I got caught up in a “Sex and The City” marathon not too long ago, and one of my favorite episodes ever, “The Good Fight,” happened to come on.

That particular one really resonated with me for a few reasons, namely because I, much like Carrie Bradshaw, suffer from SSB: Secret Single Behavior. While Bradshaw would never let her significant other see her eating a stack of saltine crackers smothered in grape jelly, there’s a fuckload of beauty-related practices I’d never ever let my man – if I had one – see me perform.

Before y’all flip out on me, know this: I’m not alone. According to thissurvey, 70% of women believe hiding their thorough beauty regimen from their partners is paramount in maintaining the magic in their relationships. I am proudly a part of that 70% (even though I am currently single).

It’s no secret that my primping process is all kinds of exhaustive; I’ve discussed the fact that I regularly exfoliate my buttsnatch my own snatch, indulge in weekly mud maskswhiten my own teeth – I even tried to make my own perfume once. Among the things I haven’t shared with you (as of yet): it takes me an hour to detangle my kinky curly hair, I smear cream all over my upper lip to remove peach fuzz, I tear up during my weekly $6 brow (and widow’s peak) threading appointments and I even sleep in my makeup if I end up getting lucky and pulling an all-nighter.

To be honest, I don’t think there’s anything wrong with playing into the I’m-pretty-much-perfect game. I’ve always been told, “How you catch them is how you keep them.” If I met him with my hair, nails and makeup done to the nines, and kept that up while dating, why should that change once we get comfortable? I’m not saying that I think I nor other women should be picture-perfect 24-hours a day, but I don’t plan to abandon my personal (yet private) commitment to beauty, either. Why let yourself go once you fall in love?

Anyway, I’m asking you — what’s your SBB: Secret Beauty Behavior? Is there any part of your beauty regimen that you wouldn’t want anyone else to see?

Keep up with me over on Twitter: @IndiaJewelJax!


This post originally appeared on XOJane. Republished with permission. Click here for more India Jewel on XOJane! 

  • AnnT

    There is no way I’d let a man watch me squeeze the blackheads out of my nose or pluck stray hairs, or let him watch me use my ped egg.
    I’m not sure if it’s SSB, being raised as an only child, or a combination thereof.

  • Treece

    First let me say that I am single. I do pluck, wax, weave, and do many of the things us women do to look what we believe is “attractive”. But, if I’m looking for a lasting, serious relationship I’m not going to spend the rest of my life hiding how I look underneath my make up or my regimen. At some point, you’re going to see me with hair that isn’t perfect or sans make up, or with a little peach fuzz on my upper lip. I would hope that if we are in a meaningful relationship, it won’t send you running for the hills. A guy has to be willing to take you as you are, without all the extra decor. And maybe knowing how much effort you put into trying look good will get him to appreciate it.

  • Mike

    Most guys can except most things. However, wigs and sew-ins when you’re head actually looks like you’ve just came from out of the cotton fields and you’re dam near bald with burnt up sides is a bit much.

  • AnnT

    I agree. My only issue is with the “throughput” and the active process of me taking care of (some) of my beauty regimen.

    You’re either gonna see the “cow” or the “steak”. I don’t need him all up in the slaughterhouse watching how the former becomes the latter.

  • Pseudonym

    ‘You’re either gonna see the “cow” or the “steak”. I don’t need him all up in the slaughterhouse watching how the former becomes the latter.’

    That was the perfect way to put it.

  • Billy Paul

    “A guy has to be willing to take you as you are, without all the extra decor.”

    Interesting comment; however, allow me to add the following:
    - one’s appearance is arguably just as important as one educational background;
    - the only excuse for a downward trend in one’s appearance are health issues (i.e. medication that promotes hair growth, pregnancies, or simple old age); and
    - when one begins to neglect their appearance that person must be prepared for their partner’s response.

