Another Sign That The End Times Are Nigh

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As a reporter, I get all manner of odd press releases, but one from J9 Public Relations startled me. J9 is flacking a new line of Christian body and bath care products by Trinity Cosmetics.

My first reaction was this has to be another internet hoax, perhaps as an homage to the scene in Woody Allen's Bananas in which a priest hawking New Testament cigarettes says, "Stick to New Testament cigarettes and all is forgiven. New Testament cigarettes. l smoke 'em. He smokes 'em."

But it seems it is not a hoax. The Trinity Cosmetics press release earnestly asked:

How can America's young people infuse religion into their daily routines? A Maryland-based company, Trinity Cosmetics, may have stumbled upon a trend we can expect to see and hear more about: a return to religion.

Trinity Cosmetics is a divinely inspired bath and body collection that features inspiring passages and proverbs from the Bible on each and every product in their collection

Among other divinely inspired products offered by Trinity Cosmetics are "Palm Sundae Hand Revival Treatment," Sole Saver Foot Revival Treatment," "Milk and Honey Comforting Bubble Bath," and "Salt of the Earth Seasoning Body Cream."

To lend the proper air of piety to moisturizing, various Bible verses are printed on the bubble bath and revival treatments, such as, "Though I walk in the midst of trouble, You will revive me." (Ps 138:7) and "You are the salt of the earth." (Matthew 5:13).

However, one bible verse you will not likley find on Trinity Cosmetic products is 1 Peter 3: 3-4: "Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as braided hair and the wearing of gold jewelry and fine clothes. Instead, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God's sight."

If I were a believer, I would try to avoid standing too close to Trinity's founders, Zachary and Stacey Adams.

For more of Reason's take on Christian commerce, see Jeremy Lott's excellent 2003 article, "Jesus Sells: What the Christian culture industry tells us about secular society."

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  1. Didn’t Dr. Bronner beat them to the wacky religious soap several decades ago?

  2. No one ever went broke…

  3. Don’t forget about the bible bar
    http://www.logia.net/

  4. I have nothing but praise for these entrepreneurs. If they found a niche market to make money, more power to ’em. Same with the bottled-water-for-dogs people. Hurray for individual lifestyle choices (even if they seem goofy!)

  5. Hmmmm..makes me want to buy a tin of Testamints.

  6. linguist: Of course it’s OK. Praise the Lord and rake in the dough!

  7. However, one bible verse you will not likley find on Trinity Cosmetic products is 1 Peter 3: 3-4:

    Yeah, that verse is way too long to fit on a bar of soap. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  8. My former advisor said that his wife wants to make a snack food called “Jeezits” instead of “Cheezits”. She figures it will sell well among evangelicals who want a way to praise God while consuming cheese-flavored carbohydrate snacks.

  9. My former advisor said that his wife wants to make a snack food called “Jeezits” instead of “Cheezits”. She figures it will sell well among evangelicals who want a way to praise God while consuming cheese-flavored carbohydrate snacks.

    As an agnostic/atheist, I couldn’t write better blasphemy myself! A comedy golmine.

  10. Flocks are meant to be sheared.

  11. Now we need a company producing fundamentalist Muslim string bikinis.

  12. Has anyone marketed a self-thumping bible yet?

  13. Dear Women, do you want to show off your body to non-related men while remaining true to the principles of Sharia? Then buy our new burkini! It lets you expose yourself while remaining true to the religious principle of “don’t expose yourself,” and it’s only thrice as expensive as secular infidel bathing suits!

  14. Anyone who’s seen the marketing ploys used to sell “Earth-Friendly” consumer products to guilty upper-class environmentalists shouldn’t be surprised by any of this.

  15. Captain Holly-That’s it! Christian Organic Free Range Fair Trade Coffee! We’ll slap a big ol’ Jeebus on the front of it and a bible verse on the back. Jeebus will be leading a burro and look suspicously like Juan Valdez.
    Slogan: Have a cuppa Joe with JC!

