by Emma Plant
|A makeup-free Gisele Bundchen|
The article in September’s Cleo observes makeup addiction and the ill effect it can have on a women’s right to esteem. This is not new gospel to any western lady – has any woman ever fist-pumped the air in celebration of an addiction to anything? To the writer’s credit, the feature provides strategies for liberating yourself from this addiction; emancipating the necessity for value add-ons to our faces (add-ons we ultimately begin to think of as our "normal faces").
‘Makeup free Mondays’ is the initiative suggested to re-route painted faces to healthy, naked, self-perceptions. One avid Cleo reader road tested ‘Makeup free Mondays ‘(MFM) for one month in a bid to tone down her 7-day-a-week habit. After a few lofty temptations (can we blame a girl for feeling under groomed in an office without concealer?), said test-subject cited success on all fronts: psychological, physical and social. Hurrah!
Even while in the Amazon rainforest, wearing the dirtiest of clothing, with a month’s worth of insect repellent entering my bloodstream and no hot shower in sight, I would put mascara on. Perplexed? It doesn’t make sense. Why would I bask in the freedom of not washing my hair for a month ( I had read it is good to let the natural oils build up – wrong), and then need to define my lashes? It really is dim.
Maybe this inane addiction is due to the fact that I am wary of the tips of my lashes going blonde, or it could date back to an impromptu dig someone had at me as a tween. I verbatim remember Jenny Jetblacklashes (obv. not her real name) saying, “Your eyelashes get lighter on the ends, don’t they? It makes them look really, really short.” Yes, Jenny, they are lighter on the ends, and they do look incredibly mannish and stumpy.
Really, Jenny was just confirming something I already thought about myself through comparison to others. We see and judge visual stimuli constantly. Unfortunately, knowing this means we feel our insecurities all the more. And, eyelashes are only the start for me: I have not even touched on my complexes a propos freckles and forehead size.
The notion of perceiving our made up faces as our normal faces, carries more weight than first appears; as do those lingering insecurities we are so stealthy about covering up. How bizarre to think that something that washes off in the daily shower is who we really are. Despite it only being a meagre one-day initiative, we think MFM is a small but mighty concept that will yield nothing but wholesome returns. A big unanimous ‘yippee!’ for perfectly flawed faces uniting.
Emma @ Girl With a Satchel