How to Be a Girl

06/26/2014 12:01 AM

06/25/2014 11:23 PM

I don’t know whether to blame this on my parents, my lack of a sibling, or myself, but somewhere along the way I failed to learn how to be a girl.

I wouldn’t say I’m a tomboy — I love wearing dresses, and I don’t particularly like to get dirty if I can help it. But I didn’t really start wearing makeup until a good five years out of college, and it was only a couple years ago that I got my first pedicure (still haven’t gotten a manicure). Just this week I reached another girl milestone: getting my eyebrows waxed.

Now look, they weren’t completely shaggy. I plucked as needed, heeding all the lady mags’ advice not to overdo it but also not really having a plan for what shape I was going for. On a whim, I asked my hair stylist if she could fix my brows at my already-scheduled appointment this week, and she responded eagerly. Maybe a little too eagerly. Like she’d been waiting to get at those things all those many years I’ve been a client. Hmmm.

I’m happy to report I lived through the experience. The warm wax felt good on my face, I managed not to screech or kick my stylist when it was peeled off, and I loved the way my brows looked afterward. Groomed brows are a small detail that make a big difference in your appearance, my stylist told me, and I could see she was right.

My daughter, who’s 4, is a long way off from needing to know about this stuff. And I don’t know that “need to know” is really a status I’d ever place on things like this. But I’m finding that’s it’s sort of fun (though expensive!) to pamper yourself a bit, even if you know in your practical little heart that it’s completely silly and unnecessary.

I think maybe the appeal, at least for me, is shaking off that practical side and giving in to the silly every now and then. None of it makes you a better person, but maybe letting go of the practical a bit gives your soul a little shape, a little color, a little edge. And that might just be worth the dough.



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