Stories by: Kathleen

Beauty, Fashion, Fashion Week, New YorkYour Guide to Fashion’s Night Out Freebies

“Excuse me. Sorry. Just trying to get by. Ow, my toe’s wet. Excusez-moi….” Last year’s Fashion’s Night Out was fun and all, but after repeating the preceding 5 phrases verbatim while fighting off the uptown scrum, I’ve resolved to take it easy this year. After all, Fashion’s Night Out is all about fun and scoring exclusives, free munchies, drinks, and that elusive picture with Kim Kardashian you can smugly upload to Twitter. Here’s our guide to maximize your ROF (return on fun) with minimal effort:

All-in-One

Ponytail bar, smokey eye station, DIY arm party bar and nail art from Rebecca Minkoff at Saks Fifth Avenue, 5th Floor at 611 Fifth Avenue.

One-upping her circus theme from last year, Stacey Bendet is planning an ’80s themed sleepover with chick flicks, braid bars, manicures, charm bracelet stations, tattoo bars, and palm readers at 80 West 40th Street. 

Beauty

The most iconic hairstyles to come out of Fashion Week (like last season’s side braid at Alexander Wang) come from the hands of Redken’s creative consultant, Guido Palau (just profiled in the NYTimes.) Redken stylists will be on hand at 565 Fifth Avenue between 46th and 47th Streets to give you the season’s trendiest hairstyles.

Come to Intermix at 812 Washington Street for makeup touchups from Benefit Beauty and music from The Knocks.

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Accessories, Cheap & Chic, Fashion, JewelryObsession of the Moment: Rachel Rachel Roy Organic Hoop Earrings

Beauty, MakeupLipgloss for Athletes

Have you guys noticed that running races is the new thing? It seems like every weekend, someone I know is running, running a race. People I used to count on for closing out bar last call are now calling it an early night at 1 AM because they have to wake up at early the next day to go run a 3K that cost them $150. It’s been kind of a real evolution, so much so that I think a viable branch on the tree to “grownuphood” is being responsible enough to go home early on a Saturday night to run a race the next day.

So for my runner friends or athletes that want a lip product that color-boosting and longwear-enough to make your “crossed the finish line with my bib” picture Facebook-profile-worthy, I suggest Vincent Longo’s Pearlessence Lip and Cheek Gel Stain. It’s a sip, swim, sweat, run, workout-proof stain that can be used on your lips and cheeks to get that “I just worked out” flush. Presumably, if you’re already working out, you can skip putting this on your cheeks, but if you’re not, you can get that alive, circulation-boosting color too. The formula is creamy and cushy with an almost gel-like texture that glides onto your lips, thanks to the glycerin component of the ingredient list. The color deposits quickly in a thin film that gently “stains” the color. All of the colors have a slight “pearly” sheen to them (hence the product name) that make them wearable. No one wants to admit to wearing makeup at the gym or while working out (except for LA citizens and myself), but this is one product that is pretty and natural enough to make it perfectly acceptable to dash on pre-workout.

Fashion, Obsessions, ShoesObsession of the Moment: Monika Chiang Artemys Sneaker

Hair, Spas & SalonsRedken Chromatics

“Who are you?”

This simple question, asked at the beginning of my hair appointment with David Stanko, the Michelangelo of haircolorists at Cutler Salon, threw me for a loop. Who was I? Depending on the day, I’m many things. Some days, I’m the adventurous girl who gave up a career in corporate America to pursue her dreams of being a writer (this coincides with my occasional desire to cut off all my hair and get a cute, Gwyneth-style lob or long bob.)  Some days, I’m the anxious girl who stresses about her future and potential for success (and who clings to her long hair like a security blanket.) I can’t remember exactly what I ended up saying to Stanko’s question. But thanks to Stanko and Redken Chromatics, I know that the one thing I’m not is the girl with ombre, overprocessed, straw-dry hair.

The color world has been buzzing about the newest tool in the colorist’s bag of tricks: Redken Chromatics, a new line that fortifies, strengthens, and delivers bright, shiny color. I headed to Cutler Salon to try it formyself. After talking with me and taking a look at my hair, Stanko disavowed me of a misguided notion for ombre hair and decided that “who I was” was a girl with a glossy sheen of sable, cappuccino, and latte tones, whose hair would have “an artful movement and beautifully catch the light, whether it be in bars or outdoors.” READ MORE

Beauty, NailsNail Polish Pens of Awesomeness

A lack of steady hands precludes me from every being a surgeon or a DIY nail specialist. Simple strokes turn into blobby messes, straight lines become wobbly diagonals, and I wind up needing 6 inefficient coats of polish to color one nail. But Laqa’s nail polish pens are, as touted “pens of awesomeness.” With them, I’m suddenly the girl that can do nonchalant home manicures while sitting at home while watching Gilmore Girls reruns. These pens evenly dispense pigments like “Incestuous” (a pretty pastel purple), “Squid Ink” (an eye-catching teal blue) and “Nookie” (a bright fuchsia pink mix) with an easy click-top so that you can cover an entire nail in two to three brush strokes. The colors dry quickly so you can build color, and the wide brush tip makes it easy to do simple nail designs like polka dots. Laqa also supports independent artists who design their one-of-a-kind packaging, and a proceed of each product’s sale supports the artists. Click, click!

