Femme Resolutions For Age 25

I turn 25 tomorrow! Aaahh!

Birthdays, much like New Year’s Eve or the start of a new school year, always feel to me like a time of renewal and overhaul. I often make lists of goals and intentions for the coming year when one of these milestones rolls around, and this time is no different.

However, a lot of the intentions that came to mind for me around this birthday have been fashion- or beauty-related. It makes sense: I’m noticing lately, even more than usual, how massively my presentation can affect my mood and demeanor. So I’m setting myself the following style objectives for the year to come – all in the service of feeling good moreso even than looking good.

Fuck pants forever. Look. You wear pants if you want to. I’m sure they look great on you. But I just don’t think I can do it anymore.

Oh, I own a couple pairs of jeans, for those once-in-a-blue-moon spells where I want to dress like Shane from The L Word or a male British underwear model on his day off. And I certainly own plenty of leggings, which I layer over and lounge in. But by and large, I am a skirts-and-dresses girl, and pants can fuck right off.

I can’t tell you how many hours I’ve sacrificed questing for the pair of pants that would change my mind on this matter. The closest I’ve ever come were some vintage skinny black slacks that made me feel like a chic German schoolboy, or some near-perfect skinny jeans from my local thrift shop. But pants never quite feel like me. They always feel like I’m playing a character. I find them uncomfortable both physically and mentally.

So this year, I will not shop for pants. I will not try to figure out how to shoehorn pants into my style. I will not wear pants, except on days when the notion of doing so actually excites me (a rare thing). I will rock my skirts and my dresses and I will not try to be somefemme I am not.

Big hair, don’t care. Now, admittedly, my hair is not “big” by everyone’s standards. Bigness of hair is a spectrum! But in recent years, I have mastered the art of making my hair as wide and wild as it can get. My routine involves curl-enhancing conditioners, DevaCurl gel, vigorous scrunching, and a Turbie Twist microfibre towel. When I do it right, it results in a fucking lioness mane.

I’ve noticed that big hair gives me confidence like almost nothing else. It doesn’t eliminate my social anxiety, but it overshadows it a little. Tossing my curls around feels flirty and babely in a movie-star kind of way, and I want more of it. So I resolve to wear my hair big and curly as much as possible this year!

Shiny boots, shiny heart. Black leather boots are a signature part of my look; I wear them almost every day. The ones in heaviest rotation over the past couple years are my Frye harness boots, Frye engineer boots, and L.L. Bean winter boots. They make my heart sing, the way their severe stompiness balances out my airy-fairy femme ensembles.

But keeping leather boots looking good requires care and upkeep. They need to be regularly cleaned, conditioned, waterproofed, and shined. With proper maintenance, a good pair of leather boots can last for decades – and I intend for that to be the fate of mine!

Every couple months, I give my precious boots a thorough cleaning with saddle soap, and then shine ’em up with mink oil. I also just got my harness boots resoled because four years of wear had ground the soles flat. They are looking so lovely, and I will keep ’em that way!

Lipstick love. Gahhhd, I feel so foxy in lipstick. Hot pink. Bright red. Deep cranberry. Intense violet. Whatever. I want it on my face.

But despite my love for lipstick, I often skip it, because I worry it’ll draw too much attention to me, or it just seems like too much work. So for the coming year, I want to make an effort to wear it more often. Like so many other things on this list, lipstick makes me feel better about myself – but only when I make it a priority in my getting-ready routine.

It helps a lot to wear formulas I know are gonna stick around with minimal reapplication necessary. Some current faves in that category: Giorgio Armani Rouge d’Armani, Maybelline mattes, and anything by Bite.

One new tattoo. I’ve had a couple tattoo ideas floating around in my brain for months now, and I wanna get ’em done. It’s just a matter of deciding to go ahead with it, sending some reference materials to an artist, and booking a consultation appointment. Aaahh, the very thought is giving me joyful heart palpitations!

I think I want to go back to Laura Blaney, who did my “good girl” bows. She made me feel super comfortable, and her work is stunning. I have a feeling she’ll be able to give me exactly what I want.

Do you have any fashion-and-beauty goals or intentions currently?

