My Thousand-Dollar Face

An appointment with a makeup artists prompts a barrage of products and a some soul searching.

by Jan • Member { View Profile }
Photograph: iStock

Against this backdrop, let’s see. Should I spend more than a thousand dollars on skin care and makeup stuff that will make me feel a bit prettier for a moment in time, or should I put the money toward replacing salt water-destroyed outdoor a/c units? Or taking down an uprooted tree? Or replacing drowned contents? Any real decisions, here?

The truth is, even if Sandy had not happened, and even if we were well off, the cost-benefit analysis still would not have swung in favor of my thousand dollar face. This experience (re)opened my (heavily mascara’ed) eyes to the appalling, over-the-top products and tactics of a largely unnecessary industry that preys on insecurities and fantasies (held primarily by the young and the aging) and the belief that the next jar will hold the answer … to everything. I also realize that this is not exactly a groundbreaking revelation. It has been the case since well before the phrase “hope in a jar” was first coined.

I wonder if we might be approaching a time, though, when each of us, as women, can re-evaluate priorities, and encourage other women to put things in a more balanced perspective. The odds against this are great. It is an indisputable fact that in recent years, the numbers and types of beauty and skin care products have grown exponentially. Entire magazines and hundreds of web sites are devoted to them. Every reality show personality (most of whom I wouldn’t be able to pick out of a lineup) now has to have her own fashion, cosmetics and fragrance lines. 

Heaven forbid, I am not saying, “don’t use makeup or care for your skin.” I am saying there is no reason on earth to have to use ELEVEN products on your eyes or spend upward of $100 on a skin cream. (And that’s for the so-called moderately priced lines. Check out the really high-end lines.)

Okay, preachy part over. And just so you know I’m not a dried out old stick, I actually had fun with my Thousand-Dollar Face session. Kind of like my 2-year-old grandniece has fun playing a Disney Princess for a day. Just don’t believe in it and for God’s sake, don’t buy into it. Do take advantage of the free sessions the next time a brand’s National Makeup Artists fly in. Just hold onto your perspective. And your wallet.

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