That is all I can say. I woke up one morning and discovered this pair of what I can only describe as "vertical tan lines" between my eyebrows. They had been wrinkles, but now they were wrinkles with character. Character I was not interested in flaunting on my forehead.
My wrinkles had tan lines.
"Oh, the elevens," my friends all nodded solemnly when I got uncomfortably close and jabbed a finger at my forehead in indignation. "Yeah, I got those taken care of."
I beg your pardon?
The Elevens? My forehead tan lines have a name?
That is a sure sign that I needed to have them removed. They are becoming their own entity for fucks sake. Next they'll have a social security number and a zip code. But how could this have happened? Why did it have to come to this? What could I do about it? And most importantly: how much were these little bastards gonna cost me?
The thing that pisses me off about this more than anything is the amount of money I spend on moisturizer with SPF in order to keep wrinkles at bay. I have abandoned all of my "not tested on animals" politically and morally upstanding ideals to find a moisturizer that kept those lab animals WRINKLE FREE dammit. I want to know it works. I WANT PROOF.
I started buying the "good stuff" in the fancy jars a few years ago when I finally came to the conclusion that having to take not one but TWO Xanax to have a facial was not normal. I think my esthetician was relieved when I decided to stop trying to be "the girl who gets facials" - I am, by all accounts, not a fan. I think they are gross, and the closest thing to waterboarding that I have ever experienced. And no, I am not being overly-dramatic.
I do not like people squeezing my zits and examining my wrinkles through super-magnification and tsk tsking about my pores. I do not like having steam blown up my nostrils, things covering my eyes, and goopy cream all over my nose and upper lip so that I feel like I am suffocating. I do not like to lie flat on my back for an hour. I do not like having little bits of cream stuck around my hairline. I do not like wearing those stupid towel wraps. Aromatherapy gives me a headache and I don't want to be greasy or have people breathing close to my face. And I hate the fucking quiet music they play. Why in the love of all that is holy can I not have Pearl Jam playing during my facial? I wish I liked facials. I really do. I love spas - Just ask Tammy. So why can't I relax and enjoy a facial like every other woman on the planet? It's a mystery.
In an effort to avoid facials I try to take good care of my skin at home, with the super crazy moisturizer that should leave me WRINKLE FREE, a blemish extractor for emergencies of the porous kind, and a compact magnifying mirror, just like the good lord intended. I have a cleanser and an eye cream and I use them both every single day. I wear enormous hats.
With all of that, how is it that I have these THINGS on my forehead that make me look so tired, angry, and.....I'm just gonna come right out and say it: old.
I can handle saggy boobs (breastfeeding!) and gray hair (Premature! Runs in the family!) But there is no way to talk myself around the wrinkles. There they are. Right in the middle of my face. So I did what women all over the world are doing. I made an appointment and I tackled this problem head-on. Like a car crash.
I liked my doctor - she understood when I said I still wanted a little action. Her nurse estimated that they were going to use 12 ampules, but the doctor only used 8. And a half. I walked out of there feeling a little tingly. My forehead felt odd and slightly itchy, and I could still wrinkle my brow - a little too much, actually.
A few days later I called back. "I still have wrinkles. I really don't want wrinkles. Can we get rid of the wrinkles?" I didn't mind being able to make wrinkles and wriggle my eyebrows around - that was fine. But I didn't want to be sitting on the couch looking angry when I was just reading the Anthropologie catalog. That shit is my happy place. I want to look happy. The receptionist reassured me it could take 2 weeks to see the full effect, and promised to call and check in with me. I reluctantly hung up, and then felt instantly embarrassed at my vanity and impatience. Did I really just have to be told to chill out and wait for the toxins I shot into my face to settle in?
Yes, yes I did. I am that girl. Joan Rivers and Kenny Rodgers better watch their ass.
"Next time you are going to try bee venom therapy" Sarah informed me. I informed her that I was not interested in having bees sting my forehead but thank you anyway. That's just crazy talk. Because shooting botulism between my eyes is totally rational.
I was impatient, but I am also cheap - if I could avoid paying for another round I was happy to do so. I didn't want my face to be frozen. I didn't want people to take one look at me and say "Oh, Botox. How sad. Why do doctors do that to women?" I wanted subtlety. I wanted to be the only one who could tell. I don't know why I care, since I have told everyone I had it done and handed out my doctor's name like I'm her publicist. But still. I didn't want it to be obvious. So I agreed to give it some time - and I'm glad I did.
The bottom line (no pun intended) is, I waited two weeks after the treatment, or procedure, or whatever I am supposed to call it, and I can honestly say I am pleased with the results. It cost less than $100, and it really made a huge difference. I don't look tired and angry - unless I am actually tired and/or angry. I can move my face, I can move my eyebrows, and I can make it very clear to everyone around me when shit is about to get serious.
"Who ate my Lucky Charms?"
And best of all, I went out and got the cutest little pixie bangs cut. I've got nothing to hide.