One thing I’ve noticed since I started writing about makeup and skincare is the move toward real beauty.
In one of her video tutorials, Diana Curmei, my favorite YouTuber of the moment, apologizes for her zit marks.
“You know, I’m happy when I have this kind of stuff on my face because all of you say, ‘Oh Diana, you have amazing skin,’ which is not the case. I don’t have amazing skin.”
Years ago, I would never have heard or read about public figures admitting to such imperfection. Acne marks, much like dark pits, wrinkles and love handles, were edited out of pictures.
Beauty in the pages of glossies and the many billboards lining our highways was a single image. If I didn’t buy enough products to become thinner or get whiter and impossibly poreless skin, people would think me ugly.
Today, beauty isn’t all about fitting into a certain mold. It’s about asserting ourselves, transcending standards and shifting the conversation.
We’re living in an age where we practice a healthy dose of narcissism through selfies. And since we’re on it, we have social media to thank for empowering us to change the game.
In a think piece for Allure magazine, Siraad Dirshe notes the birth of a different kind of influencer: “The industry’s inability to quickly and authentically change in a holistic way gives rise to a new type of beauty entrepreneur: the social-savvy individual who is on a mission to make the beauty industry more diverse and inclusive.”
These entrepreneurs voice dissent in hashtagged protests (#DontTaxMyBeauty) or even compel Rihanna to create Fenty Beauty and its 40 shades of foundation. We see changes in perspective in the freckles and acne that models flaunt on the runways, the plus-sized models fronting magazines, or the cosmetics and skincare that are customized to suit specific needs.
We loudly applaud Allure’s in-house ban of the word “anti-aging” and Glossier’s Body Hero campaign.
What was once the realm of the pretty has now become a place for new bodies and faces that come in different shapes and sizes. We’re resisting impossible standards, and have started defining them ourselves.
Beauty is ours to claim. We’ve come to realize that the point of beauty isn’t even about becoming beautiful.
I finished Diana’s video inspired. I still can’t do the smoky eye right, but at least I can bare my flaws with some comfort and less pressure to conform to something I’m not. —CONTRIBUTED