Invincible vs Invisible: The power of makeup

14 February 2019

One of the first things I do on a morning is reach for my foundation. If I’m running out of foundation and don’t have time to get to a department store to pick up a new one, it’s like a military operation precisely planning out how much I can use each day until I stock up. And don’t even get me started on concealer. According to a study by Holland & Barrett, increasing numbers women are turning away from a face full of foundation and going au naturel instead. Hence the rise of barely there make up brands such as glossier. I love a good makeup free day because every once and a while your skin needs a break and space to breathe, but I’m not going to lie I would usually spend such day in my PJs watching Netflix and chilling.

Don’t get me wrong, I can happily go without makeup, it’s not a confidence thing and I love taking the time to really look after my skin. I can’t even draw a straight eyeliner line, so I’ve never been too into my makeup trends all I aim to do is use makeup to hide those late nights and also bring out my personality (because no one loves a bold lip as much as me). However, I was recently out shopping in my local area absolutely loving life in my naked skin but I couldn’t help but notice feeling slightly invisible. It took me a while to ascertain whether this was an internal batttle I was fighting myself i.e. not being happy in my own skin or whether I had become so conditioned by the images of women in magazines and on TV looking perfect all the time that I felt I had to look like this, and felt inadequate if I looked anything less. I concluded on the latter. Another thing is the ‘natural barely there makeup, but in reality it takes lots of hours of work’ look. Take Kim Kardashian for example. I was once in a conversation where someone stated they liked “natural” women like Kim Kardashian. Okay.....this person obviously didn’t realise the natural pictures they see of Kimmy K were as a result of being sat in the makeup chair for hours and a whizz being sat in a photoshop editing chair for hours.

Okay yes, I don’t feel 100% without my Kat Von D lock it in foundation, but it’s not at the point where I feel insecure. Yes, some days I may look washed out, exhausted and have an uneven complexion without my YSL Touché Elcart concealer, but I never thought I depended on makeup that much to give me more confidence. And thankfully, I (currently) don’t. But I did notice that others perceived me differently which made me aware of the effects of makeup. And when people perceive me differently I then behave differently. Maybe I just happened to go shopping on one the busiest days of the year. Or maybe it’s just in the area I live in but in my two little experiments of going out shopping when I had a full face of makeup vs going out bare faced, people do not give you the time of day when you’re bare faced.

Makeup and our body image is less about how we see ourselves in the mirror but more about how we think people perceive us. When I walk around my local area without make-up I feel people see me as dowdy, boring and like I wasn’t worthy of their time. Which, I would like to point out is not the case for me or females that don’t wear makeup. When you compare this to having doors held open for you, people complimenting you in the street etc. etc. The power of mascara and concealer is unreal! And it’s sad.

Back to my personal journey. One thing I can say that with time, it gets better. Compared to where I was 18 or 19 years old, you would never have seen me leaving the house without a full face of (badly done) makeup. Now I’m getting used to it (someone would still argue badly done makeup). Yes it’s always a bit nerve wracking when someone sees you without makeup for the first time, but it gets better over time as you become more comfortable with how that person reacts to your natural self. And let’s be honest, the clear skin benefits are more than enough to keep me makeup free for a long time.

Right now I’m in a good place with makeup. Admittedly I struggled throughout my teenage years but now I’ve hit the perfect balance - the sweet spot as some may call it. A bit of makeup gives me the confidence to know that I take pleasure in how I look. However, I can also go out without makeup and not really care. If we’re being honest, I secretly long for those days. I take the stance that skincare is much more important than makeup. And it’s all about feeling comfortable in your skin.

Do you feel invincible with makeup or invisible without?

Outfit details

Jumper - Femme Luxe Finery (gifted) 
Skirt - F&F 
Jumper - A random shop in Manchester 

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