How many of us have heard the phrase, “Real women are/do…” followed by what is usually nonsense? Often times these types of statements are about women’s bodies or presentation and how “real” women do or don’t do certain things to their bodies and should be commended for that. How about, “real women don’t degrade other women?” Today I want to talk about the beauty ideals surrounding makeup! There’s been this idea floating around that women who wear makeup are somehow less valuable, less authentic or less confident than women who don’t wear makeup. And that bothers me!
Recently, in the last few months, I’ve become very interested in makeup. I love watching makeup videos, observing contouring techniques (thanks Kim K!) and buying new products. This newfound hobby has not always been a part of my life though. I was once someone who believed that women who wore makeup were hiding their true selves, and maybe for some women, that is why they wear makeup, but makeup should be used to enhance one’s natural beauty not hide it. I used to trash talk girls at my school who caked on products because I felt like they were so insecure that they had to hide their faces. I am so ashamed of the person that I was, but I’ve learned with time that makeup is a mechanism by which women can flaunt their features and bring out specific traits that they want noticed. For example, I’m learning to love my lips and when I want to bring attention to them, I wear lipstick. Since the start of the summer, I’ve become a lipstick junkie. My collection is certainly small compared to true makeup gurus, but I’ve acquired quite a few shades that boldly enhance my lips and make them look pretty. This is not to say that I don’t like my lips without lipsticks and glosses; I like them so much that I want to show them off!
I’ve watched a lot of makeup transformation videos in that past few months that show how makeup can truly bring out one’s natural beauty. If someone has prominent cheek bones, highlights, bronzers and blushes are often used to enhance that feature. If someone has distinct, bright eyes, different eye shadows, liners and mascaras can bring out one’s eyes or eye color. With this perspective, I understand why so many women love makeup so much. It’s part of the reason that I have recently begun to invest time and energy (and some mulah) into my appearance with the use of makeup. I like the idea and concept of intensifying different facial features on any given day or occasion. Don’t get me wrong, my confidence doesn’t falter if I don’t have makeup on, but I can understand the women and girls who feel immensely more confident with a made-up face than a bare one.
There are many women with skin disorders or heavy acne who use makeup as a means of boosting their confidence because they don’t want to feel isolated due to something out of their control. Society often views individuals with skin issues in a negative light, and although our confidence shouldn’t be determined by society’s beauty standards, it is understandable, under certain circumstances, that some women may want to invest in various coverups and concealers to avoid judgement and negative attention.
With all of this being said, what I want you to take away from today’s blog is that, when it comes to makeup, you should do what makes you feel happy and feel your best. If you feel at your best and most confident with no makeup, a little makeup, or a face full of it, go for it! Makeup can be a great tool for some, but perhaps a “no thank you” for others and that’s okay! But don’t knock down someone else because their beauty routines don’t align with yours. Everyone feels confident in different ways and aspects of their lives and if makeup is yours, awesome! If not, awesome! As always, love yourself and your face because it’s yours!
According to our picture here, Pooh does not appear to be ready for the summer. How is he going to go into summer looking like that? Well Gigi, I kind of look like that! But I’m going to get my body looking right for the summer. That’s all good and fine to want to get in shape-- because let’s be honest, Pooh doesn’t appear to be in the best shape--but you shouldn’t have to feel like that just because its summertime. Of course the sweaters have come off to make room for tank tops and T-shirts, and the long, thick pants are packed away in exchange for capris and shorts, but why do we feel the need to suddenly go into “work-out-dieting overdrive” when the temperature rises? One could argue that society has conditioned us to believe that in order to wear warm-weather clothing, we have to shed our winter fat and begin all of these unhealthy, unrealistic diets to get that hot summer body. Would you believe me if I told you that a summer body is just your body?
I’ve noticed a trend in commercial advertisements that promote weight-loss products and gym memberships. Typically, right after New Years and also at the start of the summer, diet pills and work-out gear are at an all time high. Recently in my own inner circles, I’ve seen friends and family suddenly start exercising and eating less like there’s no tomorrow. Again, I think exercise and eating healthily are both very important and essential, but it should never be taken to the extreme that some take it to during the warmer months. The body that you were blessed with should not have to be drastically altered just because your arms or legs are showing more than they were a few months ago. You should love your body and treat it kindly no matter what the weather.
