The *Pitch Perfect* Women Really Have Us Thinking a 4th Movie Is Happening

Here’s some aca-amazing news to brighten up your Monday: Pitch Perfect 4 might be underway. On Sunday (September 30), four of the Barden Bellas—Anna Camp, Chrissie Fit, Brittany Snow, and Rebel Wilson—posted the same cryptic photo to their respective Instagrams. In the photo, the four Bellas pose while holding up four fingers. Wilson, Camp, and Fit all captioned the photo with four hearts, while Snow opted for “4 thumbs down.”

Naturally, fans are freaking out in the comments, with many interpreting the post as confirmation—or, at least, a hint—that a fourth movie in the popular Pitch Perfect franchise is on the way. Of course, there’s an another explanation for all this: As their Instagrams show, the Bellas were all present for Camp and Skylar Astin’s joint birthday celebration, so maybe the fours were just to show that, well, four of the former cast members have reunited in person.

Still, we’re not prepared to rule out the possibility of a Pitch Perfect 4. Considering the success of the previous three movies, another installment in the franchise is basically a no-brainer. And although screenwriter Kay Cannon told E! in April that Pitch Perfect 3 was the “end of the Bellas as we know them,” Anna Kendrick said she’d totally be down to reprise her role as Beca Mitchell for a fourth time. “Hell yeah!” she told Entertainment Weekly in August. “We’d do them forever.”

Kendrick isn’t the only Pitch Perfect star who’d want to return. Just last week, Snow told Extra TV that “all of us would be game for it.” “We have the best time filming those movies. We made some of our best friends during that franchise,” she told the publication. “Part of us knows that chapter might be closed and is okay with that, but we are still incredibly close and we will probably make them—if they want us to—until the end of time.”

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& Other Stories VIP Sale 2018: Best Fashion Buys

Some say fall is the best season—renewal and all that—but it also can be an expensive one if you’re someone who requires a change of wardrobe. Luckily, lots of your favorite stores have some pretty epic sales happening right now with a ton of key fall outfit essentials that won’t make your wallet hate you. Today, we’ve got access to & Other Stories VIP sale before it goes public tomorrow, which means you should stock up on all the pieces you love before they sell out.

Need some light coats? They’ve got that. What about an oversized sweater? They’ve got that too. And how about testing the waters inexpensively on that neon clothes trend we saw all over Fall 2018 runways? Of course, & Other Stories is on it. They pretty much have it all which is why we’re narrowed down their sale options to the best under $100 buys perfect for building up your wardrobe for as little money as possible. Shop our selects below.

Lana Del Rey Calls Out Kanye West: ‘Your Support of Donald Trump Is a Loss for the Culture’

Kanye West stunned many over the weekend when he went on an impromptu pro-Donald Trump rant on Saturday Night Live. The speech was captured by audience members at the venue and quickly went viral.

“The blacks want always Democrats… you know it’s like the plan they did, to take the fathers out the home and put them on welfare… does anybody know about that? That’s a Democratic plan,” West said, according to The Daily Beast. “There’s so many times I talk to, like, a white person about this and they say, ‘How could you like Trump? He’s racist.’ Well, uh, if I was concerned about racism I would’ve moved out of America a long time ago.”

Shortly after his speech, West uploaded a photo of himself wearing a Make America Great Again hat to Instagram—something he’s worn before—and gave another statement in support of Trump. “This represents good and America becoming whole again,” West wrote, in reference to his hat. “We will no longer outsource to other countries. We build factories here in America and create jobs. We will provide jobs for all who are free from prisons as we abolish the 13th amendment. Message sent with love.”

The 13th amendment abolished slavery in the United States, so naturally many were troubled by West’s caption. However, he doubled down with a tweet: “The 13th Amendment is slavery in disguise,” he wrote. “Meaning it never ended. We are the solution that heals.”

Many people aren’t happy with West’s posts—including Lana Del Rey, who left a comment underneath his Instagram that challenged the rapper’s views.

“Trump becoming our president was a loss for the country but your support of him is a loss for the culture,” she posted. “I can only assume you relate to his personality on some level. Delusions of Grandeur, extreme issues with narcissism—none of which would be a talking point if we weren’t speaking about the man leading our country.”

