I can’t BELIEVE I forgot to pack this!

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This might be the most ridiculous post I have ever written. It’s really the definition of first world problems, but since I’m an open book, I’m sharing anyways. You totally have my permission to laugh at me!

A few weeks ago, my family and I took a Caribbean cruise and had a blast.

We tend to take cruises over other types of vacations since we live close(ish, 5 hours away) to a port and they tend to be pretty reasonable, cost-wise.

Because you’re on a ship in the middle of the ocean, packing exactly what you need is important. When on land, I don’t stress too much over if I have everything. I know, for example, if I forget toothpaste or a comb I can find those things easily.

On the drive to the port, I was going over in my head everything that we definitely needed for the trip, especially the things that I wouldn’t be able to replace if we needed them. Cruise gift shops aren’t notorious for variety, and they certainly aren’t going to have anything that’s very specific or individualized.

Medications? Yep, I saw my husband pack his pills.

Son’s eczema cream? Yes, I packed it myself, although I could get by with regular lotion for a week if I needed to.

Got2B Spiking Gel for securing my topper [read my post about using glue on toppers!]? Check. Definitely a good alternative to clips on an active vaca, but clips alone are fine if necessary.

Joan Rivers Great Hair Day Powder? This is my definite must-have as it takes my topper from looking “dropped on my head” to looking perfectly blended – it’s the perfect way to blend your topper with your hair. I can literally see me packing my brush in my bag, so, got it!

Wig? Yep, I packed my Jon Renau Alessandra, just in case I wanted to have “nice hair” a few nights.

We got to port, boarded the ship, and began our vacation. Woohoo!

(The gal that offered to take this photo of us must’ve been an Instagram genius. She literally had my phone in her hand for about 2 seconds, but when I was reviewing the photo she took, I realized she took no less than 9 pics – all different orientations and some zoomed in, some not. Serious skills.)

I tend to wash my hair every second day, so by day two of vacation, it was ready for a wash.

I got all my hair stuff out: my hairdryer, hairbrush, Joan Rivers, and got down to business getting ready for the day.

I dug out my little Joan Rivers Great Hair day brush and was fishing for my the powder compact so that I could blend my topper with my own hair line…and, nothing.

It was nowhere to be found.

I checked the main pocket of my cosmetics bag. Then the back pocket.

My husband’s shaving bag (why it would be there, I don’t know).

Our suitcases.

My kids’ snack bag.

The darn mini fridge.

Wherever I could think of.

No. There is NO WAY that I forgot this product since it’s very close to the ONE product that I cannot LIVE without.

So dramatic, right?

While I remembered packing my brush since I used it the morning we left (that’s literally how I pack. I use it that morning, then place it in bag/suitcase), I apparently didn’t pack the actual product.

Since it’s SUCH a pigmented powder, you really don’t need to use the actual product in the compact every day. There’s usually enough left on the brush for a day or two.

This is part of the reason why I love this product – it lasts FOREVER.


While I had enough on my brush to blend my topper that day (phew!), it definitely wasn’t going to last me a week, especially since I hadn’t swiped the product in a few days.

While I could’ve just said “screw it” and planned on not blending as well as I’m used to for the rest of my vacation, I really wanted to come up with a solution. My hairline is just SO weak, so while I certainly wasn’t out to impress anyone on this vacation (so who cares, right?) it was more of a confidence/comfort thing.

The Joan Rivers product is what MAKES my hairline…I pulled this pic from my Instagram (come follow along!) to give you a closeup.

integrate topper with hair

The first stop was the on-board gift shop, since most ships have shops that have cosmetics and perfume. I knew they wouldn’t have my beloved Joan Rivers powder, but I was just looking for a brown eyeshadow.

Eyeshadow is not my favorite blending product. Many tend to have little sparkles in them, tend to be warm, and tend to not be very pigmented (especially drug store makeup).

I’d make do with it if I had to, so I went hunting for a single-shade eyeshadow (what’s $5 or $6?).

The shop, unfortunately, only sold multi-shade compacts for over $50. I was definitely NOT spending that. Plus, the brown shade was too light and definitely too sparkly.

I don’t need a glittery hairline. 🙂

So, the ship was out.

Next up I wondered if I could get some cheap eyeshadow at one of the ports.

I’ve been to the three ports we were visiting before, so I knew what to expect:

The first would not have anything.

The second might have a shop, but it would be a higher-end shop if they did.

