Hope in a Jar

While my boyfriend was in line to get the new iPhone last week, I decided to pop into Saks to use the ladies room. But before I could beeline it to the loo, something caught my eye. The La Mer counter. I’d heard about this miracle cream from countless magazines where celebrities talk about their beauty regimens – it is the “it” moisturizer for the jet set, and it costs a pretty penny. I figure it’s the same people who buy their underwear at La Perla who buy this stuff too. Out of my La League, sad to say. But there I was at that moment, and I thought, this is my one chance to try it, to see what all the hype is about. I unscrewed a jar of eye cream. It was empty. I opened a pot of face cream. Empty. A bottle of serum? Empty again. I was starting to see a pattern here. The people at Saks were no fools – they had people like me (people in the store for the sole purpose of using the restroom) pegged. The jig was up. …Or was it?

I guess the rattling of the jars coupled with disappointed sighs caught the attention of the sales lady, because she came over to ask if I needed any help. I struck up a friendly conversation with her, explaining that I’d just moved to town, and my eye cream had run out and I was looking to try something new. I added (perhaps for credibility of my worthiness of premium products) that “I’ve been using Jurlique, which I love because it’s all natural – it’s grown on the company’s farm in New Zealand – but it’s hard to find here”. She offered up some product suggestions, and, to my amazement and delight… some free samples! I’d won the fancy face cream lottery! (also known as: four mini testers worth about $60)

I carefully applied the eye cream that night, smiled, and went to bed pretending to be somebody who could afford a face like an Oscar winner. The next morning, I approached the mirror with excitement and suspense, eager to see the clock turned back and the eyes of a bygone era looking back at me. Carefree eyes, pure eyes, eyes devoid of signs of the trials and tribulations of adulthood. I gazed carefully at my reflection. From the front, from the side, from the other side. I squinted and stared and searched for my miracle. But alas, if it was there, it was invisible to the naked eye. I’d applied at least $10 worth of product – surely a microscopic miracle had occurred?

That’s ok, I thought, it’s not like I can actually buy this stuff. It’s really better this way. Then yesterday, I thought I saw a change. I asked my boyfriend and he didn’t notice anything. But I thought my eyes looked a little less tired, that maybe my micro miracle was growing. And today, I’m almost convinced that something is different, better somehow. Sigh. How’s a girl like me to win this game? If it works, how can I turn my back on a miracle, knowing I’m failing to live up to my potential? Am I doomed to the life of La Junkie who prowls Saks Fifth Avenue’s across the state in search of my next sample sized fix?

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