I’m no stranger to beauty tips, and I certainly have nothing against articles containing such advice. However, there is something a little bit problematic with the first article on Yahoo News right now: Beauty Mistakes that Men Hate.
I clicked on the article despite its title, hoping to find some good information, and was instantly disappointed. Nothing was new, or even interesting! Do we really be told to avoid overdone perfume, caked on foundation, orange self-tanner, or yellow teeth? Thank you, Yahoo, I know that when it comes to perfume, less is more, and I also know that dental hygiene is important. But that information isn’t out there just so to make men happy, it’s just common courtesy. And I’m not light-handed with foundation just so that it doesn’t rub off on my boyfriend’s collar, either. Plenty of other people would be pissed to get a both hug and makeup all over their shoulders in one go. Does common sense and basic courtesy really need to be redefined in terms of men?
Some of the other tips weren’t just unnecessary, however, they were irritating and—dare I say it—borderline offensive. The two hair tips were pretty bad—one suggested hairstyles should be constructed so that men can run their fingers through it at a whim, and the other insisted that hair accessories are kept to a minimum because “guys like us to keep things pretty simple.” Now, I’m all for simple and elegant looks, but if you want to go all out crazy, don’t not do it because guys want your hair to be simple. Either do it because you like how it looks, or don’t do it because it looks silly in general.
Those are the irritating. And now, the borderline-offensive.
Breaking news: black, glittery, and patterned nail polish intimidate guys and freak them out. “Play it safe with a timeless red or a pale neutral.” Okay, Allure, thanks for reinforcing the fact that as a woman, I should never stand out or do anything that might make men the least bit uncomfortable. Even if it’s with…my fingernails.
“Nothing says “I’ve given up” as succinctly as leg stubble.”
I, for one, shave my legs. Quite frequently. I don’t like the feeling of stubble. But sometimes I just don’t want to take the time to do it, and sometimes I don’t feel like subjecting myself to the contortion act that shaving in my dorm shower requires. Just because I sometimes go for days at a time without shaving does NOT, by any means, mean that “I’ve given up,” and I would be astounded if someone suggested to me that it did. It is not any woman’s responsibility to take care to be “touchable” at all times. This is 2012, I thought we’d established by now that women are not objects.
It’s pretty clear that there are only so many beauty tips to go around; why else would a prominent women’s magazine throw out things like this repackaged as revolutionary ideas? What I don’t understand, however, is why these magazines can’t grasp that our morning routines are not for the men around us. They are for ourselves, or at least, they certainly should be.