The third stop held some promise, but it was at the end of our trip so why bother?

After much hemming and hawing (my poor, supportive husband), I decided to give up and not think about my hairline any more.

I was already being ridiculous with the whole thing, and I was just spending time at the pool/beach during the day anyways. If I wanted to look more polished at night, I could just wear my Jon Renau Alessandra wig.

It didn’t cross my mind for another day or two.

My kiddos kept seeing these little dragon puppets around the ship that other kids had so we popped into the gift shop to pick one out.

All of the shops are connected, so we passed through the cosmetics shop to get to the gift shop and lo and behold! Some new eyeshadow compacts were put out.


I was able to snag this L’Oreal compact (and two dragon puppets) for $22 (makeup only, the dragons were extra, duh).

And close up, sans dragons:

I proooooooobably spent at least double what I would’ve paid in the States, but the eyeshadow was matte, dark, and not warm!

So I went with it.

And it worked pretty well.

Now I have a note on my makeup case that I only use when I travel: “Do NOT forget Joan!”

We’ll see if that reminder works.

That’s my little hair-on-vacation story for you all. It’s a silly little tale, but there are definitely tiny nuances that crop up when you’re wearing hair that you’d NEVER consider with a normal head of hair.

But you all know that. 🙂

It’s fun to share these stories with you guys, because I know you’ll understand.

I hope you understand in some of my upcoming pics, too, that I need to get through $22 worth of eyeshadow, including a lovely yellow shade. I’ll be going all out!



Anyone else here swear by Joan Rivers Great Hair Day Powder for hairline blending? It’s also great for narrowing your own part line.

I’m thinking it’s time to stock up. It’s getting hard to find my color (Blonde) anywhere! I think, since Ms. Joan’s passing, that they may actually have slowed production, or stopped altogether. 🙁

37 thoughts on “I can’t BELIEVE I forgot to pack this!”

  1. Is that product comparable to hair fibers (toppik etc) – apart from the way you apply it – or is it something completely different? (But the same purpose?).. Since i’m not in the US i won’t be able to get hold of it anyway it seems (on local amazon they go for 100-200€) …

  2. Update on my email to JR: The email came back as undeliverable with the reason saying “The recipient server did not accept our requests to connect.” I clicked the email link for customer service inquiries on the site. The address came up as .co at the end so I thought maybe that was a mistake so I sent it again as .com. It came back too with the same reason. It took over a day for both to come back. So guess we will just have to wait and see.

  3. I am still smiling over your vacation story. It would have so rattled me. I can’t live without JR. I order from QVC (it’s the only thing I have ever ordered from them). It can not go away!!!!

  4. Lauren, looks like a wonderful vacation! thank you so much for your blog/website. You are amazing!
    I have two questions for you.
    1: what topper are you wearing in your profile pic? it seems to have more wave in it than top secret which I know is your everyday topper.
    2. do you have a video of how you blend your topper in with Joan rivers powder?
    thanks again for all you do.

      • Thanks!! Looking forward to the video. I have the top wave in 12in and love the fact that it’s light and has nice waves but I find it doesn’t sit well on my head. Some lift in the front and back of the head so I haven’t been comfortable wearing it in public. I have the top secret too which sits beautifully but it’s too heavy for me. In short nothing I am totally happy with so not wearing hair yet. i might have to try something else. Thanks again for your blog – you are so helpful!!

  5. I cannot live without Joan in Blonde with the brush too! It’s the Best. It doesn’t smear, run, come off on your hands or pillows! Amazing stuff!! Only washes out when you wash your hair. Covers grey on temples and any wide parts and little thinning spots. Makes hair look thicker! . I use it to conceal root growth! It’s a miracle product! RIP Joan Rivers. Thanks to Joan many lives have been changed by this product! Yaaaaaa!!

  6. Oh no, that would be stressful but a little funny once you figured it out. I am glad you walked back through the gift shop. I was on the fence about trying this, your post has now convinced me to give it a try. I found it on QVC and if it’s your first time ordering, you can get a $5 discount. All in, it was just over $29.

  7. I have a topper that I need to blend, so I used to use Joan Rivers GHD. But it drove me crazy because every time I used it extra bits of powder would flake out of the container and get all over my sink. And sometimes the powder flakes would leak out of the container when traveling, without even opening it.

