Yesterday marked the the 248th mass shooting within the United States in 2022 alone. It is only May. In lieu of a newsletter, I present: a poem comprised of copy-and-pasted subject lines and sentences, each pulled from a different email I received this week — sent by news outlets, by beauty brands, by PR reps angling for press coverage. A snapshot of the times.
our nation mourns the innocent victims of the horrific mass shooting at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas
personally victimized by dead skin and clogged pores.
I’ve had enough.
If only I could
turn back the clock!
reverse skin issues,
19 children and two teachers,
An arsenal of weaponry,
an arsenal of skincare products—
EDIT: This poem is part of an ongoing series (here, here, and here.) Its purpose is to juxtapose the very real crises we face in today's world with the way the beauty industry manufactures the false "crises" of aging and acne and going gray and more. As a beauty reporter, I receive hundreds and hundreds of marketing emails per day; the lines in this poem are from actual beauty brands that sent emails and tweets today — brands who chose to push anti-aging products and lipsticks and hair dye in the midst of a national tragedy.
With this poem series, I am trying to hold the beauty industry accountable. I am trying to say, “Stop telling us to worry about wrinkles and pimples and stretch marks when we have shootings and abortion and war and living to worry about.”
With this particular poem, I am trying to show how our country’s culture of violence has infiltrated all aspects of modern life — how it shows up in our “arsenals” of beauty products and our skincare “regimes;” how it convinces us to “fight” acne-causing bacteria and “combat” fine lines. I am trying to show how our country’s culture of beauty glorifies youth — and yet, our country’s leaders have zero regard for the safety of our youth.
This about sums up my feelings:
And this, too:
I hope my deep concern and compassion come through.
No action feels like enough right now — but I donated to Everytown For Gun Safety today, and it felt like something, at least. You can donate here.