Fashion. Paris. Vogue.

Ask anyone that knows me; I’m not the one to read memoirs or really any non-fiction easily. I find them dense and hard to get into, and I’d much rather get my info through a good Google search. I had the opportunity to read Joan Juliet Buck’s memoir, The Price of Illusion way before it was published, but my aversion to such literature kept me from it until about a month ago. I was having a conversation with the editor and the subject of fashion came up. He told me that if I loved fashion, I would LOVE this memoir. Much like how Joan turned down the position of Editor-in-Chief of Paris Vogue several times (three?), I had run out of excuses.

For those of you who tend to shy away from memoirs, I completely understand. They’re not your thing; they’re generally not mine either. But one thing I learned from working in publishing is that there’s always an exception (life lessons!). And sometimes you need to put down your prejudices, stop making excuses, and just read. Because that book that is not your genre, that book that is out of your norm…well, it just might surprise you. And, you might learn something.

Hands down, this memoir is fabulous, and it reads like a narrative. At times I had to reminding myself that it was non-fiction and that all of the characters are (were) in fact real people. Not only was Joan Juliet Buck the Editor-in-Chief of Paris Vogue for seven years, but she was the ONLY American to do it. Her life reads like a bit of a fairytale where fashion and Hollywood big shots intersect. From her producer father (Jules Buck) to her childhood ‘sister’ (Angelica Houston) to her friendships with Karl Lagerfeld, Yves Saint Laurent, and the then unknown Christian Louboutin – Joan has lived an enchanting life. For all my fashion friends out there…you must read this. Immediately. And let me know what you think. And, since tonight is the annual Met Gala ball, it’s the perfect time to start!

Joan Juliet Buck’s The Price of Illusion.  2017 Atria Books.

Wild Kingdom: Where Would You Draw the Line for Your Face?

On my way to work this morning, I was reading an article in the latest Vogue by Lynn Yaeger, titled “Wild Kingdom.” The sole photo in the article is of a woman’s face covered in fish eggs. Apparently it is just one of several new and unconventional ingredients (treatments) for skin care. A couple others mentioned in the article are having a live snail crawl across your face, and using bee venom.

According to Paul Cox, PhD, who is quoted a lot in this article, not only does salmon-roe contain a lot of omega-6, which is just good for your body in general, if applied to the skin, “an enzyme in the roe – released while baby salmon are hatching – …act[s] like an ultra-gentle exfoliant” that doesn’t irritate or dry your skin out. You can find salmon-roe extract in Perricone MD’s Blue Plasma ($95,

What are the benefits of having a snail crawl across your face leaving mucus? Apparently mucus contains a “collagen-style protein” that, as many of you should know, ccan help restore elasticity to skin and improve the appearance of wrinkles. Snail mucus has been found to have restorative properties as well. Napoleon Perdis’ Auto Pilot BBB Cream ($45, contains this such ingredient.

How does one extract venom from bees to use as a skin care ingredient? “By subjecting bees to tiny electric shocks, inducing them to drop a dot of precious venum,” or from collecting dried venom “from the bottom of a beehive.” According to the article, bee venom has the ability to diminish the appearance of wrinkles by plumping the skin, and help control and treat acne. Rodial Bee Venom 24 Carat Gold Super Essence ($470, is on the expensive side, but is supposed to be amazing.

The article also goes on to discuss botulinum toxin (botox), and how even though it toxic for your body, people still do it. While the idea of putting any of these “treatments” onto my face is revolting to me, I would be more inclined to try them as long as they were in a small part of a whole rather than just being the whole thing. And, if I had to choose between which of the three above to try, I probably would try the salmon-roe extract. It sounds much more appealing than the other two.


Lauren Weisberger’s Revenge Wears Prada: The Devil Returns

Rarely have I found a sequel to be as entertaining, or capture as much energy as the original book that inspired it.  More often than not, the author tries in vain to achieve the same level of perfection, but never quite reaches it.  Thankfully, the latter cannot be said of Lauren Weisberger’s Revenge Wears Prada: The Devil Returns, the long awaited sequel to her 2003 novel The Devil Wears Prada, based on her experience of working as an assistant to Vogue’s Anna Wintour (published June 4, 2013, by Simon & Schuster).  In the ten-year interim, she has written three other novels (of which I may check out quite soon), but really, Revenge is what we (fans of both the novel and subsequent film) have been waiting for.

