Tag Archives: my thoughts

Illuminating Our Perfection, or Purposeful Deception?

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I got an email the other day that had me thinking about the significance of makeup, especially in my life. She asked how I felt about the accusations that using makeup is a deceptive way that women represent themselves. I figured I’d respond to this publicly because I feel that it is essential to my readers to understand why I write what I write and the role that makeup plays for me personally.

Let’s start with a little personal history! I’ve gotten on a beauty kick lately more so than ever. I’m really loving experimenting with makeup and different products ever since I visited Ulta and later got an Ipsy subscription, which delivers new, varying beauty products every month for only $10, making it pretty much impossible for a girl like me to refuse. My love for using makeup has been a consistent love. I remember, as a young child, I used to carry around one of those caboodle carrying cases full of makeup and sit around with my friends and create “makeovers”. Sure, they probably weren’t as aesthetically pleasing then as they’d be now (I’ve learned at least some skills since those days), but even then I understood what makeup meant to me. I loved using it because makeup is artistic as well as purposeful.

I see so many comments on the pages, videos, and posts of beauty bloggers by men (and some women) saying that makeup is deceptive and that it hides one’s natural flaws, making the individual more attractive than they actually are, attracting individuals who apparently think they naturally look flawless. Ahh. Let’s get this straight here. Makeup enhances one’s beauty and gives the individual the ability to exemplify certain physical traits while toning down traits they see as less desirable or bothersome. That’s not deceptive. It’s something that we, as humans, do similarly with many things. We always want to put our best traits forward, whether it’s for a job interview, a first date, whichever. Makeup is something that allows women to accentuate their best physical features.

Some women, like myself, also use makeup as a way to conceal acne scars in order to be more comfortable and confident in their own skin and especially in face to face social situations. For me, I focus immensely on the base of the makeup look: the foundation. I have had severe acne for the majority of my young adult to adult life and it has left me with unsightly, discolored scars that I don’t always like to leave bare. It’s a sensitive thing for me, having others ask about the permanent marks that were left on my face from these years, so I find that knowing how to apply my makeup effectively gives me a major confidence boost. Others aren’t looking for scars, but rather social queues on my face, which is a nice change of pace. I could imagine many others apply makeup for the same reasons. They would rather reduce the distraction of little flaws and feel comfortable and confident in their own skin than go out, barefaced, knowing that the uncomfortableness will ultimately hinder them. I remember feeling like I was going to cry every time I’d look in the mirror and see how badly my skin had gotten. Makeup gives the individual the freedom to look glamorous and to feel beautiful, acne scars or not. It’s more so for the individual’s sake than for any outside force, meaning that the use of makeup isn’t as much for “deception” as many like to call it, but for the expression of illuminating one’s perceived best features in vibrant, inspired new ways, neutralizing the flaws we have that chip at our confidence.

Makeup is enjoyable for me. I love to be able to have a clean canvas to create new looks every day and to experiment with different color palettes. I can change my look to fit my outfit, my mood, anything I desire. I honestly think using makeup is as “deceptive” as a woman looking beautiful in nice clothes. Is that deception too, because she’s not spotlighting the bumps and rolls that are just a natural part of her figure, but finding pieces that illuminate her best assets?
Realistically speaking, how is makeup any more deceiving?
Why should I not feel comfortable in my own skin?

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“The Question Is, Are You Happy?”

I find myself going through my daily routine, engulfed by my own thoughts about what it feels like to be “happy”. I remember being happy. Happy was me at Warped Tour, swaying to the beat of some newly discovered bands and realizing how much I adored the sound of something new gracing my ears. Happy was when I sat on the beach with my mom, coffee in hand and gnat-bitten to death, awaiting the arrival of a new sunrise on the shore. Happy was when I heard one of my favorite songs on the radio like I had millions of times before, but this time, managed to belt out all the words as loud as I could with the windows down, completely shamelessly. I know “happy”. Happy has always been a good friend of mine, but has slowly drifted from my grasp as of late. He’s become someone who sends a card on only the holidays signed with just his name, someone who pops in and says “hello” but never actually takes the time to truly absorb my answers, to question the strange intonations of my responses. He’s someone that has mistakenly forgotten to return my calls, tragically missed my texts, and has found new places and people to foster his sparks. Happiness has become an acquaintance, even more so a stranger. As of late.

