Perfect Summer day in NYC with Pantene

I believe there are more things to do in NYC than any other place in the world. The city is bustling with culture, history, fashion and food and over the last few years of living here and experiencing it all, I've compiled what my perfect day in the city would look like. 

While I will be working full-time this summer, I have big plans to get out on the weekend and explore and adventure to the fullest. NYC is so alive with activities during the summer, but the downside is the extreme temperatures that come with the season. The heat and humidity wreak havoc on my hair and by the end of a long day out, it's typically flat and lifeless. Something that has helped to combat the dreaded heat is Pantene's new in-shower foam conditioner. The secret is that you can apply the product root to tip to ensure every inch of your hair is nourished and left feeling voluminous and soft! I start the day out by using shampoo and then Pantene’s Daily Moisture Renewal in-shower Foam Conditioner as my daily shower routine. After doing my makeup, styling my hair once dry and picking out a great outfit, I'm ready for a long day in the heat. 

I typically like to start out a day by going to one of my favorite brunch spots. The one pictured here is La Pecora Bianca but my other top picks include Root & Bone, Bluestone Lane, Rosemary's and Seamore's. While many people opt for a boozy brunch with bottomless mimosas, I tend to just drink coffee as alcoholic drinks make me feel exhausted and make it hard to carry on with a busy day.

The day is not complete without a little shopping (window shopping included). I love to pop in and out of my favorite stores to look at new arrivals as well as find brand new stores! It's so easy to do this in NYC because almost all brands that have a presence in the United States have a store location here. My favorite areas to shop are 5th Ave (near Flatiron), SoHo and the Upper West Side (a newly discovered treasure trove of stores). 

A perfect day would include a visit to at least one cultural experiences. This could be a museum or some sort of pop-up experience. The Met is always one of my favorites because there are always new exhibits and the museum is so big, you could spend the entire day wandering around. There's always something new to see!

A couple of other things not pictured here would be visiting a rooftop bar or watching the sunset while walking along the water. What would your perfect day in NYC consist of? Let me know in the comments!

NYC Restaurant Diaries: Part 2

I made the first edition to this post last summer and it seemed to be a huge hit! So, without further adieu, I give you part 2. 

1. Ladybird

I'm not against vegan food or anything, but I don't think I would ever choose to eat it on my own accord – until now. Emily brought me to this East Village spot for the game changing interior decor (aka the perfect photo-op), but we soon learned that the food was just as show stopping as the aesthetics. We ordered and split the avocado, baby corn and sweet potato dishes. 

2. Rosemary's

A spacious, yet quaint italian restaurant in the West Village, Rosemary's has become a go-to brunch and lunch spot. My favorite meal I've had here so far was the Fusilli Alla Napoletana. It was a full on flavor explosion in my mouth and what's better than topping pasta with creamy and delicious burrata cheese? Unlike many of the no-reservation, tiny restaurants in the West Village, Rosemary's is huge and takes reservations so you never have to worry about not getting a table immediately! 

3. Eden Local

Funny story – Emily and I discovered Eden Local through inadvertently going to a food blogger brunch back in December. Although the location is super random (Hell's Kitchen), this restaurant's brunch selection was absolutely incredible. Everything we tried was delicious but the best few dishes were the shakshuka, croque madam, avocado toast and brioche french toast.

4. Rosie's

This East Village Mexican spot has the best margaritas and tacos! The ambiance is great for a Friday/Saturday night dinner because it is fun and trendy. I had the al pastor and pescado tacos and both were amazing – I'm dying to go back one weekend morning to try the brunch menu! 

5. 1803

1803, a New Orleans inspired spot in TriBeCa, is one of the most underrated restaurant I've ever been to in NYC. It had one of the cutest interiors I've ever seen and the food was impeccable. Maybe I'm bias because I love southern food probably more than most people up north, but experiencing this very authentic southern restaurant was like finding in a diamond in the rough. NYC doesn't have nearly enough contemporary southern restaurants! I had the fishcake benedict served with hashbrowns and it was heavenly. I love how they added a chipotle element to the hollandaise sauce – it added a unique, creole kick.

6. Maman

If you want a good pic for the 'gram while simultaneously getting a delicious, contemporary, American brunch, this is the place to go. Every square inch of this restaurant is aesthetic perfection right down to the beautiful blue and white china dishes the food is served on. Another great aspect of this restaurant is that there are several locations – TriBeCa, SoHo (the one I've been to), NoMad, Meatpacking and Greenpoint! During my brunch visit, I had the fried egg sandwich with bacon jam, avo and tomato.

Most Instagramable Wall in NYC

There are plenty of Instagramable spots in NYC, but my favorite photo-ops are the murals that pop-up around the city. Yumi Kim really outdid themselves when they painted the side of their Lower East Side store (AND the trash bins that lined it) with this dreamy, pastel flower mural. If you aren't familiar with Yumi Kim, it's an American, contemporary fashion brand who's claim to fame are the beautiful and intricate floral prints they incorporate into all their pieces. Murals are a very popular marketing tactic in NYC right now. I hope more brands jump on board with this trend – more photo-ops for me! Side note: you have no idea how disgusting the ground and area around the photo frame was. One trash bin was missing a lid and there was litter covering the ground. It's amazing how much can be concealed when you strategically crop a photo! 

