Before I start, if you are looking for an article that demeans people who wear make-up and puts people who don’t wear make-up on a pedestal, then move along. That is not what you will find here. This article will talk about my history with make-up and what led me to stop wearing it. I also want to talk about how there is nothing wrong with wearing make-up, but I would like to share some advice and tips that I discovered along the way for making sure you are doing this for your true self and that you are being caring towards your body and the skin it lives in.
My history with make-up has been up and down. When I was kid, I could not stand make-up or frills or dolls. I was a tomboy for the most part. I liked getting messy, climbing trees, playing with “Alien” movie action figures over Barbie dolls, playing video games. I did a lot that most girls my age would never dream of doing, at least in my neck of the woods. I did not begin getting curious about make-up until my teen years when every other girl was giving me the the degree about not wearing it and how they wanted to try different looks with my face. I eventually gave in; I wore it off and on. Every time I would wear it, I never really felt like myself which added to my low confidence of thinking at the time. I had thought if I truly acted like me that people would dislike me. Because I was a geek and had not met anyone who liked what I did. So, for me, it became more of a cover-up of who I really was. Then, when I began to work and began meeting actual people like me who loved a slew of geeky stuff, I started to not really care about my looks in that way. I completely stopped wearing make-up and began to feel comfortable in my own skin. I still had quite a few low confidence issues going on but it had nothing to do with that aspect of myself anymore. There was a brief period in college when I hit a low point like that again, but it didn’t take me long to come back to who I feel like I truly am. I know that I am a bit of rugged beauty and I am okay with this. I will admit, I will throw on some light BB crème sometimes for really special events or interviews where I know pictures will be taken to cover up my rosacea when it flares up. But in my daily life or at work, I don’t think two licks about it. I wear no make-up whatsoever. I have many friends who wear make-up and I am fine with that. As long as they are staying true to themselves, then I am fine with it. This is what leads me to the next part of this article.
I have met many people who wear make-up. Some do it for cosplay, some for fun, and some just like to wear it because it is their preference, which is all awesome. However, I have also met quite a few who have worn it either to conform to social standards, because they want to fit in, and it is the only thing that gives them confidence either to be who they are or who they think they are or should be. This in my opinion are huge no-no’s. Many people know by know how badly media has come to have a huge impact on our social lives. This includes magazines, television, the Internet and more. The media has over glamorized the need to being this perfect being. Magazines have been known to do it to the point where they use Photoshop to make the people they take pictures of look ultra-fabulous because their looks alone along with the make-up they have already had put on is not enough for their covers. Refer to the video below for an example of what I mean:
So much media these days seem to scream the message “No matter how good you may actually look and no matter what you do, you will never look that fabulous but you can try.” Then those same people slam a random ad that then screams “Here look at this new make-up being worn by the famous so and so. If you buy it, then you can come close to being fabulous like them.” That is the message that I and many others I have met take from that. Also, while the overall message has changed over time; it still sticks with the message you have wear a specific something, be it make-up, skin products or clothing, to be accepted among society. That being you is not enough and it is horrible. This way of thinking leads many people, both young and old, to have low self-esteem and confidence issues. Which in turn, you end up with people that have to fancy themselves up just to go check the mail or go to the convenience store down the street. If you are one of those people, then there is a chance you may need to do a double take of yourself. When you use make-up or other material items as an emotional crutch, it can lead to actually covering up the actual problem at hand. I believe everyone as some point in their lives needs to learn how to physically accept who they are as is. I know that is not an easy task, but when you learn to accept how you are; it can open so many paths for you with the most important path being that of self love. Some people I know that still wear make-up and have accepted who they really are, said they have enjoyed wearing make-up more because they are no longer constricted to worrying about what others will think of them and or worry about what shades are in. They wear the colors they want, they have fun with it and some even treat it more like an accessory than a have to. It does not make them who they are. They are who they are and they use make-up to express who they are or as an add-on to who they are. They use it more like a confidence booster and not a full-on embodiment of their confidence.