The question is, am I happy? Am I happy now, at this very moment in time and my life?

I feel like my questioning confirms my answer enough.

“You’re only as strong as your weakest link”

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Which is actually great because the people in my life, in this current moment, are the strongest, most driven people I know. They amaze me in millions of ways. The few people I consider good friends at this point continually prove to me that their strength lies in loyalty, honesty, and the ability to be who they are in the sight of those who wish they were different. They’re my breath of fresh air and motivate me to be the best individual I can be, from the inside, out. Thank you.

Think about all the people that continually impact your life. Take a moment to really let them know that they matter. We, as people, like to know when our existence in someone else’s life is significant, and the harsh truth of the matter is that we never really know when our time in this world is up, so if we don’t make a conscious effort to do these things as they arise, we may never get the chance. Give someone some good, honest truths today.

Mandy

Update: Tomorrow, I will have a KILLER, SUPER AWESOME goodwill haul up for you guys!

But until then, feel welcome to check out the videos I have already released, leave comments, and subscribe!

I’m trying to get into the whole daily vlogging thing! We’ll see how that goes 😉

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCqy2eL07SETdkJF9pe0OUzQ

Seeing What Isn’t There

Every time I’m doing something, I start seeing things moving at the corner of my eye, only to realize that when I actually look at them, nothing is moving at all. Maybe I’ve got some crazy in me.

Daily Writing Prompt: What’s the one thing you hope other people never say about you?

This prompt actually gives me a sinking feeling in my stomach, because nobody likes to feel like people are criticizing them for who they are. I certainly don’t. As much as I wish people didn’t say hurtful things about each other, I know it’s inevitable. With that being said, I would hope that no one would call me selfish again. Yes, again. The first time someone said that to me completely changed my perception of myself as well as others. I began reevaluating all of the acts I had committed in the weeks prior to that, how I had interacted with other people, and what I had been doing to my friendships to end up with such a piercing word lingering at the mouth of someone I thought I had always treated as greatly as I had myself. She was right. I was being selfish, and I was repulsed by it. But this was a couple of years ago. Fast forwarding to the here and now, I’ve learned from that. It sucked being told such a painful truth from someone that I admired, but it was a truth, and I used it to make myself better. I’ve learned to be more conscious about my motives and more honest about what I need and what I’m willing to give. Being called “selfish” empowered me to change my ways, to redirect my focus to those around me and slightly minimize my own concerns in the process. Some people say that you should keep yourself at an equal level to others when figuring out what’s important, but I think lowering myself down a tad more than everyone around me made me more perceptive towards the needs of my friends and peers. I needed that wake-up call to give my friends a friend that they could rely on, which they deserved, and at the time, I had forgotten how to do. That thought always lingers in my mind, even today. I just needed a shove in the right direction to improve my ability to consider others as if they were myself. I would never want to be called “selfish” again.

Now let me ask you this, my darling reader. What is one thing you hope other people would never say about you? Have you said the same things to others, and how has that affected them in the long run, do you think? How have labels helped you become the person who you are today?

Thought List of April 16, 2014

1. Is that coffee in the fridge still good? Or did I seriously just waste the last bit of creamer in my fridge, upping the potential of a final’s week meltdown?

2. One step outside this morning, and I felt like my toes were going to fall off. It’s best if I don’t lose my toes before finals week.

3. It’s weird having a schedule where I’m basically finished by 12:00 PM, because then everyone’s still in class, and I’m just straight chillin’, waiting for someone else to say that their class got canceled.

4. Where did all my napkins disappear to, anyway? Seriously, I know you’re a mess, but chill with that.

5. I think the name “teriyaki” should be changed to “teriyummy”. Let’s be honest. The name is misleading.

6. If I rolled off of my bed right now, I’m pretty sure I could break something. I think I should put “mountain climber” on my resume because of this. Climbing this bed is an adventure.

7. One of my toes refuses to be a team player.

8. I think all the COM majors in this class are perfect for their major, because they NEVER STOP TALKING.

9. Bikes are probably the best and the worst thing to ever happen to college campuses.

10. I’m playing with the idea of turning a blip of my writing into a novel.