I find few things more thrilling than the adrenaline rush of chancing upon a new brand on Instagram. I wish I could drink the sensation for breakfast every morning because it invigorates me like a protein shake spiked with caffeine and allows me to fancy myself a digital Magellan, exploring the uncharted waters of Instagram’s Discover Feed, compass (i.e. iPhone) in hand.
I was doing so just the other day when the profile of a girl with a pearl earring and pink hair clamp caught my eye. I recently wrote a story about my hair clamp obsession, so I clicked in, but once I did, it was the earring that really grabbed my attention. It was a baroque pearl hanging from a small gold hoop, reminiscent of the Céline pearls seen ’round the world this season but slightly simpler. Upon further investigation, I learned it was designed by a Denmark-based brand called Anni Lu. I followed the Instagram account, bookmarked the photo and haven’t stopped thinking of baroque pearls since.
More and more fledgling brands are using social media as a portal into the popular consciousness, circumventing the “middleman” aspect of a department store or big online retailer and reaching their customers directly. It engenders an unprecedented sense of intimacy as we (the customers, that is) get to follow their success, and cheer on designers along the way. It also taps into the basic human craving for your taste or style to tell a story that goes beyond buying something simply because everyone else has it.
Instagram discoveries are more personal, tailored to you by an algorithm that knows exactly what you like — literally. They feel a whole lot more special as a result, which I think is part of what makes me, and other people I’ve talked to, so passionate about the discoveries that come to light. I’m always greedy for more, so I asked eight cool people from the Man Repeller network (team members and freelance contributors) to tell me about a brand they’ve discovered recently on the seas of social media. Find their answers below, and share yours in the comments.
Who discovered it: Leandra Medine, Founder
Why it’s cool: I love that it’s a give-zero-fucks brand that decided to make fragrance AND jewelry. I also love that the jewelry looks like fine jewelry, but isn’t priced like fine jewelry.
What product she’s currently eyeing: The sweetheart earrings are what caught my eye on Instagram, but when I went to the site I learned that I’m really into the pulp ring (lavender orange) and the felt ring (red and blue).
Who discovered it: Leandra (again)
Where she found it: The discover page served it to me! They must know I am trying to up my Freakebana game and that I need new bowls.
Why it’s cool: Maybe I am growing up because I have been really into flatware/dishes as of late and I like the simplicity of Year and Day’s offering. The site lets you build your own sets, they come at an approachable price point and really speak to that minimalist Scandinavian vibe that I think I’m into but always prove to myself I am not (see: the elephant wallpaper in my apartment).
What product she’s currently eyeing: Right now I have my eye on their big bowls in the color “daybreak” because I find myself needing bowls all the time and don’t have enough.