Adventures in Bespoke Skincare (+ All Your Questions!).

If you follow along on Instagram then you know that two weeks ago I got to do something really cool – I visited Skinceuticals, where I received a skin consultation and CUSTOM D.O.S.E. serum. I got a lot of questions from you guys about this (and answer them at the end of the post). It was pretty cool. I’m obviously (duh) very big into skincare but my routine has always been a product of trial and error – trying lots and lots of products until I’ve figured out what’s worked for me.

The idea of having a serum created just for me (and my own skincare needs + concerns) really appealed to both my vanity and my nerdiness. When developing this service, Skinceuticals looked at over 250 skin types. There are 24 individual ingredients (formulated at different percentages) and over 2,000 possible combinations! I loved the idea of receiving my own perfect product but also loved learning about all of the different ingredients and why certain combinations are so potent. I sat down with Dr. Kavita Mariwalla from Mariwalla Dermatology for a consultation. She evaluated my skin using Skinceuticals’ patented diagnostic tool and I answered a handful of questions. From there, Dr. Mariwalla made the necessary selections and and from there, the machine delivered a made to measure serum, just for me!

My formula contained…

  1. LI+M – licorice root and mulberry extract, which help to promote even skin tone and minimize discoloration.
  2. PXN – Proxylane, which helps to support the skin’s matrix and improve firmness.
  3. RET – Retional (.1% but you can go up to .5%) helps to improve uneven skin tone, promote cell turnover, and reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.

Lastly, she used an emulsion base which is ideal for dry skin types as it contains conditioning agents and has a light, milky texture. (For oilier types they offer a hydroalcoholic base which is oil-free and has a lighter, more viscous texture!)

I have been using the serum every night now for about two weeks. I am really impressed so far. The most immediate thing I noticed was waking up with more even skin. I noticed a subtle difference after the first night. With time my skin has gotten firmer and smoother and I swear the fine lines in my forehead are gone. But it’s only been two weeks… I’m excited to see what changes I notice in the coming weeks and will definitely keep you guys update on Instagram stories.

I highly recommend having your own CUSTOM D.O.S.E. treatment , especially if you’re starting to have age-related skin concerns. I’m really happy with mine so far.

YOUR QUESTIONS ABOUT D.O.S.E, ANSWERED!

I got so many DM’s about the serum/the session that I thought I would do a mini Q&A with the most common questions I got asked.

HOW DOES THIS COMPARE TO THE C E FERULIC? A REPLACEMENT?

A girl after my own heart! Skinceuticals C E Ferulic is one of my favorites too – it’s one of the best vitamin C treatments I’ve tried.  This does not replace C E Ferulic as there are no antioxidants in the Custom D.O.S.E serum. You can continue using it in your routine in addition to the serum.

WHERE DO YOU GET IT? DO YOU HAVE TO DO AN IN-PERSON SKIN ANALYSIS?

The Custom D.O.S.E. treatment is definitely an in person thing. As the serum is made just for you, it’s important to have a dermatologist on hand to give you a consultation and make any adjustments to the formula to ensure you are getting the most perfect combination of ingredients. As mentioned above, my consult was with Dr. Mariwalla from Mariwalla Dermatology (she’s amazing and came into the city for the day for the event, if you are on Long Island GO SEE HER!) You can find a professional who has the machine available at their practice here. It’s a quick process – the evaluation takes about 5 minutes and then it takes the machine about 5 minutes to create the serum.

The good thing is that a label with your information and formula ID will be printed and applied to the bottle for easy replenishment. When you run out, your derm can make adjustments to it, or just send you a new bottle.

HOW DO THEY SELECT WHAT GOES INTO IT?

You answer a set of questions (on the tablet) and the dermatologist adjusts based on your skin concerns. From there, the machine’s algorithm develops (and mixes!) your perfect serum.

WHAT % RETINOL IS IN THE SERUM?

As this was my first foray into a professional-grade retinol I had .1%, but they go up to .5%!

HOW DID YOUR SKIN REACT TO THE RETINOL?

It’s reacting really well to it. I use it very night before bed. As it’s pretty intense, I massage it in and then put a really rich oil or night cream on over it to seal it in but also hydrate my skin. I have heard of people experiencing peeling or skin purging when they add retinol to their routines, but my skin has been fine. The only side effect I’ve noticed has been some tightness so I’ve really upped my moisturizing game.

Retinol moves any bad stuff (blackheads, whiteheads, pimples) up from under the skin at a faster rate, so a purge period (if you have acne prone skin) can last up to 4-6 weeks. I think I was lucky in that I don’t break out very often, but I’m told that if this happens, stick with it – the results are worth it and then the bad stuff is out!

WHEN DO YOU USE IT IN YOUR PRODUCT LINEUP AND WHAT OTHER PRODUCTS DO YOU USE WITH IT?

The serum has been the focal point of my skincare routine since starting to test it. Since it’s more intense, I keep the rest of my routine very gentle. At night I will wash my face with a gentle, creamy cleanser. After that I will apply toner if my skin feels like it needs it (I don’t always, but sometimes I do!). Then on goes the serum. I pat it on (all the way down to my décolletage) and then leave it a minute or two. Then I apply a thick (but gentle) night cream or oil.

