Am I Getting Old, Or Is Home Shopping Cool Now?

When I was growing up we always had cable, but for some reason my sister and I passed many hours watching The Home Shopping Network. In the '80s, it was called the Home Shopping Club. It boasted a wealth of porcelain dolls and gaudy jewelry, and shoppers were encouraged to order via the automated system dubbed "Tootie" and personified in the form of a bicycle horn (I would think I had made up Tootie if not for sparse references to her on the web).

Over the years our interest in porcelain dolls waned, but we would still turn on the Home Shopping Network to laugh at Suzanne Somers's diet products or the not-so-subtle makeovers administered to women of a certain age by Adrienne of Signature Club A. At that point I was in my teens, and I would never consider ordering from HSN.

Then at some point (probably around the time Suzanne got the boot) HSN kind of fell off my radar. I knew that the website was gaining traction, I knew (thanks to my boyfriend's grandmother) that they were selling Tony Little-branded butt-shaping sneakers, but I was not watching the channel with any regularity. I assumed they were still dealing mostly in hideous statement jewelry and dated makeup.

I still didn't think much of HSN's offerings when I started seeing coupon codes popping up on Reddit's MakupeAddiction. So what if they sold a few cool makeup items? I was not going to be swayed to cement my old-ladyness by giving money to Tootie and her minions. I held onto this view until my mother asked me to get her a nice, neutral eyeshadow palette. I chose the Too Faced Natural Matte Palette, but I refused to pay full price, and the best deal I could find was $20 off $40 at HSN.com.

HSN doesn't just have a few makeup items now: they sell products from Benefit, Too Faced, Smashbox, Becca, and more. Yes, you can still buy Signature Club A there, but you can also buy the ridiculously popular Becca Shimmering Skin Perfector or Benefit They're Real! Mascara (they'll even autoship the mascara). Plus HSN doesn't charge nonsensical shipping and handling fees like QVC (another retailer from which I have certainly never purchased) does.

So has HSN gotten way more hip over the years, or have I just gotten way more unhip?