Interestingly enough, Revenge is set ten years after The Devil Wears Prada (coincidence? I think not!), bringing back Andrea “Andy” Sachs, Emily Charlton and Miranda Priestly.  It opens on the morning of Andy’s wedding to the handsome Max Harrison – who comes from a family of stature, but has recently experienced some financial setbacks – and she is best friends with Emily – which is odd, but somehow they have a good dynamic.  Andy and Emily founded and head a high-end wedding magazine together, called The Plunge (what Runway is to the fashion world), of which is how Andy met Max in the first place; he was a friend of Emily’s husband Miles (yes, Emily is actually married, although there is talk throughout the novel of Miles’ play-boy ways), and was at the party that Andy and Emily threw to get investors three years prior.

All that being said, Andy is awoken on the morning of her wedding from a nightmare, where she was still working as Miranda’s assistant and going crazy trying to meet her impossible demands.  She is comforted briefly by Max who snuck in to see her, only to become paralyzed with shock upon the discovery of a letter to Max from his mother Barbara, begging him not to go through with the wedding, just moments before having to walk down the aisle.

From that day forward, Andy’s life is never the same.  Miranda begins courting Andy and Emily in hopes of purchasing The Plunge.  We see a softer, “almost human” side of her as she tries to woo the girls into giving her what she wants, which, we all know is just a formality, because no one says no to Miranda.  Emily is thrilled and ready to sign the magazine away, except Andy doesn’t want to sell for a few reasons, one being that there’s a clause in the contract that states that the editorial staff stays on for at least a year after the acquisition…and Andy does not want to work for Miranda again.  Andy also has things going on in her personal life, she becomes a mother, and she crosses paths with her ex-boyfriend Alex, the one who broke her heart not too long after she quit working for Miranda, the one whom she still obsesses about…the one who got away.

This is where Revenge matches up to The Devil Wears Prada.  The extravagant parties and fashion are still there, the anxiety of Miranda is still there – Miranda is still there, which, as we all know makes the book; she’s the character that you love to hate – and over the course of one evening, Andy learns that no one is who they seem to be, not her husband Max, not Emily…and she will have to decide whether to leave her life behind completely and start over, or stay in a life where she might never have a chance at true happiness.

Revenge Wears Prada: The Devil Returns may feature Andy as a wife, mother, entrepreneur…it answers our question of what happened to her after she cursed out Miranda in Paris and left the job “a million girls would die for” at Runway, but at the same time, it’s nice to know that she hasn’t changed all that much, she’s still the same naïve woman that we empathized with ten years earlier.  I’m not sure if this needs to be turned into a series, but it would be nice if Revenge was optioned for a film…with the same case of course.

“Looking back we should have taken photographs…of all the unhappiness…coz now my mind’s playing tricks on me…I forget we’re not meant to be.”

Katy Perry, Vogue, July 2013

My Vogue Addiction

I have talked about my love for Vogue many times before…but, it has reached way beyond love at this point. For the past two weeks, I have been venturing to drugstores and newsstands on a daily basis (okay, daily meaning work-week) in search of the February issue. I frustratedly watched as how, every other magazine came out with theirs and still, mine did not. I asked store employees if they knew when the next Vogue would grace their stands, but sadly, they didn’t have an answer for me. Desperately, I searched the internet to try and find out; I consider myself a decent googler, but I couldn’t find a publication date.

I was starting to give up hope, when I decided to call my friend Burke. He always can find things online when I can’t. After less than two minutes of conversing, where I expressed more than a little concern about my dilemma, Burke came to my rescue. Not only did he find out the answer that I was so desperate to know, he stumbled upon something I couldn’t have imagined; a list of all the Vogue publication dates for the entire year. My jaw dropped; I was in complete shock. Immediately, I scanned the page to look for the February date and my heart sank when I learned that I would have to wait another twelve days.

This morning, many days before the list told me that it would be out, I stepped into CVS on my way to work. I decided to just walk by the magazines, all the while thinking that I would once again be disappointed…I found my salvation. There, on the stand, in all its glossy glory, stood February Vogue. Instantly, my not-so-great week turned around and I was beaming. I plucked a copy and hurried to the cashier to pay for it, then headed to work with it carefully tucked under my arm. My coworkers, after laughing at me, convinced me that I should just subscribe to it already. I had thought of this before, but hadn’t actually done so.

I am now subscribed to Vogue; I enter into rehab for my addiction tomorrow.