I admit it. Whenever I’m in the checkout line at the grocery store and see those tabloid headlines “Stars Without Makeup,” that little green-eyed woman within me snatches up a copy. I want to see photos of those beautifully made up and beautifully coiffed women look not so beautifully made up and not so beautifully coiffed. Call me petty if you will, but my curiosity always gets the better of me when I’m confronted with those provocative headlines. But there’s only one question that comes to mind when I glance at these photos. Why go out in public without makeup?
Makeup has been a part of my world since I was a junior in high school. With the prom coming up, I remember making the trek to the local department store with my mother. We purchased eye shadow, mascara, blush, and lipstick at the Clinique counter, and with my makeup supplies in hand, I felt oh so grown up. One of my transitions to womanhood had just been completed, and there was no turning back on the makeup front. It was part of my life now.
At 57, I wouldn’t dream of leaving the house without wearing at least a little bit of makeup. If I don’t use an eye pencil, you’d swear I hadn’t slept in 48 hours, and lipstick will always be one of the top three things I’d bring if stranded on a desert island. It’s not that I have a “makeup-less” face that would frighten small children or crack any mirrors, but I fully understand the benefits that come from adding more color and definition to my face. On those rare occasions in the past when I ran an errand sans makeup, I inevitably, and I mean inevitably, bumped into someone I knew. And despite my best intention at conversing, I would stress the whole time about my less-than-stellar appearance.
With all of that said, it still doesn’t answer my question of why some celebrities occasionally go out in public without so much as even a dab of lip gloss. I know that there are times when I like to kick back, put on my sweats, and keep the face and hair a little trouble free, but only in the privacy of my own home. And celebrities, I’m sure, are no exception. But what is the exception is that these women know that that every time they venture out in public, they are followed by a band of paparazzi. Photographs of them are what keep some people in business, so if I were in their shoes, putting on makeup would be a no-brainer.
Yet truthfully, when all is said and done, celebrities running around without makeup doesn’t amount to a hill of beans in the whole scheme of things. If these women choose to go out in public without makeup, well, it will always create a good tabloid cover story. And people like me will always buy a copy.
I just know that when it comes to makeup, please don’t ever send me to a world without bronzer.
A former high school English teacher, voracious reader, and sometime world traveler, Marian Wood is learning to take that leap in life. The net will appear.