I am musing upon make-up this morning.
In my teens, I wore entirely too much. I was self conscious of my zits, and wore green eye shadow, purple eyeliner and blue mascara around my brown eyes. I wore a dark plum blush to define hollowness in my chipmunk cheeks. I wore fuscia and purple frosty lipsticks that I had a bad habit of chewing off. Except when I was at the beach. Then I wore baby oil (not on my face) and sprayed something I dubbed Ocean Potion in my hair – a combination of lemon juice, hydrogen peroxide and salty polluted water of Long Island Sound. I wore entirely too much Dippity Do and mousse. Everyone did, it was the early eighties. Having said that, I never rocked the giant hair of the eighties.
In my twenties, I rebelliously eschewed make-up and hair products, unless it was a special occasion, or the rare occasion I just felt like it. I wore oversized clothes on my 98lb frame and refused to believe anyone wanted to look at me. Post-college, when I was working at a big wig law firm for a few years, I wore suits and just enough required make-up everyday (mascara, a little foundation dotted on a random zit, Clinique’s black honey lip gloss or a wine lipstick by Chanel – early 90s, folks, even indies like Lisa Loeb wore wine lipstick), but my hair was basically down to my waist and always pulled back into a ponytail or a big barrette. My skin felt healthier, and looked healthier than when I was younger. Then I got pregnant with Mr. Cynic and chopped off all that hair.
In my thirties, I became more comfortable with my face, started to lose the chipmunk cheeks, and didn’t really care one way or the other if I wore any makeup. I was generally leaning toward naturalness in all things, and that included the rare use of make-up as a mom of two young boys. Lip balm was the order of the day.
In my forties, my eyes look beadier, my eyelashes are even more invisible. I am naturally greyer than a 60 year old, and recently returned to dying and highlighting the hair. I look tired because I am. My skin is beginning to show the signs of all that early sun exposure, and I still get zits on par with my teen sons. I wear make-up more daily now, and feel a little more self-conscious when I leave the house without some on. But I still prefer to go without if I’m not going anywhere.
Mr. Cynic thinks I worry too much what other people think. I know that isn’t really the case. I just want to feel more presentable, illustrating my internal pep rather than my flagging energy.
Sigh, now I understand why my mother never left the house without “her face on.”