She continued, “If you think it’s alright to support someone who believes it’s OK to grab a woman by the pussy just because he’s famous—then you need an intervention as much as he does—something so many narcissists will never get because there just isn’t enough help for the issue. Message sent with the concern that it will never be addressed.”

Check it out Del Rey’s comment for yourself, below:

PHOTO: Instagram

Del Rey has an interesting relationship with West. She actually sang her hit “Young and Beautiful” at West’s wedding to Kim Kardashian in 2014, and prior to this, West had an orchestra play a version of the song when he proposed. West hasn’t responded to Del Rey’s comments directly, but stay tuned.

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Cardi B Reportedly Just Turned Herself In to the Police

Cardi B has reportedly turned herself in to police after allegations emerged she was involved in a strip club brawl.

According to TMZ, the rapper took herself to New York City’s 109th precinct, in Queens, on Monday morning (October 1). The outlet reports Cardi B was arrested and charged with two misdemeanors: assault and reckless endangerment.

Reports claim that Cardi is being sued after her entourage allegedly threw bottles and chairs at two bartenders from Angels strip club — sisters Jade and Baddie Gi — who Cardi allegedly believes may have had a relationship with her husband, rapper Offset, according to Page Six. A source close to Cardi told TMZ that the alleged attack was not premeditated, but rather “spontaneous,” and began when someone threw a drink.

The “I Like It” rapper may receive a summons for a court appearance, according to Page Six. Cardi is heading down to the precinct to claim her name and innocence,” a source told Page Six. “She is in the company of her counsel and detectives, and is being interviewed,” the NYPD public information officer confirmed to Us Weekly.

This is the second time in recent weeks that Cardi B has allegedly been involved in drama. At the Harper’s Bazaar Icons Party during New York Fashion Week, rapper Nicki Minaj allegedly made comments about Cardi’s infant daughter, Kulture, prompting a fight between the two, and the exchange reportedly ended with Cardi allegedly throwing her shoe at Minaj. The rapper was reportedly subsequently escorted out of the party. After the alleged altercation, Minaj spoke to Queen Radio about what had happened, claiming that she had not “made comments” about Cardi’s daughter, as had been alleged. “The other night I was part of something so mortifying and so humiliating to go through in front of a bunch upper echelon… people who have their life together,” Minaj said. “I was in an Alexandre Vauthier gown — off the motherf/*cking runway — and I could not believe how humiliated it all felt.”

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What It Costs to Be Me: Lingerie Designer TyLynn Nguyen

These days it’s nearly impossible to know what women are spending on the way they look. Someone with Instagram-flawless contouring might have honed her craft using the finest from the drugstore aisles, and the utterly makeup-free type might be spending thousands on laser treatments or face serums. Enter our series “What It Costs to Be Me,” where we’re asking interesting women for radical transparency.

Up this week: TyLynn Nguyen, 31, a lingerie designer and mother of three from Calabasas, CA. Her annual total? $9,585.

There are few people to whom the adjective “luminous” can be applied 100 percent un-ironically; TyLynn Nguyen is one of them. (Go peruse her Instagram; it’s simply a fact.) This truth is all the more extraordinary given that Nguyen has three kids (an eight-month-old, a three-year-old, and a six-year-old) and runs her gorgeous, eponymous lingerie line, TyLynn Nguyen. Her pared-down, radically sleek aesthetic seems effortless, but her particular brand of self-care does take rigor, especially when it comes to her skin care routine (regular facials, scrubs, masks, et al.) and exercise (intensive, one-on-one ballet lessons). That said, it isn’t about cloaking reality. “I’m really about looking like yourself,” she says. “I’m for accentuating whatever greatness God’s already given you.”

My Simple Morning Skin-Care Routine: $155

My general philosophy is consistency. I always wash my face twice a day: In the morning I usually use Chanel La Mousse ($45) and then follow with an oil moisturizer. True Botanicals Renew Pure Radiance Oil ($110) is so, so good. I like that the ingredients are very clean. It doesn’t feel heavy, but it’s definitely there—and most importantly it doesn’t feel like you’re getting your skin dirty. I love the smell too—even the color.

