Everyone posts on Instagram throughout the school year saying things like "missing summer omg," or with summertime music quotes attached to photos of tanned bikini bodies and tropical drinks. However, while we all love many elements about summer in the United States, such as vacation, freedom from studies, and being able to take a break from tanning memberships, there are ugly sides to summer we less than care to admit to having experience with. As a female, I can attest to the fact that I spend far too much time and money on my beauty routine, because I not only think it's fun to try new things, but more importantly, because I genuinely feel good all dolled up as well -- even if it's just for myself.
But come summertime, I feel faced with skyscraper-tall hurdles to overcome in order to achieve the same self-satisfaction with my beauty routine. Harder and harder it gets to feel the same "first things first, I'm the realest" vibe everyone feels when all dolled up, and summer is completely to blame for our ugly truths.
I've heard it all, from "ladies don't sweat, they glow," to "sweat keeps you cooled off in the summer," but I still stay firm in my beliefs: I really hate sweating, and if I'm sweating, it means it's hot as hell itself - so no, I'm not "cooled off". The sweat has probably removed all of the hard work I put into my makeup, so not only am I not glowing (because my highlighter is now on the neckline of my dress, so it's no, it's not glow), but I feel like a soaking wet hog, even though I showered an hour ago. Excuse me while I go take paper towels in the bathroom and blot the armpits of this little sky blue number, before it turns a nice shade navy. Sweat is sweat, and it's not sexy or pretty; it's as ugly and as smelly on me as it is on anyone else.
As if the concept of razor burn that causes stinging and red bumps when you don't use enough shaving cream wasn't bad enough, the huge welts covering my legs, butt, feet, arms, and even face for several weeks with a itching sensation of a thousand burning suns during summertime is far worse. Those cute summer shorts we all buy to show off our months of hard work in the gym and our fresh tans are completely tainted by unwelcome pests. No matter how much OFF bug spray is used, the satanic beasts somehow find that one centimeter missed. And it doesn't stop there, free with each bite comes a drastic change in behavior where you scratch like a maniac (no matter how many Xs you put in each bite with your nail to try and prevent the urge), the potential hazards of malaria, Zika, West Nile, and other spreadable diseases, and an unsmooth base for your daily makeup indefinitely (as there's no ridding of them), regardless of how many old benzoyl peroxide acne treatments you may have on hand for emergency. This can all be yours every summertime in the great outdoors!
The only thing worse than being as pale as a ghost during the winter from lack of sun, is the pain, splotchiness, fever, and the disgusting snakeskin-like shedding results of achieving too much sun. "I'm just going to lay out without sunscreen for a few minutes to get a base," we say... "I'll be fine, even though I've been badly burnt nearly every single time I've used this method," we say. I may be smiling across the table from you at dinner, and I may appear a tad red to you (most of it is covered by foundation), but I just want to let you know my cheek skin feels like stretching a super small rubber band from our table to the car and back, and I feel like I'm going through menopause at the ripe age of 21, due to the heat radiating from within me. My tan may look fab enough to take my summer "Insta" pics in a week after nighttime regimes of lots of aloe vera, but for right now, I'm on fire and it'd be best if you don't pull a Selena Gomez, and keep your hands to yourself -- unless you're a fan of tears.
Ultimately, summer makes for many amazing memories, pictures, fun, Nicholas Sparks movie settings, and several moments to flaunt the most daring and beloved beauty routines, but there are some downsides, like anything, as well. We will continue to strive to wear sleeveless and go in air conditioned areas to avoid sweat as much as possible, drown ourselves in bug spray to avoid disease and severe lack of comfort, and lather on the sunscreen so we can achieve a nice shade of bronze, rather than lobster, but ultimately, it's easy to see that even "perfect summertime omg," has its ugly truths.