Tag Archives: food is beautiful

Meat Mask

“Many Parisian ladies….bind their faces with thin slices of raw beef.  It may not be pleasant to contemplate, but it prevents and removes wrinkles as nothing else will.”  Amy Ayer, Facts For Ladies (1908)

Since we’re on a French and food kick, I thought I’d give this one a try, because it’s been awhile since I’ve done a really challenging, possibly disgusting stunt.  I used pub-style shaved steak, thinking it would be easier to mold into a mask.  It wasn’t, because it’s meat and it’s not supposed to go on your face.

Glad SOMEONE had fun

Glad SOMEONE had fun

But Ian did a lovely job of squishing and layering it onto the contours of my skin, it’s cold, clammy greasiness filling up every pore.  I immediately became an all-you-can-eat buffet for my cat, Bosco, and immediately regretted my choice.  When you begin to believe that seeing R.I.P.D. was the BEST decision you made all evening, there’s a problem. Honestly, I thought it would be a nice way to relax.

Unlike a clay masque, I wouldn’t be able to sit up and read or relax in a tub.  I would have no choice but to lay on my back, breathe deep and listen to some MST3K (episode choice: It Lives By Night) a luxury I don’t get very often.  But since I couldn’t speak (for fear of it falling off my chin and down my shirt) I ended up feeling very isolated and sad.

I lasted all of about 20 minutes with it on and then it started to get warm and gross and flake off down my neck.  I DID feel my skin tightening, maybe, but the creepy meat smell and the fear of salmonella was NOT worth it.  We have lovely clay masks now, or oatmeal, or I can just age and accept my wrinkles with Ponds heavy cream and grace, the way all three of my grandmothers have.

And all that grease must have gone into my pores, because I woke up with a big mystery mound forming on my chin, as well as some clogged spots and blotches on my cheeks.  THANKS FRANCE.

Cornflake Girl

“Mix one cup yellow cornmeal with two tablespoons salt, then take about three tablespoons in a dish and moisten slightly.  Part hair and work over the scalp, but don’t rub too hard and irritate scalp.  Then shake and work rest of the dry mixture through the hair.  Now bend over and shake out the loose corn meal, out in the sun if possible, or let dry ten minutes and brush out with a stiff brush to remove the rest.”  Hazel Theresa Gifford, Fundamentals of Beauty (1944).

I hate washing my hair.  For me, an awesome hair day is a rarity, an accidental surprise that I cannot replicate, so when one does come along, I don’t want to just rinse it out and will try to hold onto it as long as possible.

ImageSo while this is messy, but it WORKS.  Yesterday I put curling gel in my hair, then slept in a sauna-like bedroom all night, followed by YET ANOTHER sweltering upstate NY day, all of which are MURDER on hair.  But I gave this a shot (which also gave me an excuse to go to the air conditioned grocery store) and my hair looks completely fresh and new.  There’s cornmeal all over the deck, sure, but nothing a broom or a good rainstorm can’t fix.

I have short hair, so next time, I could probably halve this recipe.  Also, don’t do it in your work clothes, or anything black, or if you’re inside, any clothes at all, because it gets EVERYWHERE, making you look like you joined an asbestos removal team in your pajamas.  And careful when you stand up, because it will go RIGHT DOWN your back and wind up in your area.


Moist As I Wanna Be

“For softer skin, rub rich sour cream into your body before you take a shower, then let the water rinse it away” Barbara Walden, Easy Glamour (1981) 


Yummy . . .?

My first attempt at bizarre beauty was from my own kitchen.  When Matthew came to visit, he made goulash, and left a whole bucket of sour cream in our fridge.  I don’t like sour cream on anything; might as well put it to practical use . . . for vanity.

The application was not pleasant.  It was cold and slimy going on, as expected, and the scent of sour cream warming on human flesh in front of a space heater is not exactly appealing.

What surprised me is that it actually worked.  The stink was gone pretty quickly.  My skin was noticeably softer, sort of velvety.  However, it didn’t feel well moisturized, just a little dewy.  Think I’ll stick with Vitamin E oil instead.