Skip to Content, Navigation, or Footer.
Logo of The Spectrum
Wednesday, April 24, 2024
The independent student publication of The University at Buffalo, since 1950

Getting ready: the foundations of female friendships

Girls exchange more than just products when they get ready for a night out

<p>The time spent on getting ready is a formative experience, especially during college. &nbsp;The process is often an accumulation of lessons we’ve learned from personal experiences and from others.&nbsp;</p>

The time spent on getting ready is a formative experience, especially during college.  The process is often an accumulation of lessons we’ve learned from personal experiences and from others. 

“Girls take so long to get ready.” 

“Getting ready” for a night out — a process that requires incredible deliberation and patience — is often reduced by the attitude that it’s unnecessary and frivolous. 

Nowhere was this attitude more on display than on Vine, where male creators exaggerated just how long it took girls to get ready (ironically in the format of a seven second video). 

In one Vine by creator King Bach and his on-screen girlfriend Lele Pons, she tells him to wait one second while she gets ready. When she exclaims that she’s ready in the seventh second of the video, she and Bach have aged into senior citizens. (To advance the bit musically, Christina Perri’s “A Thousand Years” plays in the background.) 

The bit still lives on TikTok. 

What’s clear from these videos is that these boyfriends haven’t sat down with their girlfriends to get ready with them. If you’re only checking in sporadically, you’re left unexposed to the intricate processes that unfold and the personal bonds that form beyond the door you peek from

Why do girls get ready?

The time spent on getting ready is a formative experience, especially during college.  The process is often an accumulation of lessons we’ve learned from personal experiences or from our mother, friends or other influential figures. It’s an enduring web of interpersonal connections that’s embodied by exchanges like this one between Avani Kapoor, a freshman health and human services major, and her friend Ava Frosini, a freshman occupational therapy major:

“I’ve watched her do her makeup, and I’m like, ‘Maybe I should do that step in my makeup routine,’” Kapoor said.

“Aw, you never told me that!” Frosini said.

Besides the short-term patience it requires to spend an hour (or a few) on yourself before a night out, long-term patience is required to understand the products you’re investing in, their compatibility with your body and emotions, and more. It’s an intimate period of development that you often confide in your friends about — it takes years.

Frosini used to take three hours on her mascara in eighth grade. At the time, she said getting ready “felt like a job.” But now, with more years of experience, she wonders “why my mascara had anything to do with how I looked that day.”

“I know I’m pretty without makeup. But I also know I’m pretty with makeup,” Frosini said. “I feel pretty no matter what. I don’t want to not feel pretty without makeup.” 

There’s also beauty in how naturally reassuring and empowering your friends are in front of the bathroom mirror. They encourage you to accept your body, in spite of all the insane beauty standards that everyone, even the people around us, hold us to. While seemingly surface-level, it’s an opportunity for insight that reveals what kind of relationship your friend shares with time based on their arrangement of actions, why they prefer a certain clothing item over another, why they prefer the placement of something on a body part.

There’s a physical exchange of sensibilities that happens when you hand your friend a product they need or let them wear one of your tops. It can even happen when you adjust your friend’s beanie — something that Frosini and another friend rushed to do after their friend, Alyssa Kessler, a freshman in nursing at SUNY Brockport, went, “Why do I look so weird in that?”

The magic is in how your friends absorb your reactions to what makes you feel good and what doesn’t, how they’re always able to recall their observations to help you in the future.

Five minutes into getting ready with them, Kapoor, Frosini, Kessler and two of their other friends — girls I had just met — welcomed me as their own. It’s a natural consequence of the getting ready atmosphere: you’re inclined to connect with anyone who wants to be a part of it — despite what skeptics may think.

Getting ready is the best part of the night. No matter how many times you do it, the process never fails to renew your connections to your friends. It’s an experience that everyone should live through at least once.

Tenzin Wodhean is a senior arts editor and can be reached at tenzin.wodhean@ubspectrum.com

Comments


Popular









Powered by SNworks Solutions by The State News
All Content © 2024 The Spectrum