Mengqi He: Makeup Matters in Dramas…Just Not Too Heavy

“Makeup can indicate someone’s habits, personality, and even identity in dramas…However, I do agree that actors should not wear too much makeup in front of camera. As heavy makeup makes it difficult to see your real emotion from your facial expressions, which blocks the relationship between you and the camera.”

Sandra So: We Could Play Around with Genders More

“I can see why some females feel powered by wearing makeup or dressing up, because the binary rules in the society give you the power when you step into the role and anything in between them makes some people feel ‘uncomfortable’. We have learned these rules since we were kids and it is understandable that everybody wants to be ‘normal’ and fit in the circumstances around you. However, I do think that we could play around with genders a bit more without being questioned constantly.”

Josette Koukoui: Women Are Expected to Look a Certain Way Forever

“Looking at the media, you would find many messages from movies or news that women should try to stay young and beautiful, forever. For example, many actors with grey hair have been described as ‘distinguished’, but it probably would not make female stars more charming. Although there are countless wonderful and talented actresses there, elderly female characters in some dramas are quite stereotyped sometimes, like if you are an old woman, you have to be mad somehow.”

Maha Rahwanji: I Really See Beauty as More Than Skin Deep

“Last Saturday, one of my friends said to me: ‘Maha, you are very interesting.’ This is a much more worthy compliment than simply saying ‘you are pretty’. Being beautiful is not just external, it is also something internal. It is about self-confidence, it is about knowledge and personality. I really see beauty as more than skin deep.”

Yitian Ma: The Idea of Not Wearing Makeup Makes Me Feel Insecure

“I am hesitant when considering about going out with my bare face because I am still worrying about other people’s opinions of me. Sometimes I try to do this: every time when I feel insecure, I ask myself whether I have ever judged one person simply because of what he or she looks like. The answer is definitely NO and I think any reasonable people would choose not to do that. In this way, I am trying to be more comfortable of accepting and being myself.”

Sreyem Lom: I Only Tried Makeup Once, and…It Is Just Not My Cup of Tea

“When I was young, my grandmother encouraged me to love my own appearance, she said:‘You have the natural beauty, do not change it.’ However, once I hesitated and thought about dying my hair red. I asked my grandmother whether it was a good idea and of course she replied to me that my black hair is a natural gift and I really should not change it. It sounds like I am obedient to what my grandmother have taught me, but this obedience is actually a respect for her wisdom in life.”

Yang Qing: It Is a Personal Choice Instead of a Statement

“Some feminists hold that women should not chase after fashion, as it is a business dominated by men. This is partly true as the majority of mainstream fashion media try to ‘brainwash’ the readers to serve their commercial purposes. But what is the difference between the groups who persuade you to follow the trend and those who tell you not to, if they lead to the same result of single standards? So it seems to me that makeup and feminism should not be seen as enemies to each other.”

Plamena Solakova: Makeup Really Does Not Define Women

“It’s entirely a woman’s right to wear makeup or not and I am completely pro whatever the choice is. In general, it is all about having the freedom and opportunity to choose for yourself. If you feel like it, great; If you don’t, also great. As long as you are happy with your choice which makes you feel confident and empowered, that is all that matters.”

Jane Chelliah: Certain Stereotypes of Beauty Are Problems

“I think one point that should not be ignored is the psychological aspect, like what kind of anxiety that women associate with makeup. It is also important to know how women view the value of makeup in different settings. For instance, I wear makeup at work, because I think women are judged by their appearance to some extent while working. In fact, this fear of being judged by appearance exists in many other occasions. But, should it be like this?”