Maven pick: Matte makeup (for a change)

Good afternoon, Tuesday. It's getting humid outside and I'm on the cranky side of the street today. I must admit, I won't be mad at Fall when she comes.

And speaking of Fall, have you started thinking about your fashion and beauty needs for said season? Don't roll your eyes at me, missy. It's time.

One of my favorite Fall finds is the new matte eyeshadows from Chanel. The brown quad called Clair Obscur is magical. And I have yet to try the more colorful one called Quiet Revolution pictured but can't wait to see those colors. Truth be told- I'm wearing a lot more neutrals on my eyes of late and was excited to try something matte. I've never, ever been a fan of matte anything when it comes to makeup as I'm more of a glowgetter, but as the years pass, all that shimmer feels a bit off base. I know what you're thinking- I too am afraid of looking like a Kardashian lost in the 80s, but it doesn't have to be that way. Plus, matte is super flattering on more mature skin because too much shimmer can add to the look of wrinkles. And it stays on like woah. Don't worry about that pic at the top of the post- because these colors are not at all 80s, they're very much right this minute now. I too was worried I'd look like an aging Pat Benatar, but alas- not at all. Not that that would suck, come to think of it...

Anyhoo, this quad is gorgeous, absolutely home run gorgeous. I have hazel eyes and love the way the colors bring out the best of my eye color. Very pretty, very subtle, albeit slightly smoky. I do mine with a bit of dark black liquid liner (my current favorite is from Hourglass) very close to the lash line and one coat of mascara (currently enjoying Glossier's Lash Slick). It's a pretty look with a bit of bronzer and a subtle cheek. I highly recommend. Oh and tread lightly- the colors (particularly the darker ones) are super pigmented and a little goes a long way. Blend, blend, blend.

Next up is tackling my fear of matte lipstick, which to me seems like a puckery, dry mess but what do I know?

Cause that's what's up this going to the matte kind of Tuesday in the 212. Yours, in new seasons and matte finishes. XO

Making memories (in Ventnor and Margate)

Good afternoon, kiddos. it's Monday and it's definitely, well, Monday.

This weekend I found myself at the Jersey shore as you know. I haven't spent much time there since I've lived in New York, but it was surprisingly delightful.

As a bit of personal beach history, I have always, always loved Montauk, or at least since I moved to New York. It's a place that is special and dear to my heart, where there's an energy that feels in tune with mine. Or I should say felt in tune with mine. Because now it's been taken over by douchebags in sea planes and Vilbrequin bathing suits and Instagram celebs and I can't deal. What's very funny to me about the Hamptons is how everyone talks about how happy they are to be out of the city- yet the whole city is right there with them- from everyone they know to Soul Cycle and back again. It's like same/same, just by the sea. Also the traffic to get out there is completely demoralizing, and the price of admission is not even for the 1%, it's for a microcosm of society that thinks it's perfectly cool to drop about 800 bucks a night to drink some rose and pose with a real housewife. No. Thank. You.

I'm so sad about it truly but what can I do? have to move on.

So off we went to the Jersey shore- particularly the South Jersey shore, which is where Philadelphia people go to the beach.  And in particular, the whole Margate/Ventor area, which is next to Atlantic City and full of more Jews than Israel. Well not quite, but you get my drift. This is a very Jewish beach area and has always been that way. And though I am as self loathing as the rest of you MOTs out there, I swear it felt absolutely divine to be amongst my people. Hilarious in every way. And most of all, extremely comforting. I'm not sure why hairy chested men in Stars of David make me feel comfortable, but they do. Not to mention all the yentas doing their beach walks in visors and clutch bags. Amazing. 

And the beach itself is super easy and accessible as well as beautiful. I am a true water sign and if I don't see beach for months on end, I get a real case of the blues. I love to smell and see the ocean, and the water was lovely, if not a bit too seaweed strewn. The inside of my bathing suit looked a bit like an underwater science experiment.

But the real highlight of my weekend besides the overly tanned Jews and the beach time was my visit to a true South Jersey beach staple-Memories in Margate.

