Select Page
The Best Sex Toys for Every Body

The Best Sex Toys for Every Body

Sex tech has come a long way in the past 10 years—not only in terms of cultural acceptance and awareness, but also technology. Gone are the days of clunky, pink plastic rabbit vibrators and sex toys that feel like knockoff action figures. Today’s toys are designed by sex educators, medical professionals, and some of the world’s greatest sexperts. They feature ultra-premium, surgical-grade silicone, robust Bluetooth connectivity, programmable vibration patterns, and multiple motors all designed to help you have a good time. 

There’s never a bad time to invest in a little extra self-care. These are some of our favorite sex toys, vibrators, smart vibrators, personal wand massagers, and accessories, all of which we’ve personally tested. There’s something here for everyone, every gender, and every body. The language on these products isn’t always gender-inclusive, but we approached testing with a gender-inclusive mindset, testing these with a variety of different genitals, bodies, and partners.

Still don’t see anything you like? Be sure to check out our other bedroom-related guides on the Best Sounds for Sleep, the Best Mattresses, and the Best Sound Machines.

Updated September 2022: We added the Magic Wand Mini and the Pulse Lube Warmer, and adjusted prices. 

Special offer for Gear readers: Get a 1-year subscription to WIRED for $5 ($25 off). This includes unlimited access to and our print magazine (if you’d like). Subscriptions help fund the work we do every day.

If you buy something using links in our stories, we may earn a commission. This helps support our journalism. Learn more. Please also consider subscribing to WIRED

The Top New Features in Apple’s WatchOS 9

The Top New Features in Apple’s WatchOS 9

If you have an iPhone, the Apple Watch is far and away the best fitness tracker. The only downside perhaps (besides the battery life) is that Apple’s health software has historically been somewhat lacking. It’s not uncommon to see Apple Watch users immediately transfer their data to more useful and easily actionable software, like Strava or Nike Run Club. But that could all change with a whole host of new fitness features debuting in WatchOS 9. 

If features like measuring stride length and vertical oscillation work as intended, they could easily turn the Apple Watch into the best running watch and best watch for endurance athletes, period. That’s in addition to a whole host of brand-new features on the new Series 8, such as crash detection and a body temperature sensor that will help people who want to become pregnant track their fertility. Here, we break down all the top new features in WatchOS 9. Don’t forget to check out our Best Apple Watch and the Best Apple Watch Accessories guides for more. 

Special offer for Gear readers: Get a 1-Year Subscription to WIRED for $5 ($25 off). This includes unlimited access to and our print magazine (if you’d like). Subscriptions help fund the work we do every day.

Is Your Apple Watch Compatible?

Will your watch be able to download WatchOS 9? The following models are compatible:

  • Apple Watch Series 4
  • Apple Watch Series 5
  • Apple Watch SE (2020)
  • Apple Watch Series 6
  • Apple Watch Series 7
  • Apple Watch SE (2022)
  • Apple Watch Series 8
  • Apple Watch Ultra

You’ll also need an iPhone with support for iOS 16, which includes the iPhone 8 (2017) or later. You can check out our iOS 16 features roundup for instructions on how to download the new OS on your handset.

How to Install WatchOS 9

You can install WatchOS 9 with either your iPhone or your Apple Watch. Whichever method you choose, you’ll want to make sure your iPhone is connected to Wi-Fi and running iOS 16, and that your Apple Watch battery is at 50 percent (at least). You’ll also have to make sure your watch and iPhone are next to each other, to keep them in range.

To update your watch using your iPhone, open the Apple Watch App and tap on the My Watch tab. Then tap General > Software Update and Download. From there, you’ll see a progress wheel on your Apple Watch indicating the update has begun. If you choose to install an update directly on the Apple Watch, you’ll have to make sure the watch is connected to Wi-Fi. Then open the Settings app on your watch and tap General > Software Update > Install

It can take up to an hour to install WatchOS 9, so make sure you won’t need to access your smartwatch during that time. If you do need it, you can choose to update your Apple Watch overnight instead. When you receive a notification that the new OS is available to download, tap the Update Tonight option. Then on your iPhone, confirm that you want to update your watch overnight. Before you go to bed, make sure both your iPhone and Apple Watch are charging throughout the night.

Health and Fitness Features

watch screen showing graph of sleeping stages

Photograph: Apple

There are a number of improvements to the Apple Watch’s health and fitness apps. Here’s the lowdown. 

Better Workout Views

Apple Watch showing power and elevation workout view

Photograph: Apple

To better optimize your workouts, Apple updated its Workout app to show more stats, and you can rotate the Digital Crown to cycle through different views like Heart Rate Zones, Activity Rings, and Power and Elevation. You’ll also have the option to build Custom Workouts complete with work and rest intervals, along with alerts for heart rate, pace, power, and cadence while working out.

