Friday, June 28, 2013

Beauty Blogosphere 6.28.13

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

From Head...
"Why go gray in my mid-50s? Because I can": There may be a "cure" for gray hair on the way, but Leah Rozen serves a reminder that there are plenty of reasons to let nature take its course.

I hope nobody from the TSA reads this blog.

...To Toe...
Pedi danger: The bad news is that not only do pedicure chairs start fires, but pedicure razors can be used as weapons too. The good news is that if a pedicurist gone wild attacks you with one, you won't even realize you've been stabbed, because the wounds are as tiny as your delicate little toenails, you gorgeous thing you.

...And Everything In Between:
Beauty labor:
Beauty workers are more in demand than ever: 90% of beauty industry freelancers expect to increase or maintain their rates this year, and 70% of industry executives report that hiring rates are equal to or better than the halcyon days of pre-Lehman Brothers. But stable numbers don't necessarily translate to workers feeling confident about the future of their careers.

Barely there: The woman whose face is on the boxes of all those Sally Hansen depilation products, Marina Asenova, is suing her former agency for nonpayment of funds, as she has yet to see any royalties from her face lining an aisle of every drugstore in America—a practice that may well be par for the course, given the exploitation in the modeling industry. (Thanks to Lindsay for the link!)

White House welcome: Estee Lauder's VP and corporate communications director, Maria Cristina González Noguera, is headed Washington-way to be Michelle Obama's communications director. Who wants a lipstick shade named FLOTUS? 

Price is right: Where wealth goes, beauty ain't far behind: One in 10 residents of the United Arab Emirates spends the equivalent of a one-bedroom apartment in Dubai on beauty products. 

Bad ad: Dove got a slap on the wrist from the National Advertising Division for implying false claims about body washes from rival brands. Misleading side-by-side product demos were cited—as was an image of a bottle of competing body wash encircled in barbed wire, which is apparently a no-no? I don't quite get why the barbed wire image is a problem, to be honest. (Maybe it's retroactively punishing Unilever for that it'll-turn-brown-people-white ad from a few years back.)

The personal is political: With massive nationwide protests going on in her country, a Brazil-based blogger questions the importance of running a bra blog—and comes away with the conclusion that bra fitting is a political issue.

"Halal celebrities": The uptick in hijab fashionistas (hijabistas? wait, I Googled it, and yes, it exists) has begun to shift the non-Muslim vision in the U.S. of Muslim women as being oppressed and hidden underneath shapeless, drab clothes—and more to the point, it's provided a visible outlet for women who wear hijab to explore fashion and beauty. But when does the advice of hijab tutorials turn into tsk-tsking for not meeting this standard of beauty? "[O]f course many Muslim women don’t feel they can emulate J. Lo or Beyoncé. But we can emulate YaztheSpaz and Amenakin. They are the new line of halal celebrities." (Thanks to Tasbeeh for the link!)

Pretty toxic: Just a little reminder that your makeup may contain asbestos. Note that this doesn't apply to European readers—asbestos is among the 1,372 cosmetics ingredients banned by the E.U., but isn't among the ten (ten!) outlawed in the States.

Sleeping beauty: You all know humans grow new skin, but scientists haven't agreed on exactly why. Procter & Gamble to the rescue! ("Sleeping" stem cells, apparently.)

Body talk: Were common sense not enough to convince you, now there's a study showing that body talk to teens is more likely to trigger eating disorders if it takes the form of weight or body size, as opposed to healthy choices.

Edible self-tanner: If you're waffling on the suntan/self-tanner/pale-and-brave-it question this time of year, here's another option to get a nice tan-like glow: Eat more vegetables.

Kitchen beauty: For all the watchdogging I do on here about various beauty companies, I'm not quite sure why I haven't just started making my own beauty products. Whenever that time comes, this comprehensive list of 30 recipes should come in handy! And this set of general guidelines will be helpful too.

Tom Ford Cosmetics focus group.

Dudely dude: Designer Tom Ford is entering the skin care market—but not in a girly way or anything. Says the Estee Lauder group president, "This is a serious, high-ticket men's grooming line with a couple of products with cosmetics benefits to be used in a very masculine way," like in caber tossing and jerking off.

Fashion tips from Mr. T: "Do Calvin Klein, Bill Blass, or Gloria Vanderbilt wear clothes with your name on it? No, of course not. So you tape up the label, and wear your own name."

Beautypalooza: I'm not endorsing these particular products, but I thought this beauty checklist for festivals was solid. (But as it happens, I do use Stila Convertible Color on my cheeks, and sure enough, it works hangover magic—and stays put even through sweaty summer days.)

Breast jokes ever: Awesome collection of mammary humor from Hourglassy—I love it when women can joke about their bodies without making their bodies the punch line or denigrating themselves, and these anecdotes fit the bill. (And for further proof that these stories aren't teeming with self-loathing, note that this list of favorite things about being busty came from the same crop of readers.)

Hey there, handsome: Cristen Conger of How Stuff Works asks where all the handsome women went (and I'm honored that my Thoughts on a Word post on handsome was referenced). The handsome woman is still there—even if you wouldn't know it by the chicks-with-moustaches that pop up on Google Images for the term.

The true cost per wear: "Cost per wear" seems like a sensible way to shop, and if you do it right, it really is. But surely more than a handful of women (ahem) have also used it to justify expensive purchases with fingers crossed, oui? This post looking at the flaws and pitfalls in cost-per-wear theory can help you figure out when it's worth it (versus when you really just wanna buy something expensive).

Body Détente: Once upon a time, bloggers who mentioned body image generally only did so in terms of Why You Should Love Your Body. And then other bloggers who wrote on body image came along and were like, Yo, All the Body Love Talk Is Sort of Oppressing (hi!). And then Sally, ever the wise one, nicely reconciles the mind-sets and stakes a post on body neutrality: "When I see essays, suggestions, and advice from the body love community the main message I hear is that hating your body is counterproductive, not that loving your body is required."


  1. wow, your blog is fantastic.. thrilled to have found you!

  2. I may not comment often, but I read this post EVERY Friday! I really enjoy all your articles and I love the interesting posts you share each week. Thank you for keeping this up!

    1. Thank you, Kourtney! Coming from another beauty blogger, that means all the more.

  3. "Designer Tom Ford is entering the skin care market—but not in a girly way or anything. Says the Estee Lauder group president, "This is a serious, high-ticket men's grooming line with a couple of products with cosmetics benefits to be used in a very masculine way," like in caber tossing and jerking off."

    Laughing so hard at this right now.

    1. Heh, I admit I made myself laugh with that one too--glad it was appreciated!

  4. I'm a big proponent of using handsome to refer to women, where it fits, not least because I think I myself am a candidate. I like it best to describe my mom, too. It seems to connote a true sense of beauty where 'pretty' simply won't do, or is outright inaccurate. I cannot really think of myself as pretty, though I am in moments lovely to myself. There is a severity to 'handsome' that is appropriate to certain kinds of austere, angular beauty especially.

    1. Utterly agreed, you handsome thing--we mostly use it now to refer to "women of a certain age," but I'd like to see it expanded. There's a sturdiness to it, a sense of being well-constructed--and I think we miss something if we boil that down to "pretty." "Good-looking" is close but that's too general/vague for this particular sort of appeal.

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