home what'snew resources ask amy news activism antiviolence events marketplace aboutus

Confessions of a Feminist
Excerpt from New Moon: The Magazine for Girls and Their Dreams

by Layo Akinremi

< back to Girls' Issues main page

If anybody catches me, they'll know my secret and think I'm a fake. I put the mascara wand down. I don't want people to think I'm shallow. Can I wear makeup and still be a feminist?

Actually, it's funny that I used to be so uptight about being "girly." I don't think I'm the only one who's had this dilemma. What about you? When you were little, you probably experimented with lipstick or eye shadow. You probably didn't think it was a big deal to smear pretty colors on your face. But as you get older, you learn that some girls and women reject wearing makeup as a way to reject the pressure of looking a certain way. So it's really common for girls to have mixed feelings about makeup. I know I've gone through different stages in how I feel about it. You're not alone.

Can't Make Up Your Mind

Some girls feel guilty about wanting to wear makeup. That's how I felt. I believe that all women should be treated equally, no matter what they look like. So I kept my curiosity about makeup a secret, afraid to betray my beliefs about equality. Well, there's a new secret, and this is one you can tell everyone-you CAN wear makeup and be a feminist. You can still stand up for your rights and demand to be treated equally, no matter what you're wearing on your face. Wearing makeup doesn't mean you're weak or brainwashed-it just means you're experimenting with new ways to express yourself. If you think it's fun, you should feel free to enjoy it, just like you enjoy other interests you have.
But it's important to realize that you're still beautiful without makeup. Do you ever look at pictures of yourself when you were little? You didn't wear makeup then, but people still liked you for reasons that had nothing to do with your looks. Everyone has unique features-you can highlight your features with makeup if you want to, but makeup doesn't "make up" who you are.

All Made Up and Nothing to Do

Sometimes you might feel like you have to look a certain way to be accepted. But then you can't play too hard, because you might ruin your makeup. It's really not necessary to wear makeup all the time. Remember that you're still a girl, and you have the rest of your life to wear makeup if you want to. If you wear makeup, it should be for fun-not because you're afraid people won't accept what you look like without it.

Clean and Comfortable

If you feel pressured to wear makeup but you're really not interested, then don't! It's good to keep your face free of chemicals. You don't have to wear makeup until you feel ready-or you don't ever have to wear it at all!
Experiment with different ways to express yourself. It's OK if you wear makeup, and it's OK if you don't. What really matters is what you keep in your heart, not what you wear on your face.

About New Moon Girl Media
Since 1992, New Moon has given girls ages 8-12 a place to create their own media and share it with the world. A champion of girl-centered content with New Moon Girls magazine and the groundbreaking online community www.newmoon.com, NM pioneers innovative, ad-free communities where girls develop their full potential in safe, creative and positive worlds. NM is the expert in original, high-quality content made by girls and selected by their peers. Learn more at www.newmoon.com

home | what's new | resources | ask amy | news | activism | anti-violence
events | marketplace | about us | e-mail us | join our mailing list

©1995-2009 Feminist.com All rights reserved.