What Zac Posen Can’t Live Without

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If you’re like us, you’ve probably wondered what famous people add to their carts. Not the JAR brooch and Louis XV chair, but the hand sanitizer and the electric toothbrush. We asked designer Zac Posen, whose new cookbook Cooking with Zac is out now, about the tingly face wash, salty candy, and razor-sharp knife he can’t live without.

Joanna Vargas Vitamin C Face Wash
$40, Dermstore

A good face wash is essential when you’re in New York City and I’ve done a good amount of research that says that if you can infuse your skin with Vitamin C, you should. It’s anti-aging! So if you think about being able to do it with a face wash, why not? I’ve tried a lot of different face washes, but with this, I can really feel the Vitamin C activating — it has a bit of a tingle when you leave it on. I feel like it’s working.

Gingher 8-Inch Knife Edge Dressmaker’s Shears
$19, Amazon

They’re actually in my hand right now. When you make and drape clothing, the scissors are your tool. What can I say about them? They’re my babies. And you have to take care of them correctly. You have to have them sharpened and you can’t use them for any other material. What do I love about these? They have a great glide to them, and a nice weight that can go from a more structured fabric to a fluid one with total ease. That may be more than you wanted to know.

Dr Teal’s Pure Epsom Salt Soaking Solution
$5, Amazon

For me, I’ll unwind at the end of the day by soaking in epsom salts. It’s the routine I prefer for coming down after crazy days. I find that the eucalyptus is incredibly soothing, especially when the seasons are changing. It clears your sinuses, and I think the epsom salts are supposed to pull out toxins. I’m a big proponent of the stuff mixed with magnesium flakes.

Gustaf’s Dutch Licorice Coins
$5, Amazon

Ah, salty licorice. When I was little, I had a Norwegian babysitter — and that was my introduction to both regular and salty licorice. We all know the ordinary version, but the salty kind is a favorite candy throughout Northern Europe. It’s a guilty pleasure of mine that I have to try not to keep around because I’ll eat the entire bag in one go. It’s a particular and odd delicacy, but I love it because it just takes me back to childhood. The normal reaction of people I’ve introduced to it is not to finish it. People do not like it. But if you were raised with it, you’ll be obsessed.

The Price of Illusion by Joan Juliet Buck
$12, Amazon

I think Joan has had one of the most fascinating journeys within media, and she put together this incredibly reflective and honest memoir. She’s just a wonderful writer, and she hasn’t had a book out in some time, so it’s been such an exciting thing to read more from her.

Models Matter by Christopher Niquet
$27, Amazon

I think if you’re interested in the history of fashion and style and want to learn more about the behind-the-scenes stuff with models, you have to, have to read this book. It takes you in depth so you hear the personal stories of so many of the iconic faces who changed the look of our time. For anyone who collects fashion or style books, it’s a must-have.

Global Ukon 7” Asian Chef’s Knife
$112, Williams Sonoma

A good sharp knife is safer than a dull knife, of course, and when you’re working in the kitchen it’s imperative to work with good tools. I actually found this knife through trial and error. A lot of antique knives I own came from my dad and flea marketing, but when I went in search of a new knife, I had to find the one that felt most comfortable in my hand, and this was it. Of course, it also cuts like a dream.

La Perla Men’s Club Boxer Briefs
$124, La Perla

This underwear is just a comfortable great cotton that’s become my go-to for wearing under a suit. Way superior to other things out there like a 2(x)ist or Calvin Klein.

Lisa Corti Mango Peach Indigo Muslin Cloth
$245, Lisa Corti

They’re printed in Italy, and they’re so nice I actually used them as a background in some of the cooking shots for my cookbook. I just think they’ve got beautiful color combinations and patterns, from florals to geometrics. Put this on your table and you add instant character.

Brooks Brothers Milano Suit
From $648 Brooks Brothers

I am a man of many suits. For the last few seasons of Project Runway, I’ve been primarily wearing made-to-measure suits. There’s something very old-fashioned and luxurious to have a pair of pants and jacket made to your needs and measurements. I actually adjust them for my own personal use — I have pockets built in for the mic pack when I film and little personalized elements that only I know about. I like that they’re made in Massachusetts from this beautiful Italian fabric. It’s like the best of both worlds.

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What Zac Posen Can’t Live Without