My ass. 31 years of torment and tumultuous body hate have come to this – me gazing at my ass ceaselessly in the mirror. It used to be a quite nice ass, when I was around 22 years old – no cellulite, a perfect specimen for blue jeans and the tight flared corduroys I unfortunately used to favor when I was younger. While it certainly isn’t hideous looking now, I have frequent bouts of ass-related anxiety as I’ve gotten older.
This article easily could turn into a Germaine Greer-esque treatise about the history of the ass, and how the vision of the perfect ass has been synthesized by hormone-crazed, lust-contingent, sexist men. I should honestly say my ass neurosis is a figment of my own very female mind; men really could give a shit about my ass. No person that I’m aware of has ever made a negative comment about my posterior. My husband thinks it looks just fine. In my mind, it is massive, even though in reality it has probably expanded ever-so-slightly in the last decade. However, in the woman’s mind, we think: what will it look like over the next decade if this trend continues to happen? Will it look like two balls of flour dragging on the ground? Will I cease to be a vaguely attractive person? Is there a God? Etc. etc.
Anyway, the skincare brand Nivea has decided to use their grossly capitalistic aims to hawk an ass cream. Knowing how neurotic we women are about our asses in general, they have synthesized a product called “My Silhouette.” Nivea claims it has found a “Bioslim Complex” (their wording, not mine) which “redefines the body’s contours.” The directions tell the user to put it on thighs, stomachs, and any other place that needs to be “refined.” I saw it in my local Walgreens, and despite my relatively feminist education – which has told me that ass creams are just smoke and mirrors – I decided to buy it. It was on sale even (that was my excuse for buying it – pretty lame, if you ask me).
Anyway, I went from being unencumbered by ass creams to becoming an ass cream chemist pretty rapidly and without fail. First, I wondered what an ass cream must smell like. To my surprise, it has a slightly fruity scent; one wonders why smell would be so elemental in such an intimate product, and why it must smell like limes and citrus. Also, ass cream really isn’t a true ass cream; it has a more gel-like consistency.
So, I tried it, hoping to find the Holy Grail of ass anxiety-reducing firming agents. It felt sort of cool going on – it gave me the feeling that I had sort of wet my pants (i.e. totally unsexy). The gel dries down to a slightly sticky feel, which is somewhat uncomfortable if you’re trying to sit down at a computer, or do anything which might involve sitting. All in all, I guess it did make things “firmer” in that region for a few minutes, but overall I didn’t notice any visual difference. The tube says one has to apply it for four weeks to notice “redefined contours.” What Nivea doesn’t know is that the average woman doesn’t want to wait four weeks to make herself feel better about her ass. In conclusion, I guess the search for ass creams ends in frustration; maybe the ThighMaster (by Suzanne Somers!) would work better, who knows. I should probably just resort to “sucking it in” at important events and just live with my ass-related anxiety, or go to a psychiatrist who specializes in giving out large doses of Paxil for this sort of problem (an ass psychiatrist, of course, if one exists). Or maybe I should just read The Beauty Myth by Naomi Wolf again. At any rate, I need to just come to grips with the fact that there is no quick fix for angst which has almost zero basis related to anything important, or real…ha.