“You wear too much makeup,” “you look beautiful without makeup,” “you don’t need makeup,” “I don’t like your makeup.”
All of this and more is said to me on an almost daily basis, all because I wear a full face of makeup.
My relationship with makeup started when I was a child: I would perouse my mother’s collection, lovingly swatching the various deep brown and gold eyeshadows, applying the many shades of brown lipstick—her signature colour; applying the luxury makeup that matched mom’s olive skin tone but was too dark for my pale skin.
In the early years of high school, I bought my own foundation that looked like a mask because I didn’t blend it down my neck. I indulged in wearing blue eyeshadow that I didn’t blend properly. Once I started learning more about makeup, I began wearing the right colour foundation, found the Maybelline Age Rewind concealer, and my go-to look was wearing black or metallic crayon eyeliner in my waterline. Thankfully, I never had a crazy blush phase. I worked as a makeup artist behind the scenes for various school productions: The Lion King, a version of Prom, various talent and fashion shows. Considering all these factors, I was always asked why I wore makeup, who I was trying to impress—I wasn’t trying to impress anyone, I just genuinely enjoyed it.
When I graduated high school and entered CEGEP, I mastered the natural makeup look but could bust out a smokey eye if need be. I admired people who could pull off elaborate looks for an 8 a.m. class and, soon enough, I became one of them. I began experimenting with different lipstick shades and living my best life looking like a glazed doughnut because of all the highlighter I used.
Before my first year of university, I started a YouTube channel to finally produce content like the type I consumed almost religiously: makeup and skincare videos. I reviewed new makeup that I bought, talked through my five-minute everyday makeup routine and my nightly cleanse routine and did a few hauls. I even did a “My dad does my makeup” challenge in which I was left literally looking like a clown—my dad didn’t understand the concept very well.
In my second year of university, I started going more days without wearing an ounce of makeup, not even mascara or anything to tame my eyebrows. I always liked my skin and knew I was blessed that it was clear and cooperative. I never had acne, and I rarely got individual pimples. This makeup hiatus—which I did because I started valuing sleep over doing my makeup—also came when I quit my channel because I simply did not have the time.
Recently, I bought the Morphe 35H palette, filled with plenty of blues, browns, pinks and reds. Since buying it, I’ve gotten back into wearing makeup daily. I like to create eye looks with all the fun colours I wear—glitter, smokiness and all. I’ve gotten a lot of comments like “your makeup is too intense,” “where do you think you’re going with all that makeup,” and, of course, “you don’t need makeup, you’re beautiful without anything.”
To all that I say: “mind your own business,” “to wherever I have to get to that day,” and “I know.” I don’t wear makeup to impress anyone, to cover up any insecurities, to show off, to get attention or to conform to how you think I should look. I will and I do wear a full face while also wearing a hoodie and sneakers—do you really think I do that to impress anyone? Makeup is supposed to be fun; it allows me to express myself, be creative and essentially paint a new picture every day without the fear of commitment. It washes off so I can apply it again—or not, because like I said, I don’t use makeup to cover up, so not wearing makeup is also a reality some days.
All of this is to say: leave people who wear a full face of makeup every day alone. We don’t do it for you and, unless it’s a compliment, we also likely don’t care what you think.
Photos by Laurence B. D