  16. Damn, Number 6, why aren’t you in sales? You have a gift, man!

  17. Anyone who’s seen the marketing ploys used to sell “Earth-Friendly” consumer products to guilty upper-class environmentalists shouldn’t be surprised by any of this.

    But spending five times as much as you have to in order to buy something “earth friendly” doesn’t contain an implicit contradiction in terms. But cosmetics that are supposed to remain true to the principles of the religion that introduced the phrase “painted Jezebel” into our language?

    What next? Extra-caffeinated coffee for devout Mormons? Psychoactive drugs true to the principles of Scientology? Faith healing for atheists?

  18. What kinds of thing could I market to people who live their lives specifically to not give a shit?

  19. Now we need a company producing fundamentalist Muslim string bikinis.

    Great idea! Let’s do it, Jennifer! Actually, didn’t I just see something about male/female segregated beaches in the Middle East, where women take off their robes and do wear string bikinis? Hah! http://www.beliefnet.com/story/105/story_10568_1.html

    So there is a niche market!

  20. Faith healing for atheists?

    Have you embraced Ayn Rand as your personal lord and savior?

    ๐Ÿ™‚

  21. What kinds of thing could I market to people who live their lives specifically to not give a shit?

    How about a libertarian blog where commenters go out of their way to post comments like “I don’t care?”

  22. But spending five times as much as you have to in order to buy something “earth friendly” doesn’t contain an implicit contradiction in terms. But cosmetics that are supposed to remain true to the principles of the religion that introduced the phrase “painted Jezebel” into our language?

    I have to disagree with the idea that use of soap, shampoo, and moisturizing cream per se is against Christian principles. Even the scripture Ron quoted above says noting about cosmetics; rather, it condemns expensive, gaudy clothing and jewelry.

    In other words, keeping your body clean isn’t a sin, dressing like a haughty slut is.

    But this story kind of confirms my belief that modern Environmentalism is more religion than science. In both cases, the “true believers” hope to completely purge their lives of the influence of Babylon by purchasing products that are somehow more “pure” than others. The environmentalist equivalent would be soaps, shampoos, and lotions that were made with only “organic” materials.

  23. Have you embraced Ayn Rand as your personal lord and savior?

    Heh. “What would Ayn do?”

  24. “What would Ayn do?”

    Write a book whose heroine is a wealthy heiress in order to demonstrate the beauty of a system that rewards personal hard work?

  25. Linguist-I’m not an objectivist, but I would absolutely wear a “WWJGD?” bracelet.

  26. What kinds of thing could I market to people who live their lives specifically to not give a shit?

    M’Tuklavier,

    How about this?

  27. This is right out of Heinlein’s _Stranger in a Strange Land_ The Fosterite christian cult in that novel had their own brands of everything.

  28. Jennifer, 6, and smacky: LOL

  29. But this story kind of confirms my belief that modern Environmentalism is more religion than science. In both cases, the “true believers” hope to completely purge their lives of the influence of Babylon by purchasing products that are somehow more “pure” than others. The environmentalist equivalent would be soaps, shampoos, and lotions that were made with only “organic” materials.

    Comment by: Captain Holly at March 22, 2006 11:56 AM

    Environmentalism isn’t a science at all, it’s a social political movement advocating reduction of anthropocentric environmental impacts.

    The movement relies largely on data garnered from environmental science/ earth science and ecology, which are sciences.

  30. “Hmmmm..makes me want to buy a tin of Testamints.”

    Thanks all the same, but I’ll stick with condomints.

  31. linguist – I read some of that thread about what a muslim should wear to the beach, and, well, I am truely sorry for people who follow that religion.

    I’m sorry, I don’t mean to be rude to those who have faith, but are you fucking kidding me? Some woman was crying about how disgusting and degrading it is to let someone see your body (except her husband, of course). Um, it’s disgusting and degrading for you to not be pleased with yourself as a human and to do whatever the hell you want to do, as long as it doesn’t infringe on another’s freedom.

