1. Five increasingly hardscrabble (and grotesque) truths.

Everything that sounds positive in the world of cosmetics becomes less hard for beauty brands to defend every year, and just as their sales falter, the prices of their products soar:

GIF: Thinkstock

Sometimes, though, the threat to beauty brands doesn't have anything to do with the sheer volume of demand. It's more that the category has become faddish, creating a climate that fosters the commoditization of what was once a luxury. Womenswear in particular has tended to play second fiddle to young millennials, who, according to a 2018 study by Boston Consulting Group, spend $173 billion a year on personal care and grooming products. Back in 2015, H&M, a traditional leader in jeans, sold out of straight leg jeans in six hours during a sample sale. It's hard to imagine that the major labels would have done the same with dresses.

2. Covid-19 is very good at protecting itself from the cold.

Here's a selection of Pinterest pinners' favorite everyday foods: eggs, butter, mac & cheese, cookies, and so on, which are hardly made with flour or milk. They're all based on either chickpea flour or gluten-free dyes.

But for those who want their eggs, butter, and cheese with fiber—yes, a little bit of wheat flour and soy protein—Covid-19 may be their solution. The powdered egg powder is made from wheat, wheat gluten, and soy and promises to deliver both protein and fiber. In theory, this hybrid can protect you against the ravages of hunger pangs, a classic concept. But grain-based health products are all the rage. The flavor-sweetened, sugar-free Glucerna Diet bars help stop the ageing process. (Glucerna is also in the food business—they make the powdered version. And they sell GNC Advantage points.) Oh, and in case you need a topical treatment, Glucerna has just launched low-dose, overnight lipolaser, a vitamin B5 patch for teeth whitening. They also sell a prostate-duct biopsy solution called Pro-Lactic for prostate enlargement.

But they really don't sell protein bars: Why the interest in food? The short answer is that consumption habits have changed. Millennial woman now eat out more, and they also spend more per meal on foods prepared at home.

3. For clever GIFs, do not rely on JIF.

Memes die hard, but they're also bad for the environment. Using the printers that make JIF—JiffyLites—has much higher environmental impact than printing on paper, which is recycled with far less care. JiffyLites use much more water to process soy-based glue than the use of paper and ink—no, they're not vegetarian—and they use far more energy.