Vérité Woman Renée Palkovsky found herself face to face with the beauty industry when her unique perspective on beauty and self-preservation didn’t seem to line up with the masses. She takes this space to lend her vision on why makeup isn’t for her. “I’d rather be recognized for my uniqueness than for my ability to conform.”
Why don’t I wear makeup you ask? Sit down a while and let me tell you how I really feel.
We live in a world, a generation where, for me, everything feels fake – fake boobs, fake nails, fake food, fake friends, fake news, fake followers on Instagram. It seems impossible to drudge up something truly real, something authentic — not changed, altered or amplified. I feel like I have to always be policing, checking to see if it that label inside the vintage YSL pants I found at the consignment shop are real or… well…fake. It’s as if everything must be double checked, researched, investigated and approved because if you don’t, who knows what you are really getting. And quite frankly I find it exhausting. Cue, the beauty industry.
I have nothing against cosmetics or even those who decide to indulge in plastic surgery. I get that doing certain things makes us feel sexier and boost our confidence, and I am all for that. Heck, it would be hypocritical of me to say that I am completely au natural: I get my legs waxed, use whitening toothpaste, and had a nose job years ago to realign a broken nose from my youth. All three can be deemed fake in some regard so I can’t be over here waving my “100% real” flag. But how far are we take this changing, altering, or amplifying? How much is too much?
Makeup, like fashion, is an art form in my eyes. I have so much admiration for makeup artists who have the talent to work on so many different canvases (faces) and create something spectacular. Think about it — every single face is different with curves, shapes, indents, etc, and a makeup artist has to be able to not only work with that challenge but spot the unordinary in these human facades and capitalize on it. Makeup artists have the ability to transform the look of a person and that is what I call brilliance. But conjunctively it’s this transformation that doesn’t work for me personally.
I like to do this little exercise of inner dialogue: When I ask myself “why are you putting on makeup?” the answer usually has to do with fitting in or looking a certain way to get attention. So then I follow with the questions, “Who are you trying to fit in with and why are you seeking attention?” The last question always gets me and I catch my ego in a story about how I need to wear makeup in order to get attention because I’m being seen as attractive and then that will ultimately give me love — right? Wrong!
This is where I get choked up on the idea of wearing makeup because as you’ve just read, you can see I’d be doing it for all the wrong reasons. My made-up self is a way for me to cover up (no pun intended) my insecurities. It’s nothing but a mask for me to hide behind because I have some odd belief from God knows where that what’s underneath isn’t beautiful or worthy of love from an outside source.
So when I strip it down to the bare bones, makeup is where I would be robbing myself of authenticity because it’s not loving me for who I truly am or what I truly look like — my self-acceptance for the way I look would be fake. It’s just another way for me to conform with the masses for the fear of not being accepted, instead of charging forward every day from a space of “take me for who I am”.
I want those who I attract in my life to love me and accept me as I am and what I look like — truly — not the dolled up, 1 hour after looking in the mirror, 10 products, and 3 skin tone shades later. That’s just too much work and time that can be put toward something that offers more longevity.
Whether I am deemed as what our society calls beautiful or not, I’d rather be recognized for my uniqueness than for my ability to conform.
I’d rather wake up everyday knowing that a) those who are in my life are here because of who I am, not for who I can be if you give me an hour and b) I don’t need to freak out because the guy waking up next to me might not like what he sees since he’s only ever seen me with makeup on and now it’s probably smeared all over my face. There is something so relieving in that. There isn’t anything to upkeep or maintain, you just get to be you. And when you and those in your life can love and accept the real you — well there isn’t anything fake about that.