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a bare-faced revolution! (what i've learned going makeup free for 6 months)

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everything else in life.

a bare-faced revolution! (what i've learned going makeup free for 6 months)

Caitlin Surakitbanharn

a few weeks ago, i was going through my archive on twitter (sometimes, you can amaze yourself at how witty you once were...), and while visiting my mom's house for Christmas in 2011, i'd tweeted "I haven't worn makeup all week and my skin feels amazing!"

i will be the first person to admit, as i have in the past, that i have problematic skin.  ever since i was like...maybe....16(?), i've had acne.  i've worn mineral powder for as long as i can remember to cover it up.  i never thought i'd ever leave the house not wearing makeup. 

so i mentioned a few months ago about my discovery of asian skin care, and how it was changing my life and my skin.  and  as a result of this, i gave something a try.

since January 1, 2016, i have put mineral powder (foundation) and/or concealer on my face less than a handful of times.  that's right. i've gone 5+ full months, 155 days...and i've worn NOTHING/ZERO MAKEUP on my face (no foundation or concealer!) for at least 145 of those days.  

and i have learned a few lessons on this journey.


I used to think it was important to buy the best makeup because...if i'm putting it on my skin everyday, it should be the good stuff.  i was never one for expensive face lotions or face washes, or really anything fancy for my skincare routine (CeRaVE was my go-to)... not wearing any make-up, i've learned that the skincare part is actually the important part.  if you put nice make-up on over shitty skincare... it won't reward you when you take it off.  if you put time, effort and care into your skin-care routine, your skin rewards you.  Here is a list of the products i use!


no makeup.  no problem.

no makeup.  no problem.

the first month or so, i kept asking my husband "i'm not wearing any makeup, do i look ok?" and i'd only half believe him when he told me i looked beautiful. i felt plain.  my good skincare habits were paying off and i wasn't getting acne anymore (maybe one pimple a month?)..but i still had scarring.  i had to keep telling myself do NOT need makeup to be beautiful.  but i started looking in the mirror and actually SEEING my face - not my makeup/made-up face.  i was seeing my skin, acne scars and all.  and i saw that it wasn't as bad as i'd imagined.  and now, i look at my face in the mirror, and think ..hey girl!  and i thought i'd look bad in photos...but i don't.  i look even better without makeup!


when you feel and see your real skin every day - you start thinking more about what actually DOES touch it. my hands, my brushes, my pillows.  i started thinking about my brushes, compacts and concealer stick and i realized they are all probably  a huge pit of gross bacteria.  i wash my brushes religiously but seriously there's no way the dirt and bacteria causing the acne isn't getting stuck on it all.  and after a few weeks of not putting the bacteria that causes the acne i'm trying to cover up..back onto my face daily...i stopped getting pimples.  magic!  


zero makeup.  

zero makeup.  

 whitening cream sounds weird to white people.  it's super popular in asia but to the western world, it feels weird and kind of racist or something.  for the longest time i resisted.  i white, i don't need whitening cream?  it felt inappropriate.  but then, we were in Thailand in March, and there's this new stuff that all the asian beauty bloggers were raving about...SNAIL WHITE.  raving about how it transforms your skin into porcelain beauty.  there were even Snail White commercials on the TVs in the elevators at our condo building!  I WAS HELPLESS.  within days i was at the Boots holding the box of Snail White in my hands, turning to Jao and saying....JUDGE ME, I WANT THIS.  i was going down the whitening hole.  well, turns out my fears were unfounded.  whitening cream doesn't make you white (obviously!).  it doesn't even whiten your skin.  IT LIGHTENS YOUR DARK SPOTS!  it takes acne scarring and other dark spots on your skin and LIGHTENS THEM!  the radiance of my skin BLASTED THROUGH THE ROOF!  embrace the whitening!  viva la asian skincare! 


we are all so beautiful and it feels really amazing to let that shine through.  another thing i love about never wearing makeup is that my skin shows me what's happening and i can't ignore it.  when i'm hydrated, well-rested, exercising enough and happy, my skin looks beautiful.  if something is going on, it gets patchy spots of red or a little pimple pops up, and it makes me look at my life, and get things organized.  drink more water, eat better, get more rest, get my ass to the gym, stop stressing.  

and finally...SHOW THE WORLD WHO YOU ARE: once you get over that fear hump (you can't be seen in public without make up...YES YOU CAN!) you will feel SO FREE i cannot even describe this to you.  you will feel unshackled, unchained (BREAKER OF CHAINS! YAS KHALEESI!) and you will wince at the sight of your makeup bag.  you don't have to spend time covering up - you can just spend that time showing the world who you really are! you can just leave the house whenever you want, you can put clothes on (or not, you do you) and just WALK OUT THE DOOR!  you don't even have to look in the bathroom mirror know your face looks flawless!  it's an amazing feeling.

OK - i'm not saying everyone has to go makeup free every day.  if you love makeup, you do you.  do what makes you feel good about yourself!  but i'm telling you - give your skin a chance!  you'll be amazed at the beauty that lies beneath :-)