Curator's corner

Curator's Corner, 5/14/2017

CC logoHello and Happy Mother's Day to all the moms!  If you're not a mom I hope you're having a lovely Sunday.  Unfortunately I am not...our living situation has not improved so we continue to actively look for new Museum headquarters, my 3rd chemical peel went badly (resulted in scabby, oozing wounds, which didn't occur with the first 2 peels - no idea what happened this time), and work has really picked up and will be busy till the end of June.  So things might get a little quiet around here since work stress and house hunting = me having no energy/time left to blog.  Anyway, I'll do my best to keep posting.  And to stop complaining.  ;)

- Here's a nice little read on cosmetics and personal hygiene products in ancient Egypt

- It's always surprising to me how little the cosmetics industry is regulated, which is why I was intrigued by this new bill

- And now for the crazy fads from the past 2 weeks:  pizza slice, "shine line" and mother-of-pearl hair are having a moment, brow art continues full speed ahead, and I have to say I'm digging this new eye makeup trend, remarkably impractical though it is.

- Racked highlights the growing population of recovering makeup addicts.  I can't say I'll ever be a part of their group, but it's good to know they're there.  (I was actually aware of the Makeup Rehab reddit previously since the Museum's very first in-person visitor is a member and told me all about it.)

- I've had my issues with Dove's campaigns before, but this is a new level of dumb.  Equally stupid is this new lipstick "hack" - an easier, more accurate way to determine what a lipstick will actually look like on your lips (and for you to see whether it's flattering) is swatching it on your fingertips.  Finally, when will it end??

The random:

- In '90s nostalgia, the frontman of one of the decade's most prominent bands finished his Ph.D.  I was also super excited about the new season of Twin Peaks...until I read this article indicating that at least 3 characters aren't coming back.  (Two of these absences are due to the fact that the actors who played them have passed away since the show's original run - so sad!)

- A little art history fun.  Also, if this can get funding, surely my museum can.

- Makeup Museum staff's worst nightmare.

- LOL.

What's new with you?


Curator's Corner, 5/2/2017

CC logoA Curator's Corner on a Tuesday?  Sure, why not.  I'm usually late with this feature anyway and end up backdating it, but this weekend was terrible - I'll spare you my whining but suffice it to say that Museum headquarters may have to move soon - so I'm posting this link roundup even later. I hope you enjoy regardless of its tardiness. :)

- Here's a really interesting piece on makeup hoarding and addiction that identified the difference between a hobby and compulsive buying.  I maintain that while I own much more makeup than the average person, I'm not a hoarder since I keep an inventory, regularly clean out my stash and genuinely enjoy everything I buy.  Right?  Right. #denial

- Racked also had an article on Republic Nail's Frida Kahlo polishes.  I was so pleased to see a shout-out to the Museum's post on the topic, but still kinda wished they had interviewed me since, well really, who has more expertise discussing the intersection of makeup and art?  Oh well.

- As you know I can't get enough of flash-in-the-pan fads.  In the past 2 weeks barbed wire brows have replaced feather brows, geode nails are the new geode highlights, lips take on a marbled look, and for some reason butt glitter has migrated upwards to boob glitter.

- Meanwhile, the unicorn frappuccino mania has spilled over into the beauty sphere, with nails and hair inspired by the limited edition Starbucks drink.  The drink may be gone now but the unicorn beauty craze is still going strong - even guys are getting their unicorn magic on.

- Speaking of guys, just when we thought we had reached peak crazy makeup applicator, one girl put part of her boyfriend's nether regions to cosmetic use.  (Link NSFW, obviously).  It's stunts like these that make me appreciate beauty tutorial parodies all the more.

- Happy (belated) 420.

The random:

- In '90s nostalgia, I greatly enjoyed the oral histories of both Romy and Michele's High School Reunion and Austin Powers, along with this write-up of one of my favorite Yo La Tengo albums.  All three turned 20.  In related news, I. Am. So. Old.

- I love me some bubbly, but bubbly with glitter is even better.

- More beverage fun: I was initially kind of annoyed about the aforementioned unicorn frappuccino since there was no mermaid frap, but there is!  I really really want one, especially since it sounds like it would be way yummier than the unicorn one (it apparently tasted like Sweet Tarts so I definitely wouldn't have liked it) but I hate the thought of annoying the crap out of the barista

What's been catching your eye?


Curator's Corner, 4/16/2017

CC logoHappy Sunday and Happy Easter to those celebrating.  Here's your bi-weekly batch of links.

- Smashbox is now a world record holder for the most expensive lip art, ringing in at a whopping $26,500.

- After a similar article published a few weeks ago, I really want to ask this author why she has such a hatred for all fun makeup.  This is a topic I've explored before, but I believe women are smart enough to know the difference between nostalgia and infantilization.

