Beauty, Money and other trifles – Part 1

The general subject of the unit that we are starting today is Beauty, Money and other trifles.

Let's talk about it.

  • Give examples of cosmetic products. Explain the purpose / use of each.
  • Name various brands, firms. How do you decide what brand to choose?
  • Why do so many girls / women buy cosmetics?

Helpful Vocabulary

make up   –   קרם בסיס) איפור)

eye shadow   –   צללית

eyeliner   –   עיפרון לאיפור עיניים

lipstick  –   שפתון

blush-on   –   סומק

moisturizer   –   קרם לחות

cleanser   –   קרם ניקוי   –   חלב פנים

smooth skin   –   עור חלק

wrinkles   –   קמטים

ad   –   מודעה


Getting Ready to Read.

Each of the following sentences introduces a paragraph in the passage you are about to read.
Read the sentences carefully and try to predict the contents of the passage.

  • Experts on beauty in fashion magazines say that if women want to be beautiful, they simply have to work at it.
  • The cosmetics industry is as old as women's interest in beauty.
  • Fashions in cosmetics may change overnight.
  • Cosmetics is an excellent business which grows steadily year after year.
  • Is the cosmetic business a fraud?

Questions to stimulate discussion:

  • What is the subject of the passage? Try to guess.
  • What must women do to look beautiful? Why? Who says so?
  • How old is the cosmetics industry?
  • Do fashions in cosmetics change all of a sudden? How do you know?
  • Is cosmetics a good business?
  • Can we trust experts on cosmetics? What do you instinctively feel?

Before you read the whole passage, make sure you know the meaning of the following words. (Look them up in the dictionary.)







Reading Passage

Read the following passage and then answer the questions that follow.

1. Experts on beauty in fashion magazines say that if women want to look beautiful, they simply have to work at it. They insist that if women study the latest fashions, spend a lot of time and money on fashion and cosmetics, they will most probably improve on what nature has given them. Millions of women all over the world blindly obey the instructions of experts on beauty. They try facials, a variety of make-up, massages, manicures, hairdos, etc., in their endless pursuit of beauty.

2. The cosmetics industry is as old as women's interest in beauty. A make-up kit found in a tomb in Babylonia is the earliest evidence of the use of cosmetics, but many people believe that Eve was actually the first woman who showed an interest in the subject.

3. Fashions in cosmetics may change overnight.  The experts decide whether this year we should all try to look sophisticated or natural: like a career woman or like a shepherd's daughter. As fashions change, dressing tables all over the world are swept clean of all the bottles containing last year's beauty secrets and restocked with products promising the new look.

4. Cosmetics is an excellent business which grows steadily year after year. The population that uses cosmetics ranges from the very rich to the very poor. The rich spend their money in expensive beauty parlors trying out the latest hairdos and make-up. They often spend weeks on health and beauty farms where they pay enormous sums of money for the chance to starve themselves to death. The poor do exactly the same, paying more moderate prices, in humble beauty shops. Concerning diets, those who are not rich probably find it cheaper and more reasonable to starve at home…

5. Is the cosmetics business a fraud? It may not always fill a physical need, but it certainly fills a psychological one. It helps women look better and therefore feel better and function better. It is a promise in a pretty package. 


1.  What should women do in order to improve their natural looks

(paragraph 1)?


2. Beauty demands a lot of effort (paragraph 1) according to:

a. the experts' opinion.

b. the author's opinion.

c. women's opinion.

d. men's opinion.

3. Who or what does the word their in line 7 refer to?


4. The cosmetics industry (paragraph 2) probably began in:

a. the Middle Ages.

b. the garden of Eden.

c. France.

d. Babylonia.

5. Why is Eve mentioned in the second paragraph? 


6. What examples does the author give for the natural look and the sophisticated look (paragraph 3)?

a. The natural look: ——————————————————————–

b. The sophisticated look: ————————————————————

7. Who uses cosmetics (paragraph 4)?


8. Who or what do the words the same in line 22 refer to?


9. The attitude of the author to the cosmetics industry is on the whole 

a. positive

b. negative

c. enthusiastic

d. antagonistic

10. Rearrange the following sentences according to the sequence of ideas in the passage.

a. Changing fashions

b. Beauty means hard work.

c. The author's opinion on cosmetics

d. The history of cosmetics

e. Diets for the rich and the poor

And that's all for today. More texts and suggestions in my next post.

Lea 🙂



כתיבת תגובה