My Love Affair: New York Magazine’s ‘The Cut’

Welcome to one of my many obsessions, sis. NYMag’s ‘The Cut’: a platform created and written by women, for women. Their ‘About Me’ page is as eloquent and spot-on as any I would have ever attempted to write;

“Welcome to the premier destination for women with stylish minds. No matter the subject, we address our readers’ lives head on with generous wit, honesty, and power. We are in a dynamic conversation with women about the issues that matter to them most — politics, feminism, work, money, relationships, mental health, fashion and issues relating to equality.

A woman with a stylish mind.

By reading ‘The Cut’ on the daily, I become a woman with a stylish mind. The women of ‘The Cut’; Madeleine AggelerAmanda Arnold, Kelly Conaboy, Allison P. Davis, Katie Heaney, Gabriella PaiellaLisa RyanAnna Silman, Erica Smith, Sarah SpellingsEdith Zimmerman, Hayley Schueneman, Opheli Garcia Lawler, Ann FriedmanHeather Havrilesky, Cathy Horyn, Maureen O’ConnorRebecca TraisterDiana TsuiSarah NechamkinIndya BrownLindsay PeoplesEmilia PetrarcaJen GannKathleen Hou, Liane Radel, Catie L’Heureux, Callie Beusman, Melissa DahlIzzy Grinspan, Ruth Spencer, Molly Fischer, Dora Fung, Rebecca Ramsey, and of course, Stella Bugbee, have made a tremendous impact on how I see modern news in the eyes of the modern woman.

Everything I want to hear or ever hope to hear is accessible on one platform. The articles feel as though my friends and I’ve written them – and the headlines are even better. A look into any of mine and my girlfriends’ group chats and you’d see something akin to one of their most recent headlines;

16 Fancy Pajamas You Can Wear to Parties

Archaeologists Discover Remains of Ancient Hypebeast

 

and my personal favorite at the moment: The Grinch Is… Totally Kind of Hot?

Not gonna lie, my girl Meg would say the same. The consistent practice of using modern language (i.e. words like “hypebeast”) in every article posted resonates with the new generation (me n my girlfrens) and allows for a certain un-guarded approachableness that welcomes conversation and contribution. In other words, girl talk.

 

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“Our stories are organized around four categories: Style, Self, Culture, and Power — words that give us a framework for what it means to be a woman moving forward in the world today. Each one informs the other. After all, a woman with a stylish mind poses a real threat to every industry she enters.”

My goal? To be a real threat. The Cut is helping me get there.

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My Skin is Thanking Me for Dry-Brushing

I have recently started dry brushing my skin. Let me just say this now – I have seen a significant difference in my skin as a whole.

However, take into consideration that I have been more conscious about what I’ve been putting into my body lately as well. I’ve been eating smaller portions of grains and proteins, but filling up on leafy greens and veggies. It’s summer. Most of the time it’s too hot to eat a steak. So keep that in mind. Since dry brushing has become part of my routine, though, I will keep an eye on my skin in the winter months, too, when I’m not eating as healthily and all I want to do is cuddle up and watch movies.

Ok – so here’s how I started.

I did some research. What is this dry brushing thing? Does it even actually work? How do I incorporate it into my regular routine? Is it just another fads that Gwyneth Paltrow is tricking me into thinking is working but it’s really a bunch of hooey?

I tend to have pretty dry skin on my body – well other than my armpits – because I’m a nefariously sweaty individual. All in all, though, my skin is relatively healthy. I have a few dark spots on my legs and those little white bumps on my upper arms, but other than that I’ve got major dryness. And I really do try to lather up in lotion after each shower, but sometimes I’m just too tired or too lazy. Self care is seriously draining, guys. But it makes you feel so good about yourself.

According to my extensive research:

What are the benefits of dry brushing?

In short, smoother skin and lymphatic drainage.

Our lymphatic system is a network of vessels, nodes, and ducts that transports lymph throughout the body. Many of these vessels are located directly under our skin and dry brushing is said to promote lymph flow and helps us ‘detoxify’.

Obviously, dry brushing helps to exfoliate our skin as well. This means that all of those pesky dead skin cells are whisked away and skin becomes smoother. An added benefit to this exfoliation is cleaner skin. Exfoliation also helps to rid our pores from excess oils and dirt we pick up during the day. Cleaner skin means healthier skin – so you may notice that your pores look smaller than they did before dry brushing.

Some say that dry brushing has a unique benefit – reduction of cellulite. While this hasn’t been proven, I definitely noticed a difference in my skin on my behind. It didn’t reduce cellulite, but it definitely helped my skin to breath on my upper thighs and butt which aided in a healthier and smoother appearance.

How do you ‘dry brush’?

You brush from bottom to top of your body in an upward motion toward the heart. Start with your feet and move up, brushing your arms last. Use long, smooth strokes about 10-15 times on each area. It shouldn’t hurt at all – so adjust the pressure you use to your liking.

When do you ‘dry brush’?

Normally, I dry brush before I shower. I shower at night (because my hair is a bitch to dry in the morning). After my shower, I lather up in a creme lotion (Cetaphil) and I’m relaxed and blissful at bedtime.

If I forget to, I’ll dry brush after my shower (although this isn’t as beneficial with moister skin).

Where do you get a dry brush?

Target, Walmart, T.J.Maxx or Marshall’s, Ulta, Sephora, Bed, Bath & Beyond, Amazon… the list goes on. And they’re pretty cheap!  Try to get one with a handle so you can reach your back. I have two – a circular brush with a strap that fits right on my hand for easy brushing on my legs and a brush with a long handle so I can reach my back. Bacne (back acne) is not cute on anyone. Replace once you feel you need to.

Did it work for you?

YES! I mean, it’s summer. I need nice, smooth, sun-kissed skin! Dry brushing has made my little white bumps, also known as keratosis pilaris, virtually disappear and my whole body became so smooth and seems almost firmer. Like I said, I have been living a more healthy lifestyle, too so the firmness could be attributed to that. Overall, I’m very happy with my new dry brush body routine. I dry brush almost every day before my shower. It makes me relaxed, clean and beautiful before bed and a lot of my dark spots/stretch marks have faded as a result, too, which is absolutely fabulous. If you don’t dry brush now – you should definitely start!