Monday, December 7, 2009

Diversions: A breakup's best friend

The holidays keep moving along, coming whether I'm ready or not, and I've been thinking about things like dealing with nostalgia ("Breakups vs. The Holidays") and triumphantly putting up my first Christmas tree on my own ("I'm a Christmas-aholic"). But it's still a tough time no matter what. I still have twinges of panic when I'm faced with the holidays and when that happens, I dig into my bag of diversions, take one out, and become my usual compulsive self over it. One of these diversions is one I've mentioned before.

If you know me now, you know I love beauty products and makeup. Actually, no – I don’t just love them; I’m mildly obsessed with them. I think I've become what you might call a “makeup enthusiast,” if you will. After the breakup, I had to put my energy somewhere productive and this was where it went. I guess as far as diversions go, this is a pretty harmless one.

The other day, I met a girl who too is obsessed. As we were discussing our deep love of products, she sheepishly admitted to watching YouTube videos of makeup artists, and makeup enthusiasts, doing makeup tutorials. I then blurted out that I do this too. When you meet someone who indulges in a makeup obsession so deep that they spend whole chunks of their time watching strangers on the internet apply eyeliner, it’s like admitting to having some kind of secret, forbidden obsession. You belong to some underground club; somewhere where the makeup tutorials are hidden behind a red velvet curtain. She went on to tell me that when she watches these tutorials, she does so in private, with her headphones on, so no one can discover what she’s doing. She hides it. I’m telling you, that’s deep.

I think when you go through a breakup (or anything else particularly difficult) you have to channel your energy and mind into something to keep yourself together. It's easy to get sucked into thinking only about what you're going through, becoming fixated, and maybe eventually becoming stuck. To combat this, people turn to hobbies or tasks to divert their energy and give their minds a much needed break. Some people volunteer, devoting their time to bettering their communities in some way, or maybe they take up productive, self-improving hobbies like cycling. One of the many things that I, on the other hand, turned to is something that is, let's face it, pretty self-indulgent.

But here's the thing about me, I have spent a lot of time dealing with other people's mishegas (translation, other people's crazy). I've been in some form of a long-term relationship since I was 19 and once this breakup began, I, for first time, had to consider what I wanted, liked, and cared about without the usual outside relationship influences steering me off in other directions. At first this was intimidating and then as I slowly started to do whatever I damn-well pleased, it became kind of exciting.

Doing something solely for myself, something that only concerned me, become a very welcomed diversion. Makeup evolved into something fun, fluffy and self-centered; and well, that was exactly what I needed. Therefore, researching and trying new products is like a part-time job. Seriously, I think about this shit, a lot, and I figured that all this thought and research should go somewhere besides my makeup bag and so I'm sharing it with you. Here are two makeup tutorial websites I like. I'm lifting the red curtain here and I feel a bit exposed. So feel free to enjoy them, and for that matter, feel free to enjoy whatever diversions you created for yourself to help you through your particularly difficult time, without shame.

So Dear Followers of my humble blog, what did you do to help you through your breakup, or tough time in your life? Volunteer? Travel? Blog? Or something else not-so-wholesome? I'd love to know, because I know I'm not alone.

P.S. Just tried out Dior's DiorShow mascara (thanks for letting me borrow it, Mom!) and it's wonderful; no clumps, has a reputation for lasting a whole six months without ever getting dried out, and it's perfumed so it makes your face smell nice. Now I ask you this, how can you not feel good when your eyelashes are perfumed?


  1. i love this post.
    i've watched makeup tutorials before on youtube:)
    i really like your blog, you are an awesome writer :)xoxo

  2. Thank you so much for reading!! I my favorite is Fashion Face tv, it's totally my happy place. Thanks again for the encouragement. :)

  3. I've totally watched youtube tutorials! I'm going to check out the links you gave too. I've always wanted to do some kind of professional makeup course - not to be professional, but just because I find it so interesting. I just wish I had more opportunities to do fun makeup but I find in London anything more than mascara to work and I get the worst panda eyes... Still, this is a great diversion/hobby - and in my case one of the things I can do single I couldn't do with my ex. "Why is it taking you so long to get ready?"...

  4. my breakup obsession is (as you know) my motorcycle. i couldnt agree with you more about the channeling of energy. i hate to refer to the whole "phoenix rising" metaphor, but there is something powerful about an obsession forged out of the emotionaly fiery ruins of a love. its pretty awesome. i just wish our hobbies werent so expensive :)


  5. Thanks, heathermikael. :) I love it, " obsession forged out of the emotionally fiery ruins of a love." I'm so inspired by your obsession, motorcycles, and your 3 month trip touring South America on your bike. I cant wait to hear all about it on your blog. I'm planning to take my first motorcycle lessons in the spring and I hope to do you proud!

  6. Hey, "Rules." I want to take a course on doing makeup too, how funny that we both want to do that. Wouldn’t it be such a blast? I seriously think it’s fascinating stuff. Oh and I have a cure for the panda eyes, lining your waterline in a brown pencil. I never knew what a waterline was until a few weeks ago. Check out this post on doing it. Seriously it changes peoples lives. Love it.



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