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Style news and blog articles from The Huffington Post

The Alluring Power Of Leopard Print, In Photos From Across The World (Thu, 27 Apr 2017 17:49:35 -0400)

Leopards are carnivorous cats distinguished by their strength, adaptability and rosette-speckled fur, which acts as easy camouflage in their natural environments. If you’ve ever adorned yourself with some sort of leopard print clothing or accessory, you may have felt a certain power in its furry grip ― a connection to nature, a feline poise, the fearlessness of a predator. 

Haitian-Canadian photographer Émilie Régnier has long been fascinated by the eternally fashionable pattern, for both its history and the almost supernatural powers it endows those who don it.

For her series “Leopard,” the artist traveled to Dakar, Senegal; Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of the Congo; Johannesburg, South Africa; Paris, France; and a small town in Texas, documenting the diverse individuals who overlapped in their soft spot for the soft spots. 

The project began when Régnier was searching for new models in Paris. She encountered a woman there who showed up for a shoot wearing a leopard print boubou ― a long, African dress. “The image of this woman inhabited me for days onwards,” Régnier wrote in a statement to HuffPost. She then realized how frequently leopard print appeared in the world around her. “It was worn everywhere and by everyone,” she said. 

Leopard print has different connotations depending on the time and place in which it appears. In Africa, dating back to the kings under British colonialism, leopard fur equals power, derived from the image of the leopard as “king of the jungle.” A former president of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, the dictator Mobutu Sese Seko, was known for donning a leopard print toque ― a tight fitting hat ― that henceforth associated the animal template with authority. 

One of Régnier’s subjects is a man named Samuel Weidi, who works as a professional Mobutu impersonator. It is undoubtedly the signature hat that makes Weidi’s identity legible, and it almost feels as if the print’s power makes the wearer stand up a bit straighter. 

The photo series introduced Régnier to a variety of individuals who gravitated toward leopard for very different reasons. For the wealthy fashionistas in Paris, leopard had been a sign of luxury since Christian Dior introduced animal print into his 1947 collection, officially dubbing it “haute couture.”

For a tattoo artist named Larry based in Texas, however, leopard print is literally a second skin. The man posed nude for Régnier, his entire body covered in spots thanks to over 1,000 tattoos.

Ultimately, Régnier’s project follows it single motif around the world, documenting the various individuals who, regardless of age, gender, profession or personal style, are drawn to leopard print’s alluring presence. 

Émilie Régnier’sFrom Mobutu to Beyoncé is on view until June 4 at the Bronx Documentary Center. See our previous coverage of her work here.

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15 Mother's Day Gifts For Moms Who Run On Coffee And Wine (Thu, 27 Apr 2017 16:25:48 -0400)

Moms rely on a hell of a lot of grace and strength to get through long days juggling their children’s needs with, well, life. And their kiddos’ sweet cuddles and giggles definitely help, too.

But you know what else keeps moms going? Coffee. And wine. So here are 15 cute and cheeky Mother’s Day gifts for all the thirsty mamas out there. 

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Melania Trump Has Upended The Role Of First Lady In 100 Days (Thu, 27 Apr 2017 15:37:41 -0400)

WASHINGTON ― Nearly 100 days into President Donald Trump’s administration, first lady Melania Trump has been reluctant to embrace her new role, and it’s unclear how she will define what can be a somewhat nebulous, arcane and sexist position.

Just as she avoided involvement in her husband’s campaign, Melania Trump has chosen to remain out of the spotlight as first lady. She and their son Barron continue living at Trump Tower in New York, and reportedly plan to move into the White House this summer once Barron’s school year ends. Her staff remains unfilled, and she has eschewed many ceremonial duties.

This failure to embrace even basic functions has been particularly unusual, according to Kate Andersen Brower, author of First Women: The Grace and Power of America’s Modern First Ladies. Melania Trump’s decision not to immediately move into the White House, for example, is “unprecedented,” Brower said.

Some of Trump’s slowness to fill her staff can be attributed to her lack of involvement in her husband’s campaign. Many first ladies will bring on advisers and staff members who worked closely with them before they entered the White House.

“Even at the very beginning, they have a dozen staffers working for them,” Brower said of previous first ladies. “Because she was barely on the campaign, she didn’t develop those relationships with staffers, and I think that was detrimental.”

Trump hired a communications director only a month ago. Leaving the key post unfilled for the first two months of her husband’s administration was particularly glaring, Brower said. Without someone to coordinate her message, Trump remains mostly unknown to the public, generating further speculation about her.

“She’s like a cipher,” Brower said. “You have to direct that message.”

A full staff could help Trump avoid kerfuffles at otherwise routine events. For instance, she read a passage from a Dr. Seuss book last month to children at a hospital in New York. The event was described by a White House pool reporter, but the White House later issued a statement that appeared to embellish Trump’s remarks and actions. 

Trump has sporadically joined her husband in Washington and at his Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida for ceremonial events, like dinners with foreign leaders. In his wife’s absence, the president has sometimes dispatched his daughter, White House adviser Ivanka Trump, to handle duties that might normally be performed by the first lady.

