Please Do Not Mew Yourself Into the Void
beauty roundup for august!!! alert alert!!
Greetings. Here is a compilation of beauty stories I’ve been thinking about lately:
On the return of beauty experiences:
In the UK, Elemis is launching a No-Touch Facial.
In NYC, Sofie Pavvitt’s studio has been trying out remote-controlled facials in studio! I have been meaning to check her out since Rio (at The Strategist) fawns over her all the time. I don’t think I’m brave enough to get a facial anytime soon, though. Still! If you are! They are available here, and I think the remote-controlled aspect of it is the safest option you can realistically ask for.
For body treatments and manicures - Chillhouse Soho is taking appointments again.
I personally am still fine with doing at home extractions and using my NuFace Mini. I have not been using it terribly consistently, which is the point of it - but I have still noticed skin tightening! If you have been hemming and hawing over it as your quarantine splurge purchase, I think it’s a worthy one. You can use my referral code for SkinStore and get 25% off. Rakuten also offers 8% cash back on top of that - so you’d save a pretty penny (like, $35?) if you hop through the Rakuten portal and use the code ARABELLE-R2 at checkout. I use the NuFace twice a week. Maybe on a Sunday you spend an hour watching Selling Sunset and doing a long skincare session while judging Davina. I bought mine early into quar with the funds I usually set aside for facials, and it’s been a good replacement. I compared the results using my $20 acupuncture micro current pen to NuFace, and I still think NuFace is better. It electrocutes me less, which is important!
I am preoccupied with the no-touch facial thing because so much of beauty experience is about touch, about intimacy with strangers. I am very grateful my partner is hypervigilant with extracting my nose pores for me. Gross, mundane acts of love are the best kind!
On beauty being fucked as all hell:
Unfortunately mewing has now made The New York Times. If you are morbidly fascinated with eugenics as beauty politics and it’s related, undying orthodentistry (is that a word? Probably not.) then this profile is for you! As I have spent the past two months on related research, I immediately blacked out upon reading the opening paragraph, but I think it’s a good profile from my speed-skimming, because every actual professional in the field roasts them mercilessly.
One of the books I read recently also had eugenics in it - I won’t spoil it much for you, but Mexican Gothic rules. It’s classic gothic horror set in the Mexican countryside. I listened to it as an audiobook and it was glorious, textural, and well researched in the little details.
No surprise, but counterfeit beauty products are on the rise during COVID. Risky business!
Related to eugenics in the sense that philanthropies were huge donors for eugenics research throughout the 20th century - surprise - this piece in The Baffler is a good run down on what the writer called “the buffer zone,” or how the non-profit industrial complex fails. Given that many beauty companies also donate to non-profits as a protective barrier from cancellation - it’s worth a read.
The Reverse Pyramid of Telfar: On Telfar and accessibility as a growth strategy. Yes, I bought one of the bags on the pre-order day. What color did you get?
When June Jordan and Buckminster Fuller Tried to Redesign Harlem, The New Yorker. I wrote a little bit about June Jordan’s work regarding Harlem on this newsletter two years ago but never did further research - this piece was a real delight to read.
And now, for coping mechanisms. . .
The other week, I was instagram targeted into buying The Anti-Anxiety Notebook ($34). Reader, I of course bought it immediately, and seriously contemplated buying several to give as gifts to friends with similarly disastrous mental health levels. It arrived last week and is both beautiful and helpful! Though, I think the color ways of the text/paper could be designed better to be more readable…. dark blue on light blue isn’t as readable as good ol’ B/W, even if it’s aesthetically pleasing. Regardless, if you are looking for a good mental health companion journal, I think this one is lovely. It teaches you Cognitive Behavioral Therapy methods of coping.
Finally, this poem by Lily Zhou:
Have you ever heard of the Myolift Mini? It’s another microcurrent device but it seems to be more powerful than Nuface and used by aestheticians on their clients. You use it 3-4 x a week For the first 6 weeks and then like once a week for maintenance. I’ve been really enjoying it and already seeing results after a week of use although I imagine it might feel a little less intuitive than the Nuface at first for a lot of ppl. There’s also no weird shocking sensation or anything like that which is a plus. I promise I’m not sponsored or anything I just really like it and surprised I haven’t heard more ppl talking about it!