Grandma gets ready with me, talks beauty

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Grandma gets ready with me, talks beauty

Annabelle Ady, Staff Writer

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“Ask me more questions, I love this!” My grandma would prompt me several times over the course of our hour and a half video call interview. She would often times interrupt herself mid-sentence to repeat this joyous exclamation, and she would even do it to me mid-question.

My grandma and I were getting ready for our day together over the phone because she lives about six hours away. We are both very busy women, so this has been something we have done a couple of times. It’s our way to talk to each other about our days.

I did my makeup while she got dressed, did her hair, washed her face and drank coffee, all while I asked her questions. When the video chat began, she saw I was already dressed and joked that I was already ahead of her and it wasn’t fair that I had a head start. Midway through the interview she brushed her teeth with an electric toothbrush and tried talking through the noise, she’s a riot!

In my grandma’s word, she has never been a “trend person,” so I asked her about her fashion icons and she immediately said, “Grandma June, my mom, Oh. My. god. Oh Jesus, she was a bombshell. My mom was extremely dressed up, like she just walked out of a fashion magazine or she looked like she was outside with a pick ax, balls to wall working outside. There was no in between, she was just “Wow.” she also listed Greta Garbo, Melania Trump and Faye Dunaway, as her icons for their timeless beauty. She described the many types of fashion trends she witnessed while growing up and multiple times over the interview she brought up the 50s fashion, “I love the glamour day of Ginger Rodgers, the 50s dress was so classic, so classy, it takes so little to look so good, and if you do it right and stay basic,” she enthusiastically listed what else she loved about the 50s style.

As a kid she said she didn’t grow up with a lot of money but her mom, my great grandma, still sent her to modeling school. “I loved fashion, I wanted to be a model when I grew up, I wanted to be a model so badly, but I never had the money for it,” she said. She did some modeling for a few years in Boise, but it never went further. She participated in a few competitions but only ever won second place, which to her wasn’t enough so she gave up that dream. “Honey, my modeling days are pretty much over,” she said matter of factly, as she continued to get ready.

“Babe, I just don’t do my makeup anymore, now it just takes me 15 minutes to get ready,” my grandma said while I was doing my eye makeup. My beauty routine takes about 45 minutes. In junior high and high school I went natural, like my grandma does now, but my best friends have finally rubbed off on me, so I started practicing doing makeup, now I love it.

My grandma described her junior high school days, “I started wearing makeup in junior high school, gosh when was it? I think it was in 7th grade. I started noticing the other girls wearing it. And when I started wearing foundation in junior high it would take me forever to get it smeared around right, if you tried to smush it around better with water it would become a big crisis.” She said her family would complain about her hogging the bathroom, so her dad bought her a mirror for her room. My family also experienced this problem with me, and now my boyfriend does too. I do my makeup in the living room now and not the bathroom.

My favorite part of our chat was when she told me about how she would do her makeup at school:
“I would wait to put my eye makeup on until after I got to school because there was a gal I’d put my eye makeup on with in the girl’s bathroom, that’s where I learned about eyeshadow and stuff. She would wear heavy duty black eyeliner on her eyes and it was so cool to watch her put it on, but I never put it on that heavy. Then we would roll up our skirts to make them mini size and if we got called to the office, we would unroll them on the way down, so we wouldn’t get into too much dutch.”

I used to wear heavy eyeliner in middle school as well, but unlike my grandma, I’d always do it at school and I also never followed the dress code either, but I didn’t try to hide it.

She described a trend inspired by Twiggy, which little does my grandma know, is actually still a trend: white lipstick. “Twiggy wore white lipstick, I know it’s so weird, white lipstick doesn’t look good with braces let me tell you, but I of course at the time didn’t care because I was going to be like Twiggy,” she said in a nostalgic voice. She continued naming brands and types of makeup and we compared what I was putting on with what she had as a teenager. My grandma talked more about the many makeup brands that were popular when she was growing up and then we both had to go.

“You look gorgeous, honey, I hope you have a great powerful day. Go kick some ass. It’s Monday, honey! I love you!” and as usual she waited for me to hang up first, and then we both went on with our busy days.

As a society, we are so caught up in what’s trendy and cool that we forget about the people around us and what they grew up around. Learning about my grandma’s childhood and beauty routines helped me bond with her in a different way than I had before; it was fun getting ready with her over video chat and we both were able to be ready by the time my classes began, although I was late (dang college parking!).

I highly recommend taking a moment out of your day and asking your loved ones who you don’t see often to get ready with you, especially if they’re long distance, and ask them anything. Appreciate those around you, you don’t know when the last time you’ll see or talk to them again will be, all it takes is a simple text or phone call to make their day.

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Grandma gets ready with me, talks beauty