I Have Beauty-Routine OCD

I know it's illogical, but if there's one misstep in my getting-ready routine, my day is R-U-I-N-E-D.
Publish date:
June 13, 2013
hair, skin, nails, psychology, organizing, showers, hygiene, routines

The other day, I stepped in the shower and belatedly realized I had forgotten to wash my face. Not a big deal, you’re probably thinking. After all, I was about to shower, which kind of implies I’d be washing my face anyway. And yet, an uneasy discomfort slowly spread throughout my entire body, and before I knew it, nothing was right in the world.

You see, I have a routine, and that routine mandates I always wash my face at the sink BEFORE I shower. Every day, for as long as I can remember, that’s how things have been done. Sure, there have been similar occasions when I had messed up my routine.

And on every one of those occasions, I was forced to reevaluate every single freaking thing in my life.

Momentarily paralyzed by the fact that my day--nay, MY LIFE--was now ruined, I naturally had to jump out of the shower, soaking wet, water pooling all over the bathroom floor, just so I could wash my face and set everything straight.

Many of you are probably wondering why couldn’t I just wash my face in the shower. Good god, all that water! No amount of relief, no matter how amazingly sigh-inducing, could be worth the slippery-floor death trap I just created. If I had just stayed in the shower, really, what’s the worst that could happen?

WELL, LET ME TELL YOU. Probably not much. I might be particular, but I’m not clinically insane. (Apologies if you are. Also, maybe stop reading here?) I’d probably feel slightly disturbed for those 15 minutes in the shower, then immediately move on with my life.

Still, I know it’s unreasonable to feel so attached to a routine. The fact that one misstep can throw off at least part of my day is completely irrational. My Melvin Udall antics don’t stop at the shower, either. I’ve been known to be quite an a-hole, too! LOL!! Great misdirection, Char.

All (not) kidding aside, this a-hole follows other strict beauty regimens, as well. When swiping face lotion out of a jar, it irks me to no end that the middle section gets used much more quickly than the sides of the jar. And so, with every scoop, I make it a point to keep my lotion as level as possible.

As for hydrating this hot bod of mine, I use a specific amount lotion for each part of my body. My calves, for example, require one-and-a-half pumps of lotion each; my thighs, another one-and-a-half pumps, and my arms, two.

My infamous shower routine, which you all now know must begin with my face, also ends with equal specificity; namely, involving a choreographed toweling-off.

When it comes to organizing my bathroom drawers? Well, they’re a complete mess. But it’s my mess. Each piece of random crap that I’ve accumulated has its place and better stay in its GD place.

And I know I’m not alone. One friend has to squeeze her toothpaste from the bottom of the tube and keep the spout from collecting remnants of paste AT ALL COSTS. Another always sticks those loose strands of hair that come out in the shower on the tiled walls. Yet another friend can’t stand even the slightest chip in her nail polish. One small blemish completely ruins her manicure and forces her to start all over again.

Psychiatrists (my friends and family with a penchant for overanalyzing) have told me these quirks are a way of maintaining control in a world where things so often seem uncontrollable. Also, maybe I need to loosen up.

To which I respond with an obsessively clean middle finger.

Do you have any quirky routines? Am I the only one with beauty OCD?