Do you ever get all dolled up & confidently step out of your home, only to rush back in & wipe off your makeup? Do you do beautiful, elaborate makeup looks when you're playing 'makeup makeup' at home, but tone it all down when you're going out? Do you wear bright, bold lip colours, but wipe if off on the back of your hand the minute you encounter another human being? Do you? No? Just me then. Ok, so I'm a makeup coward.
It's not that my makeup looks bad or that I'm completely clueless about applying it. It's just that I'm super self-conscious. If people even give me a passing look, I feel nervous. I think to myself, "Why are they looking at me? Do I look odd? Is my face/dress looking weird?" And these thoughts were pretty much a daily occurrence until recently. I just didn't want to stand out in any way.
I have small eyes. Throughout my childhood, people would ask me if I'm from China or Japan. I don't look the least bit like I'm from the Far East. I mean, my eyes were/are only slightly smaller than theirs. The point is that some stupid, ignorant people pointed out over & over again that I look 'different'. And it used to upset me a lot, especially since my nationality was questioned.
Add to all this, I'm shy & reserved by nature. I don't like attention; it makes me uncomfortable. I've always been a bit of a wallflower, preferring the background to the forefront. But my looks caused people to notice me a little. And so did my somewhat uncommon name and weird surname. As a child all this caused me a lot of insecurity & anxiety. Hell, it causes me some tension even today.
It didn't help that Chennai was a fairly conservative city (still is). Anything out of the ordinary or anyone who looks different is subjected to unblinking stares by all those around. It's absolutely nerve-wracking. And it's worse when you use public transport. Anyone and everyone, from snotty-nosed kids to lungi-wearing grandpas to oily-haired aunties, thinks it's their god-given right to stare at you. And it's really unnerving.
So yes, even thought I LOVE makeup, I have been guilty of toning it down & even wiping it off when I step outdoors. And I was pretty hard on myself for it. But I've figured out ways of dealing with my insecurities. And things changed dramatically in the past couple of months when I was forced to confront my fears of looking weird or standing out. More on that in the next post.
But tell me, have any of you had similar experiences? Have you felt self-conscious when you've gone out wearing a bold lipstick? How did you deal with it?
All images taken from Getty