Provocative opinions aired on the clothes line of life.

Monday, 1 March 2010

Make me under. Make me over. Make me accepted.

There is a very troubling affliction plaguing normal society at present. So troubling in fact that nothing current, whether it be economic, environmental or social, even comes close to casting a shadow over it's menacing glare.

The recession, the deterioration of the polar ice caps, excruciatingly poor grammar, the X-Factor.

Everyone agrees these things are highly significant threats to everyday life, with the latter being the most benevolent, but they still pale in comparison to the lie currently being concealed as a standard glamour tip:

‘Natural Beauty’.

It is the anthrax of the cosmetics industry. A silent and malignant threat, seeking to strip people of their dignity, their self-confidence and the very essence of their individuality. My vehemence for this absurd claim knows no bounds.

Everywhere I turn I am inundated from all forms of media, whether it be social/print/online or through some ultra degrading Gok Wan television programme, with declarations of so-called logical thinking. Urging me to strip away my superficial enhancements and allow my natural beauty to shine through in all its nonchalant glory. What a lovely idea.

Here’s another idea you rich, flawless looking, shiny haired, generic magazine beauty editor, go drown yourself in the Estee Lauder products you have on tap. Your readership consists of normal people who don’t communicate with the world via an airbrushed screen image of themselves. I am one of them. I am an average looking person, with plain features, pale skin pigmentation and an overall poor complexion. Why would I want the world to be aware of this and witness it in my day to day life?
But this term of glaring condescension wasn't always so widespread, it generally used to be reserved for the beauty section of women's magazines. Which was still marginally annoying, but it was essentially a niche topic so not everyone had or wanted access to this blatant stupidity. There would be articles on how to tone down your make up for the office or meeting the boyfriends parents or day look vs night out.

Personally, my make up is almost always the same, I have a no nonsense approach, you either take the cat-esque eyeliner flicks or leave it. And as for night out make up, well just double up on your day look, it's not that difficult to comprehend. Anyway, then the hideous buzz word transcended on to the red carpet. THE quintessential glamorous occasion where you pull out all the stops to look ridiculously over the top fabulous. “Oh look there’s Katherine Heigl, and not an ounce of eyeliner enhancing her features, totally natural.” The woman makes films with Seth Rogen, believe me I’m not jealous of her un-eyelinered features you failed actress turned E! Presenter. When did making plain people feel so inadequate become such a subtle sport?

Then the Facebook bashing groups started gaining momentum and dominating the norm. With their scores of apparent fans popularising poorly grammatically constructed sentences, hurling abuse at those deemed non-natural. All too eager to jump on the bandwagon and personally insult the bewildered. My current favourite being, “Oi Slag, the umpa-lumpas wondered if they could have their face paint back?” (I believe the term is Oompa-Loompa, but that is the title of the page word for word). So, indulging in a spray tan translates to being sexually promiscuous? Is this where we are as a society? Women who don't have expertly flawless make up are judged and condemned? And women opting to be pale aren’t considered to be at all contrived, so they are pure. Yes, that makes perfect sense: date the 'Oopma-Loompa' because they’re game for a laugh and marry the 'English Rose' because they’re the ones who are sensible and focused on their careers.

Well, I'll take the oopma-loompa regime, everyone looks better with a tan. Besides, I don't want to be a rose, they're prickly.

(I loathe Facebook fan pages. Bad grammar, limited viewpoints and uninformed opinions. And adored by thousands).

And just when you thought it couldn’t get any worse, the BBC got hold of the idea and decided to put a reality spin on it. Such a fresh concept, what creative vision. And the result? A truly ridiculous programme with an even more ridiculous title, "Snog, Marry, Avoid?", aired on the utterly ridiculous, BBC3. A channel which is home to such acclaimed programs as, "Freaky Eaters" and "Sex..with mum and dad", oh yes a whole host of jewels in the British Broadcasting Crown. The programme focuses on stripping contestants of their layered make-up and transforming them in to natural beauties, (I loathe even typing the term), through a make-under orchestrated by a faux computer and an ex-Atomic Kitten. Because if any dynamic duo is equipped for the job they are. Supposed hilarity ensues, as the cocky contestants are lined up like sitting ducks and made to endure cheap shots to their superficial veneers by people who are wandering around a City Center in the middle of the day. So basically job seekers and road sweepers, prestigious. The intention of bettering the contestant is quickly revealed to be nothing more than an outlet for fellow human beings to sneer, ridicule and openly insult each other for entertainment. The best part is, this is one of the channels top rated shows, with 750,000 people tuning in to the second series. As Gervais put it, "the Victorian freak show never went away."

Now we're just calling it make-u
nders. Let's strip away a persons sense of security because it doesn't adhere to the conventional so-called perfect looking celebrities gracing glossy magazines and high definition television screens across the globe. I'm sure it's very easy to look effortlessly striking when you've got a personal beauty salon attached to your right arm, primping and preening you every time you cross the street.

Well I want no part of it. I enjoy coating my eyes in thick black liner and giving a new meaning to the word rosy with my blushed cheekbones. I love applying latently synthetic eyelashes to my eyelids with a special paste and bronzing my hairline, thereby giving off the impression that my face is a different race to my body. I won’t be made to feel guilty because I’m obscuring my natural features. It's not who I am, it's simply what I look like and what I feel comfortable in. Excessive make-up gives me confidence; I couldn’t leave the house without it. There. Come get me.