Making Up Is Hard To Blue

Ah, the festive season.  A time when most women look forward to getting dolled up with glamorous makeup and swanky little cocktail dresses.  (I said swanky, not skanky.  Don’t put words in my mouth.)

I, on the other hand, try to attend only events where I can wear jeans and swill beer in my usual bare-faced comfort.

Once upon a time, I wore makeup.  And by “once upon a time”, I don’t mean, literally, “once”.  I mean there was a time in my life, decades ago, when I actually wore it frequently.  There are many good reasons why I stopped wearing it.  Here’s one of them.

Blue eyeshadow was fashionable when I was in junior high school.  I was a geeky kid.  The eyeshadow package had instructions.  What could possibly go wrong?

My younger sister was involved in a school Christmas concert.  Mom had to be there early to help out, and Dad was to bring me along later, in time for the actual performance.

Feeling very grown-up, I decided to wear my new eyeshadow.  The package contained two shades of vivid blue.  I read the instructions carefully.  They said something like, “Apply darker shade on eyelid and blend lighter shade up to brow bone”.

This confused me.  I thought eyeshadow was supposed to go on the eyelids.  My brow bone seemed a helluva long way up there.

I spent a short time puzzling over the exact definition of “brow bone”, but I didn’t think there was a hidden meaning.  I seem to recall actually looking it up in the encyclopedia to make sure I’d gotten it right (I told you I was a geek).  No alternate definitions for “brow bone”.

Little did I know that researching “brow bone” was the wrong approach.  I should have researched the word “blend”.  Or maybe looked in a fashion magazine to see how the real makeup artists did it, though that’s an iffy proposition at best.

Cheerfully oblivious to better judgement, I smeared blue eyeshadow all the way up to my eyebrows.

Dad made no comment, and off we went.

We arrived in the already dimmed auditorium and found seats.  Just before the show began, my mother arrived to join us.  I distinctly remember the look of horror on her face, but I can’t remember exactly what she said.  The gist of her reaction was, “You let her go out looking like that?!?”

To which Dad replied with his usual honesty, “It all looks awful to me.  I couldn’t tell the difference.”

I’d like to say I learned my lesson that night and always applied my makeup tastefully from then on.  Sadly, however, photographic evidence suggests otherwise.  I respectfully submit that I may have been the main reason behind blue eyeshadow’s subsequent decline in popularity.  Don’t say I never did anything for you.

These days, I only wear makeup when I’m having pictures taken, which mercifully only happens once every few years.  I wear the makeup for exactly long enough to have the picture taken, and then I immediately go home and scrub it all off.

Earth tones only.  Never, ever blue eyeshadow.

17 thoughts on “Making Up Is Hard To Blue

  1. In middle school frosted blue eye shadow was my favorite- the kind you wet before you apply, so it goes on extra cakey. I paired that with Sun-In hair lightener for a colorful orange hair / glowing blue eyelids combo. 8]


  2. hahahahahahaha..omg..too funny..I mean..I’m sorry that you ended up with blue eyeshadow all over..but..oh the way you wrote it..hahahah

    I remember the first time I ever got to actually own my own make up was when I started University..sometime in my late teens…around 20 years old ..and that too, lipstick..

    I love watching those Makeup gurus on you tube though..its lovely the way they blend.*giggles remembering your post*..all those lovely colours.


    • At least it was pretty hard to go wrong with lipstick, although I still remember being perplexed when my mother explained to me that you were actually supposed to coordinate lipstick to match your outfit. It was my first introduction to the concept of colours “going together”, and I wasn’t very good at it. Come to think of it, that probably explains a lot about why I didn’t do well as an interior designer…


  3. My first experience with makeup was when my step-father volunteered to teach me how to apply it. Little did I know that his experience with applying makeup was helping to do stage makeup for years at some theater. I went to school looking like a circus clown. I still think he did that on purpose.


    • Try number 7 from boots. Totally hypoallergenic apparently. I’m only slightly allergic,(as in slightly itchy/irritated) but I always use hypoallergenic makeup, as, if powered eyeshadow gets in your eye and it isn’t hypoallergenic and doesn’t dissolve in you eye, it ends up welding itself to the back of the eyelid making your eyes sore all the time and it is impossible to wear contacts. My friend had this, so she now have a line of silver eyeshadow welded to the underside of her eyelid. We both switched to hypoallergenic after that.


  4. I like the ‘It all looks awful to me – I couldn’t tell the difference’ comment! Don’t quote me, Diane, as I’m not up to speed on these things, but I’ve heard high blue eyeshadow is coming back with a vengeance…


  5. This post was close to perfect. I must say had you re-created that evening with a photo of your BLUE LIDDED eyes, it would have achieved perfection.
    I laughed so hard.
    I still remember my wearing make up in Grade 9. I had a line around my face where the make up ended and white pale skin showed. it was as though I painted a mask on. UGLY but I thought myself very stylish. ha ha ha
    “Blend” should be a word we teach our children at the age of reason, whether that be 7, 10 or 15 or in many cases NEVER….


    • I tried so hard to find that photo! I came across it a long time ago, but apparently it mercifully disappeared sometime in the last couple of decades. It wasn’t actually taken during this particular event, but it was still funny (and horrifying). I’m not sure if I’m glad or sorry I couldn’t find it. 🙂


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