I went over to my friend’s house last night to help celebrate their oldest daughter’s birthday. I decided to paint my nails for the occasion and found myself musing at some of the ways we women spruce ourselves up.
It got me thinking, do we do this for the guys? Or for ourselves? Why? What is it about looking pretty that makes us feel pretty?
I’ve heard guys say they love it when women don’t cake on the make up, when they look au naturel. If that’s so, why do they gravitate to the supermodel wannabe’s? Why do so many “manedies” (comedies geared toward men) have those luscious lipped, curvy hipped female bodies flaunting themselves all over? I know of very few real life women who look the way those girls do. Thank goodness! The ones who do, more often than not, have the high-maintenance personality to match.
When I stroked on the deep red NYC Lincoln Center color onto my poorly filed nails, I wasn’t doing it in hopes of attracting some stranger. After all, I was having dinner at my friend’s house, where I already know everybody. I knew from the get-go there would be no Chorus Line moment… you know, the song, “One”. The girl walks into the room and everyone there holds their breath. Yeah. NOT me.
No. I painted my nails (toes, too!), because I wanted to feel pretty. I wanted to feel pretty because that makes me feel happy. And they deserved to have me be happy for them. I can go days without makeup and still feel pretty and worthwhile. I do go out in public with nothing but mousse in the hair and balm on the lips without feeling self-conscious. But last night was different. Last night was in honor of my Second Daughter, and I wanted to let her, and the family, know they are worth the extra effort.
My make-up didn’t complete me, it didn’t open doors or stop traffic. I’m okay with that. Guys love a good-looking doll. Us dolls love looking good. But I think our definitions may be different. To me, I look good when I’m confident and smiling, regardless of what colors my cheeks and nails are. It’s true that scraggy clothes can wear you down, there’s a difference between between being confident and just being comfortable. But I can also pull off a great pair of ripped jeans and pullover sweater… as long as I walk tall. Throw on a pair of heels and anything goes! That’s right… we see you watching us. But it’s not about you. It’s about who we already are: beautiful women in our own right.
Guys don’t understand. They tumble out of the shower and scruff their short hair, toss on a t-shirt, and they’re good to go. They really have no idea what it takes to get glammed up, and I’m pretty sure they’d be shocked to learn everything we do to look good. That’s part of the Secret Society of Girls. It’s why we pack make-up to share when we go out. It’s why our bags are bottomless. We got each others’ backs.
I’m gonna start giving my girlfriends nail polish on a regular basis. It has nothing to do with trying to make improvements. It has everything to do with letting them know, I love you just the way you are.
We’re women. And we’re worth it!