My (Triple!) Cleansing P.M. Skin Ritual: $610

I wash my face again at night with an oil cleanser if I’m wearing makeup during the day—Chanel L’Huile Anti-Pollution Cleansing Oil ($45) is incredible at taking off makeup. The oil cleanser is mostly just to lift and release the makeup, and then I’ll cleanse again—either with the Chanel cleanser from the morning or African Botanics’ Buchu Enzyme Polish ($75)—to really wash my face. Then I go to a scrub; I literally scrub every night. I’m not sure if it’s because I’m a black woman or what (my mom is a mix of German, Dutch, Swiss, and Ukranian, and my dad is Sudanese African and Cherokee Indian), but I think with the combination of all those beautiful ethnicities, maybe my skin just turns over more quickly? Omorivicza’s Facial Polisher ($95) is gentle but it does the job really well. Then I use Biologique Recherche Lotion P50W ($67)—it just zings dirt right out of my skin. Last, I layer on Crème de la Mer ($325) to moisturize.

My Two Failsafe Complexion Fixers: $460

If I’m home with the baby and I have a small breakout, I’ll go the whole day with a mask on wherever those problem areas are. Yeah, I’m so extra—pimples, begone! I spot-treat with the African Botanics Mineral Cleansing Mask ($85) anywhere there’s a bump and literally leave it on all day.

I also use the La Prairie Skin Caviar Luxe Sleep Mask ($375) twice a week. It is so good. Because I live in Calabasas and it’s the desert, I need a lot of hydration. I’ve never spent money on Botox, and I feel like my skin looks the way it does because I think about moisture. That, and food—I try to stick with fruits and vegetables. It’s about eating what you like, but making sure it’s good and from the ground.

My At-Home Face Massager: $25

I’ve been loving using this rose quartz flat facial tool called gua sha ($25)—one side has three carved indents, the other side is shaped like a fin of a dolphin. I got it from Julie Civiello Polier, who does shamanic facials in L.A. You can use it to massage your face with whatever moisturizer you usually use—I like to use it with my True Botanicals oil. I just kind of push it around my face in an upward motion. Julie says when you’re finishing the massage to sweep the flat side of the stone from the middle of your face outward, and then down your neck, which helps to drain your lymphs. It boosts circulation in your face, and it feels so good. I use it almost every night now. And so does my husband!

My Crucial Shower Regimen: $297

I shower twice a day. I just really like being clean. That’s probably annoying and I could save water, but I’m basically always juggling something—either running around for work or the kids during the day, then up all night with the baby. Plus, my metabolism’s fast, so I sweat. For my body, I use the Oribe Côte D’Azure Body Wash ($42) and Body Scrub ($65). They smell like the French Riviera. And I’m using this razor by Mave ($75). It looks like a little sculpture.

Then there’s my hair. My mom has blond hair, my dad has really fine curly hair, so mine ended up somewhere in between. It’s pretty curly, but when it’s straight it’s like baby hair—it’s strong, but it’s thin. I don’t know how else to describe it. I only shampoo twice a week and condition four times a week. Right now I’m using Obliphica Seaberry Shampoo ($24) and Conditioner ($26); they’re great to my curls. Every three days I leave a deep moisture mask on my hair for 15 minutes. Leonor Greyl Masque Fleurs De Jasmine ($65) is amazing.

My Low-Key Hair Maintenance: $1,704

I usually wear it slicked back in a low bun—pretty low-maintenance. When I get out of the shower I put Leonor Greyl Secret de Beauté Hair and Body Oil ($66) in my hair right away. Then I use Oribe Star Glow Styling Wax ($42) and Oribe Airstyle Flexible Finish Cream ($42) together with a Mason Pearson bristle brush ($150) to achieve the combdown for my flat little bun. Finally, I spray Oribe hairspray ($38) in the front to toothbrush-comb down the flyaways. It’s an old wooden toothbrush by Goodwell Co. ($6) and it’s wonderful.

Twice a month I get my hair blowdried because I like it straight sometimes: $40 at the new DryBar here in Calabasas. Twice a year I get a haircut at Spoke and Weal (about $200)—I see Lindsay or Chelsea, and they’re both fantastic at cutting and blowdrying. I’ve never colored my hair.

