Thursday, March 28, 2013

"In the dark times and the hard questions...

...let some sunshine in your mind." Love The World You Find by The Flaming Lips

So you know how I hate working out? Well, I'm working out these days to pay for all those pregnancy cravings. Perhaps we'll go into more detail later (if it ever makes any kind of difference!) but in the meantime, I'm more interested in a related issue.

Ok people. Let's talk standards here.

Some girls toss their hair up and go work out and don't care what they look like (and some girls end up looking awesome doing it.) But some of us just...can't. I have told you before how I cannot leave the house without doing something to my face/hair/etc. When I ran cross country in high school (Ugh, I do regret not trying a little harder--thanks for pushing me, Mr. F, I'm paying for my lethargy now!) I remember that the mother of a fellow runner made some comments about me wearing eyeliner whenever we ran, even at 5 in the morning. She said something about how I have a problem if I can't just roll out of bed and go running without worrying how I look (and I mean, I didn't put on a ton of makeup or anything, just a little smear of eyeliner and mascara to keep from looking...gross).

Add to that memes like this, and I've always felt guilty after that for trying to look nice when I exercised. Which adds to my dislike of exercise all together. Which makes me not like how I look, which makes it harder to look nice...and so the vicious cycle goes. So I finally told myself that it is fine to care about how I look when I work out, and that makes me more inclined to do so.

Perhaps it's vanity but...I don't want to go out in public looking like death. I mean, if I'm exercising to lose weight/look good/be healthy, why would I spend all that time looking AWFUL? Doesn't that seem counter productive? I mean, I know some people love running or love exercising just for the activity's sake, but I loathe sweat. And I hate being ugly - there is enough ugly in the world without me adding to it.

Surely I'm not the only one.

Regardless, here's a quick sweat-proof hairstyle that I wear whenever I exercise...or if I'm hanging out with a hair-grabbing baby and I only have a minute to do my hair. (Bonus: pictures of aforesaid wiggly, hair-grabbing baby!)

All you do is part your hair deep on one side, french braid just the top and clip with bobby pins to secure, then add a messy bun or twisted pony-tail and you're done! I've also seen someone french braid it and that looks awesome on some girls (not on me). This style works best with textured or dirty hair, so if you're hair is too straight, I'd highly recommend some of this to give it a little personality.

Happy crunching, ya'll. Mwah!


Marianne said...

So cute! How is it that some people really can just roll out of bed and look adorable? I'm not one of them. :)

The Minnesotan with the German-Irish Name said...

I've been thinking about this since you posted. I'm definitely of the same mindset as that homeschool mom. Make-up for exercising? Not a chance. In fact, make-up almost anytime is something I do for fun, not out of a sense of obligation or necessity.

For me, if I feel like I have to get made up, it's because I'm going through an insecure phase about my looks, and that's not something I want to give into. If the face/hair/skin God gave me looks "gross" or "like death" or "ugly" without makeup, I feel like it's right for me to be okay with that.

And I don't think I am gross/ugly without make-up. I try to keep my skin healthy, and I like my features.

So, I guess I'd like to know: Have I ever looked like a slob to you? It's important to me to look nice, and I think I do look good, although it's a very natural look. I really hope people aren't saying to themselves "Elsa could look nice; it's too bad she's given up."

The Minnesotan with the German-Irish Name said...

Maybe I'm being over-pious about the "God made me this way" thing! I don't know! It's something I've always struggled with.

Kyte said...

Elsa, I can say with heartfelt honesty that you always look pretty, kempt, and put-together to me. It would never occur to me to call you a slob, nor would I put you in the category of women who have "given up." (Where we are now I come across ladies who have truly given up, and not just for while their kids are babies! Eek!) Yes, yours a natural look, but you have (or at least I've always thought you have) good skin, good hair, and solid fashion sense. :)

Not everyone wants/needs/ought-to-have style including heavy eyeliner (which is what I lean toward) but I have found for myself that a look I can achieve with the least possible effort that doesn't make me personally look sloppy includes eyeliner.

I'll go into my history of why I am the way I am about this in some other post, but I would consider this more of a cultural difference than a right or wrong issue, though of course I am open to being wrong. I wouldn't call it being overly pious at all! I too like how God made me; what I don't like is the effects of how my failure to get sleep, eat a perfect diet, handle stress, and fit within our cultural standards of beauty (in other words, the effects of living in a fallen world!) detracts from my perfectly reasonable measure of attractiveness, And my small contribution of (hopefully) tasteful beauty with a little extra effort to an increasingly ugly world is no commentary on natural beauties such as yourself. :P

Miss you, lady! We gotta visit the Land of Enchantment at same time one of these days!

The Minnesotan with the German-Irish Name said...

Thanks for the answer! I think most of this difference comes from personal taste and family/peer influence. And it's really easy to feel judged by women in the other category because it's so visible but no one talks about it.

Having moved to a rather affluent big-city suburb, I've discovered I'm pretty critical of women who are always dressed in trendy new clothes, have their hair professionally colored, and get regular mani/pedis. Partly I think they're vain or poor stewards, or have bad priorities. Partly I'm self-righteous about not being vain. Partly I'm jealous because I know I look "poor" compared to them, and I really, really hate that feeling.

So that's what I'm dealing with.

(As it happens, my mother is a make-up-every-day person, and I find it fascinating that she did not pass that on to me. When I was growing up, she provided my first set of make up, but it was more in the spirit of an option I could take if I wanted, rather than something I ought to do because I was growing up. We never really talked much about appearance [with the one weird exception of lots of discussion of our color seasons].)

Anyway, do you have any plans for NM this summer? We'll be going at some point, but I haven't made plans yet and we're really flexible!