Last month, when Starbucks introduced the Unicorn Frappuccino for a limited run, the internet just about lost its damn mind. Stores literally sold out of the blue and pink sugar rush in a cup, and baristas everywhere were posting pictures of how their lives had basically been ruined by the drink (same tho). It had absolutely no coffee in it, and we knew that whoever handles karma would find a way to get them back for this monstrosity. Turns out it didn’t take long, and Starbucks might be headed to court over the Unicorn
A coffee shop in Brooklyn called The End has slammed Starbs with a $10 million trademark lawsuit, claiming that they started selling a Unicorn Latte back in December and have had a trademark application pending since earlier this year. The drink looks, um, exactly like the Starbucks version, except all the ingredients are healthy-sounding, like dried maca root, cashew, and blue-green algae. Still sounds fucking gross, but at least it’s not going to singlehandedly give you diabetes.
Starbucks, of course, says the lawsuit is dumb—probably because it is. The Ends is claiming that “In addition to having a highly similar name, Starbucks’ Unicorn Frappuccino shares visual similarities to the Unicorn Latte in that both were brightly colored and featured the colors pink and blue prominently.” This has got to be the epitome of hipster Brooklyn shit to not only be like “We did it before it went mainstream,” but to SUE OVER IT. Really, hipsters, you’re gonna sue because someone copied your color scheme? Because really, if we wanna get technical, rose quartz and serenity (aka pink and blue) were Pantone’s colors of the year in 2016. So. Check mate.
— FoodBev (@FoodBev) May 5, 2017
Starbucks’ lawyers put out a half-assed statement about how the drink was inspired by the “fun, spirited and colorful unicorn-themed food and drink that have been trending in social media.” While they of course don’t say that they took the idea from The End, they’re basically admitting that they got the idea because some intern was scrolling down their Instagram explore page and saw some blue and pink shit.
While we’re glad we weren’t the only ones who were personally victimized by the Unicorn Frappuccino, this lawsuit seems as unnecessary as the invention of this drink in the first place. We’re pretty sure the Unicorn Frappuccino is already over, so isn’t it a moo point? What is Starbucks gonna do, pay this random-ass coffee shop all the money they earned from the Unicorn Frap? Will they issue a personal apology for the assault on our Instagram feeds, along with a promise to cease and desist all rainbow colored beverages? One can only hope.
In case you missed it, Starbucks launched their Unicorn Frappuccino last week, proving to all of us that it was somehow possible for 12-year-old girls to hack the site’s menu portal and create this cup of pure rainbow shit. Also referred to as the “Mountain Dew of coffee”, or “The reason 2017 is turning out to be worse than 2016”, this drink is literally the reason Americans are stupid and morbidly obese.
As we picked up our venti cold brew and judged everyone ordering the latest Lisa Frank-inspired concoction, we started to think about our own Starbucks orders. Like, we wouldn’t be caught dead ordering a frappuccino, but what if we want something other than a black coffee with a Splenda and a splash of Skim? How fat would we get? After doing some research, we came up with some ideas for ordering delicious shit from Starbucks without gaining weight. Here are some rules to follow:
1. Think Ahead
First of all, if you’re a Starbs rookie, there are a couple things you should know. If you don’t specify exactly what you want, you’re fucked. Don’t order a latte assuming they’ll use skim milk or soy. They’re using 2%, and the calories will start adding up REAL quick. Also, if you’re ordering an iced tea and don’t specify that you want it unsweetened, they’ll sweeten it with the full-sugar classic syrup, and trust me, you don’t want to be consuming that.
2. If You Must Get Syrup, Opt For Sugar-Free
The next thing you should know is that if you’re dying for some sweet AF flavor in your drink, the only syrups that come in sugar-free versions are the mocha, vanilla, and cinnamon dolce. So, if you’re ordering a skinny caramel latte thinking you’re being healthy, they’re putting the real caramel syrup in, and probably adding more than the nutritional info accounts for. Basically, you’re playing yourself.
3. Customize Your Drink (Without Being Annoying)
Now that we have the basics down, it’s time to get creative. If you think about it, the Starbucks menu is just a bunch of combinations of syrups, espresso shots, and milk, so it’s easy to customize a drink that has basically no cals with tons of ingredients. If the barista looks confused when you order something that’s not on the menu, just make it seem like you order it everyday and have never had a problem. You’ll be surprised how flexible she’ll be when you have 12 angry people in line behind you who haven’t had caffeine yet.
4. Three Words: Iced Skinny Latte
If you’re a frappuccino addict (what are you, 12?) the typical health hack of Starbucks is to switch your ice cream concoction to the iced skinny latte. If you’re into flavors, choose from sugar-free vanilla, mocha, or cinnamon dolce, and if you’re legit dying for white chocolate for some reason, ask for half a pump AT MOST. That shit is sweet enough with just a drop, so you’ll be fine. The iced skinny latte is made with a shot of espresso, skim milk, and the syrup you ask for, and the whole drink is like 80 calories. Maybe 100 for a grande. You can also ask for coconut milk or soy if you’re dairy-free, and the cals are basically the same. If you want something a little sweeter, get the tall iced skinny macchiato, which is also less than 100 calories. They don’t add as much caramel drizzle as they do on a regular, but once again, you’re an adult and you’ll be okay without the mountain of sticky caramel on your morning coffee.
