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Beauty Blocker: Perfection Is Depressing

As we walked home from a rare date night out in our neighborhood, my husband and I dangerously flirted with time. We’d been having such a great evening, why not stay out a bit longer?

“We did tell Sarah we wouldn’t be home until 10,” I reminded him as we each took out our phones for quick consults. We were standing just outside a new pub, opened about a month earlier, that we hadn’t checked out yet.

“Come on. Let’s be crazy,” My husband smiled big as he swung open the door for me. As usual, I bee-lined for the bathroom, where I became suddenly and incredibly depressed.

Walking in there was like being swallowed by a massive porn vagina with teeth. The walls were plastered with Playboy covers. No! It was not the nude women thing that got me.

Marilyn Monroe, Anna Nicole Smith, Kate Moss, Lindsey Lohan, Jenna Jameson, Brooke Shields, etc. etc. etc. I was being drowned in overly retouched sorrow, and it made me want to puke.

I came out of the bathroom and ordered a seltzer. Stonily I waited while my husband bantered with the bartender. “Cool bathroom!” I heard someone say.

The subject is so complex, so already beaten down, I’m not sure how to articulate my thoughts best. All I can say is that  history has taught us over and over and over that being idolized for physical perfection is lonely, depressing, and hallow. And we buy it up and serve it with whipped cream on top.

Is it art? Is it beautiful in it’s pain? Romantic in it’s tragedy? Fuck that. I’m finished romanticizing women who were abused, and pressured, and drug addicted.

I have great sympathy for anyone’s personal struggles, and the fact that they may become public. That sounds really horrible. So to be clear, I’m not hating the players. I’m hating the game.

Guess parenthood’s made me prude. And I’m really glad.

hugh hefner sucks

And on a lighter note, here’s some awesome young girls talking about how much it sucks to be compared to unreality, and how incredibly liberating it is to be stoked about their uniqueness. I love that this project is about putting the control of how beauty is expressed into the subject’s own hands.

Selfies Project

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Fit And Fluffed: Veggie Surprise

My grey, bloody steak loving husband has suddenly grown a conscience. The other day he says, ‘There’s really no difference, intelligence wise, between the cat we keep as part of our family and the animals we slaughter to eat. The pigs are probably smarter. I want to try to eat less meat’

When you have a husband who doesn’t cook, you learn to interpret such statements as requests. At first I was like um…. tofu? Tofu roast? Tofu pie? Tofu loaf? Shit! Shit roast? Luckily I have Fresh Direct to simplify such quandaries for me. Here are some of the EASY recipes we’ve recently enjoyed.

-Smashed White Bean and Avacado Club. Also vegan. This sandwich is refreshing, tasty, filling, and surprisingly delicious. This is not a date meal. This is not a pre-interview meal. This is a great picnic meal, where the air is fresh and one can run away at any time.

-Aromatic Vegetable Curry. Also vegan. So delicious!! This curry has the perfect balance of flavors, although a little salt was needed.There’s a ton of prep, but the actual cooking is super easy. Heads up, this recipe is for 8. I didn’t realize that and ended up having to freeze a portion, which was fine but not amazing.

-Lemony Orzotto. Not vegan. Great as a meal or a side, this dish is a wonderful blend of creamy and lemony and is easier than making risotto. I don’t  even like risotto, but I loved this orzotto!

When you too hear the veggie calling, do not hold fear in your heart. Release that fear, and embrace what should be the largest part of our diet.

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The Goods: Cutest ‘Lil Pot-O-Lube Ever

On the dead-end street I mostly grew up on, one house contained a family of assholes. Not that we were the best behaved ourselves. Once my dad told the daughter of the asshole family (aged about 10) that it looked like she’d been getting enough to eat lately. In those exact words.

Anyway, so I was playing with the little asshole kids one day and was assigned the task of filling as many vessels as I could find with muddy water. Or anything else dirty/gross I could find. We were on a mission, the task at hand being to terrorize another boy one street down any way possible. The asshole family’s son was leader, having been on a covert reconnoissance mission during which he discovered the WMD. A massive tub of Vaseline on the to-be victim’s nightstand. It was claimed that the boy in question had ‘chapped lips’ but our leader knew better. Our leader knew this kind of pervert needed mud in the face!

The boy’s mother stopped us in our grimy tracks and sent us home, which I was glad for. Actually dragging the Sprite bottle filled with creek water over to the boy’s cheerful, perfectly trimmed front lawn felt really messed up. Like we were the deviants.

But I thought of this story over the weekend when my friend Jess snagged this adorable mini-tub of Vaseline during a quick drugstore detour. Is it not the cutest? If only they’d had this packaging 20 years ago, a young boy may have been saved some ridicule.

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Getting Gorgeous: Happiness Isn’t The What, It’s The Who

I excitedly took psychology as an elective in high school, only to be frustrated by how much of it was filled with long, boring experiments and analysis that seemed to merely take the long road to state the obvious.

Money can’t buy happiness. Family comes first. Treat your neighbor as you would like to be treated.

Duh! Obvious.

The more expensive the handbag, the brighter the soul. Money comes first. Treat only people who you can gain something from nicely.

Um. Is this a trick?

Over the past week or so I’ve watched two documentaries on how the brain works, one called Happy and one called This Emotional Life. They both stress that there’s a ton of research definitively showing that it matters more to our happiness that we have a tight crew than if we’re loaded. Even if we don’t really like everyone in said crew. It’s essential to be cared about, but maybe even more so that we care about others.

Well isn’t that precious. And cheap! And kind of obvious.

I hope this weekend you all get to watch the Kardashians with someone you love.

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Exquisite Every Day: 5 Easy Tips For A Salon Blow Dry

How does the blow dry magic happen? Why is it that even the most seasoned blow dry veteran thinks their hair will never look as good as the day it was styled by a professional blower and fluffer?

Short of growing an extra set of arms and eyes out of your tush, here’s 5 tips for getting your hair as close to that salon look and feel as possible.

1. Work your product all the way through the hair. Dedicate a whole minute to working the product through all the hair, roots to tips, over and under. Often we just slather it on over the top section and carry on, causing the hair’s texture to be uneven.

2. Know some tools. Use an attachment like the Narrow Concentrator to direct the flow of the air to focus on the particular piece you are drying so that it styles much easier. A round brush like the Ion Golden Round Brush is a great brush at a great price for most popular blow-drys.

3. Start with your hands, pulling at groups of hair quickly as you move the blower around your head. This helps get the initial dampness out and loosens up your muscle memory. Often it’s tough to break out of insufficient beauty habits because those muscles just don’t want to do an action any differently than they ever have.

4. Make sure the hair is completely dry, using sections. Typically home-blown hair is left retaining some dampness, causing the hair to be less movable or ‘flowing’ after it does dry because the follicles haven’t been isolated.

5. Speaking of follicles, utilize the cold-shot feature to seal the deal. Once the hair is completely dry, give it an over-all blow with the cold shot, using your fingers to get through all the hair. Feel how nicely you can run your fingers through it afterward, just like when you leave the salon!

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