    “And maybe knowing how much effort you put into trying look good will get him to appreciate it.”
    The above statement appears to be grounded in a cruel fallacy that a guy should/could/would acknowledge what you as a woman should already be doing, i.e. look attractive. It’s similar erroneous logic that supports the argument by underachieving males that they their spouse/girlfriend/lover should APPRECIATE that he has a job or is responsible.


  • Billy Paul

    Touche! I love sisters, period. However, I have a hard time with perms, weaves and similar accoutrements. Let me be the first to say that fake hair is out. You can curse me all you want, but you can’t change reality. If you wear your hair naturally, more power to you, Love. For the rest of the ladies, please at least consider the natural route.

    How many “men” have you attracted just because you had the fake hair? How different would your life be without it? When was the last time that you’ve seen your natural hair?

  • Humanista

    This is funny. I don’t think I’d be interested in my man seeing me,I dunno,”prepare” my intimate parts…But he’s seen me get my eyebrows done, do my nails, twist my hair up like coolio before bed, put on make up (I don’t wear much). For a while, I used to avoid going through my hair wash process in my bf’s presence (that just-washed pre-detangled fro look is not what’s good!), but I eventually got over it…now I can even go so far as ask for help rinsing the conditioner out in the sink and feel comfortable.

  • Bren

    The only ssb I have is shaving.

  • EST. 1986

    I have a natural appearance, so I have nothing to hide.

  • bijoux

    I was once at the hair salon and a lady was in there taking her weave out to be replaced. It happened, when she was in the “no weave, just her hair” step, her husband walked into the salon and this lady ran into the bathroom and hid there until he left. She said she can’t let him see her without her weave.

    I understand certain things to be kept private, but I think some people just take it way to far. I mean, I wouldn’t want him to see me shave my woo-ha!, but if he has a problem with something as simple as my hair, then he gotta go.

  • Rosey

    I’m single and live alone…I walk around in face masks all day and whip up deep conditioning treatments for my hair (some of them don’t smell the best). My future husband better get used to them.

  • http://gravatar.com/latinlover Pseudonym

    My only thing I keep hidden is my Veet hair removal (especially when I have the slather of creme down my butt crack). THAT will never be seen. I don’t even like seeing it myself and curse when I have to sneak (in my empty house, mind you) into the kitchen for paper towels to rinse off b/c I forgot to grab them beforehand.

  • Treece

    Carry, let me explain. What I mean is that men tend to think that the decor (i.e. make up, hair-do, sexy clothes, plucked eye brows, shaved legs and other regions) is something we HAVE to do or “should” do, in your words. Mind you, there are men out here that really don’t care about any of that. I know b/c I have friends/acquaintances that don’t do any of it and are happily married to men that don’t mind. The “appreciation” comes in when you have men with a mindset such as yours who think that women “should” always look a certain way. It takes a lot of xtra effort for women to look good by men’s standards. More effort than men put into how they look (no matter how fine he may be). Appreciation is simply knowing how much xtra time and effort it takes for me to look good and not taking it for granted. Like so many men do.

  • Lacy

    What’s funny is these same guys they say they want a girl without ‘weave’ or ‘added help’ are checking for these SAME girls over the more ‘natural’ ones….stop faking the funk, you like what looks GOOD. Period.

  • Me

    I sleep over with the guy I’m dating quite often and he’s probably seen me without makeup on more than he’s seen me with it. I love makeup and when we met I had makeup, hair, nails, etc but I feel that if he can’t see me without my makeup, sleep with me between waxes, know that I have to wash my booty than we really can’t be together. Guess we got over that the first time I had to be all unladylike in his bathroom…

  • Billy Paul

    @ Treese

    To begin, I LOVE sisters to death, period. And shall find one to marry and grow old with, period.

    I understand your position; unfortunately, I can not adhere to such logic.

    Let me explain, your friend’s relationship should not be taken to represent the whole, as such is simply illogical (one should never assume that the part represents the whole). I understand that some women, such as yourself, may feel that beauty regiments are not required. However, in the aggregate, men have chosen to side with those women who keep up their appearance.