    My hair is about the same color as Lauren’s, and I searched high and low for a single eyeshadow that was dark, matte, and not warm. I didn’t have any success so I eventually started looking at eyebrow powders since they are generally matte. I found that Kryolan eyebrow powder in “dark” works perfectly for me. I use the powder with an old JR GHD brush, and it sticks where I put it and doesn’t flake at all in the container. You can check out Kryolan in their online store, but their shipping is expensive so I buy it from Amazon.

  8. I keep reading reviews about how amazing JR hair powder is.
    I have bought it two times- in two shades. I have very dark hair.
    IT DOES NOT ADHERE TO THE WHITE SCALP- it seems it needs
    some hair to stick!
    and… after a bit it sort of morphs into teensy little black dots vs. smooth
    coverage. It is also hard to avoid a shoeshine look right at the part of front
    crown closest to eyebrows. I am pretty good with make up etc, but can’t
    get this to do what i need. Help! Thank, susan

    • Hi Susan…hmm…I’m stumped. I’ve only used the Blonde shade so wonder if anyone else that has tried a darker color can chime in? I have used it on bare scalp (so many tout it being great for covering up bald spots) with no issues. Let’s hope others have something to say about this!

  9. Joined! I didn’t realize there was a monthly option. How do I communicate with you? Through the forums? I have a few specific questions concerning a decision I need to make now. Thanks! Super excited…

  10. Did you notice they raised the price? When I first bought it, it wasn’t that high. Then for several years I bought it from a discount makeup catalog for $8.00. Now I see it for $28.00. I wonder if a different company tool over manufacturing. Anywho…..I uae a combination of Joan, Toppik, and Dermmatch. I am trying to buy anirher loose powder I had some years ago made by a woman named Bonnie. I don’t remember the product name (anyine know?). I have to use oodles of powder as I can’t find a topper to match my curl pattern, length and color. And time is running out. The powders just aren’t enough anymore. Still looking for a long, 3c curly topper in dark brown .

  11. OK, nervous here. I didn’t know a blender would be necessary. I am on the verge of purchasing my first topper (thanks, in part, to you!). The color is close but definitely different. I am told that the stylist who cuts it to my face can “pull a few strands” into the bangs, and I’ll never notice. Is this true? It’s not the color closest to my hair color but even that one is not exact. And, with a few gray strands appearing, it might be time to color my hair anyway. But even that would probably not be exact. Say Lauren, I have a great idea for you. How about a one time consultation service for those of us who aren’t sure we’re ready to dive into a full year subscription? The piece is beautiful…and expensive, so I just want to make sure I get this right! Loved the post by the way although I imagine I would be totally oblivious to your hairline if I was sharing the ship with you. We are our own worst critics!

    • Yes, I am positive no one would’ve noticed – you’re absolutely right! It’s funny, even though I intellectually know that I can still convince myself otherwise, and I wanted to be present on vacation and not wrapped up in my thoughts, you know?

      As for needing something to blend, you might not need something. My loss is more on the advanced side…but for the first half of my hair-wearing journey, I didn’t use a thing! But, now, I need it.

      We don’t just have Annual memberships – we do monthly, too, if you wanted to just check it out and get some advice and recommendations.

      I have a few grays as well…I think they look like highlights. 🙂 Ha, maybe I am kidding myself. But each strand is too precious to pluck out and I’m adverse to coloring (at least, right now…I’m sure someday!).

  12. Omg, Lauren this would have been me! I totally relate! It is so tough getting back to work after the holidays. Glad you enjoyed your vacay. I had some time off too and it was great. On the other note, what is going on with JR in Blonde?! I just bought a new package about a month ago and all of a sudden like you said, nada, anywhere. This is a crisis. It is THE one product I must have. I’m going to send an email to the company to inquire. I will let you all know.

  13. Oh, I hope they’re not discontinuing the Joan Rivers powder! I haven’t even made a dent in my compact, but it works so much better than eyeshadow that I’d be heartbroken to be without it. I may have to order a backup now, just in case.

  14. Glad you found a solution! That’s just something that would happen to me!
    Could you please explain how you use that product on your hairline? My hairline is awful so I just tend to pull my topper all the way forward. If someone were looking carefully at my hair, It just doesn’t look great 🙁
    Looks like you had a great vacation!

    • The product is ah-mazing. You can apply some to your hairline and blend it out towards the rest of your hair. It create either a diffuse “shadowing”, or you can apply it a bit heavier and get some really great coverage. I have this on my list of videos to do! Highly recommend–as you can tell–this product!


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