The Relationship Columnist Going Gray Expensively


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“Hey, it’s me, Carrie. Carrie Bradshaw. I’m a writer—I wrote a relationship column for The New York Star called "Sex and the City" for a long, long time (don’t ask how long), which I eventually turned into a book of essays. And I also did some freelancing for Vogue. They paid me $4 a word, and I spent all of them at Manolo. I like my money where I can see it! Most recently I’ve been podcasting, and honestly? I’m still warming up to that whole… thing. But my new publicist says podcasts are the daytime talk shows of the 2020s, and I had some extra time during the pandemic when all the good New York bars closed.

I’ve been living in New York since the ‘80s, and just like that, it’s been almost 40 years. If you measure a relationship’s success by years spent together, New York is my soulmate. When I first moved to New York and I was totally broke, sometimes I would buy Vogue instead of dinner—but a lot has changed since I first got here. First of all, you could get a whole year of Vogue for less than a salad at that Sweetgreen place. If you’re buying something in the meatpacking district that starts with an h, it’s probably Hermès. You can’t smoke indoors; Brooklyn actually is the new Manhattan; this past October, they turned the downtown Barneys into a Spirit Halloween, which is a whole other kind of ghosting I just can’t understand. But there are good changes, too, like how now, being single means you’re pretty, sexy, and taking your time deciding how you want your life to be and who you want to spend it with. On the other hand, some things are exactly the same. Everyone in New York is still looking for either a job, an apartment, or a boyfriend partner. Now that I have a big closet, I store skincare in the fridge. Beauty is fleeting, but a rent-controlled apartment overlooking the park is forever. And best of all, most of my oldest, dearest friends are still close by. We can’t live without the crowds or each other.

When I was younger, I got most of my beauty products when I went to visit Enid, my editor. There was always someone from the beauty desk with too many samples of La Mer to get through, and I happily accepted their hand-me-downs. My friend Samantha was really the beauty person out of our group. (She famously showed up to my book party, which mind you she organized, but left a layer of her skin at home.) I’ve still never tried Botox, which she’s been recommending for years, but I do have things I like. I’ve lived on the Upper East Side for a little over 10 years, and see Dr. Macrene on Park for my skin. I do whatever she tells me to, except PRP facials. (I couldn’t help but wonder: why?!) When you’re a teenager, all you want to do is buy beer. But once you’re past 30 all you want to do is to get carded. I’m not going to look like a 20-something and wouldn’t even want to, but Tom Ford foundation and Gucci Westman’s blush keep my skin looking healthy. Quitting cigarettes helped, too. I liked brown-ish lip colors in the ‘90s but now I just do a little lip liner and some clear gloss. My friend Charlotte’s daughter Lily gave me this one from Glossier, which I like. And I’ll always have a sexy, smudgy black eyeliner in my bag, next to lip balm and mints.

I will never be the woman with the perfect hair, who can wear white and not spill on it. I don’t mind if my curls are fuzzy and wild—I was getting along just fine as a curly girl before anyway. I do give myself quick blowouts at home with the Dyson Airwrap—I also have their Corrale straightener, which is cordless and a little heavier than irons I’ve used in the past. Lifting that up and down and rides on the Peloton are my two main workouts. And I get my hair colored at Sally Hershberger, another holdout from my Vogue days. I’ve always gotten highlights, but now that my hair is growing in gray I get a cool gloss to blend it. One thing I’ll never do again is go brunette. I’m also not a manicure person. That’s the thing about getting older: trends will always come and go like cabs with their vacant lights on, but the more you walk you realize, you don’t have to get in.”

—as told to ITG

Photos via HBO