- The latest trends sweeping Instagram include feather brows, floral eyeliner, holographic hair and leopard print hair.  Meanwhile, ice cream flavored lip balm is the newest member of the foody beauty family.

- "I get enough FOMO from social media alone — I don’t need my beloved beauty products making me feel like I’m a loser as well."  Racked offers a good piece on time-saving beauty products

- In racist/offensive/bad taste beauty news, we have Nivea's (now pulled) "white purity" ads and a tutorial to recreate United Airlines passenger David Dao's bloodied mouth.  Ugh.

- But at least this is funny

The random:

- In '90s nostalgia, here's a list of little-known facts about my favorite movie and a truly hilarious supercut of Seinfeld bloopers.  Also, Tamagotchis are officially back and Hanson's megahit "Mmmbop", a.k.a. the most annoying song ever, turned 20 this week.

- On the art/museum front, these are possibly the most unimaginative "art-inspired" bags I've ever seen.  You know what's great though?  My favorite little egg starring in famous paintings

- Eggs remind me of Easter, which brought in the usual fun stuff:  the Washington City Paper resurrected the Post's Peeps Diorama contest, while a baker used 1,500 peeps to make a life-size Disney princess.  And I'd be curious to check out this new bunny museum.  Finally, I'm somewhat ashamed to admit that I'd probably eat both of these pizzas

Speaking of novelty foods, I'm not sure how I feel about clear coffee but pink pineapples are a total win for me, pineapple fiend that I am.

How are you doing? 


Curator's Corner, 4/2/2017

CC logoLots o' links!  Enjoy.

- Racked explores the history of makeup perceived as "tricking" men and delves into Sephora's Beauty Talk online community.

- Current fads include butt glitter (it's exactly what it sounds like), meme makeup, and on the hair front, geode highlights and rainbow roots are trending.  Also, I think we've reached peak wacky makeup applicators

- File these stencils and this nail polish under "completely superfluous but still fun" beauty inventions.

- Things I disagree with:  the "fact" that the average woman spends $300,000 on beauty products in her lifetime (I'm a collector and there's no way I will ever spend even close to that!), a no-makeup cafe, and this rather vitriolic response to unicorn makeup.  I might roll my eyes at some of the sillier trends that make the rounds, but at the end of the day I don't care what crazy thing you're doing with makeup - no one's forcing me or anyone else to apply foundation with a hard-boiled egg, you know?  So this author needs to back off...especially since she concludes with suggesting that people try, ugh, contouring instead of fun sparkly makeup.

- As a follow up to that piece and also my report on the holographic/iridescent/mythical being makeup craze, I much preferred this in-depth article on the history of the trend.  It's a great read, plus the author, like me, predicts mermaids will replace unicorns as makeup inspiration this year.

- Kudos to Sephora for their new makeup class and the founder of Lipslut for their "Fuck Trump" lipstick.

- Neon strobing proves you can never apply too much highlighter, driver's license photos be damned.

The random:

- In '90s nostalgia, here are 10 quintessential movies from the decade as chosen by The A.V. Club staff.  Not sure I agree with all of their picks, but at least my top 2 (Pulp Fiction and Clueless) made the cut.  Additionally, The Awl rounds up the top '90s scandals.  Juicy!

- "Toys become animal spirits, cuddly receptacles of love, companionship and magic."  Almost cried when I read about this very touching exhibition of stuffed animals.  Also, who wants to go to the chocolate museum with me?!

- Just in time for Easter, please enjoy these bunny succulents.  And if I didn't kill every plant I've ever owned, I'd get these dolphin ones.

- Finally!

- LOL.

What's going on with you?


Curator's Corner, 3/19/2017

CC logoHappy (almost) spring!  Here's your bi-weekly link roundup.

- Three huge beauty news items:  1.  MAC will be available at Ulta.  Now if they would just come to Sephora I'd be a happy girl. 2. There is an entire '90s inspired makeup line.  How perfect would I be to create products for it?!  3.  Urban Decay will be launching a Basquiat collection on April 20.  I'm glad that the potential issues with this collection were mostly addressed...but I'll be sure to expand on this when I get the whole collection in my greedy little paws!

- Speaking of paws, you can now smell like kitten fur

- Lipstick is so pretty to look at, even under a microscope.

- This is a great followup to my brief post on makeup packaging recycling.

- In beauty history, Collector's Weekly had an excellent profile of hallowed brand Santa Maria Novella

- Here's some evidence of what I've known for years (and one of the major reasons I love makeup).

- A friendly reminder not to use LUSH bath bombs as highlighter.  File this under WHY??  With the spate of highlighters flooding the market at all price points I have no idea why you'd try to use a bath product as one.

