I grew up very differently than I now am.

I learned from an early age
How to do all the proper things –

Apply makeup
Style my hair
Walk correctly
Speak properly

Which silverware went where…

As a child I wore dresses,
Had my nails done (sometimes weekly),
Washed my hair with Evian,
Shopped only at high end stores
Wore jewelry all the time.

I would have easily been considered,
“High maintenance.”

I am no more.


On any given day,
If you run into me,

Which would likely be
Either at exercise class or the grocery store,

You’d find my hair pulled back,
No makeup on my face,
Fingernails unpainted
No jewelry anywhere

In what might look like,
But isn’t,
The same clothes I wore the day before.

So, what happened to me?
Why such a drastic change?

Because in terms of habits of self care,
(Or vanity, if you prefer)
It would seem
I’ve gone backwards.

That I was better off than I am.

This transition ties firmly into my story.
One that I won’t recount fully today.

But let’s just say…
Circumstances of health
Showed me the errors of my way.

When I was younger,
I gave much attention to my appearance
But little to the effects of those products
On my body.

Now, I do.

I also became tired.
Pain & illness will do that to you.

And, in that fatigue,
What seemed important then
No longer mattered to me.

If you just looked at me,
It won’t be obvious
That everything is done
(Or not done, in some cases)
For & with a purpose.

I will have my hair styled
I will have my makeup done
I will wear jewelry

When an occasion calls for it.

But, that isn’t daily –
Or even weekly.

Daily I wan’t to be free of stuff in my hair.
Free of stuff on my face.
I want to be comfortable & relaxed.

This ties into my rule
Of “First do no harm.”

Seemingly innocent habits
(Yes. Even those that are societally acceptable or expected)
Can harm us in ways we don’t realize.

Makeup doesn’t allow the face to breathe.

Nor does fingernail polish allow the nails to breathe.
It also seeps into our system.
And, doesn’t allow us to see
When the nails change –
A signal of changes in overall health.

Our bodies are porous.
Chemicals seep into it.

And, while used every now & then
This will unlikely cause any health issues

The bigger question…
One never asked because…

Well, frankly, most people don’t really want the answer.

What’s the long term effect on our health?

I don’t advocate my approach.
It’s not for everyone.

It’s not for most.

What I would suggest
Is giving some thought
To the possible effects of
Self care related products.

Fasting & juice detoxes have become
All the rage.

We recognize the our organs might
Need a break due to low quality food intake.

We’re not as likely to
Give thought to what we put on our body.

And, since we don’t give it thought,
We’re less likely to take a break.

When it comes to the physical body,
The quality of everything matters.

What’s in a product
Gets into us.

There are times
When I wish I didn’t care.

When I wish I was unaware.

If only I could
(In many regards)
Turn back time.

And, be the way most
(Women, at least) are.

But I can’t.

And, in many ways
It makes me feel like
An outcast to the world.

Still I hold strong

Doing what I know is best
For my body,

Not my ego.

Sadly, this becomes both
Harder & easier as I age.

Yellow small duckling walking on the asphalt road. adventure concept

Obvious self care enthusiast. Long time yoga practitioner. Introvert. Avid reader. Obsessive learner. Perpetual student.

Also blogging at accountableformyself.com

Read more about my personal journey.

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