5. Swap Out Your Cappuccino
If you’re one of those girls who went abroad a few years ago still needs to start every morning with a hot cappuccino with extra foam, try getting the Americano Misto instead. It’s a hot drink that’s basically just espresso shots, water filled up halfway, and steamed milk on top. AKA it’s not all steamed milk aka slightly less fattening.
6. Stay Away From The Fancy Fake Coffee Drinks
If you want to order a drink that’s not coffee, skip the diabetes bombs like the vanilla bean frap or strawberries and cream, and instead get a tall passion iced tea with soy milk. The whole drink is about 70 calories, and tastes like a creamy fruit drink. It might not taste like a double chocolate DQ blizzard, but then again it’s 2pm on a Wednesday and you’re sober. You’ll take the iced tea.
So there you have it. There’s a lot you can order at Starbucks if you’re willing to get creative and get a couple weird stares from people in line. Just promise us, for God’s sake, that you won’t add whipped cream, because there’s literally nothing we can help you with there. You can try Sears.
Starbucks just launched a new drink today called the Unicorn Frappuccino, and it’s basically the Mountain Dew of coffee. I mean, even more so than the Frappuccino already is, because that’s barely coffee TBH. It’s more like a coffee-based method for 14-year-old betches-in-training to ingest 500 calories of pure sugar. And in case you were wondering exactly how extra this drink truly is, here’s the description from Starbucks: “Like its mythical namesake, the Unicorn Frappuccino blended crème comes with a bit of magic, starting as a purple beverage with swirls of blue and a first taste that is sweet and fruity.” Ughhh. Excuse me, I think I just rolled my eyes so hard I need some OJ to help with the comedown.
First of all, it just doesn’t seem that hard for a drink to change from pink to purple. Mermaid Barbie pioneered that technology in like, 1995 to make our bathtimes more magical—so sorry Starbucks, but I am not impressed. Second of all, and most importantly, this sounds disgusting. Like drinking a glass of liquid Nerds.
monstrosity drink is only available from April 19-23, or at least that’s what Starbucks is claiming, though just like when your man says the Insta model whose photos he keeps liking is “his friend from high school,” we’re a little suspicious. Much like an actual unicorn, we hope this drink also disappears and goes extinct (Unicorns went extinct, right?). Starbucks wanted to get in on the rainbow trend because apparently the key to getting kids to buy your shit is to make it look like a Kesha music video. We’ve already talked about why the rainbow trend is basic, and this drink is no different. I’m sorry to all the boring nice girls out there who think buying colorful shit makes them interesting, but liking mermaids and unicorns and shit as an adult is not a personality. It is a disorder. Seek help.
So like, WTF is actually in this drink? According to the ingredients page on Starbucks’ site, there’s Mango syrup, Blue Drizzle, Pink Powder, Sour Blue Powder, and Whipped Cream. The blue drizzle is made of “Condensed Skim Milk, Coconut Oil, Cocoa Butter, Natural Flavor, Salt, Potassium Sorbate, and Monoglycerides” so basically neither fruit nor coffee. Let’s be real though, nobody’s buying this for the taste. This is strictly an #eatingfortheinsta situation.
Bottom line, people who like this drink probably liked the movie Suicide Squad and dressed up as Harley Quinn for Halloween. The only thing that could save us here is if this is all one big Banksy prank about capitalism, or at the very least a Dumb Starbucks situation. If we really think about it, this is probably our fault in some way. We all used the rainbow Snapchat filters, and now Starbucks is just giving us the Frappuccino version of that. You know what they say, one great Snap Story halfway across the world can have huge affects here at home. They call that shit The Unicorn Effect.
Like most betches, I spend approximately half of my paycheck on Starbucks every month. I mean, I don’t have the exact numbers because budgets are for accountants and people without online shopping addictions, but the point is that coffee is the lifeblood coursing through my veins. Luckily for everyone else who can’t get through the afternoon without a triple caramel macchiato, coffee is good for you personally, even if it’s terrible for your bank account. Let me count the ways.
1. It Reduces Your Risk of Stroke
Full disclosure here: Caffeine has been shown to cause an intense increase in blood pressure right after you drink it, but it goes away pretty quickly. In the long term (aka that thing you can never think about), caffeine is actually thought to reduce your risk of stroke. Back in 2015, a study of more than 82,000 people found that the ones who drank at least one cup of coffee a day (or a fuckton of green tea) were way less likely to have a stroke over the years.
In 2011, a similar study found that women who drank two or more cups each day were less likely to have a stroke, too. So to all the people who give you side-eye when you’re on your fourth cup by 10am can chill way out.
