Introducing the 2015 Bloop Holiday Gift Guide

I make my own money // So I spend it how I like // I’m just livin’ life” — the based & blessed American poets Rae Sremmurd

Bloop is a joint venture between Aminatou Sow and Jenna Wortham. Bloop is a combination of ‘black’ and ‘goop’ — basically, what it would be like if Gwyneth Paltrow’s goop were written exclusively by and for black women. Anyone can enjoy bloop, of course, but it started out as an inside joke, a casual way to reference the emails, Gchats and iMessages we’d send each other about the products, services and various things we’re obsessing over. Eventually, we decided that bloop needed to live beyond our private inboxes. Given the season, we decided to start with the official 2015 bloop holiday gift guide. It’s a list of the things we’re currently loving, wearing, eating, drinking and generally sweating. This is an experiment, to see if something that we enjoy doing, if it is something that people enjoy reading.

It might be one-off thing, or turn into something bigger — but it starts here in the smallest and most casual of ways.

Welcome to bloop.

Jenna’s Picks

Whachu know about Samantha Irby? She is the light the truth and the way. She is a national treasure. I got her collection of short essays by way of EmilyBooks and have been gifting it to all my friends ever since. I mean, just look at this sentence: “I want to watch porn by myself, because a dude just won’t let you take five minutes to masturbate without his dick thinking it’s an invitation, and then that five minutes becomes twenty-five minutes (if you’re lucky) of heat and sweat and effed-up hair and having to remake the bed and being late for work and even then, after all that grunting and shoving and groaning, you might STILL have to get your vibrator out while this motherfucker passes out on top of the shirt you’d taken out to wear to the office.” Can I get an amen?? Everyone needs this book in their life.

I’m assuming you already have THE FUTURE IS FEMALE shirt from Otherwild, so put this in your cart next: A pack of the LA shop’s delicious breu resin incense. Collected from trees in the Amazon, it is said to clear emotional pathways and stimulate conscious dreaming. It smells like something Prince would burn at his afterparty, all sex and velvet and late night, exactly what you want to smell after he crushes you at basketball and right before he serves the pancakes. The resin is also apparently rich in alpha and beta-amyrina triterpenes, which is said to decrease inflammation and help digestion.

Ever since Beyonce dropped the video for “Rocket,” I’ve been trying to find some lingerie that makes me feel exactly like that song sounds. Yawl. THIS IS IT. It’s a high-cut bodysuit that perfectly accentuates thicc thighs and makes your peach look extra juicy. Put it on your list or just buy it for your damn self. This one is fire, also, and so is this one. Everyone should basically only rock bodysuits from here on out.

Did you know you can own the Lenny Kravitz scarf? Some entrepreneurial genius recreated it and is selling it online and it’s hella expensive but worth it. So worth it.

A few weeks ago I saw the baddest bitch I know, Shani Hilton, and she was carrying this bag. It looked like definition of success. I’ve been obsessed with it ever since and really need it in my life. SOMEONE BUY ME THIS BAG.

We all have that person in our life who needs a little extra help from Jesus with moisturization, and the Monoi Oil from Whipped Goods is exactly what you should buy their dry ass. Monoi oil is a Tahitian blend of coconut oil and monoi flowers, and you can use it on both the skin and the hair. I personally prefer the sandalwood-infused version, but one time I accidentally ordered the jasmine scented one, and it was just as delicious and lovely. I got this for a (black!) friend who said he didn’t “get” lotion and it turned him into a believer.

You already know that the ‘100’ emoji is the blackest emoji out there, and this print makes me laugh every time I look at it. I have one in my house and love to give these as presents for holidays and special occasions.

I thought Hennessy was for old men and cat daddies for the longest time, but a few months ago I got a bottle of Hennessy Privilege as a gift for moderating a panel during AfroPunk. Yo. Yooo. I felt like I unlocked a secret level in a video game I didn’t know I was playing. It’s so smooth, so delicious and if you drink enough Hennessy Priv you will be mentally spirited away into this YouTube video. It is the perfect gift for all the cat daddies and Hennessy non-believers in your life.

BITCH I KNOW GUAC IS EXTRA is one of my favorite memes and this bracelet KILLS me. So good. I’m getting it for my favorite niece.

Lately, I’ve been really into ‘faded’ as an aesthetic — in sounds and overall vibe, and this stone washed Turkish blanket is a gorgeous throw for the bed or couch. In the spring and summer, it’ll be perfect for the park or the beach. Also, Arabelle mentioned the ‘faded tattoo ink’ polish by Floss Gloss which deserves a mention — it would be perfect as a stocking stuffer or a small token of appreciation for someone special in your life.

