Saturday, September 24, 2011

The Evolution of Lipstick

For Becky Steritz ---

Meh, I'm tired to talking about fat. My tummy is full of HALF a bean burrito and a glass of wine. Becky told me I should write about my relationship with lipstick so that's what I'm going to do.

And, yes. I have a RELATIONSHIP with lipstick. Beggars can't be choosers.

No, really. I know lipstick is not "in style" anymore but I've worn it since I was a teenager and I CAN'T STOP! My mother was a lipstick wearer. Bright red. She wore it all the time like me.

In fact, funny but true story..... My mom died in 1991 when I was 37 years old. I was at the funeral home for the "visitation" the night before her memorial service. I was surrounded by elderly Southern Baptist "widow" women. I looked at my mom in her casket, noticed her bright PINK lips, and unknowingly said, "We have to change her lipstick. My mother wouldn't be caught dead in pink lipstick."

You know how you sometimes say things unknowingly? Like something comes out of your mouth and you go, "What the hell?" Do other people do that or is that just a Jennything? Those elderly Southern Baptist women looked at me with dropped jaws. But... I knew what I meant.

Until I was a teenager, my mom smeared Vaseline or Mentholatum on my lips every night. Really.

During my Junior and Senior years of high school, I worked in the afternoons at a pediatric dentist's office. One of my jobs was to "paint" children's teeth with a red dye "plaque disclosing" solution so they could see where they weren't brushing sufficiently.

I discovered that the plaque disclosing solution was a wonderful lipstick, making my lips a dark, luscious, Sangria red that was popular then. And it would stay on forever! I nearly had to brush my lips with toothpaste to get it off!

After graduating from high school and losing my source of plaque disclosing solution, I discovered green lipstick. It was called Mood Matcher and, though green, once it touched your lips it turned some shade of red - dependent on your mood. Basically, if you made your lips into the shape of an 'o', you had a living mood ring.

This lipstick was problematic if you were moody...or hormonal..or pre-menstrual..or mad. Some days, I'd get all dolled up, looking my professional best for a court appearance in my job as a Children's Protective Services caseworker. I'd look classy from the toes up to my bright neon glow-in-the-dark PINK lipstick. It was somewhat like playing with Mr. and Mrs. Potato Head and putting her big 'ole feminine lips on his masculine face. Remember?

For about ten years, I've been stuck on one brand and color of lipstick. Loreal Spiced Cider ($7.99) if you ever want to buy me a tube. I put it on countless times a day. I can't stand it if I can't feel it. Friends tease me, men won't kiss me, I mess up everyone's cups and glasses - but it's me. It's a Jenn-thing. And I don't think I would be 'me' without it.

And it just dawned on me that it's ANOTHER ADDICTION!!!!!



  1. O baby, don't you hate when that happens? (Finding another addiction.) Just wanted you to know that I'm reading your blog, I'm trying to lose weight, and I wear lipstick all the time, too. My mom always wore it - "Love That Red" was her color! The one I like now is Revlon Color Stay Ultimate (which comes in about a thousand colors - but I only use one) because, like your plaque tinter, it really does stay on a long, long time!

  2. Tell me what it's called! I want a lipstick that stays on longer!

  3. Look on the bright side, it's got no fat or calories and it gives you something else to oral fixate on. Not to mention it is, oh so Jen beautiful ;)

  4. Ummm...I wipe out the supply of Revlon's "Make Me Blush" whenever they restock it. I love my lipstick. Never thought of it as an addiction. Just brightens up my face!

    Lisa B.