6 Lessons in Beauty and Makeup I’ve Learnt Over the Years

Lessons in beauty and makeup I've learnt over the years
Image via Unsplash / Annie Spratt

I used to be such an un-makeup snob. You know the type? The type that says “makeup is only for the vain”. Not proud of it, but I certainly used to be member of that camp till a few years back. I never trashed anyone for choosing to wear makeup, but I certainly did think that I don’t need any makeup, because I am good enough without it.

It’s a mystery to me how I came to associate makeup with vanity – I mean, my mom used to put on lipstick and a little bit of compact almost every time that she stepped out of the house, and she’s far from being a vain person. Also, I don’t remember being particularly schooled to think that makeup was bad. So it’s amazes me to look back and realize how strongly I correlated using makeup with vanity.

Anyhow, for the longest time (read: pretty much until I got married), my only form of “acceptable” makeup was lining my lower lash line with kohl. I doubt that my makeup kit during that time extended beyond kohl, a couple of lipsticks, maybe one eyeshadow, and an almost perpetually expired bottle of foundation. If I ever really felt fancy, the lipstick would double as blush, and I would use the kohl as eyeliner. I kid you not! Even on my wedding day, I visibly cringed when the makeup artist put red lipstick on me to go with my wedding saree (I repeatedly kept telling her, please keep it light, please keep it light!!!). Yes, I was THAT person.


I don’t regret being that un-makeup person when I was younger. Not for a second. I’ve never looked back at my photos and wished, damn, I wish I had more makeup on that day. If I was getting married today, would my makeup look have been different? For sure, and that’s because I am a different person today than when I got married nearly five years ago.

Did my “light makeup” on my wedding day bother me? Hell no! It was what I was comfortable with at that point of my life, and I was so beyond stoked to be marrying my best friend, surrounded by the love and blessings of our loved ones and dearest friends, that I felt like I was positively glowing from within. There is no makeup in the world that can substitute for true happiness, my friends.


Fast forward to today: I’ve truly and totally turned into a makeup-loving person. No, I still can’t do wild tricks with makeup, but damn if I don’t enjoy the process of putting some on!

The transformation has been slow and subtle. Part of it had to just do with increased overall awareness and social media. Also, seeing my sister-in-law use makeup flawlessly and truly enjoy it, pushed me to start dabbling a bit as well.

So well, here I am. Proud owner of a somewhat overflowing skincare bathroom cabinet and makeup drawer. I still don’t wear a lot of cosmetics on a daily basis (a tinted moisturizer, kohl on my lower lash line, and a nude-ish lipstick is basically what constitutes my work-wear makeup routine) but I love amping it up for special occasions.

And to be fair, I’ve started veering more towards skincare rather than makeup purchases, but it’s been super fun getting to know this late-blooming beauty and makeup loving side of myself.


Along the course of my falling in love with the world of beauty and makeup, I’ve learnt a few things and wanted to share them with you, especially if you’re just starting out with makeup.

1| Water and sleep are your best friends FOR GREAT SKIN

If you keep yourself well-hydrated (with water, not alcohol :)), your skin reaps the benefits. And do I even need to get into how sleep affects your skin? It’s not called beauty sleep for nothing.

2| Skincare before makeup

Learning to love makeup is learning to take really good care of your skin. After all, your skin is your canvas. The smoother the canvas, the easier all the stuff will go on. So invest in skincare first, makeup later.

3| Experiment

With your looks, with products, with tools. It’s easy to fall into comfortable patterns and keep repeating the same old stuff. But one of the fun-est things about makeup is the wide variety of choices that is available to you. So put that choice to good use.

Like, I know now that I much prefer a makeup sponge for applying foundation than my fingers or a foundation brush. Also, after years of trying to find lipstick that I was truly comfortable with wearing to office, I recently discovered the Crushed range of lipsticks from Bobbi Brown, and I am floored, you guys! Anyway, bottom line, experiment! And have fun while you’re at it.

4| Too much makeup is a thing

With most things makeup, I believe keeping a light hand is really important, unless you’re going for a certain look. You know what I am talking about. Foundation that does not match your skin tone and makes you look like a white ghost. Mascara that makes your lashes stand out like daggers. Too much mascara on the lower lashes. Lipstick so matte that it makes you feel like your lips will fall off. Overlining your eyes. Highlighting all your features at the same time. Those are a few basic things I’ve learnt to pay attention to over the years. I still make mistakes, but I’d like to think I’ve gotten better with these things over time!

5| Remove your makeup at night

Seriously, you guys. This is so so so important, especially as you hit the other side of your 30s. Your skin becomes far less forgiving as you grow older, and sleeping with a full face of makeup will make your skin feel like shit the next morning. I still make this mistake once in a while and regret it every single time.

6| Be unapologetic about your choices

This goes for whether you’re a makeup person or NOT. Do not let the world make you feel bad about your preferences. You can’t please everyone. There will be naysayers on either side of the fence. If putting on makeup makes you happy, do that. If you couldn’t be bothered with all the makeup hullaballoo, don’t. You do you.

Conversely, if you find yourself becoming a makeup person from being a rather outspoken no-makeup person (or vice-versa!), don’t fret, rather, enjoy the process. You don’t always have to be who you used to be!

I’d love to know about your makeup journey – when did you really start getting into makeup? What are some of the things you’ve learnt along the way? Are you more into skincare or makeup? Hit me up in the comments below!


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