Monthly Archives: February 2015

Fashionable or Frightening FAIL?

In spring of 2014, I began a very public journey to learn how to find and apply makeup correctly. You see, up until recently, I wore very little to no make up beyond a gloss and mascara. So I was determined to not only learn the fundamentals, I needed some
everyday wear

I chose three different makeup artists and got down to the business of figuring out my face.
What I found was beyond interesting. The process was anywhere between 25 minutes to hours and I could not believe all the attention to detail!
I also learned that makeup can be expensive depending on the brand and that all brands are not created equal. It is no wonder the make up industry is a billion dollar business!!

My first stop was Sephora, with a friend Jennifer and she had my face assessed. It was noted that my skin was almost flawless but I was given foundation, primer and concealer. Then it was on to the palette of eyeshadow, blush and lipstick. They ended with a bronzer for the skin and a finisher.
I have to tell you, my face didn’t feel like my own but I liked the transformation somewhat.
My next stop was with a professional artist and here are my results from her-

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It was incredibly flawless but felt too heavy on my skin and I had an allergic reaction to the eyelash glue!! It Took over a week for the redness in my eyes to subside, so that was my first and last time wearing those things.

My next stop was another friend from Mary Kay but this time, I sent a picture of what kind of look I desired. I believe she came pretty close and the foundation was lighter and a better fit for my skin tone-

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From those three informative sessions, I learned how to apply and wear makeup just the way I desired. What I found over time, was that it was too time consuming for me and I went back to mascara and gloss with one addition- a concealer for under my eyes. I’m much happier for it.

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What generated this blog however, was a picture I recently saw on the Internet. You take a look and judge for yourself- but after I stared hard at it, I realized many people have taken makeup artistry to a new level and what may be too much for me, seems to not be enough for others

I have found myself wondering too, if men truly like all of what we go through to be beautiful or is this just about us? Makeup ages you depending on how often and how much it is used but seeing the imagery below from what seems to be an African wedding personally frightened me. Is this a part of a culture or have we gone frighteningly too far?
You decide.
Enough said-

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The car or the pole?

For a few days, I was traveling with my friend LuAnn Cahn as she does 30 dares in 30 cities to promote her book, “ I Dare me

One of those dares, was to be the Pit crew for a racing car from NASCAR in Morrisville North Carolina at the PIT school.

I was so excited I could hardly breathe as I am a fan of speed and nascar fascinates me to no end. My feet never touched the ground the entire time I was there because the thrill of this kept me floating.
Luann was being taped for a segment to be aired on WBTV in Charlotte, so I had all the time in the world to poke around and ask all kinds of questions of the pit crew until their poor heads spun! I wanted to know how long did it take for them to complete the school, how many of them landed in a NASCAR pit after this and most importantly, how many women had ever completed the program. The answer to the last question was two but neither made it to NASCAR. I got an immediate glint in my eye.

When I picked up a 70 pound tire with ease, those men looked at me differently and so when I was given the 3,400 pound race car to jack, we were all surprised when I did it with three pumps! They dropped that car several times and I jacked it right back up each time much to their awe and delight!

I was asked to consider taking the 8 week course because they had never met a woman of my strength level which is what they need for a pit crew in nascar.

My goal now is to do just that and I’m willing to see if I could be the first woman in a nascar pit crew. What do I have to lose? It is important that as women, we don’t limit ourselves especially if it’s something we have interest in. I always loved tinkering around in cars and my father taught me how to change a tire, oil and brakes but discouraged me from wanting to fix cars because it wasn’t a ” girlie” thing to do. I kept hanging around one Jamaican mechanic soaking up all that I could but he caught on and shooed me away too.

So one would think after doing something like this which was indeed pretty impressive, I could do anything right?

Wrong.

Later on that evening, we made reservations for something neither one of us had ever tried. Pole dancing exercise classes.

We walked into the studio and I took one look at the instructor who was perfect and said ” I don’t even think so!”
She slid over to a pole and launched her self up like a feline and did some of the most intricate moves I had ever seen and it left nothing to the imagination.

At this point, I’m beet red and told LuAnn there was no way, I was trying this thing.

In a deep part of me that I always thought was so open and free to explore all sides of life, I froze.

Not only did the thought of that pole was daunting me, I felt exposed and different and very uncomfortable.

I finally met my match. It was silver and shiny and cold and I wanted no parts of it.
I struggled with my heritage ( women of good stature in society would never do such a thing,) this is not something “good girls” do, it felt debasing, I was mortified on several levels and I worried about what my sons, love and my father would think! All of that ran through my head as I stood there fully limiting myself on purpose based on learned beliefs and in that moment, could not work my way past any of it.

I stayed long enough to do a few warm up exercises which were great and watched as LuAnn tried a few basic moves with Amanda the instructor.

What we recorded is something we are not quite sure we could upload anywhere publicly but it was funny that I spent an hour in an F-16 breaking all kinds of sound barriers, am ready to tackle race cars and got stumped by a pole. Literally.

I have to honestly say that I wondered how many people are quietly leaving their corporate jobs and hitting those poles because these places can be found in every major city in the country.
LuAnn had this observation as we discussed it-
” poles are associated with strip clubs and I while it takes an incredible amount of athleticism, we are in influential positions where we tell young women
To value their bodies and themselves. This seemed debasing. The stigma of the pole is still alive and well.”

We are on a journey to try new things. We went out of curiosity, got an eyeful and realized we just couldn’t go there. There is a part of me that felt hypocritical for encouraging others to face their fears and try new things only to find I did indeed have my own limits based on what I was raised to believe. I recognize I’m not the only one that feels this way but I also acknowledge there lies a deeper issue here of what is considered normal and acceptable in today’s society and those things we choose to follow blindly for whatever the reasons.

We do think women are fully reclaiming themselves in these studios and this requires a strength level and athleticism, I had not ever seen before.

To them, I say bravo.

I’m going back to “normal”
Things like flying in a fighter jet and seek introspection about the simpler things I just refused to try.

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