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citizenM


Let's imagine for a minute that somewhere in the middle of a very loud city, there's a treasured place filled with the cutest corners to snuggle up in. To read a book, have a cocktail, call back your mom, maybe even answer all those emails you've been avoiding. A place so special that even in this city that never sleeps, you can slip into dreams so sweet, so sound that for a moment you forget time exists. It's bright and it's sunny and it's exactly where you need to be. It's CitizenM Hotels and it's made for lovers, dreamers, my friends, and yours. In fact we can probably all just meet on the hotel's rooftop - one of my all-time favorites, by the way - for a brew, on a sunny summer afternoon. I call this a favorite hideaway, because on the first day of my CitizenM staycation, I sat for hours on the rooftop with one of my best friends, ate the most delicious lunch, and got the most inspired kind of work done while the sun set around us. 

At what point does a place become too perfect, you ask? It only gets better. And when the the day is almost over and you've one too many cocktails after dinner, the best part is how zen the rooms become, how quiet and serene. And when the morning arrives and you're ready to be greeted by New York City's most delicious rays, you can summon the curtains to rise, roll over, and remember how good life is because you've woken up in one of the greatest cities that this world has to offer. New York, I love you, baby.
Photos by Lauren Gould at CitizenM Hotel in Times Square NYC. Wearing Tribe Kelley and Daydream Nation. Featuring the Richmond and Finch Pink Marble iPhone Case.

My Mother's Daughter

The magnitude of my capacity to forgive, to love, to always reach higher and stretch further. There is no doubt that I am my mother's daughter.
My mom is my best friend. I can try to deny the fact that I've willingly (over)shared with her my most intimate secretes as I journey throughout my twenties, especially the late ones, but without her I wouldn't know how to find the light.

I am the same age now that my mother was, when she gave birth to me and the older I become the more connected I feel to the fierce women that raised me. The same ones who, too, I imagine are tied to the moon. I descend from a lineage of powerful, magical women. Strong and tenacious. Virtuous and unapologetic about their intellect. comfortable in the skin they were given, fiercely protective of their individuality and committed to love and family above all. I think of my childhood often and what a happy, wildly independent girl I was. Sometimes I wonder where my resilience comes from. My unwavering faith in the universe and deeply rooted understanding of how kind it can be, when you are kind. Sentiments my mother shared with me since I was a young girl. To always tell the truth, seek answers from within, dare to ask why,
to ask for more,
to dream without limits and to keep my heart open even after someone tried to break it in two with their bare hands.  Behind my mother's beautiful green eyes, are stories that I am still learning about a woman whose message has become my own. To love well, give much, and not apologize for being
good.

Spending some around the city with my mom or a day shopping, going to the bookstore, doing something to beautify and get back to our zen, is something I've enjoyed doing since forever. As a young girl, I'd love spending time in the hair salons and used to spend hours dressing up in my moms accessories from the eighties, wearing her makeup and heels. It seemed a perfect fit to pair with Pucker Makeup and treat my mom to a day of pampering. She deserves to be treated like the goddess-queen that she is every day and that's definitely something I'm working towards. Small moments like these mean so much because they become the memories we hold onto for so long.

Thank you to everyone at Pucker for giving us this amazing mother-daughter day and experience! We can't wait to come back for another makeup session. Maybe this time we'll get mom to try some lashes!






Makeup courtesy of Pucker Makeup. Please visit www.puckermakeup.com to book your appointment today! Thanks to Lauren for the Post-Lunch Snaps of Mom & Me in Soho!

This Mother's Day, treat Mom to a full face makeup application at @PuckerMakeup and get YOUR appointment complimentary when scheduled at the same time.

The Farmhouse at New Paltz

Somewhere in New Paltz, deep in the middle of winter, when I lost so much I hadn't needed to be carrying to begin with.

I left the city, missing only a few things from my backpack and one playlist on my mind. Aiming to take as little as possible with me as I set out to find proof that nature, stillness, and the sunset could always put a girl back together again. Surrounded by love, this moment felt safe and much like home should be. I didn't wonder about the time or if he texted. I woke up as early as I wanted and bathed until I pruned. I sank into a feeling I so desperately needed and couldn't resist champagne for breakfast or dessert at noon, and didn't want to. It was the way bliss ought to be; simple and connected, I was able to hear the sound of my heart beating as it reminded me of how much life I still had left to seize. Adventure to seek and hands to hold. New faces to kiss and memories 
waiting for me to make
anew. Sometimes it feels like I leave a small piece of me everywhere that I go. Walking away with just as much as I've left behind, it's always
all love.

Spending time nestled away in the Hudson Valley's Farmhouse at New Paltz, sipping on something by the fire, reading a book beside the lake at sunrise, laughs - never-ending - and following trails to new destinations are moments I connect to the most. To remind my mind that whatever I'm feeling at the moment, in the city when it's loud and I can't seem to remember where I've placed my phone charger,
wallet, mind 
is exactly where I'm supposed to be. And in the farmhouse, on a quiet morning before anyone else was awake, I sat under a morning sky and remembered how good it felt to be somewhere new, worry-free, and with so much gratitude that my heart could burst. I wrote a journal entry that I'll share later; something about being Tied to the Moon or my Return to Love. Either way, it was the first time I actually had something to say in so long. Guessing it's harder to find the words when your mind and heart are becoming reconnected; and despite all the time that can flash before you or all the things you've let go unsaid is a moment sweet and 
delicious as caramel.
When it all comes together and you feel like you can glow.

