#Mom And Me

Somewhere between Selfish by Kim Kardashian and “Your Facebook friend John Doe just joined Instagram” is me, standing at the gates of the hashtag heaven, where my turn in social relevancy came into fruition. Due to a particularly good hair day and right lighting, I took one of the most magnificent selfies my Instagram handle will ever have the good fortune of hosting. So good, in fact, my friend’s little sister casually dropped a #mom in the comments.

#Mom, for those unfamiliar, is a hashtag you can use when you’d like to show your admiration for a woman (who’s not actually your mom) virtually. Your actual mom can sound preachy and disapproving when she’s giving you career advice, but when Sophia Amoruso does it, it’s with the undeniable appeal of #Girlboss. #Mom’s popularity can be traced to (yes) Kim Kardashian—specifically when Lorde retweeted Kim Kardashian’s link to the Paper cover, with the hashtag. Initial response misunderstood the gesture—as if the singer was criticizing Kardashian for posing naked while being somebody’s mother. Ever the levelheaded teen, Lorde went on Tumblr to explain herself: “omg haha ok so. time to explain this. i retweeted kim’s amazing cover and wrote ‘MOM’, which among the youthz is a compliment; it basically jokingly means ‘adopt me/be my second mom/i think of you as a mother figure you are so epic (sic).'”

All potential sarcasm and mocking aside, had I been elevated to this level? Maybe. To be completely honest, the hashtag on my selfie wasn’t so straightforward—it was more of question. “Mom?” she wrote. Uh…yea? I guess? At this point, I’ll take it, confusing punctuation included.

You would think that, like many a social media-based trend, the whole #mom thing would have petered out. But there’s something about it that makes it stick out—and stick around, if only in my mind. Even before Lorde’s explanation, I got the sense that #mom was amongst the highest of compliments. It’s an exclusively female word that encapsulates all that is nurturing and aspirational—still, my 15-year-old disciple seemed unsure of herself, as everyone else does.

If there is one woman I admire for her aesthetic, gravitas, and endless mood inspiration, it’s Dana Wright, aka @Dentata666. The model-turned-punk-singer-turned-R&B-singer and I chatted last week, and I not-so-casually mentioned my adoration for her, explaining the whole #mom thing in the process. Her response: “What is #mom???” OK, so maybe not as self-explanatory as I thought.

I showed her Lorde’s tumblr post and asked, “OK, what do you think?”

“As long as girls are doing it in a genuinely supportive way, then it it great,” Dana said. “We need all we can get when it comes to females supporting each other’s sexy fierceness. There is definitely a movement slowly happening and this is just a small thread of it.”

If Lorde’s sincerity wasn’t enough, take it from someone who built her brand on social media—both personal and professional. Julia Baylis, internet queen and co-founder the clothing line It’s Me and You, seemed like the one who would finally set me straight. “Just because you want someone to be your #mom doesn’t mean you want to be them,” she told me. “It’s like applying this level of admiration we normally think of associated to women like Hilary [Clinton], Meryl Streep, and Angelina Jolie, but to anyone. #Mom means this person is doing things that I like, she’s someone I want to model myself after, and she doesn’t necessarily have to be a mom.”

However daft it seems on the surface, I’m convinced this hashtag in particular shows a positive evolution from early social media trends. Instagram can be about branding, sunsets and all the fitness #goals in the world—physical, self-conscious aspirations, and maybe part of the reason why actual moms don’t want their kids to have a Twitter or an Instagram (thank God my mom spared me from Myspace). But #mom isn’t necessarily visual. It means something bigger, I think. “It’s beyond just the immediate reaction to the image,” Julia told me. “It sums up your whole feeling of this person. It’s what they do, where they come from, and what they’re representing.” Put it this way: If Lorde had retweeted Kim with #goals instead of “mom,” the conversation revolving them would be an entirely different story.

“I think that the ability for anyone who’s younger to be able to find a role models through social media that they don’t have in their day-to-day life is awesome,” Julia said. And while one particular woman shouldn’t be an end goal (because certainly they aren’t thinking of themselves as that end goal) Julia brought about a point you kind of forget when thinking too much of what’s right and wrong in internet culture. “By habit we’re creatures of reference,” she said. We moodboard, we “like.” I reference that one scene in Paris, Texas as inspiration again and again, but I’m not Nastassja Kinski, and I never will be. I’m also not Dana or Julia, or Lorde or Kim Kardashian. But each woman has something I admire, and the fact that they have their #moms, and may be a #mom to someone else is equally inspiring for me.

