It’s the season for social events, and that means the body upkeep needs to be on point at all times. This isn’t always easy! When you work long hours and you spend most of your time in the office, the chance and the will to keep your manicure up and keep your legs hair-free can be so tiring.
Being a woman has a lot of positives, but the drawbacks of maintenance can be so hard. There’s nothing wrong with being a little high maintenance about your appearance, but if you’re so used to letting it all go for the sake of staying stress-free, then the social season can be a little daunting. Not only do you want to have the perfect little black dress to slink into each party with, you want to look good while you wear it. It’s not all fitness and workouts, though. Think about your hair, your skin, your hair removal routines, your makeup – it’s a lot of maintenance for a season of jolliness and parties, right?
Being a woman is not easy when the expectations all around us mean that we feel we have to be made-up, well-groomed and looking beautiful at all times. The sheer work involved and hours in the day that it takes to look consistently ‘done’ can be tiring, emotionally draining and expensive! The trends change so often that keeping up with them is hard, especially when you finally get used to contouring and straightening on a daily basis.
The more we age, the more we have to add to our beauty and haircare regimes to stay current and youthful – it’s exhausting. It doesn’t matter how many articles on how to soothe irritation after waxing you read, you still have to get that waxing done in the first place! There are a lot of hard parts about being female, and maintenance is just one of the many things that make life a little difficult. So, what ARE the hardest parts about being a woman in a world that expects so much from us?
When you have a short ‘do, hair care is fairly easy. For those with long, flowing locks it’s a little more complicated. Once you’ve battled your way through the finding the right shampoo and conditioner for your hair, you have to work out how many times a week you can manage to wash it without damaging it. Establishing a washing routine that keeps your hair healthy and looking lustrous and thick is hard, but once you’ve done it you have to turn to the next task: drying. Most of the time spent on your hair is spent drying it, and the money spent on the heat-protection products and the time consumed doing it means that it’s the chore most women dread. Those with the extra cash among us are smart and schedule in thrice-weekly blow dries to avoid this task altogether. The rest of us? We struggle on with our GHD’s and hair dryers!
Okay, we say bathing, but how many working women or busy mothers – or both – get a chance to slip into a hot, relaxing bubble bath every single day? Not many of us. Instead, we make do with a quick shower in the morning and hope the hot water doesn’t cut out in the middle of the wash. Not everyone gets a chance to shower or bath every single day, and it’s not always good to use heavily perfumed products and soaps on your skin, either. We women also have that very unfortunate trait, whereby sometimes our skin type changes without much warning. This means that the shower gel or mousse that worked last month now seems to react badly with our skin. There’s only so many neutral products on the market designed for skin as soft as ours, so trial and error must prevail!
Waxing. Shaving. Hair removal cream. Epilation. Laser treatment. Have you ever noticed that there is a huge market to remove perfectly natural body hair for aesthetic purposes? The amount of time and effort it takes to regularly rid the body of hair that is supposed to be there, but that society has deemed as unsightly is an awful lot! There are various ways you can avoid hair removal, but during LBD season it’s always nice to feel confident and smooth rather than resembling the werewolf you dressed up as at Halloween. If you’re feeling lazy about shaving your legs, aim for a wax, which lasts a lot longer. Check out this comprehensive hair removal guide so that you can choose the method that is perfect for you.
Our nails can often indicate to us when we need to sort our diet out, as they become flaky and brittle in response to a lack of specific vitamins and minerals in our diets. For some, a regular manicure that you don’t do yourself is a treat. With a pedicure, it’s a little bit of indulgence that you can have every once in awhile, but trying to find the time isn’t easy. There are a lot of pop up nail care booths in supermarkets and malls that you can take advantage of now, so slipping out on your lunch break to get your hands buffed and nails painted is a lot easier than trying to fit an appointment in around your job. Chipped and boring nails just won’t do in a season of sparkle and pretty outfits!
There’s more than legs, bikini and underarm hair to think about. When you go to social events, your face needs to be on point for photographs. That means you need to invest ten minutes of your time every six weeks to get your eyebrows tidied up. You may be a dab hand with a pair of tweezers, but trusting a beautician with either a wax or threading treatment could be the best money you ever spend. Not only does it last longer than tweezing does, you have a second pair of eyes to ensure you’re not going to end up with wonky brows. After a few treatments, it shouldn’t hurt any more than the last time, as your skin becomes toughened to the pulling sensation that you feel during a treatment.
One of the hardest parts of female maintenance is makeup. A lot of women don’t know what products work for their skin, and asking for help isn’t always the easiest thing to do despite the girls at the makeup counters at the mall being there for that very reason! Learning the products that you need, how to apply them, what colours are best for your skin tone and how to remove all the makeup is a taxing task. However, makeup is also going to give you that little bit of oomph first thing in the morning when you are making your way to work. It’s going to make your eyes sparkle on a night out with the girls and the fun of matching your eyeshadow to your outfit is huge!
Those stubborn grey hairs, split ends and dried locks are all quick ways to make your self-esteem plummet to the floor. The thing is, having to attend appointments with a hairdresser to keep up with putting new colourant on your hair isn’t always possible if you’re busy. Buying box dyes is a quick fix, but it isn’t going to work long term to keep the grey hair from coming back.
The more you use heat on your hair in the form of straighteners, curlers and hair dryers, the worse condition your hair is in, but then if you towel dry it you end up with frizz-city! Of course, there are gents out there with long hair. The trouble is they don’t always have to do more than wash and dry before putting it up in a man bun for the day. Hair upkeep can take a lot of time and expense.
Busy women of the world don’t always have the time for a comprehensive beauty regime. One thing that you do need to have though, is a good level of confidence. Setting aside one day a month to complete the upkeep jobs (such as hair appointments, waxing and nails), can go a long way to making you feel great about yourself.
Your whole attitude to life and maintenance, especially in LBD season, is going to mean the difference between whether you can be bothered to keep it up or not. Make yourself feel good!
Take the time to spend money on yourself and get your girly maintenance kept up. It may be a chore to start with, but once you’re in a good routine of looking great, you will start feeling great and want to do whatever you can to keep looking fantastic. Living up to the expectations in the magazines isn’t easy, so it’s time to cultivate your own look and your own routine with that look. It’s all about confidence this holiday season!