A few weeks ago, I was sitting in the kitchen with my mom and sister. As usual I’m sitting quietly on my phone, in my own world and they are chit chatting away. The topic of the night was "what do you like about yourself?" I was very surprised to hear that they both had trouble answering this question. In fact, they sat in silence for a few seconds trying to find an answer. After a while, instead of describing something she liked about herself, my sister confessed that she really didn’t feel pretty without her makeup on. She felt her best after filling in her eyebrows and putting on a little eye liner. She felt so strongly about the matter, that as soon as she steps out of the shower, she immediately begins filling in her brows.
This conversation really sparked an interest in me because it prompted me to do some self reflection. I remember a time, not long ago, that I felt the same as my sister. I would always feel uncomfortable leaving the house with my bare face, even more-so when I would see my friends with their glowing, clear, and radiant skin. Being barefaced was something that I only allowed when I was alone or with VERY close friends and family. Now, looking back, I can see that one of the major issues that blocked me from being happy with my own face is because I spent so much time hiding what I didn’t like, instead of treating it. To this very day I will spend an hour on my makeup because it truly is one of my favorite things to do. For me, it’s relaxing and it’s the one part of my daily routine that I am sure will always turn out just right. My makeup is my fallback plan. It wasn’t until I started treating the things that made me uncomfortable about my bare face that I gained confidence in my natural beauty.
I realized that if the fail-proof fallback plan ever decided to stop working, I still have to love the face behind the makeup. Having this revelation taught me 3 very important things.
- Makeup is enhancer, not a miracle worker. Realizing that the reason I felt so beautiful with my makeup on was because the woman behind it was just as beautiful was the first key step for me learning how to take care of my skin.
- A clean, clear, canvas is the best canvas to paint on. Once I started taking care of my skin properly I realized my makeup looked better, it felt better on my skin, and my skin responded better to it throughout the day.
- A skincare routine works. It gives your skin the consistent care it needs for it to yield the results you want. I’m notorious for having great ideas and never implementing the follow through. I realized my skin would flare up the most when I would stop or change parts of my routine. It took some trial and error but eventually I figured out what worked for me. My finalized everyday skincare routine consists of:
- Wearing a primer as a way to prep my skin and serve as a barrier between my skin and the makeup (that we know I love so very much).
- Moisturizing my skin with a moisturizer that fits my skin type. I have very oily skin so I have to use light moisturizers instead of thick ones so that I don’t clog my pores (Again, more on this later).
- Using a toner on my skin to even out the imperfections and minimize my pores. This helps prep, smooth, and clean my face for the rest of my routine. I use witch hazel as a toner. (More to come on this in future blogs!)
- Washing my face every night and every morning, no matter what. Seriously, no matter what.
Having my epiphany and taking these steps helped me understand what the purpose of makeup was for me. Although the journey was long and scary, I rediscovered the beauty in myself, just the way God made me. In the end, developing this new outlook about makeup really helped me to find a healthier way to wear it, both spiritually and physically. Suddenly it didn’t feel like a chore leaving the house without my makeup, it felt like a choice. No my skin was not perfect, and no it still isn’t nearly close. And No. I’m NEVER going to stop wearing my makeup (lol seriously it’s my baby) but I do feel okay giving my face a break for 2-3 days out of the week.
Finding the time and patience to care for myself and my skin was what restored my natural radiance and continues to give me the guts to walk out of the house, imperfect skin and all. I know there are plenty of women out there like me or like my sister who are finding a hard time finding what they like about themselves, but if you look deep inside, there’s beauty in us all. Find yourself, love yourself, and commit to being true to who you are. It's time to GLOW.