- Again, WHY??

The random:

- In '90s nostalgia, Hanson has announced a tour, while Mental Floss unravels the history of those bizarre Mentos commercials. (I wish they also had a history of the Snapple lady.) Meanwhile, musicians reflect on the legacy of Biggie Smalls in honor of the 20-year anniversary of his passing, while in more upbeat news, I'm celebrating the 20th birthday of one of the many great albums by my favorite band.  Birthday wishes are also in order for Buffy the Vampire Slayer (20) and My Cousin Vinny (25).

- Will mermaid-inspired eats replace the unicorn food trend?  I hope so.

- This new fashion museum sounds great but I kinda wish Chanel would donate $6 million to my museum - you'd think they'd want their cosmetics line to be preserved along with their clothing, right?

- Yas queen!!

How have you been?  Are you excited for spring?


Curator's Corner, 3/5/2017

CC logoA very long overdue Curator's Corner. 

- Not exactly the hardest-hitting piece on beauty, but I was so honored to be quoted in this Slate article!  More thought-provoking was this article in The Atlantic.

- Is Kanye trolling us or what?  He will have some competition though, what with Rhianna, Lisa Frank and the girl who coined "on fleek" all starting their own lines. 

- I'd love to get my hands on these delectable Starbucks-inspired bath bombs but I'm afraid Museum staff would eat them.

- A sobering reminder that glitter isn't always fun.  And speaking of knowing where your makeup is coming from, try to buy from a trusted retailer! (I admit I'm guilty of going the ebay route myself sometimes.)

- Not really understanding this "snogging" lipstick trend (a.k.a. "lollipop" lips), it just looks like some horrible allergic reaction. But I'm on board with the neon eye.

- I've always wanted to write a thorough post on the history of fake beauty marks, but Racked beat me to it.

- I guess partnering with a fragrance company wasn't good enough for Hasbro, who is now seeking to trademark the scent of Play-Doh.  Is there really that much demand for a perfume that smells like clay?!

- Hygge beauty is the new athleisure beauty.

The random:

- Started watching Desus and Mero about a month ago and I'm loving it.  Actually, I'm loving pretty much all of Viceland's programming...although perhaps I should stop watching Needles and Pins, since it makes want to get some gigantic tattoo that I know I'll regret eventually. 

- In '90s nostalgia, check out this oral history of TV show Daria, which turned 20 last week.  Also, ultimate supervixen Shirley Manson and the rest of Garbage will be releasing an autobiography.

- Another reminder to please, for the love of God, be alert when taking a museum selfie

- Speaking of museums, I had a delightful time at the BMA yesterday seeing the Guerilla Girls exhibition.  Sailor Babo wanted some cultural enrichment too so we took him along.  You can see his adventures here.  :)

How have you been?












Curator's Corner, 2/12/2017

CC logoSome mid-February links. 

- Thoroughly enjoyed this interview with MDMFlow founder Florence might remember MDMFlow from my 2014 post on the weird lipstick color trend.

- On the beauty history front, Byrdie had a nice little roundup of vintage makeup products, and I'm head over heels in love with these images from Shiseido's official monthly magazine.  More thought-provoking was this piece on the history of women's battle against body hair.  I have to admit that if it were more socially acceptable I'd never shave my legs or armpits again.

- Attention, pizza fiends:  the eyeliner of your dreams has landed.  You could even use this pizza wheel-like cutter to apply it.  If pizza isn't regal enough for you check out princess eye makeup.  Meanwhile, nail art gets political (and possibly illegal in some states).

- Finally, here are two beauty fads that downright confused me.

The random:

- Edward Hopper is one of my favorite artists, so I'm loving these animated gifs of his paintings. 

- There is much '90s nostalgia to be celebrated!  I posted a while back that Wayne's World will be making its way back into theaters for its 25th anniversary, but Wayne and Garth's hometown of Aurora is pulling out all the stops. Mike Myers has also done a few interviews about this classic comedy.  In other '90s related news, it's very clear there won't be a Pulp Fiction sequel (or prequel), which, honestly, I'm totally okay with.  It would never measure up to the original.  It's also very clear that some '90s interior design trends need to stay in the decade.  Finally, can I get a "woohoo" for the 20th anniversary of Blur's "Song 2"

- Chocolate Peppermint Crunch will probably always be my favorite Ben and Jerry's flavor, but these new ones sound promising.

What's new with you?  Are you doing anything for Valentine's Day?








Curator's Corner, 1/29/2017

CC logoLinky time!

- Loved this round up of old Tussy ads.

- Let's hear it for the boy: following on the heels of Cover Girl and Maybelline's use of male models, YouTuber Lewys Ball will be Rimmel's new spokesperson.