    (Apologies to any muslims who aren’t quite so fanatical. I admit I haven’t read the Koran, so I don’t know much about Islam, but some of the comments on that msg board were mind-boggling.)

  32. My former advisor said that his wife wants to make a snack food called “Jeezits” instead of “Cheezits”.

    When I was in highschool I purchased a t-shirt with a parody of Wheaties cereal called “Hosties”. It depicted Jesus on the front and the tagline read, “Crispy, crunchy Communion treats” or something like that. Unfortunately, I never found the right opportunity to wear it. My high school was surprisingly (unsurprisingly?) Puritan for a public school, and I was afraid someone might kick my head in for wearing it. I still have the unworn shirt somewhere. It wouldn’t really fit my style these days, though.

  33. Jennifer,
    Who did that? Wait…I dont’ care who it was.

    smacky,
    I certainly appreciate that but it doesn’t go low enough. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    I need a business loan to start up but I’m afraid this won’t work because my customers just won’t care enough to buy what I’m selling.

  34. I want my Christ Chex!

  35. Or smoke a pack of Testikools.

  36. Lowdog: I once spent a week in the “Islamic Beach Paradise” aka, the Maldive Islands in the Indian Ocean (the best snorkeling ever). While there I saw many Muslim women “swimming” in full black chadors.

  37. Lowdog–I read that board too. What really horrified me was the poster who said that she bought her daughter a wetsuit and goes to a “quiet cove” where nobody else is around in order to swim. Great! Allah wants you to make your daughter swim in unfamiliar waters with no lifeguards around! It’s like that case a few years ago where a Saudi school caught fire and the girls burned to death because the religious police wouldn’t let their uncovered selves out–death is preferable to letting someone other than your husband see any part of your body other than your fingertips.

    What a bunch of sick fucks they are.

  38. Ron – oh, that doesn’t surprise me, although it still makes me a little upset. Still, I think I’d enjoy a nice vacation to the Maldives. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Jennifer – yes, I obviously agree. Although fundie christians who won’t let their children see a doctor are sick fucks, too, to be fair. ๐Ÿ™‚

  39. Jennifer – yes, I obviously agree. Although fundie christians who won’t let their children see a doctor are sick fucks, too, to be fair. ๐Ÿ™‚

    True dat. But to heap even more fairness onto this big steaming pile we’re building, fundie Christians who oppose doctors are the extreme minority, not the standard holy status quo.

    Me, I have a low opinion of a god who’d create a species whose only means of procreation is evil and filthy and sick.

  40. My former advisor said that his wife wants to make a snack food called “Jeezits” instead of “Cheezits”.

    Cheeses of Nazareth, anyone?

  41. What Would Cheesus Do?

  42. Me, I have a low opinion of a god who’d create a species whose only means of procreation is evil and filthy and sick.

    Speak for yourself…mmmmkay?

  43. Speak for yourself…mmmmkay?

    Learn what “context” means when reading, mmmkay?

  44. Jennifer – right you are on the minority of xians being sick fucks.

    And seriously, when I read about Adam and Eve eating from the tree of knowledge, I’m like “Fuck yeah, now you guys actually have some self-awareness. That venegful prick, god, just doesn’t want you realise what a sham he’s running.” I’d tell god he can stuff his entire garden where the sun don’t shine.

    I’m a fairly modest person, and I don’t run around without clothes on very often, but I also appreciate the human body, definitely females, but even a man who has a good physique is impressive and one of the reasons why I like sports…the pinnicle of human conditioning/physique is very neat to me.

    As to your comments on having a low impression of god – that’s just one reason…most of those religious texts are full of them, but of course, we both know we’re in agreement there! ๐Ÿ™‚

  45. Blessed are the cheesemakers.

  46. Are that sensitive about some teasing? Fine. I’m just here to water down the blogs anyway.

  47. M’Tuklavier,

    If you think Jennifer is being too sensitive than maybe you should try selling her one of those nifty meters I suggested you market.

