Is It Okay to Online Shop During a Pandemic?

Related | What to Do If You Can’t Afford Rent This WeekEssentially, you’re not going to get corona from picking up a box. All over my social media feeds, people are getting all glammed up, just for fun (I would also dress up for a Zoom party, but I have not been invited to a single one). When it comes to receiving mail, scientists have found that the CoV-2 virus can survive for up to 24 hours on cardboard, so it’s a good policy to Lysol your packages before bringing them inside. You’d be doing your best to keep a business and a culture alive, for just a little while longer. So if you have the money, and you want something from a local shop or designer, don’t feel weird about ordering it. Are conditions safe for workers? Support the brands you love and believe in.”Related | Managing an Eating Disorder Under Quarantine Is Weird and HardBrandon Veloria, co-owner of New York’s best vintage boutique, James Veloria, has kept online orders going, aided by an active and joyful social media presence. There are a number of considerations when it comes to online shopping in this, our brave new world. Selman makes the most comfortable sweatpants this reporter has ever owned, as well as incredibly ass-flattering leggings that work both for attempting at-home workout videos and taking photos to send to one’s coronavirus boyfriend. But that’s not everywhere. But there’s no need for hysteria. It made me feel just a tad more normal, even if I only wore it to watch The Talented Mr. Is it safe to receive packages? I put on a vintage Vivienne Westwood tartan with a cropped black Margiela sweater and high heels, the exact outfit I’d worn on a date right before the world stopped. Currently, ordering online is another form of voting. slow the spread of the virus, shopping outside is essentially a non-starter. And he thinks that this is a watershed moment for the industry.”Shoppers are in a unique position to shape the future of what surrounds them and survives this chapter,” he wrote. Cardboard is a porous surface, which experts say is good for avoiding viral transmissions (fabric is also porous — but there aren’t hard numbers yet on how long the virus can live on fabric, so it’s a good idea to wash clothes once you receive them). Everlane, which markets itself as a bastion of ethical fashion and makes basics for basics, was recently admonished by Senator Bernie Sanders for union-busting in a crisis. Since the second week of March, when the virus began a full-force global spread, I’ve received countless emails from fashion companies assuring customers that they’ve sent their employees home to practice social distancing, and special sanitary precautions are being taken in package fulfillment facilities. People that contribute so much to our culture — designers, artists, chefs, musicians, everyone interesting — are getting decimated by this, the plague. “Shopping now is as much a moral as a consumer question,” she added. “Honestly though, even if people don’t buy anything, all of the messages of support have been so encouraging and make me feel less alone or trapped in all of this. Amazon and Instacart workers are striking; employees have been exposed to COVID-19 in warehouses, and say that their employers aren’t protecting them with proper sanitation, let alone paid sick leave. And hopefully my silly stories are helping people feel the same way.”Watching Veloria’s stories adds a dash of glamour to my otherwise dull, dull days. On Instagram, accounts like Work From Home Fits encourage people to have fun with fashion, even if no one will see it IRL. But what about shopping online? New York City’s SoHo, normally a bustling neighborhood that essentially functions as an outdoor shopping mall, is empty. So if you can help, spend your money wisely.”Buying and shopping online are the only lifelines for a lot of small businesses right now,” designer Adam Selman, who runs the athleticwear brand Adam Selman Sport (aka A.S.S.) tells PAPER in an Instagram direct message. (The store’s charming Instagram stories, in which Veloria models archival looks from the likes of Jean Paul Gaultier and Vivienne Westwood, are not to be missed.)”Doing stories and online sales have definitely been keeping me sane,” he wrote in a DM. “Where you spend your money matters. Before you buy, think: What is this about? Since we’re all supposed to stay home (please, unless you have to go to work, for the love of God, please stay home) and “flatten the curve,” i.e. If you can afford it, buy your clothes from small businesses you’d like to see live out the virus. Ripley and drunkenly bake banana bread.Getting dressed up — or at least putting on outside clothes — seems to have a positive effect on the bruised psyches of quarantined fashion lovers. “That’s like in some kind of hermetically sealed box where there’s no fluctuation in humidity, there’s no wind, there’s nothing that can contribute toward desiccating the virus. I sit in my pajamas and watch him in polished ’90s Commes de Garçons and Raf Simons button downs and think about how badly I want to get dressed up for something, anything. It could be about helping save a generation of small designers and independent businesses.” That line of thinking seems like the best and perhaps only ethical way to shop online. “It’s been a really nice way of still maintaining a community and relationships with people that I’d normally see in person.””I think in general it’s important for us because we’re able to continue maintaining jobs for our staff who are like family to us, and I think to a lot of our customers,” he added. And then last night, I decided I just should get dressed for no reason, just to feel better. And so desiccation — or drying out the virus — would actually reduce the amount of time it’s actually viable on any kind of surface.”But what about conditions for workers? Even fashion businesses that seem far cuddlier than Bezos’s behemoth aren’t above treating their workers poorly. So when it comes to online shopping in a pandemic, it’s important to be even more mindful than usual about who you support. “The thing that you have to consider, though, is that those tests are done in ideal testing circumstances,” Rachel Graham, a virologist at the University of North Carolina, told NPR. Considering rapidly rising unemployment rates, is it wise to spend money on clothing in the first place? In a column for the New York Times, fashion critic Vanessa Friedman wrote that shopping during a pandemic feels selfish, fluffy, “just the other side of wrong,” or, as one of her readers put it, “shameful.” People are dying, out of work and desperate — with very little hope of help from the US government. “It leaves a big opening — a lot of Goliaths in the industry could fall and more savvy brands could define the next chapter we live in. When we can’t go outside, is there even a point to buying anything besides the comfiest of sweatpants? But as Friedman wrote, shopping “is also an essential part of our economy; retail an enormous source of employment and creative expression.” In some ways, she noted, “the state of shopping is a sign of the times.” Those 25 percent off deals shouldn’t solicit joy: they’re a retailer’s cry for help. The windows of stores usually buzzing with tourists and Instagrammers posing for fit checks are marked with signs announcing closures due to the global spread of the novel coronavirus — luxury retailers like Coach, Fendi and Dolce & Gabbana have been boarded up entirely, as though preparing for looters.

