There I was sitting in ballroom of this fancy hotel in central Maryland. I was dressed to perfection with no lipstick on my teeth (thank God). My wine sat comfortably next to me for easy access and I chatted easily with the young lady next to me. Although she and I shared a few laughs, my heart felt as if it would leap from my chest at any minute. Luckily for me, no one knew how nervous I was becoming. My sweaty palms and shaky legs were just slight indications of my jittery state. This was my first time speed dating and I had to get this right.
After powdering my nose one last time, I smiled at the first man who graced my lonely table. Without uttering a word, I already deemed him a winner: he was dressed quite nicely, looked like he spent a reasonable amount of time in the gym, and when he smiled, I thought I saw the light of heaven as his teeth were so bright. While there were about ten more men waiting for my time and attention during my dating adventure, I was willing to forsake all others to spend more than three minutes with him. At our table, we small-talked about our respective lives, dreams, and hopes. But when I shared that I was a makeup artist with a freelance position at MAC, the heat I mistook for chemistry between us instantly shifted to the coldest spot in Alaska. Mr. Smile-so-Bright revealed his dislike for women who wear makeup, for recreational or professional purposes alike. Well, that surely wasn’t what I expected or wanted to hear. Obviously, he had turned a blind eye to my smoky eye and red lip, but wasn’t at all timid about letting me know he simply wasn’t into me with a career or life dedicated to makeup.
Of course, he seemed very sincere when he mentioned that he preferred a woman who was comfortable in her own skin – without makeup. I’m not so sure what about me gave him the impression that I was in any way uncomfortable but it was became quite evident that he and I weren’t going to be riding into the sunset anytime soon with this caveat standing between us. I wondered how many guys besides Mr. Smile-so-Bright felt this very same way about the women they see walking down city streets every day. Could turquoise eyeshadow and blush really keep me from meeting the love of my life? Would one man be so short-sighted to allow my outside appearance to trump getting to know my dazzling, goofy personality? And then it hit me: why did I even care?
Maybe you’ve been in my shoes. No, you haven’t had to go on a speed date to meet a guy who simply couldn’t appreciate your love for makeup. Makeup, just like a good hairdo, can put a pretty girl in a great frame of mind. It also gives us a little more flair and boosts our self-confidence. It’s the perfect accessory to a fabulous outfit. A boost that only heightens what we already possess. The fact that we wear makeup doesn’t mean we’re insecure or egotistical. It’s simply a tool we use to do the job only makeup can do: to make us into more of the lovely ladies we were destined to be. If Loverman can’t or won’t understand our plights, then what he’s really saying is that he doesn’t get us.
And with that thought, I was more than happy (and relieved) to usher Mr. Smile-so-Bright from my table. While I didn’t meet anyone who floated this boat as I speed-dated, I am happy to report that there were several gentlemen who followed who were more than happy with my career choice and the skin I was made up in.
Show me your best date makeup photos at firstname.lastname@example.org. Next week, I’ll tell you what you should be looking for in your potential bridal makeup artist.