Compass App 

Apple Watch showing Compass app

Photograph: Apple

The redesigned Compass app now has a hybrid view that includes both the simple analog compass that shows direction and bearing, plus a new digital one. Turning the crown shows relevant navigational information, such as latitude, longitude, elevation, and incline. It also includes new orienteering features, like Waypoints and Backtrack. Tap the Waypoint icon to place a marker on a point of interest. Backtrack uses GPS data to show the user where they’ve been if they become disoriented and need to turn around. 

In-Depth Running Metrics

Anyone who uses an Apple Watch while running will be happy to know that you can now track new metrics like Ground Contact Time, Stride Length, and Vertical Oscillation—all of which can help improve your form. You can add them to your Workout Views, or view them in the Fitness app summary as well as the Health app (the Fitness app is finally available for iPhones as of iOS 16). You’ll also be able to see trends and patterns over time.

Fitness+ Features

Apple Watch and iPhone showing trainer callouts feature

Photograph: Apple

If you’ve been streaming your Fitness+ workouts to a second screen (like your TV) using AirPlay instead of Apple TV, you’ll finally be able to see your heart rate, calories, and Burn Bar in real-time on the display (if it’s compatible). Speaking of metrics, there’s also a new “trainer callouts” feature incorporated into your stats—with phrases like “Hard” and “All Out!”—to help you push your intensity levels while exercising. 

Sleep Stages

Apple Watch showing sleep stages feature

Photograph: Apple

Sleep tracking now shows different sleep stages. Leveraging the heart rate sensor and accelerometer, your smartwatch will identify when you’re in REM, Core, and Deep sleep. You can check this data each morning using the Sleep app on the watch. A more detailed breakdown that includes things like time asleep, heart rate and respiratory rate, and sleep comparison charts will sync to the Health app.

Log Your Medications

Apple Watch showing medication tracking feature

Photograph: Apple

In iOS 16, the Health app now features a new Medications tab. You can use it to log medications, create schedules, and set reminders. Those reminders will then appear on your Apple Watch (and your iPhone), with the ability to log the moment you take them by tapping the notification on your watch.

Track Your AFib History

Apple Watch showing AFiB history

Photograph: Apple

If you’ve been diagnosed with atrial fibrillation, you can now enable the AFib History feature for a weekly update on deeper insights pertaining to your condition. You can see an estimate of how often your heart rhythm shows signs of AFib and how other factors such as exercise, sleep, and alcohol impact your AFib. You can access a detailed history via the Health app too—with the option to download a PDF to give to your primary care physician. According to Apple, the feature has “received a number of local clearances and approvals from health authorities around the world, and will be available in more than 100 countries and territories, including the US, Canada, Europe, Hong Kong, Mexico, South Africa, the UK, and more.” It will be available in Australia later this fall.

Temperature Sensing (Series 8 and Ultra Only)

Apple Watch and iPhone showing temperature sensor

Photograph: Apple

With a two-sided temperature sensor—one on the back of the smartwatch close to your skin and one under the display—the Apple Watch Series 8 packs a new feature that can help detect changes in your body depending on your temperature. While asleep, it can measure your wrist temperature to detect any differences to your baseline temperature that might be caused by something such as illness or exhaustion. If you track your period using the Health app, you’ll receive “retrospective ovulation estimates” to help with family planning and improve period predictions. 

Our Favorite Gear for Everyday Sun Protection

Our Favorite Gear for Everyday Sun Protection

We’re finally at the end of summer, after enduring another season of unprecedented droughts and heat waves—and it’s not quite over. We may face weather like this well into the fall, which means you can expect to see a bit more sun than you’re used to during back-to-school season. You should pay closer attention to the UV index, even after summer officially ends. 

Venturing out into the sun, your most vulnerable parts are going to be your extremities, your face, and your eyes. And if you’re going swimming, that includes anywhere that’s exposed by your swimwear. That’s what we’re focusing on: keeping you covered but cool, protected but not smothered. These are our favorite picks to do just that. 

Updated September 2022: We’ve added the Coolibar Sun Blanket, Parasol, Solbari Zip-Up Hoodie, and Sensitive Skin Hand Wraps. We’ve also removed a few items that are no longer available and updated prices throughout. 

Special offer for Gear readers: Get a 1-year subscription to WIRED for $5 ($25 off). This includes unlimited access to and our print magazine (if you’d like). Subscriptions help fund the work we do every day.

