The Beauty Rituals Women Have to Put Up With

Some mornings my partner will sleep through his alarm and be showered, shaved and dressed in a matter of minutes. As I watch him I am reminded of the complexity of being a woman and the effort it takes to walk out the door each morning. All men have to worry about is the occasional $25 haircut, and a really small area to groom on their face. Oh, and maybe even a few chops with the toenail clippers and a swish of some mouth wash if you get lucky.

So, as a woman have you ever thought about how time consuming it is to keep even our basic beauty standards in check? I’m not even talking about contouring, highlightening and all that other jazz that turned what used to be a splash of foundation into a work of art and added three hours to a night out. I’m talking about those niggling little beauty tasks we have to put up with.

There’s nail polish. Yeah, it looks hot and it feels good to look down at your fingers on the keyboard with a bright burst of colour. That is until, 20 minutes after application you look like you’ve been doing some hardcore sanding in the shed and managed to sand off random areas of your polish. Yes, you could get acrylics, I tried that – but besides making it literally impossible to open your purse, after two weeks they are lifting and you are left with a serious decision. Do I continue with this torture or do I proceed to rip them off, one by one until my nails are thin and raw. I went with option two. Ouch. Painting your toe nails on the other hand (pun intended) is like painting with some strange Superglue paint…it never comes off. And yet, over and over again we try it all, without fail – because today might just be the day our nail polish does what we want it to.

Then, there’s hair removal. As I said, boys have this tiny little area on their face to contend with, and most of the time it’s more of a quick beard trim than a full shave. We have eyebrows, lips, legs, bikini – even our behinds if we are really dedicated. Most of us use different methods for different areas, a little wax here, threading there and a whole lot of shaving. Armpits are the worst; the very next day you are back to square one.  What makes matters worse are those pesky ingrowns, especially when they are right there in your bikini line. Ingrowns and regrowth. The two biggest hair removal problems of the century. Or, when you forget to shave your legs and you suddenly realise when you’re on the train to work and it’s too late. All day you worry someone will notice the tiny bits of fluff running up your pins. Eyebrows change everything, but the hair never grows at the same rate and you always end up with misplaced yet pluckable caterpillar-esque furs. Eyebrow pencil though…best.

We spray tan ourselves because you know, the only safe tan is a fake tan. Every event calls for one, and the prep that goes into it is quite remarkable. Shave. Exfoliate. Moisturise. All that and more. But the thing about going to get a spray tan is what to wear? Once you rip off the disposable undies you are left standing there like a chocolate coated sticky caramel lolly. And you have to stay like that, sometimes for hours. Driving home with no bra trying not to smudge yourself. It’s worth it. It looks like you’ve lost 10 kilos and have just come back from a remote beach holiday…. until….a few days later and the fade starts. It starts with your face and then your arms and legs start to blotch. Do you have some weird skin rash? Nope, your tan is rubbing off. You either moisturise fiercely and try to hold onto what once was or you rub and scrub furiously until you are back to your lighter self. After a few days with a tan your partner thinks that’s your actual skin, and when you are back to pale he questions your health.

Regrowth. Sure, bayalage became a thing making it socially acceptable to have different coloured roots. However, there is a difference between that and your regular old regrowth. Somehow my hair always grows fast, so fast that I leave the hairdresser with perfect roots and in what feels like a week later I need to go back. Oh, it grows fast where regrowth is concerned, but does it ever get longer? No. Recently my partner complained about his 20 minute haircut. Why did it take so long?! I just smiled and nodded in faux sympathy. What is 20 minutes for a boy is 2 and a half hours for a girl. Nothing beats freshly done hair though.

Being a woman is hard work, we are constantly pruning and preening ourselves, and this is nothing compared to those times when you have a big event to prepare for. Even low maintence chicks require maintenance. Guess, what – I wouldn’t change it for anything.

I hope this article made you smile; what beauty chores do you find time consuming or annoying? Please let me know in the comments section below.

19 thoughts on “The Beauty Rituals Women Have to Put Up With

  1. The beauty face mask that makes you look like a UFO freak and scares the baby when they see you. Oh and don’t forget those awful nose pieces to remove blackheads. I have never known something that hurts so much when you remove it. And haven’t they realised yet that our left and right side of our brains don’t compute equally. How are we supposed to apply nail polish on our right hand, holding a shaking left hand with a mighty blob of nail polish. I make a god damn mess every time.

    Men are lucky to even apply face cream, let alone endure all the things us women do to beautify ourselves. But I must admit I don’t think I could ever succumb to being a hairy under armed homosapien.

