30 September 2013

Thicker, Longer, Fuller

'Thicker, longer, fuller', characteristics promised by so many ads for both mascara and male potency. I have rather less experience of the latter, but was persuaded to go in for mascara after an imaginative sales assistant at a cosmetics stand complimented me on my 'lovely small eyes' (there being little else to compliment, presumably). Increase the size of those eyes, and there would be a corresponding increase in their loveliness; a little mascara seemed the easiest way to go. But wait! It's true that brushing mascara onto the lashes is marginally easier than the poke-in-the-eye that is the eyeliner pencil, but a heavily blackened set of lashes performs like velcro. Only last week, a woman was admitted to hospital here in the U.K. with her eyes glued shut after years of repeated, heavy application of the cosmetic. It was feared that her sight might be lost; fortunately, prompt surgery saved the situation. Dr. Ashok Patelski, a lash and tear duct consultant at the Royal Eyeball Hospital in Marylebone, London, was quoted as saying, "This is the first time we've seen such a severe case of mascara damage, although there have been an increasing number of problems with false eyelashes and laceration of the cornea from the over-enthusiastic use of eyeliner pencils. Women should be more aware of the risks that can result from using cosmetic products close to the eye."  
 A bad case of 'eyes wide shut', and a cautionary tale for us all. 

15 September 2013

Getting a Pattern

My apologies for this: above is the original version of yesterday's drawing.. 

On the beach: after a period of lying flat on my back on my towel, I sat up to squint at the view for a bit. My companion said, 'You've got a waffle pattern on your back', and indeed I did, a nice clear imprint of the raised waffle weave on the towel. This happens in other contexts, of course, often with less decorative effects. At home, I frequently wake up in the morning with various bedding creases pressed abstractly into my face, a literal crumpling of the skin that lasts until coffee-time at the very least. Perhaps people who sleep on silk don't suffer from this 'problem'; I won't know until I switch from my easy-iron polyester/cotton mix at some point in the future. 
(As ever, there are commercial possibilities here; the Nike or Chanel or MacDonalds logo could be printed into the very flesh of our beings in a transient but intimate branding.) 

13 September 2013

Anglo-Saxon Skin

Now that summer has melted in the face of an onslaught of autumnal rain and gloom, I just wanted to remind myself of the gentle glow I acquired whilst on holiday- a mild blush that was pleasing to my eye despite its comparative pallor. Apparently my French mother was warned (quite justifiably) against marrying my English father, on the grounds that her children would be white.

4 September 2013

Heels, Again

Post-holiday, I am feeling very reluctant to return to the world of vanities. In particular, having spent the summer wearing flats- sandals, ballet slippers, walking shoes, flip-flops- I am especially unhappy at the prospect of squeezing my feet into anything with an incline and a very pointy toe. In fact, I won't, but others will, and I am filled with a grudging admiration for women prepared to teeter through their lives in discomfort for the sake of fashion. It does seem that women wear fantastically high shoes in much the same spirit that hardy adventurers climb mountains- because they're there.
(In the above picture, a brief and rather unscientific survey of designer shoe heels, the heights are given in inches, a very British unit of measurement.  For those of you in the metric world,1 inch = 2.54 cm.)