As a makeup junkie, I love buying makeup and wearing makeup just as much as the next girl. I love the thrill that comes with buying a new product or learning new techniques that improve my makeup application. Makeup is a form of creativity and self-expression, and it can be empowering because it gives us some control over our appearance. There’s so much inspiration for creative inspiration on beauty blogs – which is the reason I’ve been dipping my toes into the beauty world of Instagram.
But as I delve further and further into this world, the more I realize that makeup is a double-edged sword.
[bctt tweet=”Makeup is a double-edged sword.” username=”wearethetempest”]
I’m not ashamed to admit that I’m addicted to watching beauty gurus’ videos on YouTube and stalking the best makeup accounts on Instagram (shout out to @anastasiabeverlyhills and @hudabeauty for taking up hours of my day).
But it was on one of these Instagram stalking sprees that I came across a video shared by Huda Beauty captioned “leg contouring for slimmer legs.” The video showed an intricate pattern of contour, highlight, and blush colored lines covering the entire leg area before being blended out. “You’ve got to be kidding me,” I thought. “There’s no way people spend time doing this.”
It wasn’t long after before more body contouring videos were going around – videos like “neckline contouring,” “butt contouring,” and “fake having bigger boobs.” The more I see of these videos, the more I can’t help but wonder if makeup is starting to go in the wrong direction.
Makeup began as a way to enhance a person’s natural beauty and to make us feel beautiful in our own skin. But lately, the current makeup trends make us feel as if our own skin is not enough. On one hand, makeup gives us the power to manipulate our appearance to become what we want it to be, but on the other hand, it is creating even more pressure for women to fit into a certain category of appearance to feel beautiful and spend hours upon hours perfecting the right look.
[bctt tweet=” Current makeup trends make us feel as if our own skin is not enough.” username=”wearethetempest”]
After all, the women with the highest cheekbones, thickest lashes, biggest eyes, most arched brows, smallest nose and plumpest lips are the most beautiful, right?
[bctt tweet=”Makeup is creative, and that’s what I love about it. ” username=”wearethetempest”]
The most popular makeup trends involve changing the entire shape and appearance of our features to fit this mold of beauty. Sure, everyone has their own insecurities about certain features or body parts, and I’m no exception to this. But as great as it is to be able to “fix” a part of us that we may be insecure about, it almost makes me feel as if I have to look a certain way to be beautiful, and I’m sure I’m not the only one who feels that way.
Take the over-lining the lip trend, for example. Since it became a trend, most beauty icons have started getting lip fillers, and it’s become more and more widespread.
I don’t even want to imagine what “neck-contouring” and “butt-contouring” will make people want to do.
[bctt tweet=”If people want to get a procedure done to feel better in their skin, good for them.” username=”wearethetempest”]
As a freelance makeup artist, I get a lot of joy out of doing my own as well as others’ makeup; I’ve seen the confidence boost it gives people when they look and feel their best. And if people want to get a procedure done to feel better in their skin, good for them.
But they shouldn’t feel the need to do so because of some beauty trend.
Makeup is creative, and that’s what I love about it. But when it goes as far as glorifying certain body and face types, maybe it’s time to rethink what the goal is. It’s a good idea to take a step back every now and then and realize that at the end of the day, makeup comes off and we’re left with ourselves.
And it’s important to love and appreciate that person, too.