Sometimes, I accompany my wife to her favorite make-up store. Cosmetics are now a highly competitive, big business. Recently, I have become appalled at the decadent state of ‘modeling.’ Models were once icons of ideal beauty for mere mortals to emulate. Testing the standards of beauty, the movement to use ‘normal’ looking models has taken an ugly turn. And all to sell voluminous brows, or third-eye liner.
Why would anyone ‘normal looking’ spend a fortune on beauty products, in order to emulate and look more like… themselves? And what now passes for the ‘common’ look is more than a little scary. The number of gap toothed models on display make me wonder how much money my parents could have saved on my orthodontia had this fashion become the rage in my youth.
This is the look of normal? A century ago, anyone looking like this would either be locked up in an asylum or had to be part of the English royal family.
Once upon a time, it was thought that a flaw was necessary to be truly beautiful. These days, the stars are either cookie-cutter bland, or the ‘flaw’ has become the whole show. Do today’s young women really want to look like refugees from an episode of “The Walking Dead”? Some of these models make Grace Jones look positively nubile.
Speaking of femininity, a counter movement is growing for men. Am I the only one who thinks male models have become just a tad too self-consciously perfect? The line has been crossed where the tweezed, plucked, waxed and chrome-plated look currently popular, makes the wax figures from Madame Tussauds look ruggedly authentic. All that well-oiled sullenness just begs to be hit with a banana crème pie.
Who is promoting these new standards of beauty? And would someone please clean the Vaseline off their glasses?
Years ago, new to Hollywood, I was working sets for a commercial production company, hungry for a ‘break’. The location manager asked me would I be interested in doing modeling. I was intrigued.
He suggested I go in for a test. He thought I had ‘a look, a certain quality.’ A talent scout he knew, was looking for someone with that… je ne sais quoi. He gave me the card of his photographer friend and I called for an appointment.
Wow. Mere months in the city and I had been discovered! I couldn’t wait to tell my wife. She cynically thought my getting a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, might be premature.
I told her “Mine is the face that will launch a thousand shipments of what people buy after turning a page in a glossy magazine and seeing my face. Liquor.”
I went to my appointment for the test photo-shoot with eager anticipation. There was none of the ‘metoo’ stuff you may have heard about. The photographer looked at me, pointed and told me to stand by a bicycle parked on the highly-lit set.
I was no fool. I knew better than to ask him what my motivation was.
I did my best to act like it was my bicycle.
He snapped a few shots and told me I could go. That was it. No contracts were forthcoming. No requests for autographs. What a disappointment!
You may be thinking, ‘Well, maybe they couldn’t see the bicycle.’ That wasn’t it. Nor the absence of inflatable abs. Ignorance of my need to sneer wasn’t it either.
However, I do think I know what harpooned my becoming tomorrow’s over-night sensation, today.
I’m sure you haven’t noticed, but I have a slight bow in my legs, which I’ve been told, if I stand in a certain way, on a clear day you can see Catalina Island. My Mom told me, when she was pregnant with me, she got scared by a horse.
But maybe now, with the move away from the ultra-beautiful, I could still make my big break into modeling. Now, where did I leave my tweezers?