Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Cleanser, Creams and Collagen, Oh My!

Hi there. Remember me? I would have written sooner except that the Funkapotomus has had me pinned to the floor for a few months and I didn't see any reason to share him with you. I've also been busy writing a play, tentatively titled "The Odds Couple," but more on that at a later date. I've pulled myself out of seclusion today to share an important public service announcement for women of a certain (middle) age. If you're a younger woman, remember this lesson for the future, which will be here before you know it. If you're 60-plus, well, it's probably too late for you. (The truth hurts.) And if you're not a woman at all, but know a woman of a certain (middle) age, please pass this along.

What I have to say could determine whether anyone will ever want to look at you again.

It all started Monday evening with the Mary Kay catalog. I ordered my two favorite colors of eyeliner and concealer, but I stopped short of adding the timewise facial cleanser, which cost an exorbitant $20. I figured Dove soap could do the job just as well. Looking back, this was clearly a sign of things to come.

Tuesday evening I had scheduled a facial. For me to get a facial, the stars have to align, or, there has to be 1) a special, discounted price; 2) a free gift; or 3) a gift card to pay for it. In this case, all three were in order so I lay myself down on the massage table and waited for the technician to make me beautiful. But first, she had a question for me:
Her: Would you like the collagen cream or the eye cream as your free gift?
Me: What do you recommend?
Her: What do you have at home?
Me: Nothing.
Her: Nothing???
She reacted as if I had said I never brush my teeth.
Her: Why not?
Me: I've never believed that stuff actually works and it's expensive and I'm cheap.
Her: There have been white papers and research that shows it makes a difference and there's some good eye cream that's not expensive. It's like $40.
Well, that's $30 more than I want to spend for eye cream.
Her: Have you had other preventative maintenance treatments besides regular facials?
Me:  Nope. 
Her: Why not?
Me: I didn't know I was supposed to.
Here's the thing, my mom didn't do/use this stuff. If she shaved her legs it was a good day week. She didn't use moisturizer much less eye cream, masks, peels, and collagen. Other than lipstick she didn't wear any makeup. As far as I know she never waxed or got facials or microderm abrasion, or massages. And she was beautiful to me! So where was I supposed to learn I'm supposed to have all these expensive creams and ointments and makeup and procedures and treatments?

After revealing myself as an uninformed amateur, my technician proceeded to give me a "custom" (as in,
make-it-up-as-she-goes) facial. For all I know she was using mayonnaise, shaving cream, and olive oil. She certainly knew that I wouldn't guess the difference. She also rightly assumed that I wouldn't purchase any of the "stuff" she recommended the last time I got a facial (more than a year ago), so she didn't bother suggesting anything on this occasion. She basically finished the job and said, "You're done. Move on out so I can work on someone who gives a damn." Ah well. It was nice while it lasted.

I do have a question about facials, however. I don't understand why they apply a bunch of creams--with a gentle, circular motion, which feels delightful--but then immediately wipe it off with a hot towel (which is my favorite part). If they're going to wipe it off, why'd they put it on in the first place? And they repeat this process at least three times. I find it very confusing. Frankly, I think it's probably a bunch of hooey, and I could probably pay Abby to dim the lights, warm some towels, and massage my cheeks and temples to achieve the same results.

But speaking of Abby, I will be sure to impress upon her the need to control the aging process as soon as she turns 18. It's never to early to stop time in its tracks.