In February, Melania Trump broke a longstanding tradition that the first lady accompanies the spouse of a visiting foreign leader. Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s wife, Akie, was alone during her visit to Washington. The White House claimed Melania Trump’s absence was the result of a scheduling error with Abe.

Brower called the White House’s handling of the visit “embarrassing.”

“You’re being a rude host, really,” Brower said. “Part of the job of the first lady is to escort spouses, men or women, around Washington, and you kind of just suck it up and do it, even if you don’t want to.”

While some first ladies have spent a large portion of their time away from Washington, “you at least make the effort to say that you live in the White House and that you understand of the responsibility of the position,” Brower said.

Modern first ladies have pressed policy issues that interest them. Laura Bush focused on literacy. Michelle Obama pursued initiatives on wellness, girls’ education and military families.

Brower said it’s not unusual for first ladies to take a while to find their footing and “figure out how they can help.” But for Melania Trump, choosing a policy area could be challenging.

The first lady can pick up the phone and change someone’s life. To not take advantage of it, it seems, to me, like a shame.”
Kate Andersen Brower, author of “First Women: The Grace and Power of America’s Modern First Ladies"

If she were to advocate health and physical fitness, for example, she could expose the administration to controversy, given the president’s long history of denigrating women by talking about their physical appearance.

“These are such innocuous things, but because of her husband, everything is so politically charged,” Brower said. “It’s very hard to find something that doesn’t offend people.”

During her husband’s campaign, Melania Trump pledged that as first lady, she would combat cyberbullying — a promise that immediately drew mockery because of her husband’s frequent Twitter rants. She has yet to follow through.

Last month, military veterans criticized the first lady for not commenting on a scandal involving Marine Corps personnel sharing explicit photos of female service members on social media.

“We are waiting for our first lady to support our women in uniform against continued harassment,” Navy veteran Trina McDonald, a member of the group Common Defense, said in a press release. The group urged Trump to “break her silence and speak up,” according to the Military Times.

But in recent weeks, the first lady appears to have been tiptoeing into her new reality. She has hosted events that have included a women’s empowerment panel and the annual White House Easter Egg Roll, a tradition that some people worried would end under Trump.

On Wednesday, the first lady appeared with the president at a White House event honoring the National Teacher of the Year. On Thursday, she joined him during a visit from Argentina’s President Mauricio Macri and first lady Juliana Awada.

“Maybe she’ll figure it out,” Brower said. “I think she’s caving to the pressure. I think it takes time to realize that you have to live in the White House and make some sacrifices.”

First ladies come under intense scrutiny, often in gendered terms, especially when they become involved in crafting policy.

Hillary Clinton, in particular, faced sharp criticisms throughout her husband’s presidency for having an office in the West Wing and for spearheading the Clinton administration’s failed attempt at health care reform.

Trump’s approach is not without historical analogues. Brower compared her with Bess Truman, who also was reluctant to become first lady and did not like the spotlight.

“I think Melania is bringing us back to the 1950s approach to first lady,” Brower said. “In her actions, she has been traditional.”

Still, her decision to eschew tradition and continue living in New York could be perceived as “strangely feminist,” and a sign of independence, Brower said. 

As she settles into the role, Trump will face unique challenges, Brower said.

“She’s not from the U.S., and I do think that’s part of it,” Brower said. “Growing up in this country, the first lady symbolically is a part of your life, and a part of American culture, and so I think people should give her some slack for that. She didn’t grow up with that, and so in a way, it is a very foreign concept.” 

Further, Michelle Obama was a popular first lady who left “big shoes to fill” in finding creative ways to reach the public, from late-night TV appearances to making viral videos, Brower said.

“You can’t picture yourself having coffee, or in a carpool with Melania Trump,” Brower said. “She’s not relatable in the same way. But clearly, she does not plan to do as much as Michelle Obama or Laura Bush.”

Trump’s distant approach could indicate that the role of the presidential spouse is no longer necessary, Brower suggested.

“I still think it’s important,” Brower added. “You can do a lot of good. The first lady can pick up the phone and change someone’s life. To not take advantage of it, it seems, to me, like a shame.”

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Delicate 'Helix' Tattoos Are The Trend We Didn't Know We Needed (Thu, 27 Apr 2017 15:03:46 -0400)

Between single piercings, double piercings, gauges and cartilage piercings, there are a multitude of ways to deck out your ears. But just when you thought that ear candy had reached peak trendiness, the Instagram gods gift us with a new style. 

Helix tattoos are all the rage on Instagram right now. The delicate tattoos adorn people’s cartilage, giving the appearance of an ear cuff or cartilage ring. It’s a trend so minimal and dainty, even tattoo skeptics will fall in love. 

If you’re looking for a tat that won’t give your parents heart palpitations, consider your problem solved. Check out a selection of our favorite helix tattoo designs below.

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Tess Holliday Shares Empowering Postpartum Message With Just Two Words (Thu, 27 Apr 2017 14:17:46 -0400)

Tess Holliday has a message for other moms out there and it’s all about self-love. 

The plus-size model, who gave birth to her son, Bowie, last June, shared a selfie on Instagram Wednesday while dressed in underwear and a T-shirt with a caption that says it all: “Belly love.”

