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When it comes to eyeliner, I’m a real Goldilocks—this one’s too dry, that one’s too smudgy, this one doesn’t last long enough, that one’s irritating—you get the picture. For my money, I’m generally a Charlotte Tilbury Rock ’n‘ Kohl Eyeliner Pencil ($29) sort of person, and I’ve been very happy with that choice for the past handful of years.
Of course, that hasn’t stopped me from trying pretty much everything that hits the market, which brings me to my newest discovery: Hourglass’s new gel eyeliner. Folks, when I say this is wildly dreamy, I mean it. The texture is so incredibly soft it feels like a cloud. There’s no dragging on your skin, just soft, easy pigmentation. The colors are incredible. Plus, they blend nicely and work in the waterline. It’s a pencil, but instead of having to deal with a sharpener, you just twist up the base, which I love. If you’re looking for a subtle color that still brings definition to your eyes, I very much swear by Solstice, which is a perfect-for-summer bronze color, but the standard black is also quite excellent.
If you haven’t watched the first season of the peerless Hacks, I very much recommend you abandon this newsletter and treat yourself immediately. The pilot episode is nearly flawless (and also available to watch for free on HBO Max’s website right now). The show is beloved by critics—Jean Smart won an Emmy and a SAG for her performance, and Hacks won a number of awards across categories—and honestly, they got it right. Jean Smart is a triumph, the writing is brilliant, and when I say I laughed and cried, I actually mean it.
Oh no, I just realized I haven’t told you a word about the concept. Very brief version: A legendary Vegas comedian (Smart) whose star is dimming starts working with a young, arrogant, unproven comedy writer (Hannah Einbinder) to make her act more relevant. It’s dark and hilarious, and apparently, season two is even better, according to a TV showrunner friend of mine who has already seen the first few episodes. Just trust me on this one, please?
Back in 2013, a former colleague emailed me about a young hatmaker named Janessa Leone and told me I would love her pieces. Janessa came to the Who What Wear offices so I could see what she was making, and I fell in love immediately. There was no question that what she was doing was remarkable, that her taste was exquisite, and that her company would be a huge success. I have been wearing her pieces ever since. In fact, I have so many of them I haven’t bought a new hat in a minute, but then I saw my friend Meg Strachan—the founder and CEO of the incredible company Dorsey, which I wrote about here before she and I met!—wearing a super-chic straw hat on Instagram, and I immediately thought, I want.
Turns out the hat was one of Janessa’s creations, and I wasn’t the only one who wanted it. By the time I got to the website, it was already sold out. However! The site and store recently got a new shipment of this style—the Tinsley, which is basically an elevated bucket hat but with a taller crown that makes it more timeless and elegant—in both natural raffia and black. Is it expensive? Yes, but not for the quality, and honestly, I don’t think you’ll need another, and it’s UPF 50, which means it’s also excellent sun protection.
I’m not sure who turned me on to Emily Henry—Tyler McCall, I’m guessing it was you—but I’m so glad it happened. The New York Times best-selling author of Beach Read (honestly one of the best romantic novels I’ve read in ages) and People We Meet on Vacation is back with a new book that’s particularly lovely for my fellow book nerds, Book Lovers. Henry writes some of the best slow-burn chemistry situations and knows how to capture moments of longing like no other, and her latest book does both beautifully.
My only issue with it is my own fault: I read it too quickly, and now it’s over, and I’m sad. Don’t make my mistake, but do go out and buy it if you want a brief escape from real life.
Full confession: When it comes to bodycare, I’m not particularly discerning. It’s not a category I’ve felt passionate about, and I honestly tend to use pretty much whatever is around, without much thought or loyalty. There are a few brands I love—like Nécessaire, which is incredible but expensive, or Dr. Bronner’s, especially in Peppermint or Lavender—but I’ve been sort of indifferent otherwise.
I’m deeply adoring of entrepreneur Iskra Lawrence’s bodycare company Saltair, which launched earlier this year and makes really luxurious bodywash, lotion, and natural deodorant. The line uses buzzy skincare ingredients like niacinamide and retinoids in its products, has sustainable packaging, and honestly just smells like a dream. My favorite product thus far is the Exotic Pulp Body Wash because it’s formulated with passionfruit oil, which is simply divine, but there are loads of other delicious options, ranging from the woodsy Santal Bloom to fragrance-free.
Do you remember when Rihanna wore a showstopping bright-yellow cape with a huge train to the Met Gala in 2015? I sure do; it was a major moment, period, and a game changer for the acclaimed Chinese couturier Guo Pei, who made the look. (The cape took 20 months to create and weighs 55 pounds!)
Pei is the star of a new exhibition in San Francisco this summer, which features over 80 of the designer’s archival pieces. Though, sadly, the Rihanna cape situation will not be there. I’m desperate to go and beg you to DM me pictures if you get a chance to see it before I do. This is a truly unique exhibition featuring an extraordinary talent and definitely worth your time.