Kiss and Make Up: High School, BJs, and the Disappearing Act

Kiss and Make Up is my new series wherein I review makeup according to how it held up in a sexual scenario. I hope you dig it!

making kissy faces with my friend Cadence in 2010I sprung for Duwop’s Lip Venom in the winter of 2010, when I had a new boy to kiss and it seemed desperately important that my lips look good. I’d wear the cinnamon-y gloss layered over MAC Russian Red (as pictured) or just on its own, and it would do its signature magic of irritating my lips into a plumper appearance. I loved it: the sharp spicy taste of it, the telltale tingle, and most of all, those plush pillowy lips it gave me. What an amazing invention.

My boyfriend, however, was less enthused. “What is on your lips?” he whined one day, mid-makeouts. The Lip Venom, he said, was stinging his lips. I apologized and wiped it off, as if this pretty pink gloss was the only obstacle between us and high-quality kisses. Truth be told, he was a distressingly bad kisser (by my tastes, anyway), and I wished he could’ve upped his game as easily and quickly as I upped mine by taking off that painful gloss.


I wore NARS Schiap lipstick the last day of Playground Conference in 2015. It paired well with my blue dress, pink handbag, and pigtails. In fact, my outfit was apparently so good that when I walked into a panel session late, I immediately got a text from my dom fuckbuddy, sitting across the room: “Oh god, you’re wearing thigh-high socks and a short skirt. I’m going to be thinking about eating you out all day.” This is a very good text to get at 11 in the morning.

NARS semi-matte lipsticks smell like clean laundry (so sayeth Sofie, who is correct). They go on satiny-smooth, and usually look good for several hours, even if you’re quaffing coffee like I was that day at Playground. However, put to the makeout test, they cannot hold their own. I discovered this when, later that day, I gave a hotel-room blowjob which morphed into an impromptu threesome – by the end of which, there was absolutely no lipstick left on my face. I smoothed on some peppermint lip balm to soothe the irritation I’d accrued from kissing a scruffy boy all afternoon, and that helped.

In my post-sex debrief with Bex over mac and cheese that night, we talked about how kissing someone who’s wearing lipstick is a lot like going down on someone who’s on their period. It’s messy, and maybe embarrassing, and I can completely understand why you wouldn’t want to do it. But I’ll like you so much better if you do.


me in pigtails and Pink Pong lipstickI fell in love with Bourjois liquid lipstick in Pink Pong at a drugstore and bought it on the spot. It was everything I most want in a lipstick: an eye-gougingly bright cool-toned pink, an opaque formula, a pleasant scent (pink grapefruit?), even a punny shade name.

Unlike many liquid lipsticks, Pink Pong felt comfortable once dry, and didn’t render my lips dry or cracked, even after many hours of wear. However, that dry texture is what allows truly long-haul lipsticks to stay put (and why Make Up For Ever Aqua Rouge comes with a clear gloss you’re supposed to wear on top of it). My new Bourjois treasure passed neither the makeout test nor the blowjob test.

That was the month when I was seeing both a boyfriend and a beloved fuckbuddy, alternating between them like my life was a buffet of good dicks (which, let’s be real, it often is). I wore Pink Pong to boyfriend’s house one afternoon and blew him while he sat on his couch like a king, arms spread wide, head dropping back in quiet pleasure. When we were done, I ducked into the bathroom and saw that there was no lipstick left on my mouth. None whatsoever. There sure was a lot on my hands, though. (Uhh, my BJs are pretty handsy.)

Later that week, I wore Pink Pong to my fuckpal’s place and we made out like teenagers in his cheap, squeaky bed. When he served us a post-canoodlin’ snack of spicy salmon sushi and Magnum ice cream bars (quelle gentleman!), he wiped his mouth on a napkin and the white scrap came away pink. “Aww, Kate, look, your lipstick’s all over my mouth,” he said, with an affection I had never known any boy to feel about my lipstick before. It made me want to kiss him a whole bunch more.


me in Maybelline Rich Ruby lipstickIn the late summer I briefly had a “spanking buddy.” It was a sweet deal. I’d go over to his place, we’d talk about the Adventure Zone and MBMBaM and other fine McElroy products, we’d vape some weed, and then he would spank me. The spankings were excellent: rhythmic, firm, and merciless. He always left both my sets of cheeks blushing.

