I want to start this off by noting that I have never really been into makeup and by no means do I typically wear a "full face." Normally, I only wear L'Oréal's Voluminous Lash Paradise mascara and Covergirl's Clean Invisible Concealer (shade Fair) as my daily makeup. Compared to many, that probably would be considered minimal makeup already, but I am no makeup artist and have never felt compelled to learn how to do an "intense" makeup routine. However, a week before I was meant to travel home for spring break, I realized my concealer had run out and that no matter how much I scraped the sides of the bottle anything that managed to go onto the brush would make no difference on my skin. As I had been to Target the weekend before saying "I didn't need to grab a new one" to myself as I passed the makeup section, I kind of slapped myself on the wrist since I actually really needed a new one. Luckily I had Maybelline's dream BB Pure beauty balm (shade 100 Light) that I could use as a light foundation for the week. However, this product is extremely lightweight and has minimal coverage compared to the concealer I use which had me a bit anxious as to whether or not it would actually do the trick.
My skin and complexion has always been an insecurity of mine since middle school and has always been something I've been conscious about covering up. I've always had more acne prone, oily skin and since I'm always active as well my skin rarely is completely clear. Growing up too, many of my friends did have clearer skin than me, so I usually felt self-conscious about my own. It's possible that this insecurity just came naturally with age or with social media or from comments or internal critiques. But no matter how insecure I am about my skin, it's something I want to be more open about and work on being more confident with. So I decided I would take this chance to document each day how well the makeup change was working for me, how my skin was looking, how I was feeling about my skin, etc.
The Weekend Before: I realized my concealer had done its time and no matter how much I tried to make the brush scrape the sides of the container, it had no effect. With a week left of classes before spring break, I figured I could survive using less makeup for a week before buying more over break. My skin had started clearing up and I felt confident wearing little to no makeup the entire weekend unlike in the past when I felt the need to put on a "full face" just to go get some food. So the weekend was not an issue as far as makeup or my skin was concerned. It actually felt freeing. Even when my face tends to get oily toward the end of the day, which usually irritates me and makes me self-conscious, it felt healthy and not as if the longer I went without washing my face the worse my skin could be the next day.
Day one (Monday): Today was a good skin day overall. For the most part, I don't have any red spots that would draw attention and would usually cause me to stress in the morning when I endlessly would try to cover up any signs with concealer. But since I can only use the light coverage foundation I have left, there isn't much I can do when it comes to covering specific spots. Luckily I was feeling confident in my skin and overall was loving the minimalistic look (although on normal days I consider my makeup routine quite minimal compared to most).
By the end of the day, my skin was oily per usual and I was starting to get that grimy feeling where it makes me feel the need to wash my face as soon as humanly possible. But also this feeling wasn't as heightened as it usually is. Also, near the end of the day, and when washing my face, I began noticing possibly spots that normally don't worry me because I know I'll have my concealer to hide any redness in the morning; however since I don't have my thicker coverage concealer this week, there are some anxious feelings and insecurities starting to surface at the notion that my skin won't stay clear this week. But washing my face, especially after a long day, helped me feel refreshed and brand new. Fresh face, fresh mind!
Day two (Tuesday): I wasn't preoccupied with my skin today! Mainly because I was worrying about midterms and doing some work before spring break starts. But my face didn't feel super oily today and overall I felt like my complexion looked more even today. The lightweight foundation I've been using is said to help with your skin and after a few days of only using it, I feel like my skin is doing a bit better than usual - even though this week, so far, has been a good skin week.
Day three (Wednesday): Today was uneventful skin-wise which is good. It did feel a little oily, but it does seem like the makeup I have been using is making my complexion better and more even. And I'm finding that I'm enjoying the feel of lighter weight makeup. However, my skin is usually more acne prone and probably wouldn't be able to have full coverage with this product for those types of weeks. I'm still trying to find a happy medium and, of course, I would love to be able to maintain this clear of skin, but, you know, life happens.
