Thursday, 4 October 2012

The Great Make Up Debate. When enough is too much.

Firstly, let me apologise if this post becomes a crazed rant. I was surprised by how strongly I felt about this topic before I considered this post.  

Daytime Chic versus  Full on Glamathon.

I read an interesting forum post the other day, discussing varying amounts of make up in the work place. The reactions to this post really got me thinking, make up can be an emotive topic. Where some go cold at the thought of being caught bare faced, others feel uncomfortably over done with more than a sweep of mascara.
It'll come as no surprise to you that I love a bit of make up, I take pleasure in its application. I use it to create a mood or look that will help me feel ready for whatever I'm faced with that day, be it a stressful shift at work or chores with my son.
I would love to work in an environment where I could rock falsies and a statement lip every day but sadly it would not only be unprofessional but also pose a health hazard. This doesn't mean I go to work bare faced, far from it. but it does mean I realise that not all looks can be appropriate on all occasions.

I like Lipstick,  I have a degree. 

I read a comment from a girl who had been judged as a 'bimbo' because she wears a full face in an office where her colleagues favour a barely there approach, this made her uncomfortable and, quite rightly, offended. The post went on to discuss the trend for subtly in everyday make up. Now don't get me wrong, applying make up to look like you're bare faced is a real skill, and there's definitely a place for it. However, sometimes a girl just needs to feel made up. The amount or style of make up a person wears to work should by no means alter the way in which a women a viewed as it certainly doesn't impact on how capable she is at doing her job.
Why shouldn't this girl wear what makes her feel confident and beautiful. Is her penchant for lipstick not just a harmless expression of her personality?  For goodness sake, its the 21st century, Women are not only empowered, but have created a beauty industry worth close to £15billion here in the UK. If an intelligent woman wishes to go all out with her new red lipstick, nobody should care! This outdated attitude that a love of noticable make up somehow detracts from a persons capabilities angers me so much! Women in particular are so quick to judge other women based on the superficial. So much for sisterhood! This story made me examine how people judge me on my make up habits. Two situations came to mind.

Does my face look big in this?

 I took my son to  a baby group where one of the other mum's commented on how organised I must be to be able to get out of the house fully made up in the morning. She wished she had the 'time and motivation' to get 'glammed up' for the sake of it. I didn't really know how to take this comment as I prioritise time to do my face just like I do showering, ok its often means sacrificing blow drying my hair but that's my beauty hierarchy for you!
The next time somebody commented on my make up in a way that made me feel uncomfortable was in the supermarket. I bumped into an old friend who asked where I was off to, when I replied I was just shopping she implied I'd gone to a lot of 'effort' for a trip to the shops. But why shouldn't I go to the shops feeling my best? 

Beauty is in the eye of the brush holder.

Now due to having to wear super subtle looks for work I love to play around with colour, texture and styles when I'm off duty. To me applying make up is a kind of therapy, its a hobby and I'll indulge myself whenever I get the chance. Its my creative outlet, I make no apology for it.
 The majority of my colleagues wear very little make up but I've never felt them judging my full coverage base or smirking when my black eye liner has crept closer to my lips than my eyes. Yes I have to tweak and touch up throughout the day but this is a process that allows me to refocus and return from my break feeling rested and more together.
In a society that is saturated by media images of celebrities and articles telling women how they should aspire to look, our collective self esteem is suffering. Its the transformative abilities of make up, not only visually but psychological too that fascinates me. Make up can hide a multitude of flaws, enhance natural beauty drawing attention away from areas that make us feel self conscious. We can create different persona's in the way we wear our cosmetics. I'm all in favour of anything that can make a woman feel good about herself.

No comments:

Post a Comment