"Beauty is pain," I grew up hearing this phrase in multiple places in my life, and while it was always taken as a joke, deep down I knew it was true. Recently, I have started to question if it had to be true though, do I really need to follow these annoying, and sometimes painful, rituals to achieve beauty? The answer was no. Here are some "normal" beauty practices I have removed from my life.
• Hair Styling
Last October, I chopped fourteen inches off of my hair in an attempt to start fresh and treat my hair right. Since then, my hair has seen no heat or dye, and it has never been happier. I have naturally straight hair, like insanely straight, but for some reason, every day I would attack it with a 400 degree hair straightener like a mad woman. I had also been dying my hair regularly. Now I use healthier shampoo, allow my hair to air dry, and let it style itself, aside from brushing it with my wet brush. I have seen massive improvements since doing this, I grabbed my hair the other day to look closely for split ends, and could not find a single one! Also, now that I don't have to worry about forcing it to look a certain way every morning, I can spend some extra time cuddled up in bed.
• Nail Polish
Can somebody tell me why nail polish even became a thing? No? Thank you. As a little girl, I always loved painting my nails, you mean I can have neon pink or lime green be a part of my daily attire? I was all over that. What ruined the fun for me was my mom and her constant upkeep on my nails, she would tell me if I was not going to keep them fresh and non-chipped, that I could not wear any polish at all. Little me was frustrated, but now, I just want to say thank you to my mom. Nail polish is a mess, it is a hassle, and I do not have time to pick a color that will match my outfits for the next few weeks, paint it on perfectly, spend 10 minutes impatiently blowing on them while they dry and then panicking over the dreaded moment when one chips and I either re-do that nail or take it all off. Not to mention, by painting them so much, I was suffocating my precious nails, no thank you. My nails have been bare since 2015, and I intend to keep them that way forever.
Calm down. I am not completely anti-razor, although there is nothing wrong with that. I have recently made the decision to stop shaving my armpits. In order to keep the smooth underarm and avoid the uncomfortable stubble, I was having to shave my armpits every other day, come on, I do not want to shave more often than I wash my hair. I came to the conclusion that either I would stay in the vicious cycle of prickly stubble, to razor burn, to chafing, back to the prickly stubble, unless I just left the hair alone. My armpits have not seen a razor since August, and while I am not used to having hair there, it actually is not very noticeable. Since it is winter now and I am wearing mainly long sleeve shirts, nobody can see it, but deep inside my sleeve, I have happy razor burn free armpits.
• Full Face of Makeup
In the past twelve months, I have gone on a full circle makeup journey. I went from never wearing any makeup, to wearing a full face, then to wearing a small amount of makeup. Since my full face of makeup all day every day phase, I have thrown away a majority of my makeup and purchased just three products. Not only did I opt for less makeup, I have chosen to use makeup that is better for my skin, vegan and non-toxic. I purchased three items: concealer, mascara and bronzer, from 100% Pure. Before this switch I actually did not know how to do my makeup well, it was very time consuming and hefty on my wallet. Shifting to this minimal makeup routine should add back more time and sanity to my life.
Adding more time to my day while practicing self love and acceptance has been a long, but valuable, ongoing process. Every day, I continue to find things that I am doing for no reason, or doing for a ridiculous reason, that I could stop doing. Comment below any "normal" practices you no longer participate in or that you would like to stop.