you think i’m pretty without any make-up on?

Last week a 13-year old girl made my day by saying, “You look like Beyonce.”   I definitely do not.  Sorry boys.  Not even close.  Because it’s so far from the truth I’m not sure if I should take it as flattery or not- so I didn’t.  Instead I chuckled with insecurity and an “I wish” at the end.

Yep, I did it again.  I trumped any form of flattery by beating myself up with negative thoughts.  Why?  Because that’s just what I do… and unfortunately I’m not the only one.  Why do we do this to ourselves?  Why are we our own worst critics?  And most importantly, how do we make this stop?

Yesterday I uncovered a blog called  The Beauty Message Challenge, that shared this startling fact: ONLY 2% OF WOMEN DESCRIBE THEMSELVES AS “BEAUTIFUL”!!!  Sadly, I believe it.  Not only am I one of those women in the 98% category but unfortunately I know many others who join me there too.  I am surrounded by beautiful women in my circle of friends and family.  And in fact, if you’re my friend and reading this now then assume I am talking about YOU!  Though knowing & loving my friends, my guess is that you let that comment go in one-ear-and-out-the-other.  So let me say it again more concretely.  Y.O.U. A.R.E. B.E.A.U.T.I.F.U.L.  Believe me!  Otherwise, as Adriana told me today- Your Ass.  I’ll Kick It.

I remember this one instance on a very bittersweet graduation morning in June 2006, I was sitting in my bedroom getting ready and my roommate, Jay, stood before me in the doorway.  I was getting ready to put on ‘my face’ when he stopped me and said, with such sincerity, “You don’t need make-up.  You’re a natural beauty.”  Even though his honesty appeared so raw, I decided he was delusional and told myself that it was just a nice gesture as he could obviously tell I was upset. 

For as independent as I believe I am, I, too, have never been able to overcome the notion that you need this one thing from a guy: To tell you that “you’re beautiful”.  I know, I know.  I hate admitting this but it’s true.  Just part of that whole fairy tale- romantic comedy- happily ever after curse that leaves us delusional hopeful for Prince Charming to rescue us (from the negativity in our own minds).  Why? Why? Why?…I ask myself.  Why can’t we provide that to ourselves?

If you’re a girl then you probably know the John Mayer song, Comfortable, and the infamous line- Grey Sweatpants. No Make-up. So Perfect.  (Note: I almost named my blog this.)  Well here’s my revelation for the day: Why do we need a guy to feel this way about us?  To tell us that we’re beautiful in sweatpants  and no make-up?  Why can’t we just FEEL BEAUTIFUL and tell ourselves that “I am beautiful”? 

Try it!  Put on your favorite hoodie and/or sweats- if you don’t have them on already.  Take a few moments and tell yourself I’m beautiful…just the way I am.  You don’t have to say it out loud if you don’t want to.  Make you’re more comfortable thinking the words I’m beautiful.  Or perhaps you’re better at expressing yourself through writing.  So write I’m beautiful down. Whatever works best for you to feel beautiful, do it.  And I will too.  Tonight, in my sweats, I promise you that I’ll do it and I hope you will too.

~ It’s not who you are that holds you back, it’s who you think you’re not. ~
*The title of this post is lyrics from Teenage Dream (original by Katy Perry) but here’s an acoustic cover of the song by Tyler Ward.

4 thoughts on “you think i’m pretty without any make-up on?

  1. one of the things the new man is teaching me is how, while he thinks i’m gorgeous dressed up and made up, i look good in his eyes in gym shorts and a tank top with no makeup on. it’s a nice thing to learn, and it’s really funny how it takes the man to point this out. you’re right; we all should know this on our own.

    1. We should, but there really is something about someone telling you that you look good that makes you more confident. I remember a quote one time by Ms. Aniston that said something about not needing a man but that it’s the cherry on top. I guess that can be applied to how I feel about that. You need to be confident & feel good in your own skin but the man’s point of view is the extra treat.

  2. this is 1 of the many thoughts i’ve thought about time n again.
    why do u have to put on makeup when the true beauty lies inside u..
    after all, its whats inside of u (read soul) that matters in the end..
    beauty fades, nature stays..
    I’m reminded of an experiment conducted by Unilever for Dove.
    u can check it out on

    1. I’d try to explain the way a woman’s mind works but honestly I’m not so sure myself. We’re mysterious creatures.

      With regards to make-up and ‘making ourselves appear more beautiful’ I think that it’s fair to say that we do it more for ourselves (to feel ‘beautiful’) than for others to see us as such. Does that make sense? It may not, because really it goes against what you said about inner vs. outer beauty, but that’s how we see it. It’s the misconception that to feel beautiful we need to look beautiful- in our own eyes (and others’ too). It’s a vicious cycle and unfortuantely we don’t always see things the way we should. Like you said, it’s about what’s inside that counts.

      Thanks for reminding me of the Dove campaign.

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