NEW MAKEUP MONDAY: Screw Looking Natural and Slap It All On At Once!

Plus, how Amanda Lepore helped me embrace my own vanity.

Feb 27, 2012 at 1:00pm | Leave a comment

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"Are you going out after this?" Olivia asked when she stopped by my apartment last night. 

We were headed to Bryan's to live-blog the Oscars with Madeline, each of us dressed decidedly comfortable and casual. 

"Probably not," I said. "Why?"

"You're just wearing a ton of makeup, so I thought you were going out. It looks good though."

This is what I love about Olivia. Instead of staring in judgment, she actually says what she's thinking. Perfect for someone vain like me who lives for honest observations.  

She was right, I was wearing piles of makeup, something I've been doing since my acne has begun to clear up (a pimple will probably erupt just for writing this!). It might sound counterintuitive, but when my face was spotted with angry, red pimples, the last thing I wanted to do was mask the sometimes painful blemishes with foundation and concealer.

Instead, I went without makeup for months, waiting for my acne medications to kick in. I also sort of stopped going out, making excuses about being tired or wanting to save money, when truthfully I just didn't feel pretty or confident enough to meet new people.

It didn't matter how many friends claimed not to notice the massive breakout on my cheek or forehead (or both), I saw and it made me miserable. 

Now, while I still struggle with acne--Dr. Chapas injected two huge pimples last week--I'm generally pimple free. And so, like someone who has recently shed a ton of weight wearing a tiny dress, I'm eager to show off my results. For me, this means wearing a full face of makeup without having to worry about aggravating the skin underneath.
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I'm back to my pre-acne favorites: Armani Face Fabric, Bobbi Brown Concealer, Make Up For Ever HD Microfinish Powder, Shiseido Bronzer and it feels so good. The smooth, even, expensive looking skin that comes from finding the perfect cocktail of beauty products. I don't even want to look barefaced.

A few months ago The New York Times published "Up The Career Ladder, Lipstick In Hand," an examination of how wearing makeup affects both how we're perceived and how we feel.
It increases people’s perceptions of a woman’s likability, her competence and (provided she does not overdo it) her trustworthiness, according to a new study, which also confirmed what is obvious: that cosmetics boost a woman’s attractiveness.
No, this isn't groundbreaking stuff, but for me it's true. I won't speak for all women (or men) because presentation is a personal choice, but I do feel more likeable when I wear a full face of makeup--a 15 to 20 minute routine.

The final product is something admittedly Kardashian-inspired, and in complete opposition to the androgynous way that I dress. My madeup face gets compliments; I feel powerful and visible--there's no denying I am more attractive this way.

Unlike lots of beauty editors who (claim to) go barefaced, Cat wears the makeup she writes about as well. Lots of it. Maybe I get it from her. 

Anyway, I used to feel bad about being so enamored with physical beauty, but talking to Amanda Lepore (more to come from Cat) kind of eased that guilt. There's nothing wrong with taking pride in your physical appearance. In fact, neglecting your physical appearance can be a symptom of depression. For me, part of taking care of myself physically is wearing makeup--but that's me.

Do you wear makeup every day? What products make you feel your most beautiful? Or do you feel more confident going natural? Talk to me.

Follow Julie's pancake face on Twitter @JR_Schott.