Stream It Or Skip It?

Robert Hundley

Not So Pretty is a four-part docuseries, produced by Kirby Dick and Amy Ziering (Allen V. Farrow) that exposes the tricks of the cosmetics and private care industries, which are loosely controlled at best, with the Fda having minimal electric power to implement variations. The 4 episodes have broad types — Make-up, Nails, Pores and skin and Hair — but emphasis down on just one or two goods to demonstrate just how pernicious the challenges are and how significant businesses attempt to prevent the fact obtaining out.

Opening Shot: Photographs of stars in makeup. Narrator Keke Palmer states, “From performances on video clips to the massive display to the purple carpet, make-up is a big part of how we existing ourselves.”

The Gist: In the 1st episode, about makeup, the existence of talc in merchandise is talked about, concentrating on two merchandise: Kids’ make-up from Claire’s and Johnson’s Infant Powder. Simply because talc is mined up coming to asbestos, cross-contamination is unavoidable, and asbestos has been identified in the two merchandise, and really a great deal anything else with talc, even merchandise claiming to be asbestos-no cost.

Corrin Otillo, from Louisiana, performed with makeup her whole lifestyle and created a career out of it. She also applied plenty of toddler powder. In her 20s, she was someway diagnosed with mesothelioma, which ordinarily has an effect on individuals who function with asbestos. In Rhode Island, Kristiana Wagner had the Claire’s make-up set she acquired for her daughter MacKenzie when, just after seeing the asbestos cases her mother worked on at her legislation firm, puzzled if her makeup experienced it also. Positive sufficient, there ended up hundreds of thousands of little asbestos fibers, only noticed by means of electron microscopes, but ample to bring about most cancers above many years of publicity.

Did Johnson & Johnson or Claire’s do something about these conditions? Not at first. In actuality, Dick and Ziering uncover documents that confirmed that J&J realized about the asbestos material of their little one powder dating back again to the early 1970s, but kept selling it, mostly by manipulating the govt to let them self-regulate, then creating tests that purposely found no asbestos.

Not So Pretty
Picture: HBO Max

What Exhibits Will It Remind You Of? Not So Pretty has a little bit more of a rapidly-paced vibe than Netflix’s Damaged, which experienced an episode on the cosmetics market. But the episodes are just as surprising as the kinds on Damaged.

Our Consider: A crucial selection Dick and Ziering built when putting together Not So Quite is that they made a decision to concentrate on a single or two solutions per episode. It’s a fairly ingenious 1 by focusing in on a individual product or service or goods, you get an overview of the troubles with that segment of the own treatment marketplace without the need of having confused by research and lawsuits and stats. It shows what organizations major and small try to get absent with in the mainly unregulated personalized treatment business, permitting the viewer come to a decision whether or not the tales translate to the section as a entire.

In the episode about hair, for occasion, the narration concentrates on DevaCurl, which became a major products in the 2010s and drove the “curly hair movement” for ladies weary of straightening their hair to conform to European magnificence expectations. The challenge was, the items had been making the women’s hair brittle and it would fall out in clumps, and it gave them other issues. Of system, they denied all the things, but also discreetly reformulated their merchandise to choose the toxic components out. And which is the rub: Until men and women complain en masse, there’s no incentive for these corporations to transform their products and solutions.

All of this depressing information and facts is presented in a zippy format, with Palmer’s critical but not somber narration. Each episode finishes with guidelines on what the viewer can do to avoid products that can damage them, so the total vibe is that the electric power is nevertheless in the consumers’ arms.

Intercourse and Pores and skin: None.

Parting Shot: In statements, Claire’s and J&J still deny there is asbestos in their merchandise, while J&J no for a longer period sells talc-dependent powders in North The united states (but they do somewhere else) and Claire’s makeup no extended has talc.

Sleeper Star: We’re offering this to MacKenzie Wagner, who had the foresight to request her mom about whether or not her makeup experienced asbestos. How she designed that connection, we’ll never know.

Most Pilot-y Line: In just about every episode, the Food and drug administration is initial talked about with Palmer indicating “The Meals and Drug Administration, aka the Food and drug administration.” Are there people today who don’t know what the letters “FDA” stand for? Or is this for intercontinental viewers?

Our Get in touch with: STREAM IT. Not So Pretty presents some really harrowing details in a tone that’s less hectoring and a lot more sympathetic. By playing the, “hey, we didn’t know, both, buddy” card, its concept is even much more helpful.

Joel Keller (@joelkeller) writes about food items, entertainment, parenting and tech, but he doesn’t kid himself: he’s a Tv set junkie. His crafting has appeared in the New York Instances, Slate, Salon,,, Speedy Company and in other places.

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