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Do I Look OK?

Maybe I haven’t changed, even after all these years. What am I talking about? Let’s come clean here: I still care about the way I look. Today is no exception: I have a formal dinner tonight, and I have prepared everything with military precision. Because I want to make a good impression. Because somehow I feel that not trying my best would be letting people down. Because that’s what I do. Because that’s what all women do, right? So here is the check list of the day:

Manicure: check (thanks to my lovely daughter- try putting nail polish on your right hand by yourself if you are right-handed)
Clutch bag: check
Shoes: check (boy do they look good!)
Blow-dry: check (homemade I am afraid)
Make-up: check (still homemade)
Dress: check (From Bali. An oldie but goodie. I just love it. It was love at first sight, I assure you).

The whole event required days of preparation (waxing anyone?), because just having 5 minutes to myself must be planned like, a week in advance, and I must admit that, yes, I am stressed. Even after all this time. I don’t understand why. I thought that I would care less with age, but actually the opposite is happening: every detail counts now. And, once again, the pressure to look good is on me. Why do I feel this way? Why do most women feel this way? Or maybe it is a French thing? Men are so fortunate: they can show up in a suit and a tie and that’s it, job done. Women are the unsung heroes of formal dinners: we have to, well, think of everything. We have to pretend it was all nice and easy, and took only a couple of minutes. As if it did. Does anyone really believe it? I suddenly feel tired. And of course, we have to smile. Of course we do. Do you know what? I wish I were a guy sometimes. There it is. 

So why do I still care? What ‘s wrong with me? I wonder. After all, I am who I am and I am never happier than in my old jeans and without any make-up on. But I am running 
late. I can hear my husband asking me why I am late..again. What can I say? It just takes longer for us. That’s the way it is. And thats the way it always will be!
Muriel – A French Yummy Mummy In London
  • You go girl! I hear you loud and clear. However, I must admit I am faster than my husband to get ready — he still primps even as an ‘old’ man and I am happy for that.

    • Faster than your husband? I must have done something wrong. Sigh.

  • Yes, we take longer because we have to apply the make-up, etc., but I am guessing that there are some men that wish their looks could be improved by something like make up. I am actually grateful to have such things to keep me from looking old and tired!

    • Really? Sometimes I wish i could go out…au naturel!

  • Be RAW Muriel… like ur WORDS !!! 🙂

  • I am letting the team down bc I wait for my husband…

  • I can’t stand getting dressed up! It stresses me out so much. But I have no idea why! I just find remembering all those different things – hair, make up, all the different bits of the outfit, shoes, accessories – exhausting. Sounds like you’re more of a pro at all of that than me! Bet you looked fabulous.

    • Thank you! And yes, it is incredibly stressful, isn’t it?I will never get it. Why do we put so much pressure on ourselves again?

  • Oh, Muriel, you are wrong. Men care how they look. They just don’t agonize over the decisions… (unless they are teenagers on their first date 🙂 )

    • I am sure that they do. It is just that they have less things to do, I suppose. And I won’t even tok about walking in high heels…

  • Muriel I think you just spoke for every woman who spends time stressing about a formal event. I think it’s because we think everyone has such high expectations of us that we put those imagined expectations on ourselves for real. I will tell you though, my boyfriend often takes longer than I do! He really does care about how he looks which is a blessing in that he ‘gets’ why it can take me a while and a curse because he hogs the bathroom mirror.

    • Seriously, what are guys doing in the bathroom when they don’t have to wax or apply make up, or blow-dry their hair? I don’t get it. And how do you stay so positive? I would be mad at him!

  • Nothing like that here, I’m afraid. I’m a tomboy through and through, and generally the more time I put into getting ready, the worse I look. I throw on a dress, drag a comb through my hair and exceptionally put on some mascara and a tad of lipstick.. and my Frenchman counts his blessings that I’m not still in jeans and a t-shirt. Hope you had a lovely evening out!

    • It is all about expectations, maybe. we French women have been told to go out immaculate. maybe you are right, and I need to be a bit more British here.

  • I’m down to 45-60 minutes, tops. 🙂 That includes shower, hair, and make-up (if I bother).

    • That’s good. I can’t do anything with less than 90 minutes. How do you do it?

  • I have to admit. I spend more time now fixing my face, than I did 10+ years ago. It could be because one or both of these: I’m older now and find more lines and dark spots to conceal; or, I am more confident now and don’t mind being noticed. Whatever it is, you have to consider the possibility that you’re not doing this for others, right? It’s just nice to look good for ourselves and ultimately feel good. The good news is, with or without makeup, at least we can say we look okay, even maybe great! ;-))

    • I’m with you totally on this one Joy. It’s whatever it takes to make us feel good about ourselves, and ultimately it is a self confidence thing. At 62 I spend less time than I used to, but I still take care of what the Creator gave me! 🙂

    • It jut never stops, doesn’t it? Maybe it is part of being a woman. And maybe you are right: if it means that we care, it can only be good, right?

  • ALK

    And all of us guys have to do is jump into the monkey suit and look amazing! I don’t envy you, ladies!!

    • Muriel Demarcus

      I wish I was a guy sometimes. So much easier, right?

    • I know, it’s a hard life for us…

      • ALK

        It most certainly is!!! I was sincere and totally admire the effort you ladies go to!