Monday, March 12, 2007

What you see is what you get.

Over the last few years, I've become low maintenance. Very low. I haven't dyed my hair, worn make-up, waxed my eyebrows, or worn heels with any regularity since "The Great Dating Frenzy" of December 05- January 06 (see archives). I do use a blow dryer (no products though) and shave my legs now and then, but other than that, I haven't really taken part in the trappings of female beauty rituals.

I was reminded of how low maintenance I am this weekend when my mom and I took a road trip and stayed with a family friend. She's my Mom's best friend and she has a daughter my age (the one who randomly decided I should be a bride's maid in her wedding even though we rarely keep in touch.) These woman have always had the latest in hair technology - spiral perms, frosting, you name it, they've had it and continue to have it. They spend an inordinate amount of time fluffing and coaxing and putting in place. My Mom's BFF even told a story of how she had to track down hair gel in the Dominican Republic and ended up paying a fortune for it. All I kept thinking was, Why? You're on vacation in the Dominican Republic. Take a freaking break. Go swimming. No one cares about your hair.

My Mom seems to have fallen into this pit herself. She kept beating me to our shared bathroom and I'd have to do the peepee dance for a hell of a long time while she "put on her face" and or "took off her face," fixed her hair, and applied the 3000 facial moisturizing products she brought - some for morning, some for evening, some for the "delicate skin of the eyes," some for the rest of her face. It was agony. Once, after she'd taken off her face I was actually a little scared because she looked so different. It illustrated the miracles that make-up can do, and I understand the urge to look pretty (even if it is a societal construct blah blah blah), but I never want to get to the point where I am covered in so much chemistry that I no longer look like myself.

Also, if I never have to talk about the joy that is getting a "Coach" or "Louis Vitton" bag on the cheap I would be very happy. Where does the female urge to own 30 designer handbags come from? I have one, and when that one wears out, I get another one. My sister falls into the category of bag hoarding women and we couldn't be more different. I don't give a flying fudgecicle about brand names. My life will not be more complete if I have 2 dozen bags some poor, and most likely underage Asian, person had to make for pittance illegally. All I care is that the one I have holds my stuff and isn't hideously ugly. And even then, I'm flexible on the attractiveness. This weekend, we (they) spent an hour talking about a store my sister knows about that sells these things for $20. Luckily, at the same time, I had a plate of breakfast food in front of me that I could concentrate on instead, and that I could shovel into my mouth when I wanted to say something rude. Pancakes are helpful in not making enemies.

Mmmm, pancakes. Now there's a topic I can get behind.

6 comments:

DecemberFlower said...

Where does the female urge to own 30 designer handbags come from?

I have no idea. I don't understand it, but my mom is one of those people who need to have 50 million pocketbooks in all kinds of colors, shapes and sizes. We go shopping, and that's the first thing she goes for. They don't have to be designer bags, but if they are, all the better.

What's so wrong with having one bag that's functional? In all honesty, I'd rather go without one, period, but women's clothing never allows the pocket-space that men's does.

Celebrate Woo-Woo said...

No need for designer labels on my stuff, but I have a significant (although not 50) handbag collection. Why? Because I am a total freak about matching stuff; I even try to match my underwear to my outfit. Sometimes the basic black or brown bag just won't cut it, and there are so many options that I can't resist the indulgence.

Justin M said...

BTW, can you actually label yourself as "Low" or "High" maintenance? I think that comes from your friends and partners.... because... I think many people have a poor self-perception of their own maintenance... for example: Many "high maintenance" women think they are "low maintenance". But, their friends and partners all know... the truth....

Sassy Pants said...

Justin - I'll have to ask Friendster Guy to weigh in on my maintenance level. Although in theory you may be able to yourself. I don't think I'm way off base in thinking I'm low on the maintenance scale.

I wonder if there is some sort of gene that makes a person more or less stereotypically "female" - and by that I mean bag coveting, shopping loving, child wanting, what have you. I have none of those things. And yet, my sister has them in spades. It's an interesting thing to ponder.

DecemberFlower said...

I wonder the same thing. It's definitely not just nurture. My mom tried SO HARD to get me to participate in the girly things, and that didn't exactly work out for her.

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