Planned Parenthood Withdraws From Title X Federal Funds. Here’s What That Means

Planned Parenthood has announced that it will withdraw from Title X, a federal program which helps make birth control, pregnancy tests, and screenings for sexual transmitted diseases accessible and affordable. The decision is due to the Trump administration’s new “gag rule,” which restricts what health providers can tell patients about abortion. Under this rule, if Planned Parenthood wanted to continue to receive funds through the program, it would no longer be able to offer abortion referrals or even suggest where a patient could get an abortion.

The Trump administration first introduced the new Title X rules in May, but it wasn’t until last week, when a federal court failed to halt them, that Planned Parenthood decided to pull out of the program.

Planned Parenthood has received Title X funds since the 1970s, but these federal dollars have never been used to fund abortions. And according to The New York Times, “Planned Parenthood receives about $60 million of the $286 million given annually by Title X to about 4,000 health centers providing reproductive health care, as well as screenings for breast cancer and cervical cancer, to about four million patients.” Without these resources, more than 1.5 million low-income women who rely on Planned Parenthood for pregnancy tests, birth control, STI screenings, and other services through Title X support could be affected. The organization has shared that one of their programs, a mobile health center in Cleveland, will have to close and that other clinics will feel similar pressure from the cuts.

“By forcing Planned Parenthood out of the Title X program, Trump is fulfilling his debt to the anti-choice movement—a vocal, extreme minority in this country—for their work to put him in the White House,” NARAL Pro-Choice America President Ilyse Hogue shared in a statement. “Millions of women and families who rely on Planned Parenthood for a full range of reproductive healthcare will be forced to pay the price for political payback by the Trump administration and their reckless Title X gag rule. The decision about when and with whom to have a family is one of the most personal and important decisions a person will ever make, and it’s definitely one that should be free from political interference.”

Christina Reynolds, vice president of communications at EMILY’s List, echoed Hogue’s sentiments. “Since day one, Trump and his Republican cronies have tried to defund Planned Parenthood and strip valuable reproductive care from millions of women. Today, those efforts have real and dangerous consequences for too many women in America. The Trump administration is using one of the largest and most valuable programs for providing affordable birth control and reproductive health care to bully providers, like Planned Parenthood, into withholding information on abortion. As the gag rule takes effect, millions of women will be left with nowhere to turn for essential health care like affordable birth control, cancer screenings, maternal care, and more,” she wrote in a statement.

Supporters of Planned Parenthood have also taken to Twitter to share their outrage. Presidential candidate Beto O’Rourke wrote, “Trump is taking tens of millions of dollars away from Planned Parenthood—jeopardizing the health of more than a million people across our country. Please donate to @PPFA today, so Trump can’t stop patients from receiving the care they need.”

Rep. Ilhan Omar tweeted, “Trump’s gag rule is forcing Planned Parenthood to withdraw from Title X. Last year alone 53,000 Minnesotans relied on Title X-funded clinics for cancer screenings, well person visits, birth control, and more. Losing access to this care puts lives at risk. Period.”

For Model Halima Aden, World Humanitarian Day Is Personal

To most who know or have heard of me, I’m Halima Aden, model. But long before I was the first model to wear a hijab on the cover of a major magazine or the first woman to wear a burkini in Sports Illustrated, I was just a child in the Kakuma Refugee Camp in Kenya where my family resettled after fleeing the civil war in Somalia. My childhood was happy, despite bouts of malaria and nights where I couldn’t sleep due to hunger. Through it all, I knew that I was safe.

That isn’t the case for all refugees.

This month I traveled with UNICEF USA to Italy where I met with migrants and refugees who have been through hell. Since 2014, more than 70,000 unaccompanied minors have arrived, and 86 percent of them are between the ages of 16 and 17. Imagine that: These kids aren’t thinking about getting their driver’s licenses or going on first dates. They are thinking about taking a journey that will put their lives at risk to escape conflict, trafficking, and other crimes against humanity.

The route is not an easy one. After walking through the desert for weeks or months, they face a harrowing passage across the Mediterranean Sea that one in 11 people do not survive. When they reach the shores of Italy, they are safer, but their troubles are not behind them.

I met with eight resilient young women at a UNICEF-supported reception center in Palermo who survived the journey, but are still waiting to receive legal documentation. I met with Petra, who made the trek to Italy without any family, but continues to light up rooms with her infectious laugh. I met with Gabby, who has experienced pain and violence that no girl should ever know, but has the voice of an angel that could move anyone to tears. I met with Patience, who has been waiting for documentation in Palermo for almost two years, but whose conviction has never wavered.

