makeup and boys…or not.

Lately I’ve been making some life changes, the main ones being 1) I’ve given up makeup and 2) I’ve given up boys. I gave these things up for separate reasons, but the more I’ve lived without them the more I see how much they are related.

A bit of heartbreak originally inspired my fast from boys, but there are so many other reasons that follow. Pretty much whenever I meet a single guy I size him up in 15 seconds or less: would I date him or not? And that’s not really fair. I wouldn’t want anyone to do that to me. I need to learn how to meet a guy and think of him as a friend or brother and nothing else.

Kind of along the same lines, I need to learn how to stop my heart from leaping to the conclusion that we are meant to be when a guy and I like the same TV show, or whatever. If I find out a boy has a similar interest as me, such as an appreciation for take-out Chinese food, I’m instantly in love. Or if he makes me laugh, I’m his. If he’s extremely talented in an artistic way, oh man. There’s no going back (I recently fell in love with that 11-year-old YouTube kid who plays a Lady GaGa song on the piano…it’s a problem).

Unfortunately, I recently learned that I am still the girl who will ditch her friends for the boy she likes. Not. Cool. I skipped my best friend’s 16th birthday party to go on a date with a boy (the irony is he picked me up super late because he was at his friend’s birthday party), and recently when I liked a guy I forgot all about my friends. LAME! Chicks before dicks, man. I need to learn how to not ditch everything/everyone in my life  as soon as a guy shows a hint of interest in me.

With the exception of initial crushes and mild infatuations and first dates, I’ve always thought I was someone who was guarded against the bigger things like relationships and love and romance. But in the last year or so I’ve proved myself wrong. In one case I had liked a guy for a while, and when he found out he wanted to kiss me. I let him, even though I knew it meant nothing to him. I told myself it wasn’t a big deal. If only I had known…that kiss haunted me for months.

Then there was this other guy. I liked him in an obvious way, and he fed off that attention. I knew he didn’t really like me, and yet I poured my time and emotions into him. Many girls in our society open up their legs to get a guy to like them; I’m finding that instead of my legs I open up my heart.

I thought I was different than that.

I don’t want any of my self-worth or security to be found in a guy. No way, no thanks. So no more pouring out my heart; no more flirting; no more trying to look pretty so I’ll be noticed and liked.

And that’s where the makeup comes in…kind of.

I gave up makeup because I want to life a simpler lifestyle. I’m trying to get rid of the trifle things that take up my time and money – even if it’s something small. Also, when I’m wearing makeup I feel like I’m fake; like I’m wearing a mask to cover up who I really am. I usually only wore a little bit of makeup – some eyeliner and a swipe of mascara. Most people didn’t even realize I was wearing makeup; when I said I was wearing it they would say really? But I still wore it, because it made me feel a little bit prettier.

When I liked one of the guys I mentioned above, he told me about this dream girl he had in mind. I can’t remember exactly how he described her, but in essence she sounded like a Barbie doll. “Cool,” I thought as I glanced at my plain brown hair and average body.

My parents didn’t let me play with Barbie dolls when I was a child because they didn’t want me to think that kind of body was normal, or something, lol. Maybe Barbie dolls should be hidden from boys, too.

Not wearing makeup has been revolutionary, because I feel like I’m breaking away from the conventional idea of what it means to be a beautiful woman in this society.

I was at a party a few weeks ago, and I found myself surrounded by lots of cute guys and pretty girls. At first I was jealous of the girls with their perfectly curled hair and long eyelashes – I didn’t have a chance against them when it came to getting the attention of the cute guys (a few years ago I also gave up styling my hair for the same reason I’m giving up makeup). But then I remembered I gave up boys, so it didn’t even matter.

It was a liberating realization, but at the same time I resisted it. Boys like pretty girls. And I want boys to like me. But I don’t want them to like me because I am pretty (I would hope it’s my “great personality” that wins them over.) But they like pretty girls…so I want to be pretty. But I don’t want to adhere to the ridiculous standard of beauty that is engrained in our culture. And besides, I don’t want my value to be found in the attention of boys. But at the same time I still crave it.

Do you follow me at all??? I know it all contradicts, and that’s why sometimes I go crazy.

ANYWAY…here are a few observations I’ve made since I’ve given up makeup and boys:

1) It’s way easier to cry without worrying whether or not mascara is dripping down your cheeks. Every time I cry I wipe the tears from my eyes and think, “Welp! At least that’s not gonna leave a mark.”

