“No, I don’t wear make up.”
I don’t even remember how we got to the subject, but it somehow stuck with me. I never really thought about it. I’m a woman and I don’t wear make up. I never have. I know that in our society women are expected to look pretty. The moment we walk out the door we are judged by our looks. We get catcalled, we get stared at and there are even those moments that we get grabbed. It’s not something we complain about. We deal with it and move one, because actually taking a moment to stop and think about what happened would be too terrifying. If you really take that moment to stop and think you would never go outside again, because the truth is: It isn’t okay.
As a teenager every girl gets immersed in the world of make up. It’s everywhere. We see it on TV in magazines on the internet, we can’t escape it. The moment of wanting to wear make up has begun. For me that moment never really came. Most of the girls in my school started wearing make up when they were 12 and it’s not like I had no idea what make up was, I was just never that interested. I never really cared for it. Years later it’s still the same. Now I’m 22 years and I can honestly say that I wear no make up at all, like ever. And for a really long time I didn’t really think about it much. Every once in a while when there was a wedding or some random school dance I knew most girls would be worrying about their make up looks, but not me. I knew that most girls would dress up and they would spent hours perfecting their eye-liner and would waste even more time trying to find the right lip-gloss. I’d usually just sleep an extra couple of hours.
After I had this conversation the other day I started thinking that maybe me not wearing make up is somehow weird. And even for a moment it made me feel less pretty. Isn’t it weird that we women always do that? We make ourselves feel imperfect because we don’t fit the norm. And then I started thinking: why don’t I wear make up? As a teenager I was never interested, but I could start wearing it now.
I could, but the problem is, make up is a form of art. When I walk through the make up section in the store I feel overwhelmed. There’s so much and I don’t know how to use any of it. Maybe that’s why girls start wearing make up at such a young age. They have to go through an awkward phase of not knowing what to do and slowly get better. I never went through that phase. For a teenager to not know how to use mascara would be fine, but for an 22 year old it would just be embarrassing. And all of a sudden I found myself in a dilemma. Apparently, wearing make up is somehow linked to being pretty so maybe I should start, but you have to start young or you’ll be too late.
I have worn make up, though. My mom or my sister would just put on the basics, but it just never felt right. It even made me feel uncomfortable. It just wasn’t me. And that’s when the real revelation happened. I don’t wear make up because it makes me feel less like myself. It has nothing to do with me not having gone through my awkward-phase or me wanting to look pretty. It has, however, everything to do with the fact that make up just isn’t for me.
So, why do women wear make up? I truly want to believe that women, and men as well, wear make up not because they want to look pretty to please someone else. I want to believe that women, and men, wear make up because it makes them feel empowered. Wearing make up is a way of feeling confident. That’s what make up SHOULD do. The only difference is, that for me not wearing make up is what does all those things. So why should I change and feel uncomfortable just to fit some norm, just to please someone else? I’d rather make myself happy than spend my entire life worrying about someone else. They will only be a part of my life for a moment, while I’ll have to live with myself for the rest of forever. Why should I change just for someone else’s moment, when I can be myself for the rest of my life?
So, to end this really long post: No, I don’t wear make up and I probably never will, but to all the women and men out there who do wear make up just know that you look fierce. Oh, and your eyebrows are really on fleek.
Have a nice Tuesday.