Blog Update!
For those of you not following me on Facebook, as of the Summer of 2019 I've moved to Central WA, to a tiny mountain town of less than 1,000 people.

I will be covering my exploits here in the Cascades, as I try to further reduce my impact on the environment. With the same attitude, just at a higher altitude!

Monday, July 14, 2008

Fighting the beauty ideal

America FerreraThe last couple of days I've been toodling about town without makeup. Maybe because it's summer and I'm not going to work for a while, but it just seems dumb to bother getting all dolled up to hang out at the cancer clinic. One thing that I've noticed is that, after getting over the initial shock of not seeing myself in makeup, I look just as good without it, just different.

I started wearing more makeup when I briefly lived in Southern California mostly because everyone else wore a lot and I felt really under-dressed in comparison. The beauty standard there is quite different than Seattle and the pressure to pay attention to your appearance non-stop is oppressive. For the most part, I generally wear noticeable makeup only when going out on the town which happens, oh, once a year. In other words, I don't wear much makeup or, at least, it doesn't look like I wear much makeup.

Roselyn SanchezSkimming it down is liberating. I save an extra 5 minutes and since I'm just letting my hair air dry, there's another 10 minutes in the morning. It strikes me as ridiculous those women who spend an hour doing their hair every morning. I'd rather be doing something else, but I'm sure some women can point to me and say that they'd rather be spending the extra 15 minutes every day doing something else. So, it's all relative.

There are some women who, admittedly, look better with makeup than without, but the majority of celebrities are trapped by the same beauty ideal, even though they look beautiful without makeup.

Eva MendesSo, who is driving this standard? Industry, other women, men or a combination of them all? Is it because it's what we expect women to look like that we set these ideals? Or are the red lips and rimmed eyes some evolutionary throwback that stimulates some part of our primate brain that signals beauty?

For the women reading this post, do you wear makeup and, if so, do you feel better with it on? Do you feel ugly without makeup or is there one or two things that you absolutely have to wear in order to go out in public? For the men (and I know you won't answer but I'll try anyway), do you prefer your significant other or just women in general to wear makeup?

If it's really just industry driving this, why are we willing to spend thousands of dollars on beauty products and potentially poisoning ourselves with chemicals just to achieve some arbitrary "look" when, in fact, no one cares? If we really are programmed to respond to this artifice, can we ever escape it? I'd like to hear the opinions of those who didn't grow up under this beauty rubric... if any still exist.


Delora said...

99% of the time I don't wear it (even to my professional job). When I do, I feel self-conscious that something is blended unevenly or that something will smear. I also tend to touch my face more when wearing makeup - which doesn't help my skin OR with keeping the makeup in place!

I figure that so long as I'm performing my job well, my boss shouldn't care whether or not it looks like I have a flawless complexion. However, I'm still in my late 20's, so we'll see if I feel different in another 10-15 years. I'm betting that I won't.

ruchi said...

I wear a little eye-liner and lip gloss most days. That's about it though. It's honestly barely noticeable. I think the eye-liner makes my eyes look just a little brighter, and the lip gloss, aside from keeping my lips moist, makes my lips just a bit pinker. And it takes me less than a minute to apply.

I also frequently go without makeup. I don't really do my hair much either. I tend to just throw it in a ponytail. Sometimes, I wish I cared more, and that I would do a better job grooming myself. Mostly because of my job. I am 29 but I look like I'm 19, and I think if I wore more make-up, and wore my hair in a more professional manner, I might look older and thus get taken more seriously. But ... ultimately, I am LAZY. And I would rather sleep than do my hair.

Gretchen said...

I'm 36 and I have never really worn makeup. Not even too much in college or high school, except when going out with a guy or somewhere special. I am aware, however, that this is because I have been blessed with nice skin and young features. If my skin were pocked or uneven I would probably wear makeup more often just because it would make me feel more comfortable about myself.

The same can be said about my body, though. I have a NASTY stomach (it was always my problem area and 4 pregnancies didn't help the matter) so whenever we go out somewhere I never leave the house without support undergarments on. I hide my belly at all costs. That's what helps me feel comfortable about myself.

I hope the media starts turning more in favor of women who actually look their age. Like Jamie Lee Curtis. And Meryl Streep. Why should a woman look younger than she actually is? I am blessed to have a husband that tells me, "I didn't marry you for how you look." He loves my insides, which I have to admit, I am pretty okay with.

Robj98168 said...

I quit wearing makeup because it made me look like this! Seriuosly though, I think you gals think to much about your looks. It would be nice if everyone looked like angelina and brad, but that aint very realistic. I say keep it natural gals- Your skin will thank you!

Samantha said...

I'm 22 and have never bothered with makeup. I never wear it, and to be completely honest, I don't even know HOW to apply it. The few times that I've let friends put makeup on me, I just think it looks silly/bad. Plus add to that the fact that I look like I'm 15/16, and there's absolutely no reason on this earth to bother.

Makeup rarely, and I reiterate rarely, makes anyone look better--unless you have a professional makeup artist applying it. Most women are like myself in that they really don't know how to properly apply makeup, but they somehow think they do. They don't. They just end up looking worse than they would if they just went without it. Then you have what I like to call the "cake faces"--women who wear five pounds of makeup, and foundation so thick it looks like frosting on a cake... And often, I wonder whether or not they actually have mirrors in their homes.

Plus, makeup is just so expensive. I have WAY better things to spend my money on.

knutty knitter said...

Never have worn make up except to sister's wedding about 20 years back. I did wear some eyeshadow and lippy in the 70s (only to the odd dance about 3 times a year) but I'm allergic to it so decided it was more bother than it was worth. When the skin peels off your lips you know its time to stop :) I don't dye the white out of my hair either...I earned that!

viv in nz

Jenette said...

I dont wear it except when going out somewhere special. So twice a year (or so) I break out the lipstick and eyeshadow.

knittinandnoodlin said...

I used to wear makeup and care about trying different colors and stuff, but lately I've only been using a bit of organic tinted moisturizer, blush, and mascara. It is amazing how much nicer my skin is! I also stopped coloring my hair a couple of months ago, because the idea of continuing to soak up all of those nasty chemicals started to gross me out.

*shrug* I guess it took me being comfortable in my own skin to get to the point where I didn't feel a need to put on a mask every day. Maybe the problem isn't a marketing thing or a societal expectation is merely a self-confidence issue.

Burbanmom said...

I used to wear makeup all the time (I have rosacea which means red, blotchy skin - plus I'm a pasty-white Irish girl). Then I learned about all the nasty chemicals in the stuff. I'm now down to just mascara for my beady little eyes and a little lip gloss.

And nobody has told me I look nasty yet. :-)

The thing I love about not wearing makeup is that I don't get that gross, greasy, cakey feeling halfway through the day. Also? When I DO bother to get all dolled up for a night out, I feel positively GORGEOUS compared to my day-to-day self! :-)

My thoughts - save it for when it really matters. Which is almost never.

Anonymous said...

I've never worn it except as part of a costume, and one or two times where well-meaning friends convinced me to let them put it on me. I will often wear small amounts of perfume when I'm not around people who might be sensitive to it, but that's more as portable aromatherapy than as an attempt to make me smell different.

Debby Brown said...

I am 39 and look about 25 without makeup. I wear it when I work so people will take me more seriously. On the days I work at home...... wet hair goes into a ponytail and makeup is not even considered.

Anonymous said...

I'm 48 and never did wear much makeup. I always thought I looked ok without. Lately when I look at myself I see all the little old ladies I grew up with. Sometimes it bothers me but most of the time I have more important things to worry about than how I look to someone else. A couple of months ago I ended up with a scar on my cheek. It could have been a lot worse so I don't worry about it. Its kind of funny because it falls into a line when I laugh so it looks like it should be there.

I also notice people usually don't want to have their pictures taken because they don't look perfect. I'm one of them. But when looking at pictures of loved ones from years past. I don't care how they looked just that I can see and remember them again. So now I just smile when the cameras come out, and hope for the best.


Anonymous said...

I've been a black eyeliner and mascara girl since high school. I have blonde eyelashes, so I feel like I need it. About a year ago, I switched to all natural (Honeybee Gardens) eyeliner- toning it down to gray, and mascara. It has made a huge difference for my eye allergies. Turns out, my itchy, watery eyes are affected severly by conventional cosmetics. I always wear makeup to work as a teacher, but with summer here I'm enjoying not wearing it unless I go out, like to dinner or a party. However, I must say that I'm still embarrassed to see people I know without wearing make up.

Anonymous said...

My mother, aunts, and grandmothers never wore makeup except lipstick for special occassions and church. With a couple of exceptions, I have never worn more than lipstick. Mostly I wore lipstick in high school but got away from it. Even when I was in management, I did not wear makeup. Now at 40, I don't even bother with the lipstick. It just always seemed like too much bother and I prefered to spend the money on books.


hmd said...

I used to wear a lot more than I do now. My hubby actually told me he prefers less (he's from CA and at least in his area, less is more - Santa Cruz). So I usually only wear makeup if I'm going to work or to someone's house (a few days a week). And then it only consists of a little mascara on my top lashes and a touch of eye brow liner since my brows are so blonde you can't see them. It takes all of 60 seconds to put this stuff on. And it is so liberating not needing to primp.

Joanna said...

Makeup is part of stimulating a look of youth. Conceler/foundations are about smooth skin which indicates youth and fertility. mascara and eye-liners mimic big eyes which we loose as we get older and collagen breaks down. Lip-stick gives the impression of fuller,more moist lips again associated with youth.

We women cant get old or go grey because we fear age. We have spent the last fifty years watching beauty and youth set the standard in advertising, entertainment and basically every public aspect of life. So how can we as mere mortal women buck that trend and just be natural? Nothing portrays the lack of reality more than the rising trend for celebrity fixation which the photos on your page display. We are used to seeing the glossed version and magazine racks are filling up with pages of 'gasp-horror: look who has cellulite' pages which society eats up because the style icons of today all appear so perfect 24/7.

I sometimes wear mascara, sometimes not and it all depends on the state of my self-esteeme. Do I feel young and alive or old and busted?

Anonymous said...

I'm 29 and don't wear makeup unless it's for a wedding or some equivalent. Sometimes not even then, depending on the wedding. I feel like a circus clown when I wear makeup, even if it's been professionally, and subtly done. I never wear eye makeup - it makes me swell up and itch.

I read an interview with Tim Gunn recently where he said that people who wear sandals without a professional pedicure make him gag. Who knew my feet were so important to someone I've never met. All I could think was that he has far too little to worry about if strangers' feet are the source of his worries.