“We refugee girls in Italy have a bright future and want a bright future and have plans to become something amazing in life. We don’t want to stay at the reception center,” she told me. “We want jobs and we know we need education to make that happen. Living here is not easy, but every day I work to show the Italian community that we are capable of being a part of this country. We are not just depending on their documents; we have skills, we have ideas and we want to change the world.”

Patience wants to become a lawyer one day. She knows nothing will be handed to her and that she needs to optimize on every opportunity that is presented to her to make her dreams come true. But she needs our help. Unaccompanied minors like Patience need to be protected from exploitation and violence and provided access to psychosocial support. Lawmakers around the world must take action to combat the root causes of violence and poverty pushing children and adolescents to flee. And it’s our responsibility to stand up for what is right and to remember that no matter their status, their location or their background, children are children.

We must use our collective voice to remind those empowered within our governments that there is no place for politics when it comes to children. As a former refugee, I implore you to remember that and support organizations like UNICEF that are working to make sure children all over the world have opportunities not just to survive, but to thrive. We will all be richer for it.

Meghan Markle and Prince Harry’s Latest Vacation Is Causing Controversy

Elton John is not here for the latest controversy surrounding Meghan Markle and Prince Harry.

For context: The Duke and Duchess of Sussex just returned from a vacation at John’s palatial estate in the South of France. They traveled to and from the quick jaunt via private jet, which some are branding as hypocritical due to the couple’s environmentalism work. One tabloid even referred to Prince Harry and Markle’s mode of transportation as “gas-guzzling.”

But John is coming to the royals’ defense. It turns out the pop icon both paid for Markle and Prince Harry’s private jet and ensured it was carbon neutral—thus shutting down all the people who think they aren’t practicing what they preach. (According to People, making something “carbon neutral” means calculating how much a flight makes in greenhouse emissions and then donating that amount to a charity or project that’s striving to reduce emissions.)

“I am deeply distressed by today’s distorted and malicious account in the press surrounding the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s private stay at my home in Nice last week,” John wrote on Twitter. “Prince Harry’s mother, Diana Princess Of Wales, was one of my dearest friends. I feel a profound sense of obligation to protect Harry and his family from the unnecessary press intrusion that contributed to Diana’s untimely death. After a hectic year continuing their hard work and dedication to charity, David and I wanted the young family to have a private holiday inside the safety and tranquility of our home. To maintain a high level of much-needed protection, we provided them with a private jet flight.”

John continued, “To support Prince Harry’s commitment to the environment, we ensured their flight was carbon neutral, by making the appropriate contribution to Carbon Footprint™. I highly respect and applaud both Harry and Meghan’s commitment to charity and I’m calling on the press to cease these relentless and untrue assassinations on their character that are spuriously crafted on an almost daily basis.”

See John’s tweets for yourself, below:


How to Dye Curly Hair Without Damaging It

Every curly-haired woman has a curly hair horror story. It might involve going to a salon that doesn’t know how to properly cut and shape. It might have to do with a stylist getting a little overzealous with heat and causing your subsequent fear of flatirons. It might even center on someone using a relaxer to “tame” your curls a bit (yes, this happens). We have trust issues, and rightfully so. Our hair is high-maintenance and sensitive at the same time. Anything that threatens our natural curl pattern—which we’ve spent years coddling, moisturizing, and detangling—is met with a lot of well-justified hesitation.

Naturally, when I decided I wanted to get highlights recently, I experienced an unsettling combination of feelings: cautious, skeptical, and extremely nervous. Even with the research I’d done on how to dye curly hair—an essential step before any salon visit—I still had a deep-seated fear that something could go wrong.

Thanks to my extensive research, it turns out I had nothing to worry about. My biggest piece of advice from this experiment: Find a great colorist. That’s undoubtedly the most important part of the process. Below, seven more tips on how to dye curly hair that’ll ensure you walk away with perfectly colored curls.

