New year, new you. Or let’s be real, new year, aspiring-to-be-better-but-let’s-be-real you. While the wellness industrial complex continues to make a lot of noise about curing all your ills for one low, low price, we’ve cut through the noise to come up with a few top line trends and products that are 2022’s most effective and/or interesting. A better night’s sleep, booster beverages, gut health support, sexual wellness gizmos, meditation aids, period wellness products, outdoor exercise equipment and everything with weed in it. Our list seeks to educate and maybe inspire you…so bring it on, 2022.
Magnesium Reset Spray
Beam White Chocolate Peppermint Dream Powder
Mindwell Mood & Sleep Lab
From “covidsomnia” to poor eating choices, sleep continues to be a major concern for the wellness-conscious. This year, behavioral relaxation hacks (there’s an app for that) and alternative medicine will continue to find a place next to the pills on the sleepy person’s nightstand.
1. Mindwell Mood & Sleep Lab
This app includes various relaxation recordings, but it’s the ASMR (autonomous sensory meridian response) programming we’re most intrigued by. ASMR, the practice of performing sounds designed to induce a tingly euphoric feeling in the listener, has been cited by the National Sleep Foundation as a non-chemical method of inducing sleep.
2. Magnesium Reset Spray
Besides relaxation-inducing magnesium, this lightweight blend has anti-inflammatory arnica, sleep-inducing valerian and botanical oils. (A few pumps rubbed on our feet before lights out, and we conk out really fast.)
3. Beam White Chocolate Peppermint Dream Powder
Gluten-free, non-GMO, with no sugar added, this powdered bedtime drink is made with warm milk or hot water, and thanks to ingredients including nano hemp, l-theanine and melatonin, you’ll settle in for a long winter’s nap.
Alcohol-free cocktails and adaptogen-infused soft drinks are all marketed to supplant previous generations’ happy hours (or social lubricants at parties). Ranging from energy drinks with fruit juice to lightly flavored vitamin-infused waters, there’s a whole new world of drinks to explore, hangover-free.
4. Free Rain Exploration Pack
This sparkling water has adaptogens (non-toxic plants used to enhance brain and muscle functioning) and has a splash of fruit juice for flavor. The sample set includes three formulas: a tart cherry flavor with ginseng for energy, blood orange with ashwagandha for focus and a blackberry with passionflower for calm. And there’s a new recipe, available separately: pink grapefruit with superfood maca, meant to nourish libido, enhance sexual energy and support sexual wellness.
5. Riff Energy+ Immunity Sparkling Drink
When does a caffeinated beverage not leave you listless when the uplift effects have worn off? When it’s an all-natural energy drink such as this one that comes in guava, berry and pomegranate and don’t have lots of added sugar but do have vitamin C.
6. Recess Variety Sampler
In six flavors including pomegranate hibiscus and black cherry, these CBD- and adaptogen-infused flavored waters promise to brighten your mood and calm the body. And the taste is refreshing alone, or a great mixer with carbonated beverages for a little sparkle.
In the past few years, we’ve all become conscious that we don’t just have a stomach that might be upset or hungry, but that our digestive system contains a microbiome that is especially important to our health and wellness. An industry has grown up around supplements that address everything including bloat, constipation and mood disorders.
7. Hum Gut Instinct
Tired of being constipated or just feeling bloated? Try this once-a-day-capsule that has 10 strains of more than 25 billion organisms. Fans say it’s they’re preferred one-and-done method of staying regular.
8. Athletic Greens
Even if you’re the kind of person who wrinkles their nose at a powdered supplement, this formula should impress you. One scoop of this green-tasting (and green-colored) blend of 75 minerals and nutrients mixed with icy water actually, in our experience, steadies your energy and helps reduce bloat, thanks to natural enzymes.
9. Viome Gut Intelligence Test
Basically, you’re paying to send your poop somewhere, for a higher good. This home test asks you to collect a small sample of stool which you then send back in a pre-addressed pack. In two to three weeks, you get a full report detailing the active microorganisms in your gut, as well as a recommendation for foods to avoid in order to balance all that activity. And for an extra fee, you can order customized supplements
Sex toys aren’t just for outliers anymore now that sales are as robust as the motors on the myriad shapes, sizes and colors of devices on the market. Add to that the self-care industrial complex’s attention to intimate grooming, Kegel fitness and taking care of yourself just got a whole new meaning.
10. Muff Masque
Ingrown hairs, redness, irritation…they’re all history when you unwrap this soothing sheet mask infused with botanicals like Damascene rose, aloe and chamomile extract, place it on your vulva and lie back for 15 minutes.