Anonymous said...

I'm 57 and I wore makeup every day 30 years ago. I have very oily skin and makeup just runs off - My mother used to tell me when I was young (with zits) that I'd be glad for my oily skin one day (less wrinkles)- and she was right. I wear lipstick all the time (or my mouth would disappear) - forget the mascara, it runs too.
It's all in what you get used to.
Gray hair and years give you the attitude you can do anything you want anyway!
~Mad(elyn) in Alabama

Sam said...

Having my parents repeatedly tell me I was ugly and buying me loads of makeup got me wearing it. I just didn't like it because I think I look a bit fake with makeup on. Not to mention really ridiculous wearing foundation designed for lighter skinned women. I'm not into the mime artist look.

Over the last few years I've gotten it down to wearing eye liner and maybe a bit of lip gloss. I've started going out without wearing any makeup however (even to parties) for the last year or so. I like it because it saves money and my husband doesn't notice any difference.

Anonymous said...

I've never been a regular make-up user. When I was in high school and college, I had to use gunks of it for theatre productions I was in. Other than that, it was the occasional eye-shadow, mascara and lipstick for special events. Now I've thrown out all of my conventional make-up and switched to Burt's Bees lipstick. Still looking for natural mascara and eye-shadow for those special occasions.

I feel beautiful with and without make-up and have had friends who told me so. When I wear heavy make-up for the stage, people tell me that I look completely different so I rather look and be myself au naturel.

Joyce said...

Fortunately, my husband has always said he doesn't like make-up on women, and he was glad I didn't wear it. He will often comment on how much some woman is wearing. I think women should do what makes them feel comfortable about themselves. Wearing a little is fine if it makes you feel good. But if you're thinking about it a lot, spending a lot of money on it, or burning a lot of time with it, maybe you should re-think what you are doing. Is it really worth it?

Adrienne said...

I rarely wear makeup, b/c I have better things to do with my time and money... however I do think I look better with some mascara on so you can actually see my eyelashes, and some tinted moisturizer that evens out my skin.

Most makeup-wearing is societal, but there's a part within all of us that's still running by pre-historic rules, and it wants to show how healthy and fit we are so we can attract good mates and reproduce... you can't fight biology and sometimes biology wants you to wear foundation.

EcoBurban said...

I do wear a small amount daily - though it's a 5 minute routine. I am pretty sure that I look fine either way, but I think I have grown so accustomed to seeing myself with mascara on, that I feel like I look strange without it. If I hadn't grown up as an 80's child obessed with TONS of makeup, maybe I wouldn't be so familiar with wearing it?

ib mommy said...

I have really long eyelashes so when I put on mascara I look like Raggedy Ann. On top of that I always rub my eyes so then I look like Raggedy Andy just beat me up.

I save the makeup for special occasions, like Halloween, when I have to look scary.

The Simpleton said...

My one vanity is tinted lip balm. :)

I will note, as a blonde of a certain age, that all your make-up-less beauties are dark-haired Latinas. I'm not going to start wearing make-up now, after a lifetime of not doing so, but I'm aware of looking a little washed out in comparison.

It is hard to unhook from the beauty ideal.

Unknown said...

I'm 46 years old and I rarely wear makeup. Before I leave the house each morning, I will blot my face with powder to take away the shine, but other than chap stix, that's it. I've always bucked the trend when it comes to dressing "girly". I don't blow dry or style my hair either. My hubby is perfectly content with the way I look, and that's all that matters to me!

KatieB said...

I wear makeup almost every day. I wear eyeshadow, liner, base and powder. Instead of lipstick, I usually wear gloss. Most of the women I know wear all this and more, and the women I work with come in with a 'full face'. I really like eyeshadow though. I wear different colors on different days, depending on my mood. I have dark brown eyes with very pale skin and I love to see how I can make my eyes "pop" each day. I usually have a makeup free day on the weekend.

I enjoy wearing makeup, I have fun with it, and I love trying new colors.

Anonymous said...

I wear makeup daily, but not a whole lot. I have rosacea, so it kind of even things out. Five minutes tops doing makeup, and five minutes on my hair, tops.

I like to look nice, but I don't want to spend hours doing it. For all of you who want a little powder (I can't stand that goopy foundation stuff) Bare Minerals is the bomb.

Anonymous said...

I'm 24, and I've been wearing makeup in some form since I was 12 -- about 6 months after I started breaking out. I've never worn much, because more than a little eyeliner, mascara, lipgloss and concealer makes me look like a child playing dress-up.

I stopped wearing makeup except for special occasions last fall, because it was basically the only thing I hadn't tried to clear up my skin. I also switched to safer facewash and moisturizer. It didn't help my skin, and it tanked my self-confidence.

I never thought of myself as one of those women who needs makeup to feel good about herself, but there you go. I just started wearing makeup again regularly last month, and it really makes a difference in my day.

Also: Every guy I've ever dated told me he preferred me without makeup. I've always wondered if it's because they think it's what they're supposed to say, or if it's because kissing someone who's wearing foundation is kind of gross.

Wendy said...

In most of nature, the male is the one who is showy and colorful in his attempt to attract a female. It's curious to me why humans do it backward and the females are the ones who are showy and colorful to attract the males.

Anyway, I already have my mate and I attracted him when I was wearing BDUs (Army uniform) and very little make-up. I no longer wear make-up, and he thinks I'm gorgeous. I can, finally, agree - I look better without it than with it.

P.S. I don't color my hair, either - never have.

Michelle said...

I don't even own any makeup except nail polish which I use on my toes. I wouldn't have the foggiest. My beauty routine consists of washing my face and drinking a fresh juice in the morning and I am almost 40 (in half a year!)

Hannah said...

I don't wear makeup at all or use any soaps or lotions marketed as "beauty" products. I don't even wear jewelry. I make these choices for political reasons--but also because I am too cheap to buy all those products, too lazy, too stingy with my time, etc.

My MIL dyes her hair, spends an hour fixing it every day, pays for fancy manicures that cover up her real nails with plastic substitutes, coats herself in makeup and jewelry, wears flashy diverting clothes.

My young son asked her why she doesn't just like herself as she is. Although I was very embarrassed that he asked this question, she wasn't fazed by it. She simply said she looked ugly and old and no one wanted to see that.

Strangely enough, I always think that first thing in the morning, in her plain bathrobe and clean face, she looks so beautiful and fresh and young. It always takes me off guard to see her so honestly. It is like she has taken off the mask which holds everyone at bay the rest of the day.

maryann said...

Like Ardous, I'm lazy and would rather sleep the extra time than bother with the hair or makeup. Now this wasn't always the case, there was a time when I wouldn't leave the house without my hair done and make up on. Now I'm all for the comfort , I think it may have to do with aging, who knows. My hair dryer burnt out in January and I haven't bothered to replace it, and to get lazier I've decided to grow my hair longer so I don't have to wash it everyday and can just pull it back, washing it every 2nd or third day. Makeup routine consists of a smudge of homemade blusher and lipbalm. To think of all the money I used to waste in the drug store on cosmetics is crazy!I guess I'm as cheap as I am lazy.

Tara said...

I'm 36 and I've never worn makeup regularly. I think it looks weird (because I don't look like me anymore) and feels gross. I did find some that I like well enough to wear for once in awhile, and it does make me feel good to put some on for special occasions. I think of it as another extension of getting dressed up - like jewelry. I'm also pale and have rosacea, but I don't care.

Anonymous said...

I don't wear it, and if I do, it's very minimal. I've always rejected the "ideal beauty" standard. I do wear a bit more when we go to church, but the more is usually just eye liner! :)

I have these really dark circles under my eyes that are genetic from my Dad's family. I will usually wear mineral make up concealer there and that's about the constant for me.

mollyjade said...

This is one of the things that really caught my attention in Fontier House. The teenagers looked much better without makeup. Their full makeup at the end of the series looked rediculous. But you would never be able to convince them of that.

Like Debby, I only wear makeup when I need a stranger to take me seriously at work. I look much younger than my age, and it helps, especially with older gentlemen.

scifichick said...

I wear a little concealer on my nose because it's a little on the red side ;-) I don't wear any other make up. I used to wear makeup when I became a teen. It was like a rite of passage - now that I was a teen, I was allowed to wear makeup when going out. And I continued to do so, because I thought that that's what grown ups do. But after having a kid, time in a morning became at a premium and I just didn't want to spend extra 10 minutes putting make up on. And then another 10 minutes at night taking it off. Or feeling guilty that I didn't take it off and now my skin will suffer. Now I only wear makeup on special occasions and then not always either. I feel weird putting makeup on now, like I'm being fake and trying to present a false front. I don't know if it will change with age, I'm turning 30 this year. I have no problem using skin care items, just no makeup.

Crunchy Chicken said...

Oooh, this is very interesting. I'm loving reading your comments. It seems to me that a lot of you out there who don't wear makeup didn't have a strong influence towards it growing up.

My Mom wears a lot of makeup and absolutely will not go outside without it (I think spending the early part of her 20s in Hollywood didn't help). It's mostly a self-esteem thing, which is silly since my Mom is gorgeous.

I definitely had a big push to wear makeup and still do to this day. If, for some reason, I'm wearing lipstick (which is rare) and she sees me, I get the instant "You look nice! Are you wearing more makeup!"

So, it's always been a big influence for me. I remember always hearing "You should wear more makeup". It's not that she thinks I'm ugly, it's that she conforms to a different beauty standard and she wants me to fill that.

It's the same thing with my weight, but that's another story altogether...

Anonymous said...

I'm 38. I've never worn base. I went through a dark eyeliner phase in highschool, but because my cheeks go up over my eyes when I smile (senior pictures and wedding pictures were an arduous task - the photographers earned every red cent on me) my makeup smears whenever I wear it - so I don't.

I look silly in lipstick (lipstick on a pig?) but I CAN'T live without chapstick/burts bees/bag balm/some other lip grease. My tongue is all over the place, hanging out the sides of my mouth, licking my lips, just coming out for air. My husband jokes that I'm catching flies. But it's a 38 year old habit and I'm not likely to stop it, so to cut out potential chapping, I keep the lips well greased, and I dink a lot of water to hydrate the tongue.

just ducky said...

I wear un-petroleum cherry lip balm and some rosacea face cream daily...and that's it! One of the reasons my husband was attracted to me when he first asked me out was that I didn't wear lots of make-up...he hates make-up and is squeamish about touching a face with make-up on it.

