This afternoon, I had the dubious pleasure of shopping for undergarments for myself. (The underwire had finally poked out of my favorite white bra and a gal really can’t be without at least ONE white one!)
On this particular day, I was shopping all by myself. Kids were in school, hubby was at home. It was just me and my debit card.
In hindsight, going to the mall was probably my first mistake. First of all…I wear vintage. Second of all… Even if I didn’t, I feel like my age group (the 30-40 something bracket..ok, fine. 37. I’m 37.) is skipped over altogether when it comes to the mall shopping experience. This is likely because the great consumer analyst powers that be recognize that we are usually traveling with small people who divert our attention to places like “American Eagle”, “Gap Kids” and “The Great American Cookie”. This leaves us with a choice between purchasing the same top as our daughters, or wandering into the generic “one color/shape/size” fits all styles geared towards Mom-types. Bleh.
Anyway, I digress. I headed directly into the nearest large department-store-that-shall-remain-nameless in the hopes that I could finish my errand quickly and move on to bigger and better things. You know the store. LOTS of perfume samples right near the door, bordered by phalanxes of brightly colored make up counters and sales gals in lab coats looking clinical, as if they have their doctorate in eye shadow application. I tried to run. I really did. But I was brought up short by the “Free Gift with Purchase”. If I am ever on the run for a crime I clearly did not commit, all the police would have to do is announce a free gift with purchase and I would turn myself in. I’m that bad.
So I stopped. I picked up a lipgloss. And that’s when it happened. SWOOOP! (I mean it. She swooped.) A salesgirl was right there, asking me what I was interested in, if she could help and, oh, by the way, what sort of skin care regimen was I using. Now, the honest truth is, I lied. I would not tell this highly made up woman with the curiously dark eyebrows and official lab coat that I mashed up an avacado once a week as a mask and applied vitamin e oil at night and (gulp) $10 sunscreen in the morning. I’ve dabbled in (lots) of other moisturizers…usually from free gift with purchase sets..so I picked one and told her I was using it religiously. Oh, how wrong I was. Did I not KNOW that in my “late 30’s” I should be concerned with stretching pores? Dry, crepey skin?? WRINKLES??? I needed to begin preventing this now. Right. This. Second.
Truthfully, friends, I am not usually susceptible to this kind of manipulation. I’m pretty comfortable as I am and I like to think that I’ve got more to offer than a face. But in the glaring light of the department store and the magnification of the mirror, I began to panic. I AM swiftly approaching my forties. What if I wake up one morning and it isn’t my face looking back at me in the mirror anymore? What if I DO need this “magic lotion” to retain my identity??
I bought the damn lotion. And immediately had buyers remorse. I went out to the car, photographed my face and sent out a plea to my facebook friends asking if I appeared to be “10 years younger” as the lotion had claimed. This is that picture.
I made it super big to prove a point. Get a good look. There is nothing wrong with my face. In fact, for a 37 year old woman, I manage ok. So WHY do the cosmetic companies continually try to tell us we need to be eternally 25? Money, that’s why. I will not tell you the embarrassing amount of money I shelled out for a small bottle of lotion. I will tell you that thanks to the support of some lovely friends who managed to snap me back to reality, I marched right back in that store and returned the lotion.
Then, I took myself over to the nearest book store to further develop my lovliest feature…my brain. I purchased some books, a magazine, a delicious latte, this super cute owl mug for my daughter..
..and on the way home, I purchased an avacado. For $.99.
Hugs and Smooches,