I know, I promised I’d blog more and here its been a month since my last post. I don’t want to hear about it.
Here’s whats bugging me…mascara. I went to the holy grail of stores the other day, aka Target, and headed to the make up section to get some much needed mascara. And, as always, I was appalled by the price. See the thing is, I don’t wear make up every single day, so it takes me a while to get through a tube of mascara. In that time I always forget how ridiculously expensive it is. Eight bucks for some black coloring. Why? This isn’t ancient Egypt, we no longer have to make it out of antimony, a metal, burnt almonds, lead, oxidized copper, ochre, ash, malachite, or chrysocolla (a blue-green copper ore).* The crazy thing is that this is Target, which means this is the cheapest mascara possible. Higher end places sell it for upwards of $20. Why don’t I just take a sharpie and color on my lashes?
Wait a minute…why DON’T I just use a sharpie? I seriously contemplated this for a good two minutes while standing in the make up aisle. But then I decided that, with my clutzy shaky hands, I would most likely end up stabbing myself in the eye. And since my eyes are the one part of my face that I think is truly beautiful, I decided not to risk Sharpie impalement. Instead, I continued searching until I found a $5 bottle of mascara, it was Cover Girls “Professional” mascara. No major fuss, no promise of making my lashes so long that they become extra appendages, just simple black mascara that will make my baby blues pop a little bit more.
So I was happy I got the mascara, but then I started thinking “Man, make up companies are advertising genius, especially when it comes to mascara.” Think about all the different promises they make:
- This mascara with strengthen your lashes
- This mascara with lengthen your lashes
- This mascara will make your lashes thicker
- This mascara will transform your entire face so you look like Drew Barrymore
They can make these outrageous claims, and there is no way to test them. Have you ever tried to measure your eyelashes to see if the mascara actually made them longer? Its near impossible, they don’t make rulers small enough. What about testing their thickness? Even harder! And honestly, who the hell cares if their lashes are strong or not? What are they holding up? NOTHING! And yet women continue to buy into the advertising and pay too much money for a glorified sharpie.
And that, ladies and gentleman, is why I love advertising. Call me crazy, evil and a terrible person, but learning how to manipulate people’s buying habits is absolutely fascinating to me. I’m going to go watch Mad Men.
*While I didn’t do extensive research on the compounds of Ancient Egyptian make up, I did find a site that listed these things as ingredients. Is it true? I have no idea, but it seems likely.