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What Stas Karanikolaou Can’t Live Without

Photo-Illustration: The Strategist. Photo: Tati Bruening

If you’re like us, you’ve probably wondered what famous people add to their carts. Not the JAR brooch and Louis XV chair but the hair spray and the electric toothbrush. We asked YouTube influencer Stas Karanikolaou — who recently co-founded Sunny Vodka with Zack Bia — about her bedazzled water bottle, digital camera for going out, and pig pillow she can’t live without.

I have to put SPF on every day — sometimes twice — on my face, neck, chest, and hands. I’ve heard for so long that those are the first places you start to get wrinkles and see aging. Skin cancer runs in my family, too, so sunscreen is very important to me. My dermatologist recommended this one to me, and I’ve been using it for years. It sinks in nicely and is moisturizing. I love the tinted one because my skin’s naturally more on the red side. This helps calm my redness down a little bit.

A friend told me to get this and now I’ve been using it for about a year or two. It’s the best ice face roller I’ve tried because it’s metal and stays the coldest longest. I use it in the morning to de-puff my face and wake me up, especially after a long night. Either that or I put water and ice in a bowl and just dunk my face into it. This is a lot easier, though.

Hailey really did something with this. The salted caramel is so yummy, and it makes my lips feel so plump and moisturized. It also lasts. I don’t feel like I have to apply it as often as I have to apply other lip products. Right now, I have it on by itself, but I also wear it over lip liner when I’m going out and have makeup on. It makes my lips super glossy but not sticky at all, which is great. It’s really something that can be worn with a full look or by itself, since it’s a lip treatment too and has peptides in it.

I just started reusing this maybe six months ago. I was randomly in the mall and I walked into Victoria’s Secret and saw it. I used to wear this when I was in high school, so I bought it and it immediately brought me back to those days. It made me really nostalgic, and I’ve become obsessed with it again. I have a little roller of it in my purse, a bottle in my bathroom, and a bottle downstairs hidden in my bookshelf that’s by my front door. I wear it every day now.

This is a funny thing to list as something I can’t live without, but I just spend so much time on it. I’m actually laying on my cloud couch right now. When I have movie nights with friends, we hang on my couch. When we all had to stay home in quarantine, I worked from my couch. I have an emotional attachment to it. I spend probably 70 percent of my life on my couch. The only thing is that you have to fluff it every few hours because it gets really frumpy. I don’t mind, though, because it’s so comfortable. It’s like you’re laying on a duvet. I think I’ve had mine for like two or three years now. I first saw it in one of those AD house-tour videos.

My friend Kelsey brought me into a store that sells all of these Squishmallow things, and I thought she was insane. I was like, “Why do you have these big-ass stuffed animals on your bed? It’s so not cute. Why are you buying more?” She made me squeeze one, and I immediately fell in love. I was like, I completely understand why you need this pillow. It literally feels like a marshmallow. I like the pig specifically because it’s longer, almost like a body pillow. I have one on my bed and two on my couch. It’s so squishy and comfortable, and my pig is now my best friend. I can’t sleep without it.

[Editor’s note: Stassie’s 16-inch Squishmallow is out of stock, but we found this 12-inch version available at Walmart.]

Apple AirPods Max

I have these with me all the time so I can escape if I need to. Sometimes even if I’m not listening to music, I’ll put them on and press the noise-cancellation button to make everything quiet around me. It’s especially great if I’m on a plane and there’s a baby crying and I just want to sleep. But the sound quality is really nice too — they get super loud. Mine are the classic silver-and-white ones, but I also bedazzled them, so they’re really cute. I put the crystals on one by one, which took me about two hours.

Canon Powershot is my favorite thing to bring with me on a night out. It’s so much more fun to bring out than a phone. I wouldn’t say it takes the best-quality photos, but that’s why I like it. It has its own special look. It’s very different from an iPhone picture or my vlog camera that takes really nice-quality photos. It’s not quite fully vintage, like a film camera. I’ve had mine for about two years now, and I have it with me at all times. It’s easy to put in a little bag. Or I put one of those phone wrist charms that everyone used to have on their phones.

I don’t like room-temperature water; I like cold water. This keeps my water cold at all times. I started using it maybe three years ago, and I would say that it’s gotten me to drink a lot more water throughout the day. I have it with me at all times and I’m constantly refilling it. It’s really helped me. I think I almost drink a gallon of water a day because I have the 32-ounce one, and I fill it up about four to five times a day. I bedazzled one in about 12 hours.

Zack Bia and I wanted to make an affordable vodka with quality ingredients and better taste and branding. We wanted something we could easily bring out with our own friend group. Sunny is made in small batches and goes through an extra filtration process using California limestone, so it tastes smoother and a little sweeter than other vodkas. It’s so yummy, and the only thing I drink now. I always have it for dinner parties, hangouts, and I even brought it to Paris Fashion Week. Personally, I don’t get hangovers after drinking it, either, which is another plus. My favorite drink is a little Sunny soda with some lemon.

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What Stassie Karanikolaou Can’t Live Without