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Lily Allen and David Harbour's bathroom refrigerator
I'm just still thinking about it.
I’m still trying to come to terms with just how cold it is outside after weeks of suspiciously warm, spring-like weather. But I hope you’re all staying cozy out there and your temperatures aren’t plunging anywhere near 2 degrees Fahrenheit today like they are here in NYC.
For some reason, I’ve been thinking a lot lately about little ways of being nicer to myself. Specifically, I was recently reminded of that saying about nighttime you being kinder to morning you by setting things up so your day goes more smoothly instead of just drinking too much wine. I think there’s something really sweet about that idea and I’ve been trying to implement it a bit more by doing small stuff like prepping the coffee maker the night before so all I have to do is flip the switch, mopping the floors before I go to sleep to wake up to a slightly more pristine space, and setting out some sweatpants and warm socks by my bed so when Fran rouses me with her whimpers at dawn I won’t have to stumble through the dark to find stuff to take her outside. I’ve also just been trying to get in the habit of routinely buying myself flowers because it’s something low cost that makes me really happy. Do any of you guys do stuff like this? I’d love to hear some more examples to continue to inspire this self-love fest, especially as we head into the perils of Valentine’s Day and all of the self-pity that entails.
And speaking of the dog, Savage x Fenty sent me a PR box for the Super Bowl which included a teeny tiny lavender football that has immediately turned Fran into the ultimate jock:
Whose child is this.
Anyway, that’s enough about me for now. If you guys want to chat outside of this venue, please join the Mess Discord where almost 500 of you gorgeous Messketeers are already gathered. And if for some reason you require even more of this slop in your every day life, please sign up to become a paid subscriber just in time to receive the Best of Mess 2021 grand finale.
And finally, I just wanted to say a big old THANK YOU to everyone for reading this waking nightmare as we’re swiftly cruising towards 6K subscribers which is absolutely insane. I don’t know how you found out about this, I don’t know why you’re still here, but please keep spreading the good word to everyone you know and I hope you’ll continue to enjoy my weekly rantings and ravings.
Ok. Let’s see ‘em.
First of all, I just want to say Mr. BDE Worldwide looks great. Pitbull Pete is absolutely glowing, could it be the fact that he’s finally found a real relationship after a year plus of PR showmances?
This week I was also reminded of the true chaotic pop culture force that is Jeffree Star after the YouTube makeup mogul soft launched his new “NFL boyfriend” on Instagram (left), prompting a whole bunch of straight men—who are apparently unaware that Jeffree is the King of Trolls—to lose their minds trying to figure out who this could be. I do have to give Jeffree props for finding a man who looks exactly like Tom Brady from behind the same week Tom announced his retirement from football and got photographed raging at someone on the phone. This whole debacle also reminded me of the last time Jeffree soft launched a boyfriend on Instagram (right) and you have to admit, for as despicable as he can be, the man has a true gift for drama, shit-stirring, and imagery that will be burned in your brain for the rest of your life.
If this wasn’t proof enough of that capacity, he also returned to TikTok to drag beloved makeup influencer Mikayla for wearing false eyelashes while doing a paid mascara ad as though, as Jessica DeFino put it in this week The Unpublishable newsletter, “there’s a way to authentically fake longer, thicker lashes.” Also, to my mind, this isn’t so much an issue of false representation as it is a question of how strict our advertising laws should be (I’m thinking specifically about the UK banning those Natalie Portman Dior ads over a similar issue). It’s also been an interesting litmus test of just how far we as consumer still need to go to become savvy to this type of stuff and stop being so incredibly gullible.
And you know, I really try to take the TikTok blind items and celeb conspiracy theorists with a grain of salt and not let all their fan fic taint my perspective, but: Does anyone else find this post from Megan Fox to be pretty troubling? The idea that anyone would deserve an injured limb aside, I tried to give her the benefit of the doubt that this was some emo song lyric I just wasn’t familiar with. But when I googled it the only thing that came up is "Sixteen Reasons (Why I Love You)" by Connie Stevens which just loops me right back around to the theories about the not-quite-right nature of her relationship…
Anyway, on a very different, radically lighter note, is this what casts look like these days?! Because I think it’s just a wrist brace, but the Daily Mail called it a cast and I haven’t broken something since 1994 when they were still using good old strips of plaster and cotton batting so this makes me feel like we are suddenly living in some radical Jetsons future.