Belly love @effyourbeautystandards #effyourbeautystandards #postpartumbody #stillfat

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Holliday is a proponent not only of body positivity, but also of keeping it real when it comes to the journey of motherhood. Tears and all. In December, she posted a photo opening up about learning to love her postpartum figure and dealing with the pressures put on women. 

Each day feels like a battle to learn how to love my body postpartum. It's been 6 months, & my stomach is lower, my breasts are a different shape, new stretch marks & I feel like a stranger in my body more than ever. I wasn't anticipating this at all. I'm not used to looking in the mirror & feeling like I don't recognize myself, but sadly that's my reality some days. I debated on whether or not to post this, but I think it's important to be honest about what it's like to be a woman in the media, who recently had a baby & the pressure that's put on new moms to "lose the baby weight". I was fat before, I carried a healthy baby, & guess what, still fat... & THATS OKAY. I have no New Years resolution to lose weight, but only to work on learning my new body & loving & nurturing it. Not a day goes by that Nick doesn't tell me how beautiful I am, but it's not our partners job to lift our spirits, we have to be our own cheerleaders. So that's what I will do, take it day by day. It's a journey, not a race.. & a beautiful one at that. #6monthspostpartum #effyourbeautystandards @effyourbeautystandards

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She has been able to put things into perspective when it comes to ridiculous body standards and her personal happiness. 

“I definitely felt like I had to relearn who I was, and relearn my body and how clothes fit on me,” she told Romper earlier this month. “It felt like everything that kind of made me feel like me was stripped away a bit ... I think trying to lose weight and do all of that after is absolutely ridiculous. [Your children are] only little for so long and even though it’s hard, I think it’s way more important to cherish those moments than it is worrying about how you look or what size you are.”

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This Drag Queen Is Recreating Carrie Bradshaw's Most Iconic Looks (Thu, 27 Apr 2017 11:04:01 -0400)

When New York City resident Dan Clay dressed up as the legendary Carrie Bradshaw from “Sex And The City” last Halloween, he had no idea that he was unleashing a creative force that the internet would absolutely adore.

After posting photos of his look throughout the night, Clay received an outpouring of engagement from fans of the show and “Sex And The City” Instagram accounts.

“All the comments were so so kind, and I still had all these pictures left from our little West Village photo shoot, so I decided to keep it going for a bit,” Clay told HuffPost. “I posted a few more pics, even trying to capture Carrie’s classic narration style. I always thought it would just sort of fade away ― [but] it never did!” 

And thus, Carrie Dragshaw was born.

On the road to love, sometimes you’re left out in the cold. As Aleksandr’s light exhibition opened and the light in our love went out, I couldn’t help but wonder: When you depend on men for warmth, are you destined for frostbite? And if one love leaves you cold, are you brave or crazy to try again? If at first he breaks your heart, cry cry again. But no matter how cold it gets, maybe the best way to bounce back after a break up is to be fabulous. To grab your faux fur, fairy skirt, and, most importantly, fabulous friends who will keep you warm. Because love hurts—but love heals, too. And there’s a light in everyone who’s looking for love. Keep it bright. It’s how the good ones find each other. #CarrieDragshaw

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Maybe men are like rain drops: unpredictable and annoying. As Petrovsky rained on my Paris parade, I started thinking about the stormy weather in my love life. I couldn’t help but wonder: Did every relationship go through good weather and bad? Or was our relationship like a cobblestone road—charming, but a little too bumpy? A wise redhead once said: the sun will come out tomorrow. But sometimes you have to part the clouds yourself. Instead of waiting for Captain Planet, you have to play Mother Nature. After all, a little sunshine can stop a shit storm. Because, like Paris, Petrovsky was romantic and sophisticated—but just not right for me. And that’s OK. Maybe storms are what help you grow before you blossom in the sun. In the meantime, grab your umbrella, put some polka in your dots and dance in the rain. #CarrieDragshaw

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After heading West for a week of work, I was home. To quote another blonde wanderer, L.A. is too hot—too sunny, too sandy, too supermodelly. San Francisco is too cold—all tech, no talk. And I don’t trust a city where you can’t tell the difference between a billionaire, hipster, or homeless person. All hoodie, no Fendi. All flannel, no Chanel. For this Goldilocks, New York is just right. I couldn’t help but wonder: If my roots are so far away, why do I blossom in New York? I guess not all flowers grow in the sun. Some need the shade of skyscrapers, the ballet of crowded sidewalks, dollar slices in Dior, bodega cats and Birkin bags, MoMA with Monet, sunsets with Lady Liberty, the pleasure of 5th Avenue and the pain of Penn Station and most of all: the people-watching—because we might not have much nature, but we’re overflowing with life. So L.A. can keep its sun and San Francisco can have its screens, because I need magic, and I only bloom in New York. #CarrieDragshaw

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For Clay, the creative process of selecting and reimagining iconic Bradshaw looks, and then creating a “Sex And The City” inspired caption for each post, began to serve a number of different purposes in his life. For one, the social media star really started to treasure the joy and positive energy that his Bradshaw looks seemed to bring to people’s lives.

