A Natural Look


I randomly came across this article while article hopping around on the Sydney Morning Herald. Why do I always end up in the weird places? Nonetheless, I don’t know if I agree with this (personally):

Women have been trained since birth to primp and prime ourselves a certain way, so excuse the over-exaggerated eye roll when dudes turn around and say, "Hey, we actually prefer it when you go au natural!" As though the whole beauty industrial complex was our idea in the first place!

I don’t disagree with the fact that women have been trained, or at least been impressioned on by birth to present themselves a certain way - if it wasn’t the effect of the media and advertising then it’s something else telling women they need to be skinny, with flawless skin and flowing hair.

But I can disagree that all women have been trained to do this, because I personally never got an ounce of training on how to primp or prime. Which is why I still don’t really know what foundation or concealer is for, only barely can apply eye makeup and only started using hair conditioner a couple of months ago. Most of my life I’ve washed my face with just water, combed my hair with a comb and tried to lay it flat with water, used shampoo only to clean my hair (soap at times when I didn’t have shampoo), and worn a T-shirt and jeans.

Maybe that’s why nobody pays me much attention, and my self-confidence has not only hit the floor bit dived several feet under it.. if you use those units of measurement. Maybe that’s why despite admiring what seems to be everyone’s amazing hair mine has always looked frazzled.

As every woman knows – there's a vast difference between messy hair and no makeup and 'bedhead' and 'natural' makeup – about a few hundred dollars and 3,900 minutes a year difference, to take one conservative estimate.

That’s 65 hours a year, or 18 minutes or so a day on hair and makeup.

It takes me 15 minutes from my bed to out the door, including getting dressed and the usual morning activities, so if my hair is messy.. yes, that’s actual bedhead.

The trend of men praising women for keeping it 'natural' is dumb and hypocritical in a culture known for its unattainable beauty standards – and where women who wear makeup are shown to benefit both socially and economically over women who don't.

[A] survey by online dating website Zoosk [...] found that made-up women got three times more messages than women without makeup. Then there are those depressing research papers that say that women who wear makeup to work are perceived to be more competent, reliable and amiable – and are therefore more likely to score that promotion.

That hits a bit close to home though. When I first started looking for jobs in 2013, and again this year I started wearing skirts and putting on makeup. While before my approach was that I should represent myself as honestly as possible - I’m a pants and T-shirt kind of girl so I’m going to wear that - instead this time I tried to meet their expectations as far as I could with my limited wardrobe and makeup knowledge as I layered on mascara, eyeliner and foundation-used-as-concealer.

Hey presto, I got me a job. Maybe I should slap on more makeup to get a promotion then, but why is this even necessary when men can rock up to work in jeans and a T-shirt and look competent for their role?