Makeup as "revenge on a heteronormative world" | Makeup Musings with Grey
"Grey..." is a gender fluid, bisexual, bipolar, vigilante paying back their karmic debt in New York City. Co-Founder of ArtsNotParts, Co-Conspirator of TheFutureisFluide.com, and a partner at Irregular Labs. Currently making punk music in the band Home Alone, doing graffiti , modeling, writing, and making a mess of the modern world... Follow Grey on Instagram and Bandcamp.
My earliest experience with makeup was being told that I couldn’t wear it. I lived in a somewhat strict southern household and my mother laid down the law: I was never to wear makeup because she thought that it was something that “women” wore to seduce or something used as a replacement for genuine self-confidence. Through maneuvering around my mother’s rules and reasons around makeup, I learned at a young age to set my own intentions, value my thoughts and feelings, and never let anyone have control over my image.
My mother had very little patience with me so arguments about gendered politics usually ended with me getting my way and also being exiled. I had to protect myself growing up from verbal and physical attacks all because of the way my gender did or didn’t present itself. And it wore me out to constantly fight the world in order to just be myself. So, when I saw that makeup could reflect what I was feeling on the inside without me having to always explain myself to people,I was sold. My makeup shows my vulnerability. My makeup is apart of my revenge on a heteronormative world.
Makeup has always felt protective — its defensive, and it’s accepting. When people see my makeup they are allowed to be intrigued, they are allowed to make eye contact with me, they are allowed to let their emotions move them, their true thoughts can surface. I feel like everyone is so comfortable with being comfortable to the point where life never changes, new things are never introduced, and how can you evolve that way? People who think they are the best people on the planet will meet me for less than 5 minutes and then all of their insecurities surface, all their homophobia surfaces, all of their racism surfaces. And I can feel it, I can see it happening, it’s rather interesting. For me, makeup’s role in my life has always been to alter reality, to make it a little unreal, a tad bit less mundane, and to wake up the sleeping people, myself included.
I forgot how I actually learned all the basic steps of using makeup but applying makeup is easy when you’re not trying to look like a Barbie doll. No one taught me anything. My glitter goes everywhere, my mascara is runny, and my blush is on my forehead while my lipstick is on my eyes. The way I look distracts the people it’s meant to distract, attracts the people it’s meant to attract, and disturbs the most elementary version of peace within our realm. It’s given me the chance to say less and do more. My image is distorted and my intentions are pure; is the world willing to except that?