In this series, we explore what it means to be a “Smoke Sister” through interviews with inspiring women that we either know personally or admire from afar. Smoke is a brand of connection, intentional living, self-care, and uplifting friendships. With each interview, we hope to delve deeper into this culture.

Vanessa Cuccia is a Smoke Sister I have admired from afar for years now! Her business, Chakrubsis a welcome innovation in the male-dominated sex toy industry. More than just objects of pleasure, her pure crystal products inspire people to seek deeper healing, connection, and spirituality through sexuality. Of course, being a holistic practitioner myself, I fully support Vanessa's mission of healing shame around our sexuality in order to uncover a deeper sense of pleasure and purpose, and to move stuck energy. Vanessa is a pioneer in her field, and I loved getting to know more about her through this interview. Enjoy!

Bio: Tell us a little bit about yourself, your work, and where we can find you?

My name is Vanessa Cuccia. In 2011 I created a concept for sex toys that would utilize natural crystal as the material - Chakrubs. Since then it has blossomed into a brand that I am happy to assist develop. This started with the creation of a product, but it has become so much more. Chakrubs is dedicated to encouraging self-awareness and love, through pursuit of education and acknowledgement of ancient wisdom and intuition. You can find my work at my website, chakrubs.com - and follow my personal IG at @vanessa_cuccia or @chakrubs. 

Perfume: What is an early or favorite scent memory you have? What comes to mind when you imagine your favorite scent?

What a fun question! I recall loving the scent of my Strawberry Shortcake play set. There was this little kitchen with tiny cupcakes, that when you put them in the oven they changed color and had a scent. I would love to smell that again! 

Self care: What is one non-negotiable self-care ritual that you try to regularly attend to?

Dream-sleep. I place strong emphasis on the guidance that comes through from my dreams - and I enhance my dreams by sleeping with my Chakrubs. Placing value on the lessons my subconscious has allows me to form deep connections to myself as well as the crystals.

Nature: We take great inspiration from travel & nature. What is the most inspiring natural place you’ve ever been to and why?

There is something about the bluffs on Long Island. Recently I realized that this was the place where my fascination with crystals began - finding geodes on the beach with my family. It is home, and the water always elevates my mood. No matter what, every time I go there, there seems to be something new to discover. 

Joyful Presence: Here at Smoke, we believe in fostering joy. We feel that this emotion is a key element in well-being, creativity, resistance, and productivity. How do you cultivate joy in your daily life?

My cats. Having cats brings me the most joy in my life. I can really understand why the ancient Egyptians worshipped felines. I look at my pets and my heart immediately opens. Having these familiars around reminds me to get cozy as often as possible. They are very dependent on me - and follow me around. It is so healing to experience their “cuteness” - what pure love!

And finally: What’s your greatest hope for the future?

My greatest hope for the future is to continue to bring ideas to life. Sexual energy is creative energy - and I have plenty. I want to broaden my idea of who I am for the rest of my life, and inspire people to do the same.