For Every Woman Whose Self-Esteem Is Still At A Middle School Level


I stand in my bathroom. Wash, moisturize, prime, conceal. I’m halfway done with my foundation and it’s already creasing. I spent more on this beauty sponge than some of my clothes, you’d think it would work. Google how to prevent foundation creases. Buy ridiculously expensive, totally unnecessary product from Sephora. Continue.

Why was I cursed with this skin?

Why am I hideous?

I used to look in the mirror and see a trendy long bob with winged liner and flannel that fell of the shoulder at just the right place. Now all I see is a frizzy mousy bob that is reminiscent of my time training with kitchen scissors, two dull brown eyes that seem to be too small and too large all at the same time, and a perpetually downturned mouth that carries all my tensions.

Now for contouring. Make a shadow. Not a lot and blend. Blend. Keep blending. Wait, I blended too much now I look like I rolled in dirt. And my highlight is attracting pigeons. Add oil control toner to Ulta wish list.

How did I revert overnight to my former middle school shadow? I was hoping that after graduating high school and graduating from my training bra that this would be over. I have suffered through the ugly duckling odyssey it’s time to be beautiful. It’s at least time for me to believe that I am. I grow out my hair. I cut my hair. I dye my hair and it’s never enough. The hours practicing eyeliner are never enough. The YouTube tutorials are never enough. I’m never enough.

Time for brows. They have to be sisters not twins. Lightly outline. They’re supposed to be hair-like strokes not a sharpie ad. Are they even? The left one is round the right one is square. Damn it. Where’s Anastasia when I need her?

I am a feminist. I am a daughter. I am a straight A student. I want to write stories that alter the human experience for the better. I want to teach women that they have more to offer the world than their bodies, looks, and sexuality. I’m pretty impressive. I have something to say, yet when I meet someone for the first time the question I always leave with is, “Did they think I was pretty?”

Line the lips and pucker. Fill in the lips and smile. They’re so thin. If I don’t smile and constantly pucker they look more acceptable. I wonder if the Kylie lip kits are back in stock. Must try not to smile.

I have to be more than this. I have to challenge myself to take my own advice. I have to be an example for the women who read what I write and who live their lives alongside mine. I owe it to them, and myself. But right now I can’t see past the disappointing reflection in the mirror.