Beginnings of a Beauty Hound

This entry is inspired by Afrobella's Makeup Memories - My First Lipstick, posted a while back.

Some of my earliest memories in life involve fashion and beauty.

In the 1980s, my mom, who is plus-sized herself, worked for a global technology firm and sported the corporate uniform of the day – complete with huge shoulder pads and the big floppy bow (which have made a comeback . . . but I digress . . . . ). Every morning, she would station herself in front of the bathroom mirror and carefully make up her face. And every morning I would watch in fascination.

I remember when I was six years old, a distant cousin of my father’s visited with her teenage son during Christmas vacation. While my parents sat on the couch and talked with our relatives, I was mesmerized by their gift to me – a pink toy makeup set. I don’t remember the brand name; in fact, it probably was an “off brand” from the local Dollar Store. It didn’t matter. All that mattered is that it was pink and pretty. It had a frosty, baby pink lip gloss, some hand lotion and a little bottle of eau de toilette. I instantly tour into the lip gloss, smearing it across my face. Since pink was my favorite color and I always wore pink clothes, I was certain that the gloss would look beautiful on me. (Never mind my cocoa brown coloring – the realities of race and skin tone hadn’t entered into my consciousness yet.) My gleeful, frost-laden lips were met by a contorted grimace by my older teenage cousin. He looked like someone had forced him to eat an entire box of Lemonheads and chase it down with a pack of Sour Patch Kids. Although my little heart sank at his swift verdict on the lip gloss, I took solace in the fact that there were still the lotion and perfume to try.

Those proved to be duds as well. After a couple of days, the lotion gave me a rash on my hands. And my mom made me throw away the eau de toilette because it “stank.”

So yeah. You could say I’ve been in search of the perfect set of products ever since. And, thankfully, I've been somewhat successful. Tomorrow we'll talk about some of my favorite beauty products for the summer. In the meantime, what are some of your early beauty memories? Please share in the comments section!