My (Mostly) Subtle Makeup: $288

I have a lot of makeup, but I don’t wear a lot on. Right now the foundation I’m using is Chanel Vitalumiere Aqua in Number 50 ($50), which goes on like a tinted sunscreen. It has a very slight luminescence; not overbearing, because I don’t want to look like a lightbulb, and I think this does it without shouting, “Look at the shimmer on my cheekbones!” They’re really pronounced as it is. When it comes to blush I’m into Kosas Tropic Equinox ($34)—the darker color in the cream duo, not the illuminator. I think cream disappears into your skin more easily than powder; it’s that little touch that still feels natural, where you can still get that flush to your skin without being too extra about it.

I don’t like that whole superdark eyebrows look. So I use Josie Maran The Good Brow in Medium Deep ($24), but I don’t smush it on. I use it very lightly to reinforce areas that are sparse. On my lashes, I use the Utowa eyelash curler ($22) and follow with Chanel Inimitable Mascara ($32). Sometimes I wear Chanel Les Quatres Ombres eyeshadow quad in Candeur et Expérience ($64), which I apply with my fingertips. It’s super-easy and saturates your lids nicely.

On my lips, I like Pat McGrath’s lip pencil in Done Undone ($25), which is pretty close to my actual lip color. It feels great on and looks very natural. When I put on my face oil I include my lips so they’re really moisturized. And I color in my whole mouth with the pencil like it’s a lipstick. I also wear a red lip often, depending on my mood. I love Chanel Rouge Allure Ink Matte Liquid Lip Color in Choquant ($37), which means “Shocking” in French—that particular red looks so good on my skin.

My Must-Have Body Products: $346

I love my deodorant: Aesop Herbal Deodorant Roll-On ($35). I like the way it smells, that it’s good for you, and that it feels great going on your skin. And you don’t smell like a flower garden. No offense to anyone who does, but it’s not my thing.

For body moisturizer, I use one of two things depending on the day. If my skin’s super-dry I use La Mer The Body Crème ($275)—or I use Topicrem ($36), a French moisturizing body milk I discovered in Paris. I went to a pharmacy there because I needed some lotion, I picked it up randomly, and I was like, this is amazing! I’ve been using it ever since. It smells like a baby bath—like a clean, fresh baby in the bathtub.

My Favorite Facials and Body Treatments: $4,800

I get facials once a month from Camille Fields. She uses only Biologique Recherche products, and I spend anywhere from $200 to $500 on my treatments. But she’s just so good with skin—the way she extracts, the way she builds her treatments. I think that’s such a huge thing, finding someone who understands your skin.

I like to do a sauna or a massage occasionally—I think it’s good to be massaged, to just move blood around your body, make sure your muscles aren’t tense. With three kids I’m always carrying somebody, so I want to make sure things aren’t out of line. I’ve been trying to find somewhere out here in Calabasas and the only spa I’ve liked so far is Burke Williams. It doesn’t exactly give me the vibe I want but it does the job. I go for an hour to 90 minutes, which is about $100 to $200. It’s so important to go a couple times year. I also try to see a chiropractor maybe once a year to get my body aligned correctly. Those appointments are about $300—but can be less depending on your health insurance.

My Splurgy-But-Necessary Return To Exercise: $900 so far

For a long time now I haven’t been doing anything exercise-wise—I’ve been adjusting to having three children. I mean, all praise to God because I was given good genes. But I love working out, and I used to take ballet before my kids and when I was pregnant. I love how it stretches your mind and body. Now I’m taking ballet again two or three times a week with a private trainer named Romi. She’s the owner of Ballet Bodies—it’s $900 for 10 classes a month. I think I’ll probably stick to that frequency. The discipline, poise, and sculpting is important to me, and I enjoy the rigor and precision that having a one-on-one trainer provides. It teaches you mind control too. There are a lot of life lessons you can learn from being in a position you don’t enjoy. Ballet does that for you.

Priyanka Chopra and Nick Jonas’s Wedding Is Reportedly Happening ‘Soon’

Important news, people: Nick Jonas and Priyanka Chopra‘s wedding is reportedly “coming soon,” according to recent reports.