    1. Oh yes! How could I forget the face masks and the blackhead strips. It should really be a trend just to paint one hand of nails, it is quite impossible to use my left hand for anything. Thanks for sharing your thoughts, you made me giggle x

  2. Fantastic article and thank you for the laugh.
    And I thought I was the only one that had nail polish woes.
    I have 2 moles under my armpit and it’s a wonder I haven’t shaved them off yet but I have to look in a mirror to shave them which is a pain.
    I also have one foreign hair that grows in the same place all the time, is not the colour of my hair and I have to pluck it. Perhaps I am getting old? Haha
    I have really light, fine hair on my legs so am lucky that I can get away without shaving so often but I do remember once looking at the top of my big toe in the sunlight and thinking oh my! I better get rid of that hair.
    My partner actually takes longer than me as he shaves his whole head and is so fussy about how his goatee looks.I can put makeup on and blow-dry my hair before he’s finished but I think I have learnt to be quick over the years being a busy mum.

    1. Haha you made me laugh with your comments, I especially love the part about your partner! I hope you tease him about it. I’m SO glad you enjoyed the article – not sure that I am clever enough to write a book but you made my day with that one xx

      1. You are clever enough as most of the members would agree I am sure. After all that’s why we are all here reading your great articles 🙂

  3. Oh and Anna……. You should really write a book one day as you have a real flair for putting words together to capture us all.

  4. Oh yes, am so hearing you!!! Especially the regrowth!!! My hair grows so quickly, I have regrowth skunk stripe within days. I started coloring my hair when I found the first grey hair when I was 14. Yep, 14 grrrr and now at 55, I am seriously considering silver streaks to color-coordinate. The rest of it….fingernails-have to keep short for work as a cleaner, toenails-I wear sneakers so only worry about polish when I am on Holidays. Hairdresser? Nope. Make-up–very rarely. Tan? I work indoors as Shift Worker.
    Thank you so much for the giggle, this made my day 🙂

    1. Regrowth is probably number one on the list of annoyances! Silver hair is in fashion isn’t it lol? I have white hairs coming through so I find it easier to go blonde than dark these days.

  5. Ah needed a laugh this week and you have hit the nail on the head Anna. I hate when hubby decides 10 minutes beforehand and says….we should head to the shops now. Now?????? I can cut down to get ready in an hour but not 10 mins.

    I am lucky in that my hairs on my legs are so fine and blonde you need a magnifying glass to find them but it’s not good when we have gone through winter wearing jeans and then jumps into summer and you head out and think uh ohhhh, I forgot about my legs and shaving. Looking down I do notice a forest happening on my legs. At least my arms are shaved hee hee.

    My hair on my head grows so quick. One day at the hairdresser, maybe a tad shorter than what I wanted….a week later right length and then a week later…… doesn’t do what I want and has grown heaps.

    Ah the joys of being a female.
    I am always painting my toe nails more than my hands these days and then a month later, look down and think, gee I should be taking that off STAT!.

    1. I am so glad I made you laugh Mandy, I love your comments too! Men will never understand will they haha. I hope your week has gotten a little better x

  6. Ha ha, this was a great article, and I can so relate!
    The only nail polish I use (and I only apply it for functions etc), is a 60 second variety as I am always in a rush and simply don’t have time for the full base coat, top coat etc.
    Hair removal is a drainer too; I put shorts on the other morning but then realised I was in need of a shave but didn’t have time so I quickly changed to loner leggings (even though it was going to be a hot day!)

    1. 60 second polish is a good invention, but I still always manage to chip it! That sounds like something I would do – I’d rather be hot than show off my hairy legs haha. Thanks for the laugh xx

  7. So true! Funny Anna
    I hate nails ! Forever with my hands in the sink and yet I need perfect nails or I feel ick….I need a maid lol

  8. Ha ha ha! Thank you for this amazing and funny article, Anna! You’ve made my day!

    I have 2 teenage daughters who are discovering the joys of being a woman with regards to beauty rituals and in particular – hair removal. Eeesh! And then there’s the eldest with her expensive make-up products and bayalage hair treatment!

    Although I should be grateful… she cleaned my makeup brush for me the other day!

    Yes, us females are hard work, but it’s good when we can laugh about it!

    1. Hi Christine, I am so glad you enjoyed the article! My daughter is 5, I’m not sure how I will cope when she is a teenager 🙂 It’s fun being a woman though, isn’t it?!

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