beauty school dropout

“missed your midterms and flunked shampoo….”

Here’s a little public service announcement: Don’t use your flatiron to heat up wax strips.

Or if you do, at least remember that you did it and clean it off before you use it on your hair six months later.

It’s a known fact that I am not well versed in the ways of female beautification. I still remember the first time I had my eyebrows waxed at the hair salon. I thought, “Wow, if only I had known this secret before I got married–then maybe I would hang up some of my wedding photos in our house.” Seriously, if you ever doubt that love is blind, you need only refer to my wedding photos.

It was the same story with hair spray, which I did not discover until my daughter’s first ballet recital when it was listed as a mandatory item on her costume list. One day, I was particularly taken with the results of my own hair so I used my daughter’s hairspray (this would seem less pitiful if she wasn’t 6 at the time). I was so taken with the results of that experiment that it is now mandatory to stand in the mirror and spray toxic fumes all around my head every time I have a date night. I don’t even care if I’m cementing a really bad hair day–all that matters is that it won’t move. And that is just fascinating.

So rarely, as in every six months, I wake up feeling the need to be girly on just an average day. This morning it all started because it was cold when I got out of the shower. Normally I let my hair dry naturally and then I just go with whatever it turns out to be. You can imagine I get a lot of compliments that way. But this morning I was cold, so I dug around in the my bathroom drawer and found the blow dryer.

Drying my hair resulted in a sort of half curly, half frizzy, half straight mess. I had already invested valuable ‘sitting around doing nothing’ time filing my nails, so I figured, what the heck, I’ll go all out and use the flat-iron to straighten my hair. Then I’ll enter a local beauty pageant.

The only problem is I forgot that the last time I used the flat-iron was when I had that brilliant idea to self-wax my legs last April. Yeah. We won’t even go into how that turned out. The only upside was not shaving my legs for weeks while I waited for the hair to be just the right length. Everyone enjoyed how that looked in shorts.

So this morning I heated up my flat-iron, and while I was waiting I even put on makeup–something I usually only reserve for a big night out. Then I stretch out this big piece of gloriously clean hair right in the front and….well, I’m still picking the wax out.

A wise woman (named Brownie, for real) used to always tell my sister and I that beauty is only skin deep. She also told us never to rub our face dry with a towel, always pat it dry. Her daughter was a model for Leggs pantyhose and she liked to mention this a lot, along with many other helpful beauty tips.

I mention this only to illustrate that sometimes when you’re doling out advice to kids, it doesn’t really stick.

Check out those eyebrows! That is 1993 or 1994. But I’d love to have that smooth skin again. If only I had listened to Brownie.

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