I like to call Bath & Body Works Art Stuff collection the no-fail birthday present of the ‘90s. Someplace, somewhere a tween girl was ripping open a multicolored paper gift bag and exclaiming over the bright purple shower gel and neon roll-on body glitter stick that was gloriously now in her possession. I can vouch for this experience first hand. Perhaps the first sign I’d eventually end up in a beauty career was just how thrilled I was with my ever-growing collection of fruity scented body mists and swirly Cosmic Cool body lotion.
Why a nine-year-old needs a large compilation of body mists, I will never know, but speaking as my former nine-year-old self, it was essential. Maybe Art Stuff really did play an integral role in the development of my beauty preferences. I know that’s a serious statement to make over products that smelled like sugar and some gummy worms and candy mixed together in a bowl and were decorated with fruit and stars, but hear me out.
I didn’t know how to do my hair, sans a braid and a center part, and makeup wasn’t even an option yet, not because my mom didn’t let me or anything, but I wouldn’t have even thought to swipe on mascara. Putting on lip balm was considered “getting glam.” But body products?
Oh, those I could handle, mostly because there’s zero technique other than rubbing it in or showering. I’m still to this day admittedly obsessive about moisturizing my arms and legs, and maybe it’s because I had a full stock of glitter lotions at my disposal.
The roll-on body glitters were perfect for accenting your shoulders or arms while wearing a halter top. Of course, if you weren’t in a rush, you could spritz on some glittery gel Body Splash, which was essentially body glitter in a spray bottle that looked like Windex for parties. Cherry, blueberry, watermelon, I had them all.
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To this day, I still have to fight off the urge to go to town with shimmery body lotions and self-tanner. And while now I enjoy more musky or spicy scents over those that smell like the inside of a Pez dispenser, I still wish I had my funky-shaped Art Stuff line on my vanity. Body care products can be considered vintage too, right?