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What Does Your Makeup Say About You?

posted: 03/15/16
by: Ashley Lauretta
woman putting on lipstick
iStock

How you do your makeup -- and how much you wear -- is a personal choice. Depending on your preferences, you may not feel comfortable leaving the house without lipstick on or you may not even own a tube of lipstick. And though only you can determine how makeup, or lack thereof, makes you feel, we were curious about how others perceived our beauty regimens.

And, it turns out, there's plenty of research showing that people do, in fact, make judgements based on your makeup. Read on to find out what we learned:

Some makeup -- but not too much -- may make you look more competent

The New York Times shared a study done in 2011 that had some interesting findings: your makeup can speak to your likability, trustworthiness and competence.

In the study, participants viewed pictures of women with varying intensities of makeup and they were considered to be more competent than those women whose faces were bare.

This doesn't mean you should wear more makeup, however. But, according to science, it does enhance your social perceptions.

A little blush can make you look healthier

If you do choose to wear makeup, some studies show that just wearing foundation and a small bit of blush can go a long way. Not only does it make you look healthier by evening out your skin

"A recent experiment revealed that women pictured wearing cosmetics were evaluated as healthier, more confident, and even having greater earning potential than the same women wearing no makeup (Nash, Fieldman, Hussey, Leveque, & Pineau, 2003)," according to Psychology Today.

Eye makeup may make you look younger

Psychology Today goes on to say it's all about the eyes when it comes to makeup. Women reported that eyeliner, eyeshadow and mascara enhanced other women's facial attractiveness the most because it makes eyes appear larger--doe-eyed--which is a more youthful trait.

Sometimes less is more

When it comes to wearing makeup, it seems that women often think that more will make them more attractive. However, according to a 2014 study in the Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology, it seems that both men and women prefer makeup that's more natural looking (looks like Estee Lalonde is onto something with her "5 Product Face").

The author, Alex Jones, Ph.D., told the Today show, "While makeup did make faces more attractive on average, it only accounted for around 2 percent of the entire variation in attractiveness judgments."

Perhaps women feel more confident when wearing makeup and therefore appear more 'put together' when wearing it?

Either way, the most important part of wearing makeup is how it makes you feel.

When it comes to wearing or not wearing makeup, Bobbi Brown, founder of the eponymous cosmetics line, says it best: 'We are able to transform ourselves, not only how we are perceived, but how we feel,' she told The New York Times.

Well said!

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