I Was Clueless About Makeup, Until I Met This Guy…

Sifting through plastic wands of mascara and sparkly eyeshadow brushes, Todd looked up at me concerned. “Ashley, what the hell is this?”

No, this wasn’t yet another clueless boyfriend getting flummoxed by a foreign-looking eyelash curler. It was actually a male friend getting ready to school me on my lackluster makeup collection.

See, I’m no good with makeup.  That’s not to say I’m a tomboy — I just prefer to focus on fashion. I chose to study Fashion Merchandising in college and make sure to browse Nasty Gal’s latest merchandise in between classes.

But, in all that time obsessing over which pumps go with my new mini dress, or which pair of earrings I should splurge on, I never found time to focus on makeup. From a young age, I remember reading magazines and swiftly skipping over all the “beauty” themed pages. My weapons of choice through middle school were clear mascara and a blemish-stick. Once, after being given a rainbow eyeshadow kit for my birthday, I decided it would be cool to match my eyeshadow to my orange Hollister tank top. I got asked if I had pink eye at least twice that day.

Lucky enough to never suffer from horrible acne or disappearing eyebrows, I got on just fine with my makeup cluelessness. The lack of money spent on makeup kept my wallet happy, and guys I dated loved that I could be ready in five minutes after a quick swipe of black eyeliner. Coming from a family of four girls who were all equally clueless about makeup (my younger sister rocked the raccoon eye look for a good year), my disenchantment with Sephora never bothered me – until I reached college.

The more girls that I befriended at university, the more strange my tiny makeup “bag” (it’s more like a pencil case) seemed. As my new friends would sit in front of a brightly lit mirror, bronzing their cheeks and applying false eyelashes, I would sit there amazed that it could take somebody this long to get ready. Not to mention, celebrities like the Kardashians began promoting their contouring methods, as the distance between me and the beauty world started to feel bigger and bigger.

But it wasn’t YouTube tutorials or pregames with my girls that changed my outlook on makeup. It was Todd.

Todd was flawless. If he wasn’t gay, I would have probably hit on him. When complimented on his perfect skin, Todd wouldn’t blush and deny the compliment. He’d  retort with, “You can buy it for $60 at Sephora, honey.” His idea of relaxation was watching those aforementioned makeup tutorials on Youtube. He knew everything about beauty products. I recall a specific time when I tagged along with him to Sephora and I followed him around like a child with her mother at the grocery store. He turned around to me and said, “Ashley, you can go look around.” But I didn’t really want to. After all, I hardly even knew what half of these products were.

As we got closer, I started asking Todd to do my makeup for certain events. That’s when he finally looked at my makeup bag, and was appalled. How was he supposed to do my makeup when I didn’t even own foundation? It was around this time that a new inside joke began filtrating through my friend group, that I loved CVS. While my friends makeup bags were filled with NAKED palettes, Chanel lipstick, and Laura Mercier powders, mine was filled with Rimmel London Mascara and Cover Girl eyeshadow. Did I have the money to spend on nice makeup? Probably. But to me, the promise of a new pair of Jeffrey Campbell boots was much more appealing than a $100 cream that I was supposed to slather on my face and wash off at the end of the night

While Todd eventually did take me to CVS to help me pick out a foundation, a blush, and a better mascara, my low maintenance makeup routine hasn’t changed. While my roommate allots herself two hours to perfect her contour, I sit in my room wondering how much better I’d look if I took the time (and money) to focus more on my makeup. Maybe as I get older and my skin starts aging I’ll invest in higher quality beauty products, but until then, I’m sticking to CVS — especially with Todd as my secret weapon to make my cheapo makeup look like 100 bucks.

Gimme More Beauty


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