Tuesday, April 15, 2008

The Naked Face

One Sunday morning, I was online surfing net. My best friend MSNed me. She wanted to show me some earrings which she has made for her online shop – check out Minikazari Earrings , thus suggested that we switched on the webcam. We didn’t realise or thought at the point in time that we are still in our pyjamas, messy hair and naked face. When the camera was switched on, both of us looked at each other and laugh…

It has been years that we have not seen each other’s naked face. Mind you, the last time she didn’t put on any make-up was when she was still in secondary school and the last time I didn’t have any make-up on my face was when I was in poly year 2. We have got so used to each other’s painted face that we have almost forgotten how we looked like previously.

Both of us looked so “different” from our usual image. I thought she looked gray (immediately she claimed that she is sick…) and she thought I looked like a butch (I had just cut my hair short…). Of course that entire conversation are said jokingly (with some truth), but it just make me realised how dependent we are on make-up and how we have got so used to the image projected by each other.

Then recently, I was revamping my room. I happened to find some old photos which were taken during my secondary school days. If only I could post them here and all of you who know me probably could not even recognise me. Ok, I am never photogenic, but those photos were horrible. No amount of photoshop could save them. I looked hideous then. Thank god for putting me through the “ordeal” which changed my life. I just cannot imagine where I would be if I still looked like that now.

I believe a lot of women out there probably faces this kind of problem too – being very dependent on make-up as it creates the familiar image which outsiders are so used to. I mean how many of us dare to show others your naked face? How many of us dare to go out without any make-up on the face? I have to admit – I can’t. I have to get my brow defined and concealer applied onto my eyes lid at the very least before I can step out of that door.

A lot of people would just rebut that looks are not really that important, what matters most are inner beauty, confidence, intelligence etc. I never quite buy that theory as I believed first impression is important which people judge mainly by looks. I, myself, have seen different reaction and attitude from people who treated me differently before and after my image change. No doubt, I am still very big, but people treat me differently depending on how I looked. I have never dare to go out with a shabby image ever since.

Make-up can brighten a dull face, give a rosy and robust look for someone who looked sickly and even creates a dynamic face for a face that is originally flat. Make-up is very much an art and is not like you put on blue eye shadow and think that it. There are a lot of skills and techniques that can transformed a person’s looks with a dash of colour.

I remember telling my mum one morning while I was “painting” my face that I feel like an opera singer preparing to sing on stage soon. I feel there is some truth in it. Make-up acts as a confidence booster and as a shield for me. It also creates that mask for the character which I played every day at work. Sometimes, I feel that without it, I cannot do the things that I have done. I also wonder whether people will still take me as seriously without the “mask”.

My naked face is sadly listless and uninteresting. People do not recognise me if I didn’t put on make-up and that had happened a few times despite the unusual body size. I can even blend and disappear into the background if there are no colours on my face. Come to think of it, it is very sad that people will only get to know the image and not the person beneath it. Then again, do you really want to know the real person?

I wonder…

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