From the tender age of twelve I began experimenting with makeup; every morning awakening at the crack of dawn to begin a meticulous ritual that would rid me of any bumps or blotches. With my newfound skills, I would craft myself a new face, a better face, free from my own self-loathing - this was more than a vanity thing, this was about finding the courage to love myself. I felt powerful spreading my lipstick on in the mornings, ready to take on a new day, my eyeliner so sharp it could cut anyone standing in my way.
Secondary school was like a battleground and I wore my makeup like warpaint. Regardless of the inner war that was waging inside me as I was bullied throughout school, my mascara didn't budge an inch. I was more beautiful than them even if I was breaking inside. Looking back, there was rarely a time where you'd see me without makeup and I find that sad. As the years rolled on and I grew older, I began to realise that people shouldn't love you based on your makeup, that the people you surround yourself with should love you for being you.
So, I took the mask off. It wasn't a speedy process, as more days I'd feel more self conscience than others, but slowly and surely, I simply began to not give a fuck. Understandably, many of you reading this can't imagine going a day without makeup as its part of your routine, it gives you a confidence boost etc and that's okay, but that's not me anymore. I don't wear it going to the shops, I don't wear it to university or work. I feel free and raw and open and I LOVE how I can scratch the shit out of my eyes without the concern of messing up my mascara. For the longest time I was wearing makeup to impress others and satisfy the demon inside me who was picking me apart.
Don't get me wrong though, I still love nothing more than giving myself a good pamper session and slapping on as many layers as possible in preparation for a night out, because I'm only human, right? I still buy makeup regularly for events or special occasions but generally, if you meet me down the street, I will have literally woken up like this (winking eye emoji). Yes, I do savour those precious extra minutes I have in bed more where I could be goin' all MUA on my ass, but for the most part, I'm just happy to finally feel content in my own skin.