You may have noticed I have become a bit concerned about the beauty industry as of late, especially if we are connected on Facebook or some other social network. It is true, I am experiencing an increased sense of disenchantment and apathy with with the fashion and so-called beauty industry but this is not the first time. When I was a sophomore in college at NCSU I was fortunate enough to enroll in several women and gender studies courses (I would eventually minor in this particular off-shoot of sociology, so engaged was I) and I began to be able to view the way that products and services were marketed to me with a much more critical eye. I began to question what was normative and why. I began to wonder who the “everybody” was that I was supposed to appeal to aesthetically and why, exactly, I should give a rat’s a–.
Theology adds an entirely new dimension to where I was even 5 or 6 years ago. There is nothing wrong with a little makeup, with tweaking your hair shade or with pushing up what you’ve got. It is, in my opinion as a person of faith and a feminist important to ask the question: who are you doing it for? I know for sure I am yes, fearfully and wonderfully made and P.S. – I look good as the person I was made to be. I am uncomfortable from a rational point of view and certainly from a justice point of view aiming to spend hundreds or even thousands of dollars on what was made by the divine. Keep your lash extensions, your tummy tucks, and your Botox.
The average American girl is making her first cosmetic purchase at age 12, and I am saddened and alarmed. It is no wonder that this is the case however because all that she is told in the media is that every woman should make myriad improvements on her face and body (notice how infrequent there is mention of the exciting possibility of making improvements to her soul or her mind in any commercial) and every woman she knows in real life looks in the mirrow, scrutinizes and scowls.
I am but one woman but I pledge that for the next month I will wear no makeup. More importantly, however, when I look in the mirror I will not scowl but will smile at what I see. If you do the same, especially the second part, maybe it will catch on and some small subtle change will take place. You never know.