The Running Shoes We Won’t Travel Without
Our editor’s picks for footwear that marries form and function, so you can put in the miles.
Plus, breezy summer dresses, a special-edition Eames chair, and a refreshing body scrub.
JUNE IS MY birthday month (go, team Gemini!), so I’m accustomed to thinking about my wants and needs, both existential and consumer-oriented, around this time of year. We all know there’s no such thing as a perfect present — and who hasn’t been disappointed by a pair of socks or underwear? — but as we get older, we learn that small gestures and a dash of joy go a long way. A thoughtful gift won’t soothe all your woes but can be a much-appreciated lift if, say, you’ve just realized you’re fully in your late 30s and have so much left to do. From swimsuits to spa trips, these were the things that put smiles, however evanescent, on our faces this month.
— Alex Frank
When originally released in 1950, the Eames Shell Chair was the world’s first mass-produced chair with a seat and backrest formed from a one-piece shell. Soon after releasing the iconic piece of furniture, designers Charles and Ray Eames were visited by artist and architect Saul Steinberg, known for his drawings of people and animals. During Steinberg’s visit, he painted his trademark cat on one of the Eameses’ newly-minted shell chairs, an occasion that was documented in photographs. This month, Vitra and Herman Miller, in partnership with the Eames Office, will release a limited edition of 500 Eames Fiberglass Armchairs featuring the hand-painted cat originally sketched by Steinberg. For fans of felines and midcentury design, this chair, with its depiction of a sleeping cat, is the ideal marriage of function and whimsy — proof that the perfect chair does indeed exist. — T. Cole Rachel
It only took me 36 years and around 11 months, but I finally found the holy grail of swimwear. I’ve long been a fan of CDLP for making some of the best underwear I’ve ever worn, but it was only recently, on a sun- and saltwater-filled trip to Rosewood Le Guanahani in Saint Barthélemy, that I learned how ideal CDLP’s bathing suits are too. The Swim Shorts are everything I’ve been looking for: They cut high enough on the thigh that I feel a little wild and free, but long enough that I’m not exposed. The material, Econyl, a nylon made from ocean waste and landfills, is sturdy but flexible, offering security on long swims but never inhibiting me. The swim shorts are versatile enough that I even wore them on the tennis court, and didn’t play half bad, either. And the colors — jewel tones that are more minerally than most swimwear, which tends to be flashy and bright — are just right. I chose a flinty Rust shade, but I’m just as in love with beachy Coral Dust. I can’t tell you what a relief it is finally to have a go-to — no more agonizing in changing rooms, wondering whether a certain pair is flattering, no more endless scrolling on e-commerce sites for colors and sizes I’m desperate to find. Here, at CDLP, is a swimsuit solution, the answer to one of life’s most enduring little worries. — Alex
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I’ve unfortunately inherited my family’s dark under-eye circles and have tried every remedy under the sun to correct them: spoons in the freezer, green-tea bags, cold compresses, and an assortment of eye patches and masks. Joanna Vargas’ hydrating eye masks are in a league of their own. The superhero-looking masks — these will give you real Catwoman vibes — cover more area than any other I’ve tried. They are hydrating and luxurious, and bring new life to my otherwise dull and tired eyes while reducing the appearance of fine lines. I prefer to keep them in the freezer and use them cold for an even more rejuvenating experience. — Elissa Polls
I have become a sort of collector of all things olive oil. It started after I tasted my first garden-lettuce salad at Chez Panisse. I was so enamored of the flavors in the vinaigrette that I asked our waiter to bring out the olive oil so I could replicate this simple treasure at home. I have an assortment of oils, and each has a specific purpose and flavor. When I was introduced to McEvoy Ranch, a small, family-owned farm based in Petaluma, California, I took my collection to new heights. McEvoy’s oils come in a variety of flavors including garlic, lemon, blood orange, jalapeño, and my personal favorite, basil (it won a gold medal at the 2023 California State Fair Olive Oil Competition). I dress fresh mozzarella and tomatoes in McEvoy oil, and my tastebuds are instantly transported to the Italian countryside, without adding a leaf of basil. The chai flavor turns vanilla ice cream into an artisanal treat bursting with notes of ginger, cardamom, and cinnamon. McEvoy’s extra virgin olive oil for cooking is some of the best I’ve ever tried, providing all of the health benefits you would expect from a high-quality product without masking the flavors of your dish. — Elissa
My winter wear is modeled after Elizabeth Holmes’ wardrobe, which is modeled after Steve Jobs’. I call it “shadow dressing” — black on black, wet-hand-feel textures, turtlenecks morphing into black trousers morphing into black boots. No pattern, no color. But come summer, I sprout into a tropical flower. Patterns and juicy colorways are the name of the game. This is why I was so giddy to discover Coco Shop, an Antiguan brand founded in 1949. Coco Shop’s breezy cotton dresses, tailored enough to appear put-together but easy enough for a walk on the beach, feel like a creamy Caribbean breeze — soft, salty, and sun-soaked. Each handcrafted piece makes the perfect addition to a warm-weather wardrobe and is an embodiment of island dreams no matter where you are. — Sophie Mancini
Like Sophie, I’m drawn to black. For any event that requires formal attire, you can find me in it. Black dress, black shoes, black jacket, or black trousers and a black blouse. Maybe it’s simple, maybe it’s classic, or maybe I’ve never really learned what it means to dress up. Either way, last month I attended a gala event and took my all-black attire up a notch with a black silk hair bow from Kamperett. I rarely dabble in accessories, so during this experience, I learned their power. Not only did this addition elevate my minimal-effort hairstyle (read: slicked ponytail) and make me feel more put-together, but I also received many compliments. The bow, made from 100% silk crepe de chine and set on a gold comb, is a timeless, effortless accessory for someone who is admittedly not so accessory savvy.
