My mother had an amazing selection of what, with hindsight, was really rather superb maquillage. Pots and potions and tubes of colour, all expertly applied by my mother’s steady hand. Some women love makeup. They start their careers as little girls in the makeup bag and never really crawl out of it ever again. Little girls weren’t necessarily encouraged to paint their eyelids and rouge their cheeks in early 90s Nigeria, and anyway, when I was 11 years old, I went away to an all girls’ boarding school. Even if I had been interested in makeup, I would’ve been denied – the prefects worked on special search and destroy missions. But now, at the grand old age of 27, I have reached a magical place; I’m still ambivalent towards most of the makeup canon, but I can definitively say that I love mascara.
When I was 22, and fresh out of uni, my mother pressed some money into my hand and ordered to buy some makeup. “It’s weird that you don’t wear any,” she said. I went to a well-known brand for women of colour which shall remain anonymous – cough*Iman*cough – and was treated shabbily by the guy on the counter. Still, because I didn’t yet have the brass ones to call him on it, I bought loads of makeup. I didn’t use any of it, until one day about 3 months later, when I stumbled upon my stash. I applied the mascara with an inexperienced hand, and lo! it was good. My eyes looked wider, more awake, more… aware. I looked nigh-on sultry, which is no small feat. I was hooked.
Now, more cosmetics savvy and bolder than I was before, I wear makeup on a day to day basis. Though I barely reach the hem of the fabulously knowledgableVexInTheCity, I’ve learned of the joys of MAC and Bobbi Brown, as well as the miraculous powers of Becca. But I’ve since discovered something just as miraculous. While some brands are clear leaders in terms of foundation, concealer, eyeshadow, lipgloss etc, mascara doesn’t fall into that category. Mascara is classless, brandless, totally egalitarian - all power lies in application. In fact, I’ve found the cheaper, the better. When done right, it doesn’t matter whether it’s vibrating or oscillating or requires a temperature of 37° to remove it from your face. What’s important is that when you put it on, it works its magic and makes you feel fabulous. Which is ehy, in a nutshell, I love mascara. It clearly loves me.