Chani Nichols is like that auntie who won’t stop telling you about yourself even though you didn’t ask her for advice on your career or love life. But she speaks the truth and will hit you with the realest shit, exactly when you need it. She offers a personalized reading for 2016 that is a STEAL at $21. Give the gift of real-talk to the friends and dumdums in your life who need it most.

Aminatou’s Picks

Bralettes are really a must have for the modern woman and until recently I was very annoyed not to find one for ladies with big boobs. Chromat to the rescue. Perfect for those steamy winter dance parties. Cop one, show off that beautiful melanin, pair em with your favorite high waisted denim and shake what the good lord gave ya. While we’re still talking about underthings, shoutout to the blessed sisters over at Nubian Skin.

You’re a fool if you’re paying airline prices for the shitty “cocktails” they serve on board. Carry on cocktail is the only way to live life. If only Obama would keep his campaign promise to make a henny version of this. TSA tried to give me problems because I was carrying 7 of these bad boys on a recent flight [do you know how far Hawaii is?] but THANK GOODNESS YA GIRL IS WOKE ENOUGH TO KNOW IT’S YOUR CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHT TO CARRY AS MANY LIQUIDS AS YOU WANT AS LONG AS THEY’RE UNDER 3.4 OUNCES. Don’t tread on me. I know my rights. PS how much do you want to bet Jenna will include henny in her list?

Sidebar: other things I don’t travel without → laptop charger, water bottle, comfortable ass socks, soothing face mist, Kiehl’s “First Class” Purifying Hand Treatment, eye mask, this bomb ass deodorant and very necessary travel kit.

My friend Marisa Meltzer is one of the most luxurious women I know and she has never led me astray in the quest for soft, delightful anything so when she said that this kimono robe situation is the truth, I knew what I had to do. She also brought these A++ sweats into my life aka “attainable luxury”

I recently konmari’d all of my books and tbh the cookbooks were the first to go. Let’s be real any cookbook not worth making 10 recipes from has no place on your bookshelf. You can find almost every recipe online and they just take up tooooo much space. I made a notable exception for goddess Edna Lewis. She basically gave us modern american cuisine and yet not a lot of people know about her. #eracism

Do you have a rich boyfriend who is sweet but dumb and doesn’t know what to get you? Make him buy you this bold ass cashmere sweater. My friend Halima who is basically the Porsha Williams of Bed-Stuy [that’s not a compliment but you know it’s true boo] got this as a birthday present from her Congolese banker tinderoni and it’s really made me rethink my bold& courageous stance on being single. IT IS NOT WORTH BEING ALONE IF AN AFRICAN KING WILL BUY YOU FENDI CASHMERE ON A WHIM.

Fewer things more black™ than using African soap. There are a lot of good options online but if you are legit, you know that the best way to get it is to 1. ask your Nigerian auntie to hook you up or 2. stroll by the Fulton mall and get it from those dudes selling it in the shady containers. This will also do tho. No frills and excellent for your skin.

Ohmygawd I spent the night at someone’s house recently and was blessed enough to sleep in this magnificent pajama set. Took everything I had not to rob him so I had to get my own. I don’t want to talk about how much it costs or the fact that visa fraud prevention services called me as soon as I hit “order” but you won’t find a better outfit for lounging around and watching Being Mary Jane.

Speaking of lying in bed all day to watch TV, if you’re not caught up on Power, I truly don’t know what to do with you. It’s an edgier [better? yikes maybe] Empire and the sex scenes are just straight fire. Emotionally invest ASAP.

Denim babouche! What a time to be alive. I grew up watching my dad and uncles wear this style of shoe to mosque or during holidays so I’m thrilled to co-opt them for my own closet.

Jazz can really be trash and get on your last nerve because it never resolves but I’m slowly coming around again. The 50th-anniversary edition of A Love Supreme is a delight and has the only live recording of the title suite.

By the time you read this white people will probably have fully ruined dabbing for us but who knows maybe we can still wear this? [update: RIP DABBING. GONE TOO SOON]

Want to absolutely make someone’s life? SEND THEM MOMOFUKU CAKE! Ships everywhere and what a treat it is. Holiday food gifts are basically the snaxx equivalent of snapchat: here now, gone in 3 bites.

Is this the blackest thing in the entire MOMA store? PROBABLY!

That’s all we got!

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Who knows? It might really turn into a regular thing.

Stay hydrated, stay black, stay YBA.

Love, Amina & Jenna ❤