“People kept on saying really kind things about the pictures and the captions (including Patricia Field and SJP, so if that’s not motivation I don’t know what is!),” Clay told HuffPost. “The internet isn’t always full of positivity and love, and this seemed to spread both. Made people smile, gave them a little boost, a reason to connect with friends. It was so cool to have this opportunity to spread a little joy!”

Meanwhile uptown, I was living a teenage dream in a castle on a cloud, high above Central Park. The thing is, when you’re a teenager, you look at adults and see freedom: No Parents. No Rules. But when you’re an adult, you look at teenagers and see freedom: No Bosses. No Bills. I couldn’t help but wonder: When did getting older go from dream to dread? When it comes to growing up, were some of us too chicken to cross the road? Or maybe, every once in a while, you can make the mature adult decision to act like a rebellious adolescent. To serve a giant Kentucky Fried F*ck You to deadlines, diets, dating and the rest of reality. In life, most days you get dressed and conquer the world. So some days you can get stoned and eat from a bucket. You can solve your problems in your Prada mañana. Today, channel your inner Ferris Bueller and put 'em in the f*ck it bucket. Because in a fast-paced city like New York, sometimes you’ve got to hop out of the speedboat and just splash around—even if you might get caught. After all, before a flower can grow, it needs a little pot. #CarrieDragshaw

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Dan also found the Carrie Dragshaw character to be a cathartic release from the pressures and stress of a volatile political climate following the election of President Donald Trump.

“All of this happened right during election time, and I found getting into ‘Carrie’ character to be this really immersive escape,” he continued. “You try thinking about politics while also learning how to apply fake eyelashes! Add to this that it forced me to confront my own insecurities around masculinity – I was sold!... A delightful personal oasis that spreads a little love.”

The sidewalks of New York are full of traffic. But instead of cars we have clothes. Instead of Porsche, Lamborghinis and Little Corvettes we have Prada, Louis Speedies and Fendi Baguettes. But even in a city as crowded as New York, sometimes you walk alone. As I broke free from another break up, I couldn't help but wonder: We spend so much time dating—were we neglecting our most important relationship? We spend all our energy loving purses, dresses, and men—did we have any left to love ourself? What if the secret to being happy in life was hidden on the inside? Maybe self love is like a DIY Gucci purse: It takes a lot of work, and even if it doesn't turn out perfect it still feels fabulous. Because maybe our quirks and flaws make us who we are. After all, the cracks in the ceiling let the light in. The cracks in the sidewalk let the flower grow. And life doesn’t always turn out the way you expect. Sometimes the perfect little black dress…is grey. So I smiled. Because if you can love who you're walking with even when you're walking alone...well that's just fabulous. #CarrieDragshaw

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Fashion Roadkill (Part 1 of 2) In the fashion world, you listen to Anna Wintour, not Mother Nature. Winter is Fall and Fall is next year. Spring is Cruise and Summer is Couture. As I took the runway for my first New York Fashion Week, I started thinking about courage. Sometimes you have to fake it. You have to strut like a leopard even though you feel like scaredy cat. After all, it was too late to say No now. Maybe courage is like a pair of sparkly underwear: bold, beautiful, but usually covered up. Hidden within because showing your sparkle can be scary. I couldn’t help but wonder: How often did our fear of heights stop us from strapping on life's Monolos? Were we so afraid to fall that we didn’t even step on the runway? To be continued... #CarrieDragshaw

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There’s no better city in the world than New York in the spring. Long lazy picnics in Central Park, farmer’s market pretzels in Union Square, freshly planted tulips on Park Avenue. And as flowers bloom, fashion blossoms. Daisies & Dior. Lilies & Lanvin. Gladiolus & Galliano. As I looked at all the flowers opening up, I couldn’t help but wonder: Maybe I could, too. Maybe I could let my heart out of hibernation and open myself up to love. After all, seasons change. Can people? With a spring in my step, I was frozen no more. And the best part is: When your heart blooms, you don’t even have to stop to smell the roses. The flowers follow you. And that’s just fabulous. Because even a New Yorker needs a little nature. #CarrieDragshaw

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They say life's a journey, not a destination. I guess that's why us girls need so many bags. As I stepped into another new relationship, I started thinking about baggage. We all have it. We might try to dress it up in Louis Vuitton luggage or squeeze it into a cute little fanny pack—but even fake Gucci carries real emotions. I couldn't help but wonder: If everyone has baggage, why do we try so hard to hide it? And if we're so comfortable baring our skin, why do we hide our hearts? Maybe true love comes when someone sees it all (even the ugly duffle you hide under your bed) and loves you anyway. Someone who loves you more the more they see. Who sees you when you’re scared, anxious, angry, or even just sad, and sticks around to make sure you learn to love your authentic self and never try to be anything else. To make sure you love you as much as they do. And to make sure your shoes always, always match your baggage. #CarrieDragshaw _______________________ Let’s spread a little love today. Tag your besties—the ones whose baggage matches yours—and tell them how much you love them.  CD&DC

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Clay has no plans to stop his Carrie Dragshaw character anytime soon, and he hopes that she continues to bring people around the world happiness and solace during uncertain political times.

