I am traveling in Europe at present, and as always, looking at all the newspapers and magazines I can get my hands on. I really had to laugh when I read the beauty feature in a recent Sunday supplement. Are you aware that if you continue to incorporate lip gloss into your beauty program, you will be looked upon as a cheap and "ready to go"? I imagine that "ready to go" means be instantly available for sex with men. How lurid-- who would want to look like that? Poor Marilyn Monroe got dragged into the picture as usual. The Puritanical, not to be named author of the article could not resist making the comparison between Andy Warhol's iconic Marilyn series and slutty over glossed lips. Well, I was in the right place at the right time as I was reading this, in bed (properly perusing the newspaper), with one of the Warhol Marilyn polymer paint and silkscreen ink images on the wall behind me. I had a chance to really look at the Marilyn portrait, and I am here to say there is absolutely nothing lip glossed about her. Her mouth is a dull neon gaping wound, a sad analogy for a vagina. I wish these unsophisticated beauty writers would take a better look before jumping to incorrect conclusions. What the beauty writer was attempting to sell is matte red lips, very similar actually to the lips Warhol created for his Marilyn series.

Matte lips are a new beauty statement, but without gloss, most of us will end up with chapped lips. Chapped, dry lips are not the beauty statement many are willing to make. Red lipstick bleeds on the mouth, so beware. I will to continue moisturizing my lips this winter, and suggest to readers to ignore any paranoia about looking "ready to go" and opt for comfort rather than the hassle of not really modern red lipstick.

On another note, I recently threw away a well-known mascara famed for making lashes thick and black. I have rediscovered Shu Uemura's wonderful and delicate waterproof black mascara and I am sticking with it. I have had enough of clumpy eyelashes and black makeup under my eyes to last a lifetime. Adding dry, red lips to the already out of control beauty equation is too much. I am saying no to makeup that does nothing to improve a woman's appearance or level of personal comfort. Feeling good about oneself is the best personal beauty statement anyone can make. Forget some of the new extreme trends if they do not make you feel your best. Winter will be a much lovelier experience this way.

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