In the morning I just splash with water, apply facial essence, and then more moisturizer and SPF! (I always say that if you have an elaborate bedtime routine you don’t have to do much in the morning… it’s not as though you were getting dirty in your sleep!

HOW MUCH DOES IT COST?

It depends upon where you go  – I was told $195!

 

Created in partnership with Skinceuticals. Photography by Carter Fish

An Affordable Floral Dress for Fall.

Ella Moon Dress
dress // bag // heels

How was your weekend? Mine was so nice. I had a fun party on Friday night, saw my sister and brother in law on Sunday, had dinner with Merritt, and in between that was just pretty chill. (I watched the entire series of Sharp Objects – the ENDING WAS NUTS, let’s please discuss!) Since I traveled so much this summer I’ve been making a point to leave weekends a bit open and not make very many plans. It felt so luxurious waking up on Saturday without a thing on my calendar!

I love a good maxi dress this time of year but they can add up! It’s rare to find one of decent quality for under $100. Enter this little number from Ella Moon. Love. I unbuttoned a few of the top & bottom buttons to make it a little less prim. Perfection! I bought it on Amazon. We’ve talked about buying clothes on Amazon (it’s intimidating) but I’ve been having a lot of luck there lately. (You’re probably so sick of it by now but I also bought my pearl bag there – the quality is fantastic and it’s a dead ringer for the $700 Shrimps version.) Later this week I’ll have another “best of” roundup with lots of cute fashion finds (and these glass straws – total sidebar but I drink everything out of them – they’re amazing and definitely the best $8 I’ve spent!)

The other thing to briefly discuss are these heels. They RULE. So comfy and I love the tortoise block heel. I included them in my fall shoe guide but I’m really into this designer; all of the styles are gorgeous (and Meghan Markle is a fan too, so there’s that!)

Outfit Details: Ella Moon Dress // Miuco Pearl Bag (obsessed) // Lele Sadoughi Earrings // Sarah Flint Heels // Karen Walker Sunglasses

Ella Moon Dress - The Stripe

Ella Moon Dress - The Stripe Lele Sadoughi Earrings Ella Moon Dress - The Stripe Outfit Details: Ella Moon Dress // Miuco Pearl Bag (obsessed) // Lele Sadoughi Earrings // Sarah Flint Heels // Karen Walker Sunglasses Outfit Details: Ella Moon Dress // Miuco Pearl Bag (obsessed) // Lele Sadoughi Earrings // Sarah Flint Heels // Karen Walker Sunglasses Miuco Pearl Bag

Photography by Carter Fish.

Weekend Reading | 10.13.18

 weekend's links

happy weekend! I had a fancy wedding celebration last night and now I have a low key couple days planned – a belated birthday brunch with my sister and her husband, maybe a movie or two, lots of yoga. I was thinking it could be nice to get up to Central Park and The Met but I’m not sure leaving the city and going up that way is in the cards for me. We shall see! Whatever you are up to, I hope it’s fab…

Enjoy this weekend’s links! XO

From my mom – essential oils that improve immunity!

A reader sent me a link to this shirt and I obviously ordered it immediately. SO me! (Thanks, Caitlin!)

Dating and NOT texting – a compelling argument for it. Personally, I really like this idea.

One of my favorite productivity hacks.

Very into this cozy navy mock neck.  Must stop buying sweaters!

How to write a great cover letter. (Hint: they’re still important!!)

Have been on the hunt for a stylish black coat. Ordered this one and will report back!

Love these under $50 gift ideas.

Really love Cup of Jo’s collab with Clare V.

Probably need this velvet wrap dress in my favorite color.

Loved seeing Hitha’s in flight travel beauty routine. These are so important; airplane air is the worst!

This sweater looks so cozy andwould be perfect with leggings/skinny jeans.

Really liked Carly’s list of the best apps. (Also, I love Headspace too!)

Can’t sleep? Doctor approved sleep advice.

Love this cozy cobalt sweater!

Do this workout routine anywhere!

Succcch a cute date night dress and it’s only $68!

Three questions to change your money mindset.

How to give your face a fall detox.

Loving these Gucci-esque white loafers.

A cute and very affordable (under $2) new brand. Gonna need to try this.

A chic suede top!

How to add bounce to fine hair.

The best bags from fashion week.

Free People does it again. Love this cozy sweater!

Loved seeing my friend Francesco on Coveteur.

Get the resin earring trend for under $10.

A smart new service for buying designer bags.

Is it a dress? Is it a top? LOVE this emerald green look on Jenn.

The perfect (really well-priced) slouchy blazer, in a ton of colors. (I ordered the brown). Can’t believe it’s under $70.

Jacey has me inspired to up my luggage game.  That hat box! (Also loved her Paris vlog!)

Obsessed with the tortoise handle on this bag! (Also: preordered these classic heels.)

The Coolest Thing in My Apartment Right Now..

