The Beauty Experiment

Celebrities without their makeup!

by on Jul.26, 2010, under hair and skin, make-up

It must be trending because there was another one in the checkout line today: stars without their makeup. Katie Holmes had a big nose zit, Tyra Banks went without mascara, Angelina Jolie looked tired.

I’m not sure if we’re supposed to be surprised, horrified or encouraged by movie stars’ normality when they are not working. We all know they don’t look like Oscar attendees when they get up in the morning, but I suspect some childlike part of us doesn’t want to believe it. These barefaced pictures are sort of like a nasty friend telling us there isn’t really a Santa Claus, while at the same time offering a doorprize. “You’re just as pretty as they are,” the shots whisper, “actually, given the right eye makeup and wardrobe, you could be a star, too.”

I was about four years old when I thought being a star would make me flamboyantly happy and endlessly delighted. I imagined I’d walk on clouds, have six-foot-long hair and be rich, which meant I’d have a horse with a white mane and tail and an automatically replenishing roomful of Hershey bars to slide around in. My daughter, age four, has her own star myth involving costume balls and airplane travel. Neither myth admitted the slightest awareness of acting or professional television work.

What’s your myth? How old were you when you thought it up? Does it do anything for you now?

3 Comments for this entry

  • Rebecca Narva

    It was all about clothes when i was growing up. I had glamorous big sisters who were way more “girlie” than me, but even though I loved to be outside and up a tree as a kid, our lives were soaked in clothes-making and fabrics because our mom was a great seamstress. Of course, I really always longed for the right clothes from the right store in our very wealthy and prestige-conscious community. So wearing what my mom made, or thrift shop hand me downs (with classmate’s name tags – ugh)or sisterly hand me down always felt pretty second rate. Now – decades later, I love clothes and feel free to dress up or down or just like I want to. I will buy an expensive dress for a special occasion and I love to shop for treasures in 2nd hand stores because I know good fabrics and good design. Now, finally, I’m confident of my style and choices.

  • Carol Blakeley

    I too as a child was fascinated with the ‘stars’ but a couple in particular. The Sound of Music was my obsession and as an 8 year old in the mid-60’s going to the theater over and over to see it was expensive and unheard of. Somehow I managed to get various people to take me to the Grand Helman’s Theater (a one of a kind) 8 times to watch Julie Andrews and Angela Cartwright on screen. I would spend hours flitting around the house pretending to be Maria or Brigitta to the music on the LP. My myth/fascination however became some kind of parallel sub-conscience universe since I ended up marrying a man with many kids, the difference being there is NO musical talent on his side what so ever.

  • Donna Upton

    Rock star. I think this started when I was around 11. I’d sing along with Heart records in my room, using a bicycle horn or hairbrush as a mike, and pretend my family couldn’t hear me. In my fantasy, I was the young singer-songwriter newcomer/ingenue, whose brilliance and quirky beauty attracts the bigshot male superstar (this role played by various celebrities over the years). By the time I reached my teens, I was a hardcore music fan and clubgoer, but too insecure about my sexual appeal to actually doll myself up and flirt with the musicians – I felt too scrawny, too nerdy looking.

    When I was 39, I finally started singing in public, in a few bands, strictly amateur stuff, a hobby. It was a great feeling. And I married a musician with a dayjob (not the lead singer – the tuba and bass player). This was quickly followed by pregnancy and the SAHM life, and currently, there is very little musical activity in either of our lives.

    As I stare down 50 (I just turned 47), the old fantasy has returned with a vengeance – except it’s a backwards fantasy, involving my younger self, who wouldn’t be afraid to wear sexy clothes and more makeup, and climb up onstage with the boys, and write songs. So it’s kind of a painful fantasy in some ways – filled with regret – but it’s soothing too..

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