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Is it weird to be embarrased to be seen without make up?

By Anonymous December 10, 2008 - 12:24am
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I am in my thirties and thought of by many as being very pretty, sometimes even described as beautiful, but I feel that if people saw me without my make up, they would know my terrible secret and think it all a lie. My boyfriend thinks I am silly and thinks me lovely no matter what but I feel very insecure bare faced as I am very light skinned, blonde and blue eyed.
This affects me sometimes as it means that I feel shy even aroubd family.
Can anyone help?

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EmpowHER Guest

Your "terrible secret" is that you are suffering from body dysmorphia. You obsess about your face, your beauty, and even when people admire you, you don't believe them. You should seek some professional help with a Cognitive therapist. It's NOT about the make-up or the color of your eyes, etc. It's that you don't like your own face. This is called body dysmorphoria and has become a huge problem for young women in our media-saturated culture. Please confront this problem because being uncomfortable even around family demonstrates that your body dysmorphia is interfering with your happiness and MUST be dealt with by a knowledgeable therapist who understands the syndrome. With some guidance and cognitive tools, you can overcome this. Do NOT use blogs or this website, you need a real therapist with a great deal of experience in body dysmorphia.

May 11, 2010 - 12:40pm
EmpowHER Guest

I'm 18 and I feel the same way. I hate being so insecure, but I am. I wake up early, and spend so much time on my makeup that I don't have enough time to eat breakfast and I'm always late to school. Nobody at school [even my closest friends] have seen me without foundation, lipgloss, mascara, and eyeliner. I wonder what they would think of the REAL me. My family thinks I'm beautiful without the makeup [my mom swears I look better without it] but I don't believe them because they're family and they're supposed to say that. Right? Someday I hope that I can go out without makeup on and have people like me because of my sense of humor, smile, kindness and strength. Not for my mask.

May 5, 2010 - 4:57pm

I was at home in Ireland for the holidays and my sisters and I had a morning where we met at the bottom of the stairs at home, wearing only one item of make up. The experiment was done as we are all make up addicts. My item was blush, one sister chose base, the other two, lipstick. I was very nervous at first but found the experiment helped me to realize that we are the same person with or without all of our armour and that we are all pretty either way. None of us was too eager to show our mother our almost bare faces as we thought her to be the harshest critic!!!

January 14, 2009 - 12:23pm

I am also a bit of a make up fiend...an addict if you will, but lately, I have been going around with only a little blush and concealer and it is a bit freeing.
It's funny that people think I am younger when I look more natural and frech faced too!
The other night I got all made up and afterwards caught a glimpse of myself in the mirror and thought that I looked too made up! Funny how you can get used to yourself in a certain light.
I think its important to try and let go of the idea that models are perfect. No one is perfect. And perfection is totally boring anyhow.

December 17, 2008 - 10:42pm
EmpowHER Guest

I think in an honest world, beauty is such an over-rated thing. I am also fair skinned, blond haired and green eyed. I tan in the wintertime to keep a little color on my skin but otherwise I am very fair skinned.

I am 31 years old and I think in my younger years, makeup and my hair done was essential. Now, I don't feel the same way. I will go anywhere without makeup, a ponytail and not even think twice about it. I am single too, well that may be why...ha ha!

Anyhow, I really think in our subconscious we tend to think we are only beautiful while we are dressed to the 9. Not true. I met guys out with a bandanna wrapped around my head, no makeup and a hooded sweatshirt. Those are the men that I always liked best. The ones that think that beauty is more than skin deep. These are the same men that knew me better than the ones that were staring at the physical appearance.

It is how you carry yourself that makes you a beautiful person and thats what you always have to remember when you feel like you want to paint yourself everyday. I know it's a tough thing to do and there is nothing wrong with wanting to look spectacular every time you leave your house....

Can you go out without makeup one time? It is a purifying experience, I suggest trying it.

December 13, 2008 - 11:22am

On the weekends I will occasionally go out of the house without my makeup but I don't do it often. I just feel more confident when I have my makeup on and it makes me feel better about myself overall. However, on the weekend I rarely will do my hair and will put it up so it's out of my face. Not doing my hair on the weekend is my selfish indulgence! It's a constant battle to feel good in your own skin with any makeup but it's a good goal to shoot for.


December 11, 2008 - 1:40pm

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, as the saying goes. But, when we're the beholder of what we see in the mirror, egads!

My face isn't what it was 25 years ago; but, my skin is a whole lot healthier than a lot of women half my age. My mother is 79 and her skin is better than mine! Good genes help; good habits help more.

My mother always told me to never leave the house without putting on a little lipstick and mascara. We humans are attracted to people who look healthy and vibrant. Some people naturally have that look. My light olive skin tones need a little help.

Take good care of yourself. Eat healthfully and drink enough water to stay hydrated. Maintain a good attitude and active lifestyle. Your inner beauty will always shine, if you let it.

You need to be comfortable in your own skin. I'm sure you're not too much different from any other woman who finds a little look enhancement in a cosmetic color pot for a special occasion! Meanwhile, take your beautiful fresh face forward.


December 10, 2008 - 5:52pm
EmpowHER Guest

That's an eye opener, Susanc! It shows me that I am not uglier than them....none of us is really pretty totally make up free, in bad lighting, without photoshop or airbrushing....except, maybe Angelina Jolie and Tyra Banks.

December 10, 2008 - 3:46pm
EmpowHER Guest

I am from Minnesota and where I grew up, everyone was very fair, like me. We all wanted to be very dark like Cindy Crawford! I was always unhappy with my look as it didn't match up to what was perceived as beautiful in my community. I know now that being fair can be pretty too...with some help! But I wouldn't be caught dead without my face on!
I feel that I desperately need definition; darkened eyes and brows and blush.
I think that my bone structure is good, but I could never match up to a supermodel and stupidly, this kills me!?

December 10, 2008 - 2:06pm
EmpowHER Guest

Thanks Diane P, you are a great therapist! You say lovely things and make me ponder the true meaning of beauty and personality.
I guess that I am afraid that people will see me as plain without make up. As I said, I am very fair and my eyes and eye brows tend to disappear without definition.
I know that I focus too much on the superficial, though I am a talented artist, who is lucky enough to make her living drawing! Also, I am intelligent and fun and people like to be around me. It feels funny to talk about one's positive attributes! I could ONLY do this anonymously! Beauty has always been a part of my life; it started with my grandmother who was very critical of other's appearances and I have four sisters and we were always compared to each other. My father would wonder aloud who was the prettiest, who was the most clever, etc..
I was supposedly not the prettiest growing up and came into my own in my early twenties, but have the kind of look that people might remark on; I might be out for dinner and the waitress tells me I'm beautiful, or a make up artist might ask if I modelled, etc.. I have been popular while in the dating world too.
BUT.....a few times, braving the world in minimal make up(I think because people are so used to seeing me with dark eyeshadow... in general)I have been asked if I was tired or if I was sick!!!! This makes me upset and I return to the mask of my maquillage!
I know that this all means very little and I am getting older now and it won't last. I am fearful of this also.
I can admire beauty in women like Helen Mirren or Meryl Streep, but I don't want to be them! It frightens me.
I secretly get a little botox...no one knows! I can't believe I do this....and it's made me cry sometimes that I feel I have to.
I have spoken to a therapist about my obsession with make up, beauty in general and my fear of ageing. She thinks that I am so far from it, that I just need to attempt to stop these negative thoughts.
I wish that I could let go of my fears and obsessions....it's painful.

December 10, 2008 - 1:54pm
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