A Night of Hidden Gems: Complex Magazine and Chevrolet Help Us Explore Chicago

Complex Magazine is always at the forefront of social media trends. One look at their Twitter or Instagram and you automatically know who they are and what they are about. When the magazine was founded in 2002, they were way ahead of the game and the only outlet of its kind. Last week, Sarah and I spent the day with Chevrolet at the Chicago Auto Show and fell in love with the brand, which is creating cutting edge technology in every single vehicle produced. Hello WiFi hotspot and On Star in every car.

Complex joined forces with Chevrolet this past Saturday to put the brand new Chevy Trax into the hands of 20 people in Chicago. Luckily, I was one of them and dragged SSC PR girl Sarah and Marc Katz along for the ride. We were sent on a night to explore “hidden gems” throughout Chicago. Complex created 20 unique itineraries, so no two were the same. We started off our night by picking up our car at The James hotel, and off we went.

We had three stops. The first was The Empty Bottle, an underground punk bar/music venue. They happened to be throwing a block party that night, so we spent a few hours drinking cold brews in the mud before wandering inside. Did we look a little out of place in our six inch heels and leather jackets? Absolutely. Did we mind? Not at all. Inside, we found bad ass decor and intense games of pool happening.

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For our second stop, we went to a magical place called Sprout Home. The owner took us through how to build the cutest little terrariums.The whole store is wall to wall plants and you cannot help but smile as soon as you step foot inside. I chose a colorful fern with moss and started planting.

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Our third and final stop of the night was dinner and drinks at Fulton Market Kitchen. Right off the bat, we were very impressed simply with the insane decor. Walls are covered in graffiti murals, sculptures, and unique paintings. The FMK website boasts that it is “the intersection between art and culture,” and I must agree. I would highly recommend my other car is the batmobile, a sweet drink consisting of Spanish pear cider and brandy with notes of citrus.

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The night wrapped up a little bit before midnight, and we wound up at Soho House listening to old school hip-hop and sipping on cocktails.

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Content sponsored by the Hidden Gems campaign.

Foreign Skincare Takes Off In The US

Photo: R29

Photo: R29

Skincare overseas, for example Korea and Japan, is serious business. It is a daily essential that involves many, many steps and is quite exhaustive. Yet, in the US, we are still trying to figure out what the wonder is behind Korean skincare. Beauty blogger Coco Park recently discovered Korean beauty care in her Korean-American boyfriends parents bathroom, and decided to check it out for herself. She went from using only a few products a day…to 17. On her blog, she says that she saw an immense difference in just three weeks, and her red spots and pores have essentially disappeared.

When you think about it, the invasion of Korean beauty products started a while ago. More specifically, in 2011 when companies started introducing the originally based Korean BB cream. BB cream is said to be an all in one product that will take care of the skin. Soon, American companies started producing their own versions, and we have BB creams, CC creams, and so on. As it turns out, this was just the Americanized version of Korean skincare because in the US, we like to keep things simple. In reality, we should also be scrubbing, moisturizing, cleansing, and treating.

Now that the beauty obsessed in the US are starting to reap the benefits of foreign beauty traditions, other interesting new treatments are starting to pop up. Two weeks ago, I got my monthly facial. I was surprised in my sleepy state of mind when something ice cold rolled around my face…under my eyes, down my nose, on my neck…it never seemed to stop. While reading Refinery29 this morning, I discovered that it was an ice roller. Essentially, this is a fancy substitute for throwing some spoons in the freezer. The ice roller can swiftly clean up the look of tired eyes, redness, puffiness, and minor bruising. My first question is…where do I get my hands on one?

For more information on best Korean beauty products, I would check out:

A Beginner’s Guide To Korean Makeup

Soko Glam

Peach and Lily

Photo: R29

Photo: R29

 

Not Your Average Snowboot

With the first real snowfall of winter hitting Chicago hard the last few days, it left me with a style dilemma: to Ugg or not to Ugg? I haven’t worn Uggs in public in two years, but these last few days have tested my devotion to looking stylish top to bottom. The powdery white fluff left me pulling old favorites out of my closet; my beloved Nike duck boots, Tory Burch fur lined wedges, and beat up Air Force 1 sneakers. While I am often guilty of leaving my boots at coat check and swapping in heels, my tried and true options allow me to not worry about schlepping around more than I have to. Here are the best, stylish, boots out there right now that will allow you to get around without falling flat on your ass.

 

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1. Nokian, Warm Boot. 2. Sorel, Joan of Arctic Wedge Boot. 3. Nike, Air Force 1 Duckboot (Men’s Style.) 4. Aquatalie, Chance Boot. 5. Hunter, Original Shearling Boots. 6. IRO, Hannah Shearling flat Boot. 7. Alexander Wang, Anouch Chelsea Boot. 8. Nokian, Wedge Ankle Boot.

Where’d You Get Those?

2003 marked the year Where’d You Get Those? was released, detailing the sneaker culture of New York City from 1960 to 1987. Bobbito Garcia is well respected for many things, including bringing unknown, unsigned, hip-hop artists to light through his shows Stretch Armstrong and Bobbito Show (Jay-z, Nas, Busta Rhymes…etc.) Garcia chronicles 400 pairs of ground breaking sneakers that have come and gone, but remain classics.

The book is currently available again in a anniversary addition, that includes an updated forward and new sneakers.

You can pick it up through Amazon.

 

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Detroit Made

“Why not accept that manufacturing is gone from this country? Why not let the rust and weeds finish what they started? Why not just embrace the era of disposability? And why didn’t we buy a warmer coat before we moved here?”

