Rewind many years back to the 7th grade when it all started… the dermatology visits, the various skin treatment trials, the overwhelming pressure of trying to “fit in,” to just be liked. That was the start of it all – when I put on that first bit of makeup in a desperate attempt to cover up. You see, I used to have really bad acne to the point that my face embarrassed me, and I only added to the problem by putting on foundation, powder, blush, anything to hide my flaws.
Did I think it was working? No, clearly it was only doing my skin more harm, but little did I know it was also doing my self esteem harm too…
Now I am not here to put to shame those girls who love using makeup and love the idea of getting themselves all dolled up. No – what I am here to say is:
Ask yourself, “why do I wear makeup?”
Is it because you purely enjoy it or is it because there is something you are trying to hide?
Did makeup make me more confident? Yes. Did makeup make me feel more beautiful? Yes. But makeup also made me feel more insecure and hateful towards my own natural beauty. Makeup put a blindfold on my eyes that no longer made it possible for me to see my true beauty without all the cover ups.
How could I learn to love and accept my flaws if I constantly caked on makeup to cover it up?
In this society, contour makeup tutorial videos from girls as young as 10 years old all the way up to adults can be found almost anywhere on Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, you name it, showing the world how they transformed themselves to resemble a literal doll. Most of the time the videos show two completely different people; they result in someone that doesn’t look anything like the person at the start of the video.
How then could I find beauty in the way God made me if, from the moment I began to feel insecure, society instantly encouraged me to cover up and try to hide it? The more and more I used foundation and powder to cover up my bad skin, the worse and worse I felt about myself when all of that came off at the end of the day. The lower my self-confidence was with my natural beauty. I actually couldn’t even see it. I couldn’t get myself to see the natural beauty God placed in me because my perception of beauty was so far displaced by society and this culture of “more is better.” More makeup. More glam. The expectation to hide the real you because flawless is what society craves…
I couldn’t take it anymore. If I wanted something to change and I wanted a healthy self-image, I had to stop covering up. I had to face myself day in and day out. I had to see my reflection for all that it really was. Makeup was only distorting that reflection for me.
It’s been these years of not wiping on foundation every morning that have helped me to grow to accept the skin I was born in, and I have truly found beauty in my own skin. My own body. The way I wake up in the morning and go to bed every night. Not only does it feel way better and more breathable without makeup, but it is the better option for me.
That is why I refuse to wear any makeup that is meant to cover up my flaws. Flaws that make up who I am today. Flaws that tell a story of strength and perseverance. Not because I think all forms of makeup are bad, but because I think it is worth taking a closer look into the motives behind wearing such makeup.
Yes there are situations where I may end up doing my makeup once again, like my wedding day, but as for right now, makeup is as far removed from my life as middle school (thank goodness).