Friday, September 23, 2011

Beauty Blogosphere 9.23.11

What's going on in beauty this week, from head to toe and everything in between.

Bedtime makeup is for those afraid to be a total glamourpuss like Miss Golightly.

From Head...
Sleeping beauty: Is this a Thing? Has this been around for a while? Makeup for when you're sleeping? I mean, I admit this would be sort of awesome for early sleepover phases of a relationship (ooh la la!) but, I dunno, those early phases are sort of a handy test, too, you know? Like, if I can't let him see me without makeup, why am I letting him see me without clothes?

Big gulp: The world's first antiwrinkle pill! I'm going to swallow it on half my body for a month and then post pictures.

...To Toe...
Playing footsie: South Africa communications minister files an expense report including $1,300 in pedicures and manicures.

...And Everything In Between:
DIY divas: The new group of YouTube makeup gurus are teens showing other teens how to make their own cosmetics. This is totally brilliant—who didn't love all those DIY recipes in Seventeen? It seems like these girls are sharing information in a particularly inventive way and calling attention to the overpricing of makeup, which, now that they can order ingredients like mica and magnesium stearite directly from sites like DIY Cosmetics, they know the actual value of.

Mutant beauty: New beauty line FCX-DNA is incredible if for no reason other than its level of scienctific BS. They'll test your DNA to "detect mutations in certain genes which affect skin aging" and then recommend appropriate products, which have been "developed [using] a process to extract the essence from organically grown fruits and vegetables without harming its texture or genetics." Other awesome words in the press release include: nutrient metabolism, dermagenomics, micronized. CAN'T WAIT!

Nails painted like antidepressants: No comment!

Avon calling:
A Q&A for investors interested in Avon after the corruption charges filed earlier this year.

Mary Kay China sales to overtake U.S. sales by next year:
Mary Kay is investing $25 million in a distribution center in China, which makes total sense given that because of its sales method the company doesn't need to rely on shopping spaces like malls.

Beyond Marie Curie: The copy here reads suspiciously cheerleader-like, but the point is well-taken: More than 50% of L'Oréal's cosmetic scientists are women, and the company encourages cross-disciplinary women in science too with five $100,000 grants each year to women scientists.

Good news for consumers down under: Cosmetics laws in Australia are becoming streamlined to be more consumer-friendly.

Dead Sea: Flagship Ahava store shuttering in London due to anti-Israel protests.

Halal cosmetics: How to market halal cosmetics? Well, given that 23% of the world population is Muslim, there's a head start already—but this piece points out that halal cosmetics certification also qualifies a product as strictly vegan. Cross-marketing opportunities!

Fly me: With all the press surrounding Pan Am (which I don't plan on watching but am terribly curious to find out if any of the lessons from Arlie Russell Hochschild's study on flight attendants and emotional labor, The Managed Heart, are portrayed), this British Airways ad is particularly interesting. As Deep Glamour notes, it's impossible to pretend that flying as a passenger—or even as a flight attendant—is glamorous, given how un-glamorous flights are now. But by relying on the masculine glamour of old-time aviators, the message still gets across.

The state of supermodels: Great piece at Grantland (a new discovery for me, which is why I missed this piece when it was published in August) on the intersection of the self as brand, the valorization of vanity, and why that means we've likely met the last great American supermodel, Ms. Cindy Crawford.

Beauty from within: Balance is coming out with a nutrition bar that has beauty benefits. The 120-calorie Nimble bar will feature antioxidants, beta carotene, lutein, and tiny elves that massage your face from the inside.

Hand me the man-shampoo, Billy!

No girls allowed!: Proctor & Gamble is working with CVS to create a "Guy Aisle" so men don't have to "weed through the pink razors, floral body wash, and hundreds of shampoo formulations" when buying their grooming products, because unlike us dizzy girls who just love to titter over all the AMAZING FLORAL BODY WASHES in the drugstore, "Men are buyers, not shoppers," said Michael Norton, director, external relations, male grooming at Gillette. No news yet as to whether the boys-only aisle will be located in a secret tree club house at which one has to know the super-secret password ("boobies").

Beauty scandal!: A former Miss Utah was sued by a beauty product company that claimed she stole and then resold their goods; she's countersuing, saying that she was given the goods by the company under the auspices of a charitable donation, and then decided to sell the products and donate the proceeds to the same charity. It's small-time and confusing, and the moral of the story is, don't be Miss Utah.

"A very public table": Interesting article at Psychology Today about the inherent risk—and inherent solutions—of eating disorders among orthodox Jewish women.

"I LOVE MY BOOBIES": Leah at Hourglassy takes a moment of Jessica Simpson appreciation, and I'll sign onto that. (I don't care for her music, but enjoyed "The Price of Beauty," and I think she does a nice job of talking about body image stuff with an inquisitive, open manner and not seeming pat.) "So a celebrity who publicly says she loves her body, especially one who regularly receives public criticism, is a major win in my book."

