Posted in Beauty, Reviews

Stuff I Like: Shirts, Squirts, and…I can’t think of another rhyme that works

I watch NBC’s Fashion Star and I love it.  Instead of making designers create couture out of garbage (which is less design, and more DIY crafting IMHO), designers create for actual buyers.  Of course it’s scripted and just as fixed as any other TV reality show (AMBER SHOULD NOT HAVE GONE HOME), but the fact that you can buy what’s been bought every week, as soon as the episode ends a) is a clever way to capitalize on marketing, b) is a brilliant way to exploit the fear of not being able to get something that you just saw and you HAVE TO HAVE, and c) feels like The Jetsons, so it is amazing.

I have wanted over half of everything I’ve seen on the show, and last season was distraught because Saks kept buying what I liked best and charging over $200 for every single item.  Like I’m going to pay $200 for a shirt?  Pfft.  I’m still combing Ebay, hoping one of the dresses I wanted will pop up.

I missed out on this shirt when it went up for sale at Macy’s, but lucked out finding it on Ebay.  I am in love with it.  It’s a half shirt, quarter sweater, quarter mesh sort of thing you’d find at Contempo Casuals circa 1992.  In other words 100% perfect for me.  It is soft, so soft, well made, well cut, and is also a limited item so I feel kind of special wearing it.  I got mine in black.


If I were going to wear shorts like that with my shirt, which I am not because of that recurring nightmare I have about being a Dallas Cowboy Cheerleader, I would want my legs to look as smooth and shiny as possible.  To that end, I would use a product I just discovered.


First, let’s talk about what I hate in a lotion/oil:  Stickiness, slime-iness, greasiness, grittiness, and skin suffocation.  You know what I mean?  It’s hot here, and can be humid.  If a lotion/oil coats your pores, you can feel like you are suffocating.  It’s awful.  Also awful is what a weirdo I am about getting my hands dirty.  I hate putting lotion in my hands to rub somewhere else, but strangely don’t mind spraying on a lotion (thank you Sunblock Spray!) to rub in.  Body Dew works for me on a lot of levels!

I had a Pure Romance party, last weekend, presented by the lovely Sonia Torres Cortes, and I bought the Green Tea flavor of Body Dew.  I love it!  I am prone to dry skin on my legs–like, flaky skin dry in winter, and just dry in summer.  I was skeptical of how well the Dew would work, but after a few days I can’t imagine living without it.  My skin looks and feels fantastic.  I think this is the best my shins and elbows have felt in years.

It goes on as a light spray (squirt!), and you rub it in.  Seconds later, you can dress over it, and it doesn’t stick, pull, or soak through fabric.  Nice!  And, the green tea scent is fresh and clean, and underwhelming.  I’d actually like the scent to be a little stronger.

Go to Sonia’s website, and she can hook you up.  She can also get you started with Coochy, which is a shaving conditioner.  Something else I was skeptical about because I never believe miracle potions actually are.  This was purported to allow you to shave even the bikiniest areas without causing bumps or rashes.  So far, so good.  It also comes in green tea.

Since we’re talking about unsightly bumps, lets talk about cold sores.  The first cold sore I can remember having came in Kindergarten.  It was massive, the size of a quarter, and covered half my lower lip, and part of the area between my lip and chin–it was so bad, it left a scar. 

My mom treated it with Campho-Phenique, which was the best we could do at the time.  The monster returned in First Grade, with such a horrifying vengence, they wouldn’t even photograph me head-on for my class picture.  They made me pose in profile.

I end up with a cold sore in left-middle of my bottom lip a few times a year.  Now, instead of using the campho, I use Abreva at the first tingle of a blister.  It usually takes about 3 days to clear up completely, but the sore never gets much bigger than a pin head, never goes into the gross scab phase, and doesn’t hurt.  Abreva is one of the things you can always find in my purse, along with Tei-Fu oil, which is my family’s version of Big Fat Greek Wedding Windex.  In fact, I keep a little bottle of that on my desk, too.