If you are not familiar, psssh. This is a place that is legendary amongst Philly folk. You may even cringe about it, but you kind of have to love it. It's owned by Jerry Blavat, a 78 year old DJ with questionable ties to certain, ahem, types. Anyway, Blavat (also known as the Geator don't ask me why) spins oldies- from motown to disco to a crowd that is truly an anomaly. I saw 21 year olds (and probably younger) dancing side by side with 65-70 year olds and everything in between and above. It is a beach institution and it is more fun that I can possibly explain on this here blog.  It is packed with people all weekend and besides dancing and almost peeing your pants from the hilarity of it all is watching people come in the front door- because they all come in dancing from the second they come in. It's amazing. Truly. And Jerry's commentary during his set is worth the ten dollar cover.  My parents used to go and my sister used to do when she was underaged, and now we were all there together and it was so much fun. It's the kind of spot where you order a 7 & 7 and just dance your silly butt off to songs like "Runaround Sue" and "Night Fever" and "Le Freak".  Think grown up bar mitzvah (where one parent is Jewish and one parent is Italian).

For me, it was so nice to experience a whole different vibe, yet one that felt so very familiar. it was like coming home. And needless to say, I'll be back to see Lucy the Elephant and all of my tribe. Seriously considering a rental next Summer because f the Hamptons. I do love it there, but to me, it's all about easy, clean beaches and kick back sandy fun. And nothing beats a good beach walk with my sis. More please.

Cause that's what's up this oldie but a goodie kind of Monday in the 212. Yours, in motown, disco, and hot fun in the Summertime. XO


Call me maybe?

Good morning and TGIF!!

I'm looking forward to a little sun (please Lord let there be) this weekend with my fam down at the Jersey shore. Yes I know. Jersey shore and I are not really a thing, but this little Cancerian water baby needs to see some ocean stat. I'm excited. 

Also, here's something. Novel some might say. PHONE CALLS.

I know this is a ridiculous proclamation, but truth be told (and I'm sure it's true for the rest of you too) I never, ever talk on the phone anymore. Unless it's a conference call. But social calls? No. Never. Ever.

I've become a textbook texter, Facebook messenger, social media commenter.  And of course, the best of all- actual face to face time, in person. But because of evolution, I have completely forgotten that picking up the phone and chatting is actually a bonafide option of connection and communication. So this week, I've made no less than 3 long length phone calls to friends I have not seen in a minute- from one who's been upstate all Summer to my childhood bestie to my sister. I've actually talked on the phone and enjoyed it. And phone calls make me think of my pink princess phone in high school, where I endlessly gabbed to all my peeps and crushes and loved it. There was something magical about it back then. 

It's funny how hopeless our endless streams of "keeping in touch" can seem sometimes. I may know what you eat for dinner or what you wear to work because of Instagram or Facebook. But do I know much more really? And texting it great but for some reason I have always found it invasive. Because the expectation is an immediate response. And that's just annoying. Email of course is a good long form communique but feels more business-like in many ways. I'm telling you- this weekend- pick up the phone and reach out via voice. You won't believe how satisfying it is. And I can't even believe I have to mention this.  But true. Try it. You'll feel close. It's nice to hear a voice. Maybe a ton of you Facetime but I really don't like that. Video is not my best media form. Anyway, silly post. But wanted to share. Don't forget about actually making phone calls on your phone. It still suits in between the scrolling and swiping and shopping. It's nice that. I know anyone millennial and below is probably eye rolling emoji'ing me right now, but whatever. And ps, I must really love you if we talk on the phone. It's reserved for people I really, really want to talk to.

Cause that's what's up this ring a ding of a Thursday in the 212. Yours, in reaching out and touching someone. So call me maybe.XO



Maven recommends: A very pretty pop up

Good afternoon, and TGIF. Yay. Let the weekend begin.

So don't kill me, fellow New York chicas but I have a retail recco that may break your bank, but ooh. It's good. And you will want it all- so consider yourself (and your wallet) warned.

A friend of mine had the breeziest, easiest Summer frock on the other night- you know the brief- sleeveless, floral, maxi. A mix between a caftan and a sundress. Beautiful neckline for a peek of bra and some layered jewels. The dress was the genius creation of Jane Mayle, she of aughts fashion fame, who in the past few years has resurrected her line (Maison Mayle) to include looks that are boho, feminine, and altogether cool. I'm in love with the whole collection naturally and can clearly remember a top I splurged on in the late 90s- navy blue silk with a cameo cut out. Gorgeous. 

