Saturday, 25 May 2013

Thoughts: My Naked Face

One of my favourite Dutch beautybloggers, Mascha from, thought of a great initiative. She implored all of her readers to upload their faces without makeup on their social media accounts such as Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. Of course, she did so herself as well. She had this idea because she noticed that although she doesn't mind going bare herself, lots of her readers are afraid of going anywhere without makeup on. This is why she thought it would be cool if a lot of girls went bare faced on this particular day, so that we can show everyone that we feel beautiful! With or without makeup.

I thought this was a great idea. I remember growing up and knowing nothing about makeup, I thought that every pretty and popular girl in highschool looked like that naturally. Of course I knew they wore something, but because I was quite clueless I couldn't really figure out what. It's wonderful to know what makeup can do, but if you're not aware of that and you see all those perfect looking girls, it might make you feel a bit insecure. At least, I know I did..

I think the media also really doesn't help with this, as it preys on our insecurity. In all sorts of  magazines, tv-series and billboards we are  confronted with those beautiful women who seem effortlessly gorgeous, and if you don't know which tricks the makeup artists, photographer and editers use it might get you down a bit. You might forget that that's not what they actually look like. That it's the good lighting, airbrushing, fabulous makeup application and more airbrushing that makes the people that we see in magazines look superhumanly perfect. It's not a realistic goal to strive for, and yet many of us do so because we feel an inner obligation to be just like the models in magazines. Because they are presented as the epitome of beauty and perfection and they make us believe that to be like them we have to buy the product that they're advertising. Be it clothes, perfume or makeup.

I think it's exceptionally funny when you can actually SEE the false lashes. Come on Maybelline, who do you think
you're fooling? 

We musn't forget that advertisements as a whole, especially the ones directed to women, deliberately try to make us feel bad about our appearance just so that we are more likely to buy their stuff. It's just very clever marketing. 'Buy this cream to get rid of your cellulite!' 'This mascara will make your lashes look as long as the obviously false lashes we put on the model!' 'This foundation will make your skin look as flawless as if we've Smart Blurred it for you!' 'You are not good enough the way you are, you must be better! But without the Photoshop and the trickery, because that's what we do already.'

It's what happens, but it's not really fair is it? We are made to feel insecure about every blemish, every wrinkle, every pore and every feature about us that could earn them money, and it's very easy to subconsciously let those advertisments affect you even if you don't think they have. They might make you judge other people a lot harsher because they don't meet the standard that's been put in your head, or they make you more self conscious about your own 'shortcomings'. This aggravates me so much because I see the results of this marketing strategy every day in so many women, even in myself and I definitely should know better because I know about all the tricks they use.

Bare faced VS Full face of makeup. Aaaand suddenly I have eyebrows.

Don't get me wrong, I love playing with makeup. I really do. I love how different types of applications can change my whole look completely, I love how creative and artistic it is. For some people, it's a way to make them feel more beautiful or to give them more confidence, and that's fine as well. I feel like I look a bit 'naked' without makeup, a bit tired, a bit younger and a bit more worn out. My made up face feels more 'me', because it's the version of me that I created myself. I don't think I look ugly though, just different. I also don't feel ashamed to go outside without, I have done so on many occasions. I am most certainly not ashamed to share my bare face with the whole world, and I hope you aren't either.

You are probably a lot more beautiful than you think you are, and don't let anyone tell you any differently. Buy makeup because you want to, because it makes you feel fabulous and you enjoy it. That's what it's for! Don't for a second believe that what they show you in the magazines and commercials is even remotely realistic. They are cheaters and liars. They have to be, or otherwise they'd never sell as much as they do. Remember that everything has been edited, everything in that picture or ad has been controlled to such a degree that no-one can top that, except perhaps a different company with a different commercial. You don't have to be like everybody else, you don't have to strive to be perfect. You're you, and that's even better.

So dress up if that's your thing, wear makeup if that's your thing. But do it because it makes you feel like you're being yourself and you feel awesome doing it. I dye my hair red because I think it suits me, I wear makeup because I enjoy it hugely and I love beauty products, but I see through the utterly disgraceful lies as well. I won't let anyone tell me that the way I want to look is wrong, and I hope that you won't either. I'm not saying it's not okay to be insecure. Of course it is, everyone has their insecurities and that's only human.

But don't let the culture we live in dictate what you should consider beautiful and make you afraid to go outside with the face you were born with. Recognise what influences from outside try to do to you and why. Understand that those ads are only constructed like that because companies want to sell their products, and making us feel bad about our appearance is a popular and succesful tactic that has worked for decades upon decades. Realise that they are selling an image of impossible beauty to us so that we use their products in the hopes of reaching a goal that can never be reached. Don't buy into this crap and make your own decisions. That is all.

I hope you have a spectacular Saturday. =)