My first personal challenge, you all know I love those. Some of you may think this is ridiculous, some may find it amazing! Whichever your opinion, I decided to attempt to wear #NoMakeup for 7 days. I have slowly embraced my natural skin this year, which has been easier than before due to more natural makeup trends. I grew out my brows which meant putting down the daily pencil filler, however letting my skin be natural in its own glory is not something I do overall on the regular! Read about my experience and how I felt day to day during this bare week. Followed by the reasons why I found it important to participate in this experiment in the first place! I’ll give you a hint, the influence and expectations set by none other than our beloved social media!
Day 1 – Sunday funday it begins. I don’t usually wear makeup on a lazy Sunday anyway, unless I’m going out. Today I went shopping and out to lunch without a care in the world! It was a great start to my week.
Day 2 – Today I tried a ‘Blaq Mask’ in the morning after the gym. It is one that you would have seen all over Instagram with multiple memes and ‘fails’. Yes it did hurt to pull off – but hey beauty is pain after all! It did leave my pore looking diminished but left me looking rather red which wasn’t very appealing 30 minutes before I was starting work. I put on a very light coverage – Laura Mercier foundation primer. This is similar formula to a tinted moisturizer that is marketed to be used as a primer. I set with a bit of powder, splash of blush and mascara. This would be my generic ‘no makeup’ makeup look for lazy days however only being day 2 I had obviously not yet fully committed to my 7 days bare! Many of you know by now my journeys usually turns out to be some sort of a roller-coaster anyway! So day 2 – fail.
Day 3 – I decided to do my skincare routine and just mascara. My face was glowing from the face oil serum and was very pale reflecting my natural skin colour. I wanted to wear mascara as one day at work I forgot to put on mascara and someone told me I looked albino. Within an hour of my working day the CEO had pulled me aside for a meeting. She begins to question if I’m feeling okay as it looks like I’ve been crying. FML. I laughed and said I was fine just reppin no makeup today. She asked why, could you not be bothered? I simply said I just didn’t want to. She then complimented me on my ‘fresh’ face!
Day 4 – No mascara! Albino or no albino I was stripping all and going fully bare. Today I used an exfoliant on my face in my morning shower before cleansing, toning and finishing off again with my face serum & oil. The bit of discolouration under my eyes bothered me today, making me eager to reach for some concealer but I refrain. Another woman at work today asked me what was different about me? I said you tell me but she couldn’t quite (or didn’t want to) pin point it. She said I looked a bit sad earlier but I reassured her I was just fine! This then commenced a discussion about how some celebs look ‘horrible’ without makeup. We both admitted it was horrible to even say, however this is of course because of how the media portrays them and we expect nothing less from those under the spotlight. Tried the blaq mask again tonight, so this time the redness would settle in my sleep!
Day 5 – I decided today I wanted to try and ditch the oil in my skin care routine, and finished off with the pixi glow tonic from Sephora instead. I didn’t overly love the feeling of the oil on my skin for a whole day, much different than when asleep overnight. Going bare gave me some extra time to myself this morning, meaning meal prepping for the day ahead, yay! Someone commented today asking me if I ate a lot of avocado? Of course I answered yes (spent the morning prepping avo for my lunch and dinner) she wasn’t surprised saying I have a lovely complexion *hair flick*. Tonight I realized how nice it was to not have to take any makeup off before bed, just some more skin care and some solid zzz’s.
Day 6 – Friyay! Appreciated once again my extra time in the morning. I caught a glimpse of myself in a mirror at work and actually thought to myself ‘hey your skin looks good!’ I remember in the past any sort of reflection while bare would leave me pulling faces at myself. Talk about increase in some healthy self-love! Today is 6 weeks until I leave and I actually had myself thinking- can I go bare overseas? But the photos! The social pressures! I didn’t dare in USA rockin my studio fix daily but I’m still working towards the idea for this time round.
Day 7 – The long awaited weekend returns once again. Plans with my girlfriends tonight means bareness isn’t an option. I still don’t have that extreme confidence or honestly find it necessary since, I must showcase my art at some point! I had a basic face throughout the day until the evening when the lashes were definitely on! So I guess day 7 was technically another fail, however I can honestly now say I could get used to my bare weekdays at work! Another thing I noticed today was my eyebrows. Not getting up close and personal daily while doing my makeup meant I missed a tweeze and two were slowly becoming one! My Saturday night glammed face felt extra special to apply as I did miss my makeup collection and brushes!