But cut to now, because Ms. Mayle has a beautiful pop up shop that is opened last winter and is up until the end of July over on Great Jones Street. It's open Monday to Friday and it is simply- all that. And then some. Look at her- so chic. You know you need some of that.

The store feels like a glimpse into her personal atelier, and the beautiful selection of blouses and dresses and jewelry won't disappoint girls who like a vintage but modern, feminine mystique. I'm a sucker for that sleeveless Thea dress for sure, but so many other beautiful pieces. If I were you, I'd go to there right now. Surely some of you have a Summer Friday? She'll close for the month of August and be back for the Fall, but if you're in need of some perfect pieces to round out your Summer wardrobe, go check it out. 

Cause that's what's up this well frocked Friday in the 212. Yours, in everything old is new again. XO

The Mayle shop is located at 33 Great Jones Street. 

A cheeky post (and rant)

TGIF. YES. YES.

So I have a bit of a bone to pick. A grievance, if you will. 

First let me say I am NOT body shaming here in any way. I celebrate women of all shapes and sizes. But it's Summertime in New York City and there's a scourge happening. A plague. A vulgarity I can't accept.

There is, right here in the scorching hot 212, an absolute ass cheek epidemic. I can't.

Walk down any street in New York and you'll see ass cheeks. I kid you not.  And although the boys might enjoy this free butt peep show, I do not. Put your ass cheeks back in their shorts. Please. Dear Lord. Please.

I would gladly give up Gucci (maybe not really if only women would stop doing this. From too short denim "mom" shorts to way too short running shorts, I'm seeing a whole lotta ass. And I don't like it. 

I'm not sure at what point these women are in their journey and I suppose I can golf clap their confidence, but what in their minds tells them that it's perfectly ok to walk down the streets of Soho with their buns out? Are they taking "sun's out, buns out" a little too far? I think so. Absolutely. I'm happy for everyone that they're working hard on that butt, but keep it in your yoga pants. Sure the random butt at the top of this post is beautiful. But still...

If you are at the beach, perhaps this is ok. In the urban jungle, I'm a hard, strong, fervent no. It's true this is a look generally embraced by younger women, but it's raunchy and gross and just plain tacky.  A crime against fashion to the nth power. Plus, how do you sit on a subway seat with your arse hanging out? How gross is that? Don't get me wrong- I love denim shorts as much as the next girl. But you get my drift.

So mamas, stuff your trunk junk back in your shorts. Buy them a size bigger. Whatever you have to do.  I don't want to see all that. And straight dudes who by slim chance may be reading this, I don't care what you think. It's a yucky thing and that's that. All in favor of bringing back a bit of length in shorts, say "aye".

Cause that's what's up this pearl clutch, bone pick of a Friday in the 212. Yours, in keeping it under wraps. XO

Maven pick: A cleanser to soothe and groove this Summer

Good afternoon, Monday. Hope you had a lovely weekend. Glorious here on the East Coast. 

So it's been a minute since I've given a product shout out but shout out I must. Full disclosure: I am a very lazy face washer. That does not in any way mean I skip washing my face at night, very much on the contrary. But I don't like anything I can't wipe off with a cotton pad. I love all sorts of micellar waters and cleansing waters as I've mentioned here on this blog. But my new fav and great for Summertime refreshment has to be Rodial's Dragon's Blood Cleansing Water. The name may be dramatic, but the product is not. It's got rose in it to soothe, said dragon's blood from some exotic tree which protects against environmental aggressors, and Vitamin B3 for radiance and Hyaluronic Acid for plumping and youth giving. It's kind of a cleanser and then some situation. And it's so gentle- perfect for sensitive flowers like myself.

