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Horrible Medical Advice: Martha’s DIY Plastic Surgery

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It’s been a while, I know. See, I finished school, and then I was desperately searching for a job, and then I got TWO jobs, which took up more time than I expected considering that I still work much less than full time. But you know what? I’m blaming the fact that Netflix has pretty much every show that I’ve ever thought, “Oh, I want to watch that, but I missed the first few seasons” on streaming, so sue me I’ve been watching a lot of Netflix recently.

But more importantly. Do you remember last summer, when I said that sometime I’d get drunk and write a post?

This is that time. This…is sometime.

And it’s more Horrible Medical Advice. I know y’all love that shit. And this is reader-request, so no one can even complain.

Dear Oh Rachael,

Ever since I became a real grown-up (as opposed to some whiny teenager who only thought her skin sucked), my skin has totally sucked. I have wrinkles and shit. What do you recommend I do for this?

Sincerely, Your Aunt.

(Okay, my aunt didn’t, technically speaking, write to me. But she did say I should write this, so that sort of counts.)

Dear My Aunt,

A lot of people think their skin sucks when they get past age 20. In fact, I’ve recently been plagued by the “Dammit Why Doesn’t My Skin Look Like It Did When I Was 18 Only Six Years Ago” Virus as well. However, if your problem goes beyond “my pores are bigger than they were, WHAAAAAAA,” then I highly reccommend the Martha Stewart Approach.

Has anyone else noticed that Martha Stewart doesn’t age?

I can't guarantee this is a picture from 2000, but it did come up in an image search for "Martha Stewart 2000."

Well, that might be a picture of her in 2000. And what does she look like now, a full 12 years later? And remember, she’s at an age where a 10 year difference should be HUGE. (I mean, I have friends who are 20ish and friends who are 30ish and they don’t look all that different to me, but from 40 to 50 and 50 to 60 and 60 to 70 and so on…those are supposed to make a huge difference.)

Showed up when I searched "Martha Stewart Current," so it might be a current picture.

You may notice that she looks exactly the same.

Okay, one picture is HD and the other isn’t. In that case, my advice is to not take pictures with HD cameras, because hot damn will they show off every imperfection. But what REALLY happened here?

What happened is that good ol’ Martha did some jail time. And by “jail time,” I mean “house arrest.” And by “house arrest,” I mean “the same ol’ thing Martha always does, except she’s got an excuse for the cameras not to show her for a while so if she has a visit from a little ol’ plastic surgeon no one will be the wiser.”

That’s right, folks. To look asthe-same-age-you-looked-ten-years-ago, all you’ve got to do is get arrested. Then, you’ll be free to do all of Martha’s DIY Plastic Surgery you can.

If you can’t afford an at-home plastic surgeon, don’t worry. A facelift is simple, and that’s the most basic of your underlying needs. One you have one, it’ll be a long time before you start worrying about your really minor imperfections!

All you need for a facelift is a scalpel and some medical tape. You can get the medical tape at any drugstore–just tell them you’ve got a kid with a sprained finger and you need to tape it into the splint and they’ll take you right to it. Hell, you might even have some on hand!

Now all you need to do is imagine your skin like a piece of plastic wrap over the dip-bowl of your face. Pull it tight in segments, starting at one temple. Work in opposites–that is, pull one temple fairly tight, then pull the other temple the rest of the way. Now move down a little bit. Repeat–pull one side a little tight, then pull the other side so you’re completely wrinkle-free. Keep working around your face.

Once you’ve reached your chin, you’ll be all set! All you’ll have to do now is let your project (that is, your face) dry completely (that is, heal completely) and you’ll have a full Martha Stewart DIY At-Home Facelift. You can start a little higher by cutting around your forehead, or customize your lift to focus on problem areas–it’s up to you! That’s the beauty of DIY.

Now, dear My Aunt, I hope this has answered your questions and concerns. I’m sure that in a few months, after hiding in your home and avoiding any social interaction for a long, long time, you’ll look just as young and beautiful as you did ten years ago. In the meantime, I hope to give you as much reading material as I can without getting distracted from the series I’m currently reading (just say NO to Netflix, kids!).

Thank you all so much for your time.


Oh, Rachael.

Do you have a question for Rachael? Well, she now has a special email address just for you! Whether it’s medical or just, you know, a random question, send Rachael an email at She’ll respond with a Horrible Medical Advice post, a Horrible Advice post, or just a Horrible Advice email to help get you through your misery!

(Seriously, please email me. Your questions are inspiring, and I miss writing for you.)


Thank you, Dr. Boyfriend. We all appreciate your advice. However, you’re male, so you can’t possibly understand, and we’ll be getting back to our DIY surgeries now.


Horrible Medical Advice of the Week: Ancient Native American Dandruff Remedy

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Of course, the Native Americans didn’t realize that they’d happened upon a great dandruff remedy at the time. It’s only centuries after they stopped that we’re able to look back and see how practical scalping could be.

Now, okay. Some of you may be worried. I can hear you. “Scalping? Didn’t that kill people?” Well, yeah, but so did strep throat. And if a doctor told you that a chronic issue you had could be cured with an injection of strep bacteria, which would be immediately treated with the proper antibiotics, would you go for it? Probably! Medicine’s come a long way, so let’s see where we can go with this one.

Okay. So you use a knife, I think. And you cut around your hairline. Or something. I’m not exactly sure and honestly? I don’t want to look it up because I might find gross pictures. (Note: I also don’t want to look up strep throat.) And then I guess you rip really hard, because even if skin is pretty much completely detached it still holds on pretty well. I don’t know why. I just know that I had a blister and I could see the raw and icky stuff under it but it still hurt like a bitch to pull the skin off it. So it’ll hurt like a bitch. But you’ve got options! That should make everything better.

Option 1: Don’t cut very deep. You only need to remove enough skin to form a scar, because hair doesn’t grow out of scars. Usually. So get a boxcutter that has medical-grade precision when it comes to how far out the blade sticks, and you’ll be left with raw skin that will scar over and you probably won’t bleed to death.

Option 2: Cauterize the wound. Take a bowl that is about the size of your head and stick it in a fire that you built in your backyard (if you don’t have a backyard, try the kitchen). When you’re done ripping your scalp off, use giant tongs and oven mitts to grab the bowl out of the fire and put it over your head. If you’re not careful, it might end up sticking to your head, which would mean that instead of dandruff you have a permanent metal helmet. So you might want to decorate it first, viking-style. If it doesn’t stick to your head, the heat will cause you to stop bleeding.

Option 3: Superglue. Fill the same bowl that you’d use in option 2 with superglue. As soon as your scalp is removed, dunk your head in the bucket. You’ll glue all the blood in. You might have the same issue with it sticking to your head, so I’d say you should still decorate it like a viking helmet.

So there you have it. Just like aspirin, modern medicine is now able to take something discovered by the Native Americans* and make it available to everyone.

*I’m not actually entirely sure they did this. I just read about it in A Light in the Forest when I was 12. I hated that book. It’s possible that I didn’t even read about it and I just made up new contents that were more interesting than what actually happened in the book. So it’s possible that the Native Americans didn’t scalp anyone in A Light in the Forest OR in real life, and if they did, it might have only been certain tribes. I’m honestly pretty clueless here.

DISCLAIMER: It’s called horrible medical advice for a reason. Dr. Boyfriend advises against doing anything I said in this post except the part where you wear a viking helmet.