I just finished a book that I have been wanting to read for quite some time now. It’s called “Mirror, Mirror Off the Wall” and was written by Kjerstin Gruys. I think what first led me to be interested in this book was the fact that Kjerstin admits to have struggled with disordered eating. I read that and knew I had to read this book. Basically, this book is all about how Kjerstin vowed to avoid mirrors for one year, to see how it would affect her body image and thoughts about herself. This book was very eye-opening in several ways, one of them being how obsessed women can get with their looks and “beauty routines” (even when you try not to!) and another one being the fact that often, we dress to impress not ourselves, but those we will run into throughout the course of the day.
Kjerstin made some really valid points in this book. I am in awe of her for even trying this experiment, mostly because I think she has a little bit of a “thing” for style and hair products and makeup (admit it, we all do to some extent). She was definitely on a higher level of beauty regimen at the time of her experiment than I have ever been. She admitted to feeling uncomfortable if she wasn’t wearing a light coating of makeup before she left the house. She spent more money on one hairstyle than I have in my while lifetime. But the point I am trying to make, to myself and you, is this: If the main reason why we put on makeup and dress up isn’t to make ourselves feel good, but instead to impress people or make us feel like we are presentable, why do we do it? I get that some days, it just feels good to put on a coat of mascara and some coverup. I used to feel the need to put some kind of makeup on daily, before anyone saw me. Now I usually just call it quits after a quick sweep of good old eyeliner. Is this because my self image has improved? Um, not really…I’m just getting lazier.
I’m not saying it’s wrong to make yourself feel pretty- actually I’m saying that’s right! If you’re doing it for yourself that is awesome (though I would encourage using makeup to enhance your natural beauty. Makeup doesn’t make you beautiful, you make you beautiful).If you’re doing it because you think you have to, to look good for your co-workers, or acquaintances…that’s ok too I guess, but the pressure to be what society thinks of as beautiful? Don’t fall for it. If you feel at your best when you don’t waste half an hour doing your hair and slathering on layers of goop, just say no. I won’t judge you for it. I also won’t judge you for wearing noticeable makeup. I won’t judge you, period. And the truth is, most people won’t. As the saying goes “Those who mind, don’t matter. And those who matter, don’t mind”.