One such night, I showed up with a full face of makeup, and by the time we said goodnight, there was none left at all. My lipstick of choice for the evening was Maybelline’s Rich Ruby, a creamy, matte, cool-toned red that normally holds up pretty well through food and drink. But it did not hold up through a spanking. Granted, when I get spanked, I typically bury my face in pillows/blankets/couch cushions, and sometimes I cry, and that combination of friction and fluid is not kind to makeup.

“How’s my lipstick looking?” I asked my spanking buddy when I raised my head off his bed, post-beating. He peered at me curiously and said, at last, “It’s not bad… it’s just… not there.” Indeed, it was not. My lipstick was gone.

After I left his place and went home, I got a text from him. “I found your lipstick,” he said. “It’s all over my blanket.” I laughed and apologized, and we said goodnight.


When my FWB came over to our sunny Airbnb in July to shoot BJ porn, I was nervous to the point of pacing and raving. “Hey, shh, it’s gonna be okay,” he told me. “You’re gonna be great.”

He had brought some underwear options, and asked for my help deciding which ones to wear – possibly as a tactic to distract me from my own jangling nerves. We eventually settled on some turquoisey boxer-briefs. “They’re moisture-wicking,” he commented, for no apparent reason, because he is a weirdo.

Just before filming was to begin, I knelt in front of him, my face all done up. On my lips was a combo of ColourPop’s lip pencil in Heart On and Bite’s fruity lipgloss in Bellini. I wasn’t at all confident it would stay on my face, but then, smeary lipstick is a selling point of BJ porn for some people. “I’m gonna kiss your dick through your underwear a bit before I start,” I jabbered nervously at my FWB. “Sorry in advance if I get lipstick all over these beautiful boxer-briefs.”

“It’s okay, they’re moisture-wicking,” he replied, and so there is a moment in the final porn scene where I giggle like a dork, and that is what I am giggling at.

By the time we finished, my face featured almost no lipstick but a euphoric, nervous-no-more kind of smile.

12 Days of Girly Juice 2016: 12 Femme Essentials

It’s December, and that means 12 Days of Girly Juice kicks off today! It’s my annual year-end series where I compile the best of the best from my whole year: everything from selfies to tweets to sexual encounters. Today we’re focusing on femme stuff – my favorite things that made me feel feminine, fancy and fiiine the whole year long.

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Hair

Bobby pins. There are some tragically unsung heroes of the beauty world – a really great hairbrush, a black eyeliner that is truly black, an eyeshadow blending brush that just works – and bobby pins are one of them. This year I used them for three primary purposes: to set my hair in pincurls (after creating the curls with a turquoise NuMe curling iron), to erect the front part of my hair in a triumphant pomp, and to pin bandanas into place so I could rock those rockabilly vibes all day long. I always carry bobby pins in my purse – they’re equally great if you need to pick a lock, scrub ash out of your bong’s bowl (#StonerLyfe!), or pin your bangs out of your face for an impromptu BJ. Soooo useful!

DevaCurl Ultra Defining Gel. This is the good shit. I have so much hair-admiration for my curly-headed sex blogger friends – Epiphora, Suz, and Hedonish, to name a few – but my own curls have always been hit-or-miss, because taking care of curly hair is so much work. However, this year I found a routine that works for me and creates excellent curls when that’s what I want to do. After washing and conditioning my hair, I use a cotton T-shirt to “scrunch” the excess moisture out of it, and then I flip my head over and scrunch in a few dollops of DevaCurl gel. Once that’s done, I cram my gestating curls into a Turbie Twist to help them dry even more. After at least an hour of turban’ed time, my hair’s ready to be taken out and air-dried – at which point, it becomes gloriously curly. DevaCurl’s products are brilliant, and the Ultra Defining Gel, in particular, rocks my world. I can go multiple days without needing to re-set my curls because this stuff keeps ’em in place for so long. YESSS!