My eldest daughter (15 yo) is getting into the whole make-up thing now...but is being converted to the "less is more" philosophy by seeing her friends cake it on and looking scary.

I completely think the whole fashion/beauty/make-up pressure thing is a marketing ploy. "If you look like (fill in name here), you instantly have credibility/self worth/power...." Tell people that a billion times and they are bound to buy your product...

Anna Banana said...

Years ago, when I was probably your age, I decided I would put my sunscreen on in the form of makeup (I suppose the technical term is foundation). It covers up sunspots, those blotchy places fair skin gets from half a lifetime of too much sun. I definitely look better with makeup on. I also wear mascara, but don't stress if I forget to put it on.

Laura said...

I used to wear a "full face" of makeup everyday, but now, I really only ever wear mascara and my Burt's Bees lip balm on a regular basis. There's concealer for those mornings that I wake up looking like I spent the greater portion of the night solving crime. And the occaisional " OooH! Let's try eye shadow again!" moments. I will never give up the mascara, though. Several years ago, during chemo treatments, I lots my eyelashes. When they came back in, they were BLONDE!!! (I am Italian... blonde is a no-go) It dosen't matter how long they are on their own if no one can see them! Therefore, I am a slave to mascara.

And on the husband note: He rarely notices if I do wear a "full face" because it is so much like my not-so-full face. Except to point out the rare smudge of foundation that I missed when blending.

just ducky said...


I just read your follow-up...I definitely come from a strong make-up wearing/loving family too. My mom has a 2 hour morning hair and make-up routine! I think it is crazy--2 friggin' hours!
I have 3 sisters and they all wear make-up. I see their make-up mishaps and it gives me the sister wears foundation that is definitely the wrong shade for her sister wears black eyeliner (not applied well) and seriously frosted lipstick...and my mom has reverse raccoon eyes in every picture she out of all of those women--only 1 sister applies her make-up well...
And my mother has told me "If you would wear a little make-up you'd be such a doll!" as well as "If you'd just lose 20 lbs, you'd be such a catch!" which I replied "If a man only likes me WITH make-up or ONLY when I'm 20 lbs thinner---why would I want to be with that kind of man?"
Craziness I tell ya! My family is crazy...

Mamalaina said...

I wore makeup daily from about age 16-29...coincidently that's when I had my first child...hmm..I also showered daily until then...
Now, 5 years later, I wear mascara and lipgloss if I'm going to the store or if I'm staying home and feeling particularly tired and blah (blonde lashes and bags don't mix) otherwise I wear nothing. If I'm working I wear a 5 min. face. Special occasions call for the full face in my books.

Christy said...

I never wear makeup, haven't worn it in over 5 years. Even in high school and college I wore it very little. I just don't feel right with it on. My husband prefers me without makeup, which helps, since I do too.

Bld424 said...

Well, I've got to post now that EVERY other post seems anti-makeup, or at least ill informed about makeup.

I am 25, married, and love makeup. Some of my fondest memories are helping my sisters with their eye makeup for prom or a job interview. There is lots of girl-time bonding that can happen over pretty colors and mascara advice.

I love collecting eye shadows, buying lip gloss, etc. Its fun. Though my career is science teacher, my secret dream job is to be a makeup artist.

Its fine if people don't want to spend time putting it on, but really, it doesn't take too much time if you get a powder foundation, or mineral powder or something. And, nearly every company offers products designed for sensetive skin that won't create allergies or breakouts.

If make up doesn't add to your confidence, doesn't make you feel a little peppier, and isn't fun for you, it makes sense that you don't wear it. Don't rule it out before you try it.

BUT... as a totaly honest opinion, I do think all women look better with at least SOME to enhance their natural beauty. (I think men might, too, but have only succeeded in getting my husband to use sunscreen face lotion).

Maybe I am a product of a media-beauty-saturated world, but I think I am prettier for it.

Deanna said...

I guess I'm in the minority here because I do wear makeup every day, even if I'm not going anywhere. I use mineral makeup as my foundation which looks so natural but covers imperfections. I'm very, very fair so carefully applied blush just keeps me from looking like I'm about to faint. I use a little bit of eyeliner pencil, a powdered bronzer as eyeshadow (no real color, just a little depth), mascara and currently, Burt's Bees lipgloss.

I also make sure my hair looks nice, although since it's long and wavy it really doesn't take a lot of work. And I wear perfume every single day and before going to bed at night.

I take care of my skin and try to dress attractively every day even though I'm not working outside the home. Guess what? My husband truly appreciates my efforts to still look nice for him despite the fact we've been married 27 years. I know he would still love me if I didn't do all this but I like seeing that little gleam of lust in his eyes when looks at me.

That said, I am trying to locate the most natural, eco-friendly beauty products. Everyday Minerals makes the BEST mineral makeups which are rated very highly in terms of safety. Because of recent reports of lead in lipstick I have switched to Burt's Bees lipgloss. I just received my order for skincare products from NurtureMyBody which are safe, organic and not tested on animals. They also come in glass containers which I love.

I say, to each his/her own, but I know I look better with some carefully applied makeup so that is what I'll keep doing.

Green Bean said...

I don't wear makeup and haven't for about 10 years ago or so. In fact, all I own is a stick of cover up for desparately zitty times and some 10 year old blush. It's not out of making a statement or anything. I'm just lazy. Who wants to spend all that time "putting your face on" and then "taking it off".

Kelsie said...

I grew up not knowing that girls were supposed to be thin, plaster themselves with make-up, and care what other people thought of their's just how my mother raised me. She put on make-up every day (a 30 minute routine), but she never encouraged me to try it, and she always complimented my good grades, the book I'd read, or the new bug I'd dragged in from the woods...the focus was rarely on looking pretty. In high school (a private school), I was blissfully unaware of what the other girls were saying behind my back (though I found out eventually), as my entire life consisted of practicing my music and hanging out with the English teachers...

Then, college. It was horrible--like a delayed coming of age. Within the year, I had developed borderline anorexia, started wearing make-up, and spent a lot of time glaring at myself in the mirror.

I kind of hit rock bottom--my grades dropped, my music fell away for awhile, my self-confidence cratered, I was sick constantly. Then, I found a new crowd (the crunchy/feminist/literary crowd) and an evolutionary psychology class, and I started to detox from the Cosmo magazine mindset. I haven't worn make-up since, and I don't plan to. The closest I get is Burt's Bees tinted lip balm when I'm going somewhere "special." And I do enjoy the occasional spritz of perfume. Otherwise, it's some essential oil under the arms, a ponytail, and I'm ready to go.

What I get so sick of is girls/women coming up to me--girls I've never seen, or perhaps girls I've only spoken to once or twice--and telling me, "You'd look so pretty if you'd wear some make-up! Do you want me to give you a makeover?" as if maybe I just had never figured it out, and I was someone to be pitied.

And still, my mother does nothing more than nag me about plucking my eyebrows.

Susanne said...

I do wear make-up. Usually I apply it at noon because that's when I take showers and I'm teaching in the afternoon. I look much better with make-up because I'm really pale, and without it people often ask me if I'm feeling unwell.

I don't have a problem going about without it, though, I do all my errands without make-up and sometimes I don't bother before teaching either.

The make-up I'm using doesn't make me look "made up"the only thing that's noticeable is the eyeliner.

I use concealer around my eyes, a powder make-up, eye-liner, eyeshadow, mascara, blusher, and lipstick on an almost daily basis.

Michelle said...

Woman in general did not wear makeup until the 1920s. This is the age where America started to go "wild." I do not wear any makeup. It is so unhealthy for your skin, and everyone looks better without it. It breaks my heart when I see an ederly lady with such fake looking makeup on. Makeup does not make someone beautiful, an inner glow does.

Anonymous said...

I am a mascara girl. I remember forgetting to apply it once in high school (10 years ago) and a dozen people asked me if I felt sick! It is funny because I actually have naturally long, dark lashes.

But the hair thing -- I've always had unruly hair. I spent hours --years, even -- drying it and using hot rollers. It got curlier after my son was born. In January, I cut it off and can now let it air dry. So liberating!

mom23 said...

I wear makeup about 30% of the time. And I come from a family with a mom and 2 older sisters who can't leave the house unless they are DRESSED and in full makeup. I'm looking for more organic makeup options too.

Funky Mama said...

I do wear makeup, but nothing that I would say drastically alters my appearance. I wear a light mineral foundation to even out my patchy, blotchy, acne prone skin. But lately I haven't been wearing that. I have started cleaning my skin with the oil cleansing method and my skin has improved DRAMATICALLY leaps and bounds. So out went the foundation most of the time. And I wear mascara. Outside of that, it's a special occasion for me to wear a lot of makeup. I am happy without it. I don't think it makes you beautiful. But I have recently been redefining my idea of beauty. I just dreadlocked my hair recently, and I have never felt more free.

Anonymous said...

Don't wear make-up anymore! Never was a big make-up wearer but pretty much gave it up completely at the beginning of this year. Only wear a a little powder when going out (rare event). I like NOT wearing it much better than wearing it! And I think I look just as good without it! Not sure if others would agree though...

Segwyne said...

I wore makeup occasionally when I was a teenager, usually when I was dressing up for whatever reason. My occasions for wearing it grew fewer and farther between, to the point that it was a year or more between wearing it. I am now 32, and I think the last time I wore makeup was for a company Christmas party 7 years ago.

I think not wearing any has been good for my face. I must admit, though, that being told I am not old enough to have children is irritating. I finally stopped getting carded for alcohol, though. Oh wait, that is probably because I haven't bought alcohol for a long time. Yeah, being told I can't possibly be old enough to have a daughter who is 12 really bugs me, especially when folks don't really bat an aye at the 15-year-olds here having kids. I was at least 20 and married when my first was born.

As for hair, I got a perm for my 15th birthday. It looked horrible. I now only wear my hair au naturale, long and pin straight. My 12-year-old has a curling iron, but I showed her a week or so ago how to curl hair with rag strips. Same effect, no electricity or burns.

Robin said...

I used to love applying my ring of black eyeliner, my many coats of mascara, my deep, deep red lipstick. My makeup was my warrior mask, the magic that made me beautiful; combined with my sky high heels or my smurf-kicking boots, I was transformed into something powerful.

These days, I could care less. I have so many better things to do, I can't be bothered with the apllication, the upkeep, the taking off.

My daughter, fresh scrubbed and rosy cheeked, is the most beautiful being on the planet. What sort of example would I be setting, hiding my self behind a mask?