  48. As to your comments on having a low impression of god – that’s just one reason…most of those religious texts are full of them, but of course, we both know we’re in agreement there! ๐Ÿ™‚

    I just wonder why these jackasses don’t apply even the simplest standards of logic to their gods. Take the whole hijab nonsense, for example; according to Marjane Satrapi in her book Persepolis (about the Iranian revolution), the rationale behind forcing women to keep their hair covered in public is that “women’s hair emanates rays that drive men to uncontrollable sexual excitement.” Well, crap! Why the hell should anybody worship a god vile enough to make all women’s heads sprout evil anti-thought rays? Why wouldn’t this god have just made women bald?

    For that matter, if god only wants women to be housekeepers and baby-incubators, what vile sadism led him to give women actual brains? For that matter, why create women at all? Let men reproduce on their own by laying eggs or something.

    The Abrahamic god reminds me of a psychotic mother in FLorida who puts wool sweaters on her kids in July, sends them outside to play and then punishes them if they dare to perspire.

  49. “My former advisor said that his wife wants to make a snack food called “Jeezits” instead of “Cheezits”.”

    sadly, that name was already taken for a condiment a friend of mine invented: cheese whiz on an unblessed host.

  50. M’Tuklavier, if that was meant as a joke then I apologize.

  51. Smacky,

    Could be that I need the meter. I don’t know. I don’t even have a prototype, just your concept. I’m not sure how a meter would change someones feelings if they didn’t care anyway. It would peg a…ahh who cares?

    Something to dispense Benzos in reposnse to heightened ephinephrine levels might work but that’s mostly for the ones who DO give a shit and would like not to.

  52. Jennifer,

    Re: your 2:27pm post, I’ve realized now that the world would be a much better place if people would stop lying to themselves so much. Lying to yourself is as wrong as lying to others because it has just as much ability to do a lot of harm. When people are taught to loathe their natural desires and their own bodies, they are creating unnecessary strife for themselves and for others. (That said, I still believe there are positive things to be said for modesty and respect for others, but that’s a tangent…).

  53. T’sallright

  54. I just found a split end. Does this reduce the amount of sex-rays my hair emanates, or does it increase the sex-rays due to greater area of hair space exposed to the air?

  55. No matter–I just cut it off.

  56. My former advisor said that his wife wants to make a snack food called “Jeezits” instead of “Cheezits”.

    I think you may run into copyright issues with this one. A stand up comedian named Dane Cook used this name in a routine refering to the communion wafer as a “Jeezit” and the “Crouton O’ Christ”. He also refered to the bowl of wafers as “Christ Chex”.

    “Start your day the Holy way with Christ Chex.”

  57. Back in the L.A. late 60s/early 70s born-again Christian scene I grew up in, you couldn’t find anyone who wasn’t either distributing Shaklee products or using them.

  58. So I assume a Jeezit would look exactly like a Goldfish.

  59. I still believe there are positive things to be said for modesty and respect for others, but that’s a tangent…).

    But even modesty is a wholly artificial construct. A businesswoman these days can wear an above-the-knee skirt and be considered modest, but a hundred years ago she’d’ve been arrested for the obscenity of showing her knees in public. I’ll admit I’m sometimes shocked when I see the very skimpy outfits some kids wear these days, but if kids continue wearing them long enough they too will be considered modest. Maybe a hundred years from now even sexually repressed women will wear respectable, modest Paris Hilton outfits to church and Junior League meetings. (I, of course, plan to be dead by then.)

    Maybe Saudi guys really do go lust-nutty when they see a woman’s naked hair, but American men don’t because they’re used to it. If these overly repressed fools stopped making such a big freaking deal over the human body, they’d realize that really, it’s not such a big freaking deal.

  60. While we are on the topic of body covering for religious zealots, let’s talk about Wholesome Wear.

    Where there’s a product there’s a market. Just this market is in this country, not the Arabian Peninsula and is for Christians not Moslems. Makes ‘Bikini Summer’ a bit of a downer in my opinion.

  61. Environmentalism isn’t a science at all, it’s a social political movement advocating reduction of anthropocentric environmental impacts.

