When my fiance and I decided to take the plunge and combine apartments a couple of years back, we knew there would be some challenges when it came to decor. He has great taste, but primarily prizes functionality over all else, whereas I have been known to compromise functionality for the sake of appearance. (I blame Instagram and design blogs for this personality flaw.)

But there was one thing we agreed on from the beginning: We needed a better home office setup than was previously on premises.  We already had a really good-looking secretary desk that was perfectly sharable for our study. Everything was working out great until a couple of days later I realized that we needed a lamp to go with it.

We started our search, which meant multiple trips to West Elm and a number of disappointing returns, and then finally we found the lamp that has been lighting up our lives ever since. We love the (LED) lamp, for many reasons—but the smartest choice we made with this buy was to make sure it had USB outlets. Our apartment is old, and there aren’t a lot of places to plug things in; for that reason, in the past, I was constantly leaving the house without my phone or wireless headphones charged, or unplugging other things we use all the time (microwave, clock radio) to charge my phone.

On top of that, now I always know exactly where my phone is, because it’s on the desk, being charge by the lamp. This arrangement has forced me to stop charging by the bed at night—cutting down on the dreaded blue light that keeps our brains awake—and turned the bedroom into a phone-free zone, all of which is pretty cool and I swear has improved my sleeping habit. You might say that a lamp with USB ports has changed our lives for the better, and you would not be mistaken. But don’t take my word for it: Get your own. This one, for only $35.99 on Amazon, is a perfect blend of functionality and Instagram-friendly aesthetics—what has turned out to be a pretty symbolic reminder of what both my partner and I are bringing to the table.

Brightech Mode LED USB Side Table & Desk Lamp

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