oh my god why did i do this to myself again

Fuuuuuuuck, you guys. Oh my god. Has Cosmo gotten EVEN WORSE?!? Or did I just forget how painful it was to subject oneself to?

Anyway. God. I bought another Cosmo.


See, so, there’s this writer/comedian lady who I somehow follow on tumblr or something – I can’t remember whether I vaguely know her as a friend-of-a-friend, or if I started following her because I read something about her somewhere, or what? But she’s funny and I like her stuff, and blah blah, so one day she announced on her tumblr or whatever that she was writing an article about breakups which were affected in some way by social media, and she wanted people to interview. I wrote to offer myself and my blog up – it turns out I had never actually TOLD my blog that my boyfriend of about a decade and I had broken up. (Ahem. Surprise. Sorry, everybody. We both still love you very much; this was not your fault.) So there were a few of my friends who found out about that whole thing a very, very long time after it happened. (Um. I guess I could have also just TOLD my friends? But who does that?) So blah blah whatever, I tell this girl that, and she’s like, okay, cool, so can I interview you for this article for Cosmo magazine? To which I reply, “FUCKING AWESOME YES PLS DO THAT RIGHT NOW and also full disclosure here’s a link to ‘Jessica v Cosmo.’” To which she…never replied again.


So I did not get interviewed for that article. But it came out in this month’s Cosmo, and I figured I’d show my support by buying the issue, anyway!

And then versus-ing the shit out of it.


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Incidentally, those three words which you “must never say to a guy” are “I look fat.” Just to clear that up right away, so you don’t have to wonder. “Well, that sounds progressive, Jessica!” you say, because I know how vehemently you hope to defend Cosmo to me. “Alas,” says I, “it is not.” Because the reasons you’re not supposed to say those three words to a boy? Not so much because, you know, he loves you the way you are, and he wants you to be healthy and confident, and he wants you to be happy in your own body, and he’s a feminist concerned about the impact of the patriarchal male gaze and media’s representations of women on the people he loves. It’s because:

  • When you say ‘I look fat,’ we feel helpless.
  • It’s a guaranteed killer of good times.
  • You’re planting seeds of doubt in our minds.
  • You’re making us feel insecure too.

Or, in other words:

  • It makes the boy feel bad.
  • It makes the boy feel bad.
  • You might actually be fat, yes.
  • It makes the boy feel bad.

Fuck you, Cosmo. Fuck you so, so fucking much.

On the other hand, there ARE those two “awesome bonus covers” of Miley Cyrus, so. That DOES kind of make up for it, right??

From the Miley Cyrus interview: “If you want to know who’s gonna buy your record for the rest of your life, get Brazilians and gays on your side.” [Um...because they'll tell you?] “Cosmo: Really? … Why Brazilians? Miley: I don’t know! My dad told me that when I was little.”


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And now that we have that out of the way, let’s crash an Ivy League campus with Cosmo. Let’s…crash one…where I work. Ahem.

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The first thing that strikes me? They managed to find a LOT of white people for these photos. Seriously. It kind of seems like they must have had to TRY to do that. These are not the first random groups of people you just happen to run into on campus to take photos of. They had to LOOK to get this many white people.

RE “Campus Errands,” though: the ID Center really IS a pain; that’s true! Also, hey, look, they found two black people and a lesbian! Phew, good enough, now back to the white people at Starbucks, eh, Cosmo?

And just fyi, those are not the steps of the “main library.” They ARE the steps in front of a building that is called “The Blahblah Library,” (sorry…google-search-fear…), but it’s all administrative offices and fancy meeting rooms and stuff. The main library is directly across the way from those steps.

Also? “Potential Instagram hashtags?” Cosmo does not know how to use social media. Just saying.

“Sexy vs Skanky” continues to be one of my least-favorite sections in the magazine.

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In this particular issue, the dividing line between “sexy” and “skanky” appears to be whether or not the offending party is fat. (Though – is it progressive of them to include a photo of the transgender model Lea T without, like, I don’t know, making a big deal of it? I mean, yes, fine, they do list her as “skanky,” but…still?) (Also, that Trey Parker and Matt Stone thing was from literally thirteen years ago. There are people reading Cosmo magazine today who were not alive when that happened. One of the people nominated for a major Oscar this year was negative four years old when that happened. The entire publication run of Cosmo Girl did not last for thirteen years. Cosmo’s cover girl, Miley Cyrus, was in the second grade when that photo was taken. Way to stay relevant, Cosmo. Nice journalism there.)


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(Also, fuck those fucking eyeball stickers.)

First of all, I DO NOT BELIEVE YOU, COSMO. None of these women actually said these things. These are not things that human people just say.

