Caked with Confidence: Celebrating Natural Beauty
I’ve never been one for following trends. I’m hesitant and reluctant to jump on fad band wagons. In fact, I refused to read The Hunger Games for this very reason. I didn’t want to conform.
And yet, here I am, promoting a trend. Why? Because this is something I feel passionate about. This is a band wagon that I can jump on with confidence. Not only that, but I will push this wagon if and when it runs out of fuel.
What is this wagon? you ask.
It’s the raw beauty trend — the #nomakeupselfiesthat are becoming more and more abundant on Twitter and Instagram. The wagon is filling up with young women who are bold enough to post pictures of their natural faces to social media, women who are gaining confidence in themselves without layers of makeup. To these women, I say kudos.
You might see their tired eyes, freckles, blemishes, acne. I see tenacity, freedom, boldness, authenticity. I see beauty.
I’m not so naive to believe that all the young women in these snapshots are completely confident in their own skin. Some might have run out of time to meticulously apply their makeup, others might be secretly looking for compliments. Nevertheless, I’m proud of them.
I root for girls like 20-year-old Annie Garau who challenge the belief that women need makeup to feel valuable. I applaud women like Leandra Medine who are comfortable with how they look, even if others don’t agree. I commend women like Molly Barker and Caitlin Boyle, who tackled the Naked Face Project in order to live out authentic beauty and challenge our country’s “confidence crisis.” These women do not hate their reflections in the mirror, but have come to accept the perks and flaws.
Why the cheering for these bare-faced women?
“Wearing makeup to enhance one’s appearance is normal in our society and often a rite of passage for young women,” says Adrienne Ressler, Renfrew Center’s national training director. “There is concern, however, when makeup no longer becomes a tool for enhancement but, rather, a security blanket that conceals negative feelings about one’s self-image and self-esteem.”
Impressionable 9-year-old girls should not feel that they need to put on makeup to be beautiful. 19-year-olds and 39-year-olds should not feel this way either. No one should feel this way. There should be no shame in natural beauty, no decrease in self worth when foundation and eyeliner are set aside.
So, what do we do?
Never buy into the lie that beauty only comes with makeup.
“A smile is the best makeup a girl can wear.” —Marilyn Monroe
Look in the mirror and tell yourself you’re beautiful. Don’t just say it; believe it. Put a sticky note there to remind yourself every morning. Spread the love and sticky notes to instill confidence in others.
“When women are constantly judging ourselves and each other solely on our appearance, how can we expect men not to? When women repeatedly look in the mirror and tell themselves that they are not good enough, how can we gain the confidence needed to become senators and CEOs?” —Annie Garau
Remember that physical appearance is not identity. Appreciate beautiful qualities in yourself and others: friendliness, compassion, discipline, courage, sincerity, optimism, spontaneity, etc.
“What you do, the way you think, makes you beautiful.” Scott Westerfeld
Be true to yourself. Maybe this means dabbing on some makeup here and there, maybe it’s being bare-faced 24/7, 365 days a year. Make your own decisions; don’t let others dictate your life for you.
“A rose can never be a sunflower, and a sunflower can never be a rose. All flowers are beautiful in their own way, and that’s like women, too.” —Miranda Kerr
Let joy line your eyes, laughter color your cheeks, and a smile coat your lips.
Be confident. You’re beautiful.
beautyhigh.com: 12 Surprising Statistics About the Beauty Industry
beutifulmagazine.com: 44% Of Women Are Dependent On Cosmetics For Self Esteem
dove.us: Surprising Self-Esteem Statistics
goodreads.com: Quotes About Beauty