On a temperate Saturday evening, I sit by the mirror at 6 to get ready for a party that starts at 9. All those jokes about women taking time to get ready are in fact, true. There is nothing funny about that. Women love make up. And before anyone says that making an impression on men is not the (only) reason for applying makeup, it partly is.
It’s simply nature – ask David Attenborough and he will tell you that animals would demonstrate best skills, brightest colours and highlight top attributes to attract a mate. Human biology works the same way. Except that I spend a large part of my income on makeup and skincare products because of my own obsession with a clear, dreamy skin, and ofcourse, look attractive.
Make up is art, and us women love it. The glamorous shimmer of the highlighter, the eventone that the concealer gives, the sharp finish of a liner, the chiseled jawline from the bronzer and the sheen of blood red lips – this satiates us. But sometimes, just sometimes, I wonder that if my left eyeliner wing was half a millimeter off from the right eye’s, would that hot guy in the club notice? If I wore a lighter shade of pink lipstick with my dress, will the guy be put off? Do guys really care about what and how much make up we put on?
Confused But Clear
Well, most of the men would answer in a two letter monosyllable and end the topic. But it still makes me think – the amount of make-up that the actresses apply in films, what I myself turn to while heading out to a party – is that the kind of beauty standard expected from us by men? It is mostly just other women who would notice the details and comment on our looks – men usually cannot tell the difference.
Kartik Rajan, writer and poet from Pune says that first, men are not aware about the makeup products being used or “most of the time we do not know if a girl has applied make up. A basic kaajal and foundation is what most women wear, so we are used to seeing them that way. So do we prefer that? I think most of us men, ultimately, yes. A little amount of that almost looks like no make-up but just brightens up the face would be preferred than no makeup at all.
Women v/s Women
But of course, it would be a really rare case if a woman would change the brand of her lipstick because a once a man said he did not like it, or stop wearing a liner because a man told her it does not look good. To some men, makeup is as confusing to them as periods and childbirth.
And most men do say that it does not matter that much. “It does enhance one’s looks, but ultimately it would not make a difference to me. It will always be the girl’s prerogative whether she wants to wear it or not,” says Chirag Vachcha , Social Media Executive and Producer from Mumbai. So if that were really the case, why do the men get attracted to a flawless faced Deepika Padukone or Priyanka Chopra?
“I am sure they have a lot many other factors working in their favour and not just a perfectly sculpted face,” says Mihir Jadhav, screenwriter based in Mumbai. He opines that it is women who give other women a hard time for wearing their make up too loud or too less. “I generally prefer women who wear less make up. Most men would not be able to name even five of the myriad make up products women use,” Jadhav says. He says that no man would ever tell another man “hey! Look at that woman’s eye shadow! I must have her now!”
What Really Matters
Vikram Poddar of Boredroom Comedy in Mumbai says that once you are intimate with someone, there are a lot of things you would not care about then, and make up is one of them. “We can tell the difference between a makeup and no makeup look or filters that are used to enhance looks, but in reality, men care a lot less about women wearing perfect makeup than women think. Eventually, it is the ‘inner beauty’ archetype that wins hearts.” Poddar says.
This debate shall go on till the end of time, but for now, we feel that women’s obsession with makeup products are their own, and that pursuing whatever makes us happy is the key to happiness.
So we suppose that a natural, softer makeup would work more like a charm than an all-glammed-up femme fatale. It boils down to the fact that how we as women let our inner beauty sine. Makeup is a preference of women, and we are all free to choose how we look. Eventually, whoever has to fall in love with us will be seeing our face without the mask made of fizer, foundation, concealer, primer and a lot more. The outrageous trends and going overboard would mostly work if you are a part of the beauty, glamour or any industry that circles around vanity. But then again, the choice, quite beautifully, remains ours.