I Tried the Frank Body Shimmer Scrub and It Did Not Turn Me Into Britney Spears
by Hollee Actman Becker
As a 47-year-old mom of two who has never been to Coachella, I’m pretty sure I’m not the target customer for the new limited edition Shimmer Scrub from Australian beauty brand Frank, which is basically being billed as a highlighter for your body.
Ok, fine. I’m definitely not the target audience. But I’ve been obsessed with body glitter since the late 90s when Britney and Christina rocked the shimmery stuff on TRL like it was their job — which I guess in a way, it was.
At the time, I was 20-something beauty editor living in New York, and glitter gel quickly became one of my party girl staples. I felt like such a badass whenever I wore it, and so I happily smeared it everywhere — in my hair, down my arms, on my shoulders, at the tops of my cheeks. One of my guy friends even once joked that I wore it so much it had become embedded in my skin.
There was just something that felt so magical about dousing myself in sparkle dust before leaving the apartment each night. I’m not saying it gave me secret powers or anything, but the ability to shine bright like a diamond while dancing to Biggie’s Mo’ Money Mo’ Problems always made me feel like it was all about to happen.
And busting out a glitter pot in the club bathroom was the best way to make instant friends with all the drunk girls waiting in line.
The best legal way, anyway.
The big drawback, of course, was that the stuff was a bitch to clean up. The twinkling pieces never really came up off the floor or washed fully out of the sheets. And I swear my tub had a permanent glitter ring around the drain. But it was a small price to pay for a body full of sparkles and the mystical jolt of confidence that came along with it.
And that is why, when I learned about the Frank Shimmer Scrub via a sponsored Instagram post a few months ago, I quickly clicked over to add my name to the waitlist, which was already 50,000 people long. Guess I wasn’t the only one nostalgic for the 90s.
If you haven’t heard about this stuff yet, allow me to get you up to speed. The Shimmer Scrub is a limited-edition exfoliator, made up of things like sugar, salt, ground coffee and mica. Which basically makes it the Red Bull of body buffers. And somehow, among people who care about such things, it’s managed to become the beauty score of the summer.
You can kind of understand, then, why I was ridiculously excited when the highly coveted concoction finally landed on my doorstep a few days ago, packaged in a cool, silvery, holographic pouch.
“Throw shimmer — not shade,” it cheekily announced. I hadn’t even used the stuff yet and I was already totally hooked.
The scrub is designed to be rubbed on in the shower, so I hopped in and tore open the package. Mad props to whoever Frank is, because while the gritty mixture looked like a wet glop of sand, it smelled like the most perfect mix of just-ground beans from your favorite indie coffee shop.
In other words, like heaven.
I scooped out a handful and massaged it into my skin. Right away, I noticed a nice little gleam on my arms. So I happily slathered the gunk on the rest of my bod, then rinsed the residue away with water, as directed, when I was finished.
I couldn’t wait to get out of the shower and admire my full-on glistening self in the mirror. But when I did, the results were kind of a bummer. Because while my skin was super-soft and smelled exactly like a venti soy latte hold the whip, I was far from disco ball fabulous.
Sure if I leaned in real close and tilted my arm just-so I could detect the faintest sheen. But there was certainly no major glow up happening here. And when I came downstairs for dinner in a tank top later, not a single person mistook me for Beyonce.
As it turns out though, I was kind of OK with that. While the scrub may not be the glitter bomb my 20s self once dreamed of, my skin felt more silky and hydrated than ever. And bonus points for the kickass coffee scent. Because while I haven’t rolled up to a club since the early aughts, I currently crave a rush of caffeine on the daily.
I’d be lying if I said my awesome pre-rinse shower shimmer hadn’t momentarily made me feel like B. Spears crushing it in her sparkly nude unitard at the 2000 VMAs. But that brief moment of rockstar status was all I needed to cruise through back-to-back school pickups like a boss.
So go ahead and hit me one more time, Frank. Because just like a certain former midriff-baring Mouseketeer, I’m convinced this pretty package is worthy of an encore.
Or at least a glitzy, four-year residency in Vegas.