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People may refer to makeup as a cover-up, or unauthentic because it covers up your true face if you put too much on. I have never applied too much makeup to a point that I was unrecognizable without it. I just always felt a need to have something on. I only felt ready for the day when I had makeup on. I would always say makeup enhances your beauty, and I stand by that, but needing makeup and wanting makeup are two different things. Every girl should feel confident and happy with how they look regardless of if they have makeup on or not.  

Since my first year of high school, I got into a routine of waking up and putting on makeup. If I was running late, I would be extra late because I did not feel like myself without that foundation to cover any acne, or the mascara to enhance my lashes, or that blush to give myself color, and some lipstick to finish the look. Many people couldn’t tell I had makeup on in my teen years, but that’s not the problem.  

As years passed, the same routine of putting makeup on before I left the house continued. Some days I would forget mascara and feel self-conscious. I would always look in the mirror and tell myself that I looked terrible. Makeup seemed to be a part of me. I never realized it was becoming an issue until my mood and attitude would change towards myself when I did not have it on.

During COVID-19, I woke up and continued putting makeup on for my classes over Zoom. I would rush to get my makeup done and then run to my bed to say “Here!” as my teacher called my name in attendance. I started to feel fed up with putting makeup on, and I told the heck with it for some classes. I felt ugly, but tried to accept the feeling.  

When classes started back up in person, I found myself wearing makeup some days and not others. It was a big step in the right direction because I realized that even though I felt bare with how my face looked, makeup should not make me feel less without it. I would be more into makeup at some points in the month than others.  

It was not until recently that I felt 100 percent happy with or without makeup. Something just clicked in my brain and I can look in the mirror and still see myself as beautiful. Nobody is perfect and makeup shouldn’t keep yourself from showing your true skin. I still believe everybody looks better with makeup, but feeling a need to put it on and feeling unhappy without it was not the right attitude to have. I now love my face with or without makeup.  

It takes time to change your ways and come to realizations. Take off your makeup, look in the mirror and love your face. Go out in public and own it. Your face is beautiful just the way it is.  

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Then & Now

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Ava Margolis is from Central New Jersey, studying Multi-Media Journalism. She enjoys interacting with others and hopes to work in the communications field one day as a writer or broadcast. Margolis is an outgoing, compassionate, and adventurous person who loves sharing her passions with others.
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