Another thing I noticed about many of my friends who wear make-up and have accepted themselves. While they may be no longer concerned what others think of them, they have learned to care more about how they treat their body and the skin that covers it. So, when they do wear make-up, they try to wear stuff that is not harmful to the skin but they also make sure they take extra care if they do wear something that may have a harmful ingredient in it. There are many simple things you can do or ingredients you can keep an eye for to prevent any breakout or skin damage. Let us start with ingredients to keep an eye for. If your make-up has any of the following ingredients, there is a chance you are not doing your skin any favors:
No-No Ingredients (Editorial, 2017):
– Coal Tar
– Ethylene oxide
– Crystalline silica (Or quartz)
Also, make note that some of these ingredients can be found in acne and skin treatments, which is pretty scary. Now this is only a small list of ingredients to watch out for and it can be hard to find make-up without at least one of these ingredients. Another thing to keep in mind is just because a make-up says it is organic, eco, natural, or non-toxic does not really mean anything when it comes to the safety of the make-up because those terms don’t have any kind regulatory meaning when it comes to cosmetics. (Gabillet, 2018)The list below is just some tips that can help prevent and maybe even protect from any really bad skin damage. Disclaimer: I am in no way a doctor of any sorts. These were tips giving to me by friends and beautician friends I know. Now, you may be familiar with most of tips but it doesn’t hurt to be reminded:
Love Tips for the Skin:
– Always wash any make-up off before bed with a warm washcloth or soap and warm water. Heck, even if you don’t wear make-up. Cleaning your face off before bed can really help against any dirt or any other germs that may want to your hurt your skin.
– Wash off your make-up brushes after every use and give them a deep clean once or twice a week depending how often you use them. You may as well be brushing dirt on your face if you don’t clean them and take good care of them.
– Clean/sanitize your cellphone or any other digital items that are near your face or skin. If you are like many people I see these days. There are many people who use their cellphones often and usually have it plastered to their face a lot. Cellphones, headphones/earbuds, and other items like these usually carry a lot of residue or dirt on them from daily use. So, by wiping them daily you can help minimize the amount of dirt that will get on you and cause possible breakouts.
– Give your skin a break. Take a one or two days a week where you can go make-up free for the whole days. There are many make-ups that are known to clog your pores or suffocate the skin which can lead to infections or skin damage. Just like clothes, your skin needs to be given time to air out and breathe.
– Exercise. Yes, I know it is a scary word, but it can do wonders for the skin. Mainly because of how increases blood flow which can help nourish skin cells. Check out this link for how exercise can help with better skin, even for those with acne or eczema problems: https://www.webmd.com/skin-problems-and-treatments/acne/features/exercise#1
– Sleep. Oh, Lovely, beautiful, and restful sleep. Staying up late and binge watching the newest season of your favorite show is always fun, but is it good for you? Probably, not so much. Sleep does wonders for not only your skin but your overall body. If you are given the opportunity to hit the hay early, go for it! Having trouble getting to sleep? Listen to some music, read a book, or do something that will really bore you. I know that works me, lol! Supposedly, 7 to 9 hours is the average amount of sleep we should get. I know in this day and age, it can be hard to do, but your body and skin will be thankful to you when you do.
There are many other tips I can suggest but these are the main ones I believe anyone, make-up or no make-up should keep in mind.
I hope this article was helpful in some ways. Like I said before, I think every person should be allowed to do what they want, but as long they are true to themselves. Society can be a suffocating thing and it can be hard to find where you fit in when it is all around you. It can also turn people on one another, which is what I feel has been happening lately with this whole make-up, no make-up debate. Whatever you do decide, whether to wear make-up or to not wear make-up. Remember it is a choice, and it is a choice for everyone. If you don’t want to wear make-up but meet someone who likes to or vice versa, please remember that it is okay. Do not demean someone for their choice. Spread love, not hate.
P.S. Ever thought about making your own make-up? I found this link while doing my research for this article and checked into the different ingredients used for most the recipes. They are pretty legit and skin friendly. If you’re curious, then check it out: https://lovelovething.com/18-homemade-makeup-recipes/
“Sometimes people are beautiful.
Not in looks.
Not in what they say.
Just in what they are.”
― Markus Zusak
Editorial, C. (2017, Oct. 18). 10 Harmful Side Effects of Makeup. Retrieved from Curejoy: https://www.curejoy.com/content/harmful-side-effects-of-makeup/
Gabillet, A. (2018, Jun. 20). What Happened When I Tried Nontoxic Makeup For 90 Days. Retrieved from Popsugar: https://www.popsugar.com/beauty/Best-Non-Toxic-Makeup-42307799