they price their products and monitor conditions in their factories, so you can feel good about your splurge.
20. A pair of loafers you’ll love
I’ve always loved a good loafer. They’re timeless for a reason—at their best, they’re pulled together enough for a job interview, and cute and comfortable enough for a celebratory drink afterward. Sure, some of us might not be on our regular schedules, but if you’re stuck at home, that just means you have more time to break in a new pair of shoes. These leather loafers from Nordstrom are classic in all the best ways, but detailed enough to add a little extra flair.
21. A weekend at an AirBnB, because you've seen enough of your own house
Whether you’re still going in to work or haven’t seen your coworkers for nine months, whether you live alone or have twenty housemates—odds are, after the experience that was 2020, you could use a little vacation. Now, I know our options are limited. I’m not about to suggest you book a flight or jet off to party with a dozen friends—but that does not mean you can’t get away. Take a mini vacation alone (if you’re desperate for five minutes away from family) or with a loved one in your pod and enjoy a weekend of cooking, reading, and going for walks in at least a different neighborhood. It might basically feel like a staycation, but hey, remember when staycations were fun?
Prices were accurate at the time this article was published but may change over time.
This article originally appeared on Reviewed: 21 best gifts for when you need to spoil yourself