• Ben Pechey

The Power of Makeup 




As a 25-year-old, I very rarely get the chance to say I believe in magic and genuinely mean it. When I talk about magic, I don’t mean the rabbit in a hat kind of thing that fills the collective idea of magic. I am talking about the enhancing power of the world of cosmetics.


If you have ever seen one of the half-face of makeup pictures that fill a certain void of the internet, you too will say that you believe in magic. The way that liquid, powder and minerals can transform a visage, increase confidence and create excellence is truly awe-inspiring.


Yes, we are talking about makeup, and the magic it can create. This is 21st-century magic, grounded in reality. Throughout 2018-19 I experimented, used and played with cosmetics for fun and fulfillment. I can happily say, I have never looked or felt better.






Of course, there will always be naysayers. Wearing makeup can cause many issues for those around me. It wouldn’t be my words if I didn’t try and counter those comments, and so that’s what I’m going to do.


Okay, vanity, which is supposedly a sin. Well, there are aspects of vanity in all of us, whether it be traditional markers such as maintaining our appearance, or less obvious markers such as pride. There is vanity in all of us, and as long as it does not rule our existence, there is no harmful side to vanity.


I curate my own appearance for my pleasure, it makes me happy, so the upkeep which could be seen as vanity, is a personal pursuit, so it’s not for you to comment on Carol.







What about gender? There is not a day when this subject rears its head. History has shown us that at certain times binary markers of gender shift massively. At the moment the majority of society is seeing gender as very ridged ideas, and any show of diversion from this set of rules is seen as subversion.


Yet if we look through history, we see entire civilisations using cosmetics. The Egyptians were one of the earliest civilisations to rely on cosmetics for their enhancing magic. All genders used black pigments around the eyes, with blue and green on the lids and under the brow bone. Reds were used on cheeks and lips, again by all people. They believed that the cosmetics would ward off evil, create a closer relationship with their gods and to protect them from infection.


It is just current perceptions of gender roles that have enforced such clear gender boundaries when it comes to the use of cosmetics, and in reality - it’s just pigment, lines, and shapes. So regardless of gender, if you want in on the magic of makeup, you really should just go for it.






The final issue I think worries people, is the idea of a makeup look being ‘too much’. Bold colours are my thing, and that what I enjoy about playing with my look! Of course, some people wouldn’t wear gold blended into orange with a winged eyeliner and star stamps in the corner of their eyes day to day, but remember this, it is you who are wearing the makeup, not other people. So if it is not too much for you, then it is not an issue. End of conversation.


So enjoy the power of makeup, and embrace the magic it can offer. As always I will be putting my best face forward, and I urge you to do the same my darling.



Shot by Rachel Pechey

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Jumper: H&M X Pringle

Trousers: M&S

Heels: New Look

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Ben Pechey

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