Book a Consultation—And Explore Alternatives to Bleach

Before any color appointment, you should always book a consultation. It’s helpful to bring in reference photos, then work with your colorist to see if it’s possible to duplicate those results on your hair type. Seventy-two hours ahead of my appointment, I went to London’s 3Thirty Salon to meet with stylist and owner, Tiff J. During our consultation, she asked what I was looking for and gave me more than enough time to ask all of my burning questions. Since I was shooting for a warm caramel shade and had “virgin hair” (meaning it hadn’t been colored before), she informed me that we would skip the bleach and opt for a permanent tint instead. If I had wanted a lighter tone, though, bleach would have been necessary.

That’s not to say bleach isn’t safe; you can use it on curly hair and retain your texture when it’s applied carefully and properly. Curly girls are often told that this step can ruin our texture and the only way to save it is to cut it off. This is and isn’t true—many factors go into taking your hair from healthy to fried. For instance, if your hair has a lot of elasticity to it and you’ve been moisturizing, you’re likely a better candidate than someone who uses a lot of heat and skips their deep conditioners. Another factor is your colorist, which is why the consultation is so important. Ideally, they’ll talk through some alternative techniques with you and work out a plan to limit damage instead of immediately pulling out the bleach. If that’s the case, you might want to book elsewhere.

“[Some colorists] think any dark hair that needs to be lifted more than four shades needs bleach,” says Tiff. “That’s where people go wrong.” However, keep in mind that if you already have color in your hair and want to go cooler-toned or lighter, your colorist may need to use bleach to lift it and cleanse the cuticle.

Load Up on the Olaplex

According to Tiff, a big saving grace for women who color their hair—both curly and otherwise—has been the invention of Olaplex. “That’s our best friend,” she says. “Colors break down the natural bonds within the hair, so what Olaplex does is rebuild as much as possible. That way you don’t feel like your texture changes so much.” She mixes the salon-grade product into the color itself, then shampoos and conditions hair with the rest of the range.

Netflix’s The Politician: Everything We Know So Far

At last, we finally have a first look at The Politician, Ryan Murphy’s first TV show for Netflix. (The prolific producer signed a deal with the streaming giant in April 2018.) Starring Ben Platt, Gwyneth Paltrow, Jessica Lange, and Zoey Deutch, this comedy-drama seems to mix the campy comedy of Glee with the biting wit of Scream Queens. So, in other words, Ryan Murphy is quite literally in its DNA.

Here’s everything we know about the show so far:

The release date. September 27, 2019.

The episode count. The first season will consist of eight episodes, and a second season has already been green-lit.

The premise. Per the show’s first official trailer (watch below), The Politician centers on a vicious high school presidential campaign set in an upscale suburb. Platt stars as Payton Hobart, a type-A, whip-smart student keen on winning the race, while Lucy Boynton plays Astrid, his biggest competition. Meanwhile, Zoey Deutch portrays Infinity Jackson, a seemingly sick female student who runs alongside Payton as his vice president. Thrown into the mix is Jessica Lange as Infinity’s mother and Gwyneth Paltrow as Payton’s mom.

Watch the trailer for yourself, below:

The cast. A full list can be found here. According to Variety, both Bette Midler and Judith Light are slated to make guest appearances in The Politician, as well.

Jessica Lange in The Politician.


The Morning Show: Everything We Know So Far

The Internet practically erupted in July 2017 when news broke that Jennifer Aniston and Reese Witherspoon would be starring in an upcoming series for Apple TV titled The Morning Show. The project is the actors’ first together since playing sisters on Friends nearly 20 years ago, and it looks good. Like, really good. Details around The Morning Show are scarce at this point, but we have a full trailer and mini-teaser that give away some tea. Here’s everything we know about the series so far.

The release date. Fall 2019, according to the first teaser that Apple TV dropped in August. An exact date isn’t known at this time.

The premise. Per the first official trailer, The Morning Show focuses on how the staff of a popular A.M. news program copes with its lead anchor, Mitch Kessler (Steve Carell), being fired in the wake of a scandal. At the center of this drama is Kessler’s co-anchor, Alex Levy (Jennifer Aniston), who attempts to carry on without him but faces backlash from sexist executives. Reese Witherspoon plays another reporter, Bradley Jackson, who comes into the mix and shakes things up. Watch the trailer for yourself, below:

The cast. Aniston, Witherspoon, and Carell are the leads of the show. Billy Crudup, Mark Duplass, and Gugu Mbatha-Raw also star. A full cast list can be found here.

Gender dynamics are at the center of this story. “Through the prism of those under-slept, over-adrenalized people in front of and behind the camera, we take an honest look at the complex relationships between women and men in the workplace, and we engage in the conversation people are a little too afraid to have unless they’re behind closed doors,” Aniston said at a preview event for the show, according to Entertainment Weekly.

