It occurs to me that, as a female blogger, I am probably in the very small minority of those who have never given you my beauty advice, or talked about makeup, or hair, or anything beauty-related whatsoever (pretty much). In fact, I just peeked through this blog and 50% of it is rambling about travel/food/film/feminism-related miscellany while the other 50% is complaining about commuting or public transportation. (I am going to make a concentrated effort to not talk about transport ANYMORE. Unless something truly shocking happens, like I have an epiphany from talking to the tea cart lady on the East Coast from Leeds to London, or something.)
But I have not talked about beauty. So, without further ado – here are my beauty tips and tricks. All of ’em. Take note.
1. Caffeine. Lots and lots of caffeine.
I would not look even 1% of the person I look like in day-to-day life without the presence of caffeine. In fact, I am pretty sure I would not like a human at all. At least, not a human you’d want to know. I’d probably look like Bilbo Baggins after being refused the ring by Frodo at Rivendell and suffering some sort of spontaneous demonic possession in response. Except I’d look like that all the time, as opposed to just for those two horrifying seconds in Fellowship of the Ring that have been burned into my memory forever.
An actual photograph of me without caffeine, on which Bilbo Baggins’ famous LOTR breakdown was based.
So legitimately afraid am I of being caffeineless, and therefore Bilbo Baggins, I drink it pretty much every single day except perhaps one day of the week. Additionally, the day in which I don’t drink it is always a day at the weekend, and probably the day I’ve decided to lie in bed starkers until 3 PM, so the only thing to see my Bilbo face (can’t read my, can’t read my) will be my poor, psychologically disturbed vagina. Bet you’ve never heard anyone refer to their vagina as ‘psychologically disturbed’ before. You have now.
2. My hands.
I use my hands to put my foundation on my face. I heard that cavemen and reptiles also do this, but not humans. Guess I have a lot in common with cavemen and reptiles and Bilbo, then (see point 1 on this list), and not an awful lot with humans.
I have used a brush in the past and, yes, my face did look marginally better, but my brushes get thick with paint very quickly and then when I try to wash them out I ruin them, which I’m pretty sure is a flaw they’ve built into the product ON PURPOSE so I have to keep giving my money to The Man (aka, the cashier at Boots). The idea that you need brushes to put foundation on your face is, anyway, likely just another pesky capitalist scheme to take my hard-earned dolla for no actually useful product, with no actually useful effects, except a perfect face for, like, two days. I’m not a fucking oil painting. I don’t need a fucking brush. Amirite!? (And not at all bitter that I can’t do a seemingly simple skill that millions of girls globally can!? Amirite!?)
Also, using your hands to put foundation on your face is a great way to wake up in the morning as you are literally slapping yourself, which is a super fun activity, particularly on Friday nights and in the confession booth at church. Sometimes I shout ‘get it together’ while I’m doing it, because sometimes I am running late to work, in a universe in which ‘sometimes’ means ‘always’.
3. I have come to terms with the fact that contouring – along with foundation brushes – is yet another pesky capitalist construct.
I do not ‘get’ contouring. I know it is ‘a thing’,because there are thousands of YouTube videos and articles and GIFs and makeup kits and gushing girls to support that fact, but… I do not ‘get’ it. I have tried and tested it. And this is what happened.
My face was exactly the same except it had powder on it.
My face (STILL) retains some of its puppy fat and is the chiefest reason I’m (STILL) getting ID’ed at the ripe old age of 23. I am longing for the day I wake up with Cruella De Vil’s cheekbones. But, until then, I will not be contouring. I tried it and I just looked like a puppy with powder on. So I do not do it. In fact, I threw my contour kit out of the window while singing the popular 2004 track, ‘Leave (Get Out)‘ by JoJo, which I have kindly embedded in the title for you so you can listen to it, which I know you’re desperately wanting to do. (I am going to go ahead and listen to it right now while shouting insults down to my contour kit on the kerb, brb.)
4. Eat whatever you want and then run like a motherfucker.
Like most girls, I have had periods of my life which have been carefully dictated by diets. I have never been on an extreme or labelled diet, like Atkins or Bootea or whatever, but I have determinedly ventured towards health kicks and meal plans in a bid to not roll into morbid obesity (roll being the operative word).
In conjunction with these diets, I have also come up with a myriad of colourful excuses to shirk said diets, such as the following:
- It’s a Monday, and nobody likes Mondays, and to feel better on a Monday you gotta do what you gotta do. (‘What you gotta do’ meaning eat half a pack of McVitie’s without breathing, or deep-throating an entire chocolate plait before even getting out of bed.)
- It’s Christmas (an excuse which starts directly after Halloween).
- It’s Halloween (an excuse which starts at the beginning of September).
- It’s my birthday (an excuse which runs for the entirety of March and half of April, the aftermath).
- I’ve been so good this week (meaning, I’ve been healthy for two days).
- I’m on my monthly female sexual hiatus.(… Valid excuse. I give myself that one.)
- It’s a Friday, and Fridays are for celebrating, and to celebrate on a Friday properly you gotta do what you gotta do. (‘What you gotta do’ meaning eat two pizzas sandwiched on top of each other, or swallow in one gulp a sharing box of Maltesers on the commute home).
