If you'd ever seen me at the bus stop in the morning, you'd know that I have no problem leaving my house without make-up. You'll also find me sans make-up when I'm working out, walking the dog in the morning, working in my garden or getting the newspaper. But I can't remember the last time I went totally bare-faced to the grocery store or to pick up my kids at school or to a client meeting. I don't wear a lot of make-up anyway, but there's something comforting about a little mascara and a nice shade of lipstick.
At just-about-13, my daughter has recently started wearing a bit of make-up to school and to other places. We've had several "less is more" conversations and she actually does quite a nice job with putting it on. But she looks just as lovely without it; she certainly doesn't need it. That's why I was surprised at her reaction recently when she attended a girls' group camping trip and was told by the organizer that girls should leave their make-up at home.
Boy, was she mad.
After talking with her, it turns out that she's not mad that she can't wear her make-up - she's mad that someone else is imposing their views about girls and make-up on her (That's my girl!). But the whole experience has me thinking about the "crutches" we women use to boost the way we feel about ourselves. Whether it's the make-up we dutifully apply each morning before facing the world, the hair we have colored every six weeks or the Spanx shapewear we won't leave the house without wearing, just about every woman I know has something she does that makes her feel better about herself. You'd be hard-pressed to get me to give up my contact lenses.