03/18/2013 06:06 pm ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

Mary Kay, Facial Hair and Me


You know it's a friendship you should keep when you show up to her house 25 minutes late and toss the contents of your purse all over her sparkling clean table. You do an archeological dig for the waxing strip, peel the random Band-Aid off of it and promptly affix it to your upper lip.

"WAX IT ON THE COUNT OF THREE!" you yell, and you swear that the sound you are hearing is the very last shard of your self-respect shattering on the floor.

She obeys.

This morning I attended a Mary Kay party with this same friend. She requested that she go by the pseudonym "Giselle." That name has always represented the term for a bodily substance college boys laugh about, but whatever. She waxed my upper lip, so I'm probably going to let it go.

So, anyway, "Giselle" was sitting next to me, applying foundation like a normal person, and I was tweezing away. "Does anyone else have horrible facial hair? What do you ladies do about it?"

"Pluck it."

"Wax it."

"Shave it."

"Steam clean it."

True story: Once I was dating this guy I'd met on Sorry, Dad. Yes, I was dumb. So anyway, we were hanging out in the living room and he started tugging on my face. Dave Matthews was crooning "Satelliiiiiiiiiite, in my eyeeeees..."

"OW! That hurts, Brett!"

"Um, Rachel? That's a hair. Attached to your face."

Stark white, right along my jaw line, and about two inches long.

I spent that night updating my profile and nursing my pride.

For some reason, I could handle the pain of an erupting ectopic pregnancy and a post-partum hemmorhage that left my tubeless uterus in the landfill, but apparently, I can't handle the pain of a facial hair being pulled.

The best time to pluck, FYI, is on the way to church. It's the only time I'm in the passenger seat. As we're rolling the rolling toy box out of the garage, Scott's eye catches a glimmer of the tweezer in my hand in the late morning sun.

"Can you at least put the tweezers down before we roll into the church parking lot?"

"Well, that depends. Do you want to continue to feel like you're making out with Sasquatch?"

This is the time when the kids are usually eager to interject, especially after I define Sasquatch.

"Yeah! Mommy's a big bear man!" they cheer.

The people at my church are super awesome and gracious and kind, so even if there are bats in the cave or I'm sporting Frankenstein's sideburns, no one's going to say a thing... except "Giselle."

I see her coming at me down the hall, and I'm proud to show her my hairless upper lip.

She starts laughing after we hug.

"Rach? Did a drunk guy apply your eye liner?"

Yes. This friendship is for keeps.