skulking ground

Follow our family of Cunning(ham) Foxes on our turbulent travels around Oz

1 Comment

Gilding the Lillies

“To adorn unnecessarily something that is already beautiful”

I’m in the sun a lot. Living out of my Toyota Hiace doesn’t give you much option. The sun swelters you out of the tin can by around 8.30am. So inevitably I was at the GP the other day, attending to the usual Aussie skin cancer scare, when I saw the measurements in front of me – part Saline solution, part Botulinium Toxin.

I was tempted to say, ‘Doc, while you’re there stitching up that hole in my head maybe you could add a little less furrow to my brow?’

A little less worry in this worried mind.

This toxin, commonly known as Botox to it’s adoring fans, has become so easily accessible that it is funded by the government in the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme available for the right price at the local 24-hour Medical Centre. Botox has many genuine medicinal benefits but it’s the issue of vanity that I’m most disinterested in. In response to all those Women in their 20’s reaching for their Medicare cards and puckering their duck face desires all over Facebook.

It makes me cringe – oh wait that would give me wrinkles. It makes me stare straight-faced into the distance with rage.  It’s like watching bad daytime television. But wait there’s more. It’s not just Botox used as a flavor enhancer. Women of all ages are stuffing and puffing, lifting and shifting their birthrights, transforming themselves into Hollywood holographs to appear as extras in the latest horror film. Real Housewives of Hell!

This flawless feline face has become fashionable, an uncontrolled social experiment. Like cane toads in Queensland, pouty lips are popping up and down the East Coast everywhere. From Port Douglas to Portland, rich old ladies adorned with crocodile clutches and turkey gobbles stay taut in the glinting sun. Or sit outside Sababba on Hall St in Bondi with a saucy Algerian and watch the fake tans go by. It’s a fun game of spot the surgical procedure. A little butt filler here. A little (or a lot) of breast augmentation there, women floating out to sea, buoyant in their new double D’s.

Why do all these beautiful young (and old) women need to dissect and inject? Cover over in shimmering bronzer what was already a unique and distinguished flower? Have we climbed so far into the looking glass that we can’t get out? Like the prominent Lily, we are all made with different markings and come in a variety of shapes and colours. The bees lose their way if the flowers are in hiding.

I’m sure we don’t need half the crap we buy. I’m sure we don’t need to look better in photos just to have them liked by some guy you once met at a party. But make-up is addictive – you get used to the way you look with it on, feel better about yourself, people comment and pretty soon you can’t go outside without a little black kohl and mascara. You begin to feel ugly without it. Time drives on and gravity catches up in the fast lane. A life well-lived needs more concealing. So the needle replaces the brush, the scalpel cuts the skin, and all the wax statues of Madam Tussauds are suddenly wandering the streets in a permanent state of shock, eating the brains of confused adolescents.

The beauty industry is a multi-billion-dollar monster business fueled by the insecurities of men and women, constantly harassed by highly stylised and inaccurate images of the most exquisite flowers. The masses search for eternal youth, wanting to fill their crucible, spreading aborted fetus on their faces in the pursuit of pollination. Undermining the simple resplendent beauty of nature, without the need of artificial colours and/or preservatives. It’s our society’s perception of beauty that needs to change, not the individual.

But what do I know?

I’m just a saggy boobed, baggy-eyed hippy who lives out of her car and smells like celery.