Makeup: how I really feel

Ok, fine, I haven’t figured out exactly how I really feel about makeup. I struggle with it like I do with several things.

On the one hand: ooh, look how it makes me not shiny, and under my eyes is less blue, and dude! You can see my eyelashes now!

On the other hand, it’s time-consuming, it costs money (sometimes a lot!), it takes time to remove it. Or it doesn’t, and it ends up all over your pillowcase.

And then there are the other issues I have with it. Why is it expected in our culture (with which I have many, many beefs that I don’t wanna get into today) that women should paint their faces to go out in public? What is that about? But men don’t have to. WHYYY???

Sometimes I want to wear makeup. Other times not. It kind of goes in phases. I do tend to wear it if I think my picture is going to be taken. I often wear it when I feel like I’m supposed to look professional. What the heck is so wrong with my face–the one that God made with the colors that He made it–that I have to paint it to look professional? To look “put together”? To be taken seriously? Like, I’m just supposed to be wearing sweat pants and a hoodie if I go out with no makeup? It disgusts me. And yet I give in to this cultural expectation. Because it’s pretty. I do like pretty. But what does that say about how I feel about my natural face in all its blue, shiny, no-eyelashes glory?

When I used to wear makeup once in a blue moon, all it took was one day of wearing it for people–like, all the people–to go, “Oh, Jennifer, you look so pretty today!” Um, thanks. You mean, now that you can’t see my actual face? Ouch. I know they meant well and were complimenting me…or at least my ability to camouflage my visage, but I still didn’t like it. The converse is true for everyday makeup-wearers. One day without any on, and everybody will go, “Honey, are you ok? You look awful!” Why would you say that?! That is her face you are talking about!!

All of this is still swirling around in my head, and I haven’t really landed in a completely anti-makeup camp or anything, but it gives me pause. I don’t want to wear makeup out of societal pressure. And nor should you. Not to say you shouldn’t wear it. I just think we should all consider our reasons for wearing it. And we should all consider how our words and attitudes about the state of women’s faces affect the way they feel about themselves. Men, this definitely includes you.

And for the record, if you see me with or without makeup, you can tell me that I look pretty. Just do two things for me: try not to sound surprised, and don’t add “today.” Thanks.

 

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