- How peaceful would it be to have your makeup done by a Buddhist monk?

- Wire and unicorn horn nails are really upping the 3D manicure ante.  Meanwhile, blorange and Lite Brite hair are the latest trends for tresses.  And if all of these are too tame for you, try out some star-shaped glitter as seen at Berlin Fashion Week and Dior's spring 2017 couture show.

- Glad to see I wasn't the only one buying all the highlighters last year - sales of this product jumped 44%!

The random:

- In '90s nostalgia, I appreciated this clip of the some of the biggest bands of the decade (save for Nirvana).  Plus, Quentin Tarantino's Reservoir Dogs turns 25, and Stereogum notes that both the Mighty Mighty Bosstones' hit "The Impression That I Get" and Built To Spill's album Perfect From Now On hit the big 2-0.  As always with these milestones, I feel unbelievably ancient.

- Cosmo featured the U.S.'s growing merfolk community and a hilarious mermaid name generator to boot.

- Hooray!  So happy that the great signs from the historic women's march will be preserved in museums.

- Yet another exhibition on Riot Grrrl-inspired's great and all but still bummed that my work on it is never acknowledged.  Sigh.

How have you been?  What's been catching your eye lately?












Curator's Corner, 1/15/2017

CC logoWelcome to the first link round up of the new year.  Enjoy.  :)

- Still obsessed with it turns out you can incorporate this concept into your beauty routine.

- Maybelline is following in Cover Girl's progressive footsteps with their new male spokesperson.  But, as I've surmised in passing before, is marketing makeup to men really so forward-thinking or just a money grab?

- Would love to see this new perfume museum!

- Here are the latest scoops on Bobbi Brown and Pat McGrath - totally different styles but both so influential.

- Broadly covers dumpster diving for makeup (interestingly, this isn't a new practice).

- Smart hairbrushes are the new smart mirrors.

- Big thumbs up to these women.

- Loved this collection of hair product ads from the '80s and '90s

The random:

- Check out my favorite band doing some amazing covers on New Year's Eve, plus I can't wait for their live album.

- If Gudetama is my spirit mascot, Aggretsuko is my husband's.

- In '90s nostalgia, Wayne's World will be back in select theaters for its 25th anniversary, Cosmo takes a look back at the fashion from the 1999 Golden Globes, and you can also create your very own Big Kahuna burger from Pulp Fiction.

- In other pop culture news, I'm dying to see this movie.  Normally I'm not into musicals but this one centers on evil mermaids - how bad could it be?

- Must be nice to have $1 billion to build your own museum.  Sigh.

- Could you imagine picking up your prescription in this pharmacy?!

How's 2017 treating you thus far?

Curator's Corner, 12/18/2016

CC logoA very long overdue link roundup.

- In cosmetics history, these vintage lipstick and powder-making videos have been making the rounds. (I actually received an inquiry about the latter asking if I knew whether the machine was in any museums!)

- As a follow up to my post on "active beauty" it seems the trend isn't fading next year, as Tarte will be debuting an entire line of "athleisure" cosmetics.  Apparently this and other products from Supergoop and First Aid beauty will be part of "Sephora's initiative spotlighting athleisure merchandise for early 2017."  (Yes I know the WWD article is behind a paywall but I did manage to get that much information from the article intro via Feedly).  Also, Racked basically came to the same conclusion I did about athleisure makeup.

- Move over, 100 layers: the new trend is using just one thing to make up your whole face, be it glitter or food.  Speaking of which, check out this Nutella hair dye and chocolate manicure.  As for me, I was more impressed by these amazing art history nails.

- Korean beauty usually gets all the attention in terms of the most popular innovations to take over the Western world, but China has also carved out a notable place in the Western beauty stratosphere. 

- I thought we had seen the holiday lights beard trend before, but I was getting it mixed up with the beard ornaments fad of 2014.

- Don't know whether to laugh or cry at people's confusion of bath bombs with toilet cleaners.  On the one hand it's amusing, on the other hand, how dumb do you have to be?  But this is definitely funny since no one was hurt. 

The random:

- The more I read about hygge, the more I realize I've been trying to achieve it for years (especially with last year's holiday/winter exhibition.) 

- On the museum front, check out this list of the world's most bizarre museums (there were a few I didn't know about!), along with this Japanese museum of rocks that look like faces and the first burger museum in the U.S.

- Oh, shut up Jezebel.  Mermaid blankets are awesome.  Also, since we now have unicorn hot chocolate, how about mermaid hot chocolate?

- August can't come quickly enough!  Also, here's a sweet little piece on the family dynamics of Bob's Burgers.

How are you?  I'm still sick, meh.  But I'm determined to be healthy in time for Christmas!