Thursday, 9 April 2009
I was at a launch today having a manicure (one of the lovely perks of my job) and I was having a chat to a fabulous PR and friend about how some guys just don’t get beauty and what it does for women. At this point, I had multiple flash backs to dinner parties and family gatherings where I constantly get baffled looks from both men and women about what the hell I do for a living.
It usually goes something like this with an older conservative gentleman.
Old Gentleman- “So you read history at Bristol University, I hear”.
Ateh- “Yes it’s a passion of mine”.
Old Gentleman- “And now you’re a beautician”?
Ateh- “ No, I am a journalist who happens to write about the wonderful world of beauty”.
Old Gentleman- “ I have an ingrown toenail can I show you in the bathroom”.
Ateh- “ No, I don’t do that but I can suggest someone you can see”.
Old Gentleman- “Thought you said you were in beauty, it’s all rubbish anyway, you just brain wash and take advantage of insecure women”.
Ateh- “ Firstly, would you ask a banker or hedge funder to pay your gas bill. Secondly, my job is to educate women and empower them to express themselves using beauty products and treatments.”
As you can imagine I am very popular dinner guest. The fact is for me the beauty industry is about the inside and not the outside. I love beauty because it speaks to the soul and spirit. I also think beauty is very liberating for women, did you know hedonistic party girl flappers in the 1920s (think the likes of Pixie Geldof and Lilly Allen of their day) showed their defiance and emancipation by wearing red lipstick? Before the First World War only prostitutes wore red lipsticks and it was a sign women didn’t want to be pushed back into the home and subservient roles after working while their men were away on the frontline.
Beauty for me is about connecting to your spirit and there is nothing more soul restoring than having a long soak in the bath. I love Origins Peace of Mind Vapour Bath, the minty bath makes you breath deeply, which is better than a Valium for taking the edge off a hard day.
I also love to mask when in the tub and apply the SK II Facial Treatment Mask, which leaves skin plumped and soft. The best part of wearing it is that every time I put on the freaky looking cloth mask with cut out holes for your eyes and your mouth I scare my husband. I do a Hannibal Lector voice while jumping out at him naked. To be honest I don’t know what’s scarier.
Anyway I digress, I also love doing my own nails, it brings out the OCD in me as I love the ritualised ceremony of filing, cutting my cuticles and making them look polished and ladylike. I love slicking my nails with Essie’s Sugar Daddy, a pretty cool toned sheer pink, which makes me feel all Grace Kelly chic. That’s the magic about my beauty world, a pink nail polish can bring out my inner movie star just like films can help you travel the world without leaving the room or a ride in a convertible car can make you feel glad to be alive.
Posted by Ateh Jewel at 22:25