    Further, and I hate to reiterate a prior point, but one should never be given any praise for doing the bare minimum of what is expected of them, i.e. be a good provider (men) and be attractive (women).

    Be not mislead, these are the ramblings of an mediorcre invalid and you needn’t take into account the above. I wish and your partner the best.

  • Billy Paul

    @ Lacy

    Please define the term “good.” Is the term similarly defined by both men and women? Arguably not.

    My preferences are personal as are your own. However, there is a trend that is picking up steam not only here in the States, but also in other places in the Diaspora, such as Brazil (my adoptive country).

    Forgive me if my comment came across as somewhat abrasive. All I was trying to say was that I think GOD did not make a mistake when he made you, my sister.

    Carry on, family.

  • Billy Paul

    Preach, Queen, preach.

  • Mike

    @Billy Paul

    My comment was not about nor against perms or even an extension. My comment was about wigs and sew-ins covering their entire head. That’s a no go.

  • JDF

    i love this post!!! As a matter of fact, you have given me an idea…exfoliating the fanny, absolute genius. Either way, I’m uber guilty and proud of it. It’s none of their darn business…they typically love the end, but don’t have time for the story!!!

  • apple

    i think my hair regimen would be the only thing i hide.. i dont even show this to best friends so i know with a guy it will be a problem

  • mEE

    well now that my boyfriend and I are in the using the bathroom with the other in the room phase (something I NEVER IN A MILLION YEARS thought would happen), there’s really nothing left for me to hide lol.

    I remember when we first started dating, I had a weave and I would never wrap my hair before we went to bed because I wanted to look like a princess…ooo AND I’d leave my makeup on haha. that’s so laughable now. at this point he’s seen me with weave, braids, a Caesar, TWA…etc etc. so yea I will twists my hair up like a member of Bone Thugs & Harmony and put my satin cap on before bed and he doesn’t bat an eye.

    I also used to hide the extent of my facial routine. One day he asked me why I had so many face products in my bathroom and I was like, “oh that stuff is old. I mostly just use soap and moisturizer”. LOL yea right.

  • binks

    Honestly, I don’t have secrecy with my beauty regimen but I wouldn’t go all the way out to expose myself because I consider that my “me” time. But if he catch me doing something to beautify myself that he deems strange I wouldn’t be ashamed. Besides, guys like to front but they have pretty strange beauty habits themselves so…

  • DF

    God I envy you. (I’m single too but wish I could live alone)

  • http://gravatar.com/lovegiraffes onegirl

    I thought a closed bathroom door meant don’t enter. I was going to the bathroom one morning, and it just so happened to be a day when I had to ‘drop a deuce’ while he was sleeping. I finish up, and as I grab the toilet paper, I realize there was a bug/spider (not sure exactly what it is) on the carpet in front of me. Do I wipe or do I kill the bug? I go for the wipe, and as I’m releasing from the wipe, in walks my boyfriend. I scream, the bug moves, and I am paralyzed. He apologized and closed the door. I finished wiping, got in the shower and then I told him about the bug. Worst.Morning.Ever. He just laughs and laughs when he thinks about it. I still cringe to this day.

  • Chillyroad

    That’s really adorable. Bone Thugs…lol.

  • MommieDearest

    LOL!!!!! Gurl, me too. The “trimming of the hedge below” is the only beauty regime I keep hidden from hubby. Everything else is fair game- from plucking my eyebrows and chin-hairs to walking around in a plastic shower camp while deep conditioning my hair.

  • http://bequoted.wordpress.com bequoted

    I have been married for close to four years, and met my husband my junior year of college close to 10 years ago. Although he knows I were make-up I do not allow him to see the process of me concealing this, that and the other.

  • http://gravatar.com/chanela17 chanela17

    puppies ARE extremely adorable aww : )

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