Monday, 29 November 2010

I wear black on the outside 'cause black is how I feel on the inside

Subbing today. Went through the mock exam all morning, then worked on our double page spreads in the afternoon. Mine is starting to look very much like a real magazine page, although subman wouldn't stop trying to mess with it. I explained I wasn't doing the header yet, but did he listen? No, he took up 10 minutes of my time messing around with it because he liked the typeface I had chosen, and got in the way of all the actual work I had to do. We're supposed to get these signed off as all our own work, but he keeps interfering! Rant over.

So, today was day one of my mysterious challenge for the magazine...
I swear my nose doesn't usually look like that...
I'm wearing black lipstick for a week. Granted, that doesn't actually sound too bad, but having undergone a day of it, I have to say it's a big change. I'm going to be writing about it for the magazine, and other people will be doing other challenges (trying out fake tans (postponed due to excessive aroma of biscuits, last I heard), cutting out caffeine, trying weird diets, switching forms of transport, that sort of thing) and writing pieces about them, and hopefully it should all come together beautifully. Possibly we should tie in something about blogging, I'm not sure. In my laziness, I plan to lift pretty much whatever I blog this week for my article, so you get to read the first draft! Aren't you lucky?

Today has been very new and exciting, so I'll try to break it all down into manageable chunks.

People's reactions:

These have varied. My score for today is about 20 funny looks, 2 wolf-whistles and a compliment. 

People who know me have been aware that I'm doing some sort of vaguely secretive something, and weren't too surprised. Lady Zorro had lent me some nice black nail polishes to match, so I'm a little bit goth (also helped by the fact I overslept and the first available clothing was pretty much all black. I wear a lot of black anyway, but I admit I was feeling a touch Morticia today) but my magazine course buddies took it in their stride. 

Strangers were different. I got a decent round of odd looks (starting with a man on the train who watched me put it on, whose mystified fascination grew as it got darker and darker (did I mention I'm using a very cheap lipstick? It's from Miss Sporty, and cost less than £3. I would advise anyone planning on trying it out to go for something a little more expensive and less like food colouring)) and I might just be being paranoid, but the train guard on my journey home actually took my ticket out of my hand to examine it, whereas they usually just glance at them. It seems I am unnerving authority figures. The lovely Indian men who run the local CostCutter or what have you were also a bit confused, and much less chatty. Men definitely reacted more than women, who barely glanced at me with a seen-it-all expression, for the most part. 

Actual experience:

I would have to give this 5/10. It's been a reasonably fun experience so far, but... I think my problem is less with the black than the lipstick. I'm just not used to wearing it (or at least, wearing such a dark colour, which can smudge, rub off and affix itself to my teeth so readily), and my lips are feeling pretty dehydrated already. The constant re-application necessary to keep to the challenge (and ensure that I have black rather than greyish-red lipstick on) was a bit tiring, and the tendency of the lipstick to get everywhere left me with rather a scary-looking fork at lunchtime. 

I forgot about it towards the end of this afternoon, and gave myself a bit of a fright in the bathroom mirror. 

Fashion potential:

Well, they do say black goes with everything... Black lipstick is also apparently quite High Fashion at the moment, which is nice. I'm not sure if it's very fashionable the way I was wearing it, though. Perhaps one day this week I will Goth It Up and see what happens. 

From a Beauty perspective, I'm not sure black is really me. I'm pale enough as it is (see picture above (although some of that has got to be the flash, right?)) and I tend to gravitate towards nice pinks and pretty colours to make me look alive. Black lipstick is not about looking alive. It is about looking like a statue, a zombie, or (in extreme cases) a frostbite victim. But in a good way. (I think...) 

It does make my teeth look very white, though. 

Personal reaction:

I can't say I've changed much. I was a bit grumpy on the way home, but commuting usually does that to me, and I perked up for the actual walk from the station. I'd say I've been slightly more self-conscious than usual, but that's understandable and for Science. I'm just me with a terrifying smile. 

In conclusion: 

Actually, I'm nowhere near reaching a conclusion on this yet. I haven't really decided why I'm doing this yet. Ostensibly, it's because Angelface (yeah, try and work that one out) told me to (she wants to see my wicked side, apparently - didn't realise I'd been hiding it that well), but I'm also trying to justify it with all sorts of claptrap about fashion/beauty and social and psychological experiments... We'll just have to see. I guess a very SATC way of putting it would be: can a lipstick change my life? Answer: no, but it might just stain my teeth. 

Right, off to make supper. Any suggestions for how to make this week successful/more interesting/profitable most welcome.

P.S.: Thanks to Superchef for taking the picture! And keeping me entertained for yet another bus journey. 

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