I am back with another round of (Bad) Makeup Advice I’ve heard through the years.
You are too pretty to wear makeup.
Oh this particular saying just burns me up. To be honest, before I started wearing makeup, it didn’t bother me. I didn’t necessarily believe it. But it didn’t make me mad. Once I started being on the receiving end of other’s “well-meaning” advice, well… ahem.
What this really boils down to is… You shouldn’t wear makeup.
They dress that negative criticism up by saying things like:
- You’re too pretty to wear makeup.
- Boys don’t like girls that wear makeup.
- You don’t need to wear makeup.
And that is just a bunch of horse-sense. It is negative, pandering, rude, and so on. 😡 It is a guilt tactic to try to get the person they are criticizing to do what they think they should do.
Sure, some people might use makeup to hide flaws. I cover red spots all the time. But I’m not trying to look like someone different than myself. I’m trying to look like my best self. I cover the red spots so that my best features are more noticeable. My eyes in particular. I also use makeup to try to age myself upward a tiny bit (you know, like teenagers are always accused of doing). Without makeup, my round face and short stature easily can put me, mistakenly, in the barely 18 category. With makeup, I am less likely to get carded because I look a bit older by giving my face less of that fresh face look and thinning out a bit of the curves. People take me a little bit more seriously. I am treated different when I wear makeup.
Why do other people wear makeup?
- Some people wear makeup because they like having a morning routine that gets them ready for the day. Some people drink coffee and eat breakfast. Some people start their day with a workout. Many need that morning shower pick-me-up. And some people see their makeup routine in the same way.
- Makeup can be like armor. Not in the sense of hiding behind the castle turrets armor. More like a battle helmet being put on before thundering the gates! If you feel more confident in your person, you’ll be more confident in your interactions with others. In corporate America, this is important. Especially for women with the whole gender inequality in the work force, and more attractive and put-together women being more likely to be hired and promoted (but still paid less than men for the same qualifications and job).
- Makeup often comes with skin care attached and people care about their skin. They don’t want to look 90 by the time they are 60 so they clean, tone, moisturize, exfoliate. They choose makeup after researching ingredients. They take care to touch their faces in ways that won’t damage their delicate skin. They use makeup with added SPF whenever possible. All in an effort to have clear and healthy skin. Which, quite honestly, is a medical necessity.
- Applying makeup solo is a personal experience. It can be a form of self-care that includes positive thoughts, loving one’s self, or meditation. Or it can just be a few peaceful moments away from the stresses of life.
- Wearing makeup makes a difference in how other people view the wearer. I have personal experience with this (see above). I often hear how people are constantly asked if they are sick when they aren’t wearing makeup. I’ve had that too even though I don’t wear any makeup about 50% of the time. Or the constant “You look like you didn’t sleep last night…” No actually, I just don’t have any concealer on that covers my otherwise natural dark under eye circles, thanks.
- Applying makeup is an art form. It is about expression and color and lines and shadows and light and symmetry and balance. It is all there, just on a different canvas. Many people genuinely use makeup as a creative release. If you haven’t sat down with an eyeshadow palette and tried to design a half dozen or 40 different eye looks with those 12 shades, you won’t understand this. But it is very true.
- It is fun. Applying makeup, buying makeup, browsing makeup, reading about makeup, watching makeup videos… it is a lot of fun. It can be educational, silly, over-the-top, campy, serious, low key, etc. To me, this is the 2nd most important reason people wear makeup. If you aren’t having fun, what is the point?
- We wear makeup because we want to. Here is the most important reason people wear makeup. Because we want to wear it. No one is holding a gun to a tiny kitten in the morning to force us to put on makeup. We aren’t trying to transform from Ogre Fiona to Princess Fiona. It isn’t because we think boys are suddenly going to fall over themselves to speak to us. We aren’t being needy or self-conscious. We want to wear it so we do.
Don’t let anyone talk you out of something you love or make you feel bad about it. Your makeup love doesn’t have to be approved by someone else. You don’t need permission from others and you don’t owe them an explanation. And if you need some backup, here is an article from Psychology Today explaining 5 reasons why people wear makeup.
It is no one’s business if you wear or don’t wear makeup.
Have you ever had someone try to guilt you into not wearing makeup? What did you do?