14 Beauty Rituals Men Will Never Understand

women wearing heelsThere's no ideal place to get into a tiff with your significant other, but at a black-tie family wedding just before his birthday and Valentine's Day has to be on the list of most inconvenient. But that's what happened with my guy and me this past weekend. We sparred over something which I knew in retrospect would seem really silly: My shoes. I had put together my entire ensemble for said wedding at the last minute, and that meant I was wearing adorable, sexy, but completely new, stiff, and uncomfortable patent leather peep toe pumps all night. When the band started grooving, my instinct was to slip off those bad boys and party rock barefoot. But the BF said it was inappropriate to be sans shoes at a black-tie event ...

After an unfortunate 20 or so minutes filled with me stumbling around whimpering and us trading curt words, I figured out what was really at the heart of his issue with my attempt to ditch the heels.


He honestly did not understand that high heels -- as in, 99 percent of them -- are ALWAYS  painful as hell. Maybe not right away, but eventually -- or in my case, an hour into a reception -- they give us blisters, tear up our heels, pinch our pinkie toes 'til they're numb, etc. I explained to him that his well-meaning request for me to "please just try to find more comfortable dress shoes" is simply not an option. It got me thinking ... besides shoes, what other things do women wear or do for the sake of fashion and beauty that (straight, obviously) men will never be able to wrap their heads around? Let's see ...

  1. Eyeliner, especially liquid eyeliner. They want to know why we're trying to poke our eyes out or blind ourselves with something they see as a Magic Marker.
  2. Similarly, eyelash curlers. These terrify men. Are we trying to inflict medieval-style torture on ourselves, they wonder ...
  3. Spanx. Ever have your guy walk in on you as you're trying to put on one of these lifesaving undergarments? It's inevitable when you live with them, but there's absolutely no way to do it gracefully. He's bound to look at you like you're a monkey from outer space.
  4. Threading our eyebrows/face. Again, to them, this looks like a form of scary torture from the Dark Ages. Why are we subjecting ourselves to it? Well, so we don't look like monkeys from outer space, that's why! Hellooooo.
  5. Changing outfits ... more than two or three times. This leads them to believe that we are indeed crazy. Or at the very least, super indecisive. We're just trying to look nice -- for them!
  6. Putting on makeup in general. They say they like us better barefaced, and that's sweet and all, but sometimes a girl just needs a little mascara to look awake, am I right? 
  7. Having an arsenal of various eye shadows, blushes, mascaras, lip glosses, etc. in a train case you may rarely, if ever, use. Who knows when you might need that fire engine red cream blush or that lip plumping gloss? Plus, it cost $20, so you totally plan on using it at some point. Just like he has his tools, you have this. Why is that so strange?
  8. Carrying a clutch purse we can't fit much of anything in. Sorry, it's not designed to hold the keys or his camera! Just my lipstick, iPhone, ID, and some cash thankyouverymuch.
  9. Carrying a huge purse we can fit everything in. Sometimes we just want to rock a big huge bag!
  10. Wearing big sunglasses. We're thinking of emulating Jackie O. or Audrey H., but they're thinking Nicole Richie or Kim Kardashian. Ick.
  11. Collecting jewelry! So what if we have to start using dresser drawers to store our Lia Sophia and Jewelmint collections? Hrrmpf. A woman can never have too many accessories to accentuate her wardrobe.  
  12. Shopping online. From web sample sales to HauteLook.com to Birchbox and everything in between, I'm pretty sure guys will never get why we're stalking that Kate Spade or Lilly Pulitzer or Coach sale that starts ... at ... 3 a.m. EST!
  13. Using various hair products. Some guys seem to understand this. As in, the ones who are weird about their hair. But there's also a limit to even what they understand. Their product vocabulary is one note: They just want their hair to look good. We, on the other hand, need options -- curling mousse, straightening gel, straighteners, curlers, anti-frizz, beachy spray, practical shampoo and maybe a frivolous, fun-scented one, etc.
  14. Taking time. It takes time to look lovely and put-together. We ladies do not have the luxury of just being able to, in the immortal words of one Cher Horowitz, "fall out of bed and put on some baggy pants and take our greasy hair -- ew -- and cover it up with a backwards cap" like guys. We care more than that, and that's just something they really should take their time to understand.

What beauty/fashion habit do you have that your man will never understand?


Image via momo/Flickr

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