Grace Atwood and Depict

When it comes to my home, once I am done decorating, it stays that way. I might change things up a little bit with fresh bedding, a new accent piece (like a pillow or ottoman). Or maybe a new piece of art. But once I’m done, I’m done. I don’t like a lot of change, and I tend to really invest in my home – furniture and art are expensive. That can leave things feeling a little bit stale though.

Depict

Enter Depict. My Depict frame is the coolest thing in my apartment right now. When the brand reached out to inquire about a partnership, I was immediately really excited about it. Depict is a smart frame. It’s 49″, with a 4K LCD screen and looks a bit like a flat screen TV but what it actually is is essentially like a Kindle for art – it’s powered by an app on your iPhone, letting you constantly switch up your art. The app is loaded with museum quality fine art and photography, allowing you to display whatever your heart fancies.

Grace Atwood and Depict

I love this idea so much as it allows you to completely change the look of your space without actually changing much. Just as you’d switch up the playlist depending on your mood (or who you’re having over), you can switch up your art! You’ll never get bored,, and it’s just really fun to be able to switch things up. (It also feels a little Jetsons-y… it’s from the future!)

Having family over for brunch?

Maybe put on an impressionist painting. (I’m partial to A Sunday on La Grande Jatte by Georges Seurat, or Van Gogh’s Irises or Wheat Fields). Having a party? Maybe go with a more modern photograph or even a neon sign (yes, you can even display a neon sign which is so cool). There are even video pieces. Think slow moving photos that almost take on a liquid quality.

Another cool feature is that you can also make playlists (choosing how long to switch up the art – every 5 min, 10 min, and so on and so forth). It’s so cool and while I’ve only had it for a couple weeks now, it’s become the thing I get asked about most in my apartment.

Depict - The Stripe Depict - The Stripe Partnership with Depict - The Stripe Partnership with Depict - The Stripe Depict - The Stripe

photography by Carter Fish; created in partnership with Depict.

A {Hands-Free] Girls Weekend in Southampton!

Last weekend was the absolute best. My friend Gretchen (who makes the best belt bags) invited a group of us out to her beautiful home in Southampton. Honestly, we did all of the things. We went apple picking and picked sunflowers! We went to Wolffer for a little bit of wine tasting. Also, we topped it off with a fun birthday dinner (chocolate cake!!) at St. Ambroeus. It was the most fun.

While technically this was a work trip to learn more about Gretchen’s bags (hence the “hands free” element – Gretchen is all about empowering women with chic belt + holster bags that you don’t have to worry about fussing over). It felt more like a girls’ trip as it was just a fun group of good friends all hanging out. I have known Gretchen a while now and was already a fan. But I really  just love it when work and friends line up like that.

I’m so lucky to have made so many great friends through blogging. These girls are some of them and this trip was one of those moments where you’re just like, “Wow, I have the best job in the world!” I didn’t post very much of this trip to Instagram stories (we were all just enjoying being hands-free from both our bags and our phones). But Gretchen had a photographer on hand to help document the trip which made this little trip diary possible!

Outfit Details (Look #1- Apple Picking): Anine Bing Blazer // Good American Jeans // Cami New York Camisole // Gucci Belt // Krewe Sunglasses // Hart Hagerty Necklace // Sarah Flint Emma Slingbacks // GG Maull Belt Bag (c/o)

gg maull apple picking riding bikes in southampton

The crew:

Krystal, creator of This Time Tomorrow, Gretchen, Alex (one of my very best friends, owner of Le Brain, a boutique marketing/PR/events agency), and Blair, creator of Atlantic-Pacific. (Missing in action is our friend Mary of Memorandum!)

The crew: Krystal, creator of This Time Tomorrow, Gretchen, Alex (one of my very best friends, owner of Le Brain, a boutique marketing/PR/events agency), and Blair, creator of Atlantic-Pacific. (Missing in action is our friend Mary of Memorandum!)

This car was definitely amazing to drive around in and a little fun fact for you: it was a prize for Mary Kay representatives, way back in the day!

This car was definitely amazing to drive around in. A little fun fact for you: it was a prize for Mary Kay representatives, way back in the day!

Mary, Gretchen, and I - en route to wine tasting!

Mary, Gretchen, and I – en route to wine tasting!

Girl's Weekend in Southampton A fun dinner at St. Ambroeus!

A fun dinner at St. Ambroeus!

I am not positive but I have a feeling that Blair is showing us selects from her new clothing line in the photo above. I could be making that up, though…

bday cake riding bikes in southampton

The next day we were up and at ’em (sort of – we were moving a little bit slowly after wine + birthday cake!). We rode bikes to The Golden Pear (my favorite) in Southampton.

Outfit Details (Look #2- Bike Riding): Vince Sweater // Re/Done Jeans // J.Crew Belt // Gucci Jordaan Loafers // GG Maull Belt Bag (c/o)

riding bikes in southampton riding bikes in southampton

Thanks to Gretchen! GG Maull for an amazing little trip and making my birthday WEEK so special!

Photography by Taryn Anderson.