I have a fear of makeup stores. Yes, I’ve worked in makeup before. Yes, I wear a pound-and-a-half of makeup for shows eight (or more) times a week. Yes, it’s just a store and I shouldn’t fear human interaction. But I can’t help it; I’m terrified of makeup stores.
There’s something about walking into the bright lights that show every flaw in your pores, and then the heads of the pretty people in black swivel toward you like they can scent easy prey. They descend like hyenas, telling you how they can fix the bags under your eyes, or the wrinkles you’ve never even noticed on your forehead, and you just want to scream, “All I need is eyeliner!”
I needed white shimmer eyeshadow for a show a few months ago, and I put off finding any for weeks. The concept of facing the black-clad pretty people was too much for me. Lucky for me I have a friend who is an awesome professional makeup artist. Really, she’s amazing, and you need to see her work. So I asked her to tell me what to ask the pretty people for. She laughed and said she could do me one better; all I had to do was go into the tiny Bare Minerals specialty store and ask for snowflake. So I did.
I walked right into that tiny store, and when a lady who looked like an elf asked me what I wanted, I said, “Snowflake!” a little too loudly to be considered socially acceptable. She asked if I wanted anything else and I said, “Just snowflake!”
And she put it in a bag, and I gave her money and got to leave. It was like a freakin’ miracle!
But then I broke my blush and my dark eyeshadow last week! Luckily, the same friend is in my current show with me. So I asked her to write down what I needed, and not only did she tell me what to get, she helped me find it online! No store for me! Mahahaha!
The makeup came, and it was perfect! But one of my free samples was missing. I asked the company where it was, and they sent me an in-store gift card to make up for it.
I knew I had to go to the store. And the night before, I had a nightmare. I walked out of makeup hell having spent a hundred and fifty dollars and realized that I hadn’t even bought the eyeshadow I wanted.
I woke up in a panic but knew I had to go to the store anyway.
I walked in with my husband as a bodyguard and avoided eye contact as I made a lap to find what I needed. And then I saw it right behind a sales lady. There was no way to get around her. I thought about leaving, but I didn’t want to let my free ten dollars go to waste.
And then the pretty lady spotted me. “Can I help you?”
“I want a color between Sex Kitten and Queen Phyllis!” It makes sense in context, I swear.
She started talking and fishing through things then put a streak of eye shadow on my hand to show me the color. And you’ll be so proud of me: I actually asked an almost normal question. “Can I see it next to the Sex Kitten?”
And she put it that color on my hand, too.
And I said, “Okay, I want that one.”
She handed me the little tub of shimmer powder. “Can I get you anything else?”
“No!” That one I really did kind of shout.
“Okay, that was easy.” She gave me her pretty lady smile as I ran for the register.
And then I checked out. And I got to leave and have a beer for surviving.
And now I know to just ask a makeup artist friend and order online. And if I end up with an in-store gift card, I’m gifting that poop.