The Housewives Personal Appearance.

By Alison September 12, 2006 8 Comments 3 Min Read


From The Book of Hints and Wrinkle, 1934)

HOUSEWORK  is very hard on  one’s appearance,  this cannot be gainsaid; but without fussing or extraordinary trouble, you can do much to relieve the results of the hard work on your hands, face and skin.
Those who are able to spend a certain amount on beauty culture can, of course, repair the damages; but most of the people who are prepared to set aside anything in the region of ten pounds a year for this purpose are usually those who have a servant (or at least a charwoman) to do the heavy work.
So I am writing mainly for those who are either servantless or only have an occasional woman; the wife who runs a house where the income is say from two pounds ten shillings a week up to six or seven (for the latter have their problems too, and often have children to educate, and therefore deny themselves a servant).

As a beginning, let us take basic appearances, then move  to beauty culture and conclude with wardrobe and dress.    In eachl of these departments, there is much that can be done efficiently attractively and inexpensively by you yourself, in the home, may be a bit of extra work, one way and another, but the result will repay you a thousandfold and you will soon not notice those little extra moments; they will have become routine.
Without deprecating the importance of looking well groomed there is no doubt that your facial expression is more important and an expression cannot be altered by cosmetics or even massage; :it is the result of your inner attitude to life and those around you. So cultivate a contented mind and kindly thoughts. Try to be tolerant and understanding, rather than disparaging and censorious, and, above all, check any tendency to sneering. There may be a measure of excuse for discontent, but there is none for sneering, which produces a most unpleasant facial expression and causes indelible lines and wrinkles.                                                         
Your outlook on life is closely interwoven with your personal appearance, so watch yourself and cultivate the habit of looking happy, contented and cheerful. Smile and don’t frown or scowl nor worry over trifles. A smiling countenance is always attractive and a far better safeguard against the onslaught of age than all the physical jerks and cosmetics in the world.

Don’t allow yourself to become overtired if you can possibly help it. Nothing is gained by labouring on a job for two hours if it could be cleared out of the way in half that time were you not feeling so fagged. It will pay you much better to relax, even though it be only for five minutes, and lie flat on your back. It is wonderful what a few minutes in that position can do for a tired body.
Another simple way to restore energy when you are tired, and there is work to be done yet, is by sucking a lump of sugar, or a few boiled sweets, or a little chocolate. Sugar and chocolate have extraordinary energizing and vitalizing powers, especially if you do not indulge in them habitually, but reserve them for emergencies. Milk is another wonderful stimulant if fatigue overtakes you.
Many housewives make themselves unnecessarily tired by doing jobs standing up when they could just as well sit down to them. In every home there are many tasks, such as preparing fruits and vegetables, etc., at which you could sit down and at least partially rest while going on with your job, if you seize the opportunity…

***Please don’t suck sugar cubes Housekeepers!!***


  1. Alison, I am in stitches. Just love the expression: … were you not feeling so fagged! Petah

  2. Cookie says:

    Who wouldnt love to have a "charwoman" ? lololol

  3. Amethyst says:

    This is fabulous… lol… Made me chuckle…

  4. lizzie says:

    Love it,love it love it !Too fagged to write further……….

  5. Gena King says:

    Ha ha! I love that! but I am afraid if I lay down on my back for five minutes I may just stay there all day, clearly i need more chocolate to revive me!

  6. fiona Hornby says:

    Oh I just love this! If only I could lie down for just 5 minutes. I think if I did it would turn into more like 5 hours!

  7. Suzie says:

    Oh if only I weren't servantless! I would have more time and money to spend on beauty…

  8. Clare says:

    Wonderful! I have just discovered Brocante Home – it's late now but I'll be back! Clare x

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