11. Elvie Trainer
This pelvic floor trainer syncs with your phone and prompts you to clench (two, three, four) and release (two, three, four…) while watching an animated bouncing ball. It’s the five-minute Kegel workout that tracks your progress, even before you notice you’re not peeing down your leg anymore when you sneeze.
12. We-Vibe Verge App Controlled Rechargeable Vibrating Cock Ring
We’re calling it—multi-modal couples’ toys are going to grow in popularity, and this c-ring is a perfect example. The ten-speed device can be worn in multiple positions, to stimulate the perineum, penis, testicles and even, when used as a handheld device, the vulva and clitoris.
It’s official: A 2022 Journal of the American Medical Association study confirms what we intuited all along: Chronic psychological stress is as harmful to our cardiac health as the usual suspects (diabetes, smoking, high cholesterol, etc.). So now more than ever, calming wellness practices are imperative for not only a better mood but also a long-term hedge against more serious health risks.
13. West Elm Mediation Cushion
You’ll be that much more likely to actually sit still if you invest in an attractive meditation cushion you won’t mind leaving out to remind you to quiet your mind.
14. Alo Moves
We love the popular workout clothes outfitter’s app for its focus on mind-body connection, so there are mediation and yoga classes as well as HIIT and Pilates sessions. (And during January, memberships are half-off, to encourage that post-holiday healthy new leaf we’re all mulling over…and if you take any 10 classes, you’ll be entered to win a $10,000 wellness getaway.)
While period equity continues to be a real public health concern and a British Journal of Medicine study only recently quantified the staggering number of lost work hours due to debilitating menstrual cramps (nearly nine days a year per woman), there are some bright spots on the horizon. We’re thinking that new eco-conscious underwear and alternative pain relief are a great start.
15. Thinx Super Hiphugger
16. Agni Better Periods Box
A better diet can help with the physical discomfort of your period, according to this company which packages food to support women’s health. Cinnamon maca seasoning, sesame nori seasoning and also—chef’s kiss—organic double chocolate chip cookies are in this box.
17. Livia Anti-Cramps Device
This palm-sized device clips onto your waistband and has short wires which attach to electrodes you fasten on your lower abdomen, as in an EKG. You switch it on and zap—small electrical impulses block the nerve pathways that make cramps so unbearable. (Users rave about its non-pharmacological pain relief.)
After a year of dutiful indoor exercising (we see you, Peloton), everyone is happy to get outdoors—a 2021 survey from the Outdoor Foundation revealed a 19 percent annual uptick in hiking (a growth second only to the 21 percent surge in outdoor running). With continued indoor coronavirus transmission concerns, soggy weather and muddy trails are no deterrent for continued natural highs.
18. Supergoop Play Everyday Lotion SPF 50 with Sunflower Extract
A broad-spectrum face-and-body sun block that’s water- and sweat-resistant for up to 80 minutes? That’s your best friend, along with a baseball cap, for saving your face and decolletage from getting overexposed.
19. Montem Ultra Strong Trekking Poles
When you’re going on a hike, a set of aluminum trekking poles are the best friend you didn’t know you need. They steady your balance (so you’re safer from falling), they take some pressure off your knees on downhill paths and they give your upper body a workout instead of just leaving you to slump and dangle your arms. These are lightweight and easily adjustable.
20. Outdoor Voices Zip-Off Pant
These nylon-and-elastane pants zip off to make hiking shorts that have a carabiner loop where you can hang the pants legs. So you never need to be too chilly or too warm on an all-day hike again.
Weed in Everything
CBD gummies. Bath bombs. Skin care. The cannabis takeover of the wellness space continues apace as small batch crafters innovate new ways to utilize the so-called entourage effect in which cannabis’s active botanicals combine with elements of supplements and topicals to create products that are super-powered.
21. Be Calm Patch
Each of the four patches in a pouch delivers 15 mg of CBD, which isn’t enough to put you to sleep, but it’s really going to take the edge off that lunch with your mother-in-law or stormy transatlantic flight.
22. Prima The Afterglow Vegan Collagen Cream 500mg CBD
Perhaps it’s the turmeric, ashwagandha, butterfly ginger, and gooseberry extracts that make this lightly botanical-scented facial cream leave your face feeling dewy and as plump as a down pillow. Or maybe it’s the squalene and hyaluronic acid. Possibly, it’s the high concentration of whole-plant hemp extract. Whatever the source, this stuff is the facial moisturizer to get you through winter.
23. TheraOne Revive Body Balm Stick
An ideal post-workout recovery aid, this roll-on muscle rub smells only faintly of weedy terpenes, thanks to the notes of menthol and turmeric blended in there. But rest assured, it’s concentrated with 835 mg of CBD per 1.67 ounces. Added bonus: The shea butter base lets it sink right into the skin without getting all over your clothes.
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