What’s On Your Nightstand?

Wow, look at us! Somehow we all made it through this historical week and at Autostraddle, we’re here disassociating from it all with another fun topic. This week we’re getting intimate and talking about the items that live on and/or in our nightstands. Turns out you can learn a lot about a person based on what we hold near and dear to our sleeping spaces!

is what’s on mine
i have a lot of empty water cups on my nightstand because i’m a monster, apparently
Laneia: a fuckin hydrated monster
Shelli Nicole: Right now I’ve got a book and a space heater! And a charger of course – nothing exciting because I just moved in but once I’m settled probably cups and candy wrappers will be added to the list
Meg: sleep gear: a silk eye mask, lavender body lotion, calming pillow mist, and a lip sleep mask. and some books!
Abeni: i have so much shit on mine bc i just moved but also there are always tons of cups
Jehan: currently on my nightstand: my retainer, anniversary and bday cards from my partner, three books I’ve been “meaning to read” for about 2 years, and always a minimum of three water glasses
Christina Tucker: Currently on the floor next to my bed because I don’t have a nightstand: three books I’m pretty sure I have read, a vibrator that does not hold a charge and is cruel to look at, one billion zzzquill wrappers because I can’t sleep anymore, and when I am actually sleeping, my water bottle and glasses.
Dani Janae: Oooo well:
Drawer 1: my poetry notebook, gratitude journal, pens, meds, at least one book of poetry
Drawer 2: is my sex drawer so vibrators, flogger, leather wear, other toys
Drawer 3: my smell goods drawer with candles, incense, and a lighter
Malic White: On my nightstand:
-one absurdly large glass jug of water
-a very classy ceramic pump bottle where I keep my lube
-ugh ok one of those Himalayan salt lamps because I like a gentle glow
Himani: On my nightstand: Nothing! because my cats knock over and/or vomit on and/or try to eat everything…
Natalie: On my nightstand: 3 books, a kindle (because, I guess three books is insufficient reading), a box of kleenex, my echo dot/alarm clock
Valerie: while the top of my nightstand is mostly empty water cups, currently a bottle of dayquil and nyquil, and inexplicably a salt shaker, it also has four drawers full of junk loosely organized by type. the top drawer is the one i use the most, and it’s where i keep my most-used things, like my deodorant, hairbrush, vibrator, chap stick, nail file, hair ties, etc.
Kayla Kumari: on my nightstand: decorative seashells, books, seltzer, an enamel pin that says St. Augustine on it, and a pearl I found in an oyster in New Orleans lol
Reneice: On my nightstand:
on top there’s a wooden oil diffuser, 32 oz mason jar, two books, a journal, lavender & orange body oil, and a teal lamp.
The top drawer has three lip balms, calming pillow spray, a small bottle of Advil, pens (of the ink and vape varieties), my favorite love letters, and tiger balm.
Drawer 2 has a tarot deck, a notebook for dreams and another for ideas, and my favorite vibrator and an external battery.
Drawer 3 has a few more vibes, a face down frame with a picture I cherish but don’t like looking at, and chargers of all kinds.

So please tell us, what treasures does your nightstand hold, and are you as concerned with hydration in the bedroom as we seem to be?

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Reneice Charles

Reneice Charles is a just another queer, liberal, woman of color using the Internet to escape from reality and failing miserably. She received her MSW from New York University and is an Entrepreneur and Vocalist living in Los Angeles. She spends her spare time wishing she didn't have to use her spare time convincing people that everyone deserves the same basic human rights.

Reneice has written 104 articles for us.


  1. My ex has like three of my nice glasses and a lamp on hers. Mine has two lamps, a fan, three kinds of lube, my dilator set (in a lovely lavender roll case), and my Form 2. In the drawer underneath there’s at least two strap-ons, a hatchet, restraints, various knives, more lube, a toy box with batteries and condoms, micro vibes, a machete, my Heart of Glass, two cutlasses, a Feeldo knock-off, and a second dilator set. Huh. I may have a hoarding problem related to my specific interests.

  2. My friends always joke that you can 100% tell whose night stand is whose because my girlfriend has: a nice lamp, a water bottle, and a cell phone charger. I have: a pink salt lamp, a tray of varied gemstones/rocks, a joy candle, Lush lavender lotion, and a cactus tray I put the rings I wear daily in before sleep.

