This is one topic that I have been questioning its relevance in my daily life- Make up. And overtime I revisit this topic the questions that hang over my head are – Is a make up “look” sustainable? who is dictating these standards? How much do cosmetic companies stand to make from something they have managed to convince me that I need? Do I even really NEED this? Is it an extension of my expression or is it a cover up? If I have a mark, do I need to hide it or can I embrace the healing process ?
This week I found a quote that I have been reflecting on and it goes ….
” When a woman pretends to press her life down into a nice, tidy, little package, all she accomplishes is spring-loading all her vital energy down into a shadow of who she truly is .”- Clarissa Pinkola Estes.
Its interesting that, when we decide to reject the original part of our selves, or try to make ourselves ‘fit in’ / ‘perfect’, we also reject what keeps us wild and free.
And this post isn’t to put down the make up artists that enjoy the creative journey of make up. Im all about creativity… but only when it serves to fuel the freedom of myself and others.
Therefore the question posed to myself a few months ago was “Does make-up make me feel free?” That right there… began my exploration.
I thought back on the many times that I had been late to an important appointment because I was ‘making up’ or trying to look ‘good enough’ or ‘professional enough’. Truthfully the root of the issue was my own self worth. This was the shadow that I was working to try and hide.
I thought about how beauty was depicted in our society and how as women we are bombarded daily with advertisements of the ‘trendy eyes’, ‘right body type’, & ‘right face’ . Its pretty much a billion dollar industry – 62.42 billion to be exact according to statista. com. Not to mention all the numerous chemicals applied to our natural skin with each cosmetic product.
Even more interesting is a recent study….
A survey, which was conducted by Harris Interactive on behalf of The Renfrew Center Foundation, surveyed 1,292 women ages 18 and older and found that 44 percent of women experienced “negative feelings” when they weren’t wearing makeup: 16 percent reported that they felt unattractive; 14 percent responded that they felt self-conscious; and 14 percent admitted they felt naked or as though something was missing without makeup. ( Really ? )
Alarmed by the results, The Renfrew Center Foundation created the Barefaced & Beautiful, Without & Within Campaign (which launched in conjunction with National Eating Disorder Awareness Week) to start a dialogue about inner beauty and healthy body image and why it is that so many women feel so bad about themselves.
Therefore currently I’m making a stand about releasing the need to ‘make up’ anymore. And detox the competitive nature of the cosmetic industry that measures which woman is more beautifully done up than the next. Because the truth is that we are all different flavours of the same stew called – beauty.
Since my boycott I have decided to let my personality, humour, emotions and soul shine more. And Ive also taken it upon myself to show up more natural on a daily basis. (sometimes I just roll out of bed, take out the eye buggers and put on some clothes – & this is very freeing for me.) Sure, its a self- esteem cruncher, but it sure is building me into loving my natural self, blemishes, cycles, imperfections and all . And is sure takes practice to detox this societal norm, some days I feel better than others – depending on my emotional state. And thats okay.
Its been interesting shifting my perspective from other’s outer compliments into a truer sense of inner self worth, that is not only dependent on how ‘acceptably beautiful’ I am on a certain day.
And so I end with another one of Clarissa Pinkola’s Gems.
“Where there is a wound on the psyches and bodies of women, there is a corresponding wound at the same site in the culture itself, and on nature herself”
“So the wild issue is, does this body feel? does it have the right connection to pleasure, to heart, to soul, and to the wild ? “
How are you relating to the beauty standards of todays world ? feel free to share below.