Day four (Thursday): My skin was oily and the beginning of some spots were appearing, but I'm not stressing about them as I only began noticing them at the end of the day. Today was busy with classes, packing for spring break, homework, and other priorities like working out, so I wasn't dwelling on what my skin was looking like.
Day five (Friday): When I woke up, those beginning blemishes were less visible so I wasn't worried about those today. Also, I was driving home for spring break for most of the day so I wasn't conscious about how well, or bad, my skin was looking as I knew I would be my own company. By the end of the day though my skin was quite oily and had that gross feeling that you get after a long day of traveling. My complexion was still pretty even, but the oiliness of it made me feel more self-conscious than I had been earlier in the week when it became oily. And how I feel about my skin and confidence definitely depends on who I am around too.
Day six (Saturday): Of course after traveling, the skin usually takes a big hit as I noticed more noticeable spots this morning that are not as easily hidden by the thin layer of makeup I have at my disposal. At first, this made me feel anxious about going out in public as I felt less confident and more self-conscious about my skin; however, I am working on my self-confidence (everyone has something they don't always feel 100% about) and something I always keep in the back of my head is something one of my favorite YouTubers (Sarah's Day) constantly says "Act confident and no one will question you." Although, today I was running errands and on the go a lot so I quickly became preoccupied with other things. And, even though it was a long day running around, my skin managed to not be excessively oily by the end of the day which helped ease some of the anxious thoughts from earlier in the day (hindsight bias). Today was also the day I was able to buy new makeup and therefore marks the end of this week of limited makeup.
After this little experiment of mine, I feel like I have noticed a lot about myself and gave myself a better insight into why I personally wear makeup, and why others might as well. Basically, looking back on this week, I've noticed that creating this article around a situation I usually would have stressed about all week made this "experience" a little less intimidating. I made a stressful situation, or burden, into an opportunity to take everything one day as it comes and as it is. Being conscious and reflecting each day on something that I'm usually self-conscious about has helped me realize that I normally shouldn't feel as anxious as I do about it and this week has put a lot into perspective for me. It has helped me appreciate my good skin days more instead of focusing on the little imperfections that make me feel insecure (but honestly are less noticeable to others). It also has influenced me to put more focus on having a healthy skin care routine, or lifestyle, by drinking more water and doing other things to keep my skin clear.
I noticed throughout the week that I tend to be more critical about my skin situation more than I should. There is so much critiquing of ourselves and others nowadays where everything tries to emulate an idea of "Perfect" but perfect isn't what life is all about and even if something seems perfect there are always hidden imperfections to be found. Typically, I say I surround myself with positivity in a negative world. After this week I've realized that I can surround myself with all the positivity in the world, but none of that matters if there is negativity inside me. I pretend to have a grip on my insecurities and not obsessing over things I cannot change, but looking at my daily reflections from this week there is still work to be done.
We all have insecurities and my skin has always been one of mine (and probably still will for a long time), but there should be no reason for us to feel insecure. There are so many platforms and influences that will keep trying to tell our subconscious' that we need to change to be more like something or someone else. But we don't. We are already who we're supposed to be and that is our "Perfect." Most of us probably have people we look up to or admire or what to be like or look like to the point where we don't recognize that we are great just being us. There could be someone who feels that way toward you, but you don't even realize that being you is something someone else would want to be.
We all need to start noticing and appreciating and owning our worth. Even if it's one thing at a time, there are millions of things to love about each and every one of us. We may not love it now. We may despise it and try everything we can to change or hide it. We may tear ourselves apart over it. But what we don't do is take what we have and love the best of it, take time to appreciate it, notice it's not as bad as you thought. We don't embrace it and live as confidently as we should. Even if that means you have to wear less makeup for a week to realize that your skin isn't something you need to hide and remake for the world.
Life shouldn't be about fixing what isn't broken. We never have to feel "just fine." We should always feel like we can live as confidently as those people we admire because it is inside all of us just waiting for the chance to be accepted. The world can't wait for You to start being fully You.