2. It Keeps Your Teeth Healthy
According to research, drinking black coffee might prevent cavities. Obviously (and tragically) this doesn’t apply to the monstrosities from Starbucks we know and love, because if we learned anything in elementary school it’s that sugar = cavities. But if you can choke down black coffee, you’re actually doing your teeth a favor health-wise. Just buy a lifetime supply of whitening strips while you’re at it, because just because your teeth are health doesn’t mean they’re not stained AF.
3. It Has A Bunch of Antioxidants
You might associate antioxidants with
disgusting healthy foods you pretend to love like pomegranates or something, but coffee is actually one of the biggest sources of antioxidants in our diets. The main antioxidant coffee provides is chlorogenic acid, but there are a bunch of others floating around in your cup of joe. The jury is still out on whether that actually means anything, but at least you’ll feel healthy as shit and won’t have to spend like, $1K on an acai bowl to do so.
4. It Prevents Depression
Approximately a bajillion studies have shown that coffee is linked to a lower risk for depression, especially in women. This probably has to do with caffeine’s stimulatory effects—it encourages your brain to release dopamine, just like all the fun drugs but in lower doses. Coffee doesn’t cure depression (duh), but in Trump’s America, even just a lowered risk is pretty solid.
5. It Lowers Risk For Parkinson’s Disease
Parkinson’s disease is super scary—just ask Michael J Fox. Like, it’s one of those disease you can spend hours on WebMD convincing yourself you have and get all the way through making a ZocDoc appointment before your boyfriend reminds you that you’re just high. Well, next time you go down one of these rabbit holes, remind your anxiety brain that coffee might protect against Parkinson’s and control symptoms in people who already have it. In 2012, a study found that caffeine helped people with Parkinson’s control their movements, and a few other studies over the years have found that people who drink coffee every day are less likely to get the disease.
6. It Makes You More Alert
ICYMI because you’re one of those hipsters who drinks coffee “for the taste,” coffee quickly makes you more alert and reduces fatigue, which is why we all need it before dealing with work/people/the world in general on Monday morning. It can also mess with your sleep patterns, but that’s a small price to pay for it quelling all your homicidal tendencies.
7. It Reduces Skin Cancer Risk
Bad news: If you were like literally everyone else in the mid-2000s and used tanning beds as a teenager, you should watch out for skin cancer. Good news: Coffee drinking might be linked to a reduced risk for melanoma. Back to bad news: There have only been a few studies about it, so you still have to wear sunscreen on spring break.
8. You Turn Into A Monster At The Gym
Next time someone is inexplicably annoyed when you roll up to Pilates with Starbucks in hand, kindly refer them to the fuckton of research showing that caffeine boosts workout performance. Apparently, caffeine’s stimulation helps you work out harder, and all that dopamine makes the misery less miserable. Plus, people eat fewer calories when they drink caffeine before and after a workout, which is the literal opposite of what happens when I hit the gym.
9. You Literally Live Longer
Research shows that people who drink coffee every day tend to live longer. Better yet, the last study on the subject back in 2015 found that moderate coffee drinkers—the people who have three to five cups a day—were the ones that lived longest, even compared to people who had just one or two cups. I’d like to note that if three to five cups PER DAY is considered “moderate” coffee consumption, I don’t want to meet the “heavy” consumers. But regardless, there’s your excuse to order an extra shot in your latte from today until you kick the bucket several centuries from now.
In conclusion: To all the smug tea drinkers out there, kindly STFU about the perils of coffee and feel free to take every seat.
So Starbucks’ quest to get away from the “basic” label continues. The beloved provider of every betches’ lifeblood (the PSL, duh) just announced the addition of a bunch of new stuff, and TBH it’s all hilariously hipster. The most obvious culprit is the Sous Vide Egg Bites, which are gluten-free and make Starbucks sound like they’re going for a Michelin star, but trust me when I say the newest drink, the cascara latte, is pretty fucking hipster too.
Let’s start with WTF cascara means. The important part of coffee is the bean (fucking duh), but first, you have to get through the fruit surrounding it—the cascara is just the outer shell. Usually, the coffee cherry is thrown away, but apparently, sometimes people dry the cascara and make some weird coffee/tea infusion out of it. Please allow me to point out that infusions are automatically +50 points on the scale of food hipsterdom.
Last week, Starbucks announced that the first new latte flavor of the year is based on this cascara infusion thing. The syrup is made of coffee cherry extract, coconut flavoring, and a fuckton of sugar, of course. Because that wasn’t hipster enough, words like “subtle” and “lightly sweet” were also tossed around with wild abandon. I remind you, this is fucking coffee, not a $500 bottle of wine.
Oh yeah, and the latte is sprinkled with a topping meant to look like a coffee bean, which is utterly pointless because it’s covered up with a lid. Will someone please tell Starbucks to stop trying so fucking hard?
The drink became available to Starbucks rewards members (so every betch ever) on January 6. Everyone else has to wait until January 10 to find out what hipster tastes like in coffee form.