  3. “a vibrator that does not hold a charge and is cruel to look at”

    “Nothing! because my cats knock over and/or vomit on and/or try to eat everything…”
    Relatable. My dog stole my nightguard retainer recently. D:

    I need a bigger nightstand! Currently what I am using is the top of my air purifier. It has a 32 oz mason jar of water, earplugs, multiple bottles of meds, shea butter, a reading lamp, a Kindle, and a roll of toilet paper.

  4. On the nightstand on the side of the bed that I sleep on is a lamp, an organizer station with multiple USB ports for my devices, and always a 1/2 gallon bottle of water. There’s only one drawer and in it is drawer organizer (I hate clutter) that has pens, post-its, a small heating pad, muscle stimulator, lotion, charger cables, and several spare hair bonnets.

    The other nightstand has a lamp and 2 books on it. Inside the drawer is another organizer (surprise) that has batteries (for my remotes; no vibrators here), spare light bulbs, and a mini sewing kit.

  5. In my night stands, I have socks and underwear because I don’t have enough bedroom storage. On top, one side has a lamp that I made with a copper blast proof light fixture and purple heart wood and on the other side I have an Ikea lamp, a clay bowl, Rub A535, a phone charger, watch charger, 2 books, a glass, 2 water bottles, and an Echo.

  6. My glasses, my phone, a bottle of talcum powder, a jewelry box, a make up mirror, three figurines of hippos a friend gave me years ago, a figurine of an owl, a lamp, and some nailclippers.

    Under the table is the cat basket.

  7. I have a malm bed which means the entirety of the back of my bed is a flat, shelf like surface, on which reside: several books, currently the Gilgamesh saga, the Odyssee, a Rilke poetry anthology and the Oliver Sacks autobiography (I have this plan for reading before bedtime) a reading lamp and radio alarm clock, several medical journals, a stash of pens and odds and ends, a few empty notebooks, a grip strengthener, because I didn’t know where to keep it, a picture frame with a Banksy postcard, the TV remote and my watch and glasses as well as a glass of water and a cup of tea at night. My iPad and laptop usually sleep next to the bed on the floor.

  8. Lamp, analogue alarm clock, sleep mask, ear plugs, my glasses, Kindle, some real books and a music box that plays a German lullaby.

          • A Danny Fingeroth biog of Stan Lee, Brian Fies ”whatever happened to the world of tomorrow” ( graphic novel plus photos, ”alice isn’t dead” which I’m gonna mention till everyone on this site has read it, Buchans ”39 Steps”, ”drood” by Dan Simmons which was ok for a while but honestly is 800 pages of repetitive nonsense ( kinda like if LOTR was set in Victorian London and just don’t go NEAR it its fucking awful), Pratchett ”the shepherds crown” b/c I like to torture myself with books that make me cry, also his Unseen Academicals. Freddie and Me graphic novel,Alan Moore ”league of extraordinary gentlemen” vol 2, Moore/Curt Swan Superman ”whatever happened to the man of tomorrow” ( excellent), Fried Green Tomatoes ( if ppl haven’t read it, just do),DIVA Groundswell lesbian short stories, a Jewish queer erotica book,and ”proud” a Young Adult book of shorts with illustrations compiled by Juno Dawson and its lovely! @snowfell

          • oh AND Brandt ”eccentric britain” and Nick Harkaway ”gonewaway world” ( i cant recommend his Angelmaker enough, it’s glorious and I can provide a full breakdown as to why)

  9. In addition to the usual sleep paraphernalia most people have mentioned, I also have my We-Vibe charging dock, a pile of unread sci-fi/fantasy books, and, yes, a book about puns.

  10. on my nightstand: three empty beer bottles, 14 books piled in a stack that’s threatening to turn over in the night and murder me in my sleep, a candle that is supposed to smell like vanilla but is maybe more like candy corn, matchbook from an Ybor strip club, a phone charger that does not work, a coaster I never use that I took from a chilis restaurant

  11. Other than contact lens case and emergency glasses, a fetish folder and currently Jane Yolen’s Emerald Circus.

      • I thought my ex was weird that way until now. So it’s a thing? Used glasses half full of water for the cats to get into left everywhere but ESPECIALLY ON THE NIGHTSTAND?

