Saturday, 26 March 2011

Faux Maintenance

I fight a constant battle with myself about being vain. I have the same desire as most women to look attractive, and think its only polite to make the most of what mother nature has given me. I would love to be taller, particularly to have longer (leaner, toned) legs, and could go on to list the improvements i would make to myself if it were possible, but i wont. But these feelings run in tandem with how grateful i am for having my health and mobility, whenever i find myself feeling sorry for myself for not having supermodel proportions or exotic looks it seems i am confronted with someone / something that reminds me how lucky i am, be it someone with a disability or disfiguired through illness or an accident, a heady sense of reality and guilt sweeps over me, most recently with programmes such as my beautiful friends, which features Katie Piper the model horrifically attacked with Acid leaving her permanently scarred. So what i am about to discuss isnt without fear of sounding vacuous or conceited.

I have always faked being high maintenance, a few heated rollers here, an eyebrow tint there, but i have never had the patience nor the energy to be truly polished. Its something i believe either you or or you arent, and i admit, with a heavy heart, I am not. This is something that i am perfectly happy with until i am confronted with someone who is the the epitomy of preened perfection, with manicured nails, perfectly coiffed hair and experty applied make-up, in the presence of someone like this, i feel like a tramp. And the worst of it?? its all my own fault, i know how much time and effort these beautiful creatures put into looking this way, am sure they wouldnt profess to rolling out of bed looking this way, if i was to sacrafice that extra hour in bed to make time for a blow dry, i too could join the church of the high maintenance.

There are 2 arguments for this, one being that its not "cool" to be polished, that a down town look doesnt call for colour co-ordinated nails and tamed follicles, I have never got the chipped nail polish and laddered tights look, i used to dab clear nail polish on my snagged tights to avoid further disaster, so its a mystery to me but i dont necessarily think polished has to mean prissy, nor does being low maintenence mean looking like a bag lady, subtly cared for cuticles have the same effect on me, some of the women i would put in the polished bracket would hate to be thought of as "done up"

I wonder where it all starts, is it a self esteem thing? Maybe the more confident ones are the women who step out wearing minimal make up and flat shoes? or is that an excuse for those of us who dont grin and bear 5" heels for the sake of their leg lengthening benefits? I am a fully fledged daytime flat wearer, I blame London, the tube, the walk to the station, i blame ANYTHING that lets me off the hook, i admit i am ashamed of myself, i spent years mastering the art of walking and driving in perilously high heels, even my boss reminds me i used to be a lot more hardcore when it comes to footwear (she is a 5" heel wearing devotee, who balks at the idea of wearing a ballet pump in public)

It was the sight of Abbey Clancy, snapped shopping 11 days after giving birth to her daughter looking spectacular in spray on jeans, high heeled Isabel Marant boots with her hair  blow dried, that started this debate, if you can be glam days after giving birth you have what it takes.

I have begun to remember my pre pregnancy body & weight a lot more favourably, repeatedly asking the boyfriend if he think i will snap back to my previous shape, as if i looked like Elle Macpherson and i actually did any exercise, whilst i am carrying his child he doesnt dare set me straight, he wouldnt want to burst my dillusional bubble...bless him

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