Press your spaceface close to mine

Who’s Up For a Little Polydimethylsiloxane?

Posted by Sunday on Jul 6, 2008 at 11:19 pm in Daily Space, Weird Science

While it is well known that for every idea there is an internet contingent, I was nevertheless surprised to discover that “beauty blogging” is a massive sub-culture about to shake the sub-. YouTube’s sidebar category of “Howto & Style” will have on any given day no less than three videos of someone applying eyeshadow on themselves. I suppose we should start a pool for how long before it is produced for cable along side “Ice Road Truckers.

And a late warning to our readers: this post is 95% lame lady crap and 5% science. You’ll survive.

You see, I wear the make-up. I don’t put too much thought into it, but like any hobby you quickly and unhappily learn that for every cheap item that works great there are 50 that burn your eyes or make giant, pulsating cysts form on your forehead. And that alternately, for every expensive tube of lipstick that wears great, there is at least another one that rubs off on your teeth within seconds. It’s complicated. Lots of women like it, as evidenced by the entire industry. Just as many are intimidated and offended, as evidenced by me and Leesa clutching each other for support as we stumble around Sephora, eyes glazing over from a combination of fluorescent lighting and airborne mineral-foundation.

I distinctly remember guffawing at the sudden advancement of a new category of make-up: primer. Like, painting primer, I thought? Jesus, this industry is getting out of control. Primer! Small bottles of some viscous, milky-clear fluid for $40 and higher! We’ve been happily slathering on foundation (which, I believe, was supposed to be the bottom layer of make-up, as evidenced by its name) without ill effects for many a generation, and now you’re telling us we need “primer”?

300.jpgAnd that’s when I made several stunning scientific discoveries┬╣. The first is that “primer” is primarily dimethicone (short for polydimethylsiloxane), a silicon-based organic polymer that makes stuff slippery while still dry. Hmm, I think, I’ve been diligently slathering dimethicone in my hair for ages now (shout out to Aveda’s Light Elements Smoothing Fluid, whut-whut!). And lord knows I love a polymer. Secondly, an over-the-counter product made by Monistat (yes, that Monistat) called “Chafing Relief Powder-Gel” is… drumroll please… primarily dimethicone. The same consistency and appearance as the expensive “primer”. And at about $6 a tube.

So bladda bladda bladda, in the name of science I bought the tube of anti-chafing gel marketed toward ladies with chafing lady-parts and rubbed it on my face. And then I put make-up on. And you know what? It worked like a goddamn charm. Make-up went on smoother, blended better, wore better, felt better.

Turns out effortless, natural beauty like mine requires a base-coat of silicon-based polydimethylsiloxane.

Oh science. Will you ever stop being weird?

A public service announcement: some people have sensitivities to silicones, so do a test patch (inside of wrist or other tender area) before smearing all over your face. Follow this same advice for any material you feel you might be sensitive to: hot sauce, nanotechnology, foreign currency, etc.

Amazing polydimethylsiloxane at Wikipedia.

┬╣And by “stunning scientific discoveries” I mean that the first 10,000 Google hits bring up “Monistat Chafing Gel is best make-up primer!!!1!!

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July 6th, 2008 | Daily Space, Weird Science

4 Responses to “Who’s Up For a Little Polydimethylsiloxane?”

  1. aargh Says:

    In a similar vein, folks have been using Preparation H slathered on the torso to appear more toned in order to attract the opposite sex.
    that’s how we attract a mate in this modern world. the one two punch of vaginal anti-chafing powder and hemorrhoid cream.

  2. Sunday Says:

    I’m thinking about caulking toothpaste on something. I’m not sure what, yet. Maybe my knees?

  3. Leesa Says:

    I must be the laziest girl ever. I can hardly work up the energy to use base, much less primer.

  4. Sunday Says:

    I’m by no means rolling out of bed each morning and putting a whole face on, believe you me. But it actually makes the process easier for me – no blending out the damn base or making sure that everything is clean and moisturized first. I mean, you just rub some stuff on your face and look great, whereas I look either dry/blotchy or break-outy unless I spend a half and hour at it.

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