MAC Cosmetics Will Donate $10 Million to COVID-19 Relief

Viva Glam ambassador Miley Cyrus announced this particular donation milestone for the company this week, giving her followers the scoop on Thursday’s episode of her Instagram show Bright Minded.Related | Free to Be MileyAccording to MAC, over 250 “local organizations” will end up being the recipients of the sum $10 million donation raised through the sales of its lipsticks. More information on the VIva Glam Fund and specifics about their work leading up to fighting COVID-19 can be found here.Photo via Instagram Over the years, countless celebrities have become spokespeople for MAC’s iconic Viva Glam lipstick campaigns, from RuPaul to Nicki Minaj. MAC Cosmetics’ Viva Glam line has been involved in the fundraising of hundreds of millions of dollars to fight the HIV and AIDS epidemic since 1994, but the organization is taking an urgent aim at a different cause in 2020: fighting COVID-19.While MAC will continue raising money to fight HIV and AIDS, Chairman of the MAC Viva Glam Fund, John Demsey, notes that “VIVA GLAM has never been about one cause, but about support to vulnerable communities.” Utilizing the 100% giving model, the company plans to continue fighting for vulnerable communities by contributing to the immediate needs of those affected by the coronavirus — from healthcare workers in need of supplies to critically food insecure Los Angeleans. M·A·C Cosmetics’s Instagram photo: “Since 1994, M·A·C VIVA GLAM has raised more than $500,000,000 USD, partnering with local organizations to ensure that help reaches those…”
As tradition goes, the $10 million was raised through the sales of MAC’s iconic Viva Glam lipsticks — which they still encourage supporters of their cause to purchase as contributions to their charitable work.

