Summer Favorites 2019

This summer has been a weird one for me. I quit my prior job and moved out of Calgary in the spring, spent some time in Japan and then finally moved to Chicago and started a new job during the summer and it’s just been crazy getting used to everything since then. In any case, there are a few things that I have grown rather attached to throughout this new season of life, so if you’re looking for new recommendations on anything and everything – check out the below list!


Shiseido Sunscreen – started using this right before Japan since I spend way more time outdoors when I’m on vacation and I think I finally am able to stick to the whole sunscreen everyday thing. This goes on super thin and smooth and it has SPF 50 as well as being sweat and water-resistant. Perfect for summer, and perfect for me all year round. 

Son & Park Beauty Water – a recommendation from my lovely friend Clara. She let me use this along with my next favorite when I was visiting her back in May and I woke up with my skin glowing. It’s a toner/essence that’s super light, but whisks away impurities without stripping my skin at all like toners usually do for me. 

CosRx Snail Mucin Essence – paired with above, my skin looks amazing. This stuff does feel slimy at first, but a little goes a long way, it goes on thin, and locks in moisture like none other. 

Atelier California Clementine – my favorite perfume at the moment. Smells like someone bottled summer oranges and I can’t get enough. 

Sweat Block – these little wipes do the impossible. You apply them before bed one night a week and they severely reduce sweating. I am a person that sweats, and using them on my armpits has been amazing for summer

Peet’s Coffee French Roast – Those of you close to me know that I worked as a consultant for Peet’s coffee for over a year and turns out I really miss it because I started buying their coffee in stores. Their Dark Roast French Roast is just amazing. One of the few coffees I’ve ever made at home that leaves no bitter taste on the finish at all.

Goat Cheese on everything – Creamy goat cheese of any type has been amazing to use in my summer cooking. Goes well with summer fruit, baked onto stuffed peppers, on my avocado toast, everywhere.


It’s been hard for me to focus on books for the last few months, but I have still been consuming shows at the same rate. Below are some of my recent favorites. 

Fleabag (Amazon Prime) – only 12 episodes total, this is maybe the sharpest, wittiest show I’ve ever watched.

Good Omens (Amazon Prime) – A six episode mini series based on the book of the same name – this show is just well executed fun.

Patriot Act (Netflix) – political comedy shows never get old, and Hasan Minaj is my new favorite commentator on our current plights. 

The Chef Show (Netflix) – a sort of behind the scenes look at the recipes in the movie Chef. Very lowkey, but fun to watch and introduced me to my new favorite pasta recipe. Pasta aglio e olio. 


Tim Ferriss Podcast – This podcast has been around for a while but I am just now getting into it. The thing that separates Tim’s podcast from other interview podcasts I’ve listened to is how specific it gets. If someone says they eat a protein bar each day, he asks them which exact one they eat. He interviews a huge variety of insanely successful people and really gets to the nitty-gritty of how their journey progressed and how they live their lives today. The episodes are long, often more than two hours, but I listen to them while I run and just pick up where I left off each time. 

Candles – I found this article earlier in the summer, and have been slowly working my way through some of the scents it recommends. So far I’ve tried the Brooklyn Santorini Candle, and the Jenni Kayne Basil Candle. The Jenni Kayne one might be my favorite candle I’ve ever owned, it smells incredible. 

Google Drive – Not a new invention but now that I have two laptops instead of one, google drive has become invaluable to me to work on my personal writing and projects when I don’t want to carry both devices with me. 

Yoga w/Adrienne – Working on my flexibility has been an irregular part of my fitness routine but I’ve been trying to amp it up. This YouTube channel has a huge range of videos for all abilities and activity types and Adrienne has a self-effacing style that doesn’t feel too hippy-dippy for someone as cynical as me. 

I literally cannot believe summer is pretty much over. I don’t know about you guys but it FLEW by for me. Fall is my second favorite season though so I’m not too sad about it. If any of you have any products, books, movies, anything that you’ve been loving lately, I’d love to hear about them, I’m always looking for recommendations.

At the Chicago Art Institute Garden Party PC: Kirin Upadhyay


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