I am always, always, always late for stuff. Deadlines, busses, lunch dates ... you name it, I've probably been late for it. I'm so used to being late that apparently, my spring cleaning urge didn't kick in until today. But oh it kicked in with a vengence, and it was my bathroom drawers and cabinets that took the hit.
Being a product junkie and all, you tend to accumulate stuff. Sometimes, the stuff is so awful that you have to forcefully chuck it in the trash to properly communicate your displeasure with it. Most times though, it just kind of sits there. You might use it every now and again when the fancy strikes. But generally, its main job is to clutter your bathroom and gather dust.
It's not the product's fault... it didn't do anything bad. There was maybe just one thing it did that you didn't like, or maybe the smell turned you off. Maybe you used to love it, but got bored of it. Or maybe it's just a good product that you know you'll never get around to using, simply because you're always buying newer and more exciting stuff. So you end up with dozens of barely-used products and increasingly crowded cabinet and counter-space.
Hey, I hear ya. So much so that I went on my own little "purge" mission. Why hang on to all this stuff when there's someone out there who might need it or want it? And so I wandered on over to my local craigslist site. Craigslist is like a big on-line classifieds section. People can put up ads for pretty much anything they like. Almost every major North American city will have its own craigslist site.
Anyway, I wrote up a little ad offering all my left over beauty junk for free, for whoever wanted them.* (Go ahead and click on that if you want a peek at what used to be in my bathroom) Because who knows, there might be some poor college kid out there who is too broke to buy shampoo. Or maybe some other kindred make-up junkie whose heart skips a beat when she sees "free" and "products" in the same sentence. If you're not using your crappe, why deprive them of it?
And folks, this is a brutal process. I'm sure my list should have been twice as long. Because it's tough to part with your stuff! Small squeaky persuasive voices in your brain will insist:
"Sure you haven't used this perfume since the week you bought it, 2 years ago. But you still like it! You might use it again!"
"Oh come on, this is a good lotion! Yeah you don't use it much now, but what if you ran out of the 4 other bottles you've currently got going?"
"Shucks, you TOTALLY need 3 tubs of styling putty! Nooo don't get rid of that one, it's got a pink label!!!"
But in the end? You totally feel better for it. For one thing, your bathroom will be much neater. Plus, this clears the way for whatever new products you're buying this season. Oh don't lie, you KNOW you're going to buy more. It's what the ad execs of the world have programmed us to do, and do happily.
On top of all that, some person or people out there will be giddy with joy because they just got a bagful of free cosmetics. And hey, maybe they'll Pay It Forward, and be nicer to their mailman, who will then smile extra hard at the coffe dude, who will in turn help the little old lady cross the street, inspiring her to give the homeless guy $10 with which he buys a warm meal, the sight of which somehow makes the brilliant scientist realize the missing key to her experiment and go on to develop the cure for Alzheimer's!
There! Make-up does make the world a better place. I've just proved it.
And if you don't live in a big enough city where an online ad would generate responses? Arrange a swap-night with your friends! Make a poster and put it on the community bulletin board! Visit some churches or shelters and see if they need anything. Because my GOD, how lucky are we that we can afford to buy -- and not use -- 3 bottles of shampoo?
It's soooo easy to do a little bit of good sometimes. In 2 months, you probably won't remember that almost-full bottle of perfume you gave away. But the man who took it from you? The one who is struggling to make ends meet and wouldn't have been able to give his poor overworked wife a Mother's Day present if it wasn't for this? You're not likely to forget the look of excitement and gratitude in his eyes any time soon.
* All that crap was spoken for in under an hour! People LOVE free stuff!