For many years I went along with them. My grandmother bleached my "mousy" brown hair when I was an anorexic eleven year old. She thought I was sad that my once naturally blonde hair was darkening as I got older and that I had become anorexic to "get attention." What better way to give a girl attention than to color her hair, she thought.
This is what I look like now.
Brown hair with natural blonde, red, and yes!--even grey--streaks. No hair coloring. No makeup. I didn't even brush my hair. I washed it with the most unsexy shampoo of all: Selsun Blue. I did not condition it. When I ran out of conditioner recently and I was too busy writing to go to the store to buy some, I discovered that I like the natural wave my hair takes when it's not weighted down by unnatural oils. I washed my face and my body with Whole Foods' store-brand soap, Verve, because it doesn't make my rosacea flair and my husband gets a 20% discount for working at Whole Foods. I put nothing on my face other than soap and water. Lotions and makeup sting. And even if they didn't, I've gotten to the point in life where I just can't be bothered. I'm too busy to worry about my looks.
Will thanks me. He says, "I never liked the taste of lipstick anyway."