Emily’s Essentials: Almost Spring 2014


Hellllloooooooo friends! Happy almost spring.

Have you ever heard of a staycation? That’s right: a vacation where you stay put. As in, at home. It’s the kind of thing eternal optimists tell you to do at the end of a really grueling week, when you are a) desperately in need of a break, and/or b) can’t justify the expense of a 48-hour trip out of town. So you say to yourself, “Screw the tax prep, bill-paying, and grocery shopping I was supposed to do this weekend—I’m going to treat my house like it’s a hotel and luxuriate.” Or you do what I did, because my cats drive me nuts and I’m sick of my apartment: go halfsies with a special someone and rent a room at an actual hotel.

“Packing” for a staycation seems inherently contradictory, but hear me out. The items I brought to the Standard (High Line) after New York Fashion Week were few, but true to my everyday life. My entire beauty arsenal as of late can pretty neatly fit into one oversized, unlabeled canvas pouch, ready to go with me anywhere. In my constant, ever-evolving quest to get to the core of beauty—nay, the core of life!—here’s what’s making the cut:

Has there ever been a more perfect moisturizer than Embryolisse? I think not. Time after time I see this in someone’s cabinet during a Top Shelf shoot, hear that’s it’s the best, and then I’m on it again. Are there more science-y moisturizers out there? Sure. Will this one stop aging in its tracks? No. But it feels. so. good. Same with Homeoplasmine: give me a French nipple cream to put on my lips any day of the week. It’s amazing. So simple. What is decidedly not simple is the Biologique Recherche skincare line. It can only be procured via a handful of evangelical aestheticians or 'approved' e-tailers, and is currently spreading across a certain sect of downtown ladies (e.g., Ashley Olsen) like wildfire. NYC facialist Aida Bacaj practically gives sermons on the stuff, and during a recent visit, she told me to put down my foaming cleanser and pick up Lait VIP02. So I’m on those samples, and so far, so good. I’m also trying out La Mer’s new Lifting Serum, because I’ll be 29 soon, and “lifting” is starting to have a certain ring to it.

Bioderma Créaline still can’t be beat for gently removing eye makeup, and as for cotton pads, I splurge on fancy ones from Clé de Peau or Koh Gen Do. It’s like the difference between Charmin Ultra Soft and generic.

As for things you spray, there are two that I’m currently enjoying: a pure, organic rose water facial mist from a friend-of-a-friend’s line in Paris called Doux Me, and Weleda’s Sage deodorant. It’s the only natural deodorant I’ve tried that actually works.

And teeth! Did you know that Darphin makes toothpaste? They do, and it’s in the chicest toothpaste tube you’ve ever seen. This is very luxurious toothpaste.

In the makeup department, I use three things on most days: Anastasia clear brow gel, black mascara (I’m currently enjoying the natural look of Clinique’s Naturally Glossy), and a medley of warm taupe-ish eye shadows from Revlon’s creamy, dreamy “Skinlights” Illuminance Crème Shadow palette (thanks, Jessica Diehl!). I apply a couple of the shades at random with my pinky finger along the upper and lower lash line, and I like it best at the end of a long day, when it has settled into the creases and looks sort of…melted. No joke.

Where I skimp on makeup I make up for in hair care, though, due to the blond. Having platinum hair is like wearing a white silk blouse every day of the week, dry-cleaning it every other, and trying not to spill anything on it in between. No hair commitment I’ve made in all my years—not the questionable-in-retrospect Leonardo DiCaprio-inspired mop; not the undercut—has required so much continual effort. But I love it. L-O-V-E. This is because Aura Friedman is a genius colorist, and Christophe Robin makes products. Beautiful, beautiful products, most notably the new Cleansing Purifying Scrub with Sea Salt, which is an enigma of a shampoo-slash-treatment that I use all the time. I stick with Davines Silver Alchemic conditioner to keep my blond icy-grey, and on Living Proof’s Targeted Repair Cream and Nexxus Color Assure Glossing Tonic for styling pre-blow-dry. Post-blow—to smooth the inevitable sad, broken hairs that are a casualty of even the most careful bleach job—I rely on Shu Uemura Essence Absolue Nourishing Oil-In-Cream. Now, the philosophical question I’ve been pondering has to do with perception. Newly flaxen Aymeline Valade told me backstage a couple of weeks ago, “People are friendlier to me now.” Could this be?! TBD.

—Emily Weiss

Emily Weiss, wearing a Theyskens Theory slipdress and T by Alexander Wang bra, photographed by Candice Lake in New York on February 15, 2013; photos 2-4 by Emily Weiss.

