|Beautynomics - The Economics of Vanity|
|...and they say vanity isn't economical.|
Wednesday, February 15, 2006
One of the jargons, that I happen to absorb quite well during my first few days as an Economics student were the terms, "scarcity", and "opportunity cost". They're one of the few basic terms taught to Economics students before things get harder. hehe :) They might sound simple, at first, but there are some important ideas presented by these two terms.
Scarcity, in layman's term , is the lack of something. In this world of ours, no matter how boundless the resources are, face it, our resources are most limited. For people like us, we don't have all the time in the world, all the money , and all the talents and skills. For bigger societies, countries, and companies, they have limited resources as well - their factors of production - manpower, capital ( money, or land ), and technology. No wonder hyperbolic and fantasy films ( Richie Rich...Princess Diaries ) always earn - men have always wanted to get everything he needs. That's okay , as one of my professors told me, the world can provide every person's needs. The worst part is, men, by nature, have always wanted to fulfill their wants, as much as possible. Want is such a strong term, because it is synonymous of the word, "whim". The world, is not enough ( yes, this was a James Bond movie. That's how strong my point is. hahaha:) ) for even one person's wants.
So to sum up, scarcity arises with the problem of this world, having limited resources, with man's unlimited wants!!! With scarcity, say, we lack money, we are faced with a tough decision - where to spend our money with. 2 Maybelline Eye shadow trios, or 1 Shu Uemura Eyeshadow? With scarcity in terms of time, we are faced with another tough decision. Sleep 20 minutes earlier, or spend the twenty minutes giving yourself a home facial? For the cosmetics companies - allot budget for technological research ( to make the products better ) , or just do away with huge budget promotional ads? ( I say, don't cheat on us! We want good products! and good ads :P )
On the other hand, opportunity costs, is another term for foregone costs. Costs might be numerical in value, or something not numerical as well. It is the cost that arises when you give up something to get something else. Given that we have scarce resources, sometimes we have to choose, and there are alternatives presented to us. Choosing one alternative, would cost us the value of the other alternative that we didn't choose. Too much to read? Read on, I'm about to drive to my point in my beautynomics paragraphs just below this.
In this world, I believe, there is a scarcity of beautiful faces. I do not intend to insult people that they are not beautiful. Beauty, I agree, is in the eyes of the beholder. Beauty is relative. I don't care that much for shapes of noses, skin color, irregularly shaped body parts. Goodness, they're God's gifts. There must be reasons enough why you are like that. Remember, society dictates what beautiful should be like. If society can do that, I can also dictate what beauty should be like, for myself. For me, beauty ( let's peg it at face-value ) is having a well-maintained face. A clear one.
Some people don't value skin care as much as I do. Having a bad experience with it, in my teenage years, I think I'm one of those people whose efforts were the most to keep myself looking good - zapping blemishes, redness, and aiming for a glowing, fresh skin. I mean, even if I don't look good in the eyes of others, they sure wouldn't complain about my skin, my hair, or my what. For me, a well-maintained face is beautiful already.
Again, some people don't value skin care as much as I do. They're fine with occasional pimples, or permanent pimples, blotchiness , and protruding whiteheads * wahh...nightmare *. I mean honestly, can you live with that? Whenever someone looks at you, they STARE at your one , throbbing, red spot in your skin. One lone zit takes all the attention away from your radiant personality. One sole bumpy bumpy zit causes you to be discriminated. It takes it all away from you!!!!!!!!!!!!!! That's how unfair life is. So, convinced? You need to be! ( I am the brainwasher..haha kidding )
The world needs a fresh supply of clean, and clear faces. The major scarcity that people face as hindrance to have clear faces, is TIME. People, refuse to allocate some of their TIME to properly have a routine of cleansing ( exfoliating 2-3 x a week) , toning, and moisturizing ( and treating ). Believe me, investing 20 minutes of your time everyday ( 10 min morning, 10 min before bedtime ), and you're a step closer to clear skin! Why?
Cleanse - Cleans your skin, gets rid of the oil and dirt accumulated in your skin
Exfoliate - Sloughs off dead skin cells. We accumulate dead skin cells everyday that causes our skin to look dull, lifeless, and with no glow. Boring skin. Exfoliate! It gives you glowing skin =)
Tone - Not everything washed with the cleanser is removed. Toning cleanses your pores, restores your skin's PH balance, and refines, and tightens your pores. Open pores attract more dirt, ya know.
Moisturize - skin , without water is like lips without lipbalm. Moisturizer makes your skin look more supple,soft, smooth, and younger.
Treat - kills, and even prevents zits! ( Blemish-control )
It's actually a winner! But still, other people still prefer studying, or watching tv, or even, sleeping than doing the skin care regimen. There comes the opportunity cost. When you forego doing your routine for sleeping earlier, you just lost your opportunity for great skin.
Do we have a cost attached to it? YES, definitely. You run the risk of accumulating more germs in your skin , hence a zit ( pimple ) in the next few days. You earn a zit, you lose ALOT in your self confidence. You hide in your room, you couldn't even walk with your head up high. So, was that something valuable that you just forewent? Definitely, YES. You might get eight hours of sleep, for goodness sake, but you sleep with your skin dirty. Doesn't make sense.
I say, the Opportunity Cost of a skin care routine is sky-rockety-high! The costs associated with NOT availing a skin care regimen, is SUPER HIGH (*alarming tone.hehe I'm DEAD SERIOUS! ). So don't ever, ever exchange this regimen, or twenty minutes of your day for something else! Goodness, it's ONLY twenty minutes, it can work wonders on your well-maintained skin. It can gain you friends, earn you compliments, and turn some heads! But foregoing this opportunity of having great skin, is deadly. Just think of the consequences of having bad skin. Physical ( swollen , burned, or whatever bad! ), Emotional ( bubhye, self confidence ), Financial ( a trip to the derma again?)
Twenty minutes of skin care a day, keeps the dermatologist away! :)
(I just copied Yakult, and the doctor )
Up next, my supply and demand series!=) Watch out for it :)
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An economics graduate that always hated her math
but loved her theories.
Believes that Economics can be found in :
- the bathroom
- in front of your vanity mirror
- an in every place beautiful.
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