grrrl talk: alexis krauss + samantha urbani

photo by sunny shokrae

these rad ladies make a case for switching over to all-natural beauty products.

While there may be nothing granola-looking about them, Alexis Krauss of Sleigh Bells and Samantha Urbani, who sings with Blood Orange, make a case for switching over to all-natural beauty products.

Samantha Urbani: You know what’s really crazy? When we first met, we bonded over using and loving all-natural beauty products. We were just like, “Duh!” 

Alexis Krauss: It’s really interesting! I always grew up as a relatively conscious consumer— but more with food and the environment—until I learned that exfoliants contain micro beads of small pieces of plastic, which accumulate across oceans and great lakes and damage ecosystems. I think there’s still ignorance about how ubiquitous certain ingredients are in beauty products because consumers are told that it’s not toxic if it’s in a low dose—but we’re getting low doses of these ingredients in so many different products that it adds up. 

SU: Totally!

AK: I got so passionate about it and wanted to write something on the topic, but found myself frustrated with a lot of mainstream beauty sites and the fact that they didn’t dive deep into issues like how certain ingredients affected women’s bodies and the environment. But then I met this woman named Jessica Assaf, a cosmetic activist, and it was like meeting my bandmate. We were just like, “Fuck, let’s start a website that women can go to and share their own stories”— so we launched a blog called Beauty Lies Truth. It’s exciting to see how many eyes we've opened.

SU: That’s so exciting! Starting something like that and seeing it grow as a movement. 

AK: Yeah! I mean it’s really all about taking raw, wonderful ingredients that come from nature and turning them into formulas that work for your skin and body. It's also about consumer activism; we have a lot of buying power, especially as women. There are things that we haven’t seen until the past 50 years when chemicals really started to inundate our lives in a crazy way.

SU: That’s so scary!

AK: I know! How did you get into using all-natural beauty alternatives?

SU: My mom has always been into organic things like homeopathic medicine, food, and things like that. When I was growing up I had a love- hate relationship with the idea of femininity and the idea of what it means to be a girl. For years, when I was a teenager, I totally swore off makeup and didn’t want to wear any ofitatall.ThenIgottoa point where I didn’t want to be so obstinate against femininity, I wanted to take it in my own hands and embrace it. I started thinking about all these things that you’re talking about because I was raised to think about what I’m putting in my body and what’s going on my skin. Especially when I started to tour, things like essential oils and certain oils for moisturizing were very important to me.

AK: Yeah, sure. Nobody teaches you to look at ingredients on products like you look at labels on food because people can’t pronounce them and they don’t know what they are. It’s overwhelming.

SU: Exactly! People assume that they must be OK because they’re telling you to put it
on your skin and the models look beautiful.

AK: What are some of your favorite ingredients? 

SU: I love tamanu oil. It’s super reparative to your skin—it works for scarring, for zits, for anything really. You can rub it onto your face or you can dab it— everyone’s skin is different so it’s a process of figuring it out. This is what I take on tour. I also love macadamia oil for skin and hair. But I don’t know a lot about all-natural makeup brands. Help me! 

AK: OK! So in terms of makeup brands, there are a lot of them. Ilia is a really great brand—they have a lot of highly saturated colors. This is my favorite lipstick by them, it’s called “Crimson and Clover.” Another similar cosmetic company is Jane Iredale— I love their eye stuff, they have great mineral-based shadows. If you look on the blog, we just did a huge thing on lipstick companies like Bite Beauty and RMS. There are tons of them. People should be able to wear a great lipstick and eye shadow in a way that’s healthy for them. 

SU: Ah, I love these colors!

AK: Also, Juice Beauty is a newer brand, which uses a lot of juice formulations packed with a ton of different fruits and vegetables. Their green apple brightening pads are really wonderful. It’s high-quality stuff; there isn’t anything superfluous or toxic in there. You know, less is more.

SU: Absolutely.

