For reasons unbeknownst to me, the shower scene has become an overwhelmingly erotic zone. I will tell you right now, there is nothing sexual about me sitting on my shower floor and straining my neck for optimal back-of-thigh shaving, but whatever. I suppose if your boobs defy gravity, and you’re wearing waterproof makeup, you can make it work for you, which is why porn stars just have a time and a half in their three by three showers.
As for the rest of us, it just doesn’t work. I know you think it does, but that’s just because Hollywood, and your boyfriend’s vivid imagination have romanticized it for you — a hard truth of which I was reminded this weekend.
Set the scene:
I woke up in my special VIP man-friend, but not-at-all boyfriend’s bed. Thirty-six hours had passed since I’d washed my hair — despite the advent of dry shampoo and the sock bun (ultimate game-changers in the battle against hair washing), I could see it in his less-attracted-to-me-than-usual face, that it was time. My hair simply could not wait another day, and I had shit to do — like get my nails done, and spend too much money at my bi-monthly shopping spree. I’d shower at his place. We were at that point and it had been just long enough since I stepped foot in a man shower to remember how hellacious the experience was about to be. And then, he spoke up, voicing the only suggestion would make washing my hair even more dreadful than usual — that he come in there with me.
Unable to quickly retort with a reason why he shouldn’t — after all, I couldn’t explicitly say that I don’t look as good standing up in the light as I do laying down in the dark — I allowed it, and I hated every minute of it.
Showering with another individual is never as sexy as you imagine it. I don’t know how celebrities and models do it, maybe it’s just because they are categorically sexier than I am, but that moment when the water is cascading over your hair, and you’re looking up at him in an instant of natural beauty — that doesn’t exist. When my hair is wet, it is flat and frizzy at the same time. It cozies up right against my head and matts, but the fly-aways find that this is their time to shine. Based on fake-sleeping pictures I’ve purposely taken of myself to see what I look like with my eyes closed, I can say with certainty, that it’s not a good look for me, and my makeup, no matter how thoroughly I think I’ve washed my face, always ends up running down my cheeks in a sort of heroin chic fashion.
Let’s just stop this charade. Let’s stop pretending it’s sexy. Let’s stop pretending it’s fun.
When I get in the shower, it’s to get clean. It’s not to have you lather soap on my hips, while ignoring the fact that my underarms are really what could be using that attention. I don’t want to point out to you that the silky smoothness you’re accustomed to feeling is now replaced by wet stubble, which you can either deal with, or watch me dabble in contortionism to remove. I don’t want to try to have uncomfortable standing up sex. It never works. I’m 5’1”, our babymakers are at totally different altitudes, and between wet bodies, and the 10 pounds I’m trying so desperately to lose, holding me up is seemingly impossible. Nothing is less sexy for either of us than realizing you can’t lift me. I’m over it…the “Hey, pass me the men’s body wash, and please look the other way while I wash my butt”? I’m over it.
After some faux passionate making out, and failed attempts at intercourse, I don’t want to be reminded that washing my hair has practically been rendered null and void, because you insist on using 2-in-1 shampoo and conditioner. It’s not the same as buying shampoo and conditioner. The only thing worse than entering the man shower, is exiting it. Until you’ve had this conversation, you won’t know my pain.
“Where’s your blowdryer?”
“I don’t have one.”
“You don’t have a blowdryer?!?!” I said giving him a dirty look in the mirror. Raccoon eyes, right on cue. How could he smile at me looking like this? “Alright. I can just brush it and braid it.”
“There’s a fan above my stove, but I don’t have a brush either.”
“A fan above your stove? What are you, some kind of cave man? And you don’t have a brush? What about a comb? ANYTHING I can brush my hair with? It already feels gross because you don’t have conditioner, and I smell like old spice. The only place for ‘granola’ in my life is in my yogurt, not in my hair.”
“Oh! How about a fork?”
Somehow, this man, whom I almost considered dating, had really proposed that I ready myself entirely in his kitchen. I rolled my eyes, towel-dried my hair, and explained that using a kitchen utensil as a hair tool only worked for Ariel, who coincidentally is also the only girl who’s ever been able to successfully seduce a man from under water.