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November 17, 2021
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Quote of the Day

Quote of the Day

“They have no flavor and no nutritional value” – An article on why people should remove the sticker on fruits and vegetables. This shouldn’t be a sticky topic.

Equality for Athletes

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The Story

The International Olympic Committee is hitting refresh

What’s this about?

The IOC's guidance on transgender and intersex athletes. Back in 2003, the IOC allowed transgender athletes to compete only if...they'd undergone gender reassignment surgery and at least two years of hormone therapy. Over a decade later, the committee scrapped the surgery requirement but set testosterone limits for athletes who compete in women's sports. Now, the IOC's saying 'maybe we should update that' – three months after the first openly transgender athletes participated in the games (hi, Laurel Hubbard and Quinn). The IOC consulted with athletes, sports orgs, and medical and human rights experts to draft a six-page document to support fairness and inclusion for trans and intersex athletes.

What are the guidelines? 

10 principles. Instead of setting the same rules all around, the IOC's recommending a more DIY approach. It's letting each sport’s governing body develop its own eligibility criteria for trans and intersex athletes. But it did share a few guidelines based on "internationally recognized human rights," including: using evidence to determine if an athlete is ineligible or has an unfair advantage. And avoiding unnecessary medical testing or invasive exams. The recs are not legally binding. And could roll out for the next Summer Games.

What are people saying?

The IOC says every person has the right to participate in sports "without discrimination." But admitted it hadn't found the perfect solution yet. Athletes are already weighing in. ​​Quinn called the new guidelines “groundbreaking.” But Chelsea Wolfe – a trans BMX Freestyle rider – said “they fall short of a guarantee that discrimination” won’t be allowed. Especially after some transgender and intersex athletes were disqualified from participating in the most recent Olympics because of their testosterone levels. The IOC’s move comes as over 30 states have proposed or passed laws limiting transgender athletes from participating in certain sports teams.


Athletes have been excluded and targeted for pursuing their dreams while trans or intersex. The IOC’s guidelines marks an acknowledgment of the challenges they face – but by punting the issue to others, some say they’re leaving a lot on the court.

PS: Let's talk about what stigma and sports have to do with the LGBTQ+ community's mental health.

And Also...This

Who's giving away a blueprint...

Pfizer. Yesterday, the drugmaker said it’ll allow 95 developing countries to make and sell generic versions of its experimental COVID-19 pill. Paxlovid – which has yet to get FDA authorization has shown to cut the risk of hospitalization or death by nearly 90% among high-risk adults. It could be a game-changer. Especially, since the global vaccine rollout hasn't been equitable. And the majority of current COVID-19 treatments require an IV or injection. Now, more than half of the world’s population – including those in Africa and Asia – may have access to antiviral pills within months. 

  • Hold the applause: The UN called Pfizer’s move “significant.” But Doctors Without Borders said it was “disheartened” that countries like Russia and Brazil – which are battling major outbreaks – aren't included. Meanwhile...

What people are still reeling from…

Astroworld. Harris County has confirmed it will not be launching an independent probe into the deadly Travis Scott concert earlier this month. This week, the death toll from the Texas concert rose to 10 after a 9-year-old boy, Ezra Blount, died from his injuries after a massive crowd surge. Hundreds were injured. There are multiple lawsuits and investigations underway to figure out what happened and who's liable. But the spotlight has also been on the Houston police itself, which was involved in crowd control. Some also called for an independent investigation amid reports that Scott has personal ties to the Houston police chief. Now, Harris County's said 'nope, no independent investigation needed.' And that it will handle things internally.

PS: We get into what happened at Astroworld and whether Travis Scott is to blame in our latest ep of “Pop Cultured.”

Who can’t stop adding to cart…

Americans. Yesterday, the Commerce Dept said consumer spending went up 1.7% last month. Even though the US is seeing its highest surge in inflation in 31 years. (Inflation denial, much?) A boost in hiring, pay raises, and savings are helping Americans shop ‘til they drop and substitute at-home cooking with dining out. The crystal ball (aka experts) says the holiday shopping season’s about to have a merry year. 

Psst…want more $$$ news? Sign up for our Skimm Money newsletter to get the week’s top financial headlines and tips in your inbox every Friday.

While the hunt for ghosts continues…

Things will be getting magical at Hogwarts. And frisky with Joe Exotic.

Who's got the strongest selfie game in Latin America...

Frida Kahlo

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Design: theSkimm | Photo: Panera

Say Yes to Yum

Time for a tough truth: Thanksgiving’s great...but it’s also a lot of work. So if you see tons of kitchen time in your future, we think you should let someone else feed you for the next few days. Someone like Panera. Their mouthwatering meals are made fast. With fresh ingredients. We’d rec their…

Did we mention delivery only costs $1? ‘Cause it does.

