New Me


In an attempt to prevent myself from touching my face, I’ve started wearing makeup.

I mean, I’ve always worn a *little* bit of makeup: eyeliner, mascara, eyebrow pencil. Maybe a little lip color if I was feeling especially motivated. But I always subscribed to the philosophy of less-is-more: I would wear a little bit of makeup to look made up rather than a lot of makeup to look “natural”.

With the onset of This Whole Corona Thing, I’ve recently learned that I’m terrible about touching my face. I rest my chin on my hand. I rub my eyes. I scratch my nose. I press my fingers to my cheeks to try to open up my sinuses. I bite my cuticles when they get rough. And so on. And I do it without even thinking about it.

“Don’t touch your face!” They say. Well, easier said than done. But you know who’s good at not touching their faces? Women who wear a lot of makeup. Women who have put time and effort into their Look and don’t want to mess it up. I’ve always been pretty scornful of this kind of behavior because I thought it was vain and pretentious. WELL, LOOK AT ME NOW.

Le sigh.

At any rate, I now Put On A Face each morning. And it’s actually helping: I’m still pretty bad about how much I touch my face, but I’m a lot more aware that I’m doing it. And a surprising advantage to This Whole Quarantine Thing has been the freedom from public scrutiny, so I feel free to play with colors and styles that I’d normally be too self-conscious to wear out of the house. It’s extraordinarily freeing: I’m having a good time experimenting, and maybe when this is all over I’ll have settled into a look I particularly like and feel comfortable in.

One can hope.

~ by Gwydhar Gebien on March 25, 2020.

5 Responses to “New Me”

  1. Unless you are touching your face every time you meet someone, you’re okay, I think. If we let all the talk about this bug get to us, we’ll be doing the Hokey Pokey on hot coals while answering Joe’s boss, who’s always telling us what to turn or push with our hands, feet and head. Just don’t stress out about this stuff. If we’re gonna get it, if we’re gonna die, it’s been decided by the fates or a higher power. But…DO exercise good hygiene. Washing hands is fair. But, be reasonable, not paranoid. Otherwise, the world’s going back to the 60s with the bomb scare and bunkers for nothing. We survived bird flu and crypto-sporidium back in the Crystal Pepsi days, right?

    Isn’t applying makeup or taking it off ALSO at risk of touching your face? Or, maybe putting the makeup on will cause you to resist washing it off and then getting clogged pores and such.

    I am mildly amused by your specifications of normal versus made-up. 😛 You and your naturally pale skin tone and saucy hair.

    I touch my face, often, too. But, now that I’ve been made conscious of it, I try to steer my fingers differently. I still use my nails and knuckles to do things my fingerTIPS normally do. I just try to avoid stroking my face after working with other people.

    If you’re not socializing, you don’t have to be paranoid about touching yourself in your own home.

    Biting your cuticles isn’t touching…it’s ingesting. 😛

    I KNOW. You like to put things on your face. How about wearing a mask? 😛 You can be silly and creative socially, and people will understand while you shield yourself from excessive touching.

    • I’m not so much paranoid as I am trying to practice good habits now while the stakes are low. For me, makeup feels more comfortable than a mask but I might change my mind on that.

      • A mask wouldn’t likely be socially common/comfortable, considering anyone wearing masks, now, is likely wearing one that might work okay in surgery. But, if you’re not going anywhere, just at home and concerned about your hands and face, it might be fun to wear some cheap/silly costume mask, versus makeup. When out and about, try keeping a napkin or tissue in hand to remind yourself when you reach for your face…you’ll stop short when you realize you have the paper in there…or, you’ll likely touch less of your face if the paper touches first.

      • Good advice- I’ve definitely found it helpful to have a tissue in hand since I often have to dab at my eyes anyway and it does help.

      • Yep. Works for me.

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