Bandanas. I have always loved the rockabilly look – I gorged my eyes on SuicideGirls and old Bettie Page photos from practically the moment I discovered the internet – and I’ve attempted to replicate it to varying degrees of success over the years. In mid-2016 I briefly dated someone who loved that look, so I’d sometimes dress up as his good little Rosie the Riveting, complete with bandana, winged eyeliner, and red lipstick. I adore that aesthetic so much that it endured in my life even after that relationship ended. I especially love the delicious subversion of “queering” this classic 1950s look by choosing my bandana colors according to the hanky code.

img_5218Cosmetics

LORAC Pro palette. I am an extravagant femme, and therefore, I own an excess of eyeshadow palettes. There are many I love for their outlandishness or uniqueness – the Sugarpill Sweetheart palette, for example, or the Wet ‘n’ Wild Petal Pusher palette – but LORAC Pro is my favorite and most-used one, by a longshot. With its eight glitter shadows and eight mattes, all brilliantly pigmented and wonderfully blendable, it’s simply the most versatile bunch of neutrals I’ve ever owned. Whether I’m doing an everyday look or going all-out glamour-femme, I’m likely to reach for my LORAC Pro palette.

img_5216“Sleepy Sloan.” This is the name Tynan gave to the essential oil blend she custom-made for me, even though its effects don’t have anything to do with sleep; it’s just a cute name. I still adore this fragrance as much as I did when she first blended it for me. There’s a drop of it on the collar of my shirt or dress most days I go out, because it comforts and uplifts me.

Revlon lipstick in “Fire & Ice.” I didn’t think much of this lipstick when I first bought it. It’s a classic red that leans slightly orange, which has traditionally not been my jam; I’m more of a blue-based-reds girl. But this color has really grown on me: it’s punchy, saucy, and assertive, just like me on my best and boldest days. Slicking my lips in Fire & Ice gives me an easy confidence, a high-femme swagger. A tube costs about $8 at any drugstore, an admirable value for such a potent mood-booster.

img_5220Bourjois Rouge Edition liquid lipstick in “Pink Pong.” My other lipstick favorite in 2016 was, naturally, a bright pink. As a diehard devotee of pink lipsticks, I have lots of favorites – Bite’s “Violet,” NARS’ “Schiap,” and Revlon’s “Smitten,” to name a few – but this cool-toned, velvety pink really stole my heart this year. It’s not as long-lasting as some other liquid lipsticks I’ve tried, but it’s not as drying, either. If you’re looking for a hot pink that’ll light up your face and make your femme heart sing, this is one I’d recommend.

Clothes & Accessories

Aslan Leather collars. I have two: a pink one Bex bought me for my birthday and a black one I bought myself. I love them both. They’re comfy, good-lookin’, and they signal a bit o’ kink without being too over-the-top to wear in public. Oh, Aslan, why are you so good to us?

img_5221My hot pink Kate Spade purse. The model is the New Bond Street Florence. I bought it on a deep discount back in early 2014, but at that time, it felt almost too brashly femme for me; I was shyer then, and less willing to dress in a way that would command attention. But this year, I really “grew into” my gloriously pink handbag. It’s also conveniently big enough for my beloved MacBook Air, so I tote this bag on work-dates, weekend getaways, and airplanes. It makes me feel equal parts businesslady and fancy femme, and really, what more can you ask for?

MeUndies. I’ve enthused at you about these brilliant underthings before; I won’t repeat myself too much. Suffice it to say: it feels almost sinfully gratifying to swathe one’s genitals in lush, comfy fabric that’s covered in ghosts, donuts, dinosaurs, or little dancing dudes. All underwear should be this adorbz and well-made.

img_4819My new glasses. Before 2016, it had been a couple years since I’d gotten new glasses with my current prescription, and it was time. I’ve been trying to be braver and more authentically “me” lately, instead of always reverting to the shy, compliant little girl I’ve been forever, so I opted for some bold-as-hell frames when I bought new glasses this year. One pair is blue, one is black, and they’re both huge and distinctive. I feel like a hot nerdy bosslady when I wear them, which means I’ve been wearing glasses more often instead of just busting ’em out when I really need them. Hooray!

