Saturday, October 8, 2011

Fantastic Face

Not wearing makeup has long been a point of pride for me. I don’t need makeup to feel pretty, and wearing it too often feels deceptive. But now I’m in grad school. We’re supposed to be professional. And part of professionalism is wearing makeup. Or so I’ve heard.

Grad students wear makeup.
Serena is a grad student.
Therefore, Serena wears makeup.
Assessment: Valid.

I hoped I was better at syllogisms than this guy.

And besides. . . Makeup made me look nice. Big eyes, flawless skin—what’s not to like? So putting my prejudices aside, I slid liner along my lids and fluffed powder on my nose. And I did feel prettier. Maybe this is all right, I thought.

But by week two, I felt trapped. Running late one morning, I almost forgot to line my eyes. I’ll look awful if I don’t! I thought, whisking out the brush. The whole week I kept seeing my reflection and thinking, This isn’t me. I don’t really look like this. But I shook it off, consoling myself that I looked better than me.

On Friday, I looked in the mirror and grinned in recognition. I looked normal! Then I realized it was because I wasn’t wearing makeup. I paused.Who in my class did wear make up? I couldn't even remember.

I looked critically at the naked face in the mirror. My eyes are fine just the way they are, I mused. I stuck my tongue out at its pink reflection. And my face is fantastic.

Some graduate students wear makeup.
Serena is a grad student.
Serena must wear makeup.
Assessment: Invalid.

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