NyashaMayne | Beauty
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Being a woman is a pricey investment, and even more so than the average guy. But, I'm not here to talk about them, so we will not be comparing. The price of beauty is quite astronomical if you break down the cost of looking good. Each part of the anatomy has its own price tag, whether it be hair (all body hair), face, nails ... You name it! But it's all circumstantial.

Cleansing the body; cleansing the soul. Closing one chapter. Time for a fresh start.

This month, I spent an afternoon in a sanctuary of peace and tranquility - peace of the mind; peace of the body; peace of the soul. All the while, nurturing the heart.

The Miraj Hammam Spa  is a place of cleansing and healing for both body and soul. While deep in thought; past, present and envisioning the future, I bared my all within the walls of this treasure whose name encompasses the definition of the silent doctor; Hammam. As I lay on the slab – naked - I received the most invigorating scrub (which I swear is A MUST for both men and women) that left my skin glowing and soft. While laying there, I retreated into my thoughts and reflected on the current year that is coming to a close. 

These days, it's so rare for women to go outside without so much as a lick of make-up.Yet, I advocate it! Don't get me wrong, I can beat my face up good, and I have spent a good amount of coin on my make-up products; but sometimes, some moisturizer and some Vaseline is all I want and prefer. No powder; no anything. Blank canvas. I know and have read numerous articles about make-up and what it means to women when they wear make-up and I completely agree with all the opinions that were shared such as: it makes them feel empowered; it makes them feel beautiful; and lastly, it makes them feel confident in who they are. Beauty standards and the pressures of society. Instead of loving and embracing out natural born beauty, J.Cole had it right on his track Crooked Smile about just how far we women go for validation:

Love yourself, girl, or nobody will

Oh, you a woman? I don't know how you deal

With all the pressure to look impressive and go out in heels

I feel for you

Killing yourself to find a man that'll kill for you

You wake up, put makeup on

Stare in the mirror but its clear that you can’t face what’s wrong

No need to fix what God already put his paint brush on

Your roommate yelling, "Why you gotta take so long?"

What it's like to have a crooked smile

This crooked smile

Black is beautiful. And no one can tell me any different. When I was growing up, I never saw race as a differentiating factor between me and the girl I sat next to in class. We were never taught that we were different, and as a result, I never really fully understood the cultural barriers until I started high school in a new country. My siblings and I were bullied, our house was egged and kids our age followed us in hordes as we walked home from school. Venturing out without a grown-up was never something we did because we were scared of being on the receiving end of such hatred. We were kids ourselves and we didn't understand why they weren't nice to us. We were new to the country that we would later call "home" for over six years; but while we didn't know anything outside of what we had been taught back home in Zimbabwe; we learned fast. Being exposed to racism showed us that the life we had grown up watching on our satellite dishes (cable), and in the movies were just all part of a fantasy that so many longed for, but would never see or experience because of hatred and negativity. Life was tough for us, but as we grew and learned, we were able to meet people who didn't ask if we "lived in huts" or had "lions for pets" because we were black and had gotten off a plane from Africa to try our luck at "the dream". My favourite to date though is, "Why is your English so good?" LOL. That one though is a doozy, but I can't help but smile and answer with the best manners I was taught from a very young age. Ignorance can be bliss, but in this day and age, in a world where a child under the age of ten (10) owns a cellphone...come one now! There is no room for such silliness! Growing up in Scotland and Canada has given me the chance to witness so many different cultures interact on a daily. And while life has been an amazing roller-coaster, it has also been an eye-opening opportunity because despite how great some moments can be, being witness to some of the heinous crimes involving black people is maddening and hurtful. While death, drugs and crime riddles the lives of many black men and women, sometimes it is hard to showcase the good that isn't a stereotype of what being "black" is as defined by society.