Friday, April 24, 2020

Female Life In A Pandemic

The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted everyone's normal life. It's forcing changes in how we live. Studying human behavior before the pandemic and now, I'm curious (and fascinated) by what's being revealed about female life. You can help me deepen that understanding by describing your life.

Psychological aspects of female life are unknown to men who simply don't have the same experiences which form them. Two areas of note are clothing and grooming.

Clothing and grooming are of much greater importance to most women than men. Most women make careful choices what to wear and are conscious of their attire. The same with grooming: e.g., hair; make-up; etc.

The pandemic has changed these habits. People staying home aren't getting dressed up as often (if at all) and sales of deodorant, breath mints, etc. are down. I'm seeing articles like "How Often Do You Need To Wash The Sweats You're Living In" and "How To Trim Your Bangs."

What's being revealed by the changes to your lifestyle? Are you concerned about your hair? Do you dress up in nice clothes when you're staying home? Do you wear make-up at home?

The choices we make aren't merely practical, they reflect our psyche. Often we choose impractical options because they make us feel better, which is something happening solely in our heads. Worthy of respect but without a foundation of practicality.

This morning an off-hand comment by my friend Sheila on her blog caught my eye. She "found over the years when I've been feeling blue or needed a lift: putting on make-up makes me feel better." Interesting... So make-up isn't simply for improving one's appearance in public, it has a private function. It can affect how we feel about ourselves, even in private.

Honestly, I get this. Because of my particular circumstances (being unable to easily present as female in public), I perform many female rituals and activities at home, in private, with no audience. There is no practical justification for these; I do them just to feel good. More natural, more in touch with myself.

How about you? During isolation at home, do you occasionally put on real clothes? Or make-up? Or fix your hair? Why?



18 comments:

  1. While we are sheltered in place my day starts with a little work on the laptop and then a walk outside for about an hour. After a bite to eat I shower and change. Daily I have worn a dress or skirt, hose, heels, bra and forms. Only on occasion have I applied a little makeup and have not had occasion to put on a wig. Going without or light on the makeup I can quickly change to guy mode if I need to go out for an errand or takeout. Most days we have been cooking up a storm. I know for me a dress, hose and heels makes dealing with the pandemic tolerable.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I do still get dressed and do my hair and makeup each day and I think for me it's not just something that makes me feel better, it's a signal to my body that I'm in "work mode" and not "lounge mode" and it makes me more productive. It might be a psychological thing but it works for me!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I get that. I can't get serious work done at home in my pajamas; I need to mentally shift gears and getting dressed accomplishes that. Thanks for the insight, pal.

      Delete
  3. Putting on make-up actually releases dopamine - it's biology! We make ourselves feel better by practicing self-care. Thank you so much for the shout-out, Ally. :)

    I take a day off from make-up every so often (and I usually remove it when I get home from work). It's a signal (wearing it) that I'm putting my best foot forward, girding my loins, putting on my armour.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I do think the Rituals we perform are complex. With Wardrobe, Make-Up and Hair I've never been one to spend a lot of time with it... Hippie Mentality I guess? That's why I prefer my Dreadlocks, no real maintenance except keep 'em clean and separated. However, during Pandemic I found that Wardrobe was practically obsolete a concept/ritual for me and fell by the wayside almost immediately, If I wasn't still raising a Grandchild, clothing might even be optional... well, except for those Rare Death Runs for essentials... since just the Mask and Gloves might be extreme?! *LOL*

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Interesting. Thanks. I've heard many women say that after the pandemic is over, they're not sure if they'll ever put on a bra again. :)

      Delete
    2. Well, my Bra-less Days in Public ended during my Youthful Hippie days as I wouldn't do that to the General Public now... after all, you can't un-see what ya seen! *Winks*

      Delete
  5. I've definitely forgone 90% of my very basic routines in lockdown. Putting on jeans or a bra feels foreign when i do inevitably go out.

    Prior to the virus, I have house clothes and out clothes. I change immediately when I come home regardless. It's always been a method of keeping my day to day clothing in the best shape.

    Now it is a matter of comfort.

    However, I have not given up my skincare routine. I have acquired two new face washes (one ordered, one gifted out of my stepmom's boxycharm subscription box) and two different gel/clay face masks (same as the washes). I have 3 separate acne gels depending on what sort of break out I'm having and whether my skin is being stubborn. Diffiren is by far the winner.
    Also no matter how clean, cloth or surgical, air masks continue to add to my break outs. Anything touching my face irritates my skin.

    So while I don't really wear make up, I do enjoy the practice of taking care of my skin. Also having a bath or shower. People forgoing those lose me!

    I do really miss my shoes! I was working on growing my hair out anyway.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Fascinating. Thank you for sharing. I learn things from you I never expected to. Whee!

    ReplyDelete
  7. I'm trying to keep up as many routines as possible, and that certainly includes dressing up an putting on make-up even for a day at home. I wouldn't feel myself otherwise, and that would be the beginning of a downward spiral. The only thing I can't control is my hair. As it's short, it needs regular professional attention. I'm lucky in that I had a cut and colour the week before we went into lockdown, but it's getting out of shape again. I've been experimenting with hair bands and scarves, but it's not ideal. xxx

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That makes sense. Thanks for the info, pal.

      Delete
  8. First off, what a splendid dress (top?) that you're wearing in this photo, Ally. It's my style to a tee! :)

    For me personally, my day-to-day routine is little changed thus far while in lockdown, so on the days when (as per usual) my health permits, I do put on makeup, dress up to a degree and so forth. For me personally, doing so has a been a way for me to visually communicate both to myself and the world at large, for a good many years now, that it's still possible for me to physically do things that elevate my look (and in the process, my mood).

    Makeup and glamour in general have always resonated with me. I see them (and fashion) as meaningful personal artistic expressions and love to both experiment and delight in TNT favourites alike. One perk to putting on a face (et al) simply for one's enjoyment at home is that you can really cut loose on the experimentation front and try out new looks, hone your skills, etc and then put those that you desire to practice outside of your own front door.

    Wishing you a safe, positive last weekend of April,
    Autumn Zenith 🎃 Witchcrafted Life

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Your approach resonates in me: I do much of the same for the same reason. Thanks!

      Delete
  9. I love dressing up!! I've been loving wearing pretty outfits and dresses at home- for one thing, because I am not having to rush off to school, use public transport, cycle or walk lots or having the stress of children, I am not having any sweat issues so it's been great not worrying about sweating lots in nice items! (sorry, disgusting to say but true!)
    I've enjoyed wearing pretty dresses and I even IRONED the other day (which I don't do usually!)

    ReplyDelete
  10. I manage to change out of pajamas into sweatpants and occasionally blow dry my hair, but that's about it...no makeup. I have so much of it though, I should make an effort to try to make a dent!

    ReplyDelete