Since I was a teenager, my favorite cosmetics brand has been Bobbi Brown. With the exception for a year where I was buying everything MAC, I've been a very loyal BB customer, using only Bobbi's brushes and make-up.
Bobbi Brown's latest advertising campaign, coupled with events over the last few years, had me thinking a lot about beauty and body image. I've always loved make-up. I get it from my aunt, who is queen of the cosmetics counter. A trip to the mall was never complete without her buying a new lipstick. Truly, I have no idea why she needs constantly buy lipstick? I buy lipstick once a year. It's perplexing. My mom, her sister, as the opposite. One of the only times that I saw my mom wear make-up, was for my wedding. She looked great.
Bobbi Brown is known for natural looking makeup. The latest campaign is called Pretty Powerful and the focus is on bringing out the natural beauty in every woman. They are also using real women, rather than models as the main focus of the campaign. I know that this has been done before and it's not a new gimmick, but I think it's nice. I have nothing against models, as they are also real women, but I like the idea of having a bigger variety of ages in sampling and more of a focus on individuality, rather than an ideal perfection that traditional models seem to represent in society.
Other than books, there is nothing I enjoy buying more than make-up. I get giddy and love coming home to experiment with my finds. I've look at it like buying a paint set, a way to express myself. Most of the time, my make-up is very natural. but sometimes I go crazy with silver glitter eye shadow or kelly green eyeliner. I think of make-up as another accessory. It's not a necessity, but i definitely feel more complete and put together with it. It's the icing on the rest of the outfit that leads to a polished appearance.
Increasingly, I've gone out of the house with zero make-up on. I have nice skin and look fine without it. There is no good reason to wear make-up to the gym or on an early morning ATV ride. I recently posted a zero make-up picture on this blog from that ride in Whistler. I ended up with mud splattered all over my face from the ride, make-up would have been a waste. I may feel less polished without make-up, but it doesn't mean that I feel less pretty.
I've always had a healthy body image. I'm not perfect. who is? However, a vast majority of the time, I feel attractive. My first paying job was nude art modeling in college. I can say with all honesty that I never once felt uncomfortable being naked in front of a class of people. It was physically uncomfortable with the cold and having to stand still for long periods of time, but I never had a problem with the nudity. I loved to watch people draw me as I was standing there and see how they perceived me. It's also so professional. that really, I was like a bowl of fruit up there, nobody ever made me feel uncomfortable.
I think the human body is beautiful, in every shape. I have to admit that my recent retail job has made me keenly aware of how so many people don't love their own bodies. A shift didn't go by that I didn't hear several customers make disparaging comments about their bodies. It was really depressing. Even at my heaviest, which is about ten pounds above my current weight (admittedly, i've been more than i should, but never too overweight), I've always felt attractive. I've also heard many catty remarks directed towards those who are deemed too thin, mostly people quick to label them as anorexic.
I'm not discounting those people who have serious eating disorders (both over and under), but it makes me think that part of the problem is our societies rush to judgement. Maybe people would have a better self image, if they focused on themselves, rather than those around them. Yes, this is easier said than done, but I think our society likes to harp on what it doesn't have, rather than highlighting what it does have.
i know that it's advertising, but i like Bobbi Brown's campaign to focus on individual beauty, rather than trying to use make-up to turn a face into something it isn't. i have very, very small eyes. They are never going to be big, so let's work with what I've got. i'm okay with working with what i already own, rather than what I wish I was.
i remember being mortified when getting my make-up done to be a Bridesmaid in my friend's wedding. My friend getting married and the other friend in the wedding are both Chinese and so was the make-up artist. She kept saying how lucky i was to have western eyes with a crease in the lid. I learned that some asian women have surgery to get the crease, because they deem it more attractive.
In general, I'm not sure how I feel about plastic surgery. i guess in some cases it's okay and I am fine if it really makes someone feel better about themselves. However, the lid crease freaked me out, because that is changing something more fundamental that makes asian women unique and beautiful. Personally, I had never thought one way or the other about the crease in my eye lid and couldn't imagine why anyone would want it. It's just a flab of skin. i certainly couldn't understand why she kept telling me I was lucky and I was relieved when my friends seemed equally horrified.
i think that everyone sees other people and wishes for certain attributes. It would be wonderful to have enormous green eyes or thick curly hair, but that's not what's me. It's okay to admire, it's natural, especially if someone has a feature that is especially stunning. However, I think BB's campaign should be the advice to follow, learn to love what makes you beautiful. Whether through external means (make-up/clothes/jewelry) or internal, latch on to what makes you unique and let that shine.