Why Do Women Wear Makeup?

An estimated 44 percent of American women do not like to leave their homes without makeup on. Research shows there are two primary reasons why women wear makeup:

Camouflage – Women who are anxious and insecure tend to use makeup to appear less noticeable.

Seduction – Women who want to be noticeably more attractive tend to use makeup to be more confident, sociable, and assertive.

Those 44 percent of women believe that if they show their natural, untouched face, they won’t be able to accomplish either of those things, and they will be treated differently. It turns out there is some science to back up the fears driving them to wear makeup every day.

Women have it drilled into them from a young age that to be successful in everything, from dating to job interviews to forming friendships with other popular girls, they need to be pretty, and the basis for that isn’t entirely cultural. It may not be fair, but according to the Association for Psychological Science, attractive people are treated more favorably in every area of life, from dating to jobs to criminal trials.

How Can Women Use Makeup to Be More Attractive?

Before we continue, I want to note that this article doesn’t take into account the beautiful diversity of who uses makeup and why. The current research on this subject focuses on straight men and women and is based on the assumption that only women wear it. This is not to say that these tips do not apply if you don’t fit within this specific group, but the currently available research for multi-groups is limited.

1| What Biology Says About Attractive Female Faces

Researchers have discovered two universal characteristics that contribute to the attractiveness of a woman’s face. The amount of color contrast around the eyes and lips

Women naturally tend to have darker lips and skin around the eyes. So, our brains subconsciously note that as a sign of femininity. The more color contrast between a woman’s eyes and lips and her skin tone, the more feminine—and thus evolutionary attractive—she is seen to be. Lipstick and eye shadow are makeup staples because they enhance those features.

Note: The effect of enhanced outer eye and lip color is greatest on straight men, since they biologically are wired to be drawn to feminine-looking, fertile women.

2| How symmetrical and even her face is

The Association for Psychological Science explains that we also like symmetrical faces, even when we can’t perceive the symmetry. You may not realize it, but the majority of faces are slightly asymmetrical–either one side will be wider than another, eye shapes will have minor differences, one cheekbone may be a bit less pronounced, etc. And the fewer of these variations a face has, the more attractive it is perceived. Makeup evens skin tone and contouring, eyeliner and lipliner also can make those features appear more symmetrical.

3| The real purpose of makeup

It is generally true that most people eat carefully to ensure that what they eat supports the main internal organs functions. When cooking, simple, clean ingredients often create the best cuisine. The same principle should apply to makeup that customers use on a daily basis to enhance their appearance rather than mask it. The makeup aims to enhance the external beauty without damaging the skin. The skin is the largest organ in the body. It is a protective shell that needs to be breathed, nourished and nurtured.

As part of the daily routine, most women use make-up to enhance their looks. According to statistics, one out of every three women will not leave without wearing makeup. Most of them wear 60 percent more than necessary. So some may ask if there is more concealment, rather than improvement, happening. Assuming that these research statistics are indeed true, knowing that they differ according to geography and race, is it not wise for a woman to choose what she wears on her skin?