Thursday, November 13, 2008

And Now For Some Inanity...

Here is my Ode to Lipstick. Yes, that's right, my Ode to Lipstick. (And I can't believe I'm posting it, but I have three posts to put up now, so it will be immediately buried!) I actually wrote this awhile back (maybe a month ago), a very spontaneous stream of consciousness thing, and when I finished, I had to laugh at myself, swearing I would never post it on my blog. Yet here I am, with no camera (temporarily) and no photos except the ones in my files, and one of those photos happens to be this:

Didn't I say recently that I wasn't going to resort to using photos I took of myself in the mirror?!

And this is what I wrote:

Yikes. I normally flee from the front side of the camera. But, today, I took my own picture. I stood right in front of my bedroom mirror and snapped away. I felt foolish-- too foolish to smile. I couldn't even bear to put my whole self in the mirror. It feels practically narcissistic to take my own picture.

It started because I was wanting a new photo for my blog profile. I don't like looking at myself in my mother-of-the-bride dress and corsage every time I open my blog. That's not how I live every day. The quotidian me wears jeans and no makeup except lipstick.

And I must say I do like lipstick. I always have. Growing up, I thought my mom was beautiful in her pretty lipstick. I remember an Alaskan summer, when we were visiting my grandparents, and grandma dressed up to go out with grandpa. She wore a wonderful pleated plaid skirt, a red blouse, high heels, and bright red lipstick. I was in awe and thought she was gorgeous.

I no longer think lipstick alone makes a person lovely, but I wear it much of the time. I just like it. One of my journal entries from this summer made me laugh when I read it recently. In the entry, I-- as I always do-- described what I was wearing at the very moment of writing. In this case, it was my purple nightgown, pink pajama bottoms, fleece slippers, fleece jacket, wild and messy uncombed hair, and lipstick. (What a sight, I'm sure! Melissa says no one looks as eccentric as me in the morning. And it was early morning...) The lipstick was just for me. No one else was going to see me.

Great priorities. Lipstick first. (Not that I do this every day. Really, I don't.) I guess I'm sort of a kindred spirit to Ruth Bell Graham. I read that she once refused to go into an ambulance (when she was about to be rushed to the hospital) until she had applied her lipstick. I have to say I'm not nearly that smitten with lipstick! I pretty much always put on lipstick in the morning, but if it wears off, I don't worry about it. I'm certainly not unwilling to be seen without it. I just like wearing it.

I went somewhere once with friends, and before I got out of the car, I said, "Wait, I want to put on some lipstick." The man said, "Oh, no. You aren't going to wear one of those awful, garish colors, are you?" Knowing he meant anything but clear gloss, I said, "Well, yes I am, and you can just be glad I'm not your wife." (We were joking around, but he really does dislike lipstick, and I really do like it.)

One of my girls called me Earth Mama once, in front of my sister. My sister interjected, "Your mom can't be a hippie because she likes lipstick too much."

A well-known beauty expert once said that red lipstick is classic. The right shade never goes out of style. She said that every woman should have a great red lipstick, but, for some women, deeper pink is their red. That's me. My coloring doesn't look good in true red. I need something softer.

I read somewhere that a person eats a shocking amount of lipstick in their lifetime and that lipstick might be one of the most toxic beauty products of all. Whoa. So, I figure, if I'm going to make lipstick one of my main food groups, I may as well eat the least toxic brand I can find. I haven't run across many non-toxic, all-natural brands of lipstick, though.

The best I've found so far is Gabriel brand. (If you know of a particularly good, all-natural lipstick, let me know!) I do like how Gabriel lipstick goes on, and I like the color I have. I would tell you the name of that color, but my lipstick is in my purse, and my purse is at the Fred Meyer (one-stop shopping center!) customer service desk because I left it in my shopping cart when I was at the store earlier today.

And there is my stream of consciousness Ode to Lipstick. And I have plumbed the very depths of my intellect! :-) And I feel immensely silly...