Meditation on a weave

Weaves and wigs are not fake. Moreover, they are really the hair of people who wear them. To say they are not is to idealize some reification of ‘nature’ that strips women, femmes and other weave-wearers of agency. What is nature, but the design of thousands of years? Nature is something that you cannot help, and females being active is viewed as deviant, ‘unnatural’, like Eve picking the apple. To patriarchy, the masculine is the active, the feminine is the passive.

There is also a racist undertone, because stereotypically weaves are associated with black women although all races wear them. By saying that weaves are innately false and deceptive, while a man shaving his face is not, it is saying that people wearing weaves are false and deceptive. Less than those who typically shave their faces and go to tanning salons, both of which are viewed as natural phenomena.

Weaves are real hair by choice. They are immigrants to the scalp and have naturalized there, becoming as local as the local-born citizenry – like the ‘stranger in the midst’ described in the Bible, that is accepted into the tribe. So much as the hairstyle is part of its wearer, weaves and eyelash weaves are part of their wearers as well. They are as real as the wind and the rain. As real as a suntan on a white male is real, despite its ephemerality.

Update 7-27-2014

Silk’n Laser Hair Remover update. So far I’ve been using this thing for a month every week (not every 2 weeks like the packet says). I know I’m probably wasting it, but when my leg hair grows back, it grows back in patches and not all over. So far there’s been around a 50% reduction in hair that actually potentially grows everywhere – on my legs, armpit and arms. If I keep using it for another month the hair will probably disappear forever so I’m going to have to buy fewer razors in the dollar store.

This is a good thing. Hopefully, I’ll be able to resell it for over $100 since I kept the original packaging.

I found a foundation makeup online. It’s called Secret Key Telling U CC Cream. ($2.50 online on sale, $6.83 MSRP). It has ‘smart shade’ technology which enables it to adjust to a variety of shades, although as with many products many people are screwed over. I tried it on my guy friend whose skin tone is that of dark chocolate, and it adjusted to a milk chocolate shade. My skin tone is like medium beige so it adjusted to my shade.

This isn’t exactly racist but it’s because it’s from Korea and there’s more homogeneity than here. Like most immigrants there are from the Philippines, China and Europe as opposed to South Asia and Africa. But once this changes, then there’ll be more options.

This vegan, alcohol free foundation is filled with various ingredients such as Alpaflor Gigawhite, a spot remover, Arbutin, a skin tone evener, and anti-aging ingredients such as adenosine. Gigawhite will not bleach your skin, it gets rid of like spots you get from picking your zit, as well as uneven tanning. The main problem I had with this was that the adenosine made my facial hair grow in faster so I had to shave it and laser it frequently. There’s also purslane, lady’s mantle and other herbs inside. The main issue is that it smells like bathroom soap. Not nice bathroom soap that you find in the Ernst and Young building, but bathroom soap in schools and crappy office buildings.

Unlike other foundations I’ve tried, such as Wet and Wild, this has a sheer coverage but it still hides zits. A small amount also stretches to spread across your face so even though the bottle is tiny as hell, it’s not like you’re going to run out in a week. This is a foundation you do contouring with over rather than under.

Reviews 7-10-2014

Nicka K Extreme Volume Mascara – This is a fiber adding mascara. But it doesn’t have the waterproof qualities of other fiber-adders, nor does it really give volume. It creates length, though, and that’s cool for many people. It’s like weak tea – you can taste the tea but not all of it. I was taking a break from playing music at a fair, so I went into a BSS to seek Kiss fiber adding mascara but they didn’t have any so I got this one.

I also grabbed a Waterproof Gel eyeliner by Absolute in Pearl, which is pretty good. Actually it’s a thick pencil so you can smudge it over your entire eyelid area or use it to contour.

Reviews 7/5/2014

Silk’n Flash and Go Permanent Hair Removal – $159-199 depending on purchase location 

This item is the most expensive thing I’m going to review, probably all year. I picked it up at a Bed Bath and Beyond. So far I went through one treatment and the cartridge still has juice on it. But when you look at the cost of getting it done at a place, this costs less. I was a bit fed up with the hair inhibitor lotion I had, since it worked minimally. Besides, I was looking for a permanent solution.

I’m going to say this. Laser hair removal systems are racist. They don’t generally work on people darker than Beyonce, or most blondes and redheads, and for anyone like my complexion which is kind of tan, you have to hold it under a bright light or else it won’t work. Now most people can get laser at a parlor, but they still have to optimize the home kit for darker skinned people.

So far I did it once and it seemed like nothing happened, but that’s normal. I’m going to do my whole body again in 2 weeks. If the cartridge runs out, a new one is 20 bucks. You have to do it for like 4 months before it starts becoming permanent. Hopefully that means less than 4 cartridges, and hopefully I’ll get a decent price when I sell it after all this is over.

Trader Joe’s Nourish Serum – $10 

So I was walking around in the city, having picked up a few packs of guitar strings that were on sale. And I’m hanging out with my friend Matt before D&D night, and we decide to look for free samples in Trader Joes. I went in and had some samples of veggie burgers that were surprisingly really good, and picked up some alleged Norwegian cheese ($2.50), facial lotion with SPF ($3.99) and this serum.

Now the main steps of your skincare routine are supposed to be cleansing, toning, serum and moisturizing. But instead, I was using Carotis and the occasional dollar store sheet mask as my serum. Carotis is good but it doesn’t have as many good ingredients as this one. So I grabbed this. When I put it on, it felt like it had filled in all the zit holes on my face. This is because it has silicone, a modern ingredient not otherwise found in skin care stuff I buy. Hopefully, the copper peptides, Vitamin C beads and other goodies help to benefit my skin over time.


How to wash your face without splashing water

This is apparently something that normal people know how to do, and I just figured out the ‘knack’.

First, bend over at the waist so that your face, covered in cleanser or clay mask, is close to the sink. This requires your feet to be kind of far from the sink. Then cup the water in your hands and make sure your elbows are above the level of your hands. This is kind of an awkward position. Bending over some more, so that your face is almost in the sink, wash your face with the water.

Some troubleshooting, if you still aren’t getting it, make sure to move your feet back more, then bend at the waist, then hunch over. The primary motion should be at the waist. I know that your shoulders will be uncomfortable at first but it takes a while to get ‘the knack’. It is a challenge like riding a bike, which is still something I cannot do properly. But do not feel bad if you cannot get it. I have a feeling that most people cannot, but unfortunately people who are clumsy are heavily penalized by ‘normals’.

BTW as a liberal and anti-authoritarian, I am glad that although fireworks are technically banned in my area, people have broken into the housing project next door to do fireworks off the roof.