Now that I'm over 40, I'm officially 'getting older'. Oh, there's plenty of life left in me. In no way am I trying to say that being over 40 is old. But my children let me know all the time that I'm just not as young as I used to be. And I can't really argue the point.
Anyway, one of the perils of getting older - at least in my world - is the increased growth of facial hair. It started with one mutant hair -- which I plucked -- and was quickly followed by others. It was kinda like trying to cut off the head of a hydra -- every time I plucked one troublesome hair two or three (or more) grew in its place.
So last weekend I looked in the mirror at my chin fuzz and calculated the number of hairs that would need to be yanked out by the root.
(answer: a lot)
I don't need to tell you that plucking can be painful, do I?
As luck would have it I found a small bottle of Nair -- specifically designed for facial hair -- in the bathroom closet. I vaguely remembered buying it, and decided to use it in the war against the downy forest on my chin and lip.
I followed the instructions almost to the letter. The instructions called for a thick layer to be smoothed over the area to be de-haired. I opted for a thin layer. I don't know why I deviated from the prescribed plan -- it would really suck to run around the house with a pink goatee only to discover NONE of the hair had been evicted. But a thin layer it was and I thank GOD for this alteration because in the end it saved me.
No, I'm not being overly dramatic. It saved me.
The Nair kinda tingled when I first put it on, but I didn't think much of it. The mocking words of my children stung more than anything happening on my face. I guess it's not every day you see your mother in a pink goatee, but they certainly didn't hold back!
I waited the 4 minutes (maybe not even that long) then washed it off.
HOLY MOTHER OF GOD!
My face was on FIRE. I wet a wash cloth and held it to my chin/lip for awhile, but it wasn't getting any better so I turned to Dr. Google and saw many people recommended aloe and/or something with lidocaine. Off I went to rummage through my cupboard, wondering if I'd have to run out to the store to buy a truckload of concealer and foundation to hide the inflamed rash so I could go to work in a semi-presentable state in the morning.
(Note to self: You should save all cosmetic alterations for Saturdays so you have a full day to recover or camouflage if necessary)
I gasped when I caught a glimpse of myself in the mirror. I had a red rash all around my mouth (distinctly goatee shaped).
As a general rule, I don't like goatees on men, so I dang sure didn't like the look on me. Especially since it was all red and puffy looking. It looked like it hurt.
Luckily, I had sunburn relief gel on hand with both aloe and lidocaine. I slathered it on and felt immediate relief. It was still red and irritated, but it didn't hurt anymore. A big plus.
It was about that time I remembered why I had stashed the cream in the farthest reaches of the closet. It would have been nice to remember this BEFORE I coated a big fat ring around my upper lip and chin, but one of the other perils of getting older is losing your razor-sharp memory. Mine is now roughly equivalent to one of those cheap plastic knives with the serrated edge.
First, Nair apparently irritates the heck out of my skin. Second, when the hair starts to grow back my lip feels decidedly STUBBLY. Ewwww. Girls should not ever have prickly lips. You'd think I'd have remembered that part at least. Third, some of my hairs have trouble breaking through the surface again so I get a lot of boil-like pimples/infected hairs on my chin.
Real attractive picture, isn't it?
The only good part is my husband has (ironically) been growing a beard so he'll never be able to feel my stubble as long as he's all bearded up. I hope he refrains from shaving until I've recovered!