At home shopping. Wow, sounds sexy. And I sound sarcastic. So it was quite amazing to me that I found myself perched over a bowl of steaming hot water, surrounded by four other women on a Tuesday night, rubbing my chest with goo and saying ‘Well, this is the most attention I’ve had in a while’.
[Sidebar please. That Man is currently in China, and had previously been working 80+ hour weeks. I wish I was exaggerating. So, I'm sure he would have been gazing at my freckly chest with uncontrolled lust had he been something other than Zombie Man, or had he actually seen me upright or in a pose other than Sleeping Tiger for the previous few weeks. If he was that kind of guy.]
Aaaaanway… sorry mum. Let’s move on. I rolled up to this shopping at home party as a sceptic rolls up to a séance. Really, because I wanted to try something different and see what would happen. Plus, a lady I really like asked me at the last minute, and it was a fun excuse to get out of shit o’clock with the kids, and have a giggle, a facial and a glass of wine. My disclaimer was ‘Absolutely, love to. As long as it’s OK if I don’t buy.’ I’m the master of restraint.
The number of goods for sale this particular evening tripped over into the ‘overwhelming’ category, and I was holding fairly comfortably with my intention not to buy, until I realised that the prices really WERE GOOD, and they were products I’d run out of and would be needing to buy on my next supermarket run in any case, except that in many cases I liked these ones better. Things like facial cleanser, sunscreen, very discounted concealer, eyeliner (ooooh in metallic blue!), lipsticks, nail polishes (OK… outside the supermarket category now, but it was like being in a lolly shop! They were between $5 and $10!).
The most enjoyable part of the evening for me was performing an ‘instant facelift’ facial on ourselves while our demonstrator did my friend’s face. I have to admit, ‘beautician’ is not going to be on my list of backup careers if all else fails. I do not have skills.
After dropping some cheese from the cheese platter into my face cleansing water bowl (mmm moisturising?) and dripping most of the stuff up my elbows and onto the table, putting the cleanser on my face and eyes (‘You put it on your eyes? You were only supposed to do your face.’ Oh…) I found myself dabbing around the table like a bat in a cave trying to lay my eyeless hands on something with which to wipe my face. I then scrubbed my face far too hard with the microdermabrasion solution and ended up resembling a beetroot (probably in a beetroot and fetta salad … given the cheese in bowl incident earlier).
I have to admit though, the anti-ageing serums we used on our faces had me sold. Yes. You heard me − I bought stuff. And the next day my skin felt soft and amazing, like I’d just spent $100 having a facial (instead of laughing and chatting and drinking while slapping goo on my face − a novel and extremely pleasant way to ‘facial’ that I’ll be sure to revisit).
I buy these creams and serums for my face anyway, and these prices were much more competitive, Australian owned and benefitting somebody in a way I could see directly. That was enough for me. The proof will be in the pudding (with my face being the pudding). I did buy a few slightly odd bits and pieces though… I’ll blame the car washing mitt on the glass of champagne.
I’ve deliberately not mentioned the brand until the end of my post, because if you’re like me, you have inbuilt biases towards particular brands and home-shopping products. I, for one, would rather take out each of my eyelashes individually than attend another Tupperware party in the next decade. I have nothing particular against plastic, and I do use it. Hello??? Credit cards?? It’s just… it’s empty boxes made of plastic. Jewellery? I’m there. Underwear? Yep. This Nutrimetics party was great though, and I’d happily attend another, because I had a really fun time and I liked some of their products. Really, it’s a matter of personal taste, and one person’s boring plastic container will be another person’s wonder-system of kitchen organisation, and that’s the reason these brands, such as Tupperware and Nutrimetics, have been around for so long. They’re not for everyone, but their customers are loyal.
There is an additional appealing side to these, and other reputable Direct Selling organisations that I hadn’t really considered. Employment. They support women by offering them a work opportunity that may fit around other commitments, or be an opportunity for those without previous training or career experience. Most of these companies offer training courses, and women gain skills in the area they’ve chosen.
I don’t know that it’s something I’d choose to do too often, particularly given the somewhat meagre stash of restraint I brought along in my back pocket on Nutrimetics night. It is, however, a great way to touch, feel and try new products in comfortable surroundings with friends, in a similar purchasing environment to online shopping (though with a little extra peer pressure). It’s good to know that your purchase goes towards the income of your consultant though, rather than into the hands of a multinational chain (those bastards ;). And, simply because I can’t end a post with ‘bastards’, I bid you all good afternoon, good evening, and goodnight.