Lets talk outfit: I recently purchased these pants for around $55 and have gotten more than my money's worth out of them. They are lightweight so they make the perfect summer work pant. Another great aspect is the removable belt. It really multiplies the amount of tops you can pair with the pants as some tops look better with a synched waist and others look better without. If I want to tuck a shirt in, I'll utilize the belt, but if I'm wearing a shirt that looks better untucked, I'll leave the belt behind. 

Top: Forever 21 | Pants: BB Dakota | Shoes: Sole Society | Bag: Poppy & Sage 

Life Update

The last couple months have been an absolute whirlwind. SO much has changed in the past few months that I kind of feel like I'm living a whole new life in a way. I'm excited to share with y'all the details of what I mean by that in this post!

Moving/new apartment - The craziest and most stressful part about the last few months has been the moving process. After a year of living in the Financial District, I decided that I really wanted my own room and that constituted a move. While I LOVE FiDi, you don't get a lot of bang for your buck down there so my new roommate, Alianne, and I focused our search on the Upper West Side, Upper East Side and Hell's Kitchen. Thankfully, we only had to look at about 5 apartments before finding the one we really loved and signing the lease. The winner was a 2 bedroom apartment on the Upper West Side only a block away from Central Park!

Of course, after signing the lease, the next step was packing everything up. This part wasn't AS stressful for me as it would be for others because I don't really own much furniture. I was really stressed out about moving day and didn't sleep well for the week leading up to it because I was so nervous. I can't exactly explain why but I am definitely the type of person to get irrational anxiety about situations like that. Moving day went 100 times smoother and was much less stressful than I expected because I had an amazing moving company, Roadway, to do the job for me. To say my team of Roadway movers were kind, efficient and courteous would be an understatement. They truly took all the stress out of the day and made the process of moving so easy and seamless. Moving in NYC is debatably way more stressful and difficult than moving anywhere else, so I highly recommend hiring a trustworthy and outstanding company. If you guys have a move coming up, you should definitely use my code 'kate' to get 10% off of Roadway's moving services!

Settling into the new apartment was way more stressful than I expected it to be. It has taken so long to unpack and my bank account is bleeding because of how much new stuff I've had to buy for it. I upgraded from a twin to a full-size bed during this move and the new bed, alone, cost upwards of $700 because of how many components go into it (frame, boxspring, mattress, mattress pad, mattress cover, bed skirt, sheets, duvet insert, duvet cover, new pillows). Complaining aside, I am SO happy with the way that my decor is turning out and can't wait to share the decoration process hopefully soon! The bulk of settling in is done and I'm finally in a much more peaceful state of mind, which is great.

Another exciting aspect of this move is my 3rd new roommate – Alianne's dog named Winnie! She's a mini Yorkie and probably the smallest dog I've ever seen in my life. I'll definitely be sure to share more photos of her soon. I've wanted to live with a dog for so long and I'm so happy it's finally happening! Dogs bring so much added warmth and happiness to a home.

Memorial Day Weekend trip to the Hamptons - If you follow me on social media, you probably saw that I went to the Hamptons a few weekends ago! A bunch of my blogger friends and I rented an airbnb house in East Hampton and went out there Friday through Monday. While it was a pricey trip (everything is so expensive out there, especially during a holiday), it was so much fun and a much needed, relaxing break from my moving process.

New Summer Internship - I'm so happy to say that I am interning full-time this summer at Brooks Brothers' corporate office! I am on the social media team there and at the time of writing this, I just finished up my first week. Everything is going great so far and I'm already learning a lot. Bonus: I LOVE my co-workers, they're so fun and have been such a joy to work with. This is my first time working a Mon-Fri, 9AM-5PM type of job. It's going well so far and hopefully it will stay that way. I want to speak more on the subject of getting an internship, interning in the fashion industry and my personal experience with interning. Once I have more insight under my belt from this internship, I want to write some blog posts about this topic at the end of the summer. If you are interested in this, please send in your questions by leaving a comment or contacting me through social media!

The Best and Worst Parts of Living In NYC

I get a lot of questions relating to my favorite and least favorite parts of living in NYC, especially from people who are considering moving here. Of course, everyone's personality and situation is different so these are my subjective opinions, but I hope this gives you all who are interested a raw and honest view of what it is like to live in NYC. 


There is always something to do - 

if you are someone who gets bored easily and/or feels like a waste of space doing nothing all day, this city is the perfect place for you. There are always festivals, concerts, pop-ups and events. In an environment that has so much happening and such a large variety of people, you'll end up falling into the most random and interesting experiences and come out of them with the best stories! It truly is the city where anything can happen. If you move here, it is unlikely that you will ever be on your deathbed regretting not living your life to the fullest (this is definitely something I've worried about in the past).