    In a general sense, that’s correct. Or more accurately, that’s what it used to be.

    The movement relies largely on data garnered from environmental science/ earth science and ecology, which are sciences.

    Hardly. As an environmental scientist, I’ve found that many environmentalists are as superstitious and dogmatic as some religious fundamentalists. The fact that there might be a thin scientific justification for their beliefs doesn’t mean those beliefs are scientific or rational.

    Pesticides are a perfect example. To an environmentalist, any detectible pesticide residue in food is cause for alarm. They don’t differentiate between organochlorines, carbamates, organophosphates, or pyrethroids. Nor do they consider what the amount present in the food. To them, all pesticides are bad; they must be eliminated.

    That’s why I contend their desire for organic food is based on philosophy, not science. It’s a way for them to “purify” themselves by rejecting food that has been contaminated by the Evil Corporate World; a kind of Eco-Kosher that allows them to distinguish themselves from the non-believers.

  62. Jennifer – really what you’re saying, and I’m agreeing with, is get out of the middle fucking ages. (Yes, I realise not all arabs or muslims are stuck in the middle ages, but if you’re debating whether it’s ok to wear a fucking swimming suit to the goddamn beach, you’re stuck in the middle ages.)

    Kwix – notice how they don’t actually show anyone swimming in those swimming suits? Because it would look fucking ridiculous.

  63. Captain Holly,
    As a gardener and consumer of “organic” foods, what you say is correct to a point. I have little qualms about consuming most pesticide treated foods because they are topical in nature and wash off relatively easily. What I take issue with is the indiscriminate application that both pesticides and quick release (phosphate based) fertilizers are subject to. I see no reason to use pesticides or phosphate based fertilizers when organic pest managment and soil amendments work just as well if not better.

    To say that my choice is based on a ‘philosophy’ does not make it a bad choice, particularly when there is scientific basis to back it up. Beats some of the even sillier things I have seen done in the name of ‘philosophy’ like sacraficing virgins to volcanoes to appease a ‘god’, covering your head in piousness while praying or claiming that a zygote that can’t breath or think on it’s own is a living being. Besides, I would rather my coffee grounds and melon rinds go back to making more yummy food than into a landfill to be topped by a baseball diamond, even to the detriment of a future Barry Bonds.

  64. I see no reason to use pesticides or phosphate based fertilizers when organic pest managment and soil amendments work just as well if not better.

    Kind of like the rhythm method of birth control works just as well or better than the pill? That may be true, but one has to jump through a lot more hoops and get things exactly right for it to be so.

  65. It looks like you’d totally sink in those “swim suits”. Your profile would also look a lot more like a sea lion so always look on the bright side.

    The name of one: “Colotte Swimmer” is rather similar to Culote, so it sound to me like the “Large Ass Swimmer”.

  66. Capt. Holly, regardless of the merits of environmentalism and the use or misuse of science by its adherents, it is not itself, and never was, a scientific discipline

  67. Love, love, LOVE smacky’s link to the “meter.”

    Me, I have a low opinion of a god who’d create a species whose only means of procreation is evil and filthy and sick.

    But that’s what’s so great about it!

  68. Sheesh! Has anyone ever read Ken MacCleod’s “The Star Fraction?” In it there is a futuristic fundamentalist enclave where a one of the primary business deals in Christian-friendly products: Creationist astronomy programs, “Modesty” brand feminine Attire (i.e. the Christian equivalent of the Burqa), and the usual Bibles, tracts, and music.

    I don’t think we’re that far away anymore.

  69. Eco-Kosher that allows them to distinguish themselves from the non-believers.

    That strikes me as an escelllent characterization , Captain Holly.

    “Eco-Kosher”. I may have to steal that.

  70. “escelllent” should be “eXceLLent, dammit.

  71. It’s probably a little late in the thread to be mentioning this (this thread has already joined the archives along with its fellow departed breathren), but I just remembered that a while ago one of my friends came up with, “Christ Crispies”. Heh. Christ Crispies.

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