If serenity is what you're after, sunsets are what you chase, and being somewhere between the city and tranquility is where you'd like to spend a long weekend, then your next move is to book The Farmhouse or The Cottage and take a trip just 90 miles north of New York City. The Farmhouse is only a few minutes from the city of New Paltz and equally close to Minnewaska State Park, which essentially provided us with the best of all words. A hideaway worth taking time for.




Please visit The Farmhouse at New Paltz to book your stay.



Matrix Style Link


I haven't always been a wash-and-go, kind of girl. But a wash-and-go, girl is what I was always meant to be.


If you've known me long enough, you'd know that at one point I thought I was going to live forever with my long, very straight, very dark hair. I spent most of my teenage, then college years, with a flat-iron in one hand and my flip-phone in the other and would cringe instantly at the sight of any frizz. Growing up, Sundays, were preserved for the hair salon. Spending this kind of time with my mom at the salon, is still something that I love to do. Whenever I go home for a long weekend, I anticipate a Sunday morning at Mireya's in Brentwood. Back in the day, I would sit in the salon for hours, do my homework, text my boyfriends, gossip with the stylists about breaking up with my boyfriends, paint my nails while I waited under the dryer and admittedly read every latest issue of People magazine. My routine consisted of a deep conditioning, a wash and set, followed by a blowout, followed by me leaving the salon, going home and flat-ironing my mane, section by section to guarantee frizz free pin-straight hair. I still enjoy rocking a straight look every now and again, it kind of feels like two sides of the same girl. To this day, some of my best girlfriends will look at me and say, "I can't believe your hair is curly".

It wasn't until many years later, some time in my mid-twenties, when I fell deeply into a new love, with someone who often told me I looked most beautiful in the morning bare-faced and with some sweaty post-yoga hair. Maybe it took someone I really believed to notice, but soon after I started to really feel beautiful while being the most natural. Accepting my curls, really meant accepting my self. And while I hadn't been ready to brace the world with natural hair for so long, this type of comfort, is irreversible. It's one thing to feel something, it's another thing to know it. From then on, the curls haven't been the only thing I've started to let loose.

I've been on my curly hair journey for almost three years and what I've figured out is that every curly girl needs to find what works best for her. For some, it's strictly no heat, oils and silk pillowcases - all of which I can totally get behind! For me, my routine mainly consists of minimal heat and relying deeply on the right, most gentle products. Essentially, I wouldn't want to put anything in my hair that I wouldn't put on my skin and I don't overdo it.

A typical day-to-day style for me, is the pineapple and a whole lot of curly bang. I start by deep conditioning my hair as needed, add a drop of Matrix Style Link Grip Definer for hydration hold, because sometimes my curls are thirsty. Then, I add a touch of Matrix Style Link Rough Me Up Spray evenly throughout for texture and to add a little hold. I enjoy letting my hair air-dry but typically am rushing and wind up using a diffuser, with one foot out of the door.


For an alternate vibe and when I want to rekindle my sleekness or give my curls a break, I'll still wash-and-set then blowout. Now, however, I will add some Blowout Skinny Queen by Matrix, first to help protect my curls and keep they healthy. I'll top it off with some Style Link Volume Fixer hairspray to tame any fly-aways and keep my hair full and moving.

It should also be mentioned that in my early years, I would dread the rain and avoid getting my hair wet at all costs. Now, all I want to do is jump in water and walk back to my apartment from the subway without an umbrella. My best self, means being my most natural self. And once that idea started to make sense to me, I understood how silly it seemed to hide from something so beautiful as rain falling from the sky or going snorkeling in Costa Rica. Okay, maybe snorkeling isn't my thing, but the point is I jumped in - head, heart, and hair first.

Check out some of my favorite hairstyles from my most recent collaboration with Matrix! If I could braid my hair like this everyday, I would. And for the record, I've tried to. 



 
Shot by Joseph Cartright for Matrix. Hair by Michael Albor and Lasha Keller. At home shots by Lauren Gould feat. Tangle Teezer.


This post is brought to you by Matrix.

Essentials

VUSE VIBE Paid Advertisement 

Last-minute packing a few of my favorite things and realizing how sweet it feels to minimize. 

About a week ago, I packed to set out on a roadtrip with girlfriends to the Women's March on Washington. Our message? Love Never Fails and Only Love is Real. Now, with a fire of a different kind, I’m off on a wintery weekender. Simplicity being the point of arrival, especially when it comes to how much luggage a girl can honestly carry,  I slowly set aside a short-list of must-have’s. It’s clear to me now more than ever that nothing matters more than filling my heart with love and keeping my bags filled with necessities.

Bundled in my newly found metallic jacket, I pack a few soft knits to wear by the fire, film to remember what we all looked like and how we all felt. A soy candle and patchouli because, mood. My journal and Delta of Venus, because moody.

And a few more essentials to spice up the experience, like my new VUSE VIBE vape, because the refreshing melon and silky nectar flavors have got me sprung. And I cannot forget my favorite tunes to listen to while on the road. A playlist to remind my mind, that every day is new

With my heart leading the way and some essentials in my backpack, I feel ready for my next adventure. Keep the good vibes flowing. Keep the movement going. 




Shot by Phil Sullivan. Brought to you by VUSE VIBE.

VUSE contains nicotine extracted from the tobacco plant.  Nicotine is addictive and no tobacco product has been shown to be safe.  Not for sale to minors.
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