in the crowd
She had always been captivated with beauty. What made some women stand out from the crowd? What made them so desirable, so enviable, so perfect?
For as long as she could remember, she stood in front of the mirror every night. Arrays of make up and hair products would surround her. The colors and textures were the only things that occupied her thought. Every night, the same ritual.
Door locked, phone put away, glasses thrown off. Hair first. Makeup next.
Because no matter what she did, she wasn't beautiful. People wouldn't stare when she walked down the street. People wouldn't spare her that magical second glance. She'd never be that girl that everyone loved or loved to hate. Every night though, she'd try.
Straight hair, smoky eye, red lipstick.
Perfect curls, pink cheeks and lips to match.
Tousled waves, almost bare, green eye shadow.
She would never be the most beautiful, but there, in her bathroom, late at night, she could pretend. She could pretend she was special and amazing. She could pretend she was a glamorous model in a high fashion. She could pretend she was anyone other than herself.
The water would turn on and she'd stand in the shower for ages, washing everything away. Washing away her dreams and hopes and aspirations. Washing away the magical girl that took her place. The magical girl that would still look like nothing in the real world.
So that the next morning, she could go out into the world plain and hope that no one would see her envy. The world where she would always blend in.
For it's better to blend in voluntarily than to fail at standing out.