Anonymous said...

As far as makeup goes, I only use one thing. And I wish I could get rid of it! Clinique superpowder. I know! If I could find something like this stuff only more natural, I'd wean myself off the SP in a minute. I hate liquid foundation, and most powders don't even out my skin tone very well. Any suggestions? I use chapstick every day and will occasionally wear ultra waterproof mascara. I don't like how I look with eyeliner, blush, and lipstick. Those are in the Halloween box. :)

Peak Oil Hausfrau said...

I have to say I look better with cover-up under my eyes and a bit of mascara. Special occasions call for a bit o' eyeliner and lipgloss. Base, though - ick!!

Hubby says he can't tell the difference.

I do wish that I could do my hair. I am hopeless with my hair. Especially because I don't blow dry it.

Anonymous said...

No makeup at all, here. I just never started wearing it, and I've yet to feel any "need" to do so. No one's really mentioned that I should, either (other than a few friends, mostly back in high school), so I rarely even think about it.

Jamie D. said...

I guess I'm the opposite (first comment an opposing view...hmmm). I never wore much makeup as a teen, or in college, or even to my first "real" after college job. But I read a book about being successful, and it said that wearing makeup was important for advancement in a professional setting. So I started wearing makeup (and dressing better, got a haircut, etc), just to see if anything would happen. And within 6 months I had a new position and a raise, and I noticed that my mostly male co-workers were treating me as more of an equal. I actually felt more self-concious wearing makeup than not for most of that time, because I'd worn it so seldomly before that I felt "weird" with makeup on.

I should note that I've always had bad skin...and I've never grown out of it.

So I wear makeup daily to work - mineral makeup (EM), that looks mostly just like "me", only with more even skin tone and without so many angry red spots. I've found that the mineral makeup absorbs oil too, which keeps my skin from breaking out so much, so it actually helps my skin to be healthier (it's a natural sunblock too). I only use a natural oil moisturizer as well (also from EM). And Burt's Bees lip balm or gloss (my lips are always dry and chapped - I have to keep something on them).

On the weekends, it just depends on what I'm doing. Running errands with my hubby, I will sometimes just put powder on (to absorb oil), and call it good. Sometimes I don't get that far. And if we're going out somewhere with friends, I do wear makeup, because I really do notice a shift in people's perception of me, and I'm not all that social, so I need all the help I can get.

My makeup "routine" takes me around 5-10 minutes every morning for moisturizer, foundation, eyeliner (mineral eyeliner too), eyeshadow, blush, and powder. My hair is short, so I have to wash/style it every morning...takes about 5 minutes to style after my shower. On weekends, I just wear a hat to work in the yard or run around town. :-)

Anonymous said...

I grew up in Southern California, very near Hollywood, and have never worn make-up. I think my mother might have worn some when she was younger, but she's never encouraged me to do so (and she spent her teen years even closer to Hollywood). In fact, I remember getting quite reprimanded for going into her make-up cabinet and getting creative...

Wendy said...

I never wear makeup. In fact, I've actually bought some because I was gong to be in a wedding.

My mom always said that if you started wearing makeup, everyone will always expect you to look that good. For some reason, that made an impression on me. I remember asking a friend (in High School) if she was sick. Turned out she just forgot to put on makeup that day.

I like to keep the bar at a reasonable level. And why not? Men do it and no one thinks twice about it.

Anonymous said...

I disagree with the comments that "everyone looks better without makeup." Maybe it's just how I've been trained, but some look good without, some look better with. Not that anyone should HAVE to wear makeup, but as some commenters have noted, we're judged on appearance in our society and sometimes fitting in has its benefits.

Personally, I read some beauty advice once: "After 30, always wear makeup," and I take that advice. Most people would say I do not wear makeup, from looking at me. But honest to god, there are some mornings when my over-30 self takes a look in the mirror and it's just depressing. A little concealer, a quick brush of mineral makeup, and a quick shot of subtle eyeshadow and mascara and I gain new hope. My husband doesn't care either way, but I know I look better. I prefer not to think "oh no!" when I glimpse myself in the mirror later in the day. ;)

My 7-year-old borrows lip gloss about once a year and otherwise couldn't care less about makeup -- she thinks she looks the most beautiful when she's fulfilling her inner vision (looking like the "character" she's chosen to be on that specific day).

@Bham Meg ... mineral makeup?

Anonymous said...

I think a lot of the people who get comments ("are you sick?" when they don't wear makeup, it's just the contrast from the way they usually look.

I don't usually wear makeup, and I've found that if I start wearing it for some skin reason (redness, zits) it actually makes it worse.

I do like to play with it sometimes, though - and my boyfriend totally does not appreciate it. He thinks I look better without, so if I wear heels & lipstick I get a lot of approval from *other* people, but not from him.

I buy the professional success argument, though, for a whole bunch of professions - I have a friend who works in DC and she started wearing makeup because it makes her look older, so people take her more seriously. But I think in general it really, really sucks that there are so many jobs where you get better treatment if you're more conventionally pretty. I have managed to just stay away from those workplaces, but it's easier here (Minneapolis) than it would be in other cities I've lived in (New York especially).

Anonymous said...

I stopped wearing makeup over seven years ago (I'm thirty), when I realized I was wearing it as a sort of mask. I had terribly low self-esteem and I was trying to hide myself from the world. Ironically, since I've stopped, my self-esteem has increased. I'm really, really ok with myself, flaws and all... and that feels beautiful.

Anonymous said...

I'm very blonde, fair skined, with a bit of redness on the nose, cheeks, and chin, so I wear a mineral powder base to even things out, a little brow powder to even out my scraggly brows, a little taupe shadow for definition, mascara so I have eyelashes, and a little soft black eyeliner.

I've grown up thinking that I NEED makeup, that I have no face without makeup, but as I get older, I'm trying to wean myself from it. For years I wouldn't DREAM of going out of the house without makeup on, but now on the weekends I try to venture out to the store barefaced and try to remember that no one cares if I have makeup on or not. I think most women look great without makeup, I just think I'm not one of them.

Kristijoy said...

NO make-up here, no point nor reason. I use no "beauty" products at alllll. Th only reason 'we" (as a culture) think we needs them is because we are sold them and it's been ingrained in our culture for so long that you "need' it, that we expect people to wear it. People don;t really look 'better' with it, it's just we've been sold this ever youthful dolled up image since birth that THAT is what beauty is. Well, I don't give a crap what people look like. I don't think beauty is important. I care more about who you are as a person. Not what you wear on your face, your hair or your clothes, male or female. I am saddened that we as women, especially, are made to feel our self worth and value lies in how young we can keep pretending to look.

I'm just over 30, and it took me most of that time to get over the shill of the beauty myth.

Anita said...

I only wear a little bit, and never on days when I don't leave the house, or I'm going somewhere it's not necessary. Just a bit of tinted sunscreen, mascara, lip gloss usually.
I have horrible skin, and just look better with a bit on!

Harper said...

In junior high a friendship ended when the friend started wearing make-up -- I thought she was too young and she thought I was too judgmental. There was a group of girls in that school who wore very heavy make-up; pancake foundation and black eyeliner, and when they didn't wear it they looked faded and weird which made an impression on me -- once you start the expectation is that you continue.
When I started wearing contact lenses at 17 I started wearing a little mascara but not always. In my twenties I wore make-up pretty much daily although it always looked fairly natural. I began to realize whether I wore make-up or not was pretty much an external decision -- it was camouflage, I didn't want to be noticed for wearing OR for not wearing make-up.
In my thirties I stopped wearing make-up except when I visited a certain high-school friend. For her no-make-up equaled depression -- it was easier to wear make-up than have the same discussion over and over.
In my forties I developed rosacea and became very self-conscious about my skin. I pretty much always wear some kind of foundation - now I'm using a tinted mineral moisturizer with mineral powder over it. Allergies usually keep me from wearing eye make-up. But I am obsessed with lip balm (I live in a very dry climate) and enjoy using tinted balms of various colors.
Even when I wore the full regalia of base, mascara, lipstick, and eye-shadow my make-up routine took about 5 minutes. As for men -- most thought I didn't wear make-up -- so they were never really part of the equation for me. I'd put on make-up for fun sometimes (just like when I would dye my hair red or black for fun), or as camouflage, or out of self-consciousness.

Glenda said...

I don't often wear makeup, but I also no longer am in a work environment. If I was, I'd wear makeup to work every day, just like I did before I became a fulltime at-home mom. The makeup routine would be greatly scaled back from what it was "back in the day", but the routine would exist. In fact, several times a year I attend a business meeting and I make a point of allowing myself extra time beforehand to put on makeup. In a business setting, I'm more comfortable having it on.

I like how eye makeup accentuates my eyes. I like how a mineral powder evens out the redness and blotchiness that have shown up in my face over the years (I'm 42). But for my current everyday life, I have no interest in wearing makeup, and I'm plenty comfortable going without it.

Hubby and I don't go out often, but when we do I like to put on some makeup -- doesn't mean I always do -- sometimes just going out is all I'm up for! But when I have time to put on a little makeup before going out, I do.

I don't think about it as "makeup makes me look younger" or "I'm prettier with makeup on" -- it's simply, "I like how eye makeup makes my eyes pop and how mineral powder helps the red spots not be quite so much a focal point". It's simply a tool available if I want to use it.

My mom, who's 60, won't go out and about without makeup on. But she's part of a generation that accomplished things for women that benefit my generation. In her day, makeup was necessary (esp. here in the South, it seems). We're in a rural-ish area of west Texas and men of her generation expect women to wear makeup and have their hair "fixed". In fact, a man several years her senior pulled me aside after a business meeting one time and told me I needed to wear more makeup "for my husband's sake". (Oh, was my husband PISSED when I told him.) This was about 8 years ago, but it's still a fairly common attitude of men of that generation in this area. Thank goodness MY man isn't of that generation and thinks I'm beautiful with *and* without makeup!! Thank goodness *I* have come to think I look fine with or without makeup, cuz goodness knows there were plenty of years I wore makeup that I did not feel pretty.

It's me said...

I like foundation. Yup. I said it. I have dry skin that had quite a bit of damage from living in Hawaii and I like putting on lotion every morning and then brushing on a thin film of a nice and creamy base. I end up not as "peely" as when I go without. I also don't wear a "mask", just a film that adds a little sunscreen and evens things out.

That said, I have no problem going out without makeup and my hair in a couple of braids (everyone says women over a 'certain age' shouldn't wear braids on the side. I say Phooey). So obviously the makeup isn't to fit in with society's standards.