Since we’ve already started off this newsletter by swapping some highly unfounded information, I have a fresh conspiracy I’ve cooked up for you all. As you know, Katy Perry is at her happiest when ensconced in the guise of an inanimate object. And now I believe that she is attempting to subtly infiltrate that fetish into her every day red carpet apparel as well, spotted here doing some Hershey’s Kiss cosplay.
Jasmine Sanders aka Golden Barbie also chose to attend a red carpet in full costume this week, doing her best Pamela Anderson impression at the premier of the Playboy icon’s Netflix documentary. An event which was not a costume party. I already think it’s a little odd to dress up as Pam at an event where she is tackling her very serious, and often very dark, life story, but if you have to do this, at least do it well. While you know I hate to ever give Kendall Jenner any props, at least when she did Barb Wire dress-up for that massive Halloween party she threw in the middle of a global pandemic, at least it was dead accurate, not just an old bodysuit from the closet paired with boots from a Real Housewive’s ShoeDazzle collection and a pair of shredded control top pantyhose. If we must imitate the person who is the star of the documentary, let’s at least try and be more respectful about how we portray them.
And many of you probably already heard me shout this from the rooftop that is Twitter, but we must stop trying to turn everyone into a model. Also, this is kind of a side note, but if you are a designer relying on stunt casting like this or that fake FROW purse snatch at Mugler to make people care and talk about your clothing……try just making better clothing! You’re putting your energy in the wrong place. Anyway, Nicola Peltz posed for the new GCDS campaign and I just cannot fathom why any of this transpired. As I’ve said a million times before, being pretty does not make you a model. It is a profession for a reason and one that, truthfully, not many people are any good at, as clearly demonstrated here. I also still don’t understand why if these brands insist on doing this they can’t also hire a real model just to show the celeb how they should be posing and holding their body so we can avoid more Macy’s mannequin displays such as this.
And that wasn’t the only campaign she rolled out this week. Brooklyn Beckham and Nicola also posed very strangely for some new Tiffany & Co. ad. Is this just a case of nepo babies being foisted upon us regardless of the actual demand? Because I can’t imagine these two have any real fan base so rabid for fresh content featuring them that this deal is actually moving the needle for those brands. And if you thought Nicola’s posing was limited, it’s got nothing on her husband’s modeling skill set which oscillates between these exact two looks, either clutching his wife’s waist while desperately trying to make eye contact with her or looking profoundly depressed while ruffling his hair. You can also see both of these tricks at play in that sensationally boring styling video they did for Vogue.
And honestly…I’m starting to love that Brooklyn is just forcing his unskilled cooking career down our throats despite his entire comment section begging him to stop. I also think he might have finally found his perfect niche with this fettuccine dish completely obscured by huge chunks of truffle, and that is: recipes for rich people only! Stop fighting the outrage machine and start feeding it! Give the people something to really get worked up over instead of just mocking him for using chicken stock from a box. Use $10,000 white wine to make your risotto, cover your tater tots in gold leaf, feed your dog one of those $50 Oishii strawberries. I think I finally found a way to make this guy interesting.
This week, people also got quite upset over Kylie Jenner’s decision to use the Astroworld iconography of these giant inflatable heads for Stormi and Aire’s birthday parties and while it’s not surprising, it does strike me as an extremely odd logical disconnect. Considering how studiously that family stayed quiet on the topic and tried to distance themselves from the fact that Travis Scott is responsible for killing ten of his fans, I don’t get why she’s so openly flaunting this reminder just a little over a year later except to flex the fact that she can. I also just think these huge head sculptures are going to be guaranteed trauma for her children to unpack in therapy later on.
But this also got me curious….we’ve been talking in the Discord lately about where Travis is in all of this and why Kylie seems to be working overtime the last few weeks since their “official” split to draw the headlines and attention all towards her. My personal theory is that Travis finally got his longtime actual girlfriend, Yung Sweet Ro, pregnant and the KarJenners can’t figure out a way to spin that timeline in a way that makes Kylie not look like the side piece so she’s just trying to bury it by keeping all eyes firmly on her. In that vein, perhaps she also realized that while keeping herself at the center of the media spin she can also subtly remind people of just what Travis did, especially as the lawsuits against him ramp up, as a way to explain away some of the distance between them. Although, she’s going to have to be a little less celebratory about it if she wants to come out the other side of this fully unscathed from whatever bad news is about to drop.
