Did you do your homework? Is your skin shiny and dewy? Are you slurping your fiber shakes and clamoring for more material suggestions?
Fear not, mon amie. Here’s the scoop:
Now, I realize that not everyone has the access to professional discounts that I do, being a card-carrying member of Actors’ Unions – which means that basically, for very high annual dues, I get discounts at hair and make-up places- so I’ve put together some other very affordable and worthwhile treats.
I’ve mentioned on my blog that I have a lot of grey hair that was formerly black, and I am too vain to let it go all salt-and-pepper on my ass just yet. I have to dye my roots every two weeks. I no longer have $400 extra dollars to spare, as I have a child that requires therapeutic intervention, and it’s really all about her remediation and not my roots, so I do my hair myself. Which worries me. I worry that I will have a bird’s nest of blue-black cotton candy that the ladies in our church used to sport. I now- praise the Lordy Lord – useClairol Perfect 10, which, really, truly is Nirvana in a box. It dyes hair in 10 minutes, has low ammonia, so it doesn’t stink or burn your scalp, and has really, truly glossy, rich color. The secret is to only do the roots, ladies, and then “pull” the color through the rest of your hair at the last minute – only for 1-2 minutes. Rinse and shampoo, and make sure that you use the awesome glossing conditioner that comes with the packet. Better yet, it’s cheap, and every fashion magazine this month is offering $5 coupons – so scour your Marie Claire this month for your $8 dye job. Dreamy, this stuff is. (It’s got me talking like Yoda, for Chrissakes!)
Now, for my Spring face. I use Bare Minerals, as most of us do, and I swear by Lancome L’Extreme mascara. People frequently ask me if I am wearing false eyelashes, and nothing gives me more joy. I realize that not everyone likes to look like they are sporting stage make-up, but there is something in the artifice that I enjoy so deeply. I also blush to tell you that I use Prestige liquid black glitter liner, which is perfection if used properly. Liquid liner is like a loaded gun; one must almost have a license to wear it without looking like Priscilla Presley circa 1966. The trick is to get the liner as close to the lash line as possible, and to keep the eye open while applying. I would not advise this maneuver after your morning coffee. I use MAC Mineralize in Warmed all over the face, to sculpt and to get some color going – I realize that I am of the Latina persuasion, so I warn all of you Anglo-Saxons to go easy on the Warmed. It’s not for everybody, but for me –Jaysus – it’s a good 10 years and 10 pounds off. My Gay even sneaks a swipe once in a while! (I can always tell when he emerges from our bathroom looking like he took a mini Bermuda vacation) I use L’oreal HIP Cream Shadow paint in Secretive – which provides a nice neutral canvas, as well as being exceptionally long lasting. Wear is everything to an actor. I still do my drag as if I’m doing Aida and plan to sweat in a 50 pound costume. Last, I use Bobbi Brown’s Nude glitter gloss– the whole effect is very Capri, circa 1960, with a little Raquel Welch and a little Barbarella thrown in. Total make-up time: 6 minutes.
Okay, Wonderfriends. You have 10 minute hair and 6 minute faces. You have your skincare and your digestive system all worked out.
Now, now, stop your belly aching. I know many of you pooh-pooh the notion of fragrance, but truly, it is the signature that you leave, hopefully, not too cloyingly.
I have thought about this very carefully, and while some of us favor the libidinious musks and woods and deep berries, I realize that there is something dirty about these scents that might not be appropriate for PTA meetings, IEPS, Speech Therapy, or even, yes, teaching Drama. I have therefore chosen the perfect summer scent: Kai.
It evokes summer and freshness, is very light and subliminally sexy. I like it because I wear it – it does not and could not wear me. It’s beachy and light, and makes you want to wear linen and a tiny cotton t-shirt without a bra, and toss your head back and collect beach glass. Trust me on this one. Yes, even Kyra, who professed that most fragrances make her gag. I believe that Kai would have even our staunchest perfume critic feeling like a goddamn spring zephyr.
That was painless, wasn’t it? Is your head spinning? Are you still there? Have you run from your screens, overloaded by the materialness of it all?
I tell you true, Wonderfriends. The reason for all of this – this- this – pruning and preening and pampering? You might think me hopelessly vain and shallow.
And I would agree with you.There is a deeper reason. In my training as an actor, we were drilled to be ready to present, to “be on time and know your lines.” For me – I need to get up
early and tend to my ablutions so that I can be present and ready, game face on, to tend to my children, my students, my mate. Otherwise, I go into that sweatpant-pajama bottom-land-of-elastic-waistbands- territory that I have fought so hard to emerge from. So I buff and paint and wax. And sometimes I don’t. But just that little-self care – that whiff of a lovely perfume, or the mastery of an eyebrow arch? It tells me that somebody cares. Me. I care.
Go forth. Stun them with your devastating beauty.
I’ll be looking for you.