Facial Make-up – It’s All in the Mind?

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By Petronella Sibeene WINDHOEK PAGE through any women’s magazine, the first few pages will welcome you into the exclusive world of women and beauty. Alongside it will most probably be the Twiggy slender divine body of a supermodel, as women go on yet to redefine beauty and perfection. As if this is not enough, get closer and observe the well-lined eyebrows with mascara and pencilled eyelashes, even a bit of glitter. Welcome to the world of absolute necessity and the joy and pain of make-up. As one devotee acknowledged, “I never go anywhere without my make-up.” This is and has remained the true full nature of Namibian society. Like any other society, Namibia has given a certain image about beauty which makes women feel they have to live up to this standard. Society today has witnessed young women accentuating their lips and their eyes and for one reason or the other, some people especially men have expressed some lack of understanding why this is happening. Interested in investigating why women spend hundreds and others thousands of dollars in buying make-up, New Era interviewed a few young women on the street on the subject. Dazzling Fanny Bomboka believes that make-up gives a woman that extra beauty. Though some people might view it as a mere waste of money, young women who spend a lot of money on lipstick, eye shadow, hair dye and mascara among others consider it necessary that they spend on their looks in the same way as other things. For Bomboka, a make-up budget should not be something that would cost her a fortune. She goes for simple yet good types of make-up. Hesitant to reveal what brand she prefers, she says she buys make-up maybe twice a year especially that she only uses it when she is going out. “It’s actually a matter of choice. No one is subjected to applying make-up, I like it, it makes me feel like a woman, so different from men.” Her friend Rachael Simataa in her response to why women wear make-up, says it makes them look good. The face is the first thing people see when you meet someone, therefore it should be a way of showing your personality before you get to know someone. “The face is what gives the first impression to the people you meet and well, the way you wear make-up can give people an impression of who you are,” she believes. Others were not hesitant to indicate that make-up is a confidence booster, as most women who wear their make-up receive compliments from people who tell them that they look good. As Bomboka puts it, “I like the feminine look that make-up gives me. I want to be prettier than the male sex. As women, we are born beautiful and make-up helps to enhance our beauty.” Another young lady who did not want to be named emphasised that whether women deny or accept it, most of those who wear make-up especially young women, do it because they want to attract members of the opposite sex. “My friend tells me that she applies make-up when she is going out to impress guys and that she enjoys the attention she gets.” Different from this, 25-year-old Rauna Murangi who started using make-up at the age of 18 says her mood for the day and the situation she finds herself in is expressed in her make-up. “When I go out at night I like wearing a bit of glitter or do my eyeliner a little thicker. I think everyone wants to stand out sometimes,” states Murangi. Olivia Hoveka, a hairdresser at the African Trend says she does not wear make-up but of course that does not mean that women who wear make-up do it with some strings attached. “Probably they do it because they care about their looks. Make-up to me is more of a personal preference and a way of expressing oneself,” she stated. Kapena Tjambonde sees it not so much in a different light. “We want to accentuate our beauty. I feel make-up is an important part of a woman’s wardrobe because it enhances her looks and portrays a unique style that allows a woman to feel better.” Beautician Frieda Tuahepa, aged 24, told New Era that though she does not wear make-up, she recommends that those who have the desire do so as it brings out their good looks. To some extent, some people believe that women wear make-up to hide their insecurities. On the other hand, society should understand that make-up is a form of expression and a way for people to bring the best out of themselves. “You can actually tell a lot about a person by the way they choose to present themselves through the use of make-up,” she says. Tuahepa however cautioned users on the type of products they use, indicating that it is important to understand the kind of skin one has and the season that certain colours can be worn. Further, sources also indicated that there are some women who spend too much money on beauty treatments, trying to retain their youthful looks. Sources agreed that some women apply make-up in order to look young, and as such they go for skin smoothing products. They make their eyelashes look longer, full sockets looking deeper using eye shadow. Make-up can give the face some tone, because as people get older, their skin tends to sag from natural decay. It seems make-up acts as both a social tool and a form of art; as such it depends on an individual and the thoughts they attach to it added beautician Tuahepa.