Many celebrities and “well-knowns” are ditching the makeup for an all-natural, no makeup look and being quite public about it. Defying what they call a skewed “public standard of beauty”. There is even a hashtag created for this movement: #nomakeup
I have encountered women who say, “I don’t wear makeup, I’m beautiful just the way I am!“ and to that I say, “Yes, you are!” But for me, and so many others I know, we love our makeup! Its fun, its transformative and in a way, a very personal art form! I like the concept of contours and highlights; putting light-catching shimmer here and there, playing with eye shadow that makes the color of my eyes look more intense and endlessly practicing, and to date, failing with winged eyeliner. Rather than being a conformist act of masking who I really am, or an insecurity with my naked face, I regard it as a personal expression, like a tattoo, only washable. I am totally intrigued by women who can chisel a cheekbone out of nothing but the color brown. That’s an ART! But many in the #nomakeup movement would translate this as not loving what you were given. I respectfully beg to differ. I confess I do appreciate hiding behind a little concealer when I have a break out (usually before family pictures or some sort of social soiree). Is this because I do not love myself? Is it because I am trying to aspire to an unattainable standard of beauty? No, it is because I am not fond of the angry, red third eye in the middle of my forehead. That is all.
Culturally and historically, men and women have done makeup or face painting for centuries for beauty, celebration, war, religion, to ward off diseases and protect from the sun. By the time Queen Cleopatra came to power in the 1st century BC, Egyptian women had at their disposal a whole array of cosmetics, all of which were made from rocks, minerals and plants in the region. Cleopatra used bright green and a deep blue eye shadow with gold-colored pyrite flecks. She darkened her eyebrows and lengthened her eyelashes. She used red ochre, a type of clay colored red by iron oxide for blush and lipstick.