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The “Beauty Q&A” section promises: “Your burning beauty issues, solved – in 20 words or less!” First of all, Cosmo, YOU MEANT “FEWER,” and your punctuation is all hosed up there, too. But also: I bet I can beat that limit. I bet I can do it in TEN words or fewer!

Q: When I apply powder foundation over my moisturizer, it gets cakey. Any tips?
A: Don’t like the way makeup looks? Don’t wear makeup.

Q: How can I get glowing skin for my wedding in two months?
A: Wash your face, be in love, hire a good photographer.

Q: What type of brush is best for a DIY blowout?
A: I don’t know, a hairbrush? What?

Q: How can I get away with taking long, hot showers in winter without stripping my skin?
A: Put on lotion. Or don’t. Whatever.

Q: Can I pull off orange lipstick at work?
A: Fuck you, okay? Just. Just fuck you. Fuck you.

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This ad is about being skinny, right?

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Aaaand here it is, the article for which I was not interviewed!

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It’s okay! I refuse to credit Cosmo for this; only this random internet girl who I can’t actually remember whether or not I know. And she didn’t call me fat or tell me to touch anyone’s prostate or taint, like Cosmo articles usually do. So that was nice. Good job, Internet Girl!

But speaking of how Cosmo thinks I’m fat? MAN, Cosmo sure does think I’m fat! Cosmo thinks I am fat and repulsive and my body needs to be reigned in and put under control via any means possible, at all times. And Cosmo REALLY needs for me to be totally conscious of my own utter and absolute physical unacceptability, at all times.

Am I making or consuming a beverage? Cosmo wants me to be aware of the calories in it, and to know that however many there are, there should be fewer of them.

“Because ice balls reduce the volume of liquid in your glass, you’ll slash some calories, too.”

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Am I exercising? Cosmo wants me to know that my body is on display for other people’s consumption, and I have a responsibility to make it as pleasant for them to experience as possible.

“Pair them with ankle socks to show off your legs.”

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Is there a sporting event happening in the world? Cosmo wants me to know that I exist only to attract and bring pleasure to a man (and also I am still fat).

“It’s not just basketball. We’re talking brackets, beer…and boys, obviously! Be this year’s Cinderella and host a slam-dunk sporting event!” “To avoid getting too bloated, alternate every beer with a glass of water, and mix in some physical activity – like volunteering for the next beer run.” “Hoping to score some points with the hottie at the office? Fill out a bracket!”

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Oh Cosmo.

The best part of this month’s Cosmo? Or…any month’s Cosmo, ever? The only good thing that has ever appeared in Cosmo, in the history of ever? The Sex Q&A section contained this question-and-answer:

Q: I found a jar of “organic” sex lube in the fridge at a juice bar. It’s pure coconut oil. Is it safe to use?
A: Oil-based lubes, like coconut oil, are long-lasting and easy to find (and the tropical scent can put you into a relaxed, vacation mood!). But they can’t be used with latex condoms or diaphragms because the oil breaks down latex, making them ineffective. And while oil-based lubes are great for manual stimulation, don’t use them internally – they can cause infection.

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I guess…I mean….

Okay, maybe the best way to express my bafflement-with/delight-in this whole…thing…is to just re-write that the way it would have gone if they had asked ME to answer the question:

Q: I found a jar of “organic” sex lube in the fridge at a juice bar. It’s pure coconut oil. Is it safe to use?
A: No. BECAUSE YOU FUCKING “FOUND” SEX LUBE IN THE FUCKING FRIDGE AT A FUCKING JUICE BAR. ARE YOU FUCKING SERIOUS. It is not safe to use sex lube that you “find,” ever, anywhere. COME ON. But also, it is not safe to use sex lube that you find in the fridge at a juice bar. Who are you? What are you doing with your life? (Where is this juice bar?!) Are you fucking serious? Am I being pranked? Are you Ashton Kutcher? Other things which are not safe to use as sex lube: organic carrot juice (found in the fridge at the juice bar), Clorox disinfectant spray (found in the cleaning supply closet at the juice bar), the last half of a Mango Madness smoothie (with “Energizer” wheat grass shot added) (found sitting on the table after the customer left at the juice bar), a soy double-espresso chai latte (found at the coffee bar). In case you were wondering about those. You absolute madman. SERIOUSLY. JESUS. COME ON.

And the worst part of this month’s Cosmo? In an article about IUDs:

“Up to 10 percent of women expel the device in the first year (awkward!).”


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  1. Shena’s avatar

    Yes, “awkwardness” is my main concern when it comes to preferred methods of birth control, especially when that birth control is in danger of failure/creepy expulsion from my body!! If only you had versus’d Cosmo sooner.