I have realized that wearing makeup is just as powerful as wearing none at all. I am an artist and there is nothing I love more than painting my face and of course my clients for their special occasions. This week I found myself questioning, why do I actually wear makeup? Usually the only time you would see me bare is when I’m sleeping or at F45! I generally wear makeup to work every day to cover impurities on my skin which I am self-conscious about. On weekends and special occasions I refrain no further than the longest, thickest lashes and highlighter that is blinding! I am also my own marketing tool as a makeup-artist, which means on the weekends when I’m out and about I find it important to showcase my work.
Most clients and friends say they struggle to even do an ‘everyday basic face’ of makeup, not to mention the full glam shebang! I am blessed to have this skill under my belt and can honestly say, practice makes perfect! Before this ‘experiment’ I believed going bare would increase my confidence in my own skin. I was feeling confused about why I wanted to do it in the first place, was I taking for granted my artistry skills? I think most people only go bare because they believe they can’t apply it properly themselves. I think it was a self-confidence thing, as I realized that some days I don’t even feel good about myself when I’m de-glammed with an ordinary face let alone bare.
Young women and men already have high expectations of how they should look. You all know about my relationship between social media and body image (if not click here to read ‘Obsessed’). However something that is just as important and effecting us in a very similar way is what I will call ‘face image’. I have literally had clients come to me with photos of Kim K saying ‘I want that smooth finish’. At the time that translated as a nice matte finish to me, however I am now aware of those lovely (not) airbrushing apps. These apps are of course free and available to anyone, giving us all higher expectations of ‘face image’.
As a makeup-artist myself I personally think it is quite ridiculous that other artists heavily edit the images of their clients as they are all contributing to the high expectations we see on social media. However, I believe I am now in minority, as everyday people are now editing their photos and artists are perhaps feeling forced to follow this trend. I am not forced to do anything but even I have personally felt the pressures of living up to the expectations us artists face. Personally I don’t want to provide any misleading marketing and prefer to base my business around ‘what you see is what you get!’
Each to their own and this is just my opinion. I still love a cheeky puppy dog or floral crown snap chat filter, although they are clearly smoothed and called ‘filters’ for a reason. Recently I was snap chatting with my niece who is 5 and she was obsessed with those cute ass smooth as butter filters. She was repeatedly saying how beautiful she was with her flower crown which made me laugh. It wasn’t until later on I began to think about this and thought, she is so beautiful with or without a stupid flower crown! It made me sad to think a 5 year old may only see her beauty this way. This isn’t me saying snap chat is evil and responsible for these thoughts or perceptions. I still love it and it is all fun and games. I am just now more aware of the effect a simple smooth face or eye sparkle can have on all of us, while it has increased the average standard of photos and selfies.
So really this experiment proved to myself that I’m still stuck in the middle. I have shared with you my personal experience during these 7 days and I understand some people have other skin problems fueling their insecurities such as allergies or pigmentation and that is fine! I guarantee this challenge would have had completely different results if I was experiencing a breakout – not to mention any allergic reactions or effects from ageing or sun damage.
To those who never wear makeup, don’t be afraid to try a smudged liner or bold lip here and there! To those who feel they need to cake it on everyday no matter where they are… ask yourself why? Are you feeling pressured by those around you, what you see on social media or struggling to meet expectations? Don’t be afraid to let your skin breathe and go bare! It was a very uplifting to be able to rock ‘me’ in my fresh skin. I didn’t have to worry about rubbing my eye, itching my nose or more importantly getting makeup on my man’s shirt! Not to mention the money on products you would save! It may not be smoothed to perfection and you may have a blemish or many but that’s okay. Believe me, you will rarely find an un-edited image professionally published. It doesn’t mean that is the reality everyday of your life, especially when at the gym sweating like a tap. However obviously for myself and many of you, makeup is a passion, hobby or occupation. So there is nothing wrong with lashing it up daily if you love the art and skill of applying makeup.
Whichever way you swing, glam or bare – rock it! If you’re sitting on the fence, try it! Either 7 days bare or glammed up! Soon I will be trying 7 days fully glammed, I wander if anyone will think I look sad then? We shall wait and see!
Next week: Loreal Paris Infallible Makeup range reviews