I love the fresh feel of this water and how it literally removes all manner of sludge from my face. Sludge I didn't even know I had. Like morning sludge. Who knew I was sleeping on so much schmutz? I use it day and night and it completely removes everything, including eye makeup. It feels lovely after you shower in the am and creates a nice base for any serum or moisturizer or primer.  And at night, it's a simple swipe and your makeup and day is gone just like that. More time to catch up on your favorite shows. Or snuggle with your dog. Or shop the insane amount of sales happening. I don't know. I like the idea of a skincare routine that is quick and easy but super effective. Add this cleanser to your roster and you won't be sorry. Oh yea, I know. The price tag for some water seems cray cray. But you'd spend this on a good cleanser, so why not spend it on its watery counterpart? Bonus points for the dispenser- just prop a cotton round on the top of the bottle and press for ultimate saturation.

Cause that's what's up this fire breathing, gentle dragon of a cleanser of a Monday. Yours, in product lovin' and Summer dreamin'. XO

Valentino Couture: A reason to believe

Good afternoon and happy Friday.

As we all know, we're living in cuckoo times. I read the news today, oh boy times. It was the worst of times, it was the worst of times times. So it goes without saying we all need a distraction. And for me, that much needed break from reality into sheer fashion fantasy was the Valentino couture show this week in Paris. OMFG. Couture as religion. Magical.

Of course, Kaia Gerber's outsized hair almost broke the internet. But there was so much more going on. The clothes were everything that my referential wheelhouse could imagine. There were 60s moments. 70s moments. Texan moments. Dandy moments. Almost every moment I'd ever want to have.

Vogue's review of the show included the term "magic" over and over again, but also the following nods to the overwhelming amount of influences on this unforgettable collection. When quoting the designer: "

"Couture involves a deeper and more intimate perspective, to go further into your own vision of beauty.” 

The review then goes on to say "this season his vision involves a mash-up of Greek mythology, 17th- and 18th-century painting, the films of Pasolini and the photographs of Deborah Turbeville, medieval armor, and Ziggy Stardust. Sounds mad yet looks magnificent, especially in capes appliquéd, embroidered, and even perhaps quilted with gods and goddesses. An evening dress composed of multiple brocades, rhinestones, sequins, pearls, and vivid textural embroideries is described by Piccioli as “Renaissance meets Versailles meets ’60s whatever” but the truth is far more fabulous: It’s not a set of references, but a dream of a dress, which is what couture should be, frankly".

Truly you just need to see for yourself. I fell in love a million times on this runway. I almost couldn't believe how beautiful, and apparently Mr. Valentino got teary eyed as the audience leapt to its feet. Well done to the next generation at Valentino. Thank you for letting this gal, and the rest of us, dream a little bigger. Thanks for reminding me to shoot for the stars. Link to your dreams here. That green cape alone has me rethinking my entire life.

Cause that's what's up this haute Friday in the 212. Yours, in middle fingers to practicality and beautiful, beautiful clothes. XO



What to wear when the weather's like woah

Good afternoon, y'all. Happy pre-4th. So much to celebrate this year (loud throat clear).

Moving on, it's hot. Like, real hot.

I was just cruising through Refinery 29 this afternoon and they had lots to say about what to wear when it's too hot to wear just about anything. Perhaps I'm not quite the demo, but those looks are not gonna fly. A bra top as top? Um. No. Not.

Biker shorts? Absolutely no way.

Would Bianca Jagger wear bike shorts? Absolutely no way. The bra as top? Perhaps. I myself always lean in to my love for vintage when it comes to Summertime, particularly the 70s. All day, every day.

For me, the only way to do hot is to wear something long and breezy and of the dress varietal. I only want dresses in this heat and that's that. I like a bit of Bedouin chic myself and this Barney's dress/caftan fits the bill. Love.

This Madewell striped number (ya I'm into stripes right now) has the right shape- loose. Drink all the rose and look cute while doing so. Done. 

This Black Crane overall situation is real good. I love how easy it is- perfect for weekends out and about. I'm breaking the no pants rule here cause jumpsuits don't count. And this one has a grownup kid thing that suits a playful mood. And yes, love black and white simple Summer moments.

This Gap dress is so my style- love the Indian print vibe and super cool and breezy and nicely priced, unlike the vintage Indian cotton dresses it is inspired by.  And nice and bare if that's your vibe.

