It’s been a while since my last blog post – my usual opening sentence – I’m not even going to beat around the bush with my usual ‘back again’ performance, I’m just going to dive straight into it. I haven’t been blogging because I’ve felt like utter shit since I got back from Thailand (posts coming soon about that crazy adventure though – I’m sure you’re tempted to return to my blog after that sparkling opening ;)). The truth is, I’ve been more depressed than ever before and I’ve not been in my usual mood for spreading joy – however, I had a eureka moment as I sat drying my hair this morning.
It starts like this… I’m really tired of telling people I feel rubbish and hearing things like ‘oh but you don’t look ill’ or ‘but you look great!!!!’ in return – thanks, I know, I’m a naturally gifted beauty, what can I say?;) I’m just kidding, but I am really tired of hearing these things – I’ve heard them for YEARS, be that with my chronic pain or my mental health. Don’t get me wrong, a lot of people are truly well meaning and say it in an attempt to boost your confidence and reassure you that you don’t look like a walking corpse, but many others often say it with a heap of cynicism. ‘How on earth could you be looking so well when you say you feel crap?’ One lady once said to me ‘well you’re wearing makeup so that’s a good sign!’ when really I felt like crawling around everywhere because I had so little energy. So there I am, drying my hair (taking breaks to have a cry and let the frizz grow) when I start thinking ‘wow, my appearance is improving but my mood really IS NOT’.
Here comes the eureka moment… I want to start a online social media campaign using #MakeUpAndASmile to raise awareness that just because people might be looking great, doesn’t mean they’re feeling it. Far too often I’ve feared wearing makeup to the doctors, worrying that they’ll take one look at me with my face on and think I look far too bold and ready for the day to have been sat in hysterics the night before. I’m sure plenty of doctors are wise enough to look past the war-paint and beaming brave face, but far too many aren’t and there are plenty of people in day to day life who don’t understand that, behind the mask, lies a lot of suffering. Someone I know once went to the doctors and said she felt depressed, the doctor replied saying ‘you put your makeup on today, you can’t be feeling that bad’ – I mean, COME ON!
The photo on the left is me, just after I’d dried my hair (you can see the time I gave for the frizz to grow) and on the right is me with my hair done, my makeup on and a huge smile on my face – I feel just as shit in both pictures, but you wouldn’t think that the girl on the right had just finished her third breakdown of the day (at 12pm).
So I ask you, PLEASE JOIN ME in spreading awareness of the fact that someone looking well doesn’t always mean feeling well. Makeup doesn’t always mean a good day, sometimes (as in my case) it’s a coping mechanism, or part of a routine. A smile doesn’t always mean someone is genuinely happy. I’m going to be tackling this on all fronts – Facebook, Instagram and Twitter – using the hashtag #MakeUpAndASmile. To get involved, I’d love it if you could post a photo of you with your makeup on and a big smile, explaining how looks can be deceiving and using the hashtag. If you’ve got a similar experience you’d be willing to share, PLEASE DO. I’d love to raise as much awareness of this as possible. If you could tag someone in your post and challenge them to share a photo, that would be great! Honestly, please just do anything to help get past this concept that someone looking good must mean they feel that way.
If you get involved, let me know – I’ll be forever grateful.
Stacks of love,
P.S. If you want to see my own #MakeupAndASmile post, check out my instagram