I Feel Pretty, Oh So Pretty

I’m not high-maintenance when it comes to my “beauty” routine. However, there are some things that I will never give up.

Feels like Rapunzel

My one “vice” is my hair. It’s really fine and rather thin, and despite all protestations, is turning gray, so every few months, I visit the salon for “hair therapy.”

My recent "hair therapy."

My recent “hair therapy.”

I love my stylist. She actually owns the salon as well. I first started seeing her after a disastrous hair cut at another salon. I couldn’t do anything with it. I cried.

Yes, I cried over a haircut.

Yes, it would grow back, but mine grows so slowly. And, because it’s fine and thin, there’s not too much that I could do with it, given how short my previous stylist had cut some of the layers. So when I sat in her chair, I tearfully told her that I needed her to fix the debacle into something I could work with, and that I wanted to grow my hair out.

Since then, I’ve grown my hair the longest it’s ever been. It’s also the healthiest and best it’s ever looked. I love my hair now, and I can do so much with it. It actually keeps me cooler in the summer because it’s not sticking to my neck, and it’s so versatile that I almost never have a bad hair day. I’ve also started using a curling wand that gives me curls that stay – it’s really a miracle product. Until I used the curling wand, nothing made curls that lasted – curling irons of every size, curling brushes, hot rollers and even sleeping on rollers. Now, I can make curls in just minutes, that stay in for days.

Love my curling wand!

Love my curling wand!

As my health has deteriorated, I look “sick” all the time now. My face reflects the stress of recurrent infections and chronic pain, and the toll of decades of medications – the best I can do is have a simple and gentle skin care regimen.

I always leave the salon feeling beautiful.

Quick, Easy, Cheap Thrills

Another way of pampering myself is to paint my nails. I’ve had a love affair with nail polish since I was in high school. My Catholic school required us to wear uniforms, and had rules about hair, makeup and jewelry. The one thing that I could experiment with was nail polish – and the brighter, the better.

I played around with nail decals for this look.

I played around with nail decals for this look.

Due to my CF, I have what’s called “clubbing” on my nails. Decreased oxygen causes malformation of the fingertips, and in my case, resulted in large nailbeds. So when I painted my nails, and grew them long, people often thought that they were fake. I remember one boy trying to “pull them off” because he didn’t believe me.

There's no such thing as "too much sparkle."

There’s no such thing as “too much sparkle.”

My nail polish obsession hasn’t died, and I’m pretty sure it’s rubbed off on my nieces. I’m happy that my sisters indulged our bonding over nail polish when the girls were both little. I’m pretty sure we were painting toenails around 2 years old with colors I called “Barbie Pink” or “Cinderella Blue.”
As an auntie, I have the responsibility to make sure that they are as fabulous as possible, and nail polish is a quick, easy, cheap way to accomplish that!

How do you Pamper Yourself?

I’d love to hear about what you do to make yourself feel pretty! I know that beauty may only be “skin deep,” but it never hurts to feel good on the outside. It just makes it all the easier for you inside beauty to come out!!


2 thoughts on “I Feel Pretty, Oh So Pretty

  1. cR says:

    Hi Toni! Your curls are so pretty! That’s a ‘magic wand’ you’re using for sure. Ok – here’s my tip, or two, or three. Like you, I keep my skin care regime very simple, in a word, Cetaphil! I have rosacea and Cetaphil is what my doctor ordered. That plus the Rx cream (MetroLotion) I put on every morning & night has kept my skin comfortable & clear. Next tip – tube mascara. I hate the mess and irritation of removing eye makeup at night. Tube mascara is a polymer substance of some sort that creates little plastic-y tubes that coat your eyelashes, thickening & lengthening them. Once on, absolutely no smearing resulting in raccoon eyes. And at the end of the day, no stinging, oily eye make-up remover necessary. The tubes just slip off with a warm wet facecloth. My brand – L’Oreal Double Extend Beauty Tubes. Last but not least – perfume. I love it and have worn it almost every day since high school. My scent for the last 10+ or so years is Fracas by Robert Piguet. French tuberose and white blossoms. ps I don’t think I have EVER painted my nails. How weird is that? I really like how playful and creative people are nowadays with polish + embellishments – your decal look with daisies & butterflies is adorable.

    • Thank you!! I do love my curling wand!

      I also appreciate your tips for skin and beauty care.

      I have a pretty simple skin care routine. I’ve used Noxema as a cleanser since I was 13. I was into theater back then and often had to wear lots of heavy stage makeup, and Noxema was a simple, refreshing way to clean and soften my skin (in the summer, I put it in the refrigerator and after a day outsize, I slather it on almost as a mask to refresh my skin). I also use Olay moisturizer with sunscreen and Clinique eye cream (which lasts forever!). I use Almay mascara and use oil-free eye makeup remover pads, which makes it really easy. As for perfume, I’m allergic to most scents (and the propellants they use), so I prefer using Bath & Body shower gel and moisturizer – I have 4 or 5 scents that I rotate. I find that layering the scent that way is less obtrusive, and the products keep my skin so soft!

      Doing my nails is actually quite therapeutic for me. It makes me have to focus and stay calm. I love experimenting with colors. I also think that it helps me feel a bit “put together” even if I am just wearing sweats or have my hair in a ponytail. I find that when I have painted my nails, people always notice. It’s also an inexpensive way to do some “retail therapy”.

      Thank you for all of your tips. I have read about the tube mascara, I have wanted to try it before. I have sensitive eyes, so I’d have to experiment. I’ll post about my experience if I do try them.

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