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Miss Lissa Knows MILF Manual

Source: Melissa Finney / @miss_lissa_knows

To beat, or not to beat? That is the question…

My paternal grandma is super old-fashioned. She loathes unconventional baby names, rap music, weaves, denim, social media, and most especially MAKEUP.

I was about nine years old when she lectured me about the dangers of lipgloss. “You have natural beauty,” she snapped. “If you start wearing makeup now, you’ll need it later.”

I adhered to the philosophy of my elder and steered clear of makeup for most of my teenage years. I dabbled a little with mascara and lipliner at 14. It was my first year in High School and I was still coming into femininity after years of being a tomboy. However, I was so self-conscious that it made me always think I was too ugly or too fat to wear something. In addition, I feared the opinions or possible scrutiny from any and everyone. Needless to say, my makeup faze was short-lived.

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In my 20s I made another attempt to wear makeup. Never on a daily, just for special occasions. In the back of my mind I always heard my grandmother’s voice and somehow attributed excessive makeup use to disgracing her legacy. So, I kept the face painting to a minimum.

It wasn’t until I got into the entertainment industry that I started beating my face more frequently. It started off pretty light in the beginning and as I gradually grew more comfortable, I’d add on new cosmetics. Just like in my teenage years, I focused on my eyes and lips. No foundation; just a little eyeliner, eyelashes, and lipstick or gloss. I didn’t feel like I had any kind of technique, so I never went overboard with the products.

Miss Lissa

Source: Miss Lissa / @miss_lissa_knows

As my career elevated, I started to get invited to more of the private industry events where I had greater potential to be photographed with celebrities. This is when I became more aware of my facial nakedness. I can actually pinpoint the exact moment it happened.

I was invited to attend the launch party for celebrity stylist, Ty Hunter’s “Ty Lite” phone case. I had worked the entire day and it wasn’t unusual for me to have a bare face on days I wasn’t filming, or when I was running around on the grind. Around this time, my days mostly consisted of meetings or pick-ups and drop-offs at showrooms for various clients. I was also waitressing and working an occasional overnight shift as a freelance merchandiser. So on the evenings that I had events to attend, I’d rush home to shower, change clothes, and beat my face. Unfortunately, this wasn’t one of those evenings.

There was almost no time to do a quick change before making my way to the “Ty Lite” event. Pressed for time, I quickly showered and threw something simple on. I considered doing my makeup, but after looking at the clock, I realized I was running behind schedule. “It would be best to just head out now and forget about makeup. You don’t need it. You have natural beauty”, I told myself an encouraging word and headed out.

This was one of the first moments I made an appearance at an event of that caliber without any makeup but I wasn’t bothered… Or, so I thought.

I calmly enter the venue and it’s packed – keep in mind, this is 2016 B.C. (BEFORE COVID). I hit the open bar, grab a cocktail and let the mingling commence. I rubbed elbows and shared moments with many of the attendees including Angie Martinez, Tanisha Thomas from “The Bad Girls Club” and Kris Jenner’s bae, Corey Gamble.

Slowly I began to shrink into myself due to my lack of glam. With each flash and flicker, I became more self-conscious and I even began to vocalize my dismay with myself, to myself. “Why are you out here looking crazy? “You should’ve found time to do your makeup.” You’re probably the only person in here with a bare face!” (Conversations with yourself can be brutal.)

I made it out of the event alive but it changed my thoughts on lack of makeup in public. Always careful with my skin, I knew everyday usage would never be for me. I like to give my face a break from the pore-clogging cosmetics. However, moving forward, I vowed to never attend certain private events without any glam. This became a huge no-no. Even to this day, I feel pressure to have a beat face when I go to high-profile settings and when I’m not wearing makeup, I’ll hide behind sunglasses. Yes, I’ll wear sunglasses at night, or inside if I’m bare-faced at a celebrity soirée. Don’t judge me.

As a mother of a young lady, it is important that my daughter, Brielle understands her natural beauty, is beautiful. I have a responsibility to create balance with my makeup use and make sure my child understands that glam is a part of my work; used to enhance my looks so I’m more appealing on camera, and not a daily necessity. Nor is it, a tool to aid in boosting my self-confidence.

Fortunately for me, getting Brielle to grasp the idea of “natural beauty” hasn’t been a hard task, thus far. My daughter keeps lipgloss handy but she isn’t into any other cosmetics and doesn’t like when I wear makeup, AT ALL! Since I rarely wore makeup in her early years, she never gravitated towards makeup. There was a time I had a professional makeup artist beat my face when Brielle was either four or five years old. She was mortified when the finished product was revealed. My baby took one look, frowned, and snarled at the makeup artist, “why did you do that to her face?”

Now at age 12, Brielle never lets me do my makeup without her “mom, you don’t need makeup” monologue. I always reassure her that she is correct but deep down I know that it’s best for me to show her that she’s right. By limiting unnecessary makeup moments and proudly parading through life with a fresh face, I’m teaching my daughter the very lesson my grandmother embedded in my head. I am naturally beautiful.

I truly feel like I’ve found my balance between slaying like Beyoncé but still coming outside beautifully bare-faced… like Alicia Keys.

More From The MILF Manual:

Miss Lissa’s MILF Manual: How I Navigate Motherhood, Meditation & Career

 

Miss Lissa’s MILF Manual: Motherhood And Makeup; To Beat Or Not To Beat?  was originally published on hellobeautiful.com