It Came From the Swamp

Tarte Cosmetics launched a limited-edition eye and cheek palette earlier this summer titled “Swamp Queen.” I don’t know about you, but the name doesn’t exactly promise beauty sovereignty.

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While the name itself isn’t overly ridiculous, I feel the need to speak out for my people — Southerners from the Deep South, that is. Having spent much of my formative years in southern Mississippi and Louisiana, where we eat things that do come from the mud, alligators cross the road and the stink of Bourbon Street is like a welcome home, we take our connections to the bayou seriously. While many of us may very well feel like a queen of the swamp — especially after a few hurricanes or hand grenades — the name of this makeup palette has left me with a little dry mouth.

After a bit of research, it turns out that “Swamp Queen” is the pseudonym of YouTube personality Bunny Meyer, who is also known as grav3yardgirl. She’s from Pearland, Texas, which is a suburb of Houston. I don’t know about you folks, but Pearland is no more the swamp than Washington, D.C. And, while her “swamp family” is growing faster than you can say Tchoutacabouffa River, her connection to the swamplands only goes as far as the History Channel.

“Grabbin’ gators with one hand and gulping sweet tea with the other,” is her tagline. The gator, in her case, is stuffed I believe. Tea — at least she knows how it should be drunk.

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Inside, the names of the individual blushes and shadows are only slightly less counterfeit. Is “Gator Wings” her homage to the University of Florida for a winning season? Is “Sippy Sippy” baby talk for the Magnolia State (that’s Mississippi, friends). Oh wait, there is a “Big Baby” eyeshadow shade …

I assume most, if not all, are some reference to her YouTube video segments or slang she uses. I will say that the palette itself features some very lovely colors, and I would expect nothing less from Tarte. However, if Ms. grav3yardgirl wanted to truly represent the swamp, she fell short of some of its signature colors: purple, gold and black.

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Stupid Makeup Names

A couple of years ago I stumbled upon this fantastic blog on the ridiculous names of nail polish. Stupid Nail Polish Names features satirical commentary, and dare I say social/political/cultural criticism, on nail polish branding. The blog delves into the “inventiveness” of such names as “Iris I Was Thinner,”Red Thong in Divorce Court,” (what?!?!?) and my personal favorite, “Dick Weed.”

The blogger? Genius! The polish puns? Not so much. Sadly, it appears the blog is no longer posting new material. Because bad fashion and bad make-up (both literally and figuratively) go hand in hand, I will pick up where “Stupid Nail Polish Names” left off. Of course, I will happily relinquish the torch should the blog ever start posting again.

I’ll start by taking a look at some of my own stash. A quick look at my lipstick bag — yes I have a bag just for lipstick — reveals a name that not only seems lazy but also somewhat repellent to actually wear.

I bring you “Mush,” by butter London.

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Described as a “dusty coral creme matte lipstick,” I’m not sure I want to put on something that reminds me of cornmeal boiled in water or milk. They should just say the formula is “porridge for your lips” rather that creme matte. Also, the last time I checked, cornmeal wasn’t “dusty coral.” I’m from the South, I know.

Further, mushing is traveling by dog sled. And, while I love dogs and almost took a dog-sled trip while in Iceland in March, this just makes me think about those warnings of not letting your dog lick you on the mouth, particularly this gross picture that constantly pops up on other sites.

Thanks butter London. That’s the look I’m really going for. On the bright side, it really is a pretty color, although I think it’s less “dusty coral” and more “dusty rose.”

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All that being said, do send me your stupid nail polish and make-up names here.