“I love the idea that the pictures could brighten someone’s day,” Clay said. “Life isn’t always rainbows and butterflies, and just this tiny opportunity to make someone smile – that’s reason enough to prance around the Plaza in imitation Dior. I especially love the idea that the captions could connect with people. There were moments in ‘Sex and the City’ that were really empowering—preaching independence, self-confidence, friendship, and fabulosity. I really appreciate the opportunity, even on a small scale, to provide that kind of uplift and perspective.”

Head here to follow Dan Clay on Instagram and keep up with all of Carrie Dragshaw’s adventures.

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Meet The Woman Who Does Oprah's Hair (Thu, 27 Apr 2017 10:36:32 -0400)


Nicole Mangrum always knew hairstyling was in her future. “As a little girl I carried a brush and a comb everywhere,” she says. “I styled anyone who’d let me.” All that practice (and a stint in beauty school) led to her own salon in Chicago, which she ran for 14 years. Three years ago, she started thinking about her next chapter. Not long after, Oprah’s longtime hairstylist Andre Walker was looking to retire. He asked a friend of Nicole’s if he knew anyone who might be able to replace him. “When Andre called, it was literally a dream come true,” Nicole says. “I’d made a vision board years ago; one goal was to work for Oprah. But I never thought we’d be working this close!” Oprah invited Nicole to do her hair for a couple of SuperSoul Sunday episodes. “I was beyond nervous,” Nicole admits. After seven months of try-outs, the job was hers. She joined Oprah as her full-time hairstylist in July 2015.

As she was about to take off with Oprah for her first trip to South Africa, Nicole revealed the best of her accumulated hair wisdom...

What are the toughest hair challenges for black women?
Dryness and breakage caused by overprocessing and heat tools. With natural hair, it’s hard to find the perfect cocktail of products to keep your hair moisturized but not too oily. A lot of women do protective styling in braids or weaves to give their hair a rest from treatments or heat tools—or when they just don’t want to deal with managing it every day. But protective styling can put stress on hair and damage follicles, leading to thinning or even hair loss.

What are the best solutions—and how do you keep Oprah’s hair looking so perfect?
There are three key words for maintaining healthy hair: moisture, moisture, and moisture. Sulfates can be drying, so look for sulfate-free shampoos and conditioners, and creamy formulas with oils such as coconut and jojoba. Co-washing, or cleansing with a conditioner that contains a small amount of gentle nondetergent cleansers, can also keep hair hydrated. Use a deep conditioning mask with oils at least once a week—Oprah gets a deep conditioning twice a week—and a heat-protecting spray when styling with a hot tool. (I always use a heat-protecting spray on Oprah’s hair when we blow-dry it.)

If you wear braids or a weave, tell your stylist if it feels too tight—which, by the way, won’t make it last longer and can damage the hair follicles. And even these styles must be washed and conditioned at least once a week.

When you’re feeling frustrated about managing your hair, see a stylist for a consultation. She can help you figure out the products you need, which can be helpful if you, like many women, have a mix of textures. And lots of my clients, after my consultation, have found videos on YouTube to be a terrific way to learn the how-tos of styling.

By the Numbers

70 pounds: Weight of the bag Nicole carries her styling tools and products in.

5 minutes: Shortest time she’s spent styling Oprah’s hair—in this case, a bun.

15: Number of brushes and combs Nicole brings to a photo shoot


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Street Artist Uses Awesome Spray Paint Skills To Unveil HuffPost's New Logo (Thu, 27 Apr 2017 07:20:27 -0400)

A British street artist just gave HuffPost a helping hand in unveiling its new logo.

Jody Thomas celebrated the HuffPost rebrand launch on Tuesday by incorporating the new emblem into one of his pieces in Bristol, southwest England.

He spent hours meticulously spray-painting one of his signature, photo-realistic hands onto a wall in the Bedminster neighborhood ― and finished it off with a stencil of HuffPost’s logo.

We captured the entire mesmerizing process in the above time-lapse video and live-streamed the final 20 minutes of the project via Facebook:

The 43-year-old artist braved varying chilly weather conditions of sunshine, wind and rain to complete his work. But he said, “I really enjoyed the whole day.” 

The Facebook broadcast was delayed for 20 minutes as heavy showers struck the area. Luckily it cleared up soon after, giving the wall sufficient time to dry and Thomas enough of a gap to finish the final 10 percent of the piece.

“In good old British fashion, we were almost scuppered by the weather,” joked the Bristol-based artist. “But at least we didn’t get caught in the biblical hail storm that struck afterwards.”

Hot off the press today I did a #facebooklive painting of the new @huffpost brand on #northstreet #bristol thanks to @leemoran @upfest and @weareplaster pic courtesy of @streetart_bristol #jodybristol #jodyart #jodyartist #huffingtonpost #huffpostgram #huffpost

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Thomas began painting at the city’s celebrated Barton Hill youth center around 1988 — alongside other notable artists such as Inkie, Cheo and the world-famous (but still elusive) Banksy.

He stepped away from the scene around 1990 to study and work in graphic design. But Thomas returned to street art in the late 2000s after being misquoted in a book that said he was coming back. He’s since exhibited his work in New York City and London.