9279227874_ddd0ab3a62_kFrye harness boots. Mine are the 12R style in black, and I bought ’em back in January 2013. Since then, they’ve become my footwear of choice for so many different occasions: parties, dances, loungin’, adventurin’, performing at porn galas… Whatever my schedule calls for, really! This year I wore them in MaltaRomeMinneapolis, Chicago, and Alexandria, among other places. These boots are such a signature part of my aesthetic that Caitlin said they felt like they were cosplaying as me when they wore a floral-print dress and boots. Here’s to plenty more exciting exploits in 2017 and plenty more stompin’ around in these durable, glamorous boots!

What were your favorite beauty and fashion items in 2016?

Monthly Faves: Handsex, Hot Doms, & a Happenstance Threesome

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I was very smitten with November. After coming back from a two-week stint overseas, I felt even more in love with my hometown of Toronto than I normally do – not to mention, extra appreciative of the friends I had left behind here. I spent a lot of this month laughing, talking, and/or having sex with people who are super important to me, and all of it felt cozy and affirming. ❤️ Here are some of the products, ideas, and experiences I loved most this month…

Sex toys

• Kenton from Funkit Toys sent me a prototype of his Signet, a textured ring meant to be worn on the fingers for added stimulation during handsex. I wore it out to some events and several people marveled at my “elegant” ring, which I found hilarious. I was excited to use it with my FWB, since he’s already one of the best fingerbangers I’ve ever encountered – and holy jeez, it was great. As soon as he started fucking me while wearing the Signet, my decibel level rapidly increased, such that he laughed and said, “Oh, you like that, huh?!” Indeed: the texture adds an intensity that makes fingerbanging – already a favorite act of mine – even more delicious. Go buy a Signet; you only have until December 9th to do so!

• I spent the first 8 days of the month in Europe with no sex toys at my disposal except the G-Spoon and Tango I’d impulsively decided to bring. When I’m at home, these are both “second-string” toys for me: I’ll reach for the G-Spoon if I’m not up to the task of accommodating the Double Trouble or Eleven‘s girth, or if I specifically want to fantasize about having my A-spot fingered, and I’ll grab the Tango if I want something more pinpoint than the Magic Wand or that I can take in the bath. But maaan, they sure did the trick. The easiest formula for getting me off is a rumbly clit vibe + an A-spot-focused dildo, and this combo totally wins by those criteria.

• I bought a Hole Punch Fluke in a gorgeous blue ombré colorway. My vagina is deeeeeply enamored. It’s moreso a vaginal plug than a dildo; I like keeping it inside me while I watch porn and hold a Magic Wand to my clit. It’s the laziest possible way to administer G-spot stimulation and I love it.

Fantasy fodder

• When I’m in the mood to watch a dominant lady boss people around and be mean to ’em – a rare craving for me, but a potent one when it does come up – my first choice is always Aiden Starr. She’s one of the best dirty-talkers in the biz and she follows through on her smack-talk. I like this clip of “mad scientist” Aiden studying Daisy Ducati’s ejaculations, and Aiden forcing an orgasm out of Sara Luvv with a clit pump and a wand vibe. Good gawd, lady’s got game.

• I mentioned this in my Double Trouble post, and probably repeatedly on Twitter, but I’m not over my usually-vanilla-but-sometimes-vaguely-dominant FWB telling me, “See what happens when you trust me?” after I took his advice to relax into pleasure and he made me come. He told me later that he keeps his dom-y dirty-talk infrequent, partly because it makes him nervous but partly because the effect is heightened if his quips are few and far between. Um, yup. Very yup.

Sexcetera

• Mid-month, I had some friends over for a get-together, and among them were my favorite fuckpal and a beautiful lady. The day before, Suz had dreamed we had a threesome, so it was on my mind… as was the fact that each of these people had independently told me they’d be down to threesome with the other one. I took them each aside to separately ask if they were feelin’ threesome-y, and they both said yes – so later that night, after my other guests had skedaddled, a magical threesome materialized in my bed. It involved marijuana, a double blowjob, fingerbanging, toy-ramming, ample use of the Magic Wand Rechargeable, and lots of giggly makeouts wherein me and Suz kept squealing “You’re so pretty!” at each other. Overall: fantastic.