Inked: A tattooed academic—whose work focuses on the normalization of tattoos and its effect on what was once a distinct subculture—on what might signal a shift in the way tattooed women are viewed. And, surprise surprise: The more accepted tattoos are, the closer its wearers are expected to be to the beauty norm: "Yes, tattoo magazines feature a lot of tattooed women, but which tattooed women?" (via Feminaust)

Model me, model you: MAC's new UK campaign makes over non-models who just love makeup, and for once I've got jack to say about such campaigns! The pictures look great.

Inner love: There's a lot of body acceptance in the blogs I read, which, obviously, is fantastic. But there's an irony there: One of the mantras of loving your body is focusing on the inside--which can be hard to do when you're experiencing doubts about your worth in other areas. Sally at Already Pretty borrows here from body love principles and applies them (and some others) to dealing with a sense of inadequacy in the realm of achievement. (I particularly liked this because the transition from school to job was hard for me, since I was so used to getting regular and positive feedback and suddenly was just expected to, you know, do my job.)
Edited to add: On the off-chance you read me and haven't yet discovered Already Pretty, today's your day to hop over and check it out, as I'm guest posting there today. Topic: Beauty and visibility: "Every choice we make about beauty is a choice about being seen. And the more time we spend focusing on the minutiae of beauty, the less time we spend focused on one possible outcome of beauty work—heightened cultural visibility."

What can a year bring?: Elissa at Dress With Courage asks: What sacrifices have you made for beauty? I've got a rather dark take on the study about how 16% of British women would trade a year of their life for the perfect body—I'm sort of like, if it means it would put an end to all my body struggles, then sure, sign me up! What's a year? But Elissa has an answer ready for cynics like me: "[A year can bring] the possibility of greatness that we all look forward to, the idea that things will probably get better, that we can grow and change into the people we dream of being."

Mirror U: Kjerstin Gruys of Mirror Mirror Off the Wall weighs in on the mirror-free high school in the U.K.: "Some people have suggested that this ban prevents creative expression. I call bullshit."

Chasing beauty: Lisa Hickey's stellar piece about being addicted to beauty is a must-read, even as it's painful: "When I’m beautiful and I’m with you, I’m wondering if the guy across the room thinks I’m beautiful. I think beauty is going to connect us; but I’m not connecting with you, I’m connecting with a beautiful image of myself that I think you might like."

Go fetch: Why do we use the word fetching both as a compliment and a command?

Attack of the 50-foot blogger: Caitlin at Fit and Feminist on the power and politics of women's height: "Height, like physical strength, is one of those things we don’t really care much for in women because we say it upsets the 'natural order of things,' which is that men are the Protectors and women the Protected."


  1. Hey Autumn! I am visiting for the first time. Via Already pretty. I love the way you write. I so feel connected. I am glad to have visited your blog. I will go through all the other old posts when time permits.


  2. Hi Autumn! What a great blog. I really like it! Keep up the great work!

  3. Hey, thanks again for the link love!

    I love that Grantland hired Molly Lambert to write for them. Her work at This Recording was my favorite thing about that site, and so it does my heart good to know she's getting more exposure.

    Okay, now off to read eighteen thousand links. :)

  4. About the first bit. That's just a beauty treatment, not makeup. It's kind of like how "we" put on wrinkle cream (treatment) at night. This does ... something. Stuff. Apparently, as I read it, it works throughout the night to make a girl glow come morning (and reduces pores, and reduces "age"). Not bad for those early nights with someone? (Thought not the intent.) No one(ok no guy) minds when the makeup comes off, but some people aren't so sure about mornings? (Although I think guys are pretty into girls in the mornings. ;-))

  5. Hey there, I'm Lisa Hickey, aka "beauty addict". Thanks for the shoutout. Love what you're doing here. That's the whole thing -- let's just *talk* about it, honestly, and figure out what makes sense as a way to navigate through the world without fear.

  6. "More than 50% of L'Oréal's cosmetic scientists are women, and the company encourages cross-disciplinary women in science too with five $100,000 grants each year to women scientists."

    I wonder how those female scientists feel about all the faux science in cosmetic advertising. Are they all reading about FCX-DNA and beating their heads against their desks?

  7. Shruti and Sascha, pleased to meet you! Thanks for coming by.

    Caitlin, thank you for the awesome content!

    Ella Mode, heh, I think plenty of men are happy to have a woman in their bed at any old hour... Thanks for clarifying about the product--it seems that it does "something" but also is targeted to let you have smoother-looking skin upon wakening? To be honest I probably would have liked this back in the day...

    Lisa, that's exactly it--starting the conversation is the goal here. So glad we're doing just that!

    Rebekah, I've wondered about that too--are they banging their heads on their desks, or are they all, "Damn, why didn't we come up with that first?"

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