I hauled out my basket of makeup and started my morning ritual. Face paint. First, a layer of “foundation” – the base of a smooth complexion starts with a good, well, base. Next up,
Next up, concealer. Time to blot out those little evidences of having eaten something I am allergic to (maybe if I could work out what it was, I could avoid it next time and save myself this step!).
Then the fun starts: filling in the colour. There’s eyeliner and lipliner to show where the edges of my features would be if I weren’t so exhausted, and if my dysfunctional thyroid hadn’t sucked the colour out of my lips. There’s the combing of the eyebrows to fill in the gaps left by that same ol’ thyroid dysfunction. The careful balancing of lip colours – dark to fill in the palour; pale to mitigate the dark; lip gloss to compensate for the dryness …
And finally, shading the eyelid to look perfectly natural. If natural included shades of green, blue, purple, and glitter. Of course, glitter.
Last but not least, mascara. My thinning lashes start blonding about halfway through, and without mascara, my eyes look, as my dad so eloquently describes them, like two pissholes in the snow. Thanks, Pops. Of course, the mascara has to be waterproof as my leaky eyes wash the regular kind down my face. Attractive.
Of course, the mascara has to be waterproof as my leaky eyes wash the regular kind down my face. Attractive.
And the waterproof kind? Well, I don’t suppose it’s any surprise to those who know me that I am allergic to it. Just a little bit. Every morning is a choice between mascara-induced Tourette’s tics that impair my vision … and the ability to see, knowing that I look like I died just a little bit. (It doesn’t take a whole pile of, “Gosh – are you ill?” comments to start doubting yourself and quickly reach for the mascara wand of makeup magic!)
And … we’re done.
Why is this my morning ritual? Why is it the morning ritual of every woman I know? Why will none of us leave the house without our “war paint” firmly in place? And why, if one of us does, do the rest of us pounce, trying to find out what’s “wrong”?
What’s wrong is that we don’t feel enough just as we are. We slap layers of makeup onto our faces to hide the way we look naturally. Our faces are, in a very real way, made up.
What deficiencies are we making up for?