MATTHEWS: People don’t actually judge girls with no makeup on

Katie Matthews, Entertainment Editor

It was not a typical Saturday morning at work.

There was something different about that morning. It wasn’t the dress clothes required for work or the co-workers and customers or the atmosphere.

It was my face.

There wasn’t something wrong on the outside, but on the inside it felt like every imperfection was being showcased.

My first day of No Makeup November was in a word … rough. It was my first time going into public without makeup since I started wearing it in sixth grade, and I felt insecure about what people would think. I guess I expected a lot of staring and whispers and asking “What’s wrong with your face?” but here’s the thing: Nothing happened.

That’s right. Nothing happened. At all.

My huge insecurity about my face fueled my fear of judgment, but it was like any other typical Saturday morning at Panera. This was quite a shock to me, but it was not nearly as shocking as that first Monday at school.

If I thought the Panera people were indifferent, I’d clearly never seen my peers before. There were no second glances, no nasty comments, no judgment. I thought my world would end if anyone ever saw me without my makeup.

Over the last several weeks, I’ve gotten to know myself. This experience through Rave Ministries’ campaign has taught me to love myself and that natural beauty comes from within.

With this knowledge and my support group composed of my friends here and all of the women participating around the world, I am able to face my fear of going bare-faced. My friends have definitely been the driving factor behind continuing this journey even though one of them did decide to stop participating.

While I got a lot out of my religious experience with this campaign, I think that all women could gain an even greater self-confidence out of this experience regardless of religious affiliation. The whole goal is to make women realize that beauty doesn’t come from makeup or society’s expectations.

My biggest accomplishment in this experience is gaining the confidence to go into public without my makeup. Some people might question why makeup is so important to me and most girls around the world. I guess it’s a way to hide the imperfections, and it’s a way to fit into society’s norms. In a way, it’s like a security blanket for girls to hide under. At least when society judges a girl’s face with makeup she can blame it on the cover, but when they judge her natural face, she has no excuse for the way she looks. I know I certainly wouldn’t want others to judge my natural face that I have no power to change. This is definitely why I feel more comfortable with makeup on.

Despite the comfort makeup brings, I have learned to live without it, and I will definitely participate next year because I get extra sleep time, my face looks better without all of the makeup clogging up my pores, and I’ve gained a renewed self confidence.

When I see myself without makeup now, I realize that my look is just different. It looks effortless and clean compared to my normal makeup look. Overall, I’ve learned to be confident enough to realize that no one’s opinion about me or my face matters and that’s what this whole experience tried to teach girls.