Thomas will feature alongside 300 other painters from more than 40 countries at “Upfest” — Europe’s largest live street art and graffiti festival — in the Bedminster area from July 29 to 31. 

You can check out more of his work on either of his websites or his Instagram, Facebook and Twitter accounts.

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College Student Says She Was Kicked Out Of A Gym For Wearing A Workout Top (Wed, 26 Apr 2017 17:07:32 -0400)

A sophomore at the College of Charleston was recently told to leave the school’s gym because of her tank top.

On April 19, Sarah Villafañe posted a photo of herself on Facebook wearing yoga pants and a cropped, black tank top ― what appears to be a rather normal gym outfit. According to Villafañe’s post, however, the College of Charleston gym staff did not think her outfit was up to gym standards. 

“I’ve worn this same outfit all day. Went to 3 classes and spoke personally with each of my professors today and they didn’t have a problem,” Villafañe wrote. “But when I walked into the gym they asked me to put on a different shirt. Obviously I didn’t bring an extra shirt to the gym and wasn’t about to wear my flannel while working out. So I just said mhm ok and went about my work out pretty pissed off that they even asked me to change.” 

Villafañe claims that a few minutes later, the gym manager approached her and asked her to put a shirt on. She recalls that that the manager said she’d have to leave if she didn’t change. 

“I bought this outfit to work out in because it’s COMFORTABLE. What is the issue?” Villafañe wrote. “Why can’t I work out in this outfit?”

Read Villafañe’s full Facebook post below. 

As of Wednesday afternoon, the post had received over 1,000 likes and 500 comments. 

Villafañe later added an update to her post, writing that the gym staff contacted her and clarified that they made her leave for “sanitary concerns.” “They never made those sanitary concerns clear when they asked me to change,” Villafañe wrote. “They told me I need ‘more coverage’ and nothing more.” 

A spokesperson for the College of Charleston, Mike Robertson, told TODAY that many skin diseases can be contracted at gyms

“Because of this possibility, the College of Charleston and many other colleges and universities follow best practices that require people in the gym to wear a full shirt while working out in order to minimize skin exposure to possible infectious agents,” Robertson told TODAY. 

According to Villafañe, there are no dress code requirements on display at the gym or online. The only sign in the gym that addresses a dress code reads: “Athletic wear must be worn,” Villafañe wrote on Facebook. 

“Many people have told me that they have seen girls wearing similar outfits to mine in the [College of Charleston] gym, as well as men wearing muscle tees that expose their midriffs,” she told TODAY. “It is interesting to me that the men I have seen wearing jeans in the gym (a quite obvious violation of their one dress code rule, ‘Athletic attire must be worn’) were not bothered or kicked out for not abiding by the dress code rules.”

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Patagonia Threatens To Sue White House Over National Monument Order (Wed, 26 Apr 2017 16:59:29 -0400)

Patagonia on Wednesday threatened to sue the White House over an executive order that instructs the Department of the Interior to review any national monuments designated since 1996. 

The high-end outdoor apparel retailer, which has been embroiled in a bitter fight over the future of two monuments declared in the waning days of Barack Obama’s presidency, slammed President Donald Trump, insisting that he lacks the authority to rescind designations by his predecessors.

“A president does not have the authority to rescind a National Monument. An attempt to change the boundaries ignores the review process of cultural and historical characteristics and the public input,” Patagonia CEO Rose Marcario said in a statement. “We’re watching the Trump administration’s actions very closely and preparing to take every step necessary, including legal action, to defend our most treasured public landscapes from coast to coast.”

The retailer began stepping up its political activity just before the November election, spending $1 million on a get-out-the-vote campaign and completely shutting down its operations on Election Day. After the election, it donated all $10 million of its Black Friday sales to environmental causes.

In January, things started to get heated. A month earlier, the Obama administration had set aside 1.35 million acres in Utah, including sacred tribal lands, to form Bears Ears National Monument. Republican state officials condemned the move as a federal land grab and urged the incoming Trump administration to revoke the designation, made under the 1906 Antiquities Act. 

In response, Patagonia vowed to “fight with everyone we have” to preserve the new national monument. In February, the company pulled out of a major outdoor retailer trade show in Salt Lake City to boycott legislation signed by Utah Gov. Gary Herbert (R), formally petitioning the White House to undo the designation.

On Wednesday, Trump responded by ordering Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke to review any monument created since Jan. 1, 1996.

“I’ve spoken with many state and local leaders, a number of them here today who care very much about preserving our land, and who are gravely concerned about this massive federal land grab,” Trump said at the signing. “And now we’re going to free it up, which is what should have happened in the first place.”

No president has ever revoked a national monument under the Antiquities Act. The statute doesn’t explicitly bar the president from altering a predecessor’s designation, but no White House has done even that. Legal research suggests that presidents can adjust, but not outright abolish, a prior designation.

The order is part of a larger fight playing out over the future of public lands. In January, House Republicans made it easier to sell off public lands by voting to change how the government calculates the cost of transferring those parcels to states or private developers. The change could put 3.3 million acres ― an area nearly the size of Connecticut ― up for auction. 

