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High Maintenance Woman or the All Natural Look?

Updated on May 30, 2018
Karen Hellier profile image

Karen Hellier is a freelance writer and eBay entrepreneur. She lives happily in the mountains of North Georgia with her husband and her dog.

This is what I normally look like in the afternoon, after a day at work.
This is what I normally look like in the afternoon, after a day at work. | Source

To Primp or Not to Primp?

I have often wondered what men like more: The all natural woman, or the high maintenance look? I have never been one to want to wear a lot of makeup. I am too busy with life to want to spend a lot of time in the mirror. And for what anyway? All the makeup washes off or might wear off after a long day, and I would end up looking like my more natural self in 6 - 10 hours depending on the staying power of my make up. So, half of the day, people will see what I look like more naturally. But I would look a bit messy and dragged out because my make up had partially worn off. Unless of course, I were to carry my make up with me and constantly run into the bathroom periodically throughout the day to touch up and redo things. Ugh, seems like another waste of time to me. And I wonder who the women that do spend a lot of time on their make up are trying to look good for? Themselves? Men? Other women?


Makeup can be made to look minimal and natural, way over the top so the look almost clownish ( for years I stayed away from Mary Kay ladies because the ones I knew in my hometown looked scary because they wore so much). Or, they looked so plastered with makeup that I wondered what kind of man would want to get close to them when it looked like they had plaster on their faces. My mom, bless her heart, used to tell me that the best way to apply makeup is to look like you don't have any on. Well, what's the point of that? I think that putting on some minimal makeup that evens out the skin tone, hides dark circles from not enough sleep from being up with a baby or sick child all night, and maybe highlights some specific parts of a woman's face such as eyes or lips that are striking, is a nice touch. I personally don't feel right without makeup because I have kids and they sometimes wear me out, and I really would LIKE to hide those dark circles. Maybe makeup application should be able to help a woman feel on the outside the way she feels on the on the inside? But I do think there's such a thing as too much of a good thing. And I don't want to scare the neighbor's children away!


I know there are many women out there that spend a LOT of money on their fingernails and enjoy the way they look. I don't want to offend any so, please don't take this the wrong way, but I am a born and bred Yankee, and frugal to my core. I would NEVER spend money to have someone else put nail polish on my fingernails. Sometimes I do put clear or a light colored polish on for something special. But mostly my nails are just au naturel because I don't have time to sit around in a nail salon, or in my living room waiting for my nails to dry. And if I am active enough to break a nail, I do not want to be one of those women who cry out in despair, 'Oh, I broke a nail." In the big scheme of things...who cares? It will grow back. That's what fingernails do. Unless of course, they are talking about the fake nails that are put on in the salon. If I had to pay for a fancy nail to be put on, and it broke, and then I had to PAY again to have it fixed, well yes, I might be one of those women who cried oh,'Oh I broke a nail" not because it meant my one fingernail would now look hideous compared to the rest, but because it would mean I would have to go back to the nail salon and spend yet MORE money to have it fixed!!! Yes, I would cry out about that too.


Okay, so this may be my one nod to the not so natural.I am in my early fifties, and I am not ready to be gray yet. I am not totally gray but do have some coming in...near my part, and on the sides. But I am also not ready to spend huge amounts of money to cover it up. I recently won a makeover which included $350 worth of hair care services. They all had to be done on the same day. I skeptically asked the woman who had called to give me the news of my winning what types of hair care services I could possibly get all in one day. She didn't skip a beat and listed off all the different hair services and their costs. Actually, if I had everything they offered, I could spend all $350 in one day! I was amazed that people might actually spend that kind of money all in one trip to the beauty salon. When she asked what I usually have done to my hair, I told her that for years I had been getting it cut every other month ( at Cost Cutters, a hair dressing chain that costs $15.95 per haircut) and every 6 weeks I use a wash out box hair color (Clairol Natural Instincts). I do love Clairol Natural Instincts because it lasts for 24 washes and if I wash my hair every other day, I can just use it every four to six weeks. Plus it comes with an amazing smelling conditioner. If you like coconut scent, you will really like this hair color and conditioner because it leaves your hair smelling so good. I have actually gotten compliments on how great my hair smells the day I use this.

Anyway, she giggled a little bit incredulously on the other end of the line and then proceeded to ask me what I wanted to be done. I told her a wash, cut, dye and blow dry sounded good, which she told me without the free service due to my win would cost me $135!!! Geez, do women really pay this much for these services? And on a regular basis? I could buy my family two weeks worth of groceries for that much money!

