The Non-Facial Facial

I went for a facial last week. I haven’t had a facial in over twenty years. My pores have got to be as big as Lake Eerie. But I wouldn’t really know, so don’t pack your swimsuits yet.

You can’t tell from this photo, but my face is on fire.

I was expecting to be criticized by the apparent lack of time I spend on my skin.

I pictured in my mind what was going to go down between me and the esthetician:

Her: What do you do to take care of your skin?

Me: Oil of Olay cleanser and moisturizer. Twice a day.

Her: **faints**

But that’s not how it went. More on that in a moment.

When I entered the room, she told me to get undressed. I then had a choice to put on the wrap-around terry-cloth thingy or get under the covers naked.

Since I couldn’t figure out the terry-cloth thingy attachments, I opted for nude. I don’t have a problem being nude when I go for massages, so why should it be different for a facial?

When she re-entered the room, she gasped when she saw the terry-cloth thingy sitting there.

Her: “OH, you chose to go NAKED! Ummm, okaaaeeee then???!!!”

Well damn, lady. You gave me a choice. Don’t make me feel bad about it. I’m pretty certain I’m not the only nude person you “facialed” in your lifetime.

She never asked the question I was fairly certain she’d ask. Instead, my face was immediately accosted by a 50,000 watt light bulb and scrutinized by something that must have been equivalent to the highest powered microscope legally allowed on the market.

Her: Oh honey, do you wax?

Me: I used to but now I don’t because it’s all grey and you can’t see it. 

Her: Oh honey, I’m looking at black hair on your lip. Your face is the first thing people see. You really need to clean this up. And your eyebrows. And oh my, your CHIN!

Me: Wait. What? I don’t have hair on my chin!

Her: Oh honey, you do.

I know I’m starting to go through the change, but come on. Enough WAX-ABLE hair on my CHIN? I’m still trying to deal with this new bit of information.

I may need several hours of psycho-therapy.

She then proceeded to tell me I should get contact lenses. I suppose to be able to see my facial hair. If I need to get contact lenses just so I can see my hairy chin, then I believe I would really need to have my mental stability looked into.

Next on her agenda? Her interest in my diet. I should eat greens. All kinds of different shades. Every chance I get.

The words “I exercise,” came out of my mouth. I don’t know why.

“Oh, honey, eating greens is MUCH better than exercise. How can you expect to lose weight?”

Come on, lady. I’m not THAT fat! I may be nude under here, but you didn’t actually get a peek.

The insults kept on coming. When she told me I don’t want to look like my mother, I nearly took my naked self out of her room.

Instead, I informed her that she didn’t even know my mother, and told her I know how to eat thankyouverymuch. I’ve been eating since 1967, after all. A lot longer than her. But of course she may just look younger. Because you know, she gets facials…and eats greens.

Anyway, she could give me a nice wax right then if I’d like. But it will cost me $15 per section. 

Yup $45 to wax parts of my face. Oh, what the hell. I was having a day at the spa with my girlfriends. Suddenly I heard myself say it. “Ok. Sure. Go for it.”

Off came the hair.

Of course, I’m very sensitive to waxing and so my face looked like a flaming cherries jubilee for three days. But hey. I have no facial hair at the moment. And that was the purpose of that exercise after all. I suppose I should call this a “Win.”

The next item on her list to conquer was the issue of dryness. “Oh honey, your skin is so dry. For $25 I can moisturize you and it will be wonderful. You’ll feel like a new woman.”

Yes. You heard that right. Twenty-five dollars to slather on some lotion. It could have been Ponds Cold Cream for all I knew.

I sat there trying to quickly calculate this twenty-five minute “facial” that really was no facial at all. I initially laid on her spa bed for $75. We were, at that moment, approximately eighteen minutes and $145 into it.

Again, I heard myself say it. “Ok. Sure. Go for it.”

I should have had my tongue cut out. It would have been cheaper.

As she slathered on the $25 moisturizer that I was hoping was not Ponds Cold Cream, she informed me that she had no time to give me an actual facial.

But she could massage my hands and arms.

It’s a miracle. 

If this ordeal and exchange of whatever the hell I just paid $175 for, including the 20% gratuity this “spa” took upon themselves to gift this judgmental, pushy, wax-hungry, over-moisturizing member of the gestapo, wasn’t so comical, I’d be pretty pissed off.

Instead we all laughed it off at the hotel bar with some margaritas and my hairless, red face. Shall I mention that I had a lime in my drink? I think my esthetician would have been proud.