Let’s Talk About It! JOIN IN
  • Olivia

    you look beautiful! Looking up into these products.. Thanks for the tips!

  • Kristien

    Love the update on your current favorites! May I ask a somewhat unrelated question: What do you do, Emily, to keep yourself in such great shape? Without sounding creepy, you looked fabulous in your Instagram post the other day with the CK undies. Seriously, what's your secret?

    • http://madamecouture.blogspot.com/ Emma Hager

      I agree! I was actually going to ask what your ab routine was.....

  • Jenny

    I dunno if it's just me, but I used Embryolisse and it did nothing for me. Ditto with Biologique Recherche - I used the lotion P50 and one of their creams, and it didn't do much for my skin. Both these brands use mineral oil in their products, and while the jury is still out on whether mineral oil is good or bad, personally I've never seen mineral oil based products work wonders on my skin, so I steer clear. I have combination skin and I feel mineral oil based products are best avoided by people like me. It makes my skin greasy and heavy. Just no.

    • Kristien

      Mind sharing what products have worked for you?

    • cat

      Really? I've never tried Embryolisse but the P50 cleared up my 5-year battle with (bad but not cystic) acne in less than a week. and it stayed clear. I wonder why, as I also have combination skin, very picky and sensitive, too. did you use the modified or the 1970 version?

      • Danielle

        Ah P50 is wonderful if you get the original formula. I believe it has a harsh chemical that causes the "tingly" burn feeling you get when you use it. If you used the other sensitive versions, it will be without this special chemical and that might be why it isn't as wonderful as EVERYONE claims it to be :). I know in Europe the original formulation is banned. I recently tried to get away from using P50 due to the possibly harmful ingredient and the price, and started to use Pixi Glow. It isn’t as harsh, but is a liquid exfoliation like P50. Although switching to Pixi Glow I have noticed a big difference in my skin; the glow is sadly gone. I believe P50 made a big difference daily, I might go back to it. I recently started to try other products such as Lancome which contains mineral oil and I am seriously asking myself why I bothered. Mineral Oil just sits on the skin vs. sinking in, but they usually have rave reviews. Try Dermalogica products such as their Active Moist which is their lightweight cream. I use it in summer and it has seriously helped my skin and I believe it's oil free.

        If you haven't already, try the original P50 formula. It is marvelous and it will help other products do their job more effectively and help with acne ect.

        • Nina R.

          The ingredient you are referring to is phenol, an acid that is used in medical grade peels in higher concentrations. Love that P50 - it's pretty awesome. As far as mineral oil, it is true that it does't "sink in" but that is exactly why it works to form a barrier which seals moisture into your skin. Mineral oil is hypo-allergenic and noncomedogenic but people don't like it because of it's petroleum origins. But hey - all that stuff came from the dinosaurs! (I didn't say it was non-allergenic, nothing is, but it is less allergy/reaction producing that many things out there.)

          • ITGLacey

            Dinosaur petroleum reference? MARRY ME

  • Laura

    How many cats?!

  • k80

    Ahhh your slicked-back icy grey hair makes me want to chop off my nicely-growing-out-midlength. Must resist. (I don't think my hair is as thick/abundant as yours). But you look amazing!

  • http://lavenderandtea.com/ Lavender & Tea

    So excited to see a new Emily's Essentials post! Never letting go of my Bioderma.

  • Sophie

    It is weird, and perhaps sad, but yes, I've been platinum for two years (from dark brown, I'm half east Asian), I do think on the whole, people are friendlier and kinder to me. I also get asked for ID 400% more (I'm 35).

    • Molly

      Do you dye your hair yourself?

  • http://genuineglow.com/ Lilly

    You look fab!

  • http://lazygirlglam.com Thu

    lavanila makes an incredible natural deodorant!

    • Adrienne Angelos

      I had hear that and gave it a good try but it didn't do squat for me unfortunately :( I do love the beachy exotic smell of the coconut one though, almost worth wearing because of the deodorizing properties but they're definitely not antiperspirants

      • http://lazygirlglam.com Thu

        I know! I had to get use to my clothes being a little sweaty for a couple of days but after I got over that hump I really liked it! I use lavender vanilla, I'm obsessed!!! I have to re-apply before the gym but don't smell :)

  • maiastras

    There is just something special about the way Emily writes and communicates. She makes beauty engaging and interesting, rather than cumbersome or prescriptive. She also looks fabulous. Thank you for the treat!