When I actually arrived at the hair salon, I was immediately uncomfortable when I saw the way it was so poshly decorated, and the padded lounge chairs that customers sat in. They asked me if I would like something to drink and I agreed to a water...which they brought to me in a wine glass!!! I started to see why they charged so much for hair care services...they needed the money to decorate and buy wine glasses and lounge chairs!!! As the hairdresser started to work on my hair, we chatted, and she commented, with a knowing smile, that she heard I had been using box color to color my hair. It felt as though I was doing something I should have been ashamed off...but I was not! I said I had, and I was comfortable with it because it was not permanent and would wash out of my hair in 4 - 6 weeks time. She proudly told me that the hair color she was using was "permanent" but would only last eight weeks, and then if I wanted to keep it up, I would need to have it re-done every eight weeks. Huh? What's so permanent about that? I gave her a tip ( my only cost of the day) and thanked her but knew I would not be back. I don't have $135 to spend every eight weeks on hair care services when I can instead spend $21.95 plus the same tip.


Here I am really at a loss. I am not a fashion statement, and my two teen aged daughters will attest to that. I wear what feels comfortable, what I think looks good on my body type, and what I can afford. I do not spend money on designer clothes because I don't want to pay more money to have a designer's name on the label of my clothes. Why should a name like Ralph Lauren on a label command more money than a name like LL Bean, or Jacklyn Smith? Sometimes I think the most recent styles look absolutely ridiculous, and I feel sorry for women, especially younger women and teens, who spend money on these things because they are "in fashion" when they actually are pretty funny looking. I don't purchase designer shoes, purses, or other accessories for the same reason. Have you seen some of those pointy designer shoes? No thanks, I will pass on the jester look from the middle ages. And I certainly don't want to look like an elf, Christmas or any other time of the year. Why should I give a famous designer all that extra money when I can buy shoes and purses for much less money that serve the same for my feet and a place to keep my necessities when I am out and about.

In Conclusion:

So, now that I have probably offended half of the people that read this, I am sorry. I am just a natural woman, who likes to look good, be comfortable, and not take a lot of time and lose a lot of life's special moments by spending hours in the mirror, or at the hair salon. I try very hard to have my morning routine take 30 minutes, including shower and makeup. If I only partially dry my hair and let the rest of it dry naturally and curl on its own, I can be ready in 25 minutes. My husband and I can be out the door pretty quickly this way, and since we like to travel, it gives us more time to be together, and see the world around us. I know two women, one who is 18 and one who is 35, who both take TWO hours to get ready to go anywhere. If you want them to go with you anywhere, you have to give them at least 2 hours notice. If not, they refuse to go. They aren't even related. I am wondering if this is normal to take this long?? So, please take the poll below...there's one for women and one for men.

This is the best my fingernails ever look, when I put the time into them.
This is the best my fingernails ever look, when I put the time into them. | Source

Poll For Women

How long does it take you to get ready to go out for the day?

See results

Poll For Men

What look do you prefer in a woman?

See results

© 2012 Karen Hellier


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    • profile image

      Bill 3 years ago

      To Karen Hellier, well the men out there that are rich could afford them.

    • profile image

      Bill 4 years ago

      To Karen Hellier, high maintenance women are usually very selfish and stuck up. And many of them really think that they are God's gift to men.

    • Karen Hellier profile image

      Karen Hellier 4 years ago from Georgia

      That's what I thought as well Bill, but I was just checking it out through this article. It does seem like more men than I thought voted for women who are high maintenance in the poll though. Did you take the poll?

    • profile image

      Bill 4 years ago

      High Maintenance Women are a real turn off for many of us men.

    • Karen Hellier profile image

      Karen Hellier 6 years ago from Georgia


      If I try to add more choices it totally deletes the answers that are already there.

    • Karen Hellier profile image

      Karen Hellier 6 years ago from Georgia

      Sorry about that onegoodwoman...there was an in between choice of wearing some make up. Those are the 3 different types of women I usually observe.

    • onegoodwoman profile image

      onegoodwoman 6 years ago from A small southern town

      Let the masses of the women decide......

      When my work day begins, I am facing frying bacon, steam tables, dish washing machines, ice cold packed snacks, frying oil, hi-temp oven temps............

      We have to work.........our " work " is differently defined........

      Let other ladies look lovely.............I choose NOT to look like a skin fried, drowned, raccoon.

      I would not dare to ask a doctor or Rn, of the meds they are dispensing.......they should not question my knowledge of menus.......

      Let, each of us, be what we are.........without pitting one against the other.

      I, personally, have a problem with your choices of what a woman should be.............

      natural or manicured and pampered.

    • Karen Hellier profile image

      Karen Hellier 6 years ago from Georgia

      Sorry Trevor.I will see if I can fix the poll and add one more choice.

    • profile image

      Trevor 6 years ago

      You don't really give a lot of leeway with the poll, it goes straight from small amount of make up, to LOTS of makeup, I like when my fiancé, Amy, wears some makeup, not lots, but not almost nothing, she plays with it and makes her eyes even more beautiful then they already are (:

      Men, or at least men I know, like women's eyes, and love when they can play them up a little.