If you buy something using links in our stories, we may earn a commission. This helps support our journalism. Learn more. Please also consider subscribing to WIRED

I Never Want to Take Off the Garmin Instinct 2S Solar

I Never Want to Take Off the Garmin Instinct 2S Solar

When I first tested a solar-powered Garmin several years ago, the solar function extended the battery life by a few days. Now, every solar-powered Garmin I’ve tested has lasted more than two weeks. As I was about to leave on a two-week family beach trip for a long overdue vacation, I naturally donned Garmin’s new Instinct 2S Solar.

This latest solar-powered version of Garmin’s popular backcountry Instinct series is smaller and has a sharper display than previous ones. More important, I didn’t have to charge it for 21 days. That was three weeks of multiple GPS-tracked activities per day, including running, swimming, hiking, snorkeling, paddle boarding, and boogie boarding. If you value accurate backcountry tracking and not having to charge a battery, this is the best adventure watch on the market.

Fun in the Sun

Closeup of Garmin Instinct 2S Solar on person's wrist

Photograph: Garmin

The Apple Watch has consistently dominated the smartwatch and fitness tracker market for several years. But there’s one area where it simply cannot compete: battery life. If you’re busy enough to want a smartwatch, you’re busy enough to find it annoying that you have to charge it every day (sometimes more than once).

The Instinct 2S Solar uses a Power Glass face to convert the sun’s energy (as measured in lux) to battery power. If you’re the kind of nerd who likes to check your solar intensity and how much sunlight your watch is exposed to per day, you can scroll down the watch face to find this information from the previous six hours, along with other useful at-a-glance stats like notifications and step count.

It’s kind of fun to see your solar intensity go up and down as you bike, run, or sit in the shade. But all I really needed to know was that with a lot of direct sunlight, the Instinct 2S Solar got quite a bit of power. In my months of testing, I got up to three weeks on a single charge. That’s less than Garmin’s claim of 50 days, but way more than almost every other fitness tracker. I never had to put it in power-save mode, which would’ve extended the battery life by lowering the brightness on the watch face and disconnecting the watch from the paired phone. Three weeks is plenty of time.

It’s especially astonishing because the Instinct 2S Solar is much smaller than previous Garmin Instinct watches I’ve tested. The case is 40 mm, almost 5 mm smaller than the frankly enormous original Instinct; it’s about the same size as my Apple Watch Series 7. It still has a monochrome memory-in-pixel display, but it’s noticeably sharper to me than its predecessor. Even with a 1.2-inch screen, I can read my notifications clearly.

Beat the Heat

Garmin Instinct 2S Solar

Photograph: Garmin

Since it debuted in 2018, the Instinct has been one of Garmin’s top sellers. It now comes in solar- and non-solar-powered versions; different specific editions, including a tactical version with, er, “stealth mode”; and some of the craziest colors in the sports watch market. Different colors are available for different editions, so Garmin now has a “design your own” tool on its website to make sure you get the Instinct you want.

Breathe Easy—We Found the Best Air Purifiers

Breathe Easy—We Found the Best Air Purifiers

Welcome to the future, where clean air is a luxury. From pandemics to wildfires, air purifiers have become the gotta-have-it home appliance. Buildings let in a lot of particulate matter, volatile organic compounds, and vaporous chemicals. Indoor plastics, furniture, paint, and flooring off-gas noxious fumes too. There’s also evidence that air filters can help clean Covid-causing virus particles from the air. 

Since your home might be your workplace, playground, meditation studio, dine-in restaurant, neighborhood bar, refuge, and movie theater, you want to ensure that the air you’re breathing for most of the day is clean. These are our top air purifiers. We ran them in a New York City apartment, a Long Island apartment, a Dallas-area apartment, and a Portland, Oregon home. We tested them during wildfire season and in living rooms, kitchens, and bedrooms. All of these purifiers provided significant anecdotal benefits, from stopping persistent coughs and allergy symptoms, to helping us wake up with clearer sinuses and less raspy throats.

Not sure if you need an air purifier or something else? We have a guide to all the different devices that can help you improve your indoor air quality. For more home tips, take a peek at our other guides, including the Best Robot Vacuums and the Best Mesh Wi-Fi Routers. 

Updated May 2022: We’ve added the Bissell Air320 Max and Aura Air, and removed the Dyson Pure Humidify+Cool, as it’s been discontinued. 

Special offer for Gear readers: Get a 1-year Subscription to WIRED for $5 ($25 off). This includes unlimited access to and our print magazine (if you’d like). Subscriptions help fund the work we do every day.

If you buy something using links in our stories, we may earn a commission. This helps support our journalism. Learn more. Please also consider subscribing to WIRED