Do you think there's a connection between being "environmentally aware" and going without makeup? It seems that a lot of readers here are non makeup wearers... and I wonder if that's part of the "green and crunchy" movement?

Tammi said...

I like to put on makeup for going out on the weekends, even it's only for a trip to the pet store.

It's only minimal amount though, some eyeshadow and mascara. With summer, eyeliner just melts off so I don't bother. I spend 98% if my time at home with my children so getting out of the house is a bit special so I like to feel pretty. I don't wear makeup for anyone but myself.

Joan said...

About 1 1/2 years ago I switched to the mineral makeup and love it. It helps with my oily skin, looks more natural, and it doesn't take much time. Even with it, I don't wear a lot.

Crunchy Chicken said...

meadowlark - I think we are definitely witnessing sampling bias here. If this blog was a shopping/beauty products blog the answers would be quite different.

And, frankly, I'm actually quite shocked at how many women responding are comfortable with no makeup.

I figured that most women liked to wear makeup, that it made them feel prettier or that they felt a cultural pressure to do so.

Crunchy Chicken said...

Alright, people. WTF is the story with mineral makeup? Did I miss the mineral makeup boat? What the hell is it?

It sounds like crack cocaine for makeup since y'all are loving it so... does it really do anything or is this just the latest beauty miracle?

Anonymous said...

I use Bare Minerals since around Thanksgiving last year. I really like it, it feels like nothing is on but gives you an spf 15 and evens out my skin tone and kind of hides my freckles (and helps me prevent new freckles which is really why I use it everyday).

I basically just do that during the day and sometimes add in mascara and lip gloss if I'm going out somewhere special. I just switched to Honeybee Gardens mascara and you need to apply 2 coats and it comes off very easily with water (or tears) but other than that, I like it.

Everything I use now is non-toxic and natural from crystal deodorant to shampoo, hair products, moisturizers, makeup and sunscreens. Totally doable and I like everything I'm using.

It's me said...

And someone please comment on how Bare Minerals works for dry skin. I'm definitely curious.

Thanks for posing this question crunchy!

allison said...

I rarely wear makeup. The last time I worn it was several years ago. I know how to apply it, have good quality makeup available if I want it, but I dont like to bother.

If I wear makeup, I find myself constantly checking my face to find out if Ive smeared anything or messed up my face or look oily. It's way too much of a hassle!

I remember my mom telling me once, in high school, "You should put a little makeup on! Stop hiding yourself!"

I STILL dont understand what she meant. If you wear makeup "right," then it shouldnt even look like you are wearing it, right? Then why bother?

I think Im generally a disappointment to my mother about makeup and clothing. :)

Anonymous said...

I grew up in it, but I stopped wearing make-up at least 15 years ago. There have only been a couple of occasions where I have since then: my wedding, my sister's wedding, and a couple of times when I wore a bit of lipstick or a tad bit of powder. I could probably count those on one hand.

And, I lived in LA for 10 years. I agree completely that there is a lot of pressure there to wear make-up and nice clothes and live in a great place and go out to eat A LOT...

I guess you just get used to it, and it feels really weird to wear make-up now. Sort of the opposite feeling from what you are talking about - I feel covered up and not myself. My skin is much clearer, too. And I don't spend money and time on make-up, nor do I have to search far and wide for the all-natural no-kill make-up. ; )

I think I started weaning myself off of it by first letting myself go without a base, and just use a little powder. Then using lip gloss instead of lipstick. Then stopping the eye stuff. And so it goes, until you're just wearing lipstick on occasion.

Deanna said...

I've always worn foundation to even my skin tones and cover blemishes (and because it usually contains sunscreen which is important for my fair complexion) but when I discovered mineral makeup it was amazing. You just brush it on, it makes your skin look great but not like a mask (something you have to be very careful about with liquid foundation), it provides sunscreen and it lasts beautifully all day. I will never go back to regular foundation. I started with Bare Minerals but fairly recently switched to Everyday Minerals (available online). It's much less expensive, contains safer ingredients and I think it works better than Bare Minerals.

I have a few light freckles across my upper cheeks and I can apply the mineral makeup in such a way that these still show through, giving me a very fresh and natural look. Or, for more formal occasions I can apply more and achieve a nearly flawless look. Either way, it doesn't look like I'm wearing makeup but like I have really good skin (which I don't).

I don't apply makeup in such a way that people look at me and think, "nice makeup". My goal is to look like I'm just naturally pretty. Think of how you look after um, truly satisfying sex. Skin glowing, rosy cheeks and lips, bright eyes. That's what I try to achieve with makeup. That's my everyday look. I do like to kick it up a notch for special occasions -- extra eyeliner, smoky eyeshadow, extra coat of mascara -- but for everyday I just like to look naturally attractive.

Oh, one more thing. I'm not one of those people who looks like a totally different person without makeup. My husband has made that observation after seeing various friends who usually wear a lot of makeup and then seeing them without. We've been married a very long time so I feel pretty certain he's being honest about this. ;)

Anonymous said...

Most of the time I don't wear it. If I do, it is usually mascara and blush for my inherited pale Irish complexion. If I'm feeling extra special, I might put on some lipstick. Or if I do have a special occasion, I might add the extra eye shadow, eye liner, etc.
As I've gone from my 20s to 30s, I've been wearing a lot less.

Sylvia said...

heh, as a performer, I'm often called on to wear makeup. I definitely fell into the "oh I'm so ugly I must wear makeup" 80's teenage girl trap. Yuck. Took quite a while to get over that. I've made most of my peace about wearing it now- if I work, on it goes. If I'm not, I don't bother. I look fine without it, except more tired, which I don't love, but honestly, I am tired (1 yr old son who doesn't sleep more than 3 hrs at a time) and also don't care. It can be fun to put on, or annoying, it just depends on the context. I very often get the "you look really good!" comment from various people who see me both with and without makeup, and the comment is only when I wear makeup. I know that that's the only difference, but eh, I still don't care. They're usually embarrassed when I say, "oh I'm wearing makeup today!" so I know it's more an unconscious expression for them (So now I just say, "Thanks." Embarrassing people isn't that nice.) I know I know how to apply it really well, so it "works" to emphasize what is thought of as beauty. It is a good humbling and existential reminder for me, though, that yes, I'm aging (36). But I still look good! And maybe, some day, I'll get some sleep again.

Anonymous said...

I think I have worn make up like 5 times in my 30 years of life. Dance show. Prom (against my better judgement!) and drama onstage. I flat out refused to wear it for my wedding b/c that is not me and I wanted to look like me. My mom was upset b/c she thought it would look bad in pics. So I retorted, "So you're saying I look bad?" Yeah. PS thanks to Rob for being a guy and supporting us make-up free ladies. We need to keep hearing it b/c sometimes we don't feel like guys notice or care or even like us as much as celebrities. Ok, maybe that's just me. So thanks for that. =)

Anonymous said...

I'm 31, and I wear no makeup. I did try a few years ago, and was struck by how goofy I felt wearing it. I break out easily, so had to buy the "good stuff," which made it really expensive.

I had mixed feelings about makeup for a long mother used to wear a lot when I was growing up, and I remember watching her apply it all with facination. She wears less at 58 than she did at 30!

My husband hates makeup, so he's thrilled I don't wear any. Now that I am more environmentally aware, I am disturbed by the amount of crap in makeup.

I also have three young daughters, and I refuse to allow them to wear any makeup. I am always shocked when people give them little girl makeup kits, etc. It is so messed up!

Moving on....

maryann said...

I'm cheap and won't pay for the brand name mineral make up. I make my own, a little arrowroot powder and corn starch and add my own minerals for color. I get the mineral coloring on line at Works for me, MUCH less expensive and lasts forever.

Jennifer said...

I don't wear makeup, and never have except for a 2 month stint when I was 16.

My husband has told me on numerous occasions that he is so glad I don't wear it.

Anonymous said...

Crunchy, the mineral makeup craze began a few years ago, but the most well known brands (i.e. Bare Minerals) have ingredients that I'm allergic to, and that caused rosacea over time, so I purchase mine online from a local gal here in WI, she's on, Pink Quartz Minerals. She has so many colors, and matched my skin perfectly, so when I'm wearing it, it doesn't look like I'm wearing any base, and it kinda moisturizes my skin as well, and there's a natural SPF in the minerals.

maryann said...

Not to be a note hog, but for anyone with problem skin, you'll think I'm crazy but, can I recommend milk. I have really bad skin (oily and prone to break outs)and in one of my books I kept finding old wives remedy of milk for skin blemishes, I tried it and oh my god does it work. I just dip a small cloth or cotton pad in milk and wipe it on my face before I go to bed and by morning my skin is clear again, works great for heat rash also.

CatHerder said...

I used to NEVER leave the house without it...base, liner, mascara, blush, lipstick.....i dont wear ANY of it anymore. Occasionally eyeliner underneath to "wake up" my eyes, but nothing else ...for the first time EVER i went to a work function with my husband....all his coworkers said i looked YOUNGER...I also like the idea i dont have to worry about it running, or reapplying after swimming etc. You are absolutely right, its liberating....and i havent used a blowdryer in over 2 years when i get ready to go out, it takes me 5 minutes, not 2 hours.

Michelle said...

I'm 27, and my daily makeup routine usually includes Bare Minerals foundation and Dr. Pepper Lip Smackers for color and moisture. For special occasions, I add a little lip liner blended into the Lip Smackers, blush or bronzer, mascara, and sometimes eyeliner. I've worn Bare Minerals for over three years, and I love it--it doesn't get caked or creased, and it feels amazing. I'd like to find a petroleum-free substitute for my beloved Lip Smackers, which I've worn since middle school, but for now I'm using up the tubes I have left. My husband compliments me when I'm spruced up for special occasions, but in daily life he likes my minimalist look--especially because I can get ready in five minutes!

I struggle with acne, and on good skin days, I will often go without makeup if I'm just running errands. But I still have the acne scars, so I feel better after brushing a little minerals on. I feel like covering up my break-outs and acne scars lets people see me and not my bad skin.

Katie said...

I wear no make-up. I used to try a bit in college and immediately afterwards, but between abnormally teary eyes (whenever it's colder than 60F) and a tendency to get cold sores (some lipsticks exacerbate this), I never grew fond of the glop.

The final straw came three days after I got married, when my groom told me that he was a crossdresser with a penchant for red lipstick. I left him 11 years ago, and gladly gave him custody of all the cosmetics...just tacked that onto the settlement.

