4 Oct

The past few days have been a blur of very little sleep and a whole lot of writing, headaches, self-doubt, flashes of inspiration, more writing, baby-tending, burnt-mac-and-cheese-cooking, procrastinating, motivating, and more writing. With not much time to spare, I decided to forego makeup.

And it turns out? The world did not end.

I was a bit anxious about it at first. I’ve always admired people who routinely don’t wear makeup but it’s been a long time since I went makeup-free myself. When I ventured out of the house, I considered throwing on some mascara, but out of both principle and time constraints, I resisted. And I began to question myself about why I felt the need to put on that mascara. How on earth would darker eyelashes help me in whatever I was trying to accomplish? Would it affect my interaction with people, or their opinion of me? Does their opinion of me based on my appearance affect my self-worth?

What helped me feel more comfortable in my own skin, what gave me power, was remembering my inherent self-worth. I thought of my closest relationships, and how none of the people I love would love me any less because of how I look.

My husband, for example: he loves, values, and respects me exactly as I am, with or without makeup. In fact, when I told him about this post, he admitted he did not even notice I hadn’t been wearing makeup. (I know, I am a lucky woman.) “I tend to think most women don’t need makeup,” he said.

Which basically proves one more way Clueless was, like, totally right:

clueless-1Anyway, the love of my husband and others helps me understand, in a small way, the love that my heavenly parents have for me.

Dieter F. Uchtdorf said in the recent women’s meeting of LDS general conference: “Do you suppose it matters to our Heavenly Father whether your makeup, clothes, hair, and nails are perfect? … Do you think outward attractiveness, your dress size, or popularity make the slightest difference in your worth to the One who created the universe? He loves you not only for who you are this very day, but also for the person of glory and light you have the potential and the desire to become. ”

We all know our culture reveres appearance, and that’s no more obvious than with celebrities. Somehow it is newsworthy, for example, that an actress would dare to go house-hunting makeup-free. Sigh.

But as we recognize our inherent self-worth and are confident in our appearance (with or without makeup), we can invest time and energy in other endeavors. As the women of Beauty Redefined put it:

“Our health, happiness, relationships, education and contributions to the world are damaged and stifled when we are dedicating a steady, invisible stream of mental and physical energy to monitoring and controlling our appearances.”

I’m not quitting makeup by any means, nor am I arguing that anyone else should (it’s your own decision anyway). Makeup can be fun. Makeup can help you feel more confident. It can even be empowering. It just also happens to be empowering to experiment with not wearing makeup.


P.S. I feel obliged to include this video as well. It’s always encouraging to see celebrities confront our culture’s unrealistic and skewed beauty ideals.


5 Responses to “Makeup-free”

  1. thelonekatie October 5, 2014 at 9:36 am #

    Welcome to the make-up free world! I can probably count the umber of times I have worn make-up in the last 3 years on one hand, and 80% of those times were just mascara to make my drooping, exhausted, mommy eyes look a little more alert. I think women wear make-up for other women, not men and not themselves. I find that if I want to look good it is better just to get more sleep, hydrate your body (drink water), hydrate your skin (moisturizer), and SMILE.

    • Holly October 5, 2014 at 7:51 pm #

      Katie, I was totally thinking of you as someone who rocks the makeup-free look. 🙂 All good advice too!

  2. Amanda October 5, 2014 at 9:53 am #

    I’m really enjoying your posts, Holly! Thanks so much!! I have the same internal debate about make-up all the time! The biggest reason I don’t wear it most days is because of time constraints. There are just so many other things to do! I also don’t want to give my daughters the impression that I have to wear make-up to leave the house or to be more beautiful. They watch me put on mascara or eye shadow (which is usually all I put on anyway), and they ask why I’m doing it. So I’m honest with my reasons- I have time to do it today; It makes my eyes look brighter and less-tired; It’s fun! But I don’t do it every day and I don’t make a big deal about insisting on putting it on. I would rather be on time for church, or a doctor’s appointment, or a lunch date with a friend, or I would rather have a few extra minutes to sit down and have breakfast with my kids or put a puzzle together with them on the floor, than to lose that same time in front of a mirror applying make-up that I’m just going to take off a few hours later anyway. Keep up the great mommy-ing, writing, and girl power-ing!

    • Holly October 5, 2014 at 7:50 pm #

      Thank YOU Amanda!! Your girls are so lucky to have you as an example!


  1. 31 days of GIRL POWER | spifftacular. - October 5, 2014

    […] Day 4: Makeup-free […]

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