So my sister got a call from an old friend this week asking her to host a Mary Kay party so she could do a demonstration. My sis, K., got really excited and called us all up, so I ended up at her apartment last night for a Mary Kay party. Now, those of you who know me know that I don’t wear a lot of makeup. But I thought, eh, what the hell! It’s free!
So I went. It was fun, and interesting. K., our brother’s girlfriend B., and our cousin E. and her friend (F.) all came. We were sitting around beforehand and eating chips and dip, when F., who is athletic and stick thin, said something about how she “had better eat all this dip now because next week she was going on Weight Watchers.” We all replied with mild outrage at the thought, saying that she was so thin, and that’s just absurd. She replied that she wanted to do it so that she could control what she ate. She says she eats “mostly carbs and no vegetables.”
This, sadly, launched a whole discussion about how Weight Watchers was the best diet. I put in my two cents, saying “I think the best diet is NOT dieting.” to which someone said, “Well, Weight Watchers is good because it teaches you how to eat.” I responded, “Hell, I know how to eat. No problems learning that one. I can eat just fine. See?” And proceeded to eat my cookie. My comment about the best diet being NOT dieting merely started everyone into justifying why Weight Watchers was so good. Ugh ugh ugh. What can a fat girl do?
I sorta just sat there and tried to debate a little against it all, but it just got tiresome. So I just listened. I thought it was really absurd. And sad. And I didn’t know what to do.
Next thing I know, we’re all sitting down around my sister’s table with mirrors and makeup in front of us. The Mary Kay consultant (we’ll call her MK, hee hee), is a sweetie, an really believes in this stuff. And thus she began her presentation. Right away she talked about how great Mary Kay is for women, which I believe, and how their sales are good, and make women millionaires. She said:
“The thing about Mary Kay is that, even in times of economic crisis, like right now, our sales are still booming. In times of economic crisis, sales boom on three things: alcohol, cigarettes, and makeup.” We all “Oooo” and “ahhhh” at that statistic. She continued: “Think about it, if I just lost my job, I’m gonna drink, I’m gonna smoke, and I’m going to want to wear makeup to my job interviews.” Interesting. And a little sad.
But I have to admit, their products are good. We did all the cleansing, and moisturizing, and then put on their quick day to day makeup. Their foundation was light (though way more than I’m used to), their eye makeup fantastic, and their lip treatment (including first a scrub for lips that exfoliates your lips, and an oil-based lip balm that lasts hours) was heaven. MK was so great, and really knew what she was selling. She told me afterwards that she really does love the product, and the fact that she can make money off of sharing it with others sincerely makes her happy.
I also got some interesting beauty tips:
1. You should always wash your face and neck in an upwards, outward motion, to prevent wrinkles.
2. For your eyes, you should always clean in an inward, downward motion to prevent crows feet.
3. You should change your mascara once every 2-3 months to avoid getting pink-eye, etc.
Anyway, my sister was delighted. She bought a ton of stuff (after getting a hosting discount). Today she sent an email to my mother saying that my mom should “see how beautiful she looked” and that she really loved hosting a party like that. E. and F. also bought some stuff.
Now I think this post might display some conflict in feelings on my part. And here’s why: I’m all for makeup. I’m all for enhancing what you consider your positive attributes. I’m all for a little bit of glam for something special. But I feel immensely sad that my sister, and a lot of women, need makeup to boost their self image. And it falls back to the usual suspects: low self esteem, trying to fit into an unreal ideal. And it makes me sad. I loved the Mary Kay demonstration, but I hated that my sister has never sounded happier, felt more beautiful, than the day after she bought, and therefore the first day she wore, all this Marry Kay makeup.
I think we need a message to women. One where we’re all clean-faced, fat, and happy. But then, if a bit of makeup makes you feel better about yourself, and how you look, more power to you. I support anything that makes people happy. I just wish that the superficial weren’t it.