Put On Your Lipstick!
August 16, 2022
Why has society just decided men can’t wear makeup? Makeup is a fun creative outlet that everyone should be able to enjoy, yet for some reason, we have just collectively decided that it’s only for girls. That is so stupid!
Makeup has been around for roughly 6,000 years, starting in ancient Egypt as a way to appeal to the numerous gods. Many Egyptians, men and women alike, used powders to lighten and even skin and dramatic eyeliner to appear wealthier and show social class. On the European side of the world, the ancient Romans began encouraging their women to remove body hair and do their makeup, yet they would associate any form of makeup with sex workers and debutants. Right off the bat makeup had become a stigma, people were encouraged to wear it yet shamed when they were actually wearing it.
During the mid-1800s many men were still wearing makeup all around the world because it was a sign of wealth in many countries. Makeup was all fine and dandy until Queen Victoria I of Britain labeled makeup as “impolite”. With her influence, many Europeans began cutting back on makeup, especially men.
Cut to the 1920s, red lipstick and dramatic eyeliner were all the rage. Advertising for makeup was taken to a whole new level which would continue to make women feel self-conscious about their self-image for the next 100 years. Along with this new advertising, a hidden problem arose: the gendering of makeup. By having only women models, there was no masculine representation, turning makeup into a dominantly feminine thing. Just like that, men wouldn’t wear makeup openly until roughly the 21st century.
Even now, it is still rare to see men in makeup. Society has created a stigma surrounding men wearing makeup saying that only men from the LGBTQ+ community can wear makeup because of its more feminine connotations.
We should make makeup genderless again! Why should women be the only ones that get to express themselves through makeup? I personally find men in makeup to be more confident in themselves and more in touch with their feelings. Not to mention, everyone looks freaking fine in winged eyeliner and some false lashes, no matter their gender.