Next time I’ll stick to tweezers and my Olay. Although, that place did smell really good. Oh, what the hell. I’ll throw in a lavender candle, too. I think I have one in my junk drawer.

Medieval Torture?

Inflict torture on our bodies.  That’s what we women do.  All in the name of Beauty.  Yesterday, as I was sitting in The Threader’s chair, with tears running down my face, little hairs itching my nose and a strong urge to punch the threading broad in the face and take her stupid floss and shove it where the sun don’t shine, I started wondering why we do these things to ourselves.  After I was finished tormenting myself, I walked around looking like I tried to set fire to my face:

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(There I go looking like Droopy again.  It’s uncanny, isn’t it?)

Then I got to thinking of all the other things we do for beauty.

Bikini Wax.  I did that.  Once.  About 16 years ago.  On the floor of the living room of my best friend’s apartment.  With 2 towels.  One in my mouth to prevent someone from calling the cops.  And one underneath me so when I bled to death, at least her carpet would be saved.  In retrospect, I probably should have gone to a professional.  It was likely equivalent to asking a butcher to cut my hair (sorry P, I know you tried).  And you women who go full-out and do that brazilian wax number?  If I wore a hat, I’d tip it to you.  You are some brave chicks.  There isn’t enough Holy Water in Jerusalem to get me to do that EVER.

Hair Coloring.  All those chemicals that get rubbed into our scalps.  I won’t highlight my hair but once or twice a year because I’m afraid of developing a brain tumor.  My stylist thinks I’m nuts.  But I remember when Jackie O died.  Everyone kept saying it was because she colored her hair too many times.  That totally freaked me out.  I’d rather walk around looking like Lillian Munster.

Fake Nails.  We ingest more chemicals during that process.  That shit seems so toxic to me.  Yes, I used to go get fake nails put on back before I was married.  But now I’m scared to death of all that.  I’m good with my nubs.  Besides, I can’t really hurt anyone, particularly The Threader, with what I have rockin’ at the end of my phalanges.

Botox, boob jobs, nips, tucks.  It’s endless.  All for what?  So we can look good, of course.  People don’t want to look at our hairy faces, sagging foreheads or breasts that wobble to and fro’.  What’s wrong with embracing our natural beauty?  Apparently, this chick doesn’t agree.  She looks much better now, don’t you think?

Jocelyn-Wildenstein-“Cat-Woman”-Before-After-Plastic-Surgery
Her “before” picture is to the right, believe it or not.  She sure was ugly once.

In the Bush

I have bushy eyebrows. Bushy to the point where a weed wacker is in order.  They are thick and dark. Even though I am naturally blonde.

My mother was kind enough to hand these furry beasts down to me.  Here is her senior class picture:

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I know.  They don’t look bad.  That’s because she shaved them completely off and this is the regrowth.  If you look closely, you can see the bald, uneven spots.  She was also blind in one eye that day.  She says that was the start of a lifetime of migraines.  Or she slipped with the razor.

Here I am at my bushiest:

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My hair looks dark because I am 8 months pregnant.  I also had pin straight hair before her conception. So now in addition to straightening, I have to dye to achieve the ‘before” look.

Not too bad from this vantage point.  But on closer inspection you would have noticed that they are growing up, down and all around.  My mother pointed that out to me about 14 years ago.  She should talk.

So, I started tweezing.  I plucked the freaking hell out of those bush balls.   I didn’t pluck them all the way off, but I may as well have.   They were baldy, sparse and they didn’t match.

My plucking turned to waxing which turned to threading.  No, threading does not entail people threading fake eyebrows on, which is what I thought it was when I first heard the word.  It involves 2 pieces of floss-like string.  This string is twisted and used to pluck out a line of hair.  The pain ranks right up there with scrubbing your face with an acid wash.  I choose to thread because believe it or not, it’s less abrasive than waxing.  I don’t walk around looking like I have diaper rash on my face for 5 days with threading, like I did when I waxed.

Anyway, I went too far those years ago.  I see women in Hollywood with beautifully shaped eyebrows and know I will never have them.  Because I plucked my hair follicles to the point of murder. I am green with eyebrow envy.

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I would just about sell my first born for these babies. Just about.

You know where my brow follicles seem to have appeared?  Anywhere between my neck and nose.  If I catch myself in the sunlight looking in the mirror, I am praying for some tweezers.  Isn’t it funny how as we age the hair on our head thins, but the hair on our face, chin and neck thickens?  Yes.  And I’m laughing all the way to the electrolysis.