And this little Ulla girl I happen to own. Love her. Super comfy and even though long sleeved, awfully cool. Love the vintage 70s feel and have never bought a piece from Ulla Johnson I haven't worn to death. Cute. Very cute indeed. Could even wear this in fall with leather leggings and a denim jacket. Scored her at a sample sale last week.

So truly, fear not if you don't want to wear a bra as a top. or if biker shorts don't suit your scorch. I for one love an easy, breezy dress or casually loose jumpsuit. 

Cause that's what's up this pre-4th swelter of a day in the steamy steamy 212. Yours, in sand between the toes and attempts at patriotism. Oh, and lots of beverages. XO


Pride for my city, and for all those who dwell here.

Good late afternoon, Sunday. I know- weekend posting. Weird.

But today is a special day- and this weekend is a special weekend- it's Pride Weekend here in New York City and I wanted to take the opportunity to wish the very best and happiest day to all of those partaking. This has always been a big weekend in New York, but somehow, this year it feels bigger. 

And marketers far and wide are taking the opportunity to sparkle- from Target to Uber to Kimpton Hotels to Soul Cycle, I'm seeing a ton of support for the LGBTQ universe, which is great, even if it does smack as slightly opportunistic but what else is new? What I do like more than an attempt to grasp the zeitgeist is that this very strong community deserves the support of culture at large, and when marketers get in on the act it just goes to show the power of this very vibrant group to transcend boundaries and be part of something more mass.

And to me, Pride weekend has become a lot more than an opportunity for the gays, although that is always front and center and will continue to be thank goodness. In our current political climate, Pride is a celebration of diversity in general. And there is no city more diverse than New York, even if you read the Harper's article like I did, it's still true. We come to New York to be who we are, to run from more close minded area codes, and to live in a city where we can connect with people just like us, and people nothing like us. It's a welcoming place for people of all sorts, no matter who you love, what you love, and who you are. We may be saddled with an overly affluent existence that feels unattainable, but there is still the sense of not having to be afraid to be yourself. Yes, there are crimes that happen there that are steeped in hate, but we fight back against them. I feel very fortunate to live in a city where we can be who we want, love who we want, wear what we want, and do whatever the heck we want. And where a jackass who spits racial slurs at a midtown lunch joint gets trolled by a mariachi band outside his apartment is shown who's boss. New Yorkers. That's who.

I love that straight and non-straights alike are celebrating Pride this weekend. Love is love and that's the truth. Even though we are living in a time when anything "other" feels threatened,  we have to raise a glass to inclusion and individuality.  Cheers to all who show bravery for what they believe in and stay true to who they are. Thank you for fighting for your freedom and waving the flag today. I hope you're celebrating wherever you are. Amidst so much distress, I am so happy to see joy today. Our city and our world is better because of all of you.

Cause that's what's up this pride filled Sunday in New York City. Yours, in hearts and rainbows, in the name of love. XO

This post is about Scotland

Oh, hi Wednesday. Howzit?

So as most of you know, I finally went on a proper holiday, to Scotland. As a Jew, I realize it's an unlikely place for me to vacation. From my mother's reaction ('why there?') it was clear that this not be the obvious choice for someone of Jewish descent. I don't expect you non-Jews to get that, but if you are Jewish, you will. Jews and haggis don't really hang out together.  In recent years I feel like there's more of an interest in this gorgeous country because of the show the "Outlander". And trust me, it won't disappoint. I won't say you'll travel through time and marry a sexy Scottish warrior,  but still- it's lovely. Very, very lovely. 

So anyway, I have a long and storied history with said country. I visited for the first time early on in my career when I had absolutely not a single clue of what I was doing on a terribly massive photoshoot. Think scouting locations in real time, driving around Scotland with an art director full of pills, and seeking solace in the arms of our winnebago driver. Yes. That was the first time. It was so amazing I had to go back. All that wackiness aside- I had one of my only past life experiences in the Highlands and somehow knew my way around. 

Second time found me there for work once again, when I convinced my old boss to send me there to check out the music scene there. That's back when I worked in trends. I had a major time, lovely people, fell madly in love with Glasgow. Also the heyday of Irvine Welsh and I remember trying very hard to get through his books, even though I spoke not a lick of Glaswegian. 

