• Meet the Women Behind Seoul’s Coolest Concept Shop

    On a secluded side street in Seoul’s Cheongdam, removed from the neighborhood’s main drag, lies a glimmering jewel box of a shop that’s a full-on fashion dream: lemon yellow Vita Kin vyshyvankas, their tassels embroidered with black thread; a butter-soft Forte Couture leather jacket, the words Mr. Fringe hand-painted on the back. It’s here, at Rare Market, that an incomparably chic duo has curated a treasure trove of clothes that are changing the way Korean girls approach fashion.

    images:plus size formal dresses

    The day that I visit, the team is busy preparing the launch of The Volon, a line of fringed and furred bags, for which Russian street style star and entrepreneur Miroslava Duma will fly in from Moscow. Winding my way past the botanic displays, I find cofounders Dami Kwon and Jessica Jung, two longtime friends who opened Rare Market in 2014 to bring more obscure, cult designers to Korea—hence the name Rare, which was (fun fact) suggested by Kwon’s younger brother, G-Dragon, who helped make the store a major K-pop destination.

    Photographed by Alex Finch

    “In Korea, women tend to shop for what’s cute, or what’s lovely—that’s how they think a lot—but as you can see, our shop isn’t like that,” Jung explains, gesturing to the racks of Jacquemus and Marques ’ Almeida around her. “There are already so many people in Korea who love fashion here, who might want to discover more brands and learn more about fashion, so we’re here to introduce them to pieces that are unique.”

    Take Rosie Assoulin, the New York designer who’s a personal favorite of Kwon and Jung and who they came across on one of their six annual buying trips. The billowing silk tops and ball gown–style slacks appeal to a new generation of Seoulites, like Kwon and Jung, who want to stand out and are using their personal style to do so. Accessories, too, like Delphine Delafon’s bucket bags, are making sartorial waves here. “In Korea, it’s always Chanel, or Louis Vuitton, or Gucci, but now we have people coming in and saying, ‘Oh, what brand is this? Maybe, instead of Miu Miu, I will buy this,’ ” Jung says. “Rare Market has that kind of pull with people now.”

    Photographed by Alex Finch

    So, how are Kwon and Jung expanding their empire? There’s We11Done, their own in-house line which launched last year with a lookbook starring Leandra Medine. Inspired by the ’70s and ’80s, the pair reinterpreted retro silhouettes in a modern way—calf-grazing emerald velvet skirts, a necktie jacquard mini—that has sparked rabid desire overseas. Luckily, a dedicated e-commerce site is set to launch later this spring, followed by their second We11Done collection in November. “We want to go worldwide,” Jung says, laughing. “We’ll try!” Here’s hoping.

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  • 5 DIY Beauty Hacks That Will Change Your Life

    With Earth Day swiftly approaching on April 20th, we're all revving up our beauty engines with natural remedies and green products to up our beauty game and maybe even venture into going green with our beauty routines. Even our own Digital Beauty and Hair editor, Deena Campbell, swears by green beauty and only uses organic products in her skincare routine (respect!) For those of you wanting to try a more holistic approach to beauty for health reasons or otherwise, here are five DIY beauty treatments to wet your feet in the green beauty-sphere that we know you'll love, courtesy of botanicals expert and founder of Vendome Paris, Alexandra Whitcombe. images:cheap long prom dresses What's the Between Halal, Vegan and Green Cosmetics? For Acne: Dab a few drops of lavender oil on any pesky pimple to reduce redness and inflammation For Anti-Aging: Combine cleaned marigold petals with honey and milk for a soothing DIY facemask. This mixture helps plump up thinning and aging skin. For Puffy Eyes: Moisten two chamomile tea bags in cold water and let them sit in the refrigerator for 5-10 minutes. Once removed, place over your eyes for 20-30 minutes to reduce puffiness. To Restore Hydration: To hydrate dry, irritated or cracked skin, infuse water with rose petals and lemon juice to use as a facial mist or skin toner. For Stretch Marks: While aloe vera is known for treating sunburns, it’s also used to lessen the visibility of stretch marks. Apply aloe vera gel from a fresh plant directly to stretch marks to help heal those minor tears in the skin. ADVERTISING Test your green thumb and tell us your favorite all-natural beauty hacks. Read more:long prom dresses

  • From Meat Dresses to Women's Rights Advocate: The Drastic (and Inspiring) Evolution of Lady Gaga's Career

    Today marks Stefani Germanotta, a.k.a. Lady Gaga's, 30th birthday. For many people, turning the big 3-0 kicks off a period of panic, self-doubt, the occasional quarter-life crisis, and just general lamentation at not achieving anything that you set out to do. For Gaga's part, there's a good chance she's going to be reflecting on 30 with a whole lot of self-congratulations instead.

