Cool Things to Buy: GQ Staffers on Their Favorite Purchases of the Year

35 total views
19 products—and one overstuffed sandwich—that never failed to spark joy in 2022. 

Cool Things to Buy GQ Staffers on Their Favorite Purchases of the Year

All products featured on GQ are independently selected by our editors. However, when you buy something through our retail links, we may earn an affiliate commission.

Here at GQ Recommends, we spend countless hours toiling in the e-comm trenches to curate cool things to buy so you can shop like one of us, whether you’re looking for a new suit or a fresh three-pack of boxer briefs. Our unrivaled window shopping brings you everything from the best new menswear to the hottest menswear deals. But do those selects always align with our own personal order histories? They do not. So we thought we’d give you a tantalizing peek into our very own actual non-imaginary shopping carts. This time around, we’re waxing poetic on our favorite purchases of the entire year, the 19 products—and one overstuffed Italian sandwich—GQ staffers enjoyed most in 2022. 

A Slim, Svelte, Puffer

Arc’teryx Cerium Down Hoodie

I avoided “lightweight puffers” for years. Why? Because they’re the scourge of the easy-livin’ Bay Area newcomer techie lifestyle. Well, I finally got off my high horse, and damn if I’m not glad I did. Slimmer silhouette, warm as hell, weighs basically nothing (a major bonus for your body but also any bulging winter coatrack situation). And sure, layers are good (they’re how I got by for all those years without a lightweight puffer) but you can literally throw this on over a single T-shirt and feel plenty toasty when it’s a mere 30 degrees out. Just a fantastic and fantastically warm jacket. —Martin Mulkeen, Global Commerce Director

Rage Socks

Rick Owens Drkshdw Black “Please Kill Me” Socks

One of my favorite things about clothes is when a designer creates details that are only meant to be appreciated by the buyer. It can be a well-done tag, intricate stitching on the inside of the garment, or in the case of my Rick Owens socks, a message hidden under my pant leg. Expensive socks were my final frontier of fashion. Even as an impractical person, luxury seems like an absurd concept for what is essentially a fabric foot condom. But as someone for whom self-loathing has been an integral part of my personal brand since my early teens, “please kill me” is a slogan impossible to resist. Whether I’m with family, friends, or on a date, I can discreetly wear my chasmic angst wrapped snugly over my calves. Thank you, Rick. For an ungodly mark-up, I feel seen. —Rob Vargas, Global Executive Design Director

High-Altitude Zen in a Bottle

Saje Wellness Peppermint Halo


Saje Wellness

Finding relaxation on an airplane is hard to do. There are not enough glasses of wine served at 30,000 feet that could do what peppermint halo does. You apply the oil blend to your forehead, jaw, and the back of your neck (warning: a little goes along way) and within a few seconds you start to become calmer. It started as a trusty air travel companion to our many GQ shoots (I’ve given them away to fellow anxious passengers) and now is in every room of our apartment. —Dana Mathews, Global Entertainment Director

A Scintillating Body Wash

OffCourt Fig Leaves + White Musk body wash

Assuming that you’re keeping up with your personal hygiene (we really don’t have to sell you on that anymore, do we?), there’s probably nothing you use more throughout the year than the soap in your shower. And there’s plenty of great options out there these days, from Harry’s to Aesop. But OffCourt—makers of some of our favorite body sprays—really hit it out of the park when they introduced their three signature scents in body wash form this year. In particular, the wholly singular Fig Leaves + White Musk option, which will leave you feeling like you just stepped out of the world’s sexiest rainforest every time you lather up. —Mick Rouse, Research Director

Hybrid Kicks

Nike Air Rift “Breathe” shoes

Nike’s Air Rift shoes are a little bit sneaker, a little bit ballet flat, and I’ve worn them for the better part of 2022. I bought them because I wanted a hybrid shoe that would look cool with pants or a dress (for that sporty feel) but would actually be comfortable enough to walk around New York City. Honestly one of my best purchases—I hope Nike re-releases some of the older colorways because I’ve got my browser up and my card ready. —Michella Oré, Style Commerce Writer

