The history of the use of cosmetics dates back to possibly over 100,000 years ago beginning with cave men and women and their use of red ochre paint on their bodies; whether it was for enhancment purposes or pure enjoyment we will never know, but it is believed to have sparked the earliest form of a “cosmetics trend.” Archaeologists have found evidence of the ancient Egyptians using protective skin balms and eye creams, the Greeks dabbling in cosmetics and “painting their eyelids”, and the Romans whitening their skin with lead based formulas and using kohl as an eyeliner. It is quite unsettling to me that cosmetic trends and the “need” to be beautiful dates all the way back to the beginning of time and has increased tenfold over the decades.

Now you’re probably all thinking, “but you’re a makeup artist? You are a HUGE part of the beauty industry. Why are you belittling it?” I may be pursuing a career in the beauty industry, but unlike the industry itself I am not here to focus on vanity and what products you are in “dire” need of; I am here to rock the status quo and showcase my artwork while preaching my wisdom to women and men of all kinds… YOU DO NOT NEED COSMETICS TO BE BEAUTIFUL. Cosmetics should be fun to play around with and yes, they are used to enhance your NATURAL BEAUTY, but I strongly disagree with the individuals who say they cannot leave the house without them. I feel statements such as “but I need my makeup,” “I can’t leave without my makeup,” “I am hideous without my makeup,” etc. are ignorance at its finest and next time you find yourself about to make one of these remarks stop yourself and think about what you are truly saying. Let this sink in, most of us spent our childhood/young adult lives without makeup and it never registered as an issue until we grew old enough to notice those fancy magazine ads with the beautiful models and the toxic (yet flowery) words the media forced into our brains.

The beauty industry, just like any large corporation, is truly evil and feeds off of the insecurities and weaknesses of the public. The photos I included above are advertisements from the 1920’s-2014 and notice how none of them focus on enhancing your natural beauty and being naturally comfortable in your skin, but pointing out your imperfections and how you are not a “force of beauty” unless you’re wearing their products. I have succumb to advertisements like these many, many times and it was only when I created ties with models, photographers, beauty consumers, etc. in this industry that I realized I need to stand up and use my voice to push for change. The world we live in needs to be altered in many aspects, but we can start by taking small steps to refine and love ourselves. My mother always told me, “if you can’t love yourself then how do you expect to love anyone else?” and I continue to revert back to that statement whenever I am feeling incredibly down on myself or not appreciating what I was blessed with at birth. We are given feet, hands, opposable thumbs, eyes, ears! Instead of dwelling on how to enhance your features, focus on what you were given and learn to love it and put it to good use.

Use your hands to create art forms such as I do; the face is my canvas and I find it a magnificent one at that whether it be bare or covered in green shadow and metallic paint. Use your feet and walk outside your front door to experience life, your mouth to exchange kind words with a stranger or speak something of intellect and wisdom, and your eyes to appreciate all the beauty which is right in front of our faces and is at such a convenience. If I can touch at least one person with the message I have as a makeup artist then I have done my job and I can live happily knowing that much.

Let life take its course and don’t focus so much on altering your appearance as you age. You spend most of your life searching for an identity and most of us throw it all away once we start making these vain adjustments based on how society is supposed to perceive us. Don’t let all that hard work go down the drain; love yourself, find yourself, and experience everything that life has to offer

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