According to a research conducted by Co-Operative Insurance, an average woman will spend £180,000 on skin care, hair and nail products, spa treatments, perfumes, cosmetics and dietary regimes, all for the sake of looking good and appearing younger. This is money, Co-Operative Insurance insists, that is better off as a contribution towards retirement and when you think about it, that’s a whopping $ 375,000!!!
After I read this, I thought, this couldn’t possibly be true which got me to add up all the expenses I’d incurred on beauty stuff just for this year. And to my horror, with the year not even over yet, I discovered that I had already spent close to $5000 and on what? An atrocious haircut where the hairdresser didn’t even cut my hair evenly that I spent the next week tilting my head to the side and red highlight fill-ins that only made my hair dry and brittle? Hair salon shampoo & conditioners that provide the same results as Pantene? The plethora of SKII products that caused my skin to break out? Those tiny, expensive boosters that are supposed to make your skin glow but don’t? And to think this was the year I made the conscious effort to spend less on beauty products! Calculating the amount I’d spent in the past years since I got that bee in my bonnet to try and look like one of those white-toothed girls (and don’t get me started on those darn teeth-whitening products) in magazines, it horrifies me to know that the amount I’d spent all up could have been a sufficient deposit on my dream house or three first-class trips around the world!
I’m all for indulging myself once in a while – getting massages and facials for de-stressing and relaxation and that is something I’m not ready to give up. But I can no longer justify spending thousands of dollars a year on products that, let’s face it, probably only 15% of which have delivered what were promised.
Does this mean that I will be stopping by pharmacies en route to a party to utilise their cosmetics testers? Or registering on various websites so I can get free samples of cleansers and moisturisers? Probably no to the first one and yes to the latter. But from now on, I will venture into a hair salon not to while away two hours of a Sunday but because I have six months’ worth of split ends; bypass perfume counters that only make me sneeze for scented body lotions; scoff at eye creams and lip plumpers because there is no way I am ever going to look like Angelina Jolie without undergoing cosmetic surgery; and scour the web for home-made recipes of scrubs and masks. Call me a cheapskate but I do have my retirement to think about after all.