The Power of Makeup

Stephanie Carballo, Editor in Chief

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In May of 2015, YouTuber “NikkiTutorials” released a video titled “The Power of Makeup”. In the video she explains to her audience of over 2 million subscribers that she would be applying makeup to only half of her face to show how much fun it can be to use makeup and that she is the same person with or without makeup.
In the description of her video she explains that she was inspired to make the video because she felt that “lately makeup shaming has become a thing. It’s as if putting makeup on to have fun is a shame.”
She says “Nowadays when you say you love makeup you either do it because you want to look good for boys, you’re insecure, or you do it because you don’t love yourself.”
Her views resonated with many as the video stacked up over 400,00 likes and over 26 million views.
People may wear makeup to appeal to males or females, but others do not use makeup for that purpose at all; instead they utilize it as a form of expression or see it as a hobby.
Junior Michelle Rodriguez says “Makeup gives me a little more confidence in myself. [Doing] makeup is just really fun”.
Wearing makeup can simply be a way to enhance one’s natural features or to look more presentable in front of others.
Historically, makeup was used to communicate to others a message. For example, in native american culture face paint is worn as a representation of cultural heritage. Worn for war and ceremonies, it expresses the wearer’s social status.
Makeup has been used both for fashion and to conceal unwanted blemishes similarly to how it used today.
In the eighteenth century England, white powder or “toilette” was used to cover scars that smallpox left on people’s faces. Aside from it’s concealing properties, European nobleman wore face powder to symbolize their status and wealth (
Geishas in Japan wear elegant and unique makeup that visually sets them apart from ordinary. Their theatrical makeup conveys that they are performers and entertainers.
Makeup is in many ways an art. It involves creativity and a steady hand. If you have have ever attempted applying winged eyeliner, you know that it is definitely not an easy task. Applying eyeliner or any other type of makeup requires a certain amount of artistry, practice and vision to get it right.
The influence of makeup is not to be underestimated. Makeup has created an entire subculture around the world. Professional makeup artists and special effects makeup artists make a living off of creating beautiful or extraordinary looks for their clients.
In the mainstream, makeup has become a successful independent industry. Popular makeup brands like L’Oreal and Lancome are currently worth approximately 8.69 and 5.5 billion respectively (
“Beauty gurus” like NikkiTutorials who teach viewers how to do makeup have become Internet celebrities.
One of the most famous “beauty gurus” on the internet, Michelle Phan, has over 8 million subscribers on YouTube. Phan honed her YouTube fame and started her own makeup line and company worth 500 million (
Makeup is an art to be reckoned with.