Life Is More Than Filters And Highlight Reels

Sometimes I wonder what happened to the young girl who once flew out of the house without looking in the mirror, so eager to play outside.

She had a carefree spirit.

This girl ran and played until she was out of breath, not once stopping to wonder what people thought of her. I remember how this girl ran through the sprinkler and jumped into the pool without a care of how her hair looked or how she looked in her swimsuit.

I remember that girl. I was that girl. We were all that girl.

I’m determined to find that girl again.

It’s been a long time. For as long as I could remember, every morning I woke up, washed my face, brushed my teeth, put on my makeup and headed out the door.

Life Is More Than The Highlight Reels On Social Media

But lately, I’ve realized life is so much more than filters, layers of makeup and highlight reels on social media.

So I started choosing to go bare-faced to work. I was never a person who wore much makeup, but a little foundation or BB cream had been just enough to cover the blemishes and the insecurities.

In most senses, my makeup was a security blanket. I didn’t leave home without at least covering the blemishes, filling in my brows and looking “presentable.” For me, makeup became a necessity, like brushing my teeth.

A few months ago, a girl I follow on Instagram, Taylor Dilk, started posting about her challenge to not wear makeup. She was working on clearing up her acne and wanted to let her skin breathe.

Going Makeup-Free

At first, I was inspired by her. And then I became a little angry with myself.

I wondered why I was in the mindset that it was a requirement to put on makeup before leaving the house. Surely, I was confident enough in my own skin to go bare-faced to work and my daily activities.

Honestly, the first couple weeks were challenging.

My morning routine was easier – not worrying about makeup meant I had time to load the dishwasher and enjoy my breakfast, rather than put on my face and rush out the door. My lack of makeup however, made me aware of every flaw, every blemish, every pimple on my face.

I worried I wouldn’t look “professional” enough at work. I wondered if I looked less “put-together.”

I don’t think a single person at work batted their eye at my new bare-faced look. I’m not even sure that they noticed. My boyfriend actually insists that I look better without makeup.

So why did I spend years thinking that I needed makeup to look the part for my job? Why did I spend years thinking makeup was a requirement to leave the house?

Women Compare Themselves To The Pictures They See Online

It probably starts with how our world is filled with filtered pictures. Only the best images are put online, and beautiful celebs are splashed on covers of glossy magazines. What else was a girl supposed to think?

I had conditioned myself that professional women wore makeup to work. I thought that in order to be successful at my job and be taken seriously as an adult, I needed to cover every flaw and every blemish.

I’m sure I’m not the only one that has fallen into this way of thinking.

It would be incredible if celebs and those we follow on social media chose to show us their true bare-faces. Imagine magazine covers filled with makeup-free women. Imagine how our society would change.

Over the past few months, I have worn makeup for special events and occasions. Otherwise I forced myself to be uncomfortable until I felt comfortable.

My skin is now the clearest it’s ever been. I am confident without a single drop of makeup on my skin. And the best part – I’m still taken seriously as a professional and as an adult.

My makeup or lack of makeup never defined me – I just thought it did.

I still catch myself with my nose a mere inch from the mirror, examining every pore, every blackhead, every blemish and every flaw. But now, I’m working on embracing those flaws, rather than covering them up.

Think back and remember that little girl who never relied on makeup and mirrors. Remember who she was and all that she is. Remember her spirit. Remember her energy for life. Remember the way she ran and played.

I remember that girl. I was that girl. We were all that girl. Let’s go find her again.