Can a pair of Miu Miu shoes change your life? What about a celebrity beauty brand’s hyped-up lip treatment, or a simple, satin Prada headband?
Crediting one purchase with transforming all of 2022 might sound dramatic. But as the best products BAZAAR editors found over the past 365 days show, buying exactly the right thing at exactly the right time has its own kind of practical magic. In some cases, they over-deliver on their utility (like a Sonicare toothbrush or a Dyson vacuum), in some cases, they’re a long-awaited splurge (like a first pair of Margiela Tabis), and in all the others, wearing them turns an average day into a special occasion (like a rare vintage dress).
Read on for the best fashion, beauty, tech, and home goods our editors discovered in 2022 and can’t imagine life without now.
“My favorite thing I bought this year was a black-and-white checkered Moroccan rug from Etsy. The vendor, BahiaRugs, is based in Marrakech and they handwove the rug to fit our living room perfectly; I recently moved in with my partner and we wanted to update his current space to reflect our style. The rug is graphic and modern yet so soft and cozy—and it feels extra special knowing that it was made just for us by incredibly skilled artisans. It’ll always remind me of the beginning of building a home together.” —Ariana Marsh, senior features editor
“This was the year I fell in love with a boxy fit: wider jeans, tees that drape just over my waistline (like my fave from Darryl Brown), and general sartorial penance for my college years as an emo boy who might as well have spraypainted his clothes on. The latest edition to my wardrobe is also its crowning glory: my tan mohair cardigan from Nice as Heck, a small contemporary label that focuses on sustainability via its operations and a celebration of nature via its designs. (The cardigan’s pattern is inspired by peeling eucalyptus.) You can size up this unisex cardigan for a big, roomy fit, or keep things at a medium-slouch that’s casual but never sloppy.” —Nojan Aminosharei, special projects editor
“I consider a staple lip moisturizer to be a forever necessity, and I’ve found mine this year (believe it or not) in Rhode Beauty’s peptide lip treatment. It really is that good. It’s refreshing in the summer and moisturizing in the winter—and with or without makeup, each coat feels renewing.” —Sabrina Park, editorial and social media assistant
“I’ve always wanted a Simone Rocha dress—to me they’re like a Max Mara coat or a Chanel bag or an Hedi Slimane blazer in terms of must-have wardrobe dream grails—so I found this amazing fairytale 1920s dress to wear to the after party of my wedding. Since my wedding dress was very formal and stately, I wanted something naughty and decadent. You leave the back ties undone so you have a little feather tail, and the see through panels are super sexy. And best of all I have worn it again twice since my wedding—how often can a bride claim that?!” —Rachel Tashjian, fashion news director
“It’s a miracle I’m able to make it anywhere because I pretty much never wear the kind of shoes that makes getting anywhere easy. Almost all the shoes I own make a loud dramatic thud as I walk, and I used to think life was too short for something as easy and straightforward as flats.
But these leather Miu Miu ballet flats have the same kind of sass as my favorite shoes, thanks to their buckled straps, which look so wrong it’s right on the romantic ballet silhouette. Plus, they are an absolute dream to walk in. They’re probably the only pair of shoes I own that have never made me cry—I glide down the street when I wear them. Currently, I can’t stop styling them with black knee-high stocking socks, as I believe God (Mrs. Miuccia Prada) intended. And I get stopped and complimented constantly when I wear them; more so than I ever have while wearing any other pair of shoes. Sure, there’s no dramatic thud when I walk, but they’re clearly still a showstopper.” —Tara González, senior fashion editor
Related article: The BAZAAR Guide To This Year’s Best Holiday Party Outfits
“The iconic loafer, but with a heel? I had to. These Chanel loafers were a spontaneous purchase, however I justified it as an investment piece, since it’s a shoe I know I’ll wear for years. The color is neutral and seasonal. I am constantly on the go, so it makes for the perfect everyday shoe that you can even wear on nights out. 10/10 purchase for me!” —Alicia Banilivy, fashion and retail credits editor
“When any major moments happened to me this year, a Mara Hoffman outfit went right along with them. Whether it was celebrating my golden birthday on a homecoming trip to Puerto Rico, cheers-ing major career milestones, or even getting engaged (!!) I’ve found that splurging on a Hoffman piece for those moments always ensured I felt — and looked — my best. I specifically wore this dress in New Orleans in the days after my engagement, but adding a pair of sexy printed tights and a platform heel could make this piece a holiday party dress as well.” —Bianca Betancourt, culture editor