- It’s the weekend, which is a holiday, therefore holiday rules apply.
- Life is short (a wet, feeble excuse that I am ashamed to ever pull out of the bag, but sometimes end up doing in desperate times – aka, if there’s one red velvet cupcake left and I really, really want it).
As a result of my deep and passionate relationship with food – the perfect mixture of adoration, ecstasy, depression, anger, desire, curiosity and anxiety – I have a new philosophy, which is as follows: “eat whatever you want and then run like a motherfucker“. I am proud of this philosophy. I made it up myself. Verbatim. It means exactly what it says on the tin – I eat whatever I want and then I go to the gym and run like a madman for however long I can until I pass out. It’s fantastic and suits me grandly. And it’s the perfect, ultimate excuse for finishing off that last Toblerone if I so desire.
Just to be clear, this is the type of Toblerone I’m referring to.
5. Leave a trail of mistakes wherever you go.
I like to leave something askew with my appearance wherever I go. Often I will get to to work and go to the bathroom and realise I have a massive white line of toothpaste around my mouth like I’ve been guzzling cocaine all morning. I also leave tags on my clothes, the label out, find holes in my tights or create big smudges on my face. It is no extra effort on my part at all to do these things. I do them as easily as I breathe or drool over Nev Schulman while watching Catfish.
My intensely patient friend Fran always sorts me out when we are in the same vicinity and points out my cocaine mouth/label/tags/big smudges on my face, but never the holes in my tights, because she is a kind and not critical friend, and would not alert me to something I couldn’t do anything about there and then.
6. Ask yourself – what would Siouxsie Sioux do?
I cannot remember a time I did not cement Cleopatra-esque amounts of eyeliner around my eyes. It is just something I do. Like write things, or smell every shower gel in the shop three times over before making a final decision (by which point I am slightly high from all the fumes).
I do not know the exact science behind why doing this eyeliner thing makes my face look better, but for some reason, it does. I think it’s something to do with my burning desire to be Siouxsie Sioux, or be Siouxsie Sioux’s best friend, or be Siouxsie Sioux’s muse, or be Siouxsie Sioux’s postman, or be Siouxsie Sioux’s sister, or be Siouxsie Sioux’s PA, or be Siouxsie Sioux’s neighbour, or be in Siouxsie Sioux’s Japanese tribute act. I fucking love Siouxsie Sioux.
Maybe one day I will take all this eyeliner off and we will all discover my eyes are about one millimeter thick both width and lengthways. And then I will become a famous circus freak and will be able to tick another thing off my bucket list. But that would involve actually taking off the eyeliner first and that is not something I am emotionally or mentally prepared to do. Perhaps largely because of Siouxsie Sioux.
7. Dye your hair badly and then allow it to fade badly so it’s about four different colours, at least.
When I am very poor (which is often) I dye my hair myself. Sometimes I do it well. Sometimes I do it not so well. The times I have not done it so well have been catastrophic. One time, I dyed my hair black after it had been ginger but I left ALL of my roots and the surrounding area. It was like a crop circle of ginger. I called it my ginger monk cut. It wasn’t a hot look. For anyone. Not even for monks.
Which leads me neatly to my next point…
8. Make terrible mistakes with your hair all the time, so in the rare moments it actually looks good people fall over or actively vomit from shock.
Like, cut your own fringe. Very often I cut my own fringe, vow never to do it again, and then proceed to do it again about a fortnight later (I am not good at following my own rules, ref. [long] list of food-related excuses in point 4). When I was at school, I additionally got a haircut I have now fondly titled ‘the triangle cut’, which I cannot fully describe to you as I don’t think it exists as nobody has ever had it done except for me, and for good reason.
Making horrible mistakes with your hair is a fantastic idea because then you know what looks good and what doesn’t, and what makes people actively vomit. Also, hair grows back. So it’s no biggie.
9. Moisturise your hands.
I was once told by a man in a club that I have surreally soft hands. In fact, it was all he could say to me all evening. He actually followed me around to tell me, repeatedly. At first I thought he was hitting on me but as the night continued I became more and more concerned that he was actually flagging this as a potential medical issue as opposed to redeeming feature. However, on (sober) reflection I’ve decided that The Great Soft Hand Plague of 2016 is (probably) nothing to worry about. I do moisturise my hands a lot. But it’s more because I have a problem with sitting still so I do it while watching, commonly, Siouxsie Sioux videos or Nev Schulman.
My ‘super hot, ohmygosh!’ beauty regime is as follows:
- Drink coffee every day except on the one day you are alone with your psychologically disturbed vagina;
- Use your hands to paint/slap your face;
- What r contour pls (???);
- Eat whatever you want and then run REALLY REALLY FAST FOR THE LOVE OF GOD;
- Be an aesthetic walking mistake;
- Live by the creed of Siouxsie Sioux;
- Ginger monk cut;
- Induce vomiting through terrible haircut choices;
- Moisturise your hands to achieve supernatural levels of softness.
And that’s how I maintain my Hollywood face and body. Simple.