My body from this past Christmas versus my body as I type this article is virtually the same. I’m not going to deprive myself of the snacks and meals that I love (and I really love snacks) simply because I’m wearing a different outfit and less of me is covered. In past summers, I’ve felt so insecure about how toned my calves were or if my arms were flabby, but this summer, I’ve realized that strangers don’t actually care how other strangers look. Often, they are too self-absorbed in their own insecurities that they don’t notice the flaws that you may think are obvious. So just as I rocked my sweater dresses in the winter, I’m going to rock my sundresses in the summer. And I’m not going to concern myself with society’s preoccupation with the “summer body” nonsense. Your summer body is your everyday body and it’s beautiful because it’s yours!
Have you ever been in a fight? When I say fight I don’t mean an argument where there was yelling, screaming and cussing. I mean a real fight where fists were flying, weave was tossed around and it had to be broken up? That’s a real fight! Correction! That’s a real HOT mess, because ladies don’t fight. Well, we are not supposed to fight, not physically. What if I told you I could teach you a way to fight without using your hands or hurtful words? Allow me to let you in on a little something. When your friend makes you mad or when someone gets on your last nerve and you are two seconds from giving them a piece of your mind this is what you do…CHILL! Yes, chill! Take a breath, or two, or three or five, say a prayer and do nothing! In 2 Corinthians 10:4 "The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary they have divine power to demolish strongholds. For example, let’s say your friend said she was going to do come over and help you with a major project and she never did! You cancelled plans, and changed your whole schedule because your friend was going to come over and help you. She said she would be at your house at 10am sharp! 12pm, your friend hasn’t shown up yet. 2pm, no call, no show. 5pm, nothing! She finally calls you at 6:30pm and tells you that she missed her boyfriend so much that she just had to go and see him today! She shows up at your house at 9:00pm and crashes on the couch. You keep your cool up to this point but when you start to talk about your project she starts to fall asleep. In between her naps she yells, “Can’t you just shut up for about 30 minutes. I told you I would be here when I could and I’m here, but I’m really tired and your killing my vibe.”
What would you do? Snatching her by her hair and kicking her out of your house is not an option! Here is how you fight without laying a hand on your rude, careless and selfish friend. You take it to God in prayer. Pray to Jesus! She obviously is dealing with a lying spirit. The word of God tells us that our weapons are not carnal. You have weapons just not physical ones! You can’t see them or touch them. The weapons you have are prayer, praise and worship! Before you go to God for anything you should get in the habit of giving Him praise. Tell Him how great He is (praise)and thank Him for a few things in your life. Also, tell Him how much you love Him (worship). In this situation, you probably wouldn’t remember to give God praise and worship. Your first response would be to yell back. Instead you can say, “Help me Jesus.” I believe God will give you peace that will prevent you from going to jail. You will get your help (just remember to thank Him later).
In Deuteronomy 32:35 it says that vengeance belongs to God. That simply means that God will repay all of those who did you wrong, who hated on you, talked bad about you and even those who hit you. Sometimes He will even let you watch. But the point is DON’T SEEK REVENGE! Don’t try to attack or repay wrong behavior with more wrong behavior. Trust God! Put your confidence in God, knowing that He will fight your battles. Remember there is always a way of escape. You can walk away, pray, ask Jesus to give you strength! You have many options. Which one will you choose? It takes a strong, confident young lady to walk away from someone yelling and acting a complete and total fool. But guess what? You are a classy girl. You are a young lady who respects herself and her reputation No one can say that you are a wild monkey. You won’t get posted on World Star or Media Take Out.
I don’t mean to be cliché but LET GO AND LET GOD! Put your faith and hope in Jesus. There is nothing too hard for God. So the next time someone gets you to the point where you want to knock them out; fight with confidence by calling on God. Remember you have options!
*Don’t forget your confidence
PS. You are too cute to be fighting. ;-)