Why do you smell of Cif?

At university I tried terribly hard to be frugal. Unfortunately, I am incoherently foolish with money, so would spend all my term’s allowance on a fur-lined après-ski coat, and later find myself wandering forlornly about Tescos, wondering why everything cost so much money.

I decided to ‘save money’ by turning my back on the over-indulgent fripperies of ‘named beauty products’ or ‘shampoos made for humans’, and instead proudly spent 56p on a blue viscous liquid which purported to be an ‘all-purpose washer’.

‘Look,’ I said happily, brandishing my vat of clean. ‘And you probably thought girls squandered all their money on fancy beauty regimes.’ My male housemates looked at me in alarm, and one of them slowly reached under our kitchen sink, to pull out a ominously similar-looking blue viscous liquid.

Naturally, I refused to let their bourgeois conceptions of ‘what is fit for humans’ deter me, and spent at least a week screamingly itchy, washing myself with what seemed to be re-packaged oven cleaner.

All grown-up now, yesterday I dragged my friend to Boots. ‘I want something that says, ‘Wake up!’ but in a calm and soothing way,’ I told her, scanning the shower gels. My friend looked bewildered, and suggested a Radox gel. ‘Oh no,’ I told her kindly. ‘I can’t use Radox products. They have odd openings on their bottles. It confuses me terribly.’

I was close to giving up when I spotted that they were selling Original Source shower gels for £1. ‘Perfect,’ I said to my friend, picking up a luridly yellow bottle. ‘It is great being a grown-up.’

My housemate asked me yesterday why I smelled so strongly of Cif, but seeing as that’s a brand-named household product, I’m taking it to mean that I am pretty much a designer-infused grown-up dream.

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