• Remember earlier this month when I told you all about how weed makes sex better for me? Yeah, I really practiced what I preach this month. At one point, my FWB and I got super high and he did stuff to my nipples with his hands and mouth, and I actually felt like I was sailing out of my body and into the astral plane from the sheer ecstasy of it. “That was hot,” he told me afterward. Yes, it certainly was.

• Some of my work elsewhere this month: I enthused about temperature play and ranted about buying partners sex toys for Ignite. I have a column about the decline of PIV in the latest issue of This. And on our podcast, Bex and I talked about handsex, PIV, butt stuff, and sexting. (Are you subscribed to our show yet?!)

Femme stuff

• I wanted to buy something glamorous while in Italy (’cause “When in Rome”!), so I stopped into a Sephora and picked up Armani Rouge d’Armani lipstick in “Lucky Red.” It’s the exact kind of red I like best: classic, cool-toned, and creamy but not glossy. The magnetic-closure tube makes me feel like a futuristic megababe, and the shade itself is a hot pop of confidence. I loooove it.

• When I’m feeling sartorially uninspired, I like dressing with a particular character or occasion in mind. When I went to an Andy Shauf show this month, I dressed like a navel-gazing hipster so I’d fit in with his crowd. When depression made it hard for me to get out of bed on American Thanksgiving weekend, Bex sent me a picture of them in their fancy family dinner outfit and told me to wear what I’d wear if I was going to their dinner with them. Other recent “costumes” include “hot grown-up Wednesday Addams,” witchy goth babe, and “butch greaser.” Hey, whatever works.

• I’ve been wearing my hair very curly lately (see also, and also, and also). My hair is naturally wavy, but a little wizardry with DevaCurl gel and a Turbie Twist can kick it up to eleven. Having giant hair makes me feel powerful, and I dig it.

Little things

This guide to helping a partner who’s having an anxiety meltdown (potential suitors, take note!). Putting lipstick on my five-year-old cousin at her request. The extreme peacefulness of the Ġgantija ruins. Curvy-lady statuettes. Hazelnut gelato, tiramisu, and cacio e pepe. Artistic advice from people I respect. My friend Lilly’s post about the BlogSquad. My SAD lamp. Going clothes shopping with hot friends and gasping dramatically over how gorgeous they look. Dancing to the Elwins in a dim basement with a new friend. Crackin’ jokes with my ex in a blessedly not-awkward way. “I’d die if I saw you; I’d die if I didn’t see you there.” Friends who happily accept my introvert-y proclivities. Making sweet potato risotto while listening to The Adventure Zone. Meeting a guy with swoopy hair at a party and telling him he looked like a Pokémon villain. Intoxicated BJs. Getting sex toys in the mail (always). Touch the Skyrim. Laughin’ it up with Brent and a bunch of nerds at a Use Your Words playtest. Makin’ New Year’s Eve plans with some babes I adore. Telling stories at TMSG (ideally when the people the story’s about are sitting in the front row and giggling at me). Sleeping At Last’s Atlas: Year One and his new Christmas album. My FWB doing a spot-on impression of my sex noises for my amusement.

What were your fave sexy thingz this month, babes?

Strange Self-Care in a Time of Terror

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The day after the election, like many of you, I couldn’t get out of bed. I couldn’t wash the previous night’s tear-streaked eyeliner off my face, or brush my teeth, or get dressed.

What I could do, and what I did do, was as follows: I put on some lipstick, watched YouTube videos and blowjob porn, and cried.

Self-care – or coping, because sometimes they are one and the same – is so unique from person to person. What’s comforting to you might be scary or weird to me, and vice versa. But with that caveat, here are some things I’ve been doing to take care of myself during what feels like a global depressive spell. I hope some of these suggestions help you, or at least inspire you to do what you can do for yourself.

img_5056Lipstick. If you ever see me wearing just lipstick and no other makeup, you’ll know I’m either feeling minimalistic in a French-starlet kind of way, or I’m depressed. It’s the easiest cosmetic to slick on when I barely have the emotional energy to look in a mirror. It doesn’t require the patience of liquid eyeliner, the precision of eyebrow pencil, the fastidiousness of foundation. It’s a simple, quick burst of color. It signals to my body and my brain that I am beginning my day, even if my pajamas and unbrushed hair say otherwise.

