The Beauty Industry: Makeup

Srivastava, S. (2015, September 02). Hitting Back At Makeup Shamers With Half-Face Makeup Selfies. Retrieved November 20, 2017, from

Student submission by Jamie Berends

Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University.

Presumed Problem

There is a widespread belief in American society that a woman cannot be beautiful unless she possesses certain features, such as longer and fuller eyelashes, prominent cheek bones, rosy cheeks, full lips, blemish free skin, and fuller well-maintained eyebrows. Women who do not meet these standards can be defined as ‘unconventional’ and be looked at as less beautiful as compared to their fellow counterparts.


Create makeup brands to help accentuate certain features and hide blemishes. Promote makeup on media through the use of models with makeup done by professionals paired with photoshop.


Makeup can be dated back to the times of the Egyptians. During that period, Egyptian women dolled themselves up to impress the Gods as their appearance was directly related to their spiritual worth. However, in modern society makeup is used to impress others and hide certain features, which in turn can accentuate others. Now, makeup application is a daily ritual that many women cannot leave the house without first ‘performing’. This application of makeup goes beyond just special occasions, it has gotten to the point where some women put a whole face on before even going to the gym, or just apply it to take photos while they have a ‘lazy day’ at home.

Today beauty revolves around make-up, skin care, and hair care. On average, the entirety of the cosmetic industry generates about 62.46 billion dollars (as of 2016) in the US alone.

Backlash at the cosmetics industry is becoming more widespread as society begins to realize that true beauty is what lies inside and is not completely based upon looks. As media continues to create more unrealistic notions of beauty that make it hard for the average person to recreate, psychological problems begin to rise in the psyche of the public.

Was the Problem Real?

Beauty standards are defined by the media, such as television, as well as peers, such as coworkers. While some may view makeup as a necessity to look more professional or groomed, in all realities makeup should not be an everyday standard. When applying for jobs and positions, those of whom who wear makeup are deemed as higher in the social anarchy because they attract more admiration from those around them. Thus, making appearances go a long way. Whereas those who do not wear makeup, to an interview for example, are viewed as less ‘put together’ than those who do, and tend to attract less positive attention.

In short, appearances in the modern world are what many base their first opinions from. Therefore, the way someone looks has become more meaningful than personality; makeup is no longer used for self-satisfaction but instead is used to seek the approval of those around them.

It is clear that in today’s society we need less makeup because the appreciation of true beauty is beginning to go less noticed. Beauty is without parameters, and allowing it to be contained to one’s outward appearance is a step in the wrong direction that society needs to go in.

Negative Consequences

Overall, there are many negative consequences associated with makeup use and the standards that society enforces unto women. By creating unrealistic standards and images of what beauty should be, women have developed psychological problems as well as unhappiness with their natural appearances.

Women now have issues with anxiety, low self-esteem, and low self-confidence. Those of whom who wear more makeup are shown to have higher levels of anxiety and low self-esteems and confidence. This is because they perceive themselves as less beautiful than others, and so they try to hide their insecurities with makeup. However, there are correlations between people and what they perceive as beauty; this is because everyone’s standard of beauty differs. Women tend to feel less valuable when they are not wearing makeup; instead of focusing on what is going on around them they are more focused on if the person next to them notices that their face might have large pores or is flushed.

Today makeup is viewed as a temporary fix to image issues resulting from societal beauty ‘norms’ that are placed upon women. A temporary fix never truly works because only more anxiety results in order to meet the beauty standards that have gotten out of hand with numerous products being sold to only further women’s insecurities.


Britton, Ann Marie, The Beauty Industry’s Influence on Women in Society (2012) Honors Theses and Capstones. 86. Received from:

Scott, Sarah, Influence of Cosmetics on the Confidence of College Women: An Exploratory Study (n.d.) Hanover College. Received from:

Silverio, Lauren, Makeup’s Effects on Self-Perception (2010).OTS Master’s Level Projects & Papers. 49. Received from:

Brinegar, K. & Weddle, E., The Correlation Between Makeup Useage and Self-Esteem. (2014) Hanover College. Received from:

Jones, AL. Facial Cosmetics and Attractiveness: Comparing the Effect Sizes of Professionally-Applied Cosmetics and Identity. (2016) Kramer RSS. Received from:

Narang, Devina, The Psychological Factors that Affect Makeup Usage and the Perception of Makeup in Different Situations (2013) Virginia Commonwealth University. Received from: file:///C:/Users/jamie/AppData/Local/Packages/Microsoft.MicrosoftEdge_8wekyb3d8bbwe/TempState/Downloads/666-3495-1-PB.pdf

Korichi, R., Pelle-de-Queral, D., Gazona, G., Aubert, A. Why women use makeup: implication of psychological traits in makeup functions. (2008) PubMed. Received from:



Leave a Reply