Being beautiful has always been paramount for women in our society. As technology becomes more and more prevalent in our society the pressure to be beautiful becomes stronger. It doesn't help that social media vomits out picture after picture of gorgeous women all of which have been altered to look Perfect. When you are a woman looking good is expected of you. It is even worse if you aren't white or skinny. You can get away with not shaving your legs or not wear makeup when you are white and thin. You can wear your 'PJs' all you want, and for the most part, people leave you alone.
Deciding not to wear makeup can also affect how much money you can make. Because performing femininity is precisely what the patriarchy wants from women: obedience. I'm going to briefly talk about my different experiences with makeup and how I feel about it.
When I was a teenager makeup was something semi-fun that I could enjoy. It opened a world of possibilities. Especially SFX or special effects makeup. Here I could finally put my enjoyment for scary, dark, and gross movies into a hobby. I spent a ridiculous amount of time learning how to give myself bruises or gorge my eyes out.
However, I all but ignored beauty makeup. I met a few new girlfriends and started to learn about beauty makeup. Although I will be honest: I still don't know how to contour, and I hate wearing foundation. Last year, I was a part of a student film doing the makeup, both SFX and beauty makeup. I met my boyfriend at that shoot. I had a wonderful time practicing my skills in real time and learning the behind the scenes of the filmmaking process. Afterward, my interest in makeup began to fade slowly. Seeing myself with a full face of beauty makeup wasn't interesting anymore. I still liked bruising myself, but outside of some cool avant-garde looks I just wasn't interested in wearing lipstick. I didn't see a decrease in my paycheck-because I didn't have one- nor did people seem to be respecting me any less. However, I saw myself putting on makeup every time I had an interview or needed to speak with a professor; as if my makeup would secure my spot in the scholarship over anyone else.
Here's the thing, wearing makeup isn't going to give me a leg up over men. It's going to give me a leg up over other women. No man is actually terrified of eyeliner sharp enough to kill a man. In fact, most men can't even tell when women are wearing makeup. Which is the point of Natural makeup: you are not supposed to tell if it is makeup or not.
In the end, I don't think I can tell anyone if they should or should not wear makeup. However, we as women need to be suspicious of there lies we're told. You do not need to wear makeup and your choice to wear makeup isn't a feminist one. You may do whatever you would like. But following along with what the patriarchy wants isn't changing how women are viewed. I don't know if I will ever be as in love with beauty makeup as I am with SFX. I don't know if I will go back to wearing makeup more often. But maybe there isn't a right answer.