Accessories, Fashion, Jewelry, ObsessionsObsession of the Moment: C.Wonder Enamel Initial Cuff

Beauty, MakeupTeaching My Mom to Wear Eyeliner

Like any good mom, my mom was my first and best teacher in life. She’s taught me long division and the importance of kindness, humility, and charity.  She taught me how to appreciate black and white movies and Gregory Peck.  She’s taught me “Don’ts” like, “Don’t ever wear Chanel Allure to church again, that is not an appropriate fragrance” and “Don’t even think about putting on flip flops for dinner, they are not shoes.”  But one thing she never taught me? How to apply makeup, something I’ve learned largely through DIY trial and error, Michelle Phan Youtube videos, and surreptitiously observing makeup artists work their craft backstage. My mom is a skincare, but not makeup kind of woman. She’ll happily do cranial collagen-boosting face massages or will splurge on the latest anti-aging face cream made out of Icelandic algae kelp and rainbows, but I’ve never seen her apply even a tinted moisturizer. That’s why it was such a surprise when she emailed me the other day, asking for advice about the best eyeliner brands. READ MORE

Beauty, SkincareRodial Glamtox

The sales associates at Space NK are the best kind: knowledgeable, non-pushy, obsessed beauty junkies. I should know better than to ever “kill time” by browsing Space NK but kill I did, along with my AMEX.

Maybe you’re like me and you try to stay away from foaming face cleansers because you find them to be too drying. If that’s the case, Rodial Glamtox will be your thing. The texture is unique—it’s sort of a cloudy, smooth emulsion that transmutes into a milky toner with water. It’s odorless, with an easy pump dispenser. For those if you familiar with the feel of Shu Uemura cleansing oil after adding water, it’s like that, but thicker and more viscous. Foaming bubble purists may not be used to this type of texture but trust me, it does one of the best jobs at dissolving the heaviest face and eye makeup while still retaining all the good moisture oils. You can rinse with water or wipe it off with a warm facecloth, it’s that gentle. Afterwards, your face feels like it emerged from a good, hot steam bath, that’s how pure and clean it feels. It’s not a “squeaky clean” feeling, it’s radiant and soft in a way that makes you want to self-pet your skin like a puppy.

Now, is it as thorough a cleanser as the Eve Lom? No, I still have yet to see anything that competes with the completeness of the Lom cleanser experience. But the Eve Lom cleanser can be a laborious, multi-step process (5-10 minutes), so Rodial Glamtox is a welcome, quick, effective cleanser to add to my cleanser arsenal when I want to get to bed ASAP.

The Rodial Glamtox can be found at Space NK (unfortunately, where the site says it is currently unavailable) but don’t worry, it’s also available at Nordstrom and ASOS. It retails for $80.

FashionFall Obsessions: Fisherman Sweaters

Normally, I look forward to Fall like I look forward to a cleaning at the dentist or cleaning out my fridge. But the unusual early start of warm weather has left me with a bit of ennui about Spring/Summer clothes. I’m ready to put away the pastels, the Skillrex neon, and topknots to embrace a darker, moodier fall. When temps dipped down last week to the 70s and I was waiting an interminable 10 minutes for the next 6 train, I street-style stalked this chic girl next to me. Standing apart from the aztec bandage skirt wearing lemmings at Union Square, she was wearing a white lace-edged handkerchief dress with a perfectly distressed, holey tan fisherman’s sweater that gently fell off one shoulder. The look was very “Oh, I threw on this sweater I inherited from my grandpa who has a compound in Nantucket because nights get chilly there.” It was a perfect transition outfit into Fall and one I can’t wait to emulate. Read on for my picks and some inspiration pictures of this look: READ MORE

The Daily Obsession draws from the expertise of a coast-to-coast editorial team offering dedicated readers reports of the most luxurious products and trends. We provide sophisticated and relevant angles on the latest fashion trends, must-have beauty products, insider interviews, travel destinations and of course, our current obsessions.

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