May 15, 2009

How much are your looks worth?

We know the beauty industry pulls in billions of dollars.  According to the Economist via this latest post @ Sociological Images:

…beauty spending–on make-up, diet and exercise, fragrances, skin care, hair products, and cosmetic surgery–adds up to a $160 billion-a-year worldwide.

But, how often do we personally think about what we spend and the amount of time it takes us to get ready? I’m not considered “high-maintenance” and, even so, I spend a tremendous amount of time and energy on my physical appearance:

I shave my legs, armpits and bikini area, I get my eyebrows waxed, I use body lotion, facial moisturizer and eye cream, toner for my face, facial serum, SPF, get manicures and pedicures, use deodorant, shampoo, conditioner, hair oil and shine, nail polish, mascara, liquid eye liner and eye shadow.

Wow!

It’s sobering to write it out. As I said, it doesn’t take me hours to get ready, I don’t look like a woman that takes hours to get ready, my hair is not perfectly coiffed and groomed, I am not “flawless,” and don’t look like anyone featured in the media.

Sociological Images provides the link to a slide show of women photographed during their monthly beauty routine and calculates the costs associated with it.

How much do you spend each month on diet, exercise, make-up, hair, scents and oils, and/or plastic surgery or various enhancements such as Botox, teeth whitening, photofacials and/or laser treatments? How many products do you have in your bathroom that you haven’t used completely before buying another brand name?