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How Makeup Changes Everything: A Social Experiment

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How differently do people view you when you’re wearing absolutely no makeup? What about a full face? One Reddit user decided to set up a small social experiment to see just how much makeup influences perception. For four days, she went to her usual daily setting (probably work) and recorded reactions to her wearing varying levels of product, from barefaced to full-on glam. Her informal experiment yielded some particularly interesting responses.

The comments she received varied widely. While wearing lots of makeup, she was complimented on her lipstick, but was also asked why she was was so done up. Her everyday look didn’t receive any reactions, probably because it was consistent with her usual look. As for her no-makeup-makeup look, many said, “You look so lovely without makeup.” But the kicker was that her actual makeup-free look got the dreaded inquiries of finding out if she was ill or fatigued.

In many ways, this test proves what we already know. Wear too much makeup and people think you’re trying too hard. Wear no makeup, and you’ll be reassuring everyone all day that you aren’t coming down with something. Strike a balance somewhere in the middle and no one will think twice about your look or, better yet, they’ll praise you for showing off your “natural beauty.”

Do you ever get comments on how much makeup you’re wearing? 

—Geraldine

If you’re interested, here’s how to achieve that “no makeup makeup” look.

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