YOU. CAN. DO. BOTH.@benefitcosmetics on Instagram

Spoiler: Yes. 

There's a lot of stereotypes associated with the word 'feminist'. First, they're a woman. She doesn't believe in shaving her armpits, she thinks makeup is yet another myth created by the patriarchy to make you feel bad about your natural self, she has a micro fringe and her favourite thing to drink is male tears. 

But guess what? That's complete and utter bull. Literally, anybody can be a feminist and when I say anybody, I mean any. body. 

I wear makeup every day and I'm not talking like a slight touch of concealer to cover a pimple levels of makeup, we're talking more like a face of primer, foundation, concealer, contour, highlight, setting powder, 3-4 shades of eyeshadow, eyeliner, eyebrow gel, mascara, lip liner and lipstick levels of makeup. And it's not because I hate how I look without makeup nor is it because I feel pressured by society to do so nor is it too impress men. I wear makeup every day because I enjoy it. I enjoy testing out new products, I enjoy the idea of being able to give my squirrel-like cheeks some structure, I enjoy being able to wear bright yellow eyeshadow on a Tuesday just 'cos, I enjoy how there's always a new technique to learn, I enjoy it - end of.

My relationship with makeup began when I was 14 and I started to wear a tinted moisturiser and heavy (badly applied) eyeliner because it I thought it made me look more punk. That slowly grew into understanding that the colour of your foundation should match the rest of your skin, that foundation lips are not sexy and you should always, always fill in your eyebrows. Now, after watching hours of beauty tutorials on YouTube, I wear a perfectly winged eyeliner with subtly contoured cheekbones and when I stand in the right light, my face softly shimmers like Edward Cullen in Twilight (yes, that's a good thing) every single day - and I feel confident. Sure, you can argue my love for makeup stems from pure vanity and honestly, I'd probably agree with you but I don't think there is anything wrong with wanting to look nice and I certainly don't think anyone has the right to make me feel bad for enjoying it either. 

Granted, I'm a CIS white woman so my relationship with makeup has been more enjoyable than others so I understand that for some the choice to not wear makeup doesn't even reflect on their feminist stance. 

Now don't get me wrong, I understand why makeup is considered a sexism issue but hear me out. I don't think it's makeup itself that is sexist, despite its sexist origins. I think it's more the fact that there are a lot of sexism issues surrounding makeup. First, women are often expected to wear makeup which eliminates the choice to wear makeup and considering that feminism is about choice, I can see why it could be considered to be anti-feminist to wear it. Then, you hear a lot of men claiming that 'they prefer women who don't wear makeup' but in my experience, that means they actually prefer women to just wear makeup but just not a lot of makeup - which is still, bull.  


But then, if I don't wear makeup, I'm asked 'if I'm ill because I don't look good'. So you put that with the idea of women wearing makeup is normal and the pressure to wear makeup, the choice to enjoy makeup is considered a feminine weakness. It's widely considered to be a 'silly' hobby and 'a waste of money'. 

And whenever I tell someone my job is to write about beauty every day, I find myself apologising or dumbing my career choice down because it's considered to not be 'a real job' but let me tell you, it is. If you're reading this thinking: 'oh how hard could it be to write about eyeliner all day?' then do (not only me) but yourself a favour and try it. You'll quickly learn there's actually a talent and skill to writing about eyeliner - you can't just say 'it's black and draws well'.

Getty Images

Getty Images

It's not just women who find the idea of wearing of wearing makeup problematic. Men are mocked for wearing makeup too because it's seen as being girly but just like women should be allowed to do as they should men. We should all be able to wear makeup if we want to or to not wear makeup if we don't. 

I'm done with apologising for my career choice when actually, I'm pretty damn proud of it. I'm done with feeling like I'm a bad feminist because I enjoy slapping on layers of foundation. I'm done with the idea that if I want to fight for my own rights, I have to do so without a full face of makeup. I'm done with people automatically assuming that if I wear makeup, I'm obviously insecure.

The way I see it is: as long as it makes you feel good and it's your choice, it's feminism.

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