Saturday, December 31, 2011


   My wife is beautiful with make-up. My wife is beautiful without make-up.
   She is beautiful in subtly different ways, from a physical standpoint. With make-up on she is beautiful in a very classical way, so much so that she draws looks from men, wherever we go. I quite enjoy trailing slightly behind her, watching men watching her.
Mona Lisa
The Madonna
   With make-up off, she takes on a whole different look, her beauty morphs into something a little more ethereal, Lady Madonna or Mona Lisa-esque, innocent and almost child-like.
   It matters little to me what kind of outward beauty she presents, I didn't marry her based on her physical appearance. In my line of work I am constantly surrounded by attractive women and have been for many years now. Nothing about their beauty has ever tempted me.
   Doralyn's beauty goes so much deeper than any of that and has so much more to do with how she interacts with the world around her and the people inside it. For many years I watched people fall in love with her and, at some point, I finally succumbed as well.
   The Doralyn I fell in love with wore make-up. For about 15 years whenever I saw her she was wearing it. I maybe saw her once without it. In light of the fact that it took 15 years for me to fall in love with her I doubt that any of that was the result of her make-up. Much more than likely it was all the times when we realized we were thinking the same thing at the same time, all the times I would crack a joke and she was the only one who laughed because she was the only one who got it, and probably all the times she kissed Syd on the cheek (but that's a whole other blog...).
   Sorry, this was supposed to be about make-up...
   How many times have you seen pictures of celebrities without their make-up and realized just how plain they actually are? On the flip side, how many of those makeover shows have you watched where they take a very non-descript, girl-next-door kind of woman and, with an expert application of make-up, turn her into someone who is stunningly attractive?
   It all kind of makes you stop and re-assess the definition of beauty.
My Sweetie, after a hard day of wearing make-up
   Doralyn and I have this ongoing disagreement about the nature of her physical beauty. She will go almost nowhere without her make-up. I have many times told her she really didn't need to go to all the bother, that she was quite beautiful without it. This rarely deters her from putting it on. And in actuality, I was unable to find any pictures of her without it. So you'll likely have to take my word for it that, in fact, she is lovely in the skin she was born in. That is just one of the many reasons I am lucky to be her husband!
   And apparently she is not the only woman (or man) who is reluctant to go without make-up. World-wide it is an almost 200 billion dollars a year industry! This, of course, if you include such things as toiletries and perfume and such. Still, it's all rather mind-boggling the extent to which we go simply to look good. Lord knows what the figures would be like if we included fashion in them!
   When you think about it, make-up is kind of a funny concept. It is superficial almost by definition. There is no disguising the fact that you are wearing it (although I understand that make-up, when applied well, should seem very natural) and what you end up presenting to the world is a person who is trying to hide something.
   Well, okay, I guess clothes also fall into that category then, don't they? I myself am quite reluctant to go anywhere without clothes and do spend some time making aesthetic choices when picking out what I'm going to wear for the day. Apart from maybe shaving, I leave my face alone, though. I'm imagining that most guys do, apart from maybe a little moisturizer or something. Nothing that will dramatically alter his appearance, no eye shadow, blush or mascara, nothing that might make it trickier for his buddies to pick him out of a crowd.
   So it's essentially only women who have to live with the make-up issue. Anthropologists would likely suggest that this is an offshoot of millions of years of evolution, wherein the female of the species needed to make herself as attractive as possible to as many males as possible simply in order to ensure the survival of that particular species.
   I doubt, however, that most women are taking this into consideration as they perform their daily make-up ritual. They might, though, be in some kind of subconscious competition with the other women in the office or perhaps the girls at the bar or party. In this way, then, perhaps evolution carries on, inexorably.
   So ladies (and perhaps gentlemen) wear your make-up with pride. Or don't wear your make-up, we love you just the way you are!
   Whatever you do, remember to shine out from within!

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