72 Hours of No More “Must Haves”

On Monday, I decided not to wear any makeup to work.  I have never done this in my entire life.  Well, that’s not exactly true.  I didn’t wear makeup when I was a young girl.  But, I was always fascinated with cosmetics.  Eyeshadow, eyeliner, mascara, lipliners, lipsticks, gloss, foundation, blush, highlighters, etc.  A menagerie of products that would make you over.  Fabulous, right?  I still remember the day that I decided to “arch” my eyebrows.  I believe I was 11 years old.  I reached in to the medicine cabinet and picked up my father’s razor.  I proceeded to shave off my right eyebrow in its entirety.  As soon as I realized what I had done, my mother walked in to the bathroom.  She was mortified!  I can still remember the look on her face!  For the next month my nickname was “scotched eyebrows”. Yes, she used the name scotched as a noun, but that is besides the point.

I have worn some form of makeup since I was 16 and I’m 44 years old.  If I didn’t have on full makeup, at the very least I would have eyeliner and lipstick in the 80s and 90s.  I started to wean myself from eyeliner in 2000.  It was a major process, too.  I felt so weird without it.  I had to get to know myself again without it.  The color around my eyes began to lighten soon after I stopped wearing it and I began to look fresh-eyed.  I would wear eyeliner every now and then, but I never fell in love with it again.  I would go through these phases where I would wear makeup everyday and then wean myself from it because I felt like a slave to it.  It wouldn’t be fun anymore.  It was like I HAD to have it.  It was a Must Have everyday.  I can’t go to the store without makeup.  I can’t sweat while working out because my makeup will melt.  Wait, don’t kiss me, my lipstick will come off. Geez! That sounds so silly now, but I did say those things.

I admit that as I’ve matured and fallen more in love with myself, I have let go lots of hang-ups that used to run my life.  Although, I had come to a place where I could go outside without lipstick and just wear lip balm, I hadn’t come to the place where I would allow anyone to see me without my eyebrows filled in.  You see, my eyebrows never quite grew back after my first arching.  They were never full like Brooke Shields’.  Each and every day I would rise and fill them in before leaving the house.

Monday, I decided to wash my face, put on my moisturizer, spritz and dry my hair, put on some lip balm and walk out the door.  I had a slight panic attack when I pulled into the parking lot at work, but I took a deep breath and kept it moving.   I needed to follow through on my decision.  My reasoning for this act was to prove to myself that I am good enough, beautiful enough to go anywhere without any makeup, completely natural.  When I walked into the building and arrived at my office I went about my day as usual.  My supervisor and I talked as though nothing was different.  I did, however, point out to her that I didn’t have on any makeup, which she acknowledged, but it wasn’t a big deal to her.  We discussed it, laughed about it and went on with our day.  On Tuesday, I decided to try it again.  Again, no big deal.  I did have a little anxiety once or twice but it quickly went away.  I began to realize that people treat you like you treat yourself.  If you act “as if” it’s a problem to be natural, then that’s the vibe you will receive.  The first 48 hours went so well that I decided to repeat it on Wednesday.  Again, no big deal.  I feel that I accomplished my goal and overcame a private fear this week.  Today, I tweezed the extra hairs from my eyebrows, pulled out my eyebrow filler and began to shape them.  I added a little bronzer to my forehead and cheeks.  I finished my look with a little clear lip gloss.

I looked in the mirror and smiled.  You see, with or without makeup I am beautiful.  Beautiful faces are those that wear whole-soul honesty there!



  1. 11/02/2011 at 3:58 PM

    I LOVE this! It is this kind of self-love and self-confidence that we need to instill in women of all ages & races. This is where happiness resides, from within.

    Great post! Congrats on your success!


  2. Normella said,

    05/04/2012 at 10:19 AM

    I am 46 and I went through this process in my mid 20s. The withdrawal was truly liberating! My husband helped me with it. He always thought make up made women look a bit “clowny” and never quite understood our reliance on it.

    I’m glad that I decided to embrace myself when I did because my daughter saw me where so little make up growing up that she doesn’t feel the need to where any at all most days…eye liner and lip gloss are for the club in her mind.

    At 46… I have learned to love myself, my whole self, as I am…. totally naked…because I am fabulous, and if others can’t see it, it’s truly their loss!

    People tend to hide behind a whole lot more than makeup….

    • 07/04/2012 at 9:58 PM

      It is truly a LIBERATING experience. You are blessed to have your husband’s support. So many women have to “go it” alone. Thanks for sharing!!

  3. Michael said,

    10/04/2012 at 1:13 AM

    WHAT no lipstick!! LOL Way to go “unsung Goddess”

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