It’s July 4th, the most beloved holiday of our neighbours to the south, a time when they celebrate their extreme independence from all other nations. After all, they totally divorced Mom and Dad, aka the UK, while we here in Canada are still doing some kind of strange trial separation thing. We can’t help it if we think Mom looks super pretty on all our coins and we look forward to family reunions at the Commonwealth Games. If all the world were child stars, America would be the Macaulay Culkin of countries – totally and utterly divorced from the Motherland in his early adolescence. Canada, on the other hand, would be Wynnona Judd, content to stay by Mom’s side forever.
I can’t help but wonder if America’s break from all other nations and its desire to start a fresh country with no interference plays a huge role in the American beauty aesthetic – the whole girl-next-door, innocent thing. Even though American history is burdened with its own dark times like civil war, slavery, witch trials and the Bush years, they still love a fresh, young face that makes ’em believe the world is just a clean canvas yet to be altered by the hand of experience. But I digress. In honour of July 4th, I decided to put my freshest face forward today, to mask the mistakes I’ve made under a visage that feigns to be makeup-free and full of innocence, hope and promise. Here’s how you too can look girl-next-door, 4th of July chic with just a handful of products.
Go For Clean, Dewy Skin
Sure, the Real Housewives are the new normal when it comes to what the girl-next-door actually is in American culture, but the ideal is still the same. In the words of Tom Petty: “She’s a good girl, loves her mama, loves Jesus and America too.” The all-American girl is natural, and she’s not trying to hold on to some Old World idea of staying out of the sun to avoid looking like the working classes. She’s totally real and down-to-earth in the true sense of the term in that she’d help plow a field if she felt like it. To assume the identity of a dewy-skinned, sun-kissed sweetheart, opt for a tinted moisturizer instead of a foundation, like Bobbi Brown SPF 15 Tinted Moisturizer Oil Free.
Have Kissable Pink Lips
The all-American girl doesn’t leave her mark on her boyfriend’s face with merlot-shaded lipstick; she quietly makes out with him behind the bleachers after bible studies, and no one’s the wiser for it… at least that’s what I think happens based on all the ’80s films I grew up on. Clinique’s Chubby Stick Moisturizing Lip Colour Balm in Curvy Candy is a sheer bubblegum pink that looks like your lips were just a gift from the angels… Mormon angels, of course.
Mascara, Mascara, Mascara!
In my head, every perfect American girl has big doe eyes like Zooey Deschanel and bats her lashes like wind-generated electricity depends on it. The all-American girl would never wear visible eye liner because her wide-eyed optimism doesn’t require it. That’s why you’ve got to pile on the mascara, and not in a Liza Minelli-clumpy way; even if Liza is one of the most amazing American women to ever live. Opt for a mascara that doesn’t clump easily. Right now, I’m obsessed with this super reasonably priced mascara, MarcelleXtension Plus Mascara, that you can get right at the drugstore… which is exactly where an all-American girl would buy her mascara anyway. Wear your rose-coloured glasses over top, but only metaphorically because you want to show off those peepers!
Opt For Natural Waves
For some reason, Hollywood films have equated perfectly cropped, straight hair with the bad girls and, in some cases, “the Other,” if you will. Or maybe I’ve just watched Milla Jovovich in Zoolander too many times. Regardless, the all-American girl doesn’t overly style her hair with straighteners, blow dryers or even heavy mousses and gels. That’s why you’re going to need a majorly awesome hair product if you’re going to attempt the air-dry look. I suggest Moroccanoil Intense Curl Cream, which softens curls and leaves them totally touchable… approachable, if you will, just like the girl-next-door.