AK: S.W. Basics is also a great line, and they’re Brooklyn-based. They have a really wonderful toner that is mostly apple cider vinegar, which is awesome for treating acne. They have a great makeup remover made of jojoba and olive oil. People don’t realize you can just use essential oils for makeup remover. And you can leave it on your skin!

SU: Yeah, you don’t have to remove the makeup remover! [Laughs]

AK: It’s so interesting how people are so freaked out by oil. I guess I was, too, because you always learn, “Scrub the oil away.” 

SU: As long as it’s good oil, it’s really beneficial.

AK: And nourishing for your skin! What you put on your skin is just as important as what you put in your body.

SU: Totally. Your body is so absorbent. It drinks things. It’s crazy.

AK: I mean, there are also extremes of natural beauty—I’m more in the moderate spectrum. I think if I’m consuming responsibly then there are certain products
I can make exceptions for. Like, I still dye my hair—I’m not 100 percent natural and that’s OK. And I still eat ice cream. [Laughs]

SU: What about your nails?

AK: My nail artist Rhea Lopez uses this new polish company called Smith & Cult—they have the coolest bottles. It’s all 5-free, so there’s no formaldehyde or phthalates, which is great. We do a nail-art tutorial on the blog because there are tons of 5-free and 3-free polishes. But don’t get me wrong, nail polish is a chemical cocktail, there are just safer ways to make it.

SU: There was a point a few years ago where I looked at the nail polish on my hands and I was like, “This is insane, I eat food with this on!” So I stopped wearing it for an entire year. I used henna on my nails for a while which was cool because it looked weird and different and would sometimes go all the way up to my knuckle and it was on the tips of my fingers. Experiment if you don’t feel comfortable with something! 

photo by sunny shokrae

We also see Margot Robbie take on Sharon Tate

The new trailer for Quentin Tarantino's upcoming movie Once Upon a Time in Hollywood gives a look at the Manson Family. In the previous clip, we saw Brad Pitt and Leonardo DiCaprio at their funniest. Now, we get to see Margot Robbie take on actress Sharon Tate, Lena Dunham become a cult member, and how the fictional and real-life story lines will intersect in the film.

Per a press release, the film—that follows a fictional story set around the time of the real-life Manson murders—"visits 1969 Los Angeles, where everything is changing, as TV star Rick Dalton (DiCaprio) and his longtime stunt double Cliff Booth (Pitt) make their way around an industry they hardly recognize anymore."

In this clip, after being introduced to Dalton and Booth, viewers get to see how the latter ends up mingling with the Manson Family. As Booth picks up a girl (Margaret Qualley) on the side of the road, he unknowingly welcomes a Manson family member into his life and begins to visit their ranch. The fiction and real-life stories intersect when we find out that Dalton lives next store to Tate, who was murdered by the members of Charles Manson's cult in 1969.

Watch the new trailer for Once Upon A Time In Hollywood ahead of its July 26 theatrical release, below.


Photos by Charles McQuillan/Getty Images

This photo proves that they are the chillest onscreen family

Sophie Turner just posted a photo of herself, Maisie Williams, and Isaac Hempstead Wright—aka the Stark siblings—to her Instagram, showing just what the three used to get up to when the Game of Thrones cameras weren't rolling.

The photo shows Wright looking quite pleased with himself while sitting on a makeshift throne, wearing no pants. As he should be, seeing as (spoiler) his character, Bran, won the Iron Throne this weekend. Williams, meanwhile, is looking way too cool to be involved in the shenanigans, wearing a pair of black sunglasses and staring absently off-camera. As for Turner, she's looking away from her onscreen brother, too, nervously smoking a Juul.

"The pack survived," Turner captioned the photo.

This photo just goes to prove that the Stark siblings are the chillest onscreen family. (It also proves, yet again, that Turner's social media is an absolute delight.)

We're actually a little sad that this footage didn't make it into the final season, considering how many modern-day objects have been spotted in the show's last few episodes.