Please Don’t Give Yourself Quarantine Bangs

Do I follow in Shon’s footsteps and leave my hair alone until the world returns to whatever our new normal will be post-pandemic? Do I really need to shake the girls in my next Zoom chat badly enough to risk ruining my hair? I’m currently washing my hair maybe once a week and the only person I see is my roommate and the friends I FaceTime. “It looked like someone took a bunch of ketamine and some safety scissors and just went for it.”Bennett advises to always work with dry hair, using plenty of mirrors to see from every angle, and working with gravity rather than against it. “idk who need to hear this but… “You don’t want to be lifting anything up.” And if you’re lucky enough to be quarantined with a roommate or partner, have them help. I visit the grocery store, grabbing even more boxes of pasta and snack packs of chocolate pudding. Or do I follow Sean’s advice and give myself a snip and hope for the best? “You’re so worried about looking cool on the video that you’re not actually going to be taking into consideration the real world sensibility.” And of course, slow and steady wins the race. Right before I went into quarantine, I tweeted an altered selfie (pictured above), in which I’d given myself blonde hair and bangs, hours after posting the original, unedited version. Read the room, babe!Even those of us who already have bangs are smart enough not to attempt a home trim. In reality, they make my long face longer (my chin is a little pointy), despite their purpose mostly being to camouflage my forehead. And I’m not alone. He points to Angelina Jolie’s choppy, cropped bangs in 1995’s Hackers as something fun but achievable. Realistically, I’m not going to risk it. It could be your bangs or it could be your hair, chopping away at yourself.” Giving yourself bangs in a moment of crisis is the femme version of bleaching or buzzing off your hair — a time honored tradition of unhinged gay men, Bennett reminds me.Quarantine might not seem like the time to be radically altering your appearance, but Bennett argues it makes sense, considering we’re seeing ourselves now more than ever. Welcome to You’ve Been Served, Rose Dommu’s alternately irreverent and incisive look at beauty, ranging from the deeply personal to pop cultural — essays, product guides, interviews with artists/influencers/specialists and deep dives into the beauty industry’s impact on internet culture.Photo courtesy of Rose Dommu/ FaceApp Anything that you feel is sharp. Every few months, like clockwork, an itch starts under my skin to change something about my appearance. “Kitchen scissors are fine. Instead, I’ll embrace the fact that, now more than ever, we live in a digital world and keep editing haircuts and getting creative with my selfie angles. This usually manifests as a new color (last year alone I was a brunette, a blonde, a brunette, a blonde and finally a brunette with highlights), but I promised myself last fall that I would stop coloring my hair to keep it healthy. But there is something else I do almost daily — something far less healthy and more insidious: I fantasize about giving myself bangs.This is not a new phenomenon. “You can have maybe a false sense of confidence,” he continues. Giving myself bangs in quarantine is as pointless as filling up my online shopping cart with transitional spring jackets. It’s hardly the worst thing about this crisis!””We’re all having a Joan of Arc moment right now, where we’re ripping away at ourselves, and we’re eating our own hands, and we’re just trying to find some sensibility of who we are again.”The longer we’re stuck inside, the more likely some of us are to get stir crazy enough to start experimenting with our scissors. I move from chair to couch to bed, praying to find a space where I can work uninterrupted for more than half an hour. “My hand eye coordination is abysmal. DONT DO THAT TO YOURSELF,” advised another. I would fuck it up and look awful and be in a foul mood.” Before social distancing, Faye would regularly get her fringe trimmed every three-to-five weeks, and the prospect of not being able to maintain her current cut is “annoying, naturally, because the style suits me best and I went back to bangs after spending a year growing them out because they look better.” She adds, “But at least growing them out will be easier when I’m not seeing anyone. I go on walks to my local park where I scowl at couples walking hand in hand, flaunting to the world that they are the lucky ones still having sex while the rest of us are getting increasingly chafed and lonely. While I’m hoping that whatever latent crafty impulses slumber within me will be appeased by the home tiedye kit I forgot I owned, I reached out to my own hair stylist for his opinion on quarantine panic bangs. Maybe this is your time to really experiment with your look.”If you’re going to go through with your quarantine cut, whatever style it may be, Bennett advises finding a specific reference point for your desired look, and not being overly ambitious. My friend Shon Faye says she absolutely would not attempt to maintain her own fringe for however long we’re stuck inside. Jokes about giving yourself bangs during quarantine have dominated my Twitter feed for the past two weeks (which have felt like two years). I wash a seemingly endless supply of dirty dishes from the aforementioned cooking. “I don’t know how many people are looking at other people, but I’m always looking at myself.” Ok, same.Related | You Should All Be Practicing Masturbation MeditationNow, Bennett claims, “is the time to give yourself some funny ass haircut” because you’re the only one dealing with it. “We’re all having a Joan of Arc moment right now, where we’re ripping away at ourselves, and we’re eating our own hands, and we’re just trying to find some sensibility of who we are again,” he says. These are all fairly standard, productive and healthy habits. where you’re looking essentially at yourself,” he says, referring to the window in all video chat platforms where the user’s own face is visible. “She has a very fucked up bang,” Bennett says, lovingly. I want them. “If you can, have some harnessing power over yourself and do something. My hair is usually tied up with a scrunchie or hidden in the folds of whatever moldy hoodie I’ve found on my closet floor. “How im pullin up to my hair salon after I cut my own bangs and dyed my hair during quarantine,” someone wrote alongside Joe Exotic’s mugshot. I’d get sick of them in a few weeks, but be stuck growing them out for a year.Related | How Should Influencers Act During a Pandemic?But still… And who knows, maybe Zoom has a fringe filter in the works… Shockingly enough, he says go for it!Sean Bennett, the “hair bender” and wig wizard behind some of PAPER’s most outrageous shoots, thinks now is the perfect time to experiment. And I don’t just think about them, I mock them up. I cook, usually pasta but occasionally something a bit more ambitious (and nutritious). “This whole bang trim could take two hours. If I were to give myself a new haircut, who would enjoy it besides the supermarket cashier I’m pretty sure is judging me for all the aforementioned chocolate pudding I’m buying? A dull scissor is obviously going to give a duller, more broken look.”Also, don’t cut your bangs live on Instagram, where so many people have gone to pass the time. It’s not like you’re going anywhere.”And that leaves me right where I started — alone in my apartment with a pair of scissors and a rapidly deteriorating tether to reality. “We are having all these zoom chats… “You’re not having to go out in the world with it, and going into the club or going to the bar and people seeing it up close. Every few days, I load a new selfie into FaceApp and give myself a digital haircut, occasionally posting the results online. We are all united in two things: Our inability to stop masturbating and our knowledge that panic bangs are not a good idea.What is the point, after all? The bangs got more likes.I know, logically, that I don’t actually want bangs. Three weeks into isolation, I’ve developed certain quarantine habits. DONT GIVE YOURSELF QUARANTINE BANGS. So now, when that itch starts again, I find myself thinking about bangs. I’m also a sweaty girl, so they’d always be damp and stuck to my face.