A Commentary on Makeup

“Hi, I wear makeup everyday.”
Think about how you’d respond to the girl who is saying that.

That girl would be me.

And no, this statement is not a confession or an apology, though if I ever said this to my friends, I’d feel a little more than self-conscious, because I guarantee you 75% of them would judge me.

Why is there this strong stigma against makeup? I shouldn’t be self-conscious at all. Here is the truth – no fabrications or exaggerations: I wear makeup as a way of re-inventing and expressing myself. So, dear men, I’m sorry but I don’t wear makeup to get your attention, and dear capitalism, I don’t wear makeup because I am a victim of your industry as a consumer. Please do not impose these judgments on me, that I am some kind of man-pleasing shopaholic with no actual self-confidence – I buy makeup probably four times a year, in small quantities, I buy clothing even less often, so just because I buy material goods doesn’t mean I’m a materialistic person addicted to products. Note the difference. And of course, I buy all products exclusively for myself, not for the happiness and well-being of others.

Personally, I think makeup is special because it brings out the artist in me that I never could bring out on the canvas, or the sketch-board. Visual art was always my weak point (even now I’m disappointed at my lack of artistic skill), even though I was in love with it. My middle school art teachers shook their heads at my drawings and self-portraits until I just gave up on the idea of being a freelance artist. Makeup, however, revitalized that innate passion within me.

As soon as I mastered the basics – how to apply BB cream and foundation without making my face look like a powdered cake, how to precisely line my eyes with liquid liner, and what not – I discovered color: Whipped Caviar. Siren. Corail Aquatique. Can you guess what these names are referring to? Not poems, or artworks, no. They are the names of different lipsticks colors. Siren is a purple-black color, dangerous and seductive, Whipped Caviar is a delicate and plump nude, Corail Aquatique a glossy, springtime coral. Looking at these color choices, I felt like an artist – except the canvas was my face. In tenth grade, I then got introduced to Asian cosmetics – they were a whole new palette of colors altogether. My first lipstick was from Etude House, a Korean cosmetic brand geared towards younger girls. The sheer orange lipstick miraculously suited my yellow skin tone and brightened my face up. I picked out an orange eye shadow to match and, for once, the warm color didn’t make my eyes look swollen – it made me look awake and fresh. Isn’t that fascinating – that even though the Korean orange eye-shadow and American orange eye-shadow looked almost the same, one made me look good and the other made me look half-dead? This opened my eyes (pun not intended) to the dramatic effects of just a minute color change.

Perhaps you now get why I don’t think anyone has the right to tell me I can’t add that dusty rose blush onto my cheeks to warm me up as winter creeps in. I won’t let anyone take away the glittering blue I sweep onto my eyelids if I feel extra romantic one day. And I don’t reserve makeup for special occasions – my makeup is almost like a way of journaling my mood through colors – it is the release of the artist inside me. So obviously, it’s a bit awkward if an artist leaves her canvas blank and devoid of the vigor of her life. Don’t encourage me to go bare faced, au naturel, or whatever. With the exception of letting my skin have a break over vacation, that is simply not an option for me. Also, I can write about makeup on my blog – that doesn’t make me a materialistic, superficial girl. In fact, it’s my way of combating capitalism in a time period when it is simply useless to run away from this consumer system: I let other people know what products to buy for what they are actually worth it, instead of what they are advertised to be.

Thus ends my rants on makeup.

If you feel the way I do, share this. Reblog it. Let the world know that you are the proud makeup blogger or wearer you are. 


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