These are the questions the team at Shinola ask themselves throughout the long winter. As more and more companies start to move out of the US, Shinola is opening more factories and stores within boundaries; specifically in Detroit and around Michigan. Shinola chose Detroit because they are both restoring beauty and history to something that was once vibrant; in one case, a watch company, and the other: a city.

Shinola started out as a shoe polish company in World War I and World War II, and slowly disappeared. In 2001, after being bought by another group of investors, Shinola decided to try again with luxury watches, leather goods, and now, bicycles that are all produced in the US. They bought a portion of an automotive factory and opened for business. I like Shinola as a company because they truly seem invested in their employees: training them with Swiss partner Ronda AG and giving them a chance to become great at something.

Shinola is one of the few watch makers based out of the US, and gets all of their leather for goods and watch straps from the Horween Leather Factory in Chicago, which is the oldest leather tannery in the US opened in 1905. Shinola recently opened their own leather factory in Detroit, and plans on starting to produce small leather goods through it by the end of the year.

I recently ordered a watch from Shinola, and was impressed by the quality of the watch and small personal touches. Every watch comes with a serial number, and a card with who made the watch. The watches come in beautiful wooden boxes, and really stand out from other companies.

You can check out Shinola on their website.

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Gift Guide: For The Man

 

mens gift guide1. Harry’s Shaving Kit. 2. Lexdray San Diego Pack. 3. Rap Coloring Book. 4. Mr + Muse. 5. Cube Clock. 6. Fools Gold Records IPhone Cases. 7. “My Other Shirt is an Alphet” T-shirt. 8. A Bathing Ape Cork Coasters. 9. Ali 6 Original Painting.

For The Beauty Obsessed: The Gift Guide

 

beauty gift guide

1. “The Little Black Box,” Dream Dry. 2. Rodin Body Oil. 3. Honey Mask, Fresh. 4. Kyril Lipstick, Tom Ford. 5. Santa’s Lip Scrub, Lush.

Five Things You Didn’t Know You Needed

 

 

5 things you didnt know you needed1. Mini Cranberry Bliss Tassel Garland, $25.00. 2. Popcorn Cross Body Bag, $42.00.  3. Break Up Text Paintings, price available upon request. 4. Vortex Pearl Ear Cuff, $28.00. 5. Lela Rose SS15 Water Color Print, $30.00.

The Skinny On Dark Circles And How To Fight Them

Photo: Robert Kneschke

Photo: Robert Kneschke

No matter what we seem to do, dark circles never seem to go away. We have all had the moment of looking in the mirror, and thinking “Holy crap…I look so tired.” One of the problems with having dark circles as a problem area, is that the skin is thinnest in the eye area and therefore harder to manipulate back to normal. The two largest problems with the eye area, are puffiness, and dark circles.

Puffiness

Puffy eyes can be caused by a whole host of things, some large, some small: a nasty sinus infection, crying your eyes out before bed, or simply eating a salty lunch. One of the best things you can do, is drink a lot of water throughout the day to flush out some of the build up.

Sleeping on your side of stomach can cause build up around the eyes. If you wake up with chronically puffy eyes, sleeping on your back may be a quick fix to perfect peepers.

Try not to rub your eyes throughout the day, which can cause the thin skin around the eyes to become inflamed and irritated. This breaks tiny blood vessels around the eye and causes discoloration.

How to fix it:

-Stick two spoons in the freezer. After a solid ten minutes, take them out and slather them in eye cream. Apply under eyes and watch them instantly de-puff.

-A cooling eye mask works just as well.

-Try a targeted eye mask for instant results. After applying eye pads, under eyes are left brighter, smoother, and perkier in minutes. The hydrating pads help to restore water where there may be done, causing puffiness. Plankton extract in these pads has an instant tightening effect.

-If you are a fan of salty meals, try snacking on bananas to balance out the affects of the sodium.

Dark Circles

While dark circles are usually attributed to a late night, they can be causes by much more, and sometimes hereditary. As we get older, dark circles are inevitable no matter how much sleep we get: the skin thins around our eyes, therefore showing more of the discoloration underneath. The elasticity in our eye area begins to lose mass, and shows the outline of the bone underneath, making it look hollow and dark.

Dark circles can take on make different tones, but one of the most common is blue. This is caused from blood pooling around the eyes, and will be most visible in the morning but become less perceptible throughout the day. Brown circles can also be a sign of this. Experts recommend using a soy or citrus bases brightening eye cream to combat this over a few weeks.

“You can fight the good fight on a daily basis by applying night cream. Products with hyaluronic acid will plump the area, hydrating the skin and pushing it up and away from the blood, whereas those containing retinoic acid will thicken the skin to conceal the darkness.” [The Stylelist.]

How to fix it:

-Make up. Choose a concealer that matches your skin tone. Make up artists will tell you to go a few shades lighter, but most of the time, it is not a good look.

-Try using a eye cream with caffeine, which will tighten and lift the eye area. quickly.

-A cold compress or cold spoons will always provide a quick fix.

Four steps to cover it up:

1. Prepare the skin with eye cream. This will bring moisture to the skin and keep it plump, therefore making it a tad bit easier to cover up the veins.

2. Apply your concealer. Choose a concealer with a yellowish undertone to counteract the blueish tinge around the eyes. Dot concealer around the eye area with a small make up brush.

3. Dab concealer. Dab your concealer to blend opposed to brushing it on. This helps to avoid further irritating the gentle skin around the eyes.

4. Apply a powder. Applying a powder to the concealer helps to set it into place. This will help hold the concealer from slipping into wrinkles or fine lines, and prevent shininess throughout the day.

 

 

 

 

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