A few years ago I realized I really shouldn’t spend so much money on make-up. In actuality, I didn’t have the money to spend anyway and felt it was one of those places to cinch the budget a little tighter. Then we had our third child, and suddenly I felt like I needed to beautify myself. I bought hot rollers to curl my long hair, and I spent about $50 on make-up. Less than a month later, I had cut all my hair and was using less than half of the products I had bought. Lesson: don’t shop with the hormones flaring!
So, another few years have passed, another child, another haircut, and now I’m hearing these ads on the radio. “Eighty percent of moms admit to letting themselves go,” say the ads. Apparently a beauty company conducted a survey and have partnered with our local mega store chain to convince us mothers that we really need “to put beauty on our list” of things to do. I agree . . . in a way.
Self-care is one of the greatest assets a mother can have. A bubble bath, some chocolate, great music, a clean house, a favorite outfit — whatever works for you and keeps you from feeling like you’re on the edge. “If mama ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy,” was a great quote from my uprearing that I’ve brought into our household. Mothers do have a stressful job, and like everything else, we have to have coping mechanisms. If taking the ad’s advice and buying some Brand S body products will do it for you, go for it. Maybe my Walgreen’s splurge a few years ago kept me from going into postpartum depression. Seventy bucks is cheaper than therapy and make-up less addictive than drugs.
I don’t mean to sound flippant about this. Many women feel they are beautiful when they have make-up on. I like to apply some powder, blush and liner when I’m going out for a special occasion, too. But I know that’s just for me. I feel a little more “dressed up.” On every day occasions, I get to ask myself every morning if I feel beautiful. Sometimes I have to tell myself, nearly remind myself that I am a beautiful woman. I smile to myself in the mirror. Why do I feel so surprised when people say I have a beautiful smile or that I have a wonderful energy or such a beautiful face? Inner beauty is a hard thing to disguise and is the cheapest blemish remover I know.
Do put beauty on your list. Find your beauty and how best to nurture yourself so it will glow so brightly you couldn’t hide it if you wanted to. A shower daily is nice, too, but we didn’t need a radio ad to remind us of that one. Lesson: stick to listening to NPR.