...as a girl brought up with Glamour and Mademoiselle, rarely without eyeliner for years, I am just realizing I see it all as a trillion dollar industry of perceived need.
So many issues, Osso, in so few words (as usual)!
Makeup certainly IS a huge money-making industry, but so are other, similar industries, at least in our country.
I just got a magazine the other day (a free subscription, was it "Women's Health?") that headlined "Firm up your Butt, Thighs, and Hips in 30 Days!"
Of course I looked down and thought, "Well, heck, what ever is WRONG with my butt/thighs/hips?" Answer: Nothing. Nothing at all.
I'm a bit underweight for my height, in perfectly good shape for my age, yet I had a (brief) moment of thinking: "Oh NO I have to firm up, I'm not Perfect!" and then a longer moment (OK, days) of thinking, "Cripes! My body is perfectly fine, just as it is!"
Thank goodness I've not had TV of any sort for the past 10 years. Who knows what that might have done to my self-image?
We are taught, in my opinion, esp. in the US, that we are not nearly good enough as we are.
Now that I'm over 40 I can happily reply, "Oh, screw that! I'm a good, honest, healthy, law-abiding person who cares about my fellow human beings, and that's good enough for me!"
I've only come to enjoy makeup, as the TOY it is, after realizing that I do NOT, in fact, have to wear it to be accepted as a decent human being.
Those 10-12 years without any makeup taught me that makeup is a huge toy, that it can be just plain fun, a bonus, NOT a requirement.
I had one of those "Aha!" moments some 20 years ago, when I was chatting with a (corporate) co-worker, and she said, "You know, if you don't wear makeup to your interview, and you still get hired, you never have to wear it again." (And she didn't, ever!)
At the time, however, I DID wear makeup to my interview. On my next many jobs, however, I did NOT wear it, and I still got hired! Gads, I thought, people are actually able to perceive Ability, regardless of Looks! What a revelation. Sort of pathetic, in a way, isn't it?