Three Ways I Choose Not to Be a Lady

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Most straight women do certain things to show the world that they are, well, straight women. Here are three of those things that I choose not to do:

1. I don’t wear makeup. I used to as a teen, probably without much skill. Over the last decade, I’ve experimented with mineral makeup, but it makes my face itch. And honestly, if anyone’s important to me, they’d better like my skin the way it is.

2. I keep my hair short. Again, since high school. I have a nice neck and shoulders and like to show them off. Anyway, long hair is a pain. And clogs the drain.

3. I don’t have pierced ears. It’s a tradition in my family–my mom and her mom never pierced theirs. Also, now that I’m almost 40, it’s fallen into the category of “probably not gonna do that unless on a dare.”

It’s not that I scorn these behaviors, or think I’m superior to women who do them. If having long hair and wearing lipstick makes another woman feel more confident and attractive and professional, that’s awesome and she should go for it.

It’s more that I have a finite amount of energy and attention (not to mention money), and I’d like to spend it elsewhere.

Is all this confusing to the guys I meet? So far, no one seems to be unduly horrified by my lack of feminine signifiers. I do wear skirts and clothes that show my physique, so probably even the most clueless gentlemen tumble to the fact that I’m a girl.

I have moments of fear, though. What if the masculine objectifying gaze of some hot prospect passes right over me, because, no mascara? Some guys on Match specifically say they’re looking for long-haired women. Oh well, I can pass them on to my girlfriends.

Weird to be still thinking about these matters, at the magical age of 39. I guess I could always do the chick version of a midlife crisis: get multiple piercings, raid the makeup counter, and get extensions. But who has the time or the cash?

The man of my dreams will see the real me beneath the–well, I guess he won’t have to look beneath anything to see the real me. I guess that’s the point.

Thank goodness I don’t work in a Devil Wears Prada type of environment, where I’d have to adorn and polish myself more aggressively.

What about you, readers? What do you do–or not do–to show the world what flavor of human you are?