If You Love the Leopard Midi, You Need This Slip Skirt for Fall 2019

Once a singular fashion item reaches an Instagram-account-dedicated-to-documenting-it level of ubiquity, you can’t help but look around at the emerging trends and wonder: Which one’s next? In 2019, the Amazon Coat dominated over winter, then the leopard midi took over in the springtime and through the summer. As for what “it” will be this fall, our money’s on the latter’s relative, the monochromatic slip skirt, which, according to Pinterest, is already receiving quite a lot of attention online.

In a recent report, Pinterest revealed that interest in “satin skirt street style” has increased by 706% in 2019. The term “silk midi skirt” has also seen a boost (it’s up 302% compared to last year) on the platform in recent months. You know how it goes: If people are pinning it, they’re probably planning on ways to wear it. But you could also just start scrolling through street style and understand that this one item is on its way to Instagram fame.

This could be you this autumn.

Christian Vierig

A satin slip skirt feels luxurious no matter what you style it with: a plain T-shirt, an oversized knit, a matching satin top; sneakers, kitten heels, a combat boot. And you can find one at every budget, whether you’re looking to invest in a nicer designer style or pick up one under $50 to see what all the fuss is about.

Get a head-start on the trend you’ll inevitably start wanting halfway through the season and shop the best slip skirts for fall 2019 right here.

The Best Retinol Cream I’ve Tried: Kate Somerville +Retinol Vitamin C Moisturizer

I have a confession: As much as I confidently advise all my friends, colleagues, and random strangers to slather their faces in the best retinol creams and serums, I rarely go anywhere near them myself. As someone who takes pride in being glowy, you’d think I’d be be stocking up. The vitamin A derivative has been proven to speed up the turnover rate of your cells, which translates to a smoother, clearer complexion. It’s one of the few ingredients that dermatologists have backed for years, and I’ve seen its effects on others firsthand, but my routine has remained conspicuously retinol-free for years.

The best way to explain my avoidance is that my previously acne-prone self was introduced to retinol through its prescription cousin, Retin-A, also known as tretinoin or retinoic acid. If you haven’t tried it before, it’s strong, much stronger than retinol. After one week of using it, you will realize exactly how much skin can flake off your face per day (a terrifying amount, as it turns out). If your doctor, like mine, instructs you to apply it more frequently than you should, you’re in for one red, inflamed complexion before your acne eventually clears.

One miserable year with Retin-A was enough to put me off anything that sounded remotely similar to the word. In theory, I knew retinol was much gentler—and extensive beauty research had taught me that the way to incorporate it into your beauty routine is gradually, using it a few nonconsecutive days a week and buffering with moisturizer if needed. In practice, I always ended up reaching for something else.

Fate intervened when I had one too many late nights and ate one too many slices of home-baked cake this summer, and my skin had some feelings about it. Aside from breakouts on my cheeks and clogged pores on my nose, my complexion just looked somewhat duller and sadder overall. I did what I always do in this situation and went into the giant cardboard box that doubles as my disorganized beauty closet. And in its depths, the first thing I unearthed just happened to be a gleaming bottle of Kate Somerville +Retinol Vitamin C Moisturizer. It seemed like the right time to welcome it into my life.

Resolving to proceed cautiously this time, I began slowly incorporating it into my routine for a week. “It takes two to four weeks to adjust to retinol,” says dermatologist Joshua Zeichner, M.D., confirming everything I learned the hard way. “I typically recommend applying retinol-based products every other night and advancing as tolerated over the next month.”

I followed his instructions, never applying it more frequently than every other night, and sometimes leaving an extra night in between for good measure. The brand says it’s possible to use this nightly, but I decided it wasn’t the right time for me to live on the edge. To be extra safe, I concentrated the moisturizer only on the areas that needed it most—dispensing a single pump of lightweight, silky cream out of the airtight tub. I’d then dab tiny amounts over layers of essence and serum on my nose, mid-cheeks, and chin. I was also careful to avoid the apples of my face, which are prone to mild rosacea and thus don’t really appreciate any disruption of the retinol sort. This process was strictly reserved for nighttime only (as retinol should always be)—and always followed by copious amounts of sunscreen during the day. I paired it with my latest year-round obsession, the Dynamic Skin Recovery SPF 50 Moisturizer from Dermalogica. I kept this up for two weeks, and—wow.

