Although I didn’t start wearing makeup until the end of my high school days, I definitely became dependent on it quickly. At first I wore it because I loved how it covered my sunspots, and made my face less plain. After some time though, I was afraid to take it off. It seemed like I had been lying to those around me, and going without would unravel my lie. People would know I didn’t always look cute, I didn’t always have cute blushing cheeks, and I didn’t always get enough sleep.
Washing my makeup off every night before bed really showed me the difference in the ‘real me’ and the me I wanted to let the world see. Makeup me was a lot less scary than the real me.
Of course you know the rest of my story. I fell in love & started traveling the country in a Peterbilt. Which had some unexpected changes I wasn’t expecting, one of which was doing my hair and makeup. At first I didn’t have a good mirror with the right lighting. I went without makeup every few days, and I felt awful because of it. Every time I stepped out of the truck I tried to go unnoticed. I didn’t want people to see my wrinkles, sun spots, or tired eyes. I wanted to apologize to everyone I met for how I looked.
After some time though, I realized most people have seen hundreds if not thousands of people in their lives. I started to comprehend that I was one of many, and most people will forget my face within minutes of seeing me. It didn’t matter what they thought of me, because they aren’t important to me, and I’m not significant to them. My shame began to fade, and my confidence grew. I went without makeup more often because of it.
I started to notice that many others went without makeup (especially in the western, rural areas). Not only that, I thought they looked great. The men looked tougher, and the women seemed wiser.
I started to see some those characteristics mildly in my own face after a while. People learn pieces of my story, without me even moving my lips. I started to appreciate myself more, and my confidence became more so. I didn’t feel the need to apologize for how I look. I felt comfortable, and brave, in my own skin.
I don’t expect what I’ve just said to radically change the way you view yourself, or makeup. I do hope you find the courage to go bare faced more, until you develop confidence, and appreciation for your skin. It really is a mental and emotional trip that you’re not expecting to take.
I’m not criticizing those who wear makeup daily (kudos to you for the extra effort you put in!). However, I hope you wear it because you genuinely want to, not out of obligation, or guilt. You’re beautiful, and unique, and you should embrace that.
What’s your relationship with makeup? Do you have a personal story with or without it? As always, thank you for reading!