In Montana, where the federal government controls 29 percent of all acreage, public land access has emerged as a top issue in the special election to fill the seat in the U.S. House of Representatives that Zinke vacated to become interior secretary. 

“As stewards of America’s federal public lands, the Trump administration has an obligation to protect these most special wild places,” Marcario said. “Unfortunately, it seems clear they intend to do the opposite.”

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Mom And 6 Sons Grow Hair Out, Donate 17 Feet Of It To Kids In Need (Wed, 26 Apr 2017 16:15:04 -0400)

Phoebe Kannisto and her six sons made their latest haircuts a true (and charitable) family affair after deciding to grow their hair out together and donate it.

Kannisto’s oldest son, Andre, is 10 years old. She also has 8-year-old identical twin sons named Silas and Emerson; 5-year-old fraternal triplets named Herbie, Reed and Dexter; and a 2-year-old daughter named Marah Taylor.

On Monday, Kannisto and her six sons visited a local salon, Hizair Hair Salon, to have their hair cut. In total, the family got rid of 17 feet of hair and donated it to Children with Hair Loss, an organization that provides hair replacements for kids with medically related hair loss

Kannisto told HuffPost the motivation behind the haircuts was personal for the whole family. 

“Three years ago, my friend lost her son to cancer,” she said. “He was a twin and very close in age to my twins. On the first anniversary of his passing, my three oldest boys donated their hair in his memory. Since their donation two years ago, our lives have continued to be touched by cancer. It’s everywhere. My boys want to help, and donating their hair is how they do it.”

Kannisto, who lives outside of Buffalo, New York, with her family, has been donating her hair on and off since she was a teenager. Before this month, her last donation was in 2014. Her three oldest sons participated for the first time in 2015. The donation a few days ago marked the first time her triplets were able to contribute. Kannisto told HuffPost they waited until everyone’s hair reached the minimum length for donations before they all got their haircuts. 

“Obviously, everyone’s hair grows at different rates,” she said. “So it took quite some time for everyone to be ready.”

Andre grew his hair out for a year, the twins grew their hair for almost two years and the triplets grew their hair for five years. They’re already planning their next donation, too, since their little sister wants to participate. Her hair wasn’t long enough to donate this time, but she was able to sit in the salon and watch as her brothers got their haircuts. 

“She watched in awe,” Kannisto said. “[Her brothers] are great role models.”

Kannisto told HuffPost Hizair Hair Salon brought the family in after hours and refused to accept payment for the haircuts.

“They insisted on donating their time since we were donating our hair,” she said.

She said her sons have been teased a lot for their long hair since they decided to grow it out and donate it. 

“One son has been teased more than the others,” she said. “He and I have had many tear-filled conversations over the last several months. He explains the process of hair donation to his peers, and some of them just don’t get it.”

Luckily, her sons have developed “a thick skin” and ignore the criticism, knowing they’re helping others in need. Kannisto said she’s “so proud” of her boys and thinks that their mission is “amazing.”

“I love that they want to help other children,” she told HuffPost. “They’re already making predictions on how long it will take them to grow their hair out to donate again.”

The HuffPost Parents newsletter, So You Want To Raise A Feminist, offers the latest stories and news in progressive parenting. 

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These Epic GIFs Show 'Romy And Michele' Was About Friendship AND Fashion (Wed, 26 Apr 2017 16:00:21 -0400)

Can you believe it’s been 20 years since Romy and Michele interpretive danced their way into our hearts?

”Romy and Michele’s High School Reunion,” the quirky comedy about two friends who are equal parts Mary and Rhoda, was released on April 25, 1997. Lisa Kudrow and Mira Sorvino are the film’s stars, but their outfits were main characters, too. 

Fashion is threaded throughout the film and the duo’s friendship. Whether it was their “Vogue-approved” handmade reunion outfits or quirky workout gear costume designer Mona May said would have been made by Romy and Michele themselves, these pals communicated through clothing as much as their absurd, highly quotable dialogue.  

Their closets were colorful treasure troves.

Their accessories were on point.

Their workout clothes were perfect.

Their road-tripping attire was second to none...

...and so was their partywear.

Their final reunion looks put everyone else to shame...

...but they looked totally babely in business casual, too. 

Even their laundry outfits were fun.

On the 20th anniversary of this fun-loving film, grab your bestie, fold some scarves and remember, you don’t have to have invented post-it notes to be total fashion icons. Just be yourselves. 

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18 Adorable Mother's Day Gifts For Moms Who Love To Travel (Wed, 26 Apr 2017 15:59:47 -0400)

Know a mom who’s always on the move? Luckily, there are plenty of Mother’s Day options to satisfy her wanderlust. 

From practical options like luggage tags and travel journals to accessories like jewelry, the gifts below are for moms who always have their next destination in mind. 

Here are 18 Mother’s Day gifts for moms who love to travel:

The HuffPost Parents newsletter, So You Want To Raise A Feminist, offers the latest stories and news in progressive parenting. 

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Michelle Obama Won't Stop Encouraging Kids To Pursue College (Wed, 26 Apr 2017 15:12:59 -0400)

Former first lady Michelle Obama, continuing a tradition she began while in the White House, will host a “college signing day” on MTV next month, celebrating graduating high school seniors pursuing college, university or professional training programs.

