“Wait… you’re not wearing makeup?” Hearing this is actually a really nice compliment, but it also amazes me how much my lack of makeup surprises other people!
I get all kinds of questions about why I don’t wear makeup and what I do wear so I figured it was a great topic to start talking about more.
First I need to clarify, when I say I don’t wear makeup, what I mean is that I don’t wear makeup often. If I’m going to an event or have a special occasion, then I’ll either pay someone to do my makeup for me because then it feels a bit more special and I know it’s done properly, or I’ll just do some basic makeup myself.
Also, I feel I have to say, I don’t not wear makeup because of any ethical reasons, I’m not taking a stance, I’m not judging those who do wear makeup.
I actually think wearing makeup is a very personal thing and I am in awe of people who can do it so darn well. It’s an art and your skin, your face is your canvas and you get to choose what you do with it.
So, why did I stop wearing makeup?
As you can see, I have a lot of freckles. And for a long time, I hated those freckles. Now I see people are going and getting their freckles tattooed on and that’s just so strange to me.
I have spent a lot of money and a lot of time trying to get rid of my freckles with laser removal, specialised creams… and they always come back.
So, when I was in the height of hating my freckles, I wore a lot of makeup to cover them up. Like, a lot of makeup.
But here’s the thing about wearing makeup when you have freckles – if you’re trying to cover them up, it’s really hard to do because your skin tone is all over the place.
You have darker freckles, lighter freckles and then, if you’re like me, your base skin colour is really light so if you try to match that, you look washed out and super pale.
So I’d wear more makeup to try and even it all out and it was ridiculous. And my skin was suffering for it bigtime.
I had these little bumps all over my skin and while I’ve never really had acne, I did have blotchy red skin and it just felt like I was putting more and more on my face to fix it or cover it up.
I decided I was going to let my skin breathe a bit and just stop wearing makeup for a while.
Not wearing makeup to work was a big step for me. I still wear tinted sunscreen, I’m often in the sun a lot and it can be for long periods of time so I need the sunscreen and the tinted just stops my face from looking super pale because of it.
For those who don’t know, I’m a Paramedic so I can be out in the sun for hours at a time and getting all dirty and sweaty and honestly, once I stopped wearing makeup, my skin felt so much better after work! It didn’t feel so gritty and I found I could wash my face at work and just reapply the sunscreen and I felt so much more fresh!
One of the biggest benefits I didn’t even think of was the amount of time I saved when getting ready! So much easier!
I was still wearing makeup when I’d go out for the day or if I was meeting friends for coffee, but I soon realised if I was going to give my skin a break, it needed to be a proper break.
So I cut right back to just wearing some powder or pencil on my eyebrows, and a little gloss on my lips. No foundation, no BB creams, no mascara…
A few months after I cut right back, I went to my annual skin check I have done and highly recommend everyone to do. In Australia, we have super high rates of skin cancer and they are so much harder to pick than you would ever imagine.
You’d think because I have so many freckles it would be easy to spot the ones that are questionable, but I’m telling you it’s not.
So I went for my skin check and they found a skin cancer, on my face.
Check out the video to see a picture of the skin cancer on my face… it’s not as easy to spot as you might think…
Obviously, I had to have the skin cancer removed, but having a skin cancer removed isn’t just a little cut and it’s done… they had to cut a larger amount out around the growth too. It’s like removing a tree, you have to get all the roots as well and make sure it doesn’t grow back.
So I ended up with over twenty stitches on my face and half of my eyebrow gone…
I did ask for a Harry Potter scar but apparently they weren’t taking scar requests that day…
I’ve always been pretty self-conscious about my eyebrows, they’re dark but sparse and I could never get them to look good. It was even worse now I had this big scar through my eyebrow.
So, after a year of dealing with having to try and pencil it in every day, and still having eyebrow pencil as the only makeup I wore, I decided I was going to have my eyebrows tattooed.
I spent a long time researching the right person to do it, I mean… it’s a tattoo… on your face!! It’s not like you can just hide it if you don’t like it.
I found someone who was absolutely amazing and in May 2019 I got my eyebrows tattooed.
At first, I was a bit worried… but kept reminding myself to trust the process. The person I had do mine spent over an hour and a half just measuring and outlining where she was going to tattoo, and then spent another hour doing the tattoo.
It was the best cosmetic decision I have ever made.
Now that I have my eyebrows tattooed, I genuinely go makeup free most days. I will occasionally add a little powder to my eyebrows, like in the video, just to make them a little darker and fuller looking, but most days I don’t have to worry about it at all.
Getting my eyebrows tattooed wasn’t a simple decision. It wasn’t about my no makeup approach, it wasn’t for anyone other than myself.
I realised I was avoiding taking photos of myself with my kids because I didn’t have my eyebrows drawn in. Having half of my eyebrow missing was making me so self-conscious I was missing out on capturing these memories and I didn’t like that.
Since having them done, I literally never worry about how they look in a picture, I take shots with my kids first thing of a morning, while swimming, whenever!
It might seem vain to someone else, but to me, it was a big deal, and that’s my whole point with this.
If wearing makeup for you makes you feel good, then go ahead and do it. If you’re like me and saving 10 – 15 min a day (or more) by not doing make up is important to you, then go for it. If you want to get your eyebrows tattooed, or you forehead botoxed or whatever it is that makes YOU happy and confident, then do it!
So now, my daily routine is more about skin care, I spend more time and money on products that care for my skin rather than cover it up and since doing so, I feel like I don’t need to wear makeup and I am starting to embrace and love my freckles more.
Going makeup free might not be for everyone, but it might also be something that works well for you.