Lipstick, Camera, Action!

Lipstick, Camera, Action!

Recently I have been lucky enough to provide makeup and hair styling for a variety of photo shoots, from a simple portrait through to Cherish the Dress shoots and even a vintage/burlesque shoot. Working with these ‘real’ women has made me truly realise the power of good makeup and hair styling in giving women the confidence to feel, and therefore look, beautiful and, yes, sexy.
What amazes me is that so many of them find themselves so deeply unattractive. Perhaps it is the somewhat therapeutic act of having their hair and makeup done for them, but almost every one of my ladies has confessed to feeling ugly, telling me that they have dreadful skin, awful dark circles, or terrible wrinkles. The reality is that they have three spots, ultra fine skin beneath their eyes or a few laughter lines. Nothing that makes them anywhere near as troll-like as they seem to believe.
Of course, the media images that we are bombarded with are, in part, to blame, but why intelligent women are still so selective with what they imbibe from these images, I still don’t understand. It is the job of these actresses, models, singers and footballers’ wives to look good. As well as having a personal trainer on hand seven days a week, they also have a personal makeup artist and hair stylist to ensure that they look at their picture perfect best before any media work is done. And although celebrity magazines show us ‘snaps’ of these women with no makeup on pushing a trolley around Sainsbury’s, we refuse to believe that this is the ‘real’ them, instead substituting the fully made up, coiffed and airbrushed version that we see in the magazines.
It goes without saying that I love my ladies – if they didn’t want to look beautiful I wouldn’t have a job – and yes, some of them have dark circles from being up with the baby all night, some of them do have spots from hormones or the stresses of life, and some of them do have wrinkles. But when it comes down to it, does it really matter? Our faces are a map of our lives and who really wants to have lived a perfectly smooth, blank life with no quirks, ups or downs? Ladies, make it your mission to embrace your blemishes, your dark circles and your fine lines… and feel free to remind me of this blog post in about, ooh, three hours’ time when I next look in the mirror!