Guess you could say make-up is a loaded topic in my little world.

Ash said...

I'm a 27 yr. old mother of 4 and I do not wear any makeup anymore. I occasionally put on some powder when I have pimples pop-up, but the only time I make an effort is when my husband and I go out on the town. As for him he does not like make-up, he likes my natural look. I thought he might like the make-up thing, but when I had a friend do her Mary-Kay thing to me he did't like it at all. Which was good b/c I felt like I had about 10 lbs. of gunk on my face. Plus, I feel like it's better for me not to wear make-up....I don't want my girls seeing me with a lot of make-up on and thinking that they aren't pretty without it.

barefoot gardener said...

My mom never left the house without makeup. Ever.

I did go through a period where I wore makeup pretty regularly, but it never worked out well for me. Being a redhead with super pale skin made it hard to find shades that didn't make me look like a clown, and my skin is really sensitive too, so most makeup would make me itch like crazy.

I definitely think I look better with a little makeup ~ powder to even out my blotchy-ness, mascara so you can tell I have eyelashes ~ but I just can't muster up the energy to bother with it. I will put makeup on if it is a special occasion, but just to go to the store? No way.

I don't really fix my hair much, either. It is really long, so braids and ponytails are the norm for me there

Anonymous said...

I had very very very bad skin in my early 20s (I've rarely seen a girl with skin as bad as mine was). Yet I never learned to wear make up, so my imperfections were always painfully OUT THERE.

Now, I wear coverup for occasional blemishes and lip gloss/chapstick everyday. When I go out, about once or twice a week, I wear mascara. Now in my early 30s, I wish that I had learned to wear eye make up or lip liner or other stuff for interviews or fancy events like weddings--it makes me feel very self conscious.

Crunchy Domestic Goddess said...

ya know, i used to put some on (although it was barely noticeable) almost every day even if i would just be at home and i felt naked w/o it. lately though, i hardly ever put it on and when i do, it is still as before, barely noticeable. i do feel a little bit better when i wear it and am leaving the house though. makes me feel like i didn't just roll out of bed.

Maeve said...

People have altered their appearance for thousands of years, so it's nothing new. Check out all those ancient Egyptians, and their kohl eyeliner.

Do what makes you feel happy, beautiful and confident. Nothing else really matters, unless it's a job requirement and you need the money.

Anonymous said...

Crunch - Here's where I get my mineral makeup: go to and where it says "chose brand" hit the drop down arrow to "Bare Escentuals".

Best stuff ever. I have severe chemical allergies and I can use this stuff. One of the containers is $25, but it lasts forever. Depends on how much you use it, of course, but one lasts me three to six months.

Also there is

I buy stuff off here too. They are the nicest people ever in their customer relations department. They don't just sell makeup -- but they use fragrance and chemical free products.

Don't mean to sound like an informercial, but you asked what it was and where we got it.

Now you know.

Anonymous said...

Crunch -- Sorry - you asked one more thing. Does it really work?

You bet your bippy it works. Or I wouldn't buy it. I've been using it for about 4 years now. Plus it has sunscreen built in. And it has like four ingredients.

Anyway, I'll stop being a note hog now that I've answered all your questions!

hoorayparade said...

I use mineral makeup too and i have to say its the best thing to wear if you are going to wear makeup.

My mom always likes it better when i "put thought into my appearence" she doen't like to go to the gas station without lipstick on though.
She always gets on to me (lovingly) about not wearing earrings or mascara. It was hard growing up with it though and i know its influennced how i feel about my face/look now.

I have acne which sucks so i try not to wear makeup but if i do decide to put it on mineral makeup is the only thing i'll put on my face anymore because it doesn't make my acne any worse. I also still have the kit i bought from a year and a half ago. It lasts for a good long while.

I love it though and highly recommend it. I would say which brand i use but i don't want to seem like i am selling it.

Maeve said...

I forgot to say that I wore makeup daily once I convinced my mother to let me start wearing it (she's never been big into doing her hair or makeup, or caring about fashion), with the exception of the last couple of years where I've stayed home raising small children.

I almost always wear makeup for fun, official, special occasions. I don't put it on just to run to the store though.

Carley said...

I do not wear makeup. However, I also don't usually comb my hair so I wouldn't count myself as "the norm." My hair is very straight and fine, so it works itself out as it dries. In the same way, my complexion is pretty even so I don't want to mess with it. I used to be fascinated by makeup in high school, but I don't know how to apply it and I've never bothered to learn. My sister, however, regularly wears eye makeup and I think it looks lovely on her. I think she looks lovely without it, too, but I know that the time she spends applying it is quiet and meditative time for her. I let her do my makeup about once a year, but I get antsy about 5 minutes in and I always think I look strange in pictures. Still, its bonding time. I don't think makeup is evil, but I think its something that is probably more important to the person wearing it than anyone else. And, on a last note, I've never had a boyfriend who liked makeup, and I grew up in Southern California.

Anonymous said...

Growing up in a southern California beach town my Mom was always the "glamourous" one - she NEVER went ANYWHERE without a full face of makeup.

I mean NEVER, ANYWHERE without it. For instance, the dog was chained to a post in the yard and jumped the retaining wall. Problem was the chain wasn't long enough - a 80+ pound dog was hanging. The neighbors alerted us. My mother made 11 year old me get out of the bathtub to save the dog telling me that she couldn't do it because the neighbors were out there and she didn't have any makeup on!

Nobody wore makeup at the beach - nobody but my mother!!

As a result I don't wear much makeup. When I did I wanted it to look as natural as possible. As I am becoming more aware of what's in cosmetics and packaging more often than not I use Baking Soda as an exfoliant; Emu Oil and/or Vitamin E Oil as a moisturizer; E Oil as lip gloss.

I am definitely the exception in soCal. I get told by strangers that I'm "brave" - not sure if they mean I'm brave to leave the house looking "horrible" or that I'm brave to buck the trend!

Annie said...

I have never felt ugly not wearing makeup. I used to think I was strange in high school because I had never worn makeup before and I didn't really care about it. College was much the same way. I guess it didn't really matter because I was going to flight school in college and I hated sticking out even more than I already did among the guys. I guess it was easier to not wear makeup around those folks. Then I met my husband. He actually prefers me without makeup. He likes the natural look. I have spent so many years in Alaska where the rain just drips it off and too many years in Las Vegas where the heat just melts it off to really care much about it. I will wear it to go out on the town...but like you said that happens about once a year as well:)

Anonymous said...

I LOVE this post!! As a teacher, I never wear makeup during the school year. In the summer though, I let my beauty routine lapse even more. Scruffy clothes, air-dried hair, and even going a day without a shower feels oddly liberating. The upside of all this laziness, is that when I (very rarely) do wear makeup or dress up, the woman in the mirror looks like a supermodel. (sorta). By keeping myself a pretty low-maintenance for most of my life, it makes my fancy attire moments seem all the more glamorous. Also, I have to wonder, will I ever wish I spent more time applying mascara when I'm on my deathbed? Probably not...

Anonymous said...

Most of the time (95% or greater), I don't bother with any makeup at all, for errands or work (grad student doing lab research) or church or anything. This is for various reasons (which others have also shared)- laziness, not liking feeling "made up", not liking the obviousness of other people's makeup, and the annoying feeling that people treat me differently when I'm wearing it.

As for hair, I never really learned how to blow-dry it, so I always let it air-dry, whatever the length happens to be, and then put it in a bun or ponytail. I don't get it cut very often, and in the lab, there is nothing more annoying than hair swinging down in your face when you're leaning over a piece of equipment, doing an experiment.

What do I wear makeup for? Dates with my husband, and very important school/work stuff (interviews, thesis committee meetings, etc.). For these occasions, my self-consciousness about my bad skin wins out. And for first impressions in professional situations, I truly believe well-applied makeup does more good than harm. The really annoying part? Invariably, people compliment my appearance on these occasions! It's ridiculous! And then I'm more self-conscious about looking nice than I would normally be about looking like a bum!!

Luckily, my husband usually can't even tell if I'm wearing makeup, so I know my bare face is fine with him. :)

BTW, my mom is also of the generation that made-up = pretty. She generally bemoans the fact that I don't wear any makeup or have a "hairstyle", but has stopped saying so to my face. She does, however, compliment vigorously if she happens to see me with so much as lip gloss on!

Ellen said...

I don't wear any makeup because I'm just too lazy. I do wear it when I'm performing (I'm a classical singer, opera, recitals, church/temple gigs etc) because I think I look more professional. But that is it.

Miss Sub said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
From the lion's mouth said...

My skin-care routine consists of putting on sunscreen before I go outside.

That's it.

I think base looks horrible, although I will wear some eye makeup if I'm going somewhere really special.

BerryBird said...

I don't wear makeup, don't own makeup, and never have. I don't own a hair dryer either. I am 34 and pale with oily skin and acne, and grew up in the makeup obsessed 80s, but never understood the appeal. I would guess a combination of laziness and cheapness, mixed in with some contrariness and a general lack of interest. Friends have made me up, so I have "tried it," but frankly, beauty just bores me. Clothes, hair, makeup, all of it. I am just not properly socialized to care about such things. Comfort and function, yes. Beauty, no.

One obvious factor is that beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Some comments say "everyone looks better without makeup" and others say "everyone looks better with makeup." My guess is neither is true, although if I had to agree with one of the statements I would lean towards the former. Someone mentioned a tv show that I already forgot the name of because I haven't seen, but I have found the same to be true with Survivor. On the final episode, taped in the studio with all the contestants made up, they always look clownish and nearly unrecognizable. The jungle look is much more attractive to my eyes, for both the men and the women.

Jena said...

I wear Bare Minerals almost every day and I love it! I'm also a loyal user of the Pro-Activ line for facial cleansing. I neither wore makeup much nor washed my face every day until this past Christmas when my Mom bought me starter sets of both kits and pretty much threatened me in to using it! :)
Now I have such a routine down I do it without thinking about it. I wash my face, use the toner, then the "repairing lotion" (all Pro Activ). Then I use some of the Bare Minerals prep lotion and dust on the powder. I think any moisturizer would work well under the powder to help it stick better. The Bare Minerals powder seems to absorb any grease (I don't have overly grease skin tho) and keep my face feeling nice all day. I have the whole kit but all I ever use is the foundation with the SPF 15. That is why I use it religiously since I spend as much time as possible outdoors. I'd only worn makeup a handful of times before that.
I'm sure you could all tell me a million reasons why the Pro Activ is bad for my skin but since it is working really well to control breakouts on my chin and since I'm getting married next month I am way to scared to try anything else right now! Maybe after the wedding...

