My week without make-up

The Tab’s Cristina Criddle bares all for a week, attempting to give up make-up for seven days

I love make-up. It’s a life-saver, covering up everything you dislike about your face.

I wasn’t sure whether I did this out of personal choice, or out of fear of people’s reactions… so I decided to say no to the slap for a week to see if it was as scary as I’d imagined.

Day 1

A shameless selfie of me "normally"

A shameless selfie of me “normally”

I woke up with the serial panda eyes.The make-up removal was more thorough than usual, aiming to remove any scraps of mascara (usually I just try and rock the smudges from the night before).

This will set you back £140

This will set you back £140

I looked at my daily supply, adding up the seven years with replacements around every six months, that’s around £1960 – quite a killing.

Late for an appointment at the opticians, already looking worse for wear, I attempted to pick out some glasses. I already look like a dork in specs so, without my usual face camouflage, it was awful. I didn’t feel that different and picking up snacks at Asda was easy – I fitted right in.

The check-out lady wasn't impressed

The check-out lady wasn’t impressed

Day 2

Preparing for the week ahead I pampered. Face-mask, exfoliant and plucking,  in an attempt to fill the time application would usually take.

Silky-smooth selfie

Silky-smooth selfie

With my face feeling like a baby’s bottom, I felt confident and headed to the corner-shop. This happiness was fleeting as I was confronted by the cashier:

“Did you just get out of bed, love? You look like shit.”

I reeled back in horror… this man was used to seeing me made-up, but it was also 3pm and I had even brushed my hair. I walked home grumpily thinking he could do with a bit of concealer to cover up his bags.

Day 3

After the corner-shop hit I was unwilling to leave the house. My housemates said I looked pale and ill, and they were being nice. Instead, I wallowed in bed all day – one of the only circumstances it is deemed acceptable to be bare-faced (that, and sport, but I rarely stretch myself that far).

Home hides you from looking awful

Home hides you from looking awful

Day 4

Getting up for my 9am was harder than usual as I couldn’t hide signs of tiredness. My mirror revealed a recent outbreak of spots, patchy skin and bags… it was enough to make me consider buying anti-ageing cream. Evidently, my skincare efforts were futile.

I went for lunch with a friend and all I could think about was how much makeup she was wearing, how I wished I could somehow rub my face against hers and add some colour to mine. This was beginning to get creepy…

The difference is in the eyebrows

The difference is in the eyebrows

Day 5

I decided to man-up, following some tenuous flattery from a friend claiming they “genuinely couldn’t tell the difference”. I was beginning to realise people were indifferent towards my face.

Even worse than not caring was not recognising. A friend had a two minute conversation with my housemate before doing a double-take to my ghastly self.

“Shit, I didn’t even realise it was you! Are you alright?” He had become so accustomed to my mask he’d thought it was my real face.

In a final attempt to embrace my near invisible look, I indulged in all the unattractive habits you keep in check. I bit my nails, spoke loudly  in the library, and embarked on a takeaway binge – including dessert.  My friend remarked I looked “young and vacant”. Yes, I had been reduced to infancy and loved every moment.

 

It was nice to have something on my face again... even chocolate

It was nice to have something on my face again… even chocolate

Day 6

Going out was my biggest fear. Med usually calls for heels and a lot of slap. Instead I got dressed and sat watching my friends getting ready, traipsing from room to room.

 

I decided to share my boredom and despair via snapchat

I decided to share my boredom and despair via snapchat

However, after passing the hefty obstacle of sobriety, I began to forget about my lack of make-up. Unfortunately, this doesn’t correspond with sexual harassment… my arse was still grabbed multiple times and the med-men still didn’t realise no really meant NO.

Barefaced vs. Beautiful

Barefaced vs. Beautiful

Wierdly, other girls seemed to find me more approachable, rather than catty looks, I got smiles. Is wearing make-up intimidating, or was I just imagining my new-found amicability?

Drunken photos are always blurry enough to hide any make-up

Drunken photos are always blurry enough to hide any make-up

Day 7

The final day of makeuplessness mayhem had arrived. I was glad of the absence of sticky black remnants from the night before. My skin felt great but I was ecstatic at the prospect of longer lashes, and un-patchy skin. I almost caved with date-night, but decided to resist the urge to cover up, finally taking numerous teachers’ advice that “no man likes a dolled-up hussy”. I felt more naked than if I had just worn nipple tassels.

I'd take these bad boys over relinquishing my Mac

I’d take these bad boys over relinquishing my Mac

Overall, I am glad to don the make-up again but the thought of going au-naturelle was more daunting than actually doing it. Generally I found nobody cared whether or not I wore make-up – only I do.

The only issues were trivial issues and if you hate wearing makeup (but had just been worrying about what everyone else would think) ditch it – you’ll have nicer skin, more money and MUCH more time.

Welcome back my old friend

Welcome back my old friend

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