Thought Catalog
May 18, 2015

Guys, Our Makeup Is Not Meant To Impress You

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What is the issue?
Flickr / Ryan
Flickr / Ryan

Men, picture this for a second:

A woman walks into a crowded room with a gorgeously made-up face — from the gradient blending of her eye shadow and pointed flick of her winged liner to her red-tinged lips — you can see that every detail is spot on and carefully applied. Giving more fireworks to this spectacle is a pair of high heels matched with a dress that hugs her body in the right places and luscious locks that fall in waves down her shoulders.

What’s the first thing that comes to your mind?

You’ll probably think: damn, she’s hot. Or about 10 wows will pop into your head in a split second. But sorry to break it to you, guys — that gorgeous woman didn’t spend hours perfecting herself just to elicit a hundred dreamy sighs from men. She didn’t get dolled up to impress you.

It’s not all about attracting men.

One of the most common (and annoying) misconceptions is that women wear makeup, coordinate their outfits, and style their hair in order to impress the opposite sex. In fact, this topic has always been a subject of debate between men and women, with articles like this and this sparking heated arguments in the comments section.

Photo provided by the author
Photo provided by the author
Photo provided by the author
Photo provided by the author

The comments “What is it with some men, they can’t seem to accept that women don’t always dress up for them?” and “I wear makeup for me, not for him.” are things that I’d like to tell my friend’s boyfriend. Let’s call them Rina and Argee. They’ve been dating for several years, but Rina still sometimes calls me up to complain about the way Argee makes her feel whenever she’s all made up and pretty. Argee seems to think that Rina puts on makeup to catch the attention of her male colleagues. Of course this isn’t true, and Rina has always argued that she’s not doing it for anyone but herself. But no matter how many times Rina tries to convince Argee, he just wouldn’t listen to her. He firmly believes that Rina always tries to look her best to attract other guys. As upsetting and frustrating this skewed notion is, a lot of men seem to think the same way too. And women couldn’t do anything to change their minds about it.

It’s a woman’s choice

A thank you and a high five to the woman wrote this comment:

Photo provided by the author
Photo provided by the author

It’s true. Wearing (or not wearing) makeup is nobody’s choice but ours. Sure, the media may have played a part in influencing our perceived ideals of beauty, but that doesn’t mean we’re being forced to line our eyes and color our lips just for the sake of achieving a certain state of attractiveness. It’s our choice to spend money on makeup and sit in front of the mirror every morning perfecting that damn winged liner and blending that foundation because we feel good when we do it. Simple. Nobody makes us to do it — not the media, not the ads, and definitely not the guys we’re dating.

It’s mostly for ourselves

This might seem hard for men to understand, but we actually enjoy prettifying ourselves for ourselves. It makes us feel fucking great, and it has absolutely nothing to do with impressing men. A dash of mascara here, a touch of lipstick there, perfectly shaped eyebrows, blushing cheeks, and we feel like we’re ready to take on anything — be it a boardroom meeting, a 5PM deadline, or something as simple as grocery shopping. It boosts women’s self-esteem, according to this study (62.50% said wearing makeup helps them attain self-esteem) and this survey (among 1,292 women respondents, 48% said that they put on makeup because “they like the way they look with it” and 32% agreed that “it makes them feel good”). In this other survey, a mere 14.58% said that they wear makeup to impress guys, while 34.26% answered that it’s about “experimenting with other looks.”

See, we don’t go about our usual morning makeup routine with a guy in mind. We’re not pressured to consider a guy’s opinion at all when we choose to wear a rocking aqua eye shadow or a bright red lipstick for the day. We do it because the color matches our outfit and because we think we’ll look awesome with it. It’s a way of expressing ourselves, boosting our confidence, and making us feel fucking fabulous. And when a woman feels and looks great, she can work wonders.

So if some of you still thinks that women wear makeup only to impress men, trust me — we don’t. TC mark

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