In the past few months, I have noticed the “natural beauty” trend growing. It started with celebrities tweeting photos of themselves sans makeup, almost as if to say, “look at me. I am woman without makeup. Hear me roar.” Even 44-year-old actress Jennifer Aniston went bare faced for an Instagram photo with her longtime hair stylist Chris McMillan. “#Bestfriends, #NoMakeup, #GirlTime,” McMillan wrote as a caption. (Source: thedailynews.com)
And recently the women of The Talk went bare faced for the season premier of the third season of their talk show, creating a lot of hype around “not hiding who you are”. Or, perhaps it was just a plain old fashioned PR stunt?
I will be the first to admit, that I loved it! All of it! It was nice to know and SEE that under “all that make-up”, these women that we hold up high on the throne of “what a woman should look like”, are just like you and me. They DO have wrinkles, spots and bags under their eyes and they DO have bad hair days! There is something about all of this “women au naturale” that made me feel good about myself. Like all of a sudden, we were all on the same level… as women. A nice feeling and good for my self-esteem.
Then there was Hillary Clinton’s makeup-free diplomacy. This caused my warm feelings about the “No Makeup Movement” to to shift . Instead of feeling good about myself, I felt sorry….for myself and women everywhere. During a business trip to Bangladesh, China and India, the US Secretary Of State was scrutinized for appearing less than primped and primed, or in other words, she “forgot her makeup”. As if she doesn’t have more pressing matters to think about such as Iranian oil imports, nuclear weapons programs and human rights issues. Humph! The problem here is the implication that wearing makeup is understood as an obligation for women. Sure, celebs can do as they please. Snapping an Instagram of their bare faces is accepted, shared, criticized and celebrated. They are artists after all, so it’s all good. But, why are women in positions of power picked apart when facing the world without their “war paint”? When does it stop mattering? Should it even matter?
Here is how Hillary responded to all the criticism:
“I feel so relieved to be at the stage I’m at in my life right now. Because you know if I want to wear my glasses I’m wearing my glasses. If I want to wear my hair back I’m pulling my hair back. You know at some point it’s just not something that deserves a lot of time and attention. If others want to worry about it, I’ll let them do the worrying for a change.” (Source Blisstree.com)
So where does that leave me and my thoughts on the matter? I am not a celebrity and I am not a Secretary Of State. What I am is a woman with choices and that is something most of us have in common. We can choose to wear makeup, when, where, how much, and what kind. Those are OUR choices. I choose to wear mineral make-up because a) I feel confidence in enhancing my features, and b) I feel good about using products that are good for my skin. I am not hiding my face, I am celebrating my face.
Does watching this video gross me out or make me feel conscious of the waste of everyday life? Not at all. I put on make-up almost every day and I wash my face every day. The idea of wearing 365 days worth of makeup all at once is a bit silly in my opinion. What is this supposed to prove anyway?
The tagline for this video is “Natural Beauty is so much better ;-)”. I think how you look at yourself and how you see yourself as beautiful is “so much better”. Loving yourself is “so much better”, and I don’t think it really matters how you arrive at that realization, as long as you are not hurting others or yourself. We all have a role to play in making this world a better place and it has nothing to do with makeup.
So what is the lesson of this video? Wash your face every night? Don’t wear 365 days worth of makeup all in one go? Makeup is not natural? What do you think?
Beauty Editor, The Etiket Insider