Chaotically Calm said...

Make-up..I could take it or leave it but I am a fanatic about my hair.

Anything that casts a reflection I have to look to make sure there is no hair out of place.

If I am in the mood I will use a mineral foundation (so light like wearing nothing) a little concealer for my racoon eyes and some gloss for my lips.

Anonymous said...

Using Make up and styling hair has been a huge issue for me. From the perms my mom and aunt used to give me as a grade-schooler to "add body" to my thick staight hair to all the Mary-Kay parties and free make-overs with $25 purchase as a college student. Ugh. Got harrassed if I was too dolled up, got harrassed by strangers on the street - "you'd really look better if you just put on a bit of makeup, dear" After about 35 years of everyone disapproving of how I looked no matter if I was wearing makeup or not, I said to hell with it! So now I use a bit of powder to control the shine, a bit of lipstick if I think my color is too pale to keep the "concerned" at bay, and mascara if I have to go to a job interview. Truth be told my eyes look great in mascara and liner. I'm just super allergic and get boils from even the hypoallergenic stuff. Sometimes if I'm not too sweaty I'll use a tinted moisturizer with sunscreen to protect my skin from the strong Arizona sun. I have found that if I go all out and put on a full face, because of my large frame and no nonsense gait, I hear whispers behind my back, usually from males, "Was that a man or a woman?" Like the 42DD chest doesn't make it clear enough for them! LOL!
I tried the bare minerals, but it wouldn't stick to my face and felt funny. Perhaps I didn't use the moisturizer first. But my skin get really oily just two hours after washing it. I can't stand the look or feel of shifting makeup, and that shifting, too, adds to the "man in drag" look.

Anonymous said...

I can relate to so many of the commenters!

Over the years I've gone through phases of wearing 'full face' to cover acne (which of course had the undesired affect of exacerbating the problem,) to swearing off completely, to some kind of middle ground, which is where I'm at today.

I'm 36, fair skinned, pale lips, freckles, and hair that kind of blends right into my face. Most days I don't bother wearing makeup anymore, since I work in a dark cubicle farm and rarely see anyone. But when I go out I wear a little concealer, mascara, and a tinted lip balm.

A male friend of mine (from S. Cal, where I have lived my whole life,) once told me "the closer a woman gets to her wake-up face, the better. Another male friend is the biggest offender of the "you look tired" comments. My boyfriend is pretty anti-makeup.

I've also found that it depends who I'm spending my time with. I have a set of low-maintenance friends, and a set of high-maintenance friends. I love them all, each one is a good and decent person in her own way -- but when I'm hanging out with the monied and beautiful set I find myself wearing more makeup and trying to measure up to my perception of them. This is admittedly a weakness in my own character.

To balance that, though -- I have a picture of my boyfriend and me from about a year and a half ago. I'm not wearing any makeup and every little broken capillary, every old acne divot, every freckle and blotch and dark circle is visible. It's one of my favorite pictures anyway, though, because I look unbelievably happy, (as I was,) and I think that's what makes any one of us beautiful.

Great post, great thread, great topic for future thought.

Erika said...

I've gone through phases where I wore make up daily... but it's just too dirty feeling for me - 'sides, I'm not too keen on slathering chemicals all over my face anymore. My hubby met me during one of said phases, and has asked why I don't ever wear make up, even on "nice" occasions, so I'm considering finding some organic/chemical free make up just for special occasions.


Mist said...

I don't wear makeup on a daily basis and haven't since I graduated from high school. I do, however, wear it when I'm going to go out for something special. That, of course, is a rarity.

Truth is, I feel awkward with makeup on. I always feel like it's smearing or I haven't blended things right or that it's too garish.

My husband has often commented on how he prefers me without makeup. *shrugs*

Village Green said...

I only wear make up on stage when I'm acting a role, never in real life.

Jenn said...

meadowlark - hippies don't wear makeup!

Seriously - I think it is a reflection of the green movement. Look at what goes into cosmetics.

Even as a teen, I was horrified by the amount of packaging and crap that is involved with makeup - cardboard and plastic packaging, plastic film, plastic containers.

The odors of the cosmetics also affected me - foundation had a scent that conflicted with blush which smelled different from gloss or shadow... all combining scents for a bit of a dizzying headache.

I never went through a period where I wore makeup daily. I have heard all that crap about how it makes you look more professional but I guess the luxury of a rural California childhood (and several years of catholic elementary school) meant I didn't see a lot of people wearing makeup on a daily basis.

When I started public school in middle school, it was a nightmare. All the girls were in legwarmers and piles of makeup. I never figured out how to wear that stuff. From about 8th grade on, I was teased and tormented by both boys and girls for not wearing it.

"Why don't you wear make up, don't you think you are pretty?" "Are you a boy or a girl, why do you wear jeans all the time?"

I just gave up on my so called peers and made friends with people who graduated 2 or more years ahead of me.

Like other commenters, I remember seeing girls who wore so much pancake and eye makeup that seeing them without it was such a radical change.

I have tried wearing makeup from time to time - it makes me uncomfortable. My skin had a lot of problems for years -- but cutting out dairy cleared up my skin a lot. My body stopped fighting food allergies and all my skin problems went away.

I still can't use moisturizers - they all make me break out. I've tried jojoba oil, I've tried just about everything out there that is non-comedogenic, hypoallergenic and so forth.

The only stuff I can tolerate - and only on the level of about once a week - is by Grateful Body.

I sometimes get liquid eyeliner and mascara to wear for special occasions, but since you are supposed to toss it after 6 months, I usually end up going without for long stretches.

Never ever have managed to figure out the lip color thing. Whether it's lipstick or lip gloss, putting colored stuff on my lips always looks WEIRD to me. I know women who wear lipstick as their only makeup and I just can't figure it out.

I'm just a great big plaid shirt wearing hippie lezbo at heart. What can I say?

Nobody has ever told me I am beautiful except my parents, and they always told me to focus on my intelligence and that the person who would love me would love me for my brains. I've always mistrusted anyone who told me I was pretty or attractive who didn't know me, and it really makes me uncomfortable when people feel compelled to tell me how nice I look in a dress when I show just as much of my legs in shorts (as if there's something more mysterious).

The whole female thing, I don't get. I even got shorted on a 4 week cycle (bitter? no... every three weeks is FUN!).

Squrrl said...

For myself, makeup is a non-issue. My mother never wore it, and I never wear it. I felt obligated to wear it for my wedding, but frankly, the money could have been better spent. I also recognize, though, that I'm a dark brunette with strong features and "a bit of color" is the last thing I'm worried about.

Again, though, that's sample bias. More interesting to me is a memory I have of a while back, riding on the DC metro. I forget why I started noticing, but I was looking around, and in a whole car full of professional people, women wearing suits, etc., VERY few were wearing makeup, as far as I could tell. That did surprise me, but I was glad. I think makeup should be something you do for fun, not something you feel the need to do. It IS fun...sometimes.

Anonymous said...

I rarely wear makeup. It does usually make me feel more feminine or attractive when I do wear it, but I certainly don't feel ugly without it. On days when I want to step up one notch, I'll apply mascara and a sheer lip gloss. I always hated that my mom wouldn't leave the house without blush, mascara and lipstick. I can't stand when my roommate takes hours to get dolled up for a chem lab. And the darling boyfriend doesn't seem to notice when I have makeup on. I will say that I do a good job moisturizing my skin and so I never feel the need to wear a foundation or cover up.

Anonymous said...

I've never been a "proper girl." I tried and tried all through school. Would begin each school year committed to doing my makeup and hair every morning, and that would last for about 2 weeks. By the end of the first month, I'd be lucky to have brushed my teeth. (I'm pretty sure I did brush my teeth every morning in high school, whether my hair got brushed or not.)

Now, at 43, I still can't be bothered, and now I have an excuse. It's green! And I'm really glad I was lazy all those years because I have great skin as a result. I put on makeup maybe once or twice a month for special events. And when I say makeup, I mean blush, lip gloss, and eye shadow. That's it. 3 things. And even still I feel like a drag queen.

Anonymous said...

Oh, and before someone asks me how I manage to find plastic-free eye shadow, blush, and lip gloss, I'll just say that I haven't found plastic-free makeup, and I also haven't bought any new makeup since I started keeping track of plastic over a year ago. That's how rarely I use it.

Rebecca said...

Wow, I'm completely impressed with all the women out there who don't wear make-up.

I'll admit I do wear it... but I'm 25 and work in the fashion industry - so it's pretty much a MUST. I wear some eye make-up and that is usually about it, but almost never foundation. Admittedly, at my previous job (large corporate women's wear company) I felt so washed out and casual/frumpy compared to my co-workers. I have a new job which is more laid back, but in this industry, you have to maintain appearances.

Also, being a student in the Fashion/Clothing/Textiles industry, I've done too much research regarding the beauty ideals (how current beauty ideals developed), and whether or not beauty equates power. Do you need make-up to be beautiful? No. But make-up may instil a sense of confidence, and I think that confidence makes people powerful.

I commend those women who don't wear make-up. I usually don't wear make-up on weekends - to keep myself sane. I had a former flatmate who would put a towel over her head when she walked between her room and the bathroom, because she didn't want any of us (her flatmates) to see her without make-up! Sadly, I think this girl also had some other self-esteem/self-conciousness issues.

Do I think beauty ideals are evil? Not necessarily. I both adhere and want to rebel against them at the same time. There can be a lot of power in appearances - so I think it's best not to underestimate that - even if the fashion/beauty/cosmetic industry is an ugly one.

LeCinQBlog said...

I am a physician.
I never wear make up.
There are a lot of fellow women physicians who wear a lot of makeup though.
I think i look very good without make up .Maybe the confidence allows me to feel okay without makeup.Maybe I am naturally pretty and thus am lucky or some such.
It bothers me if i trying wearing anything on my skin.I feel like i am wearing a mask and my skin doesn't breathe or something.
Infact, i find the concept of eyeshadow and rougue and blush very funny and silly.I think i look funny when i see myself with eyeshadow or rogue.Maybe i don't know the right way to wear make up because of which i find it funny.
Either ways, the maximum i have every done is wear a makeup base, a light lip gloss and eyeliner.This i have done when i attend conferences or meeting, just so that others feel like i have tried dressing up for the occasion.

Sarah said...

