I don’t wear make-up. Well, I wear a little bit, out of necessity, because I am getting old. I wear a light coat of mineral foundation (probably too light to even make a difference) and a smidge of bronzer across my checks and nose, and some kind of lip tint or gloss. That’s it. I never have liked wearing make-up, (although I was that teenager who fought my parents tooth and nail to wear it, and then never did. I did that with a lot of things. What a pain in the ass I was!)
So if I barely wear any make-up, you can guess how quickly I go through it. Not very. Did you know that make-up has an expiration date? It does, and I had exceeded mine so I stopped by Ulta the other day to replace it. I naively thought this would be a simple task, an in-and-out kind of trip. I was wrong.
First of all, it has been so long since I bought foundation that the brand I use doesn’t name the colors the same anymore so I was at a loss as to which is the color that I need. So I asked a sales girl for a little guidance. An innocent enough request, right? Wrong again. The golden-haired make-up maidens that work at these places take their work very seriously and they don’t take kindly to us “occasional users”. Crystal was on to me right away. She knew that if it had been that long since I bought new foundation, what kind of shape must my brushes be in? Her suspicions were validated when she asked me how often I clean my brushes, and I replied, “Clean them?” New brushes in hand, I blindly followed her to another isle while she asked me what I use for a primer. Primer? Are we talking about my make-up habits or painting a house? The look on my face gave Crystal the answer she needed and the next thing I know I have a $40 bottle of un-wrinkle primer in my hand. Feeling very out of my element here and trying desperately to dig out of the hole of shame I have dug for myself, I did what I always do when I am uncomfortable, turn to humor. I joked with Crystal that the only reason I even use the mineral foundation that I use is that the infomercial said it was so natural you could sleep in it. Well, that did it. Not only was Crystal horrified (I thought I was going to have to start CPR on her), now I have caught the attention of another sales girl nearby whose eyes grew as big as saucers when I said that. Crystal takes a deep breath and says to me, with one hand over her heart, “Are you telling me you don’t take your make-up off at night?” I am thinking in my head, “lady, I barely get the stuff on my face everyday, I sure as hell don’t have time to take it off, too!” I just smile at her and pray that a huge hole opens up beneath me and sucks me under or that some other poor woman is having an eye shadow emergency in the next isle over, or, at the very least, my cell phone rings. Something to get me out of here. Nothing. So Crystal hands me a $17 tube of waterless cleanser that my lazy-ass can put on my night stand and says to me, and I kid you not, “My heart hurts to hear that you don’t take your make-up off.” Honest to God, she said that.
Now I have never been good at math, but a quick calculation tells me that the cost of the arsenal of gear I now have in my arms is going to send my husband into orbit, but what was I supposed to do? Crystal’s heart hurts. I don’t want to go through life knowing that someone’s heart hurts because of me. So I thank her for setting me straight and getting me on the path to cleaner, healthier skin and I run to the check-out counter. And I can rest easier knowing that one less make-up maiden has a wounded heart. Because what she doesn’t know, won’t hurt her. (Come on, you don’t really think I am going to start taking my make-up off, do you?)