A Meatier Wallet

Kapital Bone Wallet



After years of carrying a slim wallet, I wanted to go full Costanza and get something big and bulky that could actually hold stuff again. So I did the normal shoparound and had 30 browser tabs open when this Kapital wallet (but in black) suddenly appeared—and newly in stock. Bought it immediately without a second thought. Other tabs immediately X’d out. —Chris Gayomali, Articles Editor

An Elusive Shade of Blue

Yves Klein Paint Set

For years I have been searching for the perfect Yves Klein Blue paint. Not navy, not cobalt, not royal; it had to be International Klein Blue. My most recent attempt to find something similar resulted in a streaky, near-black wall. Finally, this year I recently discovered the French paint company Ressource, who developed an exclusive IKB paint with the support of Yves Klein Archives. Now, I am obsessed. The paint goes on so smooth and vibrant, you only need two coats. So far I have painted a ceiling and a spiral staircase. Next, I will paint my IKEA Ivar chairs. Ressource ships internationally by the liter (there is also a brick-and-mortar store in NYC). The website often says sold out, but just keep checking back or call them, sometimes they are a little loose about updating their site. Or you can email the American showroom contact. Her name is Blue. —Roxanne Behr, Global Creative Director

An Oddly Specific, On-the-Nose Odor

Comme Des Garçons Odeur 53

Calling your fragrance an ‘odor’ is half punk, half gimmick. Even with those odds, I was intrigued by the idea that a fragrance could actually grasp the vaporous words that my nose couldn’t quite interpret. “Flaming rock,” “pure air of the high mountains,” “flash of metal”—it sounds like a fragrance created by AI, not the work of legendary avant-garde label Comme Des Garçons. Indeed, the fragrance odor is made specifically using synthetic compounds to give the impression of something natural. Algorithm or not, the fragrance is sublime. It’s light, airy, and warm. It’s not overpowering and it is seasonless. —Gerald Ortiz, Style Commerce Writer

A Severely Underrated, Overachieving Shell Jacket

REI Co-op XeroDry GTX Jacket

I love nerdy shit so much. Anyone who knows me knows full well that I love to geek out about anything and everything, from lifting gear, to PC builds; if there’s a niche for me to find and get waaaaay too into, I will do exactly that. After putting in close to 300 miles on trails last year in an old, beat up, ripstop-made mil-surplus jacket, I finally decided to upgrade into something more tech-y and modern as an outer layer for hiking. This jacket from REI punches above its weight and sits shoulder to shoulder with other famous outdoor brands like your Arc’teryxs and Klattermusens. It maintains all the quality you would expect from a modern high-end hard shell jacket, but comes in at half the price (even less if you’re a co-op member). I literally cannot wait for spring so I can put this bad boy to test in the rainy season. —Gabe Conte, Web Producer

The Perfect Sandwich

“BBT” Sandwich at Brancaccio’s Food Shop


Brancaccio’s Food Shop

My favorite restaurant in New York—maybe the world—is Brancaccio’s Food Shop in Windsor Terrace, Brooklyn. It’s difficult to get to, closed two days a week, often sold out of the thing you want, and the owner Joe can be a little cantankerous sometimes (unless you, like me, walk in one day wearing a bootleg Rob Reiner tee you made yourself, and he starts treating you with a newfound respect). But my god, the sandwiches. They are glorious, my friends. They are the Platonic ideal of an Italian sandwich: the bread is fresh and plush; the fillings are balanced and bursting with flavor. You can’t go wrong with anything on their menu, but I’m especially a fan of the BBT, which comes loaded with smoked bacon, broccoli rabe, tomato, and some housemade lemon mayonnaise. It is, without question, the best $12 I spent in 2022—and it’ll likely be the best $12 I spend in 2023, too. —Yang-Yi Goh, Style Editor

