About half an hour ago, SJ sent me this link from work which reminded me of our conversation from last night, and also of all the rants that my Asian girlfriends and I had last year.
Take note: what you are about to witness is the amazing power of make-up!
Click on the images above for moar! Or alternatively, google "asians with and without makeup" like I did last night.
And even if images lie *cough* Photoshop *cough*, animated GIFs certainly don't!
Since I am absolutely petrified of shoving anything in my eye, be it contact lens or non-painted fingernail, then this is a look that I do not think I will ever be able to achieve. And since I am not a fan of glasses either, blindness ftw!! (Only joking, my eyes are only +0.75 and +1.25.) But what happened to the au naturelle look? Why are celebrities and girls from all nations sooo obsessed with make-up?
That, I cannot tell you, but I suspect that it has something to do with boys, sex, competition, sex, insecurities, sex and The Media. I guess I'm a relative n00b to the scene since it isn't something that I cared too much about until recently. As I was growing up, it didn't really affect me because I wasn't able to identify with the celebrities that I was exposed to. Why? I couldn't compare myself to them, since the majority are white. Plus, all I cared about at the time was *dundundun* POKEMON!!! And then Digimon. Oh, how I miss those happy happy days. Anyway, whilst my friends in school were spending hours in the bathroom putting on their make-up, I was always the one whinging about how long they were taking. It just looked so repetitively painful and pointless when we all knew that you had to take it off later on! And the idea of caking your face in layers and layers of stuff kinda freaked me out. At home, my mother didn't use make-up, and she brought me up to believe in my natural self and to believe that appearances didn't matter (well...didn't matter too much lol), so I didn't really understand why my peers felt the need to go through this daily routine of torture...until I turned sixteen and discovered the power of eye-liner.
I started to notice guys, became more self-aware, and found that eye-liner made my eyes stand out so much. And that's how I developed the Asian glare, hehe. I didn't use any other make-up, as my skin was (and still is) sensitive so I didn't want to get a reaction from applying anything to it. Plus I didn't think I needed to use any other products. Don't get me wrong, I'm not a natural stunner, but I have two working eyes, a functional nose, a mouth in the right place, and non-spotty skin. Oh, and natural double eyelids, bwahahaha! (Although I did not realise what a valuable commodity this was at the time.) So in essence, I was perfectly happy with the way that I am.
That whole outlook changed once I started university and became exposed to Asians and Asian media. Everything was just so damn long-legged or kawaii! >_< ...I realised that once I was able to compare myself to other people who were of similar basic appearance to me, then I found myself becoming more and more insecure, especially when all of these girls seemed so beautiful and had so many guys chasing after them. I was completely thrown out of my comfort zone, and had no idea on how to deal with it all. I wanted to be prettier but due to core beliefs of staying as true to oneself as possible, I wasn't prepared to invest in the effort needed to achieve this 'beauty'. So I drowned. I asked myself why my guy crush at the time did not like me. I cried. My grades slipped, and because I was no longer top of my class, I cried more. I couldn't even be pretty, let alone smart. This deadlock sent me into a spiral of low self-esteem for a very long time, but eventually, I was able to reach some sort of compromise with myself and finally came to terms with the way I am. It took a great amount of willpower to get to this level of acceptance, and even though I'm still somewhat insecure, the personal compromise has more or less remained with me to this very day (give or take a few off days!).
After all, at the end of the day, a pretty girl can only hold a guy's attention for so long before he gets bored and moves onto the next pretty thing. It takes substance, personality to really connect. And how can you have substance if you don't believe in yourself? :)
Today, I still only wear eye-liner on most days, and am comfortable enough to go without if I'm feeling super lazy. If I have a special occasion like a ball or something formal, then I try a bit of lip-gloss, eyeshadow and have recently started experimenting with ze false eyelash to go with ze princess dresses~♥
So, now that all of that back-story is out of the way ~ onto the question of my blog post: is natural beauty dead?
No, never, as long as you believe it still exists. Natural beauty comes from within, from being happy with who you are, and from loving everything about being alive! It's a state of mind, a spark inside of you that needs to be nurtured and allowed to grow into something wonderful and vibrant that'll turn heads and make people think 'wow' when they see you.
If anyone is reading this who has also gone through dark times, then I hope that you can leave this page knowing that you are not alone. :)
Final words ~ some of this has been pretty hard for me to write, so I want to say a big thank you to everyone who told and still tells me that I am beautiful,