By: Christina Mazziotta
Have you ever been in a relationship where you felt like you get so involved in the other person that you start to lose your own identity? It’s the same as caking on makeup every day. It’s exhausting!
The constant need to feel like you have to swipe on mascara, conceal every inch of your face, and plaster on the powder is finally over! Much like a relationship it can be healthy to cut ties and give your skin a break. So it’s time to give your skin a breakup from the makeup.
The newest trend is going makeup-free thanks to the infamous Alicia Keys. The Grammy winning actress broke the internet at the 2016 MTV Video Music Awards when she went makeup free. It was a statement that started the #NoMakeup movement in which Keys said she wouldn’t be wearing makeup for the next upcoming months even while on TV for The Voice. In an essay for Lena Dunham’s Lenny Letter she wrote, “…I don’t want to cover up anymore. Not my face, not my mind, not my soul, not my thoughts, not my dreams, not my struggles, not my emotional growth. Nothing.” Her makeup free face has made a statement beyond the makeup aspect, but instead urging women to do it for their inner health and beauty.
With many saying that not wearing makeup was an initial fear, they agreed that this meant more than just baring their skin.
Pictured Above: Freshman Kendall Henderson
Elon Students Baring it All
After becoming inspired by this new inner beauty trend I decided to ask students of Elon what they thought about this new trend. Freshman Kendall Henderson said, “I think it’s great. It’s important for women to be able to embrace their imperfections and flaws by going makeup free.”
For many women the idea of going makeup free can make them feel very vulnerable. You put your face on display for everyone to see, and every little scar or blemish on your face is served on a silver platter for everyone to critique.
Although it can be scary many said that after taking the leap they felt empowered. Pictured below Kristen Leechow said, “As much as I love using makeup and the safety blanket it provides to hide my acne scarring I know it’s more important to love myself as I am and take care of my skin.” It’s not just about what other people think, but it’s about accepting yourself and overlooking those imperfections and realizing that there is more to you then just a mask of makeup. Makeup can be great way to enhance a person’s skin, but it’s just as important to let yourself breathe and recognize that you are just as beautiful on the inside as you are on the outside.
Pictured Top Left: Kristin Leechow, Bottom Left: Zoe Ashburn, Top to Bottom Right: Maeve Riley, Meaghan Elizabeth, and Natalie Berman.
Clean Skin, Full Heart, Can’t Lose!
It’s easy to get attached to your most prized makeup products, but don’t underestimate the power of no product at all.
Makeup is strong because it can totally transform a person’s face, but for many people they put it on out of habit and forget to love what’s underneath those layers of makeup. Makeup is great. But in our generation we focus so much on what we look like on the outside, that we begin to lose our true identity.
It’s inevitable that we subconsciously focus on the little things like what color eyeliner will make our eyes pop or how to conceal that pimple that we think looks like the size of Mount Everest. Coming to terms with acknowledging those small things is the first step to accepting that you don’t need that concealer and eyeliner every day to feel or look good.
For many of us we forget that just because we might be obsessing over that zit from the night before doesn’t mean that anyone else is going to notice. Our skin worries are internalized, therefore making it seem like they are so much bigger of an issue than they are in reality.
Insecurities are so common and as young women we are so harsh on ourselves. But letting your skin breathe should be the same habit as drinking water every day or eating a nutritious meal. We need to be mindful and take care of our skin just like we take care of the rest of our body, because ultimately our inner health will thank you.
Mind, Body, and Soul
Be kind. Be gentle. Be forgiving. Give your skin a break! In our generation perfection is something we strive for. Perfect clothes, perfect hair, and perfect skin. But what happened to just being enough?
Makeup has become a barrier that we hide behind, a shell that fakes flawlessness, and beauty that’s almost unrecognizable to who we are. But with the constant days of looking a certain way we begin to forget what we really look like.
The sense of relief we get when wiping away the days’ worth of makeup is like nothing else, yet we hide the rawness from the rest of the world. Why? Because we are scared of judgement. Exposure of our truest selves is intimidating.
In order to be fearless of judgement we need to be at peace with ourselves. For example, acne. It happens to the best of us. Hormonal, cystic, bacterial. It’s like the monster hiding in the closet. You know it’s there but it never goes away, and no one talks about it. We feel embarrassed to see it, and feel shamed thinking others notice it.
Challenge yourself to look in the mirror. See those acne scars and tell yourself “it’s OK.” Everyone is human, each with their own insecurities or frustrations. Spreading positivity to yourself is the first act of putting yourself at peace with your identity and self-worth.
Take pride in your appearance, be kind to yourself and allow yourself the freedom of being imperfectly perfect no matter what you look like. Although there is always going to be a new makeup trend, the benefits of letting your skin breathe are endless and even more important.