Amazing food - 

I am the BIGGEST foodie and know that I am in the best city possible to be that way. I have a 2 page Word document of restaurants I want to go to and every time I cross one off the list, I feel like I add two more. It's not just avocado toast and other trendy, expensive food (yes, I do buy into the hype of this type of food), it is truly unique and inventive concoctions that you literally could not find anywhere else (until it gets copied or the restaurant expands to other cities). Are you addicted to those Facebook restaurant videos? I bet you that 80%+ of them are featuring NYC restaurants.

Gorgeous scenery everywhere -

I am a sucker for a beautiful sunset and love being surrounded by pretty and interesting landscapes. I grew up not having any large bodies of water within 2 hours from my house so living walking distance to two huge rivers is an absolute dream for me! It's easy to take advantage of all the amazing views, too, with so many public rooftops! Chances are you will also live in a building/have a friend who lives in a building with an accessable rooftop. What's amazing to me is that every different neighborhood of Manhattan has a vastly different scenery and mood. The West Village is charming and quaint, the Upper East is elegant and proper, SoHo is swanky and trendy, etc. In other words, there are so many cool and different things to see within several blocks of each other.

Motivating environment -

People move to NYC to pursue their dreams and work tirelessly to achieve them. Being surrounded by such motivated people inspires you to work hard and reach for your wildest dreams. If I went to college at a state school in a college town, I'm 95% sure I would have quit my blog and settled for a less competitive career field. There's absolutely nothing wrong with state schools, but I feel like the environment wouldn't be motivating enough to keep me, personally, focused on my goals.


It's expensive -

Everything, I mean EVERYTHING is more expensive in NYC. Looking at price differences individually may not always seem like a huge deal, but it adds up quickly. It is true that you will pay $1,000+ per month to live in a shoebox sized room. You'll actually have to pay closer to $2,000+ to live in a somewhat reasonably sized room. That's a pretty skeptical view, but there are always exceptions to that statement. You can also sacrifice certain things (living in a building with amenities, living in a central part of town, living close to a subway stop, etc.) for more space and a lower cost. But at the end of the day, it's hard to have it all unless you are rich. Chances are, though, that if you live in NYC, you'll be so busy that you won't be spending much time in your apartment anyways!

Having to walk everywhere -

One of the things I miss most about home is being able to drive. Taking the subway/walking in the Spring and Fall is actually wonderful because the weather is mild and the scenery is beautiful. Taking the subway/walking in the Summer and Winter can be absolutely brutal, though. Headed to an event where you want to look nice? Forget it. In the summer, you'll show up a sweaty mess and in the winter you will show up with windswept hair, red cheeks from the cold and possibly soaked in melted snow. If you want to avoid this, you'll have to take a cab/Uber for $20+. The long and brutal winters also make it harder to dress for fashion rather than function. In the middle of the winter, when it's snowing and 5 degrees Fahrenheit, it's hard to motivate yourself to wear anything but a 5 inch thick parka and snow boots. I know everyone in the North/Midwest fall victim to harsh winters, but at least you guys have cars! When buying shoes now, they can't be anything less than extremely comfortable because I know I will be miserable walking around in them if they aren't. One positive thing about all the walking, though, is that you get lots of fresh air, enjoy your surroundings and it's easy to stay in shape!

It's a rat race -

The stereotype is true - New York City is a rat race. The majority of NYC inhabitants move here to pursue big dreams and big dreams require a big drive. You will constantly be surrounded by people who hardly sleep a wink because they are so busy working and will go to extreme lengths to get what they want. While sometimes these people can really motivate you to be your best, they may also make you question your entire existence and make you feel like a total failure in comparison (they do that to me, at least).

Dating sucks -

My mom sent me some statistic from an article she read that single women outnumber single men in NYC 1 to 5. That statistic alone makes your odds of finding a beau slim. However, what makes it worse is that hookup culture in NYC is rampant and very few men under the age of 30 want a serious relationship. There are a lot of theories on why this is the case. I personally believe it is because there are too many distractions here. Too many women, too much partying, too much of a mindset that "there's always something better out there." People are also hyper-focused on their career and can't be bothered to make a time commitment to love. Dating app culture doesn't help either. 

In conclusion, my number of cons is larger than my number of pros but the pros still outweigh the cons. I truly love living here, but I definitely do not plan on living in the city forever. In fact, I know very few people who plan on living in NYC long term. I've personally never heard someone say that they want to raise a family and grow old here. Truth is, most people get exhausted from living in the hustle and bustle of the city day in and day out and end up moving to the tri-state area (New Jersey, Long Island and Connecticut). This allows them to live a bit more leisurely but still commute into the city to work. Who knows what the future holds for me, but I could definitely see myself doing this down the road! I never want to live too far from NYC as it holds a huge piece of my heart.