Obama has hosted a college signing day event every year since 2014 as part of her Reach Higher initiative, which aims to make higher education more accessible. Her efforts have often involved creative ways of reaching young people, including a rap video.

This year’s event will be held at the famed Public Theater in New York on May 5, four days after the deadline for students to commit to a college or university to which they have been admitted.

The event, which MTV will air on its Facebook page, will be hosted by singer Nick Cannon, the network said Wednesday. It will feature a diverse group of famous guests, including comedian Billy Eichner, model Bella Hadid, chef Carla Hall, former Rep. Gabby Giffords (D-Ariz.), “Hamilton” star Renée Elise Goldsberry, actor Michael B. Jordan, The Roots drummer Questlove, and “Good Morning America” host Robin Roberts.

Obama has continued working on education issues after leaving the White House in January. She made a surprise visit to a public school in Washington, where she and the former first family live, and collaborated with Civic Nation, a nonprofit that says it focuses on “innovative engagement and awareness initiatives.”

Celebrating the beauty and diversity of our country on this #InternationalWomensDay with some of the many fierce and promising girls here at DC's Cardozo Education Campus. I loved visiting this school because it tells the American story in so many ways. Three years ago, Cardozo established its International Academy with only 150 students, but today it boasts nearly 400 who are thriving in and out of the classroom. By embracing young immigrants and their diverse cultures and contributions, Cardozo is a model for our entire country. The girls I met with today are ready to take on the world. We’ve just got to make sure that the world is ready for them.

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11 Beauty Products Flight Attendants Swear By (Wed, 26 Apr 2017 14:54:37 -0400)

Looking pulled-together at work is a bit more challenging for flight attendants than for those who have to do it at the average desk job. Not only do in-flight employees face early wakeup calls, long days and jet lag, but they also have to maintain their looks at 35,000 feet, where the air is drier, the lighting is rough and the changes in pressure can throw bodily systems for a loop.

How do they stay so glamorous?!

We asked flight attendants for their style tips, and five factors quickly emerged as key to a polished in-flight appearance. Although passengers are by no means required to dress up, these cabin crew habits can help anyone who wants to look fly in the sky (or upon landing, for that matter). 

1. A stellar smile

Smiling is part of a flight attendant’s job, of course, and many female cabin crew members are required to wear lipstick as part of their uniform. Red is their go-to color for a reason, according to Elizabeth Upshaw, a former JetBlue flight attendant. “Try a red, and you’ll be surprised how much it helps you look rested and ready to go,” she said. “Red lipstick also helps your teeth appear whiter and makes your smile dazzle.”

“I keep [my smile] beaming with activated charcoal tooth polish by Carbon Coco.” ― Jay Robert of Fly Guy

“I’ll usually hop in the lav and throw on some more matte liquid lipstick. My favorite are Too Faced mattes, they’re phenomenal and stay all day.” ― Emily Jones, Frontier Airlines

“I know so many flight attendants who swear by LipSense. You apply at the beginning of the day, and it lasts through my four-leg days. I love that it comes with a moisturizing gloss that I can swipe on during the day.” ― Elizabeth Upshaw, formerly of JetBlue 

2. Long-lasting primers and creams

A flight attendant’s shift can last up to 14 hours, so long-lasting makeup is key.

“I recommend using a good primer to help your makeup last throughout the day. My favorite is NYX First Base.”
 ― Ebony Christina of Fly Girl’s Guide

“I use Urban Decay’s ‘All Nighter’ spray. That keeps my makeup seamless and perfect for the day. It keeps it from melting off.” ― Emily Jones, Frontier Airlines

”I always have on a pore minimizer BB cream. Just a small layer of something on my skin protects it from all of the contaminates in the air!” ― Katie Taylor, flight attendant with a major airline

“My favorite hack for glowing, hydrated skin is the Translucent Bronzing Tint by Dr. Hauschka.” ― Jay Robert of Fly Guy

3. Concealer

The male flight attendants we surveyed were big fans of concealer. 

Boots No7 rapid revival eye roll-on for men is refreshing, cooling and great for getting rid of the bags under your eyes.” ― Dustin Anderson of Flight Crew Life

”Before landing, hit the under eyes with a concealer from Dr. Hauschka.” ― Jay Robert of Fly Guy

4. A hydrating facial spray

“Many of the Emirates cabin crew use a hydrating spray during flight – they can be applied over makeup and give skin an instant boost of freshness,” said flight attendant Carmen Tejeda. When reapplying makeup, she said, a spray “stops touch-ups from looking cakey.”

“I travel with Evian facial spray.” ― Flight attendant who asked to remain anonymous

“I always have Mario Badescu’s rose water facial spray during flights to add moisture.” ― Christina Tomyo, Spirit Airlines

5. Water

They’ve said it before, and they’ll say it again: Almost every flight attendant we surveyed mentioned hydration as the core of their in-flight routine. 

“The key to staying refreshed while flying is to drink PLENTY of water. It’s recommended to drink at least one cup of water for every hour of flight.” ― Ebony Christina of Fly Girl’s Guide

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