It is hard to be stunningly beautiful. I’m thinking, anyway. Sitting in my kitchen this morning looking at the sections of the Sunday paper that now come on Saturdays, I realize how many pages of the sale supplements from high-end department stores that are devoted to make-up. I actually started out looking for a quality dough hook for some planned homemade bread on this rainy, cool day, when the sheer quantity of pages containing very expensive cosmetics side-tracked me.
I, admittedly, am not high maintenance when it comes to makeup, or even particularly skilled at the proper appliance methods. A few years ago, I discovered Cover Girl skin tone corrector, but until then, the facial application I bought with most regularity was Chap Stick. Last year, I bought a curler for my eyelashes that I have yet to use because it just looks painful.
Now I, like you, know many women who if caught naked in the middle of the night with their house on fire, would be carried out by a fireman; bare-bottomed, clutching their makeup bags while applying mascara. These are the same women who tie up their bathrooms for hours getting things just right. I’m only in mine for the length of time it takes my husband to carry the groceries in. But today, for whatever reason, I decided to take a closer look at the many, many products that make the beautiful, stunning, and me – well, simply stunned.
I learned that you start with a “fixing spray”, this helps hold makeup on, followed by a quality moisturizer that gives you a smooth surface with which to um…work on. Next is a primer that “makes pores disappear”, and then, a concealer. (This process, by the way, is eerily similar to steps taken to refinish an old dresser).
Now, If my math is right, these four items total $185 (this week anyway), and you apply them before even getting to any of the makeup that is visible on your face! Here’s my problem; steps five and six are foundation and blush. In my makeup bag, these are items one and two and done!
I am not even going to address the eyes! They have their own sales catalog, their own marketing department! From the stool at my kitchen island, I looked at my face in the toaster and thought ‘should I be doing more?’ Nah……. I decided to waste no more time and head head out shopping for my bread hook to get my yeast rising.
Now, in our mall, the only way to get into Macy’s is through the makeup department. Spaced equally among the counters are very eager sales women (sometimes men) that look like they have spent years avoiding the sun, and have been trained to spot facial imperfections.
Here, the well-dressed, perfectly coiffed customer gets greeted with a knowing smile that says “yes, we have that shade, do you need to replenish?” With me – they pounce. “Would you like a makeover?” or “Let us give some color to your face”. Usually I can make it through without responding, but today, after my morning cosmetic lesson, I felt armed with enough knowledge not to let their arrogance go unchallenged.
“No thanks, ladies. You are looking at a middle aged woman (if I lived to be 112), in jeans, topsiders and sweater, who is very comfortable in her own skin. A little blush and mascara – I’m good to go. You both, on the other hand, could use a little color… so why don’t you put your employee discounts to work….and don’t forget the moisturizer, it gives you a smooth surface to work on.” When I finished shopping, I had to walk outside to get to my car in the cold rain to avoid going back through their department. There is more than one way to get color in your cheeks.