This time I went with my hubs and we had the loveliest time. A bit of time in Edinburgh (beautiful city, not quite for me though), two nights in Glasgow (scrappy, salty, and very much for me), and then on to the Highlands (obsessed) and up to Skye (even more obsessed).

Scotland may be an unlikely trip for many, but it is really an exceptional experience. It's one of the few countries where I prefer being out in the country vs. the city. Even though I love cities, there is something about being out on Skye that is just so stunning and awe inspiring. Around every turn on the road is something to take your breath away- craggy cliffs, gorgeous dappled water, sheep outnumbering people and of course, those epic, low clouded Scottish skies. Fantastic. Plus copious pints. And many wee drams of single malt. It's really all that.

Here's five ways to know if you'd like a Scottish sojourn:

1. You're craving something unpretentious. Scots are simply the nicest, loveliest people around. And they have no snobbery or attitude whatsoever. It's the best. Oh and dress codes are really nonexistent. Where whatever you want. Fashion and Scotland are not really a thing. And that's wonderful. I wore my hole infested favorite navy v neck sweater for days on end and felt perfect. Oh and ladies- there is no shopping. Nothing major, anyway. You may end up with a cashmere sweater, but I have to say- refreshing to go somewhere that's not so retail focused. Tons of little souvenirs, but nothing to truly buy. That's a gift in itself. More time to enjoy the scenery and the local color. 

2. You like "weather". Listen- there's nothing better than laying on a beach, particularly when you are stressed as f in city life. But to go somewhere where at any moment it could go from stormy to sunny it's just divine. Plus temps in the 60s. In June. Perfect for me. I love a chill in the air. And big, fluffy low hanging clouds.

3. You dig history. I'm very much my father's daughter in that I adore history. And Scotland's history is fascinating. From medieval castles to epic Highland battlefields to sacred old lochs. Scotland has it all going on. And I love that. Oh and there are many moments on Skye where you feel like you are either on another planet or have traveled through time to somewhere completely ancient. it's surreal in the best of ways. 

4. You love a road trip. I love a road trip. Always have, and fortunately, so does David. We rented a car in Edinburgh and literally drove our way through the country. There are many one lane roads that feel a bit hairy, particularly since you're driving on the other side of the road than you do in the States. I had the luck of being passenger on what's typically the driver's side and a couple times I needed to shut my eyes. But it was fun and so beautiful. So many lovely towns to stop in. So little time. Oh and bonus- UK radio. BBC Radio 6 is so my jam. I found myself writing down everything new they played and singing along to Blur and other classics. Excellent.

5. You appreciate nature, but maybe you're not outdoorsy. OK- if you are outdoorsy, you are going to LOVE it in Scotland. Hiking, biking, all of that. But if you're more the type to just do a walkabout and breath the fresh air and pet a baby lamb, then jackpot- you can do that too. Guess which one I prefer? ;)

There are so many other reasons to love Scotland- it's loaded with charm and it's romantic as could be. It's full of great museums and there are dogs in every pub.  The pubs themselves are wonderful and full of local color, and of course, pints and single malts abound. There's a resonating quirk that makes my heart sing. People there are eccentric and interesting and as mentioned, extremely kind. Oh and huge bonus- the whole country is green as green gets. And green is my happy color so for me, there's nothing better.

Also, there are a million ways to slice it up in terms of where to stay- we did everything from a beautiful boutique hotel in Edinburgh to a wacky pod hotel in Glasgow (the bed was heaven) to a small in in a small town in the Highlands to the most lovely little bothy Air BnB complete with a pet lamb which I named Lambo. I love a place where you can experience different lodging- it makes it so much fun to explore. You can go super high end in Scotland or go way more dialed down. Feel like there's room for everyone and that's what makes it such a great choice. 

Anyway, if you want my full itinerary happy to send it to you. Just write to me at sherimaven@gmail.com and I'll put it together for you. Oh and I guarantee I'll go back again. Because there's simply something about Scotland. Cause that's what's up this tartan of a Wednesday in the 212. Yours, in Speyside single malts and excellent adventures. XO