Why I Started Wearing Makeup!
Updated: Sep 30, 2018
The story behind how I became a makeup artist always makes me giggle despite being quite painful when it happened. It was the Summer of 2007 and my parents had gone to the cottage for the weekend. I had to work, so I was stuck at my home in the valley instead of being beside the lake. I was becoming very heavily obsessed with myspace and the emo culture that was apart of it, I loved how expressive everyone was with makeup and there was a creative urge inside me that wanted to try this self-expression out too. Maybe makeup would be the thing that was missing within my own identity?
I opened my parents’ bedroom door and to my right was my mother’s vanity. I tiptoed over to it as if they were home and could somehow hear me. I opened her very large makeup bag and took a peek inside. I pulled out a kohl black pencil and started smudging it around my eyes. Blacker and blacker my eyes became as I started to reflect more like the emo kids I would see online. It was an adrenaline rush watching my eyes transform, I did not recognize the person who stared back at me in the mirror. My face somehow become more feminine and it was almost a turn on. After snapping a few quick photos on my trusty webcam, I saw my father’s red truck coming up the driveway! I ran for my life into the bathroom, turned on the shower and rapidly tried to get the eyeliner off. Hot water just seemed to smudge it more, hand soap basically did nothing, “Oh god”, I thought to myself, “what am I going to do? I can't let him see me like this!” I looked through all the cupboards in our washroom frantically to find something to get the makeup off. I came across a bottle of nail polish remover and for some reason I thought that would be perfect. If it could remove polish, it could totally remove this eyeliner, right? I think the shame of my father catching me with eyeliner on numbed the burning sensation as I wiped my eyes with acetone. I did manage to get it all off my eyes but now in its places was raw, swollen, burnt skin.
When my mother returned a day later, she was in shock at the situation on my eyes and was very concerned about what had happened. I said I had a reaction to the acne medication the doctor gave me and I had put it too close to my eyes. The following day, my mother knew that I had a job interview and did not want me to present myself to the employer with a burn all around my eyes. She brought me into her room and I sat in front of her vanity once again. She had a spinning red velvet chair in front of it that I sat on, she spun me around and started to apply concealer around my eyes. My skin tone being basically see-through, I watched all the burns around my eyes disappear but also all my pimples and the redness on my face. I had never seen my skin look so normal before, I almost wanted to cry. I was always so insecure about my terrible skin and for the first time in a long time, I looked at a reflection that made me feel confident and beautiful.
Basically, my mother’s concealer became my gateway drug into makeup. It also gave me the upperhand to explore her makeup bag deeper while my burn healed. By the time my burn had completely gone away I wore so much makeup every day that I looked like I was doing drag for the first time. I honestly became obsessed with transforming my face every morning. I felt like makeup became the armour that I needed to survive the battle at high school every day. People started complimenting me on my bold color choices and that just fed an ego that I thought was dead. I started posting photos on the internet and found such a support group for my creativity, I felt like I was finally good at something for once in my life and I felt truly beautiful. I guess I really never looked back after the moment and I knew that there would be other people in the world that maybe felt the same way I did… I thought that maybe makeup and being unapologetically myself could make them look in the mirror and feel beautiful for the first time in their lives, too.