I also can’t believe it’s taken me a full calendar year to realize that Kylie scheduled it so that her children would be born one day after the next. I don’t think there will ever be a day when I stop being surprised by the subtle weirdo behavior that takes place in that family. And now that I know that, I also feel a rumbling deep in my soul that tells me Kylie will know no peace until she has a child for every day of that week and a guaranteed annual block of tabloid domination.
In other subtle weirdo behavior, this week I was also reminded of just how deep this family’s obsession with iconic dead white women goes after spotting this Princess Diana pap shot in Kylie’s house which brought to mind Khloé’s mansion full of Marilyn pics. On the one hand, I get it, they’re extremely basic white women. This is what they do. It’s very midwestern sorority pledge hanging that Ikea Audrey Hepburn canvas in her dorm room. But at the same time, there’s something that feels off about this decor decision in the same way Kim’s collection of memorabilia makes everyone feel a little uneasy. Maybe their taste in art, much like their careers, makes us uncomfortable because it lays bare their fascination with fame for fame’s sake and the way they emulate iconic-ness without actually possessing the It-factor or actual foundations for that level of eternal notoriety. And by demonstrating that this “fake it until you make it” mentality actually works to attain global stardom, in a way, they are also dismantling a lot of our nostalgia around this sort of idol worship. I’ve always thought the best thing about the Kardashians is that they are the best situated women in history to shatter the public’s illusion regarding celebrity and hopefully finally set us free from it.
Because really when the paparazzi shots are merging into the Instagram content and becoming indistinguishable from one another, where is traditional fame, as we’ve previously known it, supposed to go from here? Kylie has clearly taken her older sister Kim’s advice and hired her own team of paparazzi to document her “private” bikini moments and then sell the perfectly framed and retouched images back to the press for a cut of the profits. While its genius from a business perspective and makes perfect sense celebs should be getting a check off their own exploitation, it also completely eliminates what people actually enjoy about these types of candid tabloid shots. There’s no flaws, no clandestine feeling, none of the seediness that makes this genre of photography so specifically enjoyable. It’s like you can feel the family’s hand at work here trying to create their own “Princes Diana moment,” expertly constructing their own appearances on future Pinterest mood boards and Instagram fashion nostalgia accounts that will invariably pop up 20 years from now. Again, it’s the curtain lifting on the machinations of fame, which while interesting from a sociological standpoint seems guaranteed to undermine the very people it’s currently propping up.
And as always, I just think these evil masterminds are all at their best when at their campiest, even if they don’t recognize what they’re doing as camp whatsoever. So yes, this is just more of the same old Balenciaga vintage copycat looks, but there is a certain simple beauty to the choice of putting Kim Kardashian in an Assitalia jersey. Honestly, this is what should’ve been in that tragic #CiaoKim collection she “designed” for Dolce & Gabbana.
And am I losing my mind or do these three women all have the exact same face in this selfie? Is there a copy and paste feature on FaceTune?
With a new single to promote, Rita Ora has been delivering an absolute whirlwind of fashion this week, wearing nine different outfits in a single day much to the Daily Mail’s horror and delight. She started off the week in this Ariel special and I actually think she’s onto something here with the big, gaudy belt buckle. It feels both aughts-inspired and like one of the few accessory frontiers that has yet to be exploited to the max. Cue Kim Kardashian using a solid gold bar to fasten her pants in 3...2…
Speaking of pants, Rita has also proven to have an incredible dedication to making lace pants happen in the year 2023. For those who don’t recall, she wore this Dolce & Gabbana set on the right last month, and then once again gave see-through trousers a try while out and about in New York this week. I’m not sure how I feel about the boot giving her a peg leg crop at the knee, although I do like that she’s trying to do something a little different with the layering. That said, this random scrap of lace trim she’s tied around her midriff has got to go.
And I think this might be the closest I’ve ever come to being genuinely triggered by an outfit. It’s something about the way the skirt is tucked into these hip-height boots so that it makes it look like she’s wearing drop-crotch multimedia trousers that sends me into a genuine rage. I cannot and will not be discussing this any further.