    • Karen Hellier profile image

      Karen Hellier 6 years ago from Georgia

      Hi Anonymous...that's a fact on the 2 women. One is in her thirties, wears a TON of make up and curls her hair daily...she doesn't have a perm so it takes a long time to get the "look" she wants. She told me the info herself about how long it takes and not to ask her to go anywhere if she can't have the 2 hours. The other is an 18 year old who also wears a ton of makeup and washes and dries and straightens her hair EVERY day.And I was wondering about how the men feel about it, but so far not many are voting in the poll. the ones that have seem to favor no make up or little make up. I am hoping more men vote so we can have a truer idea of how they feel.

    • profile image

      Anonymous 6 years ago

      You know, a lot of women also don't really know what to do with make-up, or their hair, but it can be a lot fun. I live a healthy lifestyle, I do not drink or smoke, I eat healthy and I go for jogs regularly. But I love fooling around with make-up, it's fun, and it's artistic! If you know what you doing it won't looked like 'plaster' but it will accentuate your natural beauty. It only takes me an entire 20 minutes to do my make-up, I don't know any woman that takes 2 hours, is that an opinion of fact?? I'm also not waisting my life away in the mirror, i have fun memories of playing around with makeup with my mom and friends. On another note, men do like a little make-up, researchers polls have noted;

      I don't think a nice and classic smokey eye ever killed anyone, some men actually like there women looking all dolled up shall I say, when they go out together, they like showing off what they have;

    • Karen Hellier profile image

      Karen Hellier 6 years ago from Georgia


      Thanks for the comment.My husband told me he thought most men would feel that way. He does as well.

    • travel_man1971 profile image

      Ireno Alcala 6 years ago from Bicol, Philippines

      I'll go for more natural look. It's okay for may woman to be fancy when special occasion comes, but I'll stick to her original self. :D

    • Karen Hellier profile image

      Karen Hellier 6 years ago from Georgia

      sunriz and arline,

      Thanks for the comments. Nice of you to recommend natural products sunriz when you can make money on recommendations. And that IS odd about your husband's tastes. You know what they say though..."to your own self be true!" Arline, I had never heard of that website before...thanks for the tip.

    • profile image

      Arline 6 years ago

      I am with you totally on the make up issue but more conflicted on the hair issue. As for skin products, yes, many are toxic and the Environmental Working Group website is a great place to look them all up! ( google Skin deep- EWG - you can select and study any kind of body care product you wish!) I find that, personally, with hair, I have to pay more for a cut that lasts, that I am happy with. The gray issue bothers me and I am afraid to color it myself so I have paid for professional highlights infrequently with someone who does a good job of it, and it IS expensive but I allow myself the luxury and just put it in the budget. I do not want to go to permanent every 8 week color, though. Nails, whether on my hands or feet - yes I have had them done but it is a real treat and not a regular event. I have tried to find less expensive places and to support women in business, when it comes to these things, rather than the priciest salons.

    • profile image

      Sunriz 6 years ago

      I make a living promoting makeup, as a Beauty Advisor at an unnamed pharmacy. I have to recommend products to desparate women...Often, in spite of money I could make for promotions, I will tell them to use gelatin for their nails, cucumbers for ther eyes, mayonnaise for their hair, especially if they are older, and I deem them lower income...I rarely use makeup, myself, but I do, occasionally for special occasions. I tend to be a rogue, for my profession. My husband would actually prefer me to be gray, and hairy under the armpits and on my legs, which is an odd thing, as most men don't like that, being exposed to media women. An interesting concept, for both men and women...Who thinks what?

    • Karen Hellier profile image

      Karen Hellier 6 years ago from Georgia

      Thanks prospectboy. My husband would probably agree with you!

    • prospectboy profile image

      Bradrick H. 6 years ago from Texas

      As a guy, I personally prefer women who have a more natural look. I've never really been a fan of women who cake make-up on their faces, or have all those fancy designs on their finger nails and toenails. I like seeing women in their true form that they were made in. Now a little make-up here is there is ok, but some of these women now go overboard with it. Great hub, you seem to be a smart woman with your frugal way of living. Props to you.

    • Karen Hellier profile image

      Karen Hellier 6 years ago from Georgia

      Yikes, I had no idea. Maybe you can write a hub about that??? I would read it. Good information, and thanks for the comment.

    • TIMETRAVELER2 profile image

      Sondra Rochelle 6 years ago from USA

      I'm with you Karen. Also, if you research makeup, a lot of it is toxic. Many nail polishes, for example, contain formaldehyde. If women really knew what was in their makeup, they might not want to wear so much of it!


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