Skincare Steal

ICYMI, masks continue to be the hottest accessory around. And while numerous studies show they’re effective at preventing the spread of germs, you miiiight wanna check in on your skincare routine if you’re wearing them on the reg.

Enter: the Peter Thomas Roth 24k Gold, Cucumber, and Rose Mask Trio. Applying one of these powerful masks (yep...the other kind) two to three times a week intensely hydrates skin. And helps it stay healthy. Btw, you can save over $60 when you shop the trio at QVC before December 2. Aaaand that’s what we call a skincare steal.

Skimm Well

There’s been some misinformation out there when it comes to the COVID-19 vaccine and being pregnant. So let’s clear it up.

There is no data — we repeat, no data — to support that the vaccine causes infertility. That’s a myth. And actually, a number of reproductive health societies recommend the COVID-19 shot as the best option for pregnant people and their babies, at any trimester. We asked a fertility doctor (who got vaccinated when she was pregnant last year) a lot of the follow-up Qs that might be racing through your mind. Read our interview here.

Skimm Picks

Here are today’s recs to help you live a smarter life…

1. Responsibly made products from your fave eco-luxe brand. BRB, making room in our cart. Avocado Mattress just launched a collection of fashion and beauty products with the same sustainable, do-good mission as their sleep stuff. Think: Mother Earth-approved loungewear, basics, and body oils. Yes, please.*

2. How to plan for your financial future. Without feeling like you’re planning for your financial future. Enter: Prudential. They’ve got over 90 years of experience helping people invest, insure, retire, and plan their next chapter. Learn more.*

3. How to save up to $2K on your next flight. When you’re travel-ready, this club can help you score incredible deals. Think: round trip to Paris from $275. Or Park City from $111. Plus, Skimm’rs can join for just $1 before midnight. Go, go, go.*

4. Buttery-soft bags to compliment your winter wardrobe. Madewell’s totes, shoulder bags and crossbodies come in (virtually) every size. And are personalization-ready. With an emphasis on pockets that we’re especially grateful for. Oh, and Skimm’rs get $25 off their $150+ purchase with code SKIMM25.*

5. Appliances that make laundry day less, well, laundry day-y. And that much more efficient. These LG washers and dryers from Best Buy have top-notch tech and sleek designs. Psst...they’re also on sale right now. Add to cart.*

6. A serious sex toy sale. Ring the alarm. From Nov 19 to 29, everything at Dame Products is 20% off. So say ‘how you doin’?’ to powerful vibrators, organic lube, and more. That were all designed by women to close the pleasure gap, btw. Start shopping.*

*PS: This is a sponsored post.

PPS: Check out our selection of the best holiday gifts for everyone on your list.


We like to celebrate the wins, big and small. Let us know how your friends, neighbors, coworkers (and yes, even you) are making career moves, checking off goals, or making an impact in the community.

A real FYP...Andrea H (MT). She started designing and writing low-content books and selling them on Amazon. Her fave book is a 120 day self-exploration journal for those suffering from chronic illness. Check it out.

Leading the way...Anneliese K (AL). She joined the ranks of blind health care providers as an Associate Licensed Counselor in her state. And hopes to set an example that inspires other blind and visually impaired people to consider health care careers. Learn more

(Some) Birthdays...Patricia Climaco (CA), Gina Finizio (PA), Sarah Finn (NY), theSkimm's Saba Ahmed (NY), Nick and Steve Towler (NY), Allison Glasgow (RI), Jessica Patterson (OH), Marina Oros (CA), Courtney Dziadul (GA), Molly McDonnell (IL), Kate McCulloch (PA), Howard Dean (NY), Zoe Makowsky (NJ), Karyn Bennett (PA), Windy Silver (SC), Gina Finizio (PA), Sarah Finn (NY), Lindsay Kane (NY), Jackie O'Shaughnessy (NC), Heather Modicut (LA), Heather McCowen (IL), Sokphal Tun (VA), Beth Zentmeyer-Harvey (FL), Laurie Crane (GA), Shayla Castrelos (NJ), Teresa Decker (IA), Allie Sauls (TX), Catherine Kenney (VA), Brittany Haaland (TX), Talmage Payne (NC)

*Paging all members of theSkimm. Reach out here for a chance to be featured.

Skimm More

‘Tis the season...to be busy with holiday festivities. From Thanksgiving (and Thanksgiving football) and Black Friday, to Hanukkah and the Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree Lighting, there’s a lot going down in the final weeks of 2021. Download theSkimm App to get notified about upcoming celebrations, giving opportunities (hi, Giving Tuesday), and major shopping dates.

And if you’re looking for other smart ways to spend your time...

Skimm’d by Rashaan Ayesh, Maria del Carmen Corpus, Mariza Smajlaj, Clem Robineau, and Julie Shain

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