“The wedding is coming soon and they really want to blend wedding traditions from both of their cultures that are important to them,” a source told Us Weekly. “Priyanka is having a really good time planning the wedding because it’s a mix of Indian and American styles and customs, which she knows so much about.”

The Quantico star reportedly “wants an Indian wedding” and Jonas been “super supportive of her and he’s thrilled.”

Last month, Chopra’s mom, Madhu Chopra, revealed that she was hoping her daughter and her fiancé would opt for a traditional ceremony, and it looks like her wishes may be coming true. “I haven’t forced any of my thoughts on her, but I definitely want a traditional Indian wedding,” she said. “That’s my only wish. I started the roka with a puja, which is important for me. I’m a modern mother, but at heart, I’m quite conservative.”

In addition to being on the same page about all things wedding-related, the couple is reportedly a “great match.” “When [Priyanka] met Nick, she was so taken by him,” sources told Us. “She says she loves the way he looks at her, the way he smiles and that he listens so well.”

While it’s unclear exactly when the couple’s romantic relationship began, they were first linked after the Met Gala in May 2017 and went public with their romance earlier this year. Jonas proposed to Chopra in July, and if their engagement is any indication — he reportedly shut down the Tiffany & Co. store on Fifth Avenue, Sweet Home Alabama–style — their wedding will certainly be one for the books.

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Priyanka Chopra and Nick Jonas’ Wedding Is Reportedly Happening ‘Soon’

Important news, people: Nick Jonas and Priyanka Chopra‘s wedding is reportedly “coming soon,” according to recent reports.

“The wedding is coming soon and they really want to blend wedding traditions from both of their cultures that are important to them,” a source told Us Weekly. “Priyanka is having a really good time planning the wedding because it’s a mix of Indian and American styles and customs, which she knows so much about.”

The Quantico star reportedly “wants an Indian wedding” and Jonas been “super supportive of her and he’s thrilled.”

Last month, Chopra’s mom, Madhu Chopra, revealed that she was hoping her daughter and her fiancé would opt for a traditional ceremony, and it looks like her wishes may be coming true. “I haven’t forced any of my thoughts on her, but I definitely want a traditional Indian wedding,” she said. “That’s my only wish. I started the roka with a puja, which is important for me. I’m a modern mother, but at heart, I’m quite conservative.”

In addition to being on the same page about all things wedding-related, the couple is reportedly a “great match.” “When [Priyanka] met Nick, she was so taken by him,” sources told Us. “She says she loves the way he looks at her, the way he smiles and that he listens so well.”

While it’s unclear exactly when the couple’s romantic relationship began, they were first linked after the Met Gala in May 2017 and went public with their romance earlier this year. Jonas proposed to Chopra in July, and if their engagement is any indication — he reportedly shut down the Tiffany & Co. store on Fifth Avenue, Sweet Home Alabama–style — their wedding will certainly be one for the books.

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Meghan Markle’s Wedding Veil Had a Hidden Connection to the Queen—and More From Queen of the World

It’s been a few months since Meghan Markle and Prince Harry’s royal wedding, but the fever around the royal family is only getting stronger with time. Take, for instance, how Markle’s every move—She closes car doors! She takes the train!—is analyzed or how eagerly the public awaits Kate Middleton’s return from maternity leave.

And tonight, October 1, HBO will give us even more of the royal content we crave by airing the documentary Queen of the World. It takes a look at Queen Elizabeth II’s role on the global stage and how she’s passing the torch on to the younger royals. Speaking of those younger royals, the documentary gives us a rare inner look at Meghan and Harry’s married life. In one scene, the Duchess of Sussex opens up about her wedding dress and veil. As she’s viewing both for the first time since the royal wedding, she reveals that she added a piece of blue fabric from her first date with Prince Harry into the look. That wasn’t the only tribute, either: She also had flowers from all 53 U.K. Commonwealth countries represented in the veil.

Prince Harry Marries Ms. Meghan Markle - Windsor Castle

PHOTO: WPA Pool

Meghan Markle’s wedding veil had all 53 U.K. Commonwealth countries represented.

However, the documentary’s executive producer Nick Kent told Glamour there’s another hidden connection to the Queen herself in Meghan’s veil. “I’ll tell you what was really impressive about the story to embroider those flowers,” Kent explains. “Apart from being something she gave a lot of thought and care to, it shows an appreciation of something not everybody necessarily understands, which is that symbols are really important to monarchy.”