      • Ha! @amidola It’s…not really a nightstand is the thing, but the top of my chest of drawers, which is not next to the bed. So I have a water bottle on the floor instead.

        And there’s 3 chests of drawers next to each other, so I guess I also have a deep red lacquered tray with a candle, a divorce rock and a tiny lidded box with a shilling, a wooden circle, a teeny sand dollar, 3 copper pennies and a sticker saying “Many happy returns”. And a dark moody painting of the moon shining on water. And a set of russian dolls with dice inside.

  12. I’m feeling like we need a new thread/list/article composed of all the books that are in peoples Teetering Towers of Death, and maybe a sex toy one going on many of the comments

    • Truly! I kinda want to emphasize that I have several big bookcases full as well as a deep drawer for sex toys bc otherwise I’m feeling misrepresented 😁

    • On my night stand I have a half empty (or half full) glass of water that’s been there too long, 5 bottles of massage oil, a Himalayan salt lamp, copy of Drive Here and Devastate Me by Megan Falley, 4 playbills from local theatres, and a wooden box full of memorabilia from dates and anniversaries with my girlfriend.

  13. A lamp and fancy lil box with decorative bobby pins I’ve only used once for my “nightstand” is tiny.

    Saw the Star Wars movie last night. It was fun.

    Made ruff puff pastry it was also fun. Finally tried grating frozen butter, very effective until my fingers numb with cold.
    I made 4 mini strawberry pastelitos as a December birthday gift to a dear friend and still have enough dough left to make myself a tomato tart.

  14. I have one nightstand next to me that on top at night has my phone, charger for my watch, a lamp I rarely use, & a clay dog I made 20 years ago at birthday party. On the other side of my bed is my next, which next to me has two tv remotes, keyboard for my media pc connect to my tv, my Surface Pro 5 tablet, & a steel purple water bottle(great for holding water or to hit someone over the head with).

  15. I use one of those ubiquitous IKEA bar cards (minus the top shelf) as a nightstand. Bottom shelf holds the sex toy box and a pair of studio headphones. Top shelf has a water bottle, 4 novels, 1 poetry book, all of the remotes, a phone charger, and the cat’s laser pointer.

  16. On top : tons of near-empty supplement bottles, baby-aspirin, a battery-operated votive candle, a little dish with some jewelry, a beautiful little inlaid-wood treasure chest with a Tarot deck.

    Inside : another Tarot deck inside another beautiful box with copper inlay, an old Crown Royal whisky bag, yet another Tarot deck (my mini one) in a small microfiber drawstring bag, an indigo raw silk cloth I use for my Tarot readings, a bottle of Scotch whisky (one-third full), a miniature bottle of Balvenie whisky filled with sand from Good Harbor Beach, Mass., and a little stash of rocks/seashells which I’m going to give to my QP zucchini love, eventually, and a book by David Safier she lent me, “Maudit Karma”

    Shelf underneath : a silk eye mask, ear plugs, a Laura Secord tin with my prescriptions, a cutting board (?), and empty plastic drawer organizers.

    Bottom shelf : an immersion mixer (what the…?), a beautiful marquetry box filled with little semi-precious stones and tiny seashells, a glass pyramid, my glass of water to take the above prescriptions with a lid to keep the cats’ paws out.
    Bottom drawer : rubbish. Plain and simple. An old landline phone (my bedside table used to be the house phone table before I claimed it for my room), old blank christmas cards, oh gosh I can’t look anymore, ugh.

    I’ve heard of relationship goals, but I’ll start with bedside table goals. I stan your lubes, vibes and matchbooks from fancy strip clubs. I’ll turn my bedside table into a one-nightstand worthy of Autostraddle, you betcha !

  17. Okay, I realize I have been doing it wrong all the time.

    Nightstand is a broken old kitchen wall cupboard, painted red by previous owner, door being the top. On it:

    HRT medication, empty packages of HRT medications, packet leaflets pertaining to the same, unread, in a heap.

    Water boiler, mug, tea bags of cheapest black tea – no, I am not a horrible person, or maybe I am, but first and foremost I’m poor. Books within reach but not on nightstand, mostly scholarly stuff from various schools of radical constructivism, Homer’ verse epics, an old British book about owls I cling to with sentimentality.

