Feminine fripperies: our vanities change over the years

Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec:_Woman_at_her_toilette_1889

Not so long ago, I had to have my photo taken for my drivers license renewal. I rummaged around in my purse, found some lipstick, and put it on. I have never been particularly photogenic and things have not improved with age, so I decided to take whatever help I could get. The lipstick was there only because it was a gift from my “make-up advisor.”

Turns out that I had to take off my glasses for the photo, but I most definitely did NOT have any mascara in my bag! Unlike passport photos, neither did I have the option of going to 3 or 4 different photographers until I got a photo I was willing to travel with. So I won’t be sharing my drivers license with you.

Roadside stand, Panama

I have no objection to makeup, and wore it in the distant past when I needed it less. But now, I prefer to face the world with the real me on display. I hate the idea of having to apply my face before being seen in public. I’d rather that people see it every day and get used to it. Besides, past a certain age, I think it sometimes draws attention to the flaws! Same for jewelry. I love these beaded collars, but if I showed up in the office wearing one, I would attract unwelcome scrutiny to my neck (not to mention my common sense). Unless, of course, I wore bright red (or purple? black? green?) lipstick as a distraction. Hmmm. That seems like a fun idea but not for me.

Even so, I do have some standards and try to keep the facial hair minimized and the teeth under caps, and I’ve taken up scarves.

On the topic of jewelry, here are some compelling arguments against acquiring much of it. However, if someone had showered me with diamonds and emeralds I would have worn them in this photo. (I was truly shocked and disappointed that it didn’t happen on MY RECENT BIRTHDAY!!!!!)

I don’t object to others enjoying makeup, jewellery or fashion bling. In fact, I love the artistry, but I can admire it better on someone else’s face rather than my own.

I happen to have different vanities – for example, a personal blog HAS to be recognized as a vanity.

One thought on “Feminine fripperies: our vanities change over the years

  1. When my grandson was little, he noticed his mother getting tarted up to go out and asked her why she was putting on her “make-believe”–it stuck, and is evermore accurate a description for me as the years go by… I’m still wearing make-believe! Enjoyed the post. MM

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