I often wonder how much of the tips and tricks I share – and that now remain on the internet forever – will bring about more than a chuckle from the next generation of style followers.
Remember that piece of advice from a 1955 article in Housekeeping Monthly? There were lots of gems contained within on how to be a better housewife and support your man.
This was just one of them:
Prepare yourself. Take 15 minutes to rest so you’ll be refreshed when he arrives.
Touch up your make-up, put a ribbon in your hair and be fresh-looking. He has just been with a lot of work-weary people.
As a 2012 wife, the only ribbons around here get wrapped around a pressie (if I’m feeling fancy) and by the end of the day I’m more about getting the makeup off than freshening it up.
Then this 2012 wife last weekend found herself reaching into the second hand book bin at a convenience store at a tiny beach north of Sydney.
I didn’t have to reach very far because the book that had caught my eye was indeed a large tome of coffee table proportions.
Blazoned across its front under the words, The Great Aussie Beauty Book (by Ursula Hufnagl, in association with Debbie Coffey), was an image of sun-kissed Aussie beauty posing and pouting like she was on the set of Bold and the Beautiful wearing a white one-piece featuring Australian flag-shaped maps of Australia.
Snorts and smirks about maps of Tassie aside, I realised that a $2 investment in this 1984 gem would indeed offer up a nostalgic look at how beauty advice was dished out in the 1980s.
And yes, I feel old when I describe looking back on the ‘80s as nostalgic.
1984: I love wearing haircombs at night but find that halfway through the evening they start to slip out. How can I prevent this?
2012: If you still have haircombs loitering with intent behind the scrunchies in your bathroom cabinet, it’s time for an intervention.
1984: I’m forty-five years old and literally woke up one morning with five more wrinkles. What can I do?
2012: No, grimacing to strengthen your jaw and neck muscles or blowing air into your cheeks so they puff out will not smooth out your lines. Embrace them. They say that you are mature enough to know all the lyrics to Echo Beach.
1984: Brighten your appearance when going out after work by bending over for a few seconds to give your face a pep-up rush of blood.
2012: Go out after work to a dimly lit bar where it looks like you’re walking around with an Instagram filter across your face.
1984: When you’re over thirty, don’t follow every trend that comes along. Styles that look great when you’re young can seem painted when you’re older.
2012: Thank goodness 50 is the new 40 and 40 is the new 30. A pop of bright lippy is the easiest way to look fresh when you’re not.
1984: A beautiful body isn’t complete without firm, healthy breasts. Don’t despair if you were at the end of the line when all the decent sets were handed out!
2012: Despair. I’ll show you despair. It’s realising that no amount of pressing your palms together while flexing your chest muscles will make a razoo if those boosies have fed a baby or three. Get thee to a bra-fitting expert instead and strap them in.
1984: Greasy hair, dowdy clothes, grubby fingernails and body odour are definitely out for the spruced up Bruce of the eighties. Why not give him a bubble bath and lavish him with attention, cleansing his face and shampooing his hair?
2012: Why not? Because the ’80s were not the ’50s. And there’s the little matter sharing the bathroom real estate. I’m not a good sharer.
All food for beauty thought, isn’t it?
What did you inflict on yourself beauty wise in the 1980s that now makes you shudder?
Me? It would have to be the torture that was having my hair streaked.
MORE ARTICLES BY NIKKI PARKINSON
*Nikki Parkinson was never allowed a Barbie doll as a child. Her politically correct mum thought Lego and Tonka trucks were more fitting. Now the Queensland-based blogger advises women what to wear and put on their face for a living. The former journo and magazine editor manages an award-winning blog Styling You – offering real world fashion and beauty advice for busy women. Don’t tell anyone but she’s secretly a closet dag who likes nothing more than relaxing at home with her family… but open a champagne bottle and she can have her heels on and hair done in minutes. You can follow Nikki on Twitter @stylingyou and Facebook.