He continues, “They’ve been important for a thousand years or more. That particular symbol of having flowers embroidered into a dress—I don’t know if she was aware of this—but 65 years earlier the Queen did the same thing on her coronation. She had the eight flowers of the then eight Commonwealth countries embroidered into her gown. It says something really personal and individual; but also as a symbolic gesture, it was part of a great tradition of how symbols have a powerful significance in terms of bonding monarchy to people.”

Many of us might not realize is how deeply important the Commonwealth countries are to the Queen. “The Commonwealth is the thing that she counts as her greatest personal achievement,” he says. “When she became queen 65 years ago, her father died very suddenly, very unexpectedly. She never imagined she’d be queen at such a young age. At that time, there were eight countries in the Commonwealth. Now there are 53. So she has really dedicated the last 65 years of her life to sustaining and nurturing this institution.”

Coronation 1953

PHOTO: Monty Fresco

Queen Elizabeth II’s coronation gown had the eight U.K. Commonwealth countries represented.

As Kent was on hand for the filming (and has worked with the royal family in the past, most recently with Prince Harry and Prince William on the touching documentary Diana, Our Mother: Her Life and Legacy) we asked him for some more behind-the-scenes secrets. Read on.

On the Queen’s sense of humor…

“What really surprised me is that she’s got a fantastic sense of humor. You see that in the clip where she’s recording her Christmas message and there’s bird noise and she has to redo it. She really takes it in good heart. I saw it on many occasions when she’s just meeting people. She meets hundreds of people every year, and they’re strangers. Most of these people are pretty intimidated at the prospect of meeting the Queen, but she puts them at ease through her sense of humor.

It’s obviously something she’s passed on to Harry, because there’s a really nice clip you’ve probably seen where Harry is meeting these young people who are working in Buckingham Palace; in the first few seconds of meeting them, he uses his sense of humor immediately to put them at ease. I think that’s something he’s picked up from his grandmother. Of course, the two of them worked together when they were promoting the Invictus Games, and they made that video of him and the Queen with President Obama and Michelle Obama. That’s a real sign of the Queen’s sense of humor and her media savvy as well.”

Speaking of Harry…

“I think there’s a maturity that is growing in him and also a sense of responsibility. One of the things we show in the film is how the Queen is passing on her duties and her responsibilities to the younger generation. It’s going to be really interesting to see Harry and Meghan later this year when they set off on their first Commonwealth tour to Australia and New Zealand and the Pacific. It’s exactly 65 years after the Queen set off on her great Commonwealth tour, just after her coronation.

The thing about being a member of the Royal Family, and it’s true of Harry and it’s true of Meghan, is that it’s hard work. You have to find a purpose to your life. The way the members of the Royal Family do that is they try to find a cause to champion, so Harry has in the past been very active in championing awareness of HIV Aids. He and William and Kate were very active in championing mental health recognition. I think Meghan’s talked about how women’s rights are going to be one of the causes she’s going to be really invested in.”

On the royal family bringing people together…

“The thing about members of the royal family, in particular this generation, is that they’re above politics; they are about values, about promoting particular values. I think at a time when the world is very divided—you know, my country is very polarized, [the United States are] very polarized—politicians are not doing a great job when it comes to bringing people together. And actually, the royal family is pretty good at bringing people together. Whatever their political opinions are, people come to respect the royal family and see them as role models. That’s a big responsibility. In terms of Harry, you’re seeing him really take on that responsibility.”

Meghan seems to be adjusting just fine…

“It’s really impressive when we filmed with her. It won’t surprise you, given her background as an actor, that she’s a consummate professional. But what was surprising was how natural and at ease she was. Because the thing is, she hadn’t seen her wedding dress since the day of her wedding. Think about that: Even on the day of her wedding, she probably didn’t look that carefully at her dress because most people on their wedding day are so anxious about everything going smoothly and the sun shining and things not going wrong. The whole thing kind of passes in a blur. So this is probably the first time she’s had a chance to really look at that dress with some care and attention.

