Let me start off by saying: I’m not that girl.
You know the one: the girl who won’t go check the mail unless she’s primed, powdered and puckered. That’s just not me.
In fact, my normal makeup routine isn’t very grand. I often leave home wearing nothing at all on my face. I rarely wear concealer or false eyelashes because those items in particular make a person look so much better than normal that I can definitely see how they can become addictive.
With such a simple beauty regimen, I’ve been fascinated with Makeup Free Mondays since I learned about it.
I mean really, how difficult is it to take the cake—off for a day? I thought, “Makeup-free Monday is going to be a cinch. I go out without makeup all the time—no bigs.”
So, imagine my surprise when I noticed sheer panic when it was time for me to actually photograph myself and send in this photo of me sans makeup. In real life, I always go makeup-free, but for some reason, the WORLDWIDE web has me spooked.
Not wanting to be bested by the web, I bit the bullet and this activity led to an interesting discovery:
While I’m generally okay wearing no makeup, my feelings change depending on where my makeup-free face is displayed. The web changes everything.
Going without makeup to make a quick trip around the block is one thing, but to purposely remove everything and post a photo on a blog where people anywhere can see me “without my face” is completely different.
All of the clichés began running through my mind:
“You never get a second chance to make a first impression.”
“Image is everything.”
“Put your best face forward.” (I think this was originally “Put your best foot forward,” but the mind is a funny thing when it’s in panic mode.)
I cringed at the thought that someone who’s never met me could Google me and this may be their first impression of me.
It’s like my apartment. Sure, it gets messy: I may let a few dishes stay in the sink or not sort my socks until I’m ready and I’m okay with that. But when I know company’s coming, I clean—I want my place to be presentable to my guests, my audience—even if that sometimes means hiding all the unwashed dishes in the dishwasher and stuffing piles of unsorted clothes in a closet until the next day.
I approach my face in the same manner. I like my face, naturally. I accept the flaws, blemishes, the occasional zit. I have no qualms about leaving home barefaced any day of the week, but when it comes to first impressions in the online realm—where my 50×50 pixel icon is the only impression many will ever have of me—I care. I want to put my “best face forward.”
This exercise has been an awesome eye-opening experience. I had no clue that I would find it difficult to shed my makeup for a day.
I don’t have to wear makeup. I’m not an addict, but when it comes to presentation, I do want to at least look like I give a damn.
And honestly, as a chick that was heavily influenced by her 5 older brothers, I do find something fascinating and oddly comforting about the discovery that, underneath it all, I am that girl—at least part time.