Saturday, December 09, 2006

Three Things That Are Difficult (If Not Impossible) to Find

You know the old chestnut about how cosmetic companies deliberately discontinue their popular products, because this forces women to buy a lot of other products to find which one they like almost as much? This is probably why fashion moves so quickly nowadays. It's not like eveningwear is so much BETTER than it used to's not advancing because of technological innovation, as is the case with computers or cars or storage media. No, eveningwear changes for several OTHER reasons, and one of them is probably to make women buy new stuff.

That's also why the average women's clothing tends to be so disposable and shoddy -- when it falls apart they have to buy a new one -- but I digress. I'm not here to root out marketing conspiracies, I'm hear to heave a bitter sigh about important cosmetics I can no longer find.
  1. Black eyelash glue. A few years ago you could always find two types of eyelash glue: black or clear. The black stuff is sort of ugly and it gums up, but you WANT your eyelashes to be black. The clear stuff turns into a rubbery white goop that discolors your eyelashes. For those of us who wear the same pair of lashes until they begin to look like a hockey player's teeth or a dessicated centipede, clear glue sucks. I can't find black glue anymore at any pharmacy, and the cosmeticians always say "hmmm" when I point this out to them.
  2. Max Factor Panstick. It's absolutely essential for anybody who needs to hide their face, and it's a standard that goes all the way back to the 1920s when it was first developed for movie stars. In 2001 I could buy this everywhere. In 2003 most pharmacies stopped carrying it and I could only find it in department stores. In 2005 even the department stores were hiding their Max Factor products in a dark unlabelled corner. Now I can't find it at all (though I haven't tried Walmart's my only hope).
  3. Loose Face Powder. When you use Panstick as a base you need to cover it with loose face powder, otherwise you'll look like a greasy automaton. Again, this used to be easy to find, but in the last two years I've needed to switch brands twice as the companies I patronized stopped making it. I guess everybody's using that new liquid/powder combination product that I've never tried. Fortunately I CAN still find loose face powder, but I need to shop around a lot to find my colour.
So if you have a girlfriend who hordes makeup -- and bras and hair accessories -- now you know why. It's because she's smart and she knows that someday, without warning, it'll all get snatched away from her.


VanillaJ said...

Amen! I ran into serious problems when Almay decided to stop making (or drugstores stopped carrying) "Clean & Clear" face powder. This seemed to be the only brand that didn't give my olive skin that fucking orange undertone, or some peaches & cream complexion that was totally wrong when you consider that the colour of my neck had to sit in juxposition to my face. Then, by the grace of gawd, they brought it back! I buy to units of this stuff at a time because my insecurity has been justified.

Muffy St. Bernard said...

But Vanilla, just think: you could have had a peaches & cream complexion just by using MORE powder (on neck, shoulders, chest, limbs...well, everywhere). That would make the cosmetic companies even happier!

Maybe they brought it back because people complained. Maybe I should try that. I could possibly have leverage with Panstick and loose powder, but a single tube of eyelash glue lasts me about six years.

VanillaJ said...

Speaking of which - I watched "Caberet" last night for the first time. It appears Liza Minnelli hasn't updated her look in 40 sum years. Fake eyelashes are definately the iconic trademark for this woman with the Disney style maw & nose, giving her a perpetual munchkin appearance. No wonder she is the emblem of choice for many drag queen impersonators...her soft shell says 'unthreatening', yet she is repulsive enough to confirm you'd never want to sleep with her. Especially since she'd end up stealing your horded Panstick stash. Crazy bitch.

Muffy St. Bernard said...

God, "Disney-style maw and nose" is right! I've always thought Liza was horrific...a grossly exaggerated, self-rightous version of her mother (who was already a gross exaggeration).

I DID like Cabaret, but I liked it IN SPITE of her. Moreso, I love watching Andrea Martin do "Lorna Minelli" on SCTV: "I don't want to rely on the memory of my mother's success, I'm my own woman! And now for my song: Soooomewhere oooover the raiiiinbow..."