Glistening mirrors bounce rays of fluorescent light across the room. A wall of perfume sends floral fragrances floating through the air. Patrons glide through aisles, tattooed with colorful swatches of eyeshadows and lip shades. I can faintly hear a chorus of angels. This is a makeup store.
Makeup is an empowering, creative outlet for any person who wants to feel beautiful in any situation. Feeling confident? Rock that magenta lipstick. Feeling fierce? Wing your eyeliner. Feeling sad? Buy a new eyeshadow palette.
When I wear makeup, I do it for myself. I don’t spend $1000 per calendar year at Sephora for the satisfaction of random people I encounter day-to-day. I wear makeup to feel like the princess my mother always encouraged me to be.
On the opposite end of the eyeshadow spectrum, some days I roll out of bed and feel too lazy to even lift my Sigma E06 Winged Liner Brush. And that’s okay! Rocking a bare naked face should be just as acceptable as slaying a dramatic cat eye and bold lip color.
Maybe I should have spent an extra minute tweezing my caterpillar-eyebrows this morning. Maybe I should have concealed the duffel bags under my eyes. Maybe it doesn’t matter.
Makeup can enhance your features or hide your blemishes but the purpose of makeup isn’t to “trick” those around you into thinking you’re something different. It’s about expressing emotion, encouraging creativity and boosting confidence. If a smoky eye just so happens to cause a cute boy to ask for your number, that’s just an added bonus.
Despite common belief, makeup isn’t the defining factor of beauty standards. If you feel confident skipping the foundation today, that’s perfectly acceptable. If you love the look of a smoky eye, that’s fine too. You are the only one who can decide how beautiful you are.
Honestly, when deciding how much makeup I should wear, my opinion is the only one that matters. That’s how it should be. My makeup choices reflect my own self love and confidence. And if my sharply contoured cheekbones, lusciously pigmented lips and pristinely winged eyes don’t show that I’m feeling myself, I don’t know what will.
Story: Katie Dineen