The perception that women put makeup on just to enhance their beauty or believe that they do is very understandable for one to have. Women sometimes spend close to an hour in front of a mirror trying to get the matte look from their foundation then move onto the eyes and glossing up their lips. So because so much effort is put into it, it’s fair to assume that something has to be gotten out of it, but is it just achieving a certain look or is there more to conceal than the world believes.
Recently a tweet made the rounds, from what was probably meant as some-what a tease, women could very easily take offence. It read: "To all women who wake up every morning and put makeup on, remember somewhere out there a clown is doing the same thing.” The point that women are somehow making a fool of themselves or perhaps more accurately, clowning around, by making up their faces was clearly being brought up, but surely this is just the perspective of the originator and all those who agree with it, but could it be possible that we're blinded by the very masks painted on every other woman's face, and that the goal to actually keep away the truth from the world is then achieved?
Let's shift perspective for a while and try look at this from what might seem like a highly unlikely angle. Many women fall victim to emotional and physical abuse from their boyfriends or spouses, and yet most of them still find it in themselves to keep moving forward each day and to do so in a normal manner. The role of normality has to be assumed and if anything is out of whack, so to speak, then this can’t be achieved. But now comes the role of what was probably designed to hide 'bags under the eyes' or dark circles which is now instead used to conceal black or blue eyes and fill out scars and scratches.
Even with the hiding of evidence of abuse, woman can also draw confidence from ensuring that they look good in order to then feel good. It's a well-known thing that many women, especially those still in their youth, suffer from low self-esteem. Some find frightening ways in which to overcome and others may just be going through a tough time and find the much needed confidence in just wearing a t-shirt that fits just right, or even that favourite pair of jeans that they bought on a shopping spree with a good friend.
A 2006 television film looks at the life of Geralyn Lucas with her struggle through cancer and the effects it had on her life and personal relationships. The film 'Why I wore red lipstick to my mastectomy" sees actress Sarah Chalke depict the story from the time where Geralyn graduated and soon after landed her dream job to the beginning of what would seem like anyone’s worst nightmare, where she got diagnosed with breast cancer and the journey that ensued from there.
Her sickness, being a frightening one as well as tough to endure, would understandably put strain on any marriage and beyond the ups and downs, the marriage survived. But what made her survive the internal struggles of her sickness is how she found courage in wearing a very red shade of lipstick. She displays how wearing the bold colour could enhance a woman's confidence and show her strength.
The movie is extremely emotionally and gruesomely raw, with scenes of the actress throwing up in the bathroom but connects back to us with scenes such as the closing shot of Geralyn holding a baby in her arms, something she thought she'd never survive to get to experience. The main point of the movie is to show that even when going through a life threatening trauma, one can find solace in just feeling good about themselves, whether it's through a comfortable fitting pair of pants or even a stick of red lipstick.
We all are structured differently and we might all be in the plight to achieve contentment and attain happiness, but we all go about it in very different ways, the same applies with where and how we draw strength and motivation. Many people prefer to buy a good self-help book, others call upon the shoulder of a good friend to help them through a difficult time, and others who might not be an avid reader or one who collects good friends, putting on that mascara, brown eyeliner, a bold eye shadow and of course not forgetting the bright pop of bright red lipstick does it for them. Not so much hiding the truth, but being strong enough to accept it and move forward.
Gugulethu Leeto - @gusquared