Photos: Alena Ermishina
Interview: Margarita Virova
For the heading "Available" we study the contents of beauty cases, dressing tables and cosmetic cases of the characters we are interested in - and show all this to you.
The notorious balance between rest and work is not a blurry mantra of coaches, but a vital thing
About relationships with the face and body
I managed to make friends with my appearance about two, maybe three years ago. Before that, I was a child of glossy magazines from the 2000s, who, as a teenager, was taught, on the one hand, to wash off mascara before going to bed, and on the other, to sincerely hate my wide hips, pale skin color and facial contours and believe that if you do fifty more squats in the gym and buy another face cream with a credit card, your life will definitely get better. For several years I squatted like crazy and bought creams, once I lost fifteen kilograms in six months, but for some reason my life did not get better, and my self-confidence did not increase.
Now I understand that near-feminist media and literature helped me to embark on the path of an adequate attitude to my appearance (I remember well how at the institute I read Naomi Wolf's "The Myth of Beauty" for the first time in a few nights and looked at the world completely differently), the first serious mutual love as well as the experience of observing people. At some point, it struck me that almost all of my beautiful girlfriends, who seem to me to be unusually attractive and charismatic, are unhappy with their appearance and find something to scold themselves for. Often only we ourselves notice our shortcomings, and we broadcast into the world that image of ours in which we ourselves believe - these thoughts on paper seem to be creepy platitudes, but for some reason it takes years to realize them.
I like that even brands and publications that used to be far from feminist values are now slowly putting pressure on us with stereotypes about how we should look and what kind of cosmetics to buy - I think that without outside influence it is difficult to stop forever trying to be like someone else. Still, as long as curly hair, standard size 46, or signs of natural aging are portrayed in pop culture and the media as exotic and not a form of the norm, we will all have to work hard to accept ourselves.
About care and make-up
I confess, I am one of those heroines who are not held in high esteem by the commentators of the "Available" column. I love to look at girls experimenting with cosmetics, but I do it myself very rarely - to be honest, I'm just tired of the abundance of cans. I have long ago determined the minimum with which I feel confident: an even tone, mascara, eyebrow mascara and sometimes lipstick or a little highlighter. Anything bigger on the face is tiring. In addition, I like to grab my face with my hands, roar at movies in cinemas, constantly kiss and hug boyfriends and wash furiously in the office toilet when my eyes get tired - all this is best done with a minimum amount of makeup on my face, so you have to make sacrifices.
Another thing is leaving, I like to tinker with it. I pay a lot of attention to nourishing my skin and hair and will not go to bed without rubbing in several different substances. A two-step cleansing, exfoliation, oil or serum, cream is a daily routine that is good for relaxing and distracting from the thought of work.
A separate chapter of my epic about self-acceptance is battles with hair. I was born with a shock of naughty, curly and fluffy hair, and part of my life because of this actively suffered. Dry and porous hair instantly frizzy due to high humidity, difficult to style, hate combing. Where my happy friends can get by with shampoo and balm, I always needed a whole arsenal: shampoo, balm, mask, leave-in conditioner or serum, oil for the ends of the hair, the right hairdryer. All this is needed to remove the fluff and turn the small curl (which may look great, but I am not always comfortable with it) into an obedient wave.
At the same time, when you have dry and voluminous hair, special care - masks and serums - turns into a basic one. Most often I buy the most ordinary shampoos (the main necessary function is cleansing), but I don’t skimp on masks and I like to experiment with them. This is the part of daily care that will always show the effect. Well, do not forget to cut your hair once every three to four months, even if you are growing your hair: I neglected this for a long time, but then I realized that without frequent haircuts, care does not work properly.
I'm a classic office worker who stares at a computer screen for about twelve hours out of twenty-four, chewing stress on a bar from a vending machine. In the long term, there is nothing good about this, and if I have the opportunity to spend an evening on Pilates or work out at home with dumbbells instead of after-hours work, which can be done in the morning, I will do so: over time, you realize that a healthy back and an even mood are more important than the inconstant disposition of bosses, and the notorious balance between rest and work is not a blurry mantra of coaches, but a vital thing.
Sport helps to distract from bad thoughts and feel strength in the body, so I have long ceased to punish myself with sports for eating cake, but I just do it for my pleasure when I am in the mood. I used to go to the pool, jogged and practiced yoga for several years, but for the last year I have been doing three or four times a week at home, using YouTube lessons or on my own - although, of course, this requires self-discipline, which can be problematic.
I have few other healthy habits: I like to eat and drink beer with friends, and I also drink several cups of coffee a day. But I try to remember that the body needs balance and for a cup of coffee there should be two glasses of water, for one pizza with salami - a couple of healthy breakfast cereals, and for one burning deadline or intense party - a sleepy evening with a mask on your face.