Mundane activities. If I can manage to get out of bed when depressed, I may be able to (slowly) work up to cleaning, doing laundry, or other boring day-to-day tasks. They are small and not terribly significant in the grand scheme of things, but they are something I can do, and it feels good to be able to do something when you’re depressed. My friend Sarah likes to bake, for similar reasons; she says doing something with her hands feels useful when depression makes it hard for her to move her body a lot. The other day I went to the mall with a friend because he needed to return a shirt he’d bought, and it was the sweetest banal respite. Sometimes going grocery shopping or stepping out for a coffee feels oddly affirming when I’m depressed. It’s okay to do small things when you can’t manage the big ones.

lBlowjob porn. I’m aware that this is unconventional, but that’s the point of this post, after all. While watching Heather Harmon porn in a weed-induced stupor the other day, I became aware that it was calming me down and comforting me. Part of that is simply that her porn is familiar to me; I know the rhythms and features of it, the noises I can expect from her husband Jim, the predictable cumshot at the end. And blowjobs are, historically, a calming activity for me. The love between Heather and Jim really comes through (no pun intended!) in their videos, and that helps, too. There is something so sweet and simple about a loving blowjob. When Heather does it, it is a gift without expectations of reciprocation. It is a pure expression of affection. In a world that feels cold and heartless, it can be nice to remember that there are still people who love each other that selflessly, somewhere; that there are still people who want to see their loved ones experience pleasure for pleasure’s sake.

Funny podcasts. I sing the praises of the McElroy brothers at any given opportunity. Their humor is goofy, fresh, and relentlessly kind. Whether I’m puzzling through advice questions with the brothers on MBMBaM, immersing myself in the fantasy world they’ve built in The Adventure Zone, or laughing til I cry at the weird creations of Monster Factory, I’m hardly thinking about my problems or worries when I’m mired in a McElroy show. It’s not hyperbole to say that these boys may have saved my life on many occasions.

3647718646_7d503c3a99_oMaking music. My songs are predominantly about romantic rejections and unrequited love – phenomena that feel huge when they’re happening to you, but pale in comparison to, say, the impending threat of a global economic collapse and the xenophobic mass ejection of immigrants. When the big things feel too scary to contemplate, it can help to whine about the small things for a while. And if perfectionism doesn’t make your anxiety worse, it can give you a concrete task to work on when the world’s issues feel unsolvable. I showed my friend Brent a song I wrote recently, and he – a seasoned songwriting teacher – gave me detailed notes about structure, syllables, melody and arrangement. Working toward perfection, even within the small world of a single song, felt fuelling when I would’ve otherwise been crushed by the weight of the global problems I cannot solve.

Scary media. Stephen King novels, American Horror Story, bad slasher films on Netflix – whatever works. There is some evidence that horror movies alleviate anxiety for some of us, and I’ve definitely experienced that. It’s comforting to feel that there is an actual, concrete reason for your fear, instead of just letting your nonspecific dread run rampant. And when the story resolves, some of your terror might, too. For similar reasons, my friend Sarah says reading erotica helps her anxiety. Don’t judge yourself for the seemingly strange self-care strategies you employ. If it works, it’s worth doing.

Marijuana. Some would say it’s not healthy to rely on substances to get you through tough times. I say that sometimes substances are the only things that can get you through and that may not be ideal but it’s still okay. Weed blurs my brain a little, forcing me to think one thought at a time instead of losing myself in worry. And it also reawakens my libido even at the unsexiest of times (more on that in a post coming out on Monday), enabling me to masturbate when I otherwise would’ve been too depressed to do so. Masturbation can be, for me, an important medicine, flooding my body with uplifting neurotransmitters and re-affirming my love for myself, so any impetus to do it more often is a good thing.

What are your unconventional self-care methods?

 

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