—Claudia Marina

Image via Twitter and author’s Instagram.

The post #Mom And Me appeared first on Into The Gloss.

Louboutin Now Makes Nail Polish

Once upon a time in the ’90s a shoe designer, surname: Louboutin, was inspecting a pair of his shoes (let’s make an educated guess and say they were stilettos) but felt that something was missing. So, as the story goes, he took a bottle of nail polish and painted the soles red. “Magnifique!” he probably exclaimed, and a cultural phenomenon was birthed.

Flash forward several years to find a shiny new pair of satin heels printed with red lacquered nails in celebration of the launch of the Christian Louboutin’s very own glossy red polish—the first of many shades to come. (It’s good. Very red, with a thin enough consistency that allows for easy spread but that delivers loads of pigment with only one coat.)

Is this life imitating art or art imitating life? Or if the real question is, “Can you please explain the bottle?” I defer to David Lynch, who directed the Rouge Louboutin campaign video.

—Annie Kreighbaum

Marilyn Monroe’s Top Shelf

Recently, I stumbled onto one of the coolest things I’ve ever found: Marilyn Monroe’s Top Shelf, circa 1952. Apparently, Ms. Monroe gave Pageant magazine a huge exclusive, complete with sauna tour, diet advice, workout tips, and plenty of bon mots about her lifestyle. It was just too much of a gem not to share, so I’ve reproduced it here. I’m not advocating Marilyn’s diet, but it’s a fascinating look at one of the 20th century’s most iconic women. The text is a little hard to read, so I transcribed Marilyn’s quotes below. Enjoy!

—Lacey Gattis

How I Stay in Shape, By Marilyn Monroe

“Frankly, I’ve never considered my own figure so exceptional; until quite recently, I seldom gave it any thought at all. My biggest single concern used to be getting enough to eat. Now I have to worry about eating too much. I never used to bother with exercises. Now I spend at least 10 minutes each morning working out with small weights. I have evolved my own exercises, for the muscles I wish to keep firm, and I know they are right for me because I can feel them putting the proper muscles into play as I exercise.”

She Doesn’t Like To Feel Regimented

“Exercise. Each morning after I brush my teeth, wash my face and shake off the first deep layer of sleep, I lie down on the floor beside my bed and begin my first exercise. It is a simple bust-firming routine which consists of lifting five-pound weights from a spread-eagle arm position to a point directly above my head. I do this 15 times, slowly. I repeat the exercise another 15 times from a position with my arms above my head. Then, with my arms at a 45-degree angle from the floor, I move my weights in circles until I’m tired. I don’t count rhythmically like the exercise people on the radio; I couldn’t stand exercise if I had to feel regimented about it.”

How To Feel Blond All Over

“Sports. I have never cared especially for outdoor sports, and have no desire to excel at tennis, swimming, or golf. I’ll leave those things to the men. Despite its great vogue in California, I don’t think sun-tanned skin is any more attractive than white skin, or any healthier, for that matter. I’m personally opposed to a deep tan because I like to feel blond all over.

By nature, I suppose I have a languorous disposition. I hate to do things in a hurried, tense atmosphere, and it is virtually impossible for me to spring out of bed in the morning. On Sunday, which is my one day of total leisure, I sometimes take two hours to wake up, luxuriating in every last moment of drowsiness. Depending upon my activities, I sleep between five and ten hours every night. I sleep in an extra-wide single bed, and I use only one heavy down comforter over me, summer or winter. I have never been able to wear pajamas or creepy nightgowns; they disturb my sleep.”

A Set of Bizarre Eating Habits

“Breakfast. I’ve been told that my eating habits are absolutely bizarre, but I don’t think so. Before I take my morning shower, I start warming a cup of milk on the hot plate I keep in my hotel room. When it’s hot, I break two raw eggs into the milk, whip them up with a fork, and drink them while I’m dressing. I supplement this with a multi-vitamin pill, and I doubt if any doctor could recommend a more nourishing breakfast for a working girl in a hurry.

