Tuesday, 29 October 2013

How private is your vanity?

My Spanish cohorts at the course that I have just done in the Canaries set me thinking about how we approach beautifying ourselves in every day life.
How much time do you allow for general titivating and would you or could you spend more?
I am lazy, I have to confess I can go days without brushing my hair, when I do remember, it is usually because I am brushing one of the dogs and I don't mind sharing me-time (and brushes) with them.  I wear make up when I go out in the evening (probably 3 times a month) and never in the day, as I often shower a couple of times and no mascara is actually waterproof.  I dye my roots when the roots are showing, I wait till I start to look really grey around the edges so it is about every 6 weeks.  I go to the hairdressers every 3 months, but I hate it so try to get away with every four months if I can.  I usually fake tan while I am waiting for home hair dyes to take and when I go out in the evening. And that's it, it is quite slovenly, I probably don't even manage 20 minutes a day on average.  But is this complete lack of care the ultimate vanity? Is it because I think that I don't need to bother?  I'm fairly sure that it's not that, it is more like exam revision, I'd rather take my chances on not preparing than do my best and fail.
These were pics that I took from the only night that I 'dressed up' and wet hair, no make-up and jeans didn't really cut it with crowd that I was going with! The top is one of the amazing hand embroidered beautifully intricate, wedding kameez that I bought a while back.  I think my love of clothes that are a 'statement' and wear me, is precisely because I am so lazy about personal grooming, with any luck you'll be so dazzelled by my sequin and beading you won't see the rest.

My Spanish friends would be horrified, since from what I can gather, most of their free time centres around looking good, and they really put the effort in.
Their day starts at around 6am when they wake and do housework, then they go to work for 8- 8.30 and work until 2, they are free from 2 until 5, this is usually time for the gym/hairdresser/spa and then back to work from 5-8 and dinner any time from 9pm onwards (often out and fully 'dressed' and made up) and bed by midnight.  This is a 'normal' day, to me it seems exhausting.

The key thing about the 'vanity' time is that it is extremely private, rarely do they go with friends and it is never talked about with the men in their lives, who think their svelte frames and perfect skin and hair are effortless.
I was wondering if we are not more honest about our indulgences in the UK.  We go to manicure bars where we hang out together, we meet at the gym for coffees, we'll tell the family that lunch will be late as we can only get a hair appointment at midday etc
And I wonder if honesty is the best policy here. I know that my husband is quite suspicious of any kind of vanity time.  He's OK about anything that involves nudity and could lead to nookie, ie fake tanning and all over moisturising, particularly if oil is involved and it's not the aromatherapy essences that he likes.
But anything else he sees as a waste of time, misleading, possibly even the physical equivalent of lying.
He's also not keen on anything that takes up time and he sees as a pointless activity, hours spent shopping on-line and shopping generally if nothing is 'needed'
And of course he's not wrong, there are many more worthwhile things that I could be doing, but is he right that vanity time is time wasted?
How much time do you dedicate to how you look? Would you feel guilty about spending more time or is it just that you can't be bothered? How much do you share or are there beauty regime things that you keep quiet from your nearest and dearest?


  1. Oh gosh that Spanish regime sounds exhausting to me, you'd think they would look like a bunch of old hags ha ha! I don't put make-up on if I'm not going out or expecting visitors, it's nice to give your skin a break! I get my hair done every 6 weeks and try and have a sneaky blow dry if I have to go to town,I hate washing my own hair x

    1. You have beautiful hair so it is worth the effort, mine is always thin straggly rats tails so I resent every moment that I spend on it!

    2. Oh I'm so lazy, I don't brush my hair every day or wear make up, I only make 'the big effort" if I'm going somewhere which is pretty rare these days. Mum however is up early putting in her rollers and putting on her make up every day - we are opposites when it comes to vanity/grooming.

      Oh do you know of any really good dress hire shops? I do actually have a big night out to go to and can't justify splurging £900 on a dress that I'll never wear again.

    3. I don't I am afraid, all the online ones promise great things and then seem to stock only Jovani dresses! I wonder if you emailed someone on ebay who was selling and offered to return in pristine condition, it might be worth a go, as some of the expensive stuff sits on there for months!


I would love to hear from you and quite happy for some lively debate so feel free to say what you think! ....