The Daytime Face

My 600-hour adventure in beauty school. Learn more about the project or catch up with Orientation and Week 1.


Miss Jenny announces that tonight, she’s doing Daytime Makeup Applications on everyone.

A Daytime Application, in case you’re wondering, should be very light, with no more than two colors of eye shadow, and minimal contouring. Miss Jenny sees a lot of people walking around with Nighttime Eyes during the day. She is not impressed by this.

She starts by stippling concealer and foundation, then applies eyeliner with short, feathery strokes. You are never supposed to line the lower lid during a Daytime Application, or most any other scenario where you might be applying makeup with at least half your functioning brain cells. Miss Jenny is clear about that.

And so, we watch everyone’s faces transform into porcelain-smooth canvases punctuated by black flutters of lashes talk about our own makeup addictions. I’m quite partial to my pink gloss. Miss Jenny confides that she’s a recovered lipstick addict herself and “it was not good for me or my look.” Now she just needs her gloss and her mascara. Meg needs her eyes and brows to always be done. Stephanie is on a quest to find the perfect under-eye concealer for a woman of color.

Blanche, a no makeup lady who later asks us to explain about Sephora, looks slightly bewildered by the entire operation. When Miss Jenny finishes her Daytime Application, she peers into the mirror while we rave about her golden, glowing skin and glossy lips. “Guess I didn’t know what I was doing,” she mumbles. I’m not sure if she means when she tried to apply makeup in the past, or when she walks around in her own makeup-free skin every other day of her life.

In our workbooks we have written that the main purpose of makeup is to “enhance desirable features and minimize imperfections.” When asked to name two other benefits makeup offers for “our inner self,” we write: “It can boost your self-esteem” and “It can make you feel more attractive.”

Sue can’t leave the house without her full face on. “Maybe if I’m just running to the store,” she muses. “The corner store.”

When Miss Jenny is finished, everyone looks fabulous.

And, somehow, exactly the same.

[Photo Credit: The Daily Mail's Beauty Confidential column.]

Filed under Beauty Schooled, Makeup

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  1. Liz
    Posted November 5, 2009 at 1:03 pm | Permalink

    So does this mean you will be able to do my make up when I visit for Christmas???!

  2. Posted November 21, 2009 at 2:20 pm | Permalink

    Sometimes I do wonder if, as a feminist, I shouldn’t be wearing makeup. I only wear chapstick, mascara and eyeliner . . . and only to work, to parties—not to the store, etc. But maybe it’s time to make a statement and not wear any . . . ?

  3. Posted November 25, 2009 at 3:22 pm | Permalink

    Makeup does make me feel better about myself. I hardly ever wear it, but hey, it perks up my face. Nothing wrong with that.

    Isn’t it sort of like choosing clothes that are flattering/that make you look like you care? Sure, I’m more comfortable in yoga pants (and I do wear my share!) but I’ll slap on some skinny jeans when I need to make an impression.

6 Trackbacks

  1. [...] over where we are with beauty standards these days, I keep coming back to my friend/fellow student Sue, who won’t go to the grocery store without her full face on. Now I’ve seen her without [...]

  2. By Seniors. « Beauty Schooled on April 21, 2010 at 9:24 am

    [...] 1. The Daytime Face. Hint: It’s not the one you wake up wearing. [...]

  3. [...] now cannot find it anywhere. Bah. (State Board rules dictate that your makeup application must be a Daytime Look, which means no more than two colors of shadow, [...]

  4. [...] [Last Ten Weeks] The Practical Report (And Other Good Stuff to Read Today) Jump to Comments Tonight, I take my final Beauty U Practical Exam. This is supposed to exactly mimic what we’ll have to do at the state board licensing exam, so it involves you assembling a whole big kit of supplies, and then demonstrating how to do an arm wax, a lip/chin wax, an eyebrow tweeze, a facial, and a daytime makeup application. [...]

  5. By No Makeup Days « Beauty Schooled on September 23, 2010 at 7:00 am

    [...] this will make me sound naive, but I honestly did not realize, until the first night we did makeup at Beauty U, how many women just do not leave the house without something on. Maybe not a lot. Just concealer, [...]

  6. [...] on my very first night at Beauty U, Miss Jenny demonstrated the Daytime Face makeup application using me as the model. She stippled on a thick liquid foundation from the school’s motley [...]

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