Transformation: Makeup vs Self Image

We’ve all been on this train before, right? We think that if we part our hair or curl our lashes high enough, we’ll be the definition of beauty that we see. No one else can possibly understand how we feel better and beautiful with makeup on. There’s something to be said about a woman who truly has a distaste for her own face to feel the need to cover it entirely with makeup. Today, I decided to show you my transformation. Six months ago I posted that I was okay going out without makeup now that I’m a blonde with more confidence. But lately my skin has begun to fight me, and currently, I’m having a lot of issues. So, for this article, I’ll be including the good, the bad, and the very ugly.

My hair has just been washed and I’m now able to put makeup on after finding an outfit for the day. I figure I’ll put my hair up and put my headband on to keep all the hair out of my face.

Notice the bags under my eyes (the lighting doesn’t make them as clear, but they are purple, deep, and actually kind of scary looking). I have several red marks on my face, pimples that never go away on my nose, a sallow complexion due to the time of year, and scars that didn’t heal properly. Plus, I no longer have my summer tan, and my eyebrows have been difficult as of late.

To prove how much of a rabbit hole I’ve gone down with makeup, I thought I’d show off not only my lipstick addiction but everything I use, just so you understand I’m not spending money willy-nilly. Makeup isn’t cheap.

With more lipstick than I’ll ever need, a bunch of color correctors, concealers, primers, highlighters, tweezers, eyeliners, mascara’s and more, this is going to get pretty crazy.

An entire case of brushes for all different reasons, lotion, body spray, primer and finishing sprays, dry shampoo, a brand-new sponge, my comb, and just about out of frame, my rose water on the left. Thankfully, that’s it but watch as my face changes with all of this.

I spray down my face with primer and then use a second one, knowing my face prefers these primers due to how dry my skin can become.

I start off with a color corrector from Urban Decay: Naked Peach Color Corrector. I started using one as a way to fix the bags under my eyes and add at least one correction to spots on my face that don’t have correct coloring. This has actually proven to be useful for me, but it’s also made the process of just starting my face difficult.

I should have taken more than one picture, this scares me a lot. As you can see, most of my face is covered in the corrector. Using my beauty blender, I even this out. Next, I move on to the foundation and then concealers. I use one foundation, then 3 concealers to actually help hide everything well. 

Pictured above, I use Tarte Amazonian foundation, then Shape Tape and Colourpop. Once again, the bags under my eyes are very prominent and it makes things a little more frustrating in my situation. I mean, 3 concealers? That to me is excessive. I hate that it comes to that, but this is why.

Even with the third concealer under my eyes now, do you notice how discolored my face looks, even with all these products? My third concealer is the best one to even out my entire face, using Bye-Bye-Under-Eye concealer from IT Cosmetics.

Clearly, you can still see the spots where my bags are basically leaving a dent in my face, so it never truly goes away. But my skin is now one color, all the red marks and discoloration is fixed, and I now look at least a little bit more normal. But there are many more steps to go through.

Next up, we added eyeshadow primer (to keep the shadow on all day) and the eyeshadow colors Wild Child and Dreamer (see colors below). I then went on to blend the colors together with my blending tool. After that, I sat very still and put on my eyeliner, NYX Epic Ink Liner in black. I stopped doing winged liner due to the shape of my eyes, which are very hooded, because they are difficult to create good, clean lines that will stay. I’ve tried multiple products with the same results. 

Next, we move on to mascara, which is a huge hit or miss with people these days. There are many cheap products that do not work well, and I’ve found Tarte’s Light’s Camera, Lashes! Is my favorite not only because of the way it makes my eyelashes look, but because it stays on all day. After that, I add eyeliner under my eyes, with a NYX Professional Makeup Jumbo Eye Pencil in color Milk. This is due to the fact my eyes look cleaner, wider, and prettier than with black, which tends to make me look sleepy and does not make my facial features look good. Notice the smile on my face as I start to look alive.

With my eyes completed, I move back to my face to contour. Recently, I’ve been looking for a better palette and one of the sale’s women at Ulta recommended my friend and me to NYX 3 Steps to Sculpt. I got the Light palette for this, again due to my very pale skin. So using this palette and a specific contouring brush, I get started on this. (3 Steps to Sculpt down below)

Now while it’s difficult to show off the contour this way, I can explain. I took the brush, an e.l.f contouring brush and stroked my jawline with one coat. Then, with a trick my friend taught me two years ago, I also included more of the bronze on my face next to my ear to further enhance my jawline. This works wonders. After this, I took a blush tool and used the white color in the palette as my “blush” to accentuate the jawline above and below. It’s hard to show in pictures, but it looks incredible.

Finally, we move on to one of our last steps. During Black Friday this year, my local Ulta (I swear this isn’t sponsored I live closer to Ulta than a Sephora) was having an insane sale. Anastasia Dream Glow Kit was for half off. Instead of $40, I got it for $20. It only took me 3 years of searching! So for this look, I used the color Magic. For my highlight, I used it above the contouring, right after my jawline up to my hairline. It’s difficult to see in these iPhone quality pictures. I also highlight my nose, a trick I got from James Charles, and I add some highlight above my eyebrows for a little extra glow.

See how impossible it is to see my highlight?

With that comes the final step: my eyebrows. Now I have difficult shaped brows, and the beauty community on Youtube never really had anything for brows like mine. So, I do something a little different than what most people do, and that’s a “Boy Brow.” This is essentially filling in your entire brow with gel or a pencil, like a traditional boy’s eyebrows would normally be. I shape mine with a curve to ensure they at least look nice, but my brows have always been my weakest part of makeup.

I also use a brown lipstick for the day, from Maybelline: Super Stay Matte Ink called Composer. Best $8 lipstick you can imagine. My $35-$40 lipsticks I bought when I first started lipstick don’t compare to Maybelline: Super Stay.

Bipitty-boppity-boop, I have completed the makeup look. 

And as a reminder, I’m a full-time glasses-wearer now, so I wanted to show myself with and without the glasses. 

Transformation looks like this are, in my opinion, weird. I don’t wear makeup to get attention. I don’t wear it to puff out my chest and say, “Hey, I’m hot, you should date me.”

I wear makeup for me. I spent a long time being chastised for how I look. I hated my face, I hated being in public. Even these days I wear small amounts of concealer to cover my bags under my eyes, and then also put my brows on since they’ve been difficult recently. But the whole thing about women doing this for attention? That can’t be a stigma any longer.

I’m comfortable in makeup. I feel more alive, happier, and freer. Most people tell me I either don’t look any different or that I’m beautiful either way. My self-confidence was shot when I was 5, so I have no abilities in my mind to believe such a thing, and I appreciate when people try to tell me this, but I lost the idea of that a very long time ago. I love makeup, and I love being able to change up a look at a moment’s notice with my face. Just the other day I did a dramatic blue and brown eyeshadow look that you’d never expect to work, but somehow it looked incredible. 

The “transformation” is for others to understand the idea that we are different, and you can see my smile grow a little bit more with each passing picture as I get closer to the final results. That’s why I love makeup. That’s why I do it. I can’t every day because of time, but I try to keep up with my look at least a few days a week. While I don't feel pretty without makeup, I know that once my tan comes back, my freckles settle in, and my red marks on my face diminish, I’ll at least feel a little more at ease. After all, we each see ourselves in different lights. Don’t be the person to discourage the woman with makeup. 

They are our weapons in battle.