Have you heard of wabi-sabi? Here’s how to incorporate it into your beauty routine
Have you ever questioned how many hours, days, or even weeks you spend applying and removing makeup over your lifetime? It turns out the average female spends 55 minutes each day on their beauty routine (according to Women’s Health Magazine). Why you ask? The simple answer—to feel better about themselves, and there’s no sugar coating that fact.
After quite a heated conversation with my mum, where she tried to explain to me that she puts on makeup to accentuate her features rather than cover them up, we landed on a mutual agreement that it’s a major confidence booster—but I’m not sure that’s the only motivation either… I have a sneaky suspicion it has something to do with expectations.
I have been make up free for over three years now, and never get tired of the look people give me when they find out… though should I really be surprised?! The truth is—I got sick of spending an unreasonable amount of time, and an even more unreasonable amount of money applying makeup, only to remove it at the end of the night—and for who? Myself? Or was it just considered the social norm that I had to abide by? People will try to explain to you that it’s strange for a female not to wear mascara or foundation, but is it really? Or is it just something we’ve been taught to do from a young age because it makes us ‘prettier’? So even though I would have loved to dedicate my decision to wabi-sabi, it had very little to do with it at the time.
What is wabi-sabi you ask? Well the truth is, it’s extremely difficult to define as a single thing—but I like to describe it as finding beauty in imperfection, accident, or age—to allow the natural course of life to run its turn, even if it means grey hairs or wrinkles in places less desirable than your forehead. Wabi-sabi is especially interesting at this point in time with social media influencers depicting this false sense of perfection that we all strive for (consciously or not). When are we ever encouraged to display our imperfections beyond a single “#makeupfree” selfie? When will we learn to love ourselves for who we really are—even if that includes blackheads, pimples, or scars (or all of the above!)? I’m not going to wax poetic on loving yourself but rather highlight it as something to revisit later on.
So I’ll leave you to reminisce on a scene from the award-winning TV series, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel—and if you haven’t seen the series yet, I highly recommend you do right away. In this clip we see Midge (Mrs. Maisel) get into bed with perfectly coiffed hair and a full face of makeup. Once assured that her husband is asleep, she sneaks off to the bathroom to put curlers in her hair, remove her makeup, and apply facial cream. In the morning, she strategically wakes up to reapply her makeup and ensure her hair is perfectly in place all before her husband’s alarm rings. Is this you?