There are days when I don’t leave my house, other than to pick up the baby from daycare; before Eli was born, there were days I didn’t leave the house at all. Working from home can sometimes feel lonely and isolating. Add to that the early mornings (Eli, seriously, please sleep!), it’s easy to feel like a greasy slob. Even before I started working again, the one thing I prioritized for myself was a hot shower. It’s taken months, but I finally feel that I am emerging from the haze of new-parenthood. Obviously, part of that haze was due to sleep deprivation; part of it we owe thanks to postpartum depression and anxiety; but I also think that fog stems from feeling so unlike myself. It’s disorienting when everything feels different.
Hot showers made me feel human. Makeup helps me feel like a a million bucks.
It’s not about hiding flaws. Nor is it about looking like someone else. It’s about taking time to do something I enjoy. It’s about staring at my face in the mirror. It’s an exercise in artistry (and if you don’t think makeup requires artistry, oooooh boy, give it a try), in color, in sparkle and shine. It’s about feeling glamorous and pretty. It’s about catching my reflection in any shiny surface and thinking, “hot damn, I look fine.”
I spent most of high school and university trying to get makeup to cover up my redness. Leaving Ulta one day, I realized that I had camouflaged all of my freckles, foundation caked on so thick that there was no trace of color. I used makeup to hide, to blend in.
I’ve seen a lot of criticism of the “selfie generation” for being too self-absorbed. That’s a pretty fundamental misunderstanding of the power of selfies, in my opinion. I don’t see round faces like mine represented in mainstream media, other than maybe in ads for weight loss. Looking through so many frames of my face, I’ve come to love it even more. Look at that highlight on my cheekbone! Do you see that eyeliner – YAS! I’ve come to think of makeup and the accompanying selfies as a chance to really look at myself and love myself. Yes, it’s about the way I look. But the way I perceived my body caused so much shame and hurt in the past – I deserve to look at myself and like what I see.
Of course, not every day is a full glam makeup day. Some days, it’s just sunscreen and smiles.
PS: I’ve been using this NYX palette all spring and summer. It’s so bright and fun, and you can buy it at Target, my home away from home.[I bought this]