Friday, January 12, 2007

Getting Pampered (and I Don't Mean the Diapers)

“Happiness comes from within. But sometimes it comes with a haircut. And a shampoo.”
- My Friend, after hearing how happy my haircut over break had made me

I am not incapable of washing my own hair. I have two hands, they function well; I have shampoo and conditioner in my bathroom, easily within reach. There’s no reason I should have to pay someone else to wash my hair for me.

And yet, every time I go get a haircut, I get a shampoo also.

The reason for this is simple: Having things done for you is nice. It’s nice to be pampered sometimes. I’m not about to start going to Supercuts every day to have them wash my hair. But at the same time, I’m not going to turn down the opportunity once every few months to lay back, close my eyes, and enjoy the warm water and mini scalp massage. It feels nice. And that relaxing feeling is worth the extra few bucks.

It’s the same reason I like to get spa pedicures. I’m fully capable of painting my own toenails. Mom and I did a “foot spa” treatment in Vegas, where we essentially exfoliated and moisturized our feet to make them smoother. All of this stuff is easy enough to do on my own at home. But sometimes, it’s nice to go to a salon, bring a magazine, and veg out while someone rubs my feet and calves with lotion and gives my toes a bright new color. It feels nice. And that relaxing feeling is worth a couple twenties every few months.

Sure, there’s the issue of quality – maybe hair salons use better shampoos/conditioners than I have at home, and so by going there I get better shine in my hair. And maybe nail salons have better bases and topcoats, so the spa pedicure lasts longer than a home pedicure. But that’s not why I get them. I get them because it’s nice to be pampered sometimes, to relax and let someone else do something nice for you. (We’ll ignore that we’re paying these people do it.)

What isn’t so nice is the fact that all of these people seem to find it an intrinsic part of their jobs to engage you in insipid conversation at the most awkward moments. Right when I have my head back and the water is gushing over my ears, the stylist becomes fascinated to know where I got my shoes. With both hands working madly to scrub off my dance calluses, my nail lady suddenly needs to ask me how my love life is going. How many times have you been to the dentist and had him start asking you long, involved questions while your mouth is gaping open and he’s digging around with something sharp and pointy? There is a time and place for small talk – getting coffee at Starbucks, for example – and a time and place for blessed silence – getting a bikini wax at a nearby salon, for example. The last thing I need is for anyone working between my legs to develop a sudden curiosity to hear all about my involvement in high school sports.

So it’s a trade-off, but all in all, being pampered is a worthwhile experience once in a while. My special treats are salon shampoos and spa pedicures. What are yours?


Day 12 of SaBloBoMo: Prey by Michael Crichton

This is my favorite Crichton novel, which is saying a lot, 'cause I loves me some Michael Crichton. This was one of those stereotypical, can't-put-it-down-to-save-my-life kinds of reads for me. And I remember I kept thinking about how it would make such a great movie, because it was so scary and suspenseful. But then I realized that visually representing a cloud of dust in a way that it will terrify people would actually be pretty terrifying.

The premise of the book is basically an experiment gone wrong. Or rather, gone too far. They invented these tiny organisms that were capable of adaptation and growth. Except - whoops! - they're adapting and growing to become smarter than the humans. And they're becoming vicious. Violent. Hungry for flesh. *shudder* Scary stuff. Highly recommended.


Anonymous said...

The best part of a haircut is the shampoo. If they aren't going to do the whole shampoo scalp massage thing, then the haircut may as well not happen.

Also, for home pedicures - they have a new line out that I think is Sally Hansen and it's lavender scented...a scrub, a mask, a soak, and a lotion. LOVE! It's almost as good as having someone else do it! Seriously.

dancing dragon said...

I have to comment, yes, the mini-scalp massage is just great!

Dallas Blue said...

i love both getting my hair shampooed and getting a pedicure.

additionally, one of my biggest pleasures is taking a book to a restaurant, getting a table by myself, and eating a good meal while I read and get waited upon.

LaLa said...

Ooooh. Pedicures and Facials and getting my hairs done. I ALWAYS get my hair washed, I just have not even considered not having it done.

I hope your hairs are still making your feel fabulous.

Anonymous said...

I must admit I probably don't indulge in this kind of pampering as much as I should. But one year my mom got me a gift certificate to a spa/massage place, and I used it right after finals. I got my own room with a biiiig hot tub, and they give you a fuzzy robe and slippers to walk up to the massage in. It was blissful (awkward, but blissful).

Also I like what Sassy said about taking a good book to a restaurant. I often see people doing this and think it looks very nice, but I've never tried it out myself.

Anonymous said...

I love a massage. I repeat to myself "I'm worth it" as I enjoy and relax.

Caffeinated Librarian said...

Amen sister! Both on the hair washing and the annoying chatter.

I do the book and a dinner out all the time; it's one of the nice parts of being single. Sometimes in Spring/early Fall, I take a half-day from work and spend the afternoon reading at a coffee shop or taking in a matinee (either alone or with a friend, if I can convince anyone to play hooky with me). It's a nice way to change up your schedule and recharge at very little cost.

CC said...

Ditto on massages. Mmmmmmmm.

Lara said...

aimee - agreed. scalp massages are so nice, with the warm water and everything. mmmm... i'll look into the home pedicure stuff - thanks for the suggestion!

dancing dragon - word. and really not expensive, either, which is nice.

sassy - hmmm... i never thought of the book thing. but i kind of like it. maybe i'll start doing that once in a while too.

lala - yeah, see, facials i don't like so much. mostly because i don't like letting people touch my face. like, ever. well, little kids can do it and i don't mind too much. but no adults are allowed near my face. (and yes, i still love the hair!)

tali - wow, your massage thing sounds awesome. i want to go get a massage again sometime. it's been too long. also, like i said above, i hadn't considered the book thing, but i like the idea. i would say we should do it together, but that sort of ruins the individual nature of it. :-P

mom - good mantra. you are soooo worth it. ;)

CL - the movie thing i've done, often at the black-and-white movie theater they have near here. it's always good times. and yeah, the chatter? kills me every time.

CC - "mmmmm" is right. massages are yummy.

Josette said...

Hey, there! The Prey sounds good, i'll read it some time. Thanks for sharing.

By the way, I saw your blog on TT.