— Hailey Andresen
The SoHo neighborhood of Manhattan can be intense. Every street corner is blaring with ultra-urban energy, like if you slowed your pace for one minute, you’d get trampled. I recently found a little oasis amidst its chaos, though, at the Sisley Spa, located in The Dominick Hotel. Alongside the traditional sauna and steam room, the spa also has a salt chamber and a hammam, or Turkish bath. But the real gems are their massages: stress-melting experiences that have you reentering the neighborhood with a renewed sense of center.
As a New Yorker, I’ve always been envious of West Coasters who can quickly pop over to Vegas to see a show. I’d do about anything to catch Usher or Adele at their residencies in Sin City. But even if Atlantic City doesn’t quite have the all-encompassing oomph of Nevada’s most infamous gambling hub, it does have Hard Rock Atlantic City’s Etess Arena, which hosts a pretty incredible lineup of musicians this year: Janet Jackson (!), the Jonas Brothers, Tears for Fears, Diana Ross, Anita Baker, Sting, and Leon Bridges, to name a few. The venue also hosts comedians, such as Tina Fey and Bill Burr, if that’s more your speed. And no, I’m not much of a gambler, but I’m glad I have a nearby spot to bet hard on a great concert. — Alex
With the sweet summer months upon us, we are soaking in the sun. As a result, my nightly skincare routine has taken on new products. The Palermo Coffee Body Scrub and the Detox + Clarify Routine kit have done wonders after a full day of commuting through the New York City streets and subway. The scrub fills the room with aromas of lemon, rosemary, and, of course, coffee, and leaves my skin silky smooth and refreshed. The detox kit has a facial mask that takes me away from my phone and incorporates activated charcoal and spirulina to help calm my skin. Founder Jessica Morelli learned the importance of self-care from her nonna and wanted to highlight the value of natural ingredients and return to her roots with this Italian-inspired line. By the end of the routine, your face will feel restored and ready for whatever comes your way. — Lisa Lok
Alex Frank is a contributing editor at Departures. Based in Manhattan, Frank previously worked at Vogue.com as deputy culture editor. His writing has appeared in the New York Times, GQ, Pitchfork, New York Magazine, Fantastic Man, and the Village Voice.
Elissa Polls is the head of production for Departures. A producer who typically stays behind the scenes, she has worked with creatives from around the world, helping bring their ideas to life. Polls has over 15 years of production experience and lives in Berkeley, California.
T. Cole Rachel is a Brooklyn-based writer, editor, and teacher with over 20 years of experience working in print and digital media. He is currently an editor-at-large at Departures.
Sophie Mancini is an editor at Departures. Born and raised in New York City, she holds a degree in creative writing from Johns Hopkins University and has a background as a writer in brand and editorial.
Hailey Andresen is the guides editor at Departures. A New York–based writer and editor, she founded the digital lifestyle publication Household Mag and has spent more than a decade in the hospitality industry.
Lisa Lok is the visuals director of Departures. A Brooklyn-based creative, she enjoys collaborating with photographers and illustrators from around the world.
Jess Rotter is a Los Angeles–based illustrator and artist. Rotter’s work has frequently featured in the Washington Post. Her clients range from Natalie Portman to Questlove.
Our editor’s picks for footwear that marries form and function, so you can put in the miles.
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