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Cristen Conger
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Cristen is a staff writer for HowStuffWorks.com and a contributing writer for Discovery News. She also co-hosts a biweekly podcast, Stuff Mom Never Told You, which was nominated for Best of iTunes 2009 and attempts to answer all of the pesky questions about women and men that no one thinks to answer or is too embarrassed to ask.

Entries by Cristen Conger

A Brief History of Sexy Halloween Costumes

(47) Comments | Posted October 31, 2013 | 9:00 AM

If I had a dollar for every time I've seen a social media comment along the lines of "why are Halloween costumes for women so sexy?!" I'd have enough money to march over to my neighborhood Halloween superstore and buy a sexy French fries costume. For young...

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WATCH: Feminist Halloween Costumes That Aren't Rosie the Riveter

(0) Comments | Posted October 25, 2013 | 6:18 PM

2013-10-24-costumeshp.jpg

Don't want to dress up like a sexy Crayon, sexy ear of corn or other ridiculous sexy something-or-other for Halloween? No problem.

Here's a hilarious roundup of feminist-inspired Halloween costume ideas beyond the go-to Rosie the...

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LOOK: Space Camp T-Shirts Tell Boys to 'Achieve' and Girls to 'Dream'

(42) Comments | Posted April 16, 2013 | 3:41 PM

First came controversy over the his/hers Iron Man and Avengers T-shirts that stoked consumer controversy over their mixed gendered messages about heroism. Now, behold this even more glaring example of gendered marketing, since, unlike the Marvel comics shirts, these T-shirts are male and female equivalents of the same...

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Is 'Thinspo' for Guys Any Less Harmful Than 'Thinspo' For Girls?

(0) Comments | Posted April 12, 2013 | 2:33 PM

Even though the media have reported on "thinspiration" -- a.k.a. thinspo -- websites for more than a decade, one of the first direct acknowledgements I've seen that boys and men are taking part in these online communities and social media streams was in a recent interview...

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The Best Place in the World for Women -- and Weddings?

(10) Comments | Posted February 21, 2013 | 5:54 PM

Do Icelandic women dream of Disney-brand Fairy Tale Weddings?

That non sequitur popped into my head after reading the recent New York Times piece on women who plan their weddings well in advance of a set date or even a set partner. For me, that article...

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The Demise of Dating Is Good News for Nice Guys

(28) Comments | Posted January 24, 2013 | 5:29 PM

To crib Dickens and dogpile a couple clichés while I'm at it: It's the best of times and the worst of times for nice guys, dating-wise. Granted, with their constantly finishing last, it's kind of always been the worst of times for these fellas who sometimes have trouble...

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Blocking My Ex on Facebook Got Me Over the Breakup

(6) Comments | Posted October 1, 2012 | 5:33 PM

When I ran into my ex-boyfriend for the first time after our relationship imploded, the awkward chitchat soon steered toward social media.

"So I noticed that someone de-friended me on Facebook," he said with an uncomfortable chuckle.

"I didn't de-friend you," I responded, taking a

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Why Celebrity Divorces Can Break Our Hearts Too

(113) Comments | Posted September 7, 2012 | 8:12 PM

When the Internet told me that Amy Poehler and Will Arnett are splitting after nine years of marriage, I audibly gasped. Then, as I stared at the red carpet snapshot of them with a Photoshopped rip down the middle, digitally rendering those comedy gems asunder, I wanted to...

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Why Dating Needs More Politics (and Chicken Wings)

(4) Comments | Posted May 24, 2012 | 4:09 PM

If you're looking for love during this Presidential campaign season (or any time, as a matter of fact), there's a quick way to figure out whether that online profile incarnate is a genuinely compatible match: talk about politics. Oh, wait. That's one of the four topics -- alongside money, sex...

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Ultimatums and the Irrational Economics of Relationships

(9) Comments | Posted May 18, 2012 | 11:24 AM

To ultimatum or not to ultimatum: that was the question posed by a Stuff Mom Never Told You listener on Twitter earlier this week in reference to a guide to getting a guy to propose by strategic negotiation. Because that's all an ultimatum really...

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What's Ailing 13 Million American Vaginas?

(1) Comments | Posted March 22, 2012 | 2:36 PM

Don't let the title of this post fool you. I'm not about to trot out statistics on female sexual dysfunction, nor is this an HPV refresher course. And although the female body -- particularly the region between the belly button and the knees -- already...

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Single Women Don't Need Weddings -- Here's Why

(29) Comments | Posted January 16, 2012 | 9:13 AM

What is it about the unmarrieds these days, and particularly unwed women pining for wedding-like fêtes of their own?

I ask this as a woman who's spouse-less for the foreseeable future and also loves the notion of a party thrown in her honor that involves cake. What I'm...

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Rebounder, Rejoice!

(7) Comments | Posted December 22, 2011 | 1:54 PM

Last holiday season wasn't the best for me romantically. My ex and I waved the white flag on Christmas Eve after being called out on our joint unhappiness by a total stranger sitting across the bar from us. When kindly barflies can sniff out a couple's soured eggnog...

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Sex Myth Exposed: What They Don't Teach You About Your Hymen

(111) Comments | Posted December 20, 2011 | 3:05 PM

I'm not the first person to say this, but it bears repeating: hymens are a myth.

Or rather, intact, virginal hymens that can "break" or "pop" inside of us don't exist.

Countless young women, myself included not so long ago, have fretted over what happens with the...

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5 Fundamental Truths of Online Dating

(31) Comments | Posted February 24, 2011 | 3:40 PM

Allow me to cut to the chase: I'm single and considering online dating.

I haven't lost faith in randomly meeting someone who rings my bell, but why not jumpstart the process a little bit, right? Why not see who's out there in my fair city...

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Marriage: Does It Really Make a Difference in a Relationship?

(58) Comments | Posted February 7, 2011 | 8:03 AM

Many, many episodes ago on my podcast Stuff Mom Never Told You, I jokingly commented to my co-host Molly that life would be a lot easier if society abolished marriage. We had been discussing the differences between civil unions and marriages, and after dissecting the legalese...

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Do Feminists Make for Better Girlfriends?

(2) Comments | Posted October 7, 2010 | 3:24 PM

You know what's a fun topic to bring up on a first date with a guy? Feminism. Once you get hard-lined religious and political beliefs out of the way (preferably first thing in the car, or during the appetizer if you must wait that long), toss out a...

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Girls' Puberty Coming Sooner -- But What about the Boys?

(2) Comments | Posted August 13, 2010 | 3:24 PM

As we fret over precocious puberty turning little girls into little women, why haven't more people stopped to ask what's going on with the boys? For all of the conversation about how precocious puberty might wreak havoc on girls in terms of lowered self-confidence and earlier sexual activity,...

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Just How Good Is Too Good Looking in the Workplace?

(3) Comments | Posted July 23, 2010 | 1:22 PM

When reading Jessica Bennett's stellar Newsweek piece on "The Beauty Advantage", one figure stuck out to me. The magazine surveyed 202 corporate hiring managers about the impact of attractiveness on hiring and performance, and while a majority stressed the importance of paying attention to personal grooming, "47 percent...

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A Bartender's Guide to the Gender Wage Gap

(0) Comments | Posted July 19, 2010 | 11:46 AM

Cruising through Huffington Post's 8 Jobs In Which Women Make More Than Men left me more crestfallen than keyed up for women's advancement in the workplace. The slideshow, based on the June 2010 women's earnings report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, is meant to offer...

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