I don't wear makeup. I believe beauty shines from the inside out. I feel like I radiate so much more energy now than I did several years ago when I did wear makeup. I haven't used makeup in about 3 years now. It's so freeing. My complexion is clearer now. I'm sure eliminating the toxins applied to my skin has helped out with that.

Anonymous said...

Interesting post and comments!
I do wear a bit of makeup: foundation with sunscreen and some eyeshadow, but I really don't have a problem not wearing it. I like to accessorize more with other stuff (cheap jewelery, scarfs, colored shirts...) than putting too much stuff on my skin. I do feel naked without earrings!And my morning hair routine is just a brush stroke and a pony tail!
And I guess my mom was a influence: her makeup routine is putting some foundation without turning on the bathroom light and then asking me if she looks like a clown!

Tara said...

I have dry skin and Bare Minerals works just fine for me. On the rare occasions that I do wear any makeup, it's the only kind so far I've been able to stand. Just make sure you use a moisturizer first (which I'm sure you do anyway). Also, they include a product called "mineral veil" in the kit that I usually stay away from. It's just a finishing powder that's intended to reduce shine and "set" the makeup to keep it on longer. It's cornstarch based, so I find that it dries my skin out (their other products don't at all). I don't really need it though, because I don't get any shine, and the makeup seems to stay on my skin just fine. If you have really dry skin, I'd steer clear of that one particular item.

Anonymous said...

I'm 45, and as Irish as you can get. I have always worn full blown make-up until the last few years. Blame it on the 80's I guess. Now I just use a very light base foundation that evens out my ruddy skin tone. If I'm going out I'll add mascara and lip gloss. If I'm oily I'll use mineral powder. Getting old sucks and using too much makeup makes me look older. And don't forget ladies, sunscreen, sunscreen, sunscreen.

Carrie and Justin said...

I tried wearing make-up in high-school since I was pale skinned and tended to have red cheeks in the winter (not in the cute way). I liked looking more "sun-kissed." Then I realized it always looked so fake.
Now, I only occasionally wear some eye makeup (& maybe tinted lip gloss) when going out for something special with the hubby. I also dress up at the same time though - so I suppose it is part of the package deal to me.
I think people ought to do, or wear, what they're comfortable with - we're all so wonderfully unique!! We don't need to look alike, but there isn't anything wrong with wanting to accentuate, or downplay for that matter, certain features we find attractive on ourselves.
The irony of course is that too much make-up does far more damage to your skin (why celebrities NEED weekly facials!) than good.

jessica mathew said...

I have never been a make-up wearer. When I do wear it, it's mascara and lip gloss.

I have never felt a pressure to wear make-up and think that, in general, women (and men) look better without it.

Clare K. R. Miller said...

I don't wear makeup. I feel stupid with makeup on. I tried to wear mineral makeup (foundation, mostly, to cover my acne scars) for a while and couldn't be bothered to keep up with it. Sometimes when I want to be dressed up I wear lip gloss. I usually forget.

Jenn said...

I find it funny that there are studies and research to support the idea that wearing makeup instills confidence.

I think what would instill confidence is greater acceptance of all human variation - freckles, ruddy Irish skin and acne scars. That's what makes people unique - not having flawlessly smooth, even colored skin like people in magazine photos.

Wearing make-up makes me feel far from confident - it makes me self-conscious and in a bad way. I'm ok with a bit of mascara and eyeliner, but all the other stuff just works against me.

Most people think I look a lot younger than 38 - I think that's probably because I have never been a smoker, never have had kids (they give you wrinkles! ha!), haven't put my skin through a lot of great stress with cosmetics or birth control, and have eaten a mostly vegetarian diet for most of my life. Not being an alcoholic probably helps a lot, too (they tend to have pretty rough skin).

I never got carded until I turned 30 - I think that not wearing makeup at my age makes it more difficult for people to guess how old I am. Make-up tends show your age through the way you put it on - there are definite generational styles, I think.

Here's to hoping my unadorned face gets carded for wine when I turn 40 in two years. ;)

Anonymous said...

I think I look much better with make-up on (more awake and vibrant). I lucked out on genetics and have dark hair, paleeeee skin and heavy under-eye shadows so can look a bit drak without it. I wish I had an inner glow! *lol* Concealer, a subtle eyeshadow/eyeliner and lipgloss really even the contrasts out and perks my skin tone up. I also like to straighten my hair with a straightening iron occasionally (smooth! glossy! no frizz!) and will miss that when I power-down for the apocalypse. ;)

Having said that I don't wear make-up every day - the chooks and gardens don't give a rats if I look like the living dead and my daughter loves me whatever I look like - so I only use it about once a week or so if I'm going out somewhere or to work, etc...[errr...I don't get out much obviously]

Anonymous said...

I have extreme allergies and have never found anything that does not trigger them. To be fair I haven't tried the mineral stuff as I gave up even trying different kinds several years ago.

I'm very fair, have oily skin that still breaks out at 38, and in the last couple of years my skin tone has become not even at all. I also have light brown eyelashes on my left eye and dark brown/black on my right.

Very rarely do I wish I could wear makeup, and those times are always when I want to have a mask, or look "special", like a job interview, meetings with higher ups, weddings, etc.

But 99.99% of the time I'm glad I have a rock solid excuse. The sad thing is that I feel I have to have the excuse, that I can't just be comfortable in my own skin without it.

Laura said...

Wow, so many responses. Hot topic! :)

I comb my eyebrows into place. I comb my hair wet and let it air dry. (It is wavy.) I carry Burt's Bees tinted balm in my purse and wear that some days.
That's it for my day to day.

If I am 'going out'. I wear some Burt's cream blush. Some perfume. I also probably wear some eye shadow that I still own but that will probably stop soon. Hey, maybe I'll get some Burt's eye creams. Hmmm. :)
I also have some highlight cream stuff that is all chemically and bought before the days I was so hard core. I wear that on rare occasions too.

I have never tried the mineral makeup stuff. No plans to either.

My man loves the no/less makeup look. He is also on board with the no shaving of the pits/legs/nether regions.

I still feel put together and groomed. I just don't have to worry about my mascara running or getting lipstick on anything. I love it. :)

Anonymous said...

I don't wear make-up. Well, once or twice a month maybe, if I'm going out somewhere & want to zing it up a bit..

I tried to get into make-up when I was in college, because other people were. But I failed dismally because it was just sooo muuuuch of a haaasslllle.. going to the shops & testing & trying & this & that & blah blah blah.. as well as my moral conscience back then not permitting me to buy anything that was tested on animals (which didn't leave me with much choice back then.. Body Shop only I think!).

Now, if I buy anything new, it's not to follow a fad, it's a basic item that will do for any occasion. My foundation stuff is from when I went to my high school graduation party, over a decade ago. I still have a couple of eyeliners that my _mum_ had when she was my age! So that must be where I get it from.. my mum.. she doesn't wear much makeup either.

Thanks mum, for not getting me interested in makeup. :D

Now, what about all the boys who are starting to wear makeup?!

Anonymous said...

ps. when i say 'college' that's the Australian version of yrs 11 and 12 of high school

Heather said...

I'm afraid I've gotten sucked up into the beauty maelstrom now that I live in Southern California. I definitely wear more makeup now than when I lived in the Bay Area. So I'm a testament to how outside influences can affect you, even when you are trying to resist.

I tend to wear a pretty "full face" of makeup: foundation, concealer, powder, blush, eyeshadow, eyeliner, mascara, brow liner, clear mascara on the brows, and lipstick and lip gloss.

I would love to break free of my beauty regimen, and hope to simply phase out my makeup as I run out of it.

I read somewhere that women who wear makeup to an interview are more likely to be hired than women who don't. (I know there are plenty of other examples like that, too.) Is it because they seem more polished and professional? Or is it simply that every part of our lives seem to be governed by external "beauty" and what society says is beautiful?

chicken lips said...

I don't wear makeup either. My mother never did and banned my sister and I from wearing it until we were old enough to move out. For this reason, I never earned how to apply it properly. I don't feel much pressure to wear it now either. Probably due to the fact that I am so used to not wearing it, I don't feel like I'm missing out. Additionally, I don't like how it feels or smells, how it's made, or how much it costs. I feel lucky to have missed out all these years. I know that at the end of the day when I wash my face, I will look exactly the same as I did when I woke up, for good or bad.

Abbi said...

I don't wear makeup and never have. I feel very blessed to not have felt pressure in that area. I know that I have saved lots of time and money by choosing not to wear it. Also I think it is better not to wear it for the overall health of my skin.

CatMominPhilly said...

i work with kids, in a preschool, and most of them have special needs. I do not wear makeup to work, 95% of the time. Of course, I also typically wear jeans and a t-shirt too. No-makeup works with this look. If I have a special presentation, need to look extra 'spiffy', or need a 'boost', I will wear it.

I think a lot of it is what crunchy said---I just want the other time to spend on things I enjoy more. When I wear makeup--it's eyeshadow/mascara, foundation, and burts bees lipstick. My best friend, who has degrees in fashion/cosmetology LOVES makeup. It's fun to her. But, she also feels tons of pressure related to her field to look a certain way.

Awesome discussion.

Bobbi & Noe said...

I live in California. I do feel pressure alot to wear make-up. Not from my husband, he really loves me natural- but from society in general. I feel more comfy with make-up on. However, I don't pile it on or anything. I don't wear foundation. I just put some eye and lip makeup on.

Katie_bug said...

I have always worn very little. Usually, if I'm just going to work or some small gathering I'll wear powder if I need it, and a little blush to make me look like I'm still alive (I'm pretty pale). But many times I go without completely. If it's a party I'm going to I feel compelled to throw in mascara and some eye shadow. I look pretty much the same without makeup though.

I've always been afraid of things like eye liner and lip stick. I've never wanted it to look like I've got makeup on. I use it more as a coverup for blotchiness and paleness.

Many women I know wouldn't leave the house without any on. I've even been told by one woman that I know "You know... you might be kinda pretty if you wore some makeup." I didn't even get a definately pretty, but whatever. Good thing I've never been very concerned what others think of me.

As for men, I don't know about all of them, but my boyfriend and his best friend openly hate makeup. They say they hate when women wear it and prefer women who are beautiful without all the fuss.

Samantha said...

I'm fifteen, and I never wear makeup, except for drama when it's required. I just never started wearing it. My mom doesn't wear makeup either, so I didn't grow up wanting to play with it and such. Idk, it just has always seemed unnecessary. Plus, I get up about five minutes before I leave the house, so there's not time for it in the morning.s