“This is by far one of the best purchases I’ve made this year. I’ve been eyeing a Dyson vacuum for over a year and finally took the plunge and bought one during Black Friday. After having the same $20 vacuum since I was a junior in college, it feels nice to do a little adulting and finally buy a ‘big girl’ vacuum. You know how the saying goes: once you go cordless, you’ll never go back.” —Mariah Morrison, senior social media editor
“One of my favorite purchases of this year was something to get me ready for next: a planner for 2023. Not only does it contain space for important dates and to-do lists, but it also has extra pages for my notes and doodles, which always comes in handy. As an added bonus, the cover of my brand new planner serves as a constant reminder to give myself a little grace.” —Tiffany Dodson, associate beauty commerce editor
“I bought two people this Tarot deck by a graphic designer who I know from other things on his Etsy page. The Pulp Tarot is a great gift for the friend who loves retro fashion, maybe has a tattoo, and dabbles in Tarot. It’s such a fun, well-designed set, they’ll be giving you a free reading just to show it off.” —Carl Kelsch, managing editor
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“Vintage shopping isn’t usually high on my to-do list when I travel internationally; I always leave stores empty-handed, disappointed that the things that feel like me are nowhere to be found in my size. Then I hit the work travel jackpot with two back-to-back trips to Paris and a thrift store recommendation another editor promised would change my luck.
When I found a spare hour in my itinerary to shop, I had my Mrs. Harris Goes to Paris moment—except I found my dream dress in a cramped vintage store in the 2nd arrondissement by accident, instead of gate-crashing a haute couture atelier’s show on purpose. It was Prada: black, with a bateau neckline and the most gorgeous structure through the bodice and a slightly swishy skirt. When I tried it on, it fit as well as my wedding dress post-alterations.
I so often buy ‘everyday’ items, I loved buying something I could save for special occasions and really cherish. (And, that not everyone else on TikTok has.) This Vestiaire Collective find has a similar look to my hidden gem dress.” –Halie LeSavage, fashion commerce editor
“I’ve never been the biggest fan of the cowboy boots trend, but even I have to admit that there’s something beguiling about wearing cowboy boots with a frilly minidress or baggy denim cut-offs. Enter Frye’s classic campus boots. They’ve been a treasure in my closet since I pulled the trigger on them this year, perfectly blending a sense of rugged folksiness with cosmopolitan sensibilities. And yes, they look great with my minidresses, too.” —Chelsey Sanchez, associate editor
“After two long pandemic years of cutting my own bangs, I finally saw a professional who told me in no uncertain terms to lay off the scissors. I’d been cutting too much and made a proper mess of my hair line, so now I needed to wait patiently for a bunch of wispy pieces to grow out. Enter the Prada headband. The puffy wide satin band holds everything in place, and adds an extra bit of finesse to any look. It’s carried me from the office to black tie events. Bobby pins could never.” —Alison Cohn, deputy fashion news editor
“I love my Apple Watch! I’ve been a holdout for years because it just seemed like one more piece of technology to add to my already tech-clogged life. But in the month or so that I’ve had it, I’ve been able to step away from my phone without worrying about missing things. And the way it tricks you into exercising is really working for me—my step count is way up.” —Izzy Grinspan, deputy digital editor
“After thinking about it for months, 2022 was finally the year I made the decision to buy a pair of black Margiela Tabi boots. I am a shopper, so to be honest I’ve made some pretty great purchases this year, but these Tabi boots quickly became a go-to for when I had nothing else to wear. A quirky closet workhorse is my number one getting-dressed hack for others, so I’m so happy I took my own advice this year and joined the Tabi universe.” —Nikki Ogunnaike, senior digital director
Related article: The 5 Most Comfortable Work Shoes To Wear To The Office
“A leather jacket is such an investment piece and wardrobe staple. When I saw The Row had a diamond-in-the-rough jacket at their sample sale earlier this year, I knew it had to be mine. It’s tailored yet hugs you and feels like butter. It’s luxurious and cool at the same time. I’m obsessed.” —Jaclyn Alexandra Cohen, senior fashion and accessories editor
This article originally appeared on Harper’s BAZAAR US.