Seeing as summer is in full swing, it seems like every weekend—nay, every day—our Instagram feeds are hit with a deluge of FOMO-inducing vacation pics. So, as we sit here at our desks far removed from any exotic island locale, we thought, Why not use these scenic snaps as inspiration for an epic staycation? Behold, our comprehensive guide to how to vacation like a celebrity—without actually going anywhere.
1. Have a cocktail.
Take a cue from Lauren Conrad's perfectly executed Instagram and fix up a summery drink of your own and say cheers to the weekend. See below for the recipe, and let the likes roll in.
Salted Plum and Vodka Tunic Cocktail
1 red plum, pitted and sliced (reserve one slice)
1 ½ oz lime juice
1 oz simple syrup
2 oz vodka
Place plum slices in a cocktail shaker, and muddle or smash with a wooden spoon. Add lime juice, syrup, and vodka, then shake with ½ cup ice. Strain into glass with fresh ice. Top with tonic water and garnish with a plum slice; sprinkle sea salt on top just before serving.
2. Delve into a page-turning beach read.
Join Karlie Kloss's book club and scoop up Diane von Furstenberg's latest tell-all, The Woman I Wanted to Be ($18; amazon.com). You'll find yourself so consumed in the designer's story, from her humble beginnings in Brussels to her life as a jet-setting princess, that you may even forget you're not actually on a beach.
3. Wear a sexy strapless bathing suit.
Pretend you're living it up in Punta Cana like Jamie Chung by slipping on a chic printed suit. This scalloped bikini top ($160; avenue32.com) and bottom ($170; avenue32.com) by Marysia Swim just begs to be seen (even if it's just in your mirror).
4. Show off an on-point pedicure.
Channel your inner Kendall Jenner and match your nail color to your bathing suit. Caption Polish offers a slew of hot-pink shades, like this one, cheekily named "Ditch Him" ($12; captionpolish.com). Each polish incorporates a special LAC Q3 technology that lets you achieve the effect of a gel pedicure with just one coat.
5. Indulge in a #foodporn-worthy brunch.
Quell your FOMO by whipping up a delicious-looking (and tasting) batch of smoked salmon tartinettes that rival Shay Mitchell's smorgasbord (pictured above). This recipe comes courtesy of Jody Williams, the inventive chef behind N.Y.C.'s delightfully Francophile Buvette restaurant. See below to get the lowdown on how to make them:
Smoked Salmon Tartinettes
Total Time: 15 minutes
1 avocado, halved and pitted
1 scallion, minced
2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
Pinch of red pepper flakes
4 slices of multigrain bread, lightly toasted
4 small romaine lettuce leaves
4 thin slices of smoked salmon
Creme fraiche, for serving (optional)
1/4 cup thinly sliced red onion
Scoop avocado into a bowl. Coarsely mash it with the scallion, lemon juice, and red pepper flakes; season with salt. Spread the avocado mixture on the toast and add romaine, salmon, and a dollop of creme fraiche if desired, then top with red onion.
6. Spring for a colorful ice cream cone.
Nothing says "I'm on vacation" like a double scoop of creamy goodness—just ask Bella Thorne. Replicate the Scream actress's colorful cone with a trio of #nomworthy Talenti gelatos. We like Caribbean Coconut, Black Raspberry Chocolate Chip, and Peppermint Bark. No filter needed here.
7. Get matching towels for your squad.
Attempt to recreate Taylor Swift's Fourth of July photo by scooping up One Kings Lane's striped beach towels in red ($29; onekingslane.com) and midnight blue ($29; onekingslane.com). Keep jumping until you get the money shot.
8. Apply a face mask.
Make believe (for just a second) that you're a supermodel on location and apply Miranda Kerr's Kora Organics Clay Purifying Mask ($53; netaporter.com) before some much-needed beauty rest. Duck face optional.