Every day living, we face another day dying. When we wake, we have the opportunity to contemplate what we will do with our precious time. Some people find mirrors and makeup to be solely vanity-oriented. They can also be some of the most excellent teaching tools, providing literal and metaphorical reflection opportunities.

When I sit down to apply my makeup each day, I see my Self. I see age. I see passing time.  Time gone is gone forever. I can never get it back.

Memento Mori — (Latin: “Remember you must die.”) –is the ancient practice of reflection on our mortality. There are several ways to practice acknowledgement of time passing. Quintessential symbols in vanitas art are 3 items: a flower (representing life), skull (representing death), and hourglass (representing passing time).

The trilogy of applying, wearing, and removing makeup can represent each day as its own life. Application process feels like birthing essence. Wearing cosmetics for the day symbolizes experiences and time passing. Removing maquillage provides retreat and closes the loop. This full-circle ritual feels meditative.

“We do not suddenly fall on death, but advance toward it by slight degrees. We die every day. Every day, a little of our life is taken from us right up to yesterday. All past time is lost time; the very day we are now spending is shared between ourselves and death. It is not the last drop that empties the water-clock, but all that has flowed out already.”


You may also like...