Dinner. My dinners at home are startlingly simple. Every night I stop at the market near my hotel and pick up a steak, lamb chops or some liver, which I broil in the electric oven in my room. I usually eat four or five raw carrots with my meat, and that is all. I must be part rabbit; I never get bored with raw carrots.

P.S. It’s a good thing, I suppose, that I eat simply during the day, for in recent months I have developed the habit of stopping off at Wil Wright’s ice cream parlor for a hot fudge sundae on my way home from my evening drama classes. I’m sure that I couldn’t allow myself this indulgence were it not that my normal diet is composed almost totally of protein foods.”

Hair Removal, The Old-Fashioned Way

At some point, razor companies must have realized that shaving one’s legs is a horrendous chore that no one actually wants to do and thought, “Ladies love John Stamos. Ladies will shave for John Stamos.” In that they are probably correct. But it’s 2014, times have changed! Now apparently the only thing that John Stamos can get women to do is eat Greek yogurt.

BANKS, Singer

“I’m from LA, but everyone thinks that I’m British. [Laughs] I’d been writing music for around 10 years before I started really singing stuff. It’s all very sacred to me, so I didn’t want to put it out in the world just yet. Then I started getting more comfortable and working with great people and felt ready—at some point Zane Lowe, one of the biggest radio DJs in the UK, ripped a song of mine from a private SoundCloud link that my manager had sent to his friend. He played it on his show as his next hype record, which was just wild! It’s funny—maybe that’s why everyone thinks I’m English. So then things just started to take off. I always say my music is like dark blue or black, like a punch to your gut that feels really good.

I’m on tour right now, and part of what keeps me sane on the road is trying to make a routine within not having a routine because tour is just nonstop. I definitely drink lots of water. I use this Decleor Neroli Oil to moisturize—no matter what the climate is, it always makes my skin really moist. It smells good, too. I always put it on before I do my makeup for a show, just because I don’t like a really thick face of makeup. I have freckles; I don’t like covering up too much. I like things dewy and natural, and I think that having moisture in your skin is really beautiful and youthful—sometimes that’s more important than coverage. Nars has this Light Optimizing Primer with little a bit of shine in it, and I’ll use that. Sometimes, I just use traditional moisturizer. It’s funny because all of the really expensive ones make me break out, but I have a CVS-brand oil-free moisturizer that works and doesn’t make me feel oily. I think my skin is pretty normal, in the middle. It’s mostly just making sure that when I get off stage, I always wash my face—I use Malin + Goetz Grapefruit Face Cleanser.

When I’m in show mode, I can’t even think about putting on makeup; I just have to be centered. Otherwise, I love Nars. They have really good cream-based eyeshadows—that’s another dewy thing that I love for my skin. They have this one color that they don’t make anymore, and I’m really upset about it. It’s called Decameron. I like a kind of dark, bronze-y brown smoky eye with maybe some mascara, some contouring and stuff, but I don’t like wearing black or pinks. I like it more tonal. Kevin Aucoin—he’s good; I think The Volume Mascara is the best mascara there is.

On tour, there’s dry shampoo—I use the one by Bed Head. And since I just colored my hair, I use Davines Alchemic Shampoo in Chocolate. I’m not naturally this dark-haired. I actually just went a bit darker before we shot the video for ‘Brain‘ because I just felt like it went with the song. I love it! My approach to beauty is all about moods. If you want to feel sexy, if you want to feel feminine, or, I don’t know, boyish—it’s all about how you feel at that point in time. My mood changes. Sometimes I want to feel more feminine, other times not. I like feeling comfortable and effortless, like I didn’t try too hard. Then, on stage, I like feeling powerful, and I wear things that make me feel that way. I have this Goddess Ring by Yunus & Eliza. There’s a female face on it, and I turn the shape away from me to face the audience when I perform. And my stylist just made me this incredible coat; it’s pretty much a cape. You put your arms through it, and it has these crazy shoulders. So I like feeling very sexy and feminine, but in a more dark and powerful way than say, like, showing my breasts.”

—as told to ITG

BANKS photographed by Emily Weiss in Brooklyn, New York on June 4, 2014. Check out her website for show dates and tracks.