KLARSKIN x MICHAL KURTIS
Luxury Fashion Consultant | Previous Director of Fashion & Merchandising at Barneys
Q: Can you give me a very quick introduction to yourself and your career
Hello there! I'm a Texan raised New Yorker, now living in Berlin's lockdown with my German fiancée. I've worked 10 years in luxury fashion, most recently as Director of Fashion Office at Barneys New York #rip. I now consult brands and retailers on entry to market strategy, and anything to do with buying, planning, and digital marketing.
Q: You recently moved to Germany. How are you finding living in Berlin vs NYC?
I'm a corporate bitch at heart, so the transition into a freelance lifestyle was not without its challenges. I've since learned to adjust to a less structured work flow, and I am loving the advantages of being self employed, but I can't really speak of this shift without first acknowledging that Covid-19 has a far larger impact on my transition than anything else. Figuring this all out in a new country is yet another added layer to a lifestyle adjustment. I miss the restless hustle of NYC, but love Europe's emphasis of life over work. I'll be able to provide a proper review once we're out of our endless lockdown.
Q: Tell me a bit about your morning routine.
I wish I could tell you that I meditate every morning, write my intentions for the week in a journal, and drink water and lemon before anything else, but I haven't been able to maintain any morning habits except brushing my teeth.
I do work out consistently and try to get that in during the AM - this is enough to make me feel like the wellness goddess that I am. I did get through a container of Klarskin Radiance Powder which required a nominal amount of discipline so now I feel like I can do anything.
Q: What is your skincare routine?
I know your skin doesn't need it, but I wash my face in the morning and at night. I make sure my face is moisturized at all times, especially because I'm on the dryer end. I use Klarskin Universal Serum as a first layer of moisture before any other cream. I'm a firm believer in Augustinus Bader Rich Cream (the hype is real).
I also use a topical retinoid every couple days to steer away breakouts and prevent wrinkles. All the celebrities use a retinoid, so I use a retinoid. I also started getting facials every six weeks because I turned 30 recently and I need to implement some damage control.
Q: Can you tell me about your fitness routine?
I've worked out consistently since college, but it wasn't until I drank the SoulCycle koolaid that I started taking it more seriously.
I loved going to Barry's in NYC for the full body workout, and now take their virtual classes from Berlin. I owe my body to Barry's, it is no longer only mine.
I don't believe in subscribing to only one form of exercise, so I love to mix in pilates, cycling, anything that will give me a challenge. When I want to target a certain area like booty or arms, I'll find a YouTube and blast some fun music in my apartment.
On days I don't workout, I try to go for a long walk.
I also started with a personal trainer recently because I want to look hot always but particularly for my upcoming wedding if we can ever have it. He's been great at fixing my form, which helps make every workout more effective.
Q: What do you think of the Wellness Industry today and the current ‘health’ trends that are taking over the internet?
We have completely lost our shit.
Pandora Sykes has an excellent chapter in her new book about this, specifically on the endless wellness trends we're constantly marketed. That's not to say I'm not grateful for all the research and development and enhancements technology has afforded our health industry. We know what we need to adopt to lead a healthy lifestyle - mindful eating, consistent exercise, healthy habits. But our generation seeks shortcuts, and "patches" that will fix our ailments, yet not prevent them from the start.
We'll subscribe to a trendy raw diet cleanse before avoiding the binge drinking weekend that prompted it. We'll use CBD face oil to reduce anxiety before cutting out toxic relationships or limiting the comparison trap of social media.
Q: Can you tell me a little bit about your book club and what it means to you
My book club Read The Room is the gift that keeps on giving, and I feel like I am always on the receiving end.
RTR started as a semi-joking instagram story asking who would like to read along with me, and though I expected maybe six responses, it has somehow expanded into this 500 person family. It is without a doubt the best thing to accidentally happen to me, especially during a time when new connections are nearly impossible to forge.
My members who are from all corners of the world make up an intensely powerful, engaged community that share thought provoking insights, new perspectives, and challenges to the every day discussions that come up with each title. Every single person in the club enhances our reading experience. I don't even know how I got so lucky with my readers because I don't even screen who I accept, it's more about managing capacity to be able to have meaningful conversations. I love my roomies SO MUCH.
Q: Finally where do you go for inspiration?
Can be in the minutiae of the everyday or through my growth during tougher times. Of course I'm inspired by the pretty pictures and all the good stuff I come across both on instagram and on the street, especially in a new country where everything feels new. But nothing quite paints the way I feel and think and has a strong impact on both my energy and output quite like the experiences and challenges of the every day.
THANK YOU MICHAL
FOR MORE INFORMATION PLEASE VISIT MICHAL'S INSTAGRAM PAGE BY CLICKING HERE