Girls have gotten a lot of criticism for wearing makeup in society. Media holds women to unattainable beauty standards, yet shames them if they wear too much makeup.
Wearing makeup is a form of self expression, not a mask that deviously makes you more attractive to potential partners. Wearing makeup should not even be an indicator of sexual identity or gender for the public.
In contrast to women, men are judged more harshly for wearing makeup. Men who wear makeup have to face the backlash of people in society who believe women are the only ones who are allowed to wear makeup.
I conducted an experiment of my own. I asked six of my male friends if I could do their makeup. Chase Laurent, a Cal Poly SLO psychology major, said he’d love to wear makeup, whereas the other five felt uncomfortable.
“I think boys don’t wear makeup because it’s not socially accepted. Their gender roles are much more rigid,” said Laurent. “I’ll wear makeup for fun but it’s my personal preference not to on a daily basis. I think people should mind their own business.”
Men like Chase Laurent are lucky they can wear makeup in their daily lives and avoid scrutiny. When 12-year-old makeup artist Reuben de Maid went on Ellen to debut his stunning makeup skills, the media scrutinized de Maid for his hobby.
When de Maid isn’t on Ellen wearing a stunning full face of makeup, he showcases his remarkable skills at school in low-key, casual looks.
“I used to get bullied a lot. In my drama group I used to get hit, punched, and kicked.”
He told Ellen, “I tried to, like, brush it off, but brushing it off doesn’t work. I stood up to them and then I told my mom, and it all stopped because they transferred me to another school.”
The media had a harsh mind of it’s own. While some encouraged de Maid’s self expression, other’s were angered and confused.
Some twitter users explained that gender is socially constructed, and therefore, so is makeup being strictly for women. Of course a person does not have to be a female or a gay male to wear makeup. Anyone can wear makeup and shouldn’t be subjected to stereotypical labeling.
People like Chase Laurent and Reuben de Maid have been pursuing makeup hobbies and therefore paving the way towards acceptance for boys who wear makeup.