  • http://www.themistymom.com/ Shari

    I will have a field day researching all these products you mentioned :) Particularly the skincare ones as you have glowing skin! AND WHAT LIFTING!? You dont need any lifting at all!

  • Emily Doyle

    Love the comparison of your platinum locks to a white silk shirt - perfect and hilarious!

  • Amanda

    guilty of using both generic brand cotton pads and toilet paper here

  • Alaska

    All hail embryolisse!! Before I started using it I was tired of always hearing about it everywhere, but it has made my skin soooo much smoother and softer than when I was using LRP's Toleraine Riche. It's also perfect for smudging eyeliner and glossing lids.
    Love the outfit too!! So cute

  • Kasia

    Emily - I hope you don't mind - but I miss your brunette ways! You looked fierce as brunette.

  • Katie

    The weleda sage unfortunately did not work for me…I however LOVE soapwalla's deodorant creme…works like a charm!

  • nicole

    agreed! weleda does NOT work as a deodorant!

  • Addison Cain

    My personal fave is Primal Pit Paste. It's amazing.

  • http://www.getmadcute.com/ MADCUTE

    You woke up like this!

  • bijoux

    go for $9.50 Shiseido cottons. quality.

  • bijoux

    I just got this Nexxus glossing tonic on an absolute whim because I thought I must need something so pretty. It works! And my hair couldn't be more different from yours-

  • Anna Maria V Turcato

    Compliments: you look great!!!
    I love Weleda sage deodorant aswell: in summer I use it all over just to refresh myself :) it smells sooooo gooood!!!!

  • lolauren

    I use the Weleda Citrus deodorant and it works okay-ish. I bought it this summer when it was crazy hot and humid and it didn't cut it. Now that its far cooler this winter I've been using it and its been fine as long as I'm not getting too sweaty. I do like having a nice, natural alternative for those days I know I won't need the heavy duty stuff.

  • http://www.businessmodelmag.com/mxm/ Models By Models

    How do you achieve the wet hair look? It look so gorgeous and not at all greasy or sloppy.

  • http://fashionfollower.com/ The Dedicated Follower of Fash

    I've been white platinum for about a month now and it's true about the "friendlier" thing. Also true is that I've had to get used to a completely different hair care routine (I had no idea how much water my hair would hold onto after washing...takes forever to dry). But it's so worth it!

  • http://bookofpretty.wordpress.com/ book of pretty

    I adore that Revlon palette, and you've just reminded me that I need to buy a new one! It's like foundation, contour, and color for your eyelids! Best collection of nude/neutral cream eye shadows around.

  • Sasha

    Aesop pump spray deodorant is the only non aluminum deodorant that has ever worked for me. It still has alcohol in it but better than heavy metals!

  • FanGirl

    every time i see a new pic of you, i start craving platinum again!!

  • Megan

    Just FYI, Weleda's sage deodorant has a 7 out of 10 rating for toxicity on the website http://www.ewg.org/skindeep/ that measures the different chemicals in make up and skin care products. So it isn't necessarily better than any other mainstream deodorant. Try Almay clear gel fragrance free. It has a rating of "1" and it works!

  • lin

    Emily is hot. Natural beauty.

  • http://rorschachcoffee.typepad.com/ Paulette

    You look so pretty!

  • Julia

    What styling product do you use to keep your hair in place? I am trying to grow out my bangs and swipe them back, and I hate the kind of wet or unnatural look that comes with hair waxes or even hair spray. Your hair looks great that way.

  • Mariah

    When are you going to do another Emily's Essentials?! I love them!


Embryolisse Lait-Crème Concentrè
Biologique Recherche
The Biologique Recherche Line
Biologique Recherche
Biologique Recherche Lait VIP02
La Mer
La Mer Lifting Serum
Bioderma Crealine Travel Size
Cle de Peau Beaute
Cle de Peau Cotton Pads
Koh Gen Do
Koh Gen Do Organic Cotton Pads
Doux Me
Doux Me
Weleda Sage Deodorant Spray
Darphin Toothpaste
Anastasia Beverly Hills
Anastasia Beverly Hills Clear Brow Gel
Clinique Naturally Glossy Mascara
Revlon Illuminance
Revlon Illuminance Creme Shadow 4 Shades Not Just Nudes
Christophe Robin
Christophe Robin Cleansing Purifying Scrub with Sea Salt
Davines Alchemic Conditioner Silver
Living Proof
Living Proof Restore Targeted Repair Hair Cream
Nexxus Color Assure Glossing Tonic
Shu Uemura
Shu Uemura Essence Absolue Oil-in-Cream Nourishing Oil-In-Cream