Ryan Reynolds Reveals the Best Present Blake Lively Has Ever Given Him

Ryan Reynolds and Blake Lively have kept a relatively low profile since they confirmed in May they’re expecting their third child. But the Pokémon Detective Pikachu actor opened up about their relationship, slightly, on Instagram over the weekend. In a new post, Reynolds revealed the best present Lively has ever given him—and of course it’s incredibly sweet and sentimental.

“This piece of art is the greatest present my wife has ever given me,” Reynolds wrote on IG alongside a photo of himself next to a painting, which depicts a young boy delivering papers in a suburban neighborhood. It turns out the image is semi-biographical. “My first job was delivering newspapers for the Vancouver Sun. The house in the painting is my childhood home. My brothers and I spent years trying to kill each other on that lawn. There are a lot of Easter eggs in the painting, including my idol, John Candy, on the front page of the newspaper. The house no longer stands but it’s a living, breathing thing in my head.”

The painting was done by American artist Danny Galieote, who shared the photo Reynolds posted to his own Instagram with the caption, “I am honored and humbled to announce that I created this painting for the man, Mr. Ryan Reynolds @vancityreynolds. (He posted this last evening and I officially have permission to mention it.) It was really such an honor to make this meaningful, personal piece for him (commissioned by his amazing wife, Blake Lively)…I’m really very VERY proud to have made this painting for them. With much gratitude. Cheers to you, Ryan and Blake.”

“If there’s ever a fire, I’m grabbing this first. I’ll come back for Blake,” Reynolds also joked in his caption.

Mark Sagliocco/FilmMagic/Getty Images

Ryan Reynolds and Blake Lively confirmed their third pregnancy not by words, but with a red carpet look. Lively attended the New York City premiere of Pokémon Detective Pikachu earlier this summer wearing a yellow dress that showed off her growing baby bump (see above). And just like that a viral moment was born.

Your Horoscope for the Week of August 19, 2019

Leave the high-stakes drama behind as the sun and Venus shift into methodical Virgo this week. Tidy up, refine and polish recent creations or romance. Cut loose thoughts, habits, or people that don’t amplify the best version of you. Most importantly, attend to your mind/body connection; settle racing thoughts by creating a simple ritual you can adhere to, to begin your day in a mindful way. Read on to discover what’s in store for your sign during the week of August 19 through to August 25, 2019, and double down by getting to know your rising sign.

Aries | Aries rising

Your fiery enthusiasm often sees you out in front Aries, yet sometimes you charge through your day without abandon and miss special moments. Sidestep life’s speeding tickets this week and try to be one with each moment. Develop a ritual to ground your actions in a way that encourages presence. Try savoring every sensual experience from opening your eyes in the morning, to your shower, to your daily coffee/chai/green juice. Smell its aroma, taste its flavor, feel it as you sip and notice your body buzz as it wakes up into the day. Continuing the theme from the last few weeks, it’s also a good time to share your creative ideas in a big way. Tuesday is the day to aim high and take your best shot. Launch or connect with a media platform or person that inspires and resonates with you.

Taurus | Taurus rising

You’re a lover of pleasure and, this week, the sun and your ruling planet Venus moves into your sphere of romance so—if you’re single—get to mingling and tidy up your dating profile. If partnered, focus clearly communicate your language of love so your needs can be met. It’s all about the details under Virgo’s fastidious light, so pay extra attention to what you’re doing to bring joy by pursuing your personal interests. DIY slow foods like sprouting, fermenting or even trying your hand at making bread—healthy and nutritious could serve as a meditative past time that also tastes great. This last quarter moon phase is prime time to let go of activities that aren’t serving you and refine what is.

Gemini | Gemini rising

This week continues on the theme; ‘Home is where the heart is’ for you as the sun and Venus take up residence in your zone of hearth and family. As active Mars is also in the sign of Virgo, you can make the most of this earthy and practical energy with a major stock take and edit of accumulated gadgets. Get out your tool kit or call a handy person to repair anything you’ve been avoiding around the homestead. Or tap into your practical side and work some magic with a makeover. It doesn’t need to be your perfect vision of a luxe pad, sometimes it’s those extra touches and small details that make a difference. Virgo is associated with simple health and exercise so get moving this week, consider trying your hand at cooking your own meals, or just add a few superfoods to your breakfast each day to start the morning right.