    This is the nightstand of a woman who has a bed for going to sleep in after having taken her medication and maybe having had a cup of tea. Until now I never saw the obvious connection between my life and my nightstand, but it is so very obvious! Come to Autostraddle and learn something essential for your life.

    Fine. I will think of some zero cost nightstand rearrangement project, who knows, it might carry over into my life in general?

      • Aye it is, for all means and purposes! And I thought I would have absolutely nothing to do during the holidays …the very opposite appears to be the case now.

    • @undercity witch all you gotta do is throw in some glasses of water and a sex toy and you have full queer woman nightstand kit, according to most of this thread¬

      • You are obviously right! And, I can manage that with a budget of zero to boot, yay! Glass(es) – check. Water – check. Sex toy – check, and: if I put it on the nightstand I might actually figure out what to do with it, and how, which will not happen while it sleeps in a drawer in the other room. Great! Thank you kindly Rachel!

      • Update (and apologies for double posting): Nightstand now has incense and incense holder, tissue paper, a nice ceramic bowl holding sex toy and lube. Water boiler, tea and mug stay where they were, HRT medication in nice apothecary’s bag next to nightstand.

        Much better! Sometimes all it needs is a nudge in the right direction. Thank you for improving my life!

  18. My nightstand in my small apartment is currently one of those ottoman containers from target (I have my scarf collection inside it). On top of it, I have 2 books I’m currently reading, hair brush & comb, collection of hair bands & clips, small jar of vaseline, small tube of lotion, cellphone, and my watch that I program my second alarm into. Technically I have another little table to the other side of my bed, but that just has my alarm clock on it with my first alarm that goes off haha.

    I see y’all are very into hydrating! I don’t hang out in my bedroom a lot during the day, so I keep a water cup out on my kitchen counter where I see it more often. This was cute, thanks for sharing!

  19. I spend a lot of time in bed b/c of chronic illness so my bedside table has approximately 3000 things on/in it.

    On top I have a box of skincare & hair care stuff, my dosette boxes, a cat trinket dish where I keep my engagement ring while I sleep, a tangle fidget, a touch lamp/alarm clock combo, several mugs & my water bottle

    Inside the three drawers is a chaotic mix of heat pads, lotions & potions, magazines I’m never going to get around to reading, physio bits & bobs, my headphones, my kindle, bobby pins, things I’m hiding from my fiancée to give her for Christmas & mystery items that I should probably sort through.

    Basically I’m chaotic but prepared for most eventualities.

    • I’m also chronic illness/ stuck in bed and not in a fun way a lot but I save the 3000 things for the coffee table due to the fact my left arm frequently decides it’s no longer mine and does its own thing , and there’s only ”so” often you can lose something you want behind said nightstand before you give up!

  20. Chapstick, birth control pills, art books by Camilla Rose Garcia and Victoria Frances, adult coloring books by Selina Fenech, Etsy-bought “The Haunted Mansion/purple wallpaper” pencil bag of coloring pencils and a water bottle. Oh and my phone.

  21. * CPAP machine
    * coaster for beverages with empty coffee cup
    * lip balm
    * Chumby from 2009 that makes a reappearance every few years when I break it out to stream Pandora
    * tissues
    * lamp
    * 12% AHA glycolic body lotion
    * stack of books which threatens to overtake everything

  22. On my nightstand: 3 books I will read one day, a journal, a candle, expired lush body lotion, two dead batteries, a heating pad sock, my glasses case and two glasses cleaning cloths I don’t use. In the drawers: Sex toys

  23. My nightstand is pretty small but I’m able to fit quite a bit of stuff in or on the shelves.

    The top has my digital clock/ipod charger (yes I still own one of these), a mug that has ‘You, my darling matter’ with pens, gum, mints, Vaseline and assorted cards for doctor’s appointments, ect.

    The drawer has a calendar, instruction manuals for various electronic devices, assorted religious papers and a Catholic prayer book. Random I know.

    The last shelf has 4 books I have yet to read, a bible (given as a gift years ago and I don’t have the heart to throw it out), a bag of Skittles from when I recently went to the movies, vitamins and the box my iPhone came in.

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