Snake Oil

“Your basic facial cleanser will only literally remove the top layer of dirt,” she gave me what I can only describe as a plastic smile.

I responded with a sour one, her punishment for using the word “literally.”

“After all,” she continued, “you don’t want nasty clogged pores, do you?”

“At my age? That’s the least of my worries.”

She faltered for a second but rallied magnificently. “It’s never too late to change your beauty regime. After all, you only reap what you sow.”

“I smoked for twenty years and I work outdoors.”

“But our new improved formula has a higher percentage of barmecide than any other product on the market.” She paused dramatically. “It will remove ten times the grime—”

“So does soap and water.”

She stared me into silence and then leaned forward so I could smell her minty fresh breath. “Never, ever use soap! It builds up and stops your skin from breathing.”

“I have lungs for that job.”

“Not with all that smoking.” Her eyes narrowed and the plastic smile melted into a sneer. “But, if you will just shut up and listen, we can help turn back time.”

I snorted and earned a brittle frown.

She waved a sheaf of papers at me. “Our market research was a total success and led to universal acclaim. All the women reported improved tone and fewer wrinkles.”

That caught my attention. “Really?”

“Within a week according to the test groups.”

“I’ll take four bottles.” I reached for my handbag. “What did you say this stuff was called again?”

“L’Huile de Serpent.”

Written using these daily prompts:
Fandango’s One-Word Challenge (basic)
Ragtag Daily Prompt (cleanser)
Three Things Challenge (build, reap, late)
The Daily Spur (percentage),
Word of the Day Challenge (barmecide)
Your Daily Word Prompt (acclaim)

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