Boots You Might Not Need, But Definitely Deserve

Our Legacy Camion boots


Our Legacy

I absolutely, 100% did not need a new pair of black boots, but Black Friday put me in a spendy mood, and these Camion boots just happened to get in the way of my shopping frenzy. They’re a much sleeker option than my Blundstones, and that thick, chunky heel gives me a little extra oomph in my step (and my height). I’m trying to get the cost per wear down, so if you see me on these streets, I will be wearing these. —Tyler Chin, Associate Commerce Editor

An (Ol)Factory Reset

Helias Energy Home mist

Helias Sleep Home mist

I am not an “essential oils person,” and I, too, would roll my eyes at anyone sounding like a hippie auntie on Facebook who just joined a multi-level marketing scheme. But I am an insomniac, who has terrible trouble both falling asleep soundly and waking up fully, and one of the only natural things I’ve ever found that helped was using scent triggers to trick my body into chilling out or revving up. This year, I discovered that I could spritz a bit of this sleep mist (with lavender and chamomile) at night over my bed, and this energy mist in the shower every morning (black pepper, vetiver, mint—it’s better than caffeine!), and help my brain set a circadian rhythm…without drugs or gizmos. —Joel Pavelski, Global Director of Content Strategy

A Federer-Approved Racket

Wilson Pro Staff RF97 v13 Tennis Racket

Earlier this year, I had a very intense fascination with Roger Federer matches in the early aughts. Specifically, him during the 2007 U.S. Open where he was nicknamed “Darth Federer.” It got me back into playing tennis and, as someone who naturally gravitates to all-black anything, I stumbled upon Wilson’s Fed-approved racket and had to splurge. It feels just as sleek as it looks—seriously. Although I can’t pull a SABR (yet!), I at least feel like Federer in 2007. Long live, RF! —Anthony O’Baner Jr., Assistant to the Global Editorial Director

A Fresh, Aquatic Fragrance

John Varvatos XX Artisan Teal cologne

Smell good, Feel good. Feel good, Play good. Play good, and you can get paid enough in the future to buy this cologne again. Or something like that… —Josh Jun, Executive Director of Programming and Development

Pants to Replace Them All

Outdoor Voices RecTek pant


Outdoor Voices

Finding the right pair of pants is hard enough, especially when you need a pair that can handle the varied rigors of dog-walking, errand-running, and hiking (maybe all in the same day). And especially as someone on the shorter side, it’s a real challenge. Then I found the Outdoor Voices RecTrek pants. They’re cropped, lightweight, and super versatile. I found myself choosing them over jeans and sweatpants almost every day. They’re great in any type of weather, from casual outdoor dinners in the summer to walking my dog in the cold and rainy season. Whenever there’s been a sale, I pick up another pair. I just bought them in a third color. —Emily Zoda, Senior Commerce Producer

A Gateway to Skin Care Nirvana

Sofie Pavitt deep clean facial


Sofia Pavitt

Portals to a higher realm take many forms. This year, the doorway that helped me find god was located on the third floor of a nondescript Chinatown walkup, home to Sofie Pavitt and her roster of unflappable skin care whizzes. I take a pretty laissez-faire approach to my own routine; I’d rather let the experts handle it so I can forget about it the rest of the time. Which is what makes Sofie’s no-fuss approach to the whole experience such a blessing, especially if you’re like me, and tend to think your face is one unpredictable calamity away from a mortifying, camera-off type breakout—and any product you slather on top of it is bound to hasten the process. At last count, I’ve sent three friends and two members of my extended family their way (mea culpa, Sofie) with unanimously glowing results. Telling you to follow in my hapless pals’ footsteps isn’t advice I dispense casually, but in this case, you’re in marginally better company: I booked my first appointment of 2023 a couple of months ago. See you in church. —Avidan Grossman, Style Commerce Editor

Share this Post

About Us

Celebrating our best lives at fifty and beyond! 50ismorefun brings you motivational news and stories centered around life, fitness, fashion, money, travel and health for active folks enjoying the second half of lives.