That’s it for now!  So, start watching Fashion Star (or watching it on DVR, like I do–Express, Macy’s and Saks update their sites on Friday evenings, so you can shop even if you don’t watch the episode), get yourself some Body Dew, and tell the world about Abreva and Tei-Fu.  I hope you don’t get cold sores, but if you do, I’m telling you that stuff works.


Posted in Uncategorized

Mirror Image

But first…

Isn’t it funny how differently we see ourselves, compared to how others see us? I spent years hating how fat I was–er, and I wasn’t fat. In fact, Karen once told me how I had hurt her self-image by being so obsessed with my own. Our weights weren’t much different, but because I was always so upset about mine, it made her wonder how enormous I thought she was. Never even occurred to me to think she was anything other than fit, by the way.

My self-image was largely colored by having spent some formative years in the entertainment industry, where the standard is 20lbs underweight. I was usually only 5lbs underweight, thus a moose. I was in my 20s before I started feeling okay with my body, and in my 30s and 25lbs overweight before I could enjoy it. You know what started me on the journey?

My mother and I were Christmas shopping at a very busy mall. We were in Macy’s, and it was teeming with shoppers. We got separated (when I stopped in the shoe department), and I set out to find her. As I walked, looking for Mom, I was checking out everyone. Cute haircut here, adorable skirt there, good looking guy, pretty girl. All kinds of things to see.

I noticed a really cute girl through the crowd and was craning to see her better. I couldn’t get a clear look, but her hair was freaking adorable, and I liked what I could see of her sweater. The closer I got, the cuter I thought she was, until I decided that when I passed her, I was going to say so. I like complimenting people. I know it makes my day to be complimented–might make someone elses.

I was still looking out for my mother, but keeping Cute Girl in sight. Little glimpses of her came through the bodies, and I smiled. She smiled back. So cute! Maybe I was going to make a friend? Then, I realized, through the crowd, that we were on a collision course and my attitude toward her changed. She was going to need to step out of the way. I don’t know why I got my back up over it, but I did.

Still couldn’t see her clearly because I was dodging Christmas shoppers, but I could tell we were going to collide if she didn’t step out of the–CRASH!

I didn’t know what hit me. I was stunned. I saw stars. It was like a car accident. My nose hurt so bad!

But where was Cute Girl?

It took me a couple of seconds to shake my head clear. Took me a split second longer to realize that I had walked right into a mirrored column.

Another second, I realized that the cute girl with the sweater and the adorbs hair was…me.

I looked around to see if anyone had noticed, and was happy to see that the other shoppers were engrossed in trying to snatch things out of one another’s hands, and I took off, found my mother, and explained why I suddenly had a splitting headache and couldn’t stop laughing.

See, I had no idea what I looked like. None. You’d think that a girl who spent as much time inspecting her reflection as I did would have a pretty good idea of her own image. Nope. I was clueless. I thought of myself as Little Dull Dumpy.

Presented with my image as someone outside of myself, I had thought I had a great smile, a cute figure, and wanted to meet me. And, presented with that reality came the understanding that my self-image was crap. I had some work to do. I had a lot of work to do.

A couple of years later, Renae and I were sitting in a cafe in New Orleans. I was moaning about never being able to get the exact haircut I wanted. I hated my hair and my crazy cowlicks, and was gesticulating (probably wildly) about how awful it was.

“See that?” I pointed to the back of a girl’s head in a mirror. “That is how it should look! That right there! That is the haircut I want.”

You know where this is going, don’t you?

Renae tilted her head at me, blinking. “Uh, Lane?”

Yes. It was a reflection of the back of my own head. The back of my perfectly coiffed head.

Body dysmorphia is real. I’m very fortunate to have had the embarrassing luck of seeing myself through the eyes of a stranger twice. It’s forced me to really consider how I feel about myself, and forced me to take true stock of what makes me who I am.

What makes me who I am is not what I look like, what I wear, or how awesome my hair looks. What makes me who I am is that I can recognize beauty in other people and appreciate them. What makes me who I am is that I am not jealous when I see another cute girl, but I want to tell her how pretty I think she is. What makes me who I am is that I want to be around people kinder, smarter, funnier, better looking than I. That’s worth a lot more than my hips, thighs, or crooked nostrils.