    Lady Gaga, 30th Birthday, Fashion

    But while the world now knows Gaga as a mature, introspective, almost-EGOT, she's had a whole lot of transformations during her career. After all, it's almost hard to believe that the sensitive woman on last month's Oscars stage is the same person who once wore a long prom dresses made of raw meat. In honoring our beloved Gaga today, we decided to look back all the different personas she's inhabited over the years—awesomely wacky fashions included, of course.

    In keeping with tradition, let's started at the beginning. We call this The Club Years. Or, shall we say, Da Club Years.

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    The Fame hits stores.

    Lady Gaga, The Fame

    Courtesy Interscope

    Gaga's debut studio album was a movement in and of itself. With a few hit songs she became what was basically the American equivalent of Kylie Minogue. If there's a college student out there who didn't spend every Saturday night of 2008 getting in the mood to party to the tune of "Just Dance" or "Poker Face" then they're straight-up lying. She was the disco queen, known for giant sunglasses, slinky onesies, blonde wigs, and owning the club beat genre.

    Gaga also started to hint at the potential of her artistry, with blown-out performances that featured wild costumes and even wilder dance moves. In short, The Fame was an introduction to Classic Gaga.

    The Original Sia.

    Lady Gaga, The Fame Monster

    Courtesy Interscope

    Otherwise known as The Wig Period. Nobody could rock fake hair like Lady Gaga in the late aughts. But it wasn't just about what was on her head—she began to be known for taking risks onstage as well, with stunts like singing from the creepiest bathtub of all time in the "Bad Romance" video to smearing her face in blood at the 2009 VMAs to strutting through a jail in her underwear for "Telephone." We should also mention that she was nominated for a slew of Grammys and won several, but the public was certainly paying a wee bit more attention to her wild stunts and the blood-smearing and such.

    Activism Begins.

    Lady Gaga

    Jason Merritt/Getty Images

    There isn't a person in America who doesn't have this image burned into their brains, but let's just take a second to remember the fact that Lady Gaga once wore a dress made of meat to the 2010 VMAs. She did so as a protest against the military's "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy, and it was arguably the most memorable (if not the very first) step in her transformation to all-out activism. She followed that, er, showcase up with perhaps the most awesomely head-scratching Grammys arrival ever: The Egg.

    Ohh, the egg. Gaga was on hand to open the show with her groundbreaking "Born This Way," an anthem of sorts for anyone who's ever felt they were different. And clearly the best way to honor that song is to literally birth yourself on the red carpet. She called it her "creative embryonic incubation," which is the perfect way to describe sitting in an enclosed egg for 72 hours before letting yourself on the red carpet. Some scoffed at this moment, some were simply perplexed, but most of all we all realized that our creativity would literally never match Gaga's.

    The Jo Calderone Period.

    Jo Calderone: We know him, we love him, we're not entirely sure where he went. Lady Gaga took on this alter ego, Sasha Fierce-style, as part of her ongoing exploration with performance art. He was a man's man, with slicked-back hair and never without a pack of cigs rolled into his sleeve (or so we think). The singer even appeared on the cover of Vogue Hommes Japan, which is way more than we can say for Sasha Fierce. It was around this time that fans realized they could truly never nail down Gaga, and that's what made her so amazing.

    The Quiet Years.

    No one can stay hot forever, especially when their public persona involves as much energy and thought as Lady Gaga's. We can't say for certain what caused this relative Gaga drought without being in the mind of the artist herself, but she had a notable drop-off in appearances, music release and the like over the last few years.

    Better Than Ever.

    Enter the Lady Gaga of today. She's still talented and artistic and all that she was before, but now she's more of an activist and a role model than she ever was. It all started when she revealed in a December 2014 interview with Howard Stern that she was raped as a teenager. While it was an incredibly vulnerable time for the singer, she channeled it all into positivity, eventually penning a powerful essay on sexual assault and joining forces with the governor of New York to pass the "Enough is Enough" bill. This also led her to write "Til It Happens to You," the song responsible for her Oscar nomination and that groundbreaking performance with other victims.

    Her career came back with a vengeance in other ways, too. Three words: American Horror Story. Gaga was cast in the spring of 2015, and her role was such a runaway hit that she won a Golden Globe and is returning for the next season. Something tells us she's well on her way to an EGOT.

    Oh, and in even more positive news, there's the fact that she's getting married. While her career is clearly the most impressive part about Lady Gaga, getting to spend the rest of her life with Taylor Kinney isn't half bad. She's sporting a giant rock and planning what we can only imagine is going to be a knockout wedding that we can't wait to hear about. All told, 30 is shaping up to be just fine.

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