I like to observe things around me and one thing I've come to note of late is that a lot of women look like Muppets. Miss Piggy has enormous, spider-like, all-encompassing false eyelashes and she is a Muppet, right? Why would any woman want to look like that? I am so perplexed by this trend.
The Wall Street Journal and other newspapers say that the false eyelash industry is booming. One source said it made 44 million dollars in 2010. Even with the threat of complications like infections and permanent loss of lashes, women are still lining up for this service. I believe it because everywhere I look, I feel like I'm in a horror movie called "Tarantula" and women have spiders coming out of their eyes. I keep a having a nightmare that I will be next. But then I remember that I would have to actually drive myself to a salon, willingly sit in a chair for about two hours and then open my wallet for a couple hundred dollars first, and I would never do that. What a relief! Spending $10 instead of $7 on mascara at Target is when I feel like I've suddenly gone all crazy.
Really, though, doesn't just buying mascara make you crazy enough? How is one woman supposed to decipher all the different formulas? I never know if I'm supposed to want to try the volumizing or the lengthening or the curling or the deepest blackest black? And then, there is the choice in wands. It was much simpler when it was just Cover Girl and Maybelline and Max Factor. Now, you can't even get Max Factor unless you live in the United Kingdom, which is terrible because it was always my favorite. I digress. The point is, we women have it hard enough. We just need to get out the door in the morning and we don't need to worry about such trivial things. Now we have to worry about wands and formulas and then when everybody else on the train or in the office is showing up looking like Muppets, we might feel the pressure to look like a Muppet too.
If you haven't guessed by now, I'm going to suggest that you rebel against looking like Miss Piggy. I think Miss Piggy wants to look like a Kardashian, but who would want to look like that either? Have you ever seen pictures of them without their makeup and their fake eyelashes? You and I get up and we put on a normal amount of makeup, a mom's amount, a working woman's amount, and we go about our lives. How long does someone like you or me have to put makeup on anyway? Five minutes for a regular day? Ten if we're going out somewhere really special? We have important things to do, people who need us. We can't spend all day at the mirror. They have to spend a week in a makeup artist's chair to look like we're used to seeing them, so when we see pictures of them in real life, we get scared. Doesn't that make you feel sorry for them? Don't you realize that actually makes you prettier than them because you don't need all that stuff to look like yourself? Think about that and be grateful.
I have never had eyelash extensions, or spent money on Latisse, the prescription so many women use to grow their own lashes to ridiculous lengths. My own mascara changes every three months, but I average $8 to $10. The most I ever spent was on DiorShow for $25 at Sephora and that was a stupid decision because I couldn't tell the difference between that and the $8 mascaras. I looked up some prices for lash extensions in my area and found they ranged anywhere from $450 for a full set for mink to $150 for synthetic and took two hours for the first sitting. Fills were anywhere from $200 for the mink to $50 for the synthetic and took another 45 minutes to an hour, every two to three weeks. That makes my $25 for Christian Dior seem like nothing, right? Who has that kind of money to throw away? Who has that kind of time to waste? I don't think Melinda Gates wears fake eyelashes. She gives her money away to help people. She doesn't waste it on something so ridiculous.
Well, here is how we revolt against this industry that is lying to us, telling us we have to look like the people in Hollywood: Spend the money and the time on something else. Something, or some things that will actually make you or other people HAPPY. Do you want the truth? Eyelashes do not make a person happy. They don't. They can't. You are a smart person so I'm sure you can come up with ideas of your own, but here are a few of mine.
- date night with your husband
- family activities
- music lessons for your child
- music lessons for you
- books for your child
- books for you
- books for the local school
- books for the shelter
- donations to the food bank
- donations to your church
- donations to the women's shelter
- donations to any charity
- donations to another charity
- art supplies
- art classes
- cooking classes
- ingredients to cook a gourmet meal
- a new painting for your home
- symphony tickets
- concert tickets
- sporting event tickets
- new shoes
- a really pretty dress
- family vacation
- second honeymoon
- anything else but fake eyelashes
Last week, my daughter and I went to see the ballet, "The Sleeping Beauty." It was magnificent. We went to dinner first and all together it was cheaper than eyelash extensions. Are the women of today's society trading lovely, cultural, social experiences with loved ones because they would rather have fake eyelashes? Even if you had all the money in the world, could not that money be put to better use? If we really have that kind of money to throw away on falsehoods, what does that say about our culture? About the women of today?
About a year ago I went over to the home of a dear friend. When she greeted me I actually was startled as I hadn't seen her new eyelashes. They were very off-putting, jet black, miles long, and completely encircled her eyes. She didn't look like herself. I found myself staring at her the whole time we spent together . She kept asking what was wrong. I finally had to say, "hey, I'm not used to seeing you with those things on your eyes." I felt like my friend was someone else. She acted differently with them on, constantly batting her new Muppet eyes. I didn't like her this way. She scared me. I began thinking, "gosh, do I need to get those?" Then she told me it was actually kind of hard to see through them. Really? And they were expensive. Well, I have a hard enough time seeing as it is with my dry eyes and I already have bifocals, so I didn't need one more issue. Plus, it's hard enough just to get the darn mascara on in the morning and off again at night.
Is all this eyelash business changing who we are as women? Is it causing us to attract the wrong kind of men? Is it making us hide behind something that's not real and making us miss out on greater opportunities to grow our talents and experience the world? Are we missing opportunities to serve our fellowmen because we're spending all our money on ourselves? And is it scaring off our friends and associates because it makes us bat our fake spider eyelashes and nobody wants to get hit with those things so they stay away? Are we missing time with our families because we are tending to our vanity? And, do you want to really get scared? What are we teaching our children--both our sons and daughters?
If we are to Become Cream we must not be false. It is one thing to look nice and put on makeup and a nice outfit. In fact, I think those things are necessary. We should take care to put our BEST self forward each day, but please---I beg you, not a FALSE self. I believe we are false when we we go beyond merely enhancing our natural beauty to lying about it. We become creatures we are not, thus lying to those around us. Will God ask us what we did with our resources, time and talents and our beauty, our natural beauty? I would rather say my children had music lessons and lots of books and we took family trips and had lots of adventures together--that we spent time together.
I would rather know that I looked more like myself with my makeup off than I did with it on. Something to think about.
To quote Shakespeare, "This above all; to thine own self be true; and it must follow, as the night the day, thou canst not then be false to any man."
This is how we Become Cream.
Note: This is not aimed at women who seek eyelash enhancement due to medical reasons.