2) I’ve found that I enjoy being around guys more now that I’m stopping myself from falling in love with them. I haven’t completely fulfilled my goal of not falling in love with them when they make me laugh or do something really talented or have something in common with me, but now I have a siren in my head that goes NO! STOP! DON’T! QUIT THAT! WHAT WOULD YOUR MOTHER SAY! HE IS PROBABLY DATING SOMEONE ANYWAY! OR HE’S GAY! SERIOUSLY. LOOK AWAY IF YOU HAVE TO! each time I start to fall.

3) With the exception of the party I mentioned, I haven’t really cared whether or not a guy thinks I’m pretty or likable or whatnot. I’ll go to Starbucks with no makeup and messy hair and glasses on and a grungy outfit and march right up to the cute barista boy and order an earl grey tea and strike up a conversation with him, and I don’t care about captivating his attention or whether or not he thinks I’m cute. It’s beautiful, really.

Ummm that’s all I have for now, I guess. But stay tuned because I’ll probably bring you live updates about how all this continues to unfold.

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About Hope Naomi

Lover of all things tea and travel.
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11 Responses to makeup and boys…or not.

  1. Aubrey says:

    This makes me so happy and so encouraged to stick to my guns on BF ’10. I love you and your all-over-the-place-and-back-again thoughts! 🙂

  2. Bono says:

    Just some unsolicited advice from your favorite Irish lead singer: if your fast is meant to show God how much you love Him, make sure that you aren’t blocking Him from showing you how much He loves you, perhaps in the form of a boy. I’m convinced, though, that you are walking in the Spirit so this is something you’ve probably asked Him for guidance on and blessing over.

    Also, I wouldn’t stringently separate personality and looks as most guys are attracted to both in percentages that are often undefinable.

  3. marissavilla says:

    BF ’10!! Thank you for being an encouragement to me during these six months we’ve committed to doing. I’m actually thinking of making it longer. What? I know. It takes off so much pressure of trying to be everything I’m not and enjoying who God made me! Yeah, it still hurts my feelings when the guy at the small group that I just joined walks in late and introduces himself only to the other new girl, who happens to be tall, blonde, and super skinny. But whatever, I’ll never be that so ew, I don’t want attention from someone who does that, nor do I want to be that person. The fast makes me realize when I am being that person. I love it.

    • Hope Naomi says:

      marissa…i decided that i’m committed to this thing forever, lol. it’s just so freeing. i mean, i’ll probably get married one day (with no makeup on), so i’m hoping it will all work out without me having to flirt or look pretty or excessively put my heart on the line.

      so until then i’m just going to hang out with girls. yay. wanna join me for life?

  4. marissavilla says:

    Also, last week when I was in the grocery store with Callan we went through the makeup aisle and he asked me if I wore makeup. I was wearing it at the time. haha. This week, I wore makeup to work once. I’d rather sleep an extra five minutes than put it on. That’s who I am…lazy. haha.

  5. jolie says:

    Dude, the main reason I’ve never wore eye makeup is all about the crying and smudging. I touch my face way too much for that to work. It is nice! I’m glad you are coming to the realization that every man doesn’t need to be sized up within 2 minutes of meeting him. I used to do that too. Our culture seems to think that marriage “cures” these kind of habits, and the minute you get married you magically don’t want to do any of those unhealthy things anymore. Not true! Better to start practicing now! 🙂 ily

  6. Matt says:

    Is it wrong to size people up?

    There is no fairness in the world, and I am not sure it would even be desirable to have fairness. The egalitarian impulse which is spiritual in Christianity and found its political expression in socialism helps no one, it makes people ashamed for doing well and creates a kind of reverse-snobbery among those either not capable or not willing to do well.

    I used to be consumed with class-hatred for the same reason, when I still considered myself a socialist, and those feelings probably germinated in the soil of Christianity (just as Nietzsche argues persuasively that hatred goes hand in hand with Christian love).

    Instead of valuing fairness or equality, I think one should value goodness, and beauty is a form of goodness. Also, if I may say so, I think you are quite beautiful!

  7. Olivia says:

    You’re beautiful 🙂 and I’m incredibly thankful that you’ve entered into my life in these past couple months.. stoked really.

  8. Emma says:

    Hope,
    you are my hero and my role model. I wish you knew how serious I really am. I love you.

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