Friday, January 1, 2010

Lash-ing Out

It all started last October when my marriage was struggling, and my then 14-month-old daughter A’s first real-deal Halloween was imminent. My daughter's father and I had originally agreed to take her to our local park together, but then before we knew it, our communication had broken down, and it was decided that he would move out for the time being.  As strained marriages go, the holidays (even Halloween) can be tricky. He wasn't comfortable attending the event with us anymore. Today wasn't our day to fake a happy threesome.

I felt bare. My daughter and I were about to parade our newly fractured family in front of our entire community. A babbling toddler and her recently laid off, half-whole 34-year-old mother. None of the other parents really knew the truth about our situation -- only I did and that was what mattered.

I dressed A in her Mighty Mouse costume. She was a chubby cheeked dynamo and I was feeling like complete shit. I needed a quick recovery. One of the many beauties of being a parent is the way it forces you to face the moment. I went to my mirror. This was it. I’d had a bad day, and an even worse year, but I was about to turn it all around. I was going to make myself up from the outside in.

Luckily, the simplest swipe of eye-shadow or a touch of blush can pep up my psyche. I look good, people compliment me and I feel better. I remembered that I had a stash of limited edition Shu Uemura False eyelashes (adorned with some fabulous faux-gold pearls) stored away in a fire-engine red make-up case – a jewel-filled leftover from the pre-kid days of when I had time to spend hours primping and preening. I cut them to size and affixed them with a bit of lash glue. And as crazy as it sounds, I felt whole again.

We made it to the party -- both of us in costume. I was surprised to discover that while many of my fellow mothers couldn’t detect my recent wounds they did notice my pearly lashes. And they were amazed that I knew how to apply them. Just the sheer fun of chatting falsies and making lash play-dates with other moms was enough to carry me through the whole event.

Being beautiful is essentially having the will to look good, and the confidence that you can look good. The rest is just know-how and practice. Gaining knowledge, perfecting your technique, discovering that you have the will to do anything you put your mind to – isn’t that what motherhood is about?

If you'd like to test-drive lashes like the ones I wore, try these Mini Crystal False Eyelashes by Shu Uemura ($22). A budget option can be found at My Diva's Closet ($7), but you'll have to trim them yourself. False lashes can take you from weary-mama to Jennifer Lopez in five minutes. They'll instantly line your eyes and add sexy depth to your gaze. And they’re not as hard to work with as you think.

Lashes 1-2-3:

1) Instead of starting at the inner corner of your eye, the false lashes should begin at the inner edge of your iris (the colored part of your eye closest to your nose) and end where your natural lashes do. Hold the falsies up to your lash line to get an idea of where to trim them. Don't worry, this is not an exact science, and you'll get better the more you experiment.

2) Lightly dot the the glue along the base of the false lash and use the applicator to spread the dots into a fine line. Let the glue set for at least 30 seconds (until it gets tacky).

3) Gently but firmly press the false lash, which should curl upwards, along your natural lash line. You can use the opposite end of a pair of tweezers to help secure it -- paying particular attention to the ends. Go back and forth with your index finger a few times, pressing until the lash completely adheres.

For Extra Oomph: Set with a light coat of mascara to combine both your natural and fake lashes together.


Disclaimer: Nuy Cho has no affiliation to any of the beauty companies mentioned on


jay said...

very interesting article though as a man it was more to get into the head of what a woman is thinking. very uplifting and positive writing and no extraneou self absorbed chatter. I like

Nuy Cho said...

Dear Jay: Funny I only see your comment now; 5 years after the fact. I appreciate so much your honest commentary. Thank you sincerely. - Nuy Cho