But just when I think we’ve done all the naked dressing we can do, leave it to Rita to find a fresh way to serve up full nudity. I think the transparent latex is a much more high fashion update on the usual Fashion Nova mesh or, heaven forbid, vinyl. And while I know I’ve been on the forefront of pasties advocacy, I think they actually really cheapen the overall look of this dress when it could’ve been very dramatic and Rick Owens if she’d just gone tits out and popped on a platform boot.
I also noticed that even Sam Smith wore pasties in their latest music video which makes me think the look has officially hit the mainstream now. So naturally, the girls are already off in search of the next areola-adjacent scandal, confirming why we’ve been seeing so many nipple-forward fashions the past few weeks.
And Beyoncé is leading the way in that endeavor, wearing this sculptural boob armor to announce her world tour. Longtime readers will recall that I’ve been railing against the inanity that is sheer illusion paneling for a decade and have never understood why there is not better technology out there to suspend the girls in mid-air, and I finally feel like those cries are being answered. It’s not even like this is some radical new innovation, it’s just taking the boning of corsetry and giving it a cyborg cowboy with a bedazzling gun treatment. Although, considering how much money Bey has, this really should have been made entirely out of real diamonds.
But even though it’s not made out of actual gemstones, I was thinking about how the real rich person flex here is that this look will also be unbelievably hard for fast fashion retailers to imitate. Although, obviously, they’re still going to make some very concerning bodysuits trying to. But as celebs continue to look for more and more ways to differentiate themselves from the masses, and have totally blown out the vintage designer market in that pursuit, I feel like exclusively wearing 1 of 1 clothing that contains complicated feats of design ingenuity is one really powerful way of doing that.
As I said on Jan. 1st, 2023 is the year of the whale tail. And to that I must add that Latto is now the captain of our whale watching vessel. Not only is the rapper going to give you thong over waistline every damn time, but she’s also already on that Bella Thorne G-string adornment tip. Like a gorgeous nameplate necklace for your butt. I also wanted to bring up Latto’s thong because this week someone tried to call her out for wearing the same pair of underwear twice…….this is how you know we’re truly living in deranged late stage capitalism. Not only do we think it’s normal to never see a famous person where the same article of clothing twice, but now we think it’s gross if they wear the same pair of underwear twice?! As a society, we must get a grip expeditiously. But anyway, it all worked out because Latto just called them the “panty police” and then put the thong on eBay where it was going for almost $100K before the spoilsport website removed the listing for violating "health and hygiene standards."
I’d also just like to highlight the fact that after previous sightings on Billy Porter and Doja Cat, the Crone Shoulder™ has finally returned to the red carpet thanks to Allison Brie and I am still just as enamored with it and its villainous vibes as ever before. Plus, considering the way women’s rights are under attack these days, getting all of us to start dressing more and more like witches who will put a hex on any lawmaker who step out of line seems like a really great idea.
And before I get out of here, I’d just like to point out that Lizzo plays a superhero in her latest music video and, once again, I can’t help but feel like my trend prediction for the rise of celeb as demi-god couldn’t have been more on the money. Also interesting when you consider how celebrities and influencers have now become this sort of stop gap for the extreme failures of American government, stepping in as billionaire saviors to pay hospital bills, funeral services, and college tuitions, and even to occasionally right the wrongs of the criminal justice system…
I hope all of your weekends are as peaceful as Kate Moss’s mornings spent meditating in this field of poppies (yes, this is really a picture of her meditation field, and yes, I do suddenly understand the whole point of being a rich person). Ok, see you soon!
Don’t worry. You’re safe. It’s all over now. You’re going to be ok.
You’ve survived another harrowing decent into the depths of the Mariana Trench of Mess. And if you haven’t gotten the bends by now, that means you’ve still got enough oxygen in your tank to tell at least five strangers about the awe-inspiring things you witness here every week and get them signed up for a subscription today. Remember that should they refuse your inbox advances, you can also spring this missive upon them by gifting your cohorts a paid subscription and then filling their wardrobe with sumptuous Mess Merch. Should you encounter a garment so deliriously gruesome that you don’t know what else to do with it between now and next Friday, please hop in the ~ MESS DISCORD ~ where I and 500 of your fellow Messketeers are waiting ready to dissect such horrors.
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Looking forward to warmer days ahead!