What was really touching was one of the first things she said, and one of the first things she did, was examine the dress to try and find that little piece of blue fabric which she’d had sewn into the dress from the dress that she’d worn on her first date with Harry—that was a very spontaneous, natural moment.

My sense is she’s someone with a strong sense of public service and duty and trying to do things that make the world a little bit better. Clearly that’s something that fits very well with the mission statement of the royal family, because that’s what each member of the royal family is about.”

Queen of the World airs on HBO on Monday, October 1, at 8 PM ET

This Upton Belt Is the Only One You’ll Ever Need

I like to think of my closet as a carefully-curated collection of my absolute favorite, essentials pieces—the ones that, as a fashion editor, I can truly vouch for: a go-to t-shirt, jean, coat, sneaker, even underwear. Because I spend my days previewing, testing, and styling so many products, I also love being a resource to family and friends outside of the industry when they have a shopping question or complaint, helping them find the best of whatever they’re looking for, in whatever specific color they like, to fit them in just the right way, and so on. There’s one item, though, that I must admit still eludes me, the one thing I had absolutely no idea how to shop for—and that’s a belt.

Unless a piece of clothing came with a belt that matched (like a sundress with one literally built into it), I avoided belts at all cost. If I wore jeans that were too baggy, I would unabashedly be hiking them up by the empty belt loops throughout the day. The belts I did own were embarrassingly dated, from my high school and college days—I’m talking ones with embroidery, braided leather, and grommets, people…. not exactly my style now. Statement belts and logo buckles have their own appeal, but I found shopping for an everyday belt—something simple, basic—surprisingly tricky: It’s hard to come by one that’s functional but stylish, good quality but not wildly expensive.

Really, there are two extremes in the belt market: cheaply-made low-quality ones that will peel apart or start fraying after a few wears, or very expensive designer ones that, somehow, will still peel apart or start fraying. Some are also too short, so you have to add extra belt holes, or too long, so you have to style them more creatively. I could never find a belt that hit all the notes I needed it to. But then I came across Upton Belts, and my whole outlook changed.

PHOTO: Courtesy of Upton Belts

Starting at at $120, Upton’s belts are made in the USA, made-to-order, monogrammable, and comparable to high-end designer ones on the market that sport a much higher price tag. There are three styles that vary slightly in design: the Knox (which has a wider strap and bigger buckle for a casual look), The Fifty (which has a thinner flat strap and a smaller buckle for smart-casual styling), and the Duke (which has the same dimensions as the Fifty, but with a rounded, domed surface for dressier occasions.) They’re available in full grain smooth and pebbled leather, as well exotic options; the buckles come in a range of finishes, from brass to matte nickel.

To ensure the perfect fit, Upton gives you step-by-step instructions to measure yourself for a belt size, which you then select, along with your pant size. If you really don’t want to get up, you can request for Upton to send you a fit kit, which has more directions and a measuring tape. The belt comes with three holes, with the middle one corresponding to your determined size and the other two allowing for tighter or looser wear; each order comes with a hole punch tool, as well as instructions on how to add extra holes, should you need.

PHOTO: Courtesy of Upton Belts

My favorite Upton style is The Fifty, which I own in smooth black leather with a black buckle. It’s everything that I wanted in a belt: minimal, sleek, yet still unique-looking. Most importantly, it fits perfectly and holds beautifully to wear.

Here’s the twist: I share my Upton belt with my husband. Sure, we wear them on different holes—and he wears a suit everyday, while I’m usually in trendier clothing—but someway, somehow, The Fifty works for the both of our lifestyles and wardrobes: jeans, skirts, dresses, suiting… This is great, in theory, but it’s also created a problem when we’re both wanting to wear it—we need to call “dibs on the Upton belt” or forfeit ownership for the occasion. (Growing up without sisters, I never thought I would have to share my closet with anyone, but here I am, fighting over a belt to go with my Off-White look with my husband, who wants it for his suit.)

PHOTO: Courtesy of Upton Belts

Sure, we could easily purchase another one to have in our rotation. But there’s something extremely satisfying about being able to share this perfectly-crafted accessory, therefore doubling its cost per wear. Trendy logo belts and Insta-famous buckles can fade after a couple of seasons, but if you need something that can hold your pants up and live in your closet for years, then you need this.

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