12 Reasons Why Fall Is The Best Season Of The Year
I’ve been grieving the disappearance of summer for a few weeks now, especially in the late afternoons when one minute I look out the window and the sun is still there, and the next it’s inky blackness, which envelopes the end of the day earlier and earlier as we trudge towards December.
But who needs daylight when fall has pumpkin, retinol and lasers. Here are few of my favorite things:
1) The vivid leaves, moody skies and the smell of crisp air, faintly laced with the smell of burning wood. There’s something special about the way the sun sets in October. The clouds are more sharply defined against the sky and the sun that’s recessed behind them peeks out with richer, more vivid splotches of warm orange. It’s the most beautiful light of the year, as thought it’s Mother Nature’s last hurrah before the harsher drudgery of winter sets in. To wit, I stumbled upon this scene just yesterday and snapped it with my iPhone (above).
2) Revving up the Retinol, chemical peels and lasers. I learned the hard way to avoid all three between May and October, especially Retinol and lasers. While these treatments can work wonders, in the short-term they make your skin more vulnerable to sun and hyper-pigmentation. And it’s not just sun exposure it’s the heat.
Two years ago I had a Fraxel Dual treatment a month before a sunny vacation, and despite my diligence with 50 SPF, sunglasses and a hat, my sun spots multiplied like baby bunnies. Late fall is the best time to reintroduce all three into your skin care routine.
3) Covering up and retiring the self tanner. One item I can cross off my to do list is thinking about whether my pasty extremities need a slather of self-tanner before running out of the house in a skirt. Cellulite and pastiness is one worry I’m shelving until April 2013, which brings me to….
4) Tights! Bare legs are a pain in the ass (see above), but tights are a miracle, especially velvety, matte black ones. My go to are Wolford Velvet Delux 50 tights because they make me feel like cat woman and never have that tacky sheen you get from too much Lycra. They’re pricey at $45, but they don’t run and will last the entire season.
5) Boots. You know what’s great about boots? You don’t have to compromise between function, style and I always feel ready for action. I can march from the East River to the Hudson with nary a complaint from my bunions, especially with the right orthopedic insert (wow, that made me sound old).
There’s a trick to bringing them out at just the right time. When brought out to early, they raise eyebrows and make your feet sweat like a sauna. You never want to be that person that makes people wonder, “is it boot season already?”.
Either way there’s no shortage of options for whatever type of boot wearer you are. I’m a fan of the classic equestrian. I envy those who can wear the thigh highs, but on me I look like Puss in Boots.
6) Scarves. A prelude to wearing coats, wrapping a colorful bunch of cotton or lightweight wool around your neck is an instant wardrobe upgrade and often enough to keep you warm until November. It also makes boring outfits interesting in a snap.
Each year I splurge on one Burberry (I like the silk/cashmere ones because they keep you warm, are more versatile and wear better), but I also like the new Missoni and Tory Burch collections. But you don’t have to spend a fortune; Nordstrom has a terrific scarf selection at all price points.
7) Apples. Technically they’re in season all year, but there’s nothing better than a fresh off the tree apple. And, that old saying about an apple a day is true; it’s a proven beauty and anti-cancer food. I like dipping apples slices in fresh ground almond butter.
8) Pumpkin everything. If left to my own devices, I could eat an entire pumpkin pie by myself with a good cup of coffee. But because I’m vain, I compromise with a tablespoon of Trader Joe’s pumpkin butter swirled into a tablespoon into Greek yogurt which makes it taste like pumpkin pudding. Need an elegant desert? Take a small scoop of Trader Joe’s pumpkin ice cream, splash a bit of bourbon on top and stick a cinnamon stick in it.
9) Cafe mochas. After the temperature dips it feels like my weekend is incomplete unless I start it off with a café mocha which is basically hot chocolate for grown ups. I post rationalize my mochas by having them made with skim milk. My favorite is from Saint Ambroeus because they make it with real melted Italian chocolate. To me, the perfect mocha isn’t too sweet, and is made with high quality chocolate, not a squirt of syrup. Other favorites include Bouley Bakery, Jacques Torres Wicked, Joe and City Bakery.
10) Pinot noir. Sure, this is great any time of year, but when the air gets just a little chillier, my body craves red. This year, I’m drinking the Pinot Project on a regular basis and for a splurge, this one:
11) Movie Season. While the first nine months of the year are usually a cinematic graveyard of formulaic action films (hey Michael Bey) and predictable rom coms, I’ve rather enjoyed 2013′s early offerings like “Blue Jasmine” and “Before Midnight”. “Rush” wasn’t bad either although you can equally enjoy it on Netflix or a long airplane flight.
But we all know the studios save their best for last to keep their Oscar contenders top of mind. This year I can’t wait for “12 Years A Slave”, “Gravity”, “American Hustle”, “The Secret Life of Walter Mitty”, “Captain Philips”, and “Her”.
12) Halloween, an excuse to dress up as anything you want. If I were just slightly less busy, I would dive head first into cos-play. Maybe this will be something I do when I’m an empty nester and don’t have a pre-teen son to embarrass.