You know the girl. You’ve seen her. You might work with her. Maybe you work for her. It doesn’t matter. You know her. She doesn’t crack under pressure. She maintains composure even in the most stressful of scenarios. When someone is trying their best to make that girl look bad, she is so skilled at manoeuvring through the stream of other people’s bullshit, that she manages to come out on top. She’s a winner.
That girl, somehow, between taking on the whole world (and winning), seems to find the time to be perfectly manicured. Always. She is always well-presented. There are no cracks. Admit it. You’ve looked. They’re not there! I have spent my whole adult life successfully failing at nurturing a routine of general maintenance. I just can’t do it. BUT. I was starting a new job. This was my opportunity. I could reinvent myself. I can see it now…Tamara: That Girl.
How hard could it be? I just have to reserve one night a week, maybe two and I can preen, maintain, paint, clip, file, polish and hey presto! Plus, I had a whole day off before starting my new job. No time like the present right?!
You will be delighted to read that I am now going to unleash my recipe for reinvention with you. At the end of my day off I would be unrecognisably transformed into…you got it…That. Fucking. Girl. YASSS!
1st – Gotta paint those nails. White on the toes (this is going to look GORGE with my fake tan…) and Louboutin red on the chewed talons. Yes, they are short and cracked now, but this new lifestyle is going to see my nails growing so long and strong.
I waited exactly 1.5 hours but the 4 layers that I had applied on my fingers (gotta get that “gel” look…) was still tacky. At this stage I was crawling the walls. Bath is a reasonable next step.
2nd – Into the bath I pour myself. Indulgent as fuck. So good. My toenails look totes amaze. Shit…a little chip off a finger…no biggy. I still have my training wheels on. The awesomeness doesn’t arrive all at once. A hair mask and face mask are going to be an important next step.
3rd – Hair mask is on. I have applied a healthy dose of Wellaplex, because my bleached hair has broken at the root again….hmmm…That’s another thing I am going to have to work on. That girl doesn’t have broken, bleached hair. (immediately minus 5 That Girl points) For face mask, I am using Lush’s Rosey Cheeks clay mask…right out the fridge (automatically re-awarding 5 T.G. points for the preparedness…) I relax…
…I can’t relax. I am a millennial and my attention span is shot from years of invigorating, intrusive entertainment. Instead I post on Instagram about how relaxed I am. #metime
4th – It’s time to shave my legs and scrub off my old tan to prepare for the most perfectly-applied tan conceivable. I use a deep, lathery shaving foam and scrub my legs with an exfoliating glove.
Fuck. The glove has completely ravaged my perfect-manicured nails. Right. Well…I will have to redo that. The bath is now ruined as my that girl fantasy crumbles. I sink back into the bath water, rinsing the hair mask and the face mask. “This is still salvageable…you got this”.
5th – Hair in a towel I start to apply the flawless fake tan to my legs.
Double Fuck. The luscious, lathery shaving foam didn’t rinse properly and is re-lathering with the freshly-applied tan. Fuck. My nails are wrecked and now my tan is turning into a beige, disaster-paste.
6th – Back into the shower to rinse off my pasty shame. Right. Well. As I said, I am still learning how to execute this preening but surely my hair will be my saviour.
7th – Out of the shower my damp hair tumbles from the towel, smelling wonderful from the mask. I start to dry it but in my rush to get out of the bath a kind of hair / clay face mask combo had formed in my already-wrecked hair. Again. A magical, unique, fuck-up paste had formed and I was left standing in front of my mirror. All the class and style of Worzel Gummage without any of the retro appeal.
Oh My God Fuck. Back into the shower I go to rewash my shame from head to toe. Nails ruined. Tan gone. Hair mask rewashed out. Face mask dissolved.
3 hours later, after many layers of all sorts of lotions and potions I was pretty much in the exact same state as when I started.
Surrender! I admit defeat! This is not happening. Time to put back on the comfies, pour myself a cuppa and have an oul reality check…who the hell is that girl anyway?! And why is she making me feel shit about myself?!
This whole thing was my stark reminder to me that “That Girl” doesn’t really exist. She sits in my imagination and my self-saboteur takes her out every so often and uses her as a stick to hit me with.
Props to that girl. I can’t do what she does. But I can do this girl and I’m pretty happy with her. Tammy. Tamara. Tim Tam. Whatever. I can only be me…shitty tan, unpolished nails, questionable hair and all, but she’s the only person I have any experience being so I nail it. Every time…