Am I the toiletry industry’s wet dream?

This morning, I counted up how many different products I apply to myself before I leave the bathroom.

Turtle-neckEarly on in my yet-to-be-published novel, SINGLED OUT, my main character, a woman in her 40’s readies herself for the day. It seems to amuse people that her make-up routine is, shall we say, comprehensive. This has been insightful, as her exact routine used to be my own in the days when appearance was everything and I faced customers and prospects on behalf of one global technology company after another, every working day. Safe to say, as a home-based freelancer, I’ve let myself go a little since those high-pressure days.

And yet… I remain in thrall to the toiletry and cosmetics industries. It seems I cannot rise in the morning without recourse to no less than 23 jollops, unguents, creams, lotions and potions. And that’s before I begin my now significantly curtailed make-up routine.

Impossible, I hear you cry! Well, here it is, this morning’s precise schedule of application:

  1. Toothpaste – a minty-fresh dental drenching
  2. Gum gel – yuk, temporary measure only, I hope
  3. Mouthwash – yes, I do love that minty-fresh feel
  4. Soap – duh
  5. Shampoo – twice, primer and undercoat
  6. Conditioner – topcoat
  7. Shower cream – soap is for the basin, bottled jollop in the shower
  8. Ph-neutral wash – muse no further upon this
  9. Shaving mousse – see, I still have some self-respect left
  10. Deodorant – what did the old advert say… may your armpits be charmpits?
  11. Hair mousse – it’s purple, does it really make my highlights gleam, I wonder?
  12. Anti-ageing serum – meant to sound medical, but off-the-shelf from Boots
  13. Face cream – I think this one actually does a job
  14. Eye cream – a micro-pot of magic with an earth-shattering price tag
  15. Talc – summer… summer
  16. Body lotion – scrummy one infused with tiny flecks of something gold, summer indulgence
  17. Athlete’s foot cream – purely pre-emptive, as I love to swim
  18. Heel balm – ditto above
  19. Lip salve – I keep a half-dozen of these dotted about the place
  20. Hair putty – gravity-defying sticky stuff
  21. Hairspray – I’m an 80’s girl, so shoot me
  22. Hand cream – I go back to this at least 5 times a day, but it pays off
  23. … last but not least, I can’t leave the house without a squirt… Eau de Parfum

As far as make-up goes, my significantly curtailed routine still involves eight products on an at-home day and ten on a going-to-a-meeting day.

You might call me a little OCD – and I would of course protest. But as a woman with a bathroom all to herself – I get all the cupboards, all the shelves, all the drawers, every flat surface, the whole dressing area, all of it – I can give free-rein to my corporal indulgencies. So I do.

Just don’t ask me if I line my jollops up facing forward with exactly, precisely the same space between each one.

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Author: Jools

Abundant, Bold, Confident, Determined, Empathetic, Forthright, Grumpy, Healthier, Individual, Just me, Kind, Loving, Mellifluous, Natural, Optimistic, imPatient, Quirky, Real-world, Single-minded, unTreatable, Unwound, Verbal, Wilful, eXtraordinary, Young and old, Zero-tolerance.

8 thoughts on “Am I the toiletry industry’s wet dream?”

  1. Love it – love you! I’m afraid I can only claim 3 items – soap, deodorant and moisturiser. Unless you include the washing up liquid when I tackled last night’s overlooked supper dishes. Feel the need now to at least dig out some hand cream.

    1. Now you know why I arrive with a giant kit-bag for an overnight stay! Handcream… yes, use it! I would tell any woman, your hands betray your age, be kind to them and they will reward you 🙂

  2. I got whiplash from your list. That’s a lot of products, but no judgment–to each their own. I’m very simple (a minimalist). Currently I’ve cut down my products to shampoo, body wash, cocoa butter lotion (because it can go everywhere and is almost all natural), face lotion, deodorant, lip balm, and root repair and heat protection for my hair. I only use hairspray if I curl my hair. No makeup. Makeup is a trap. You start with one thing and the next thing you know–BAM–you’ve got a tote of stuff because makeup requires layers.

    1. I know it’s a lot of product – even I was surprised! But it’s been my way for years. And being blonde with nearly invisible eyebrows, I cannot forego make-up – a little light foundation/blusher is a nice-to-have, but I can’t can’t can’t EVER leave the house without drawing in my eyebrows 🙂

  3. You’ve got me thinking now! On mornings when I shower (not every morning – too much hair, too little time) I use soap, toothpaste, shampoo, conditioner if I remember, deodorant and mascara if I have time. On non-shower mornings it’s just soap, deodorant, toothpaste and mascara. I ought to put handcream on daily, because I wash my hands so much in my job. I can’t imagine having the patience to use all those lotions and potions every day!

    1. Like many habits in life, once they’re ingrained, it’s just what you do. It probably is a little bit OCD, but I’d find it difficult to reduce my morning routine too far without feeling I was letting myself go a bit… If is any consolation, I don’t always bother with the heel cream 😉

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