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Getaway Chic: Closed Set with Julie Bensman

Resortwear has always been a bit of an anomaly to me. Perhaps it’s because I grew up in the Midwest, where we hunkered down and waited out the winter like troopers instead of fleeing to St. Bart’s. I wondered, how could the entire fashion industry create collections around a season not everyone experienced? Sure, we all understand spring and fall, but parading models around in cute little two-pieces to remind us we are not, in fact, spending the winter in Bermuda is just plain cruel.

Which is all to say, I WAS one of those people…until I booked a trip to West Palm Beach for this upcoming weekend. The flight plans are set; the contents of my suitcase? Not so much. If I’m purchasing anything for this trip, it needs to be a piece with dual functionality, timeless style, and something I can feel good about swiping my credit card (again) on. Say hello to Mott 50, a chic line of sun-protective mix-and-match separates, all with 50 UPF (ultraviolet protection factor) – for reference, my old American Apparel tees offer up a measly UPF of 5.

Co-Founders Anne Botica and Monique Moore are not only power entrepreneurs with amazing skin; they are also two of the sweetest gals with whom you’d ever want to share a bottle of wine. And so we did just that, last Monday evening, and got to talking about my upcoming trip. What better time to give Mott 50 a test run than when my skin can be filed in the “Translucent” category? Along with SPF 3000 lotion, here is my Mott 50-curated look for the perfect Palm Beach holiday:

1) Blanch Maxi Dress:  “The soft bamboo fabric and easy silhouette has made this one of our most popular pieces,” says Moore. “I feel like people say this all the time, but you can literally wear it anywhere … to the beach, lunch, shopping, sailing and sunset cocktails into the evening.” (I was surprised to learn that, for women, melanoma most often develops on the lower legs, so this maxi is perfect.)

2) Emily Jacket: “This lightweight stylish zip-up is the best!” says Botica. “Gold accessories are definitely one of our trademarks.”

3) Billy Hat: “Big floppy hats are the perfect resort accessory and this one is a smart way to ensure your face has the proper sun protection,” Moore says. “As I always say ‘tans fade, but wrinkles don't.’”

Ten years ago, my main mission in tropical locales was to get the deepest tan of all my friends (and wear white on my first day back to school to show it off). These days, I’m looking forward to rest, relaxation, and looking good while I’m doing…well, nothing.