Photo via @mileycyrus on Twitter

Meet Ashley

Miley Cyrus shared the trailer for her forthcoming Black Mirror episode, and it's basically Hannah Montana set in a dystopian future. Cyrus is a pink wig-wearing pop star named Ashley who is rolling out an in-home virtual assistant, named Ashley Too, that looks like her and shares her voice. But, as is the case with every Black Mirror episode, this technology is not as cute and fun as it's advertised to be.

In the trailer, we get the idea that Ashley is all about wanting fans to "believe" in themselves—but underneath that pink wig, maybe she doesn't feel that same self-love. After Ashley Too introduces herself to fan and new owner Rachel, promising to be her friend, we get a look at Ashley's darker side. She's depressed and tired of the pop star life. A record label executive says to several people in the room, "She doesn't understand how fragile all this is." As they consider upping her dose of medication, Ashley's life is on a downward slope. "It's getting so hard to keep doing this," she voices over glimpses of a police car chase, performances, and breakdowns backstage.

But back to the technology: Does Ashley's breakdown also mean the breakdown of Ashley Too? Looks like it. We see Rachel's virtual assistant screaming, "Get that cable out of my ass! Holy shit! Pull it out," breathing a sigh of relief as soon as they pull it out. A title card then reveals the episode name, "Rachel, Jack, and Ashley Too."

Watch the full trailer and get a full view of Cyrus' cyborg-esque pop star look, below. Black Mirror returns to Netflix on June 5.

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Photo by Paras Griffin / Stringer / Getty Images.

Several actresses allegedly had "issues" with him

Lena Waithe's Showtime series, The Chi, just lost one of its main characters. Jason Mitchell, who was also set to appear in the Netflix film Desperados, has been dropped from both projects following multiple allegations of misconduct. He has also been dropped by his agent and manager.

Hollywood Reporter heard from a source "with knowledge" of The Chi, who says that Tiffany Boone, the actress who plays Mitchell's girlfriend on the show, is just one of several actresses who had "issues" with him. She eventually told producers at Fox21 that she could no longer work with him after filing several sexual harassment complaints. Apparently, her fiancé, Dear White People co-star Marque Richardson, would join her on set when she would shoot with Mitchell.

While news of Mitchell's alleged misconduct is just now beginning to surface, it looks like the ball started rolling on the fallout weeks ago. He was dropped from Desperados and replaced by Lamorne Morris before filming began. A source from the production team said that the producers received "specific information" that they reviewed and acted on quickly. Similarly, a source familiar with Mitchell's former agent, UTA, said the decision to drop him a few weeks ago was very quick following the allegations.

Photo by Rachel Murray/Getty Images

Prior to the college admissions scandal, she said she doesn't "care about school"

Apparently, Olivia Jade wants to go back to school despite all those YouTube videos that suggested otherwise. Back in March, it was revealed that her mom, Fuller House actress Lori Loughlin, and dad, Mossimo Giannulli, had scammed Jade's way into the University of Southern California. Now, Loughlin faces jail time, and Jade lost out on plenty of lucrative ad partnerships.

According to Us Weekly, "Olivia Jade wants to go back to USC," per a source. "She didn't get officially kicked out and she is begging the school to let her back in." Another source though ousted Jade's real motivation to the publication. "She knows they won't let her in, so she's hoping this info gets out," they shared. "She wants to come out looking like she's changed, learned life lessons and is growing as a person, so she for sure wants people to think she is interested in her education."

Jade previously shared in a YouTube video she's in college for the "experience of like game days, partying" rather than the education. She also said, "I don't know how much of school I'm going to attend... I don't really care about school, as you guys all know." Though these statements were made prior to the scandal coming to light, her brand partnerships didn't come into question until her parents were indicted.

Right now, despite previous reports that Jade and her sister would both be dropping out of USC, Jade's enrollment has been placed on hold—meaning she cannot register for classes, or even withdraw from the school—until her parents' court case comes to a close. Then, the school will make its own decision as to how Jade will be affected. I think, either way, she should have to pay off a few of her classmates' loans for all the BS she pulled.