I'm like a magpie: I love anything that sparkles and shimmers, including clothing, makeup, and anything with sequins on it. So out of curiosity, I wanted to see what would happen if I wore sparkly accessories or beauty products in everyday life for a whole week. While I definitely don't possess the skills of a qualified and professional MUA, I hoped to try a range of different styles that incorporated makeup, glitter, and just about anything bedazzled.
I have experimented with glitter and sticking things on my face in the past, but this experimentation has usually been limited to a night out or to accompany a Halloween costume. I know I'm not the only woman who adores glitter and sparkles, but I wondered what people would think if I wore sparkly things in the light of day, while continuing with my everyday life. To me, wearing glitter and sparkly clothing is a way to instantly inject a load of glamour into my look, but I'm aware that others might find such shimmer a little bit "childish" or otherwise "inappropriate" for a grown ass woman.
While I hope that women these days don't feel pressured to dress up for every single activity like housewives in the 1950s might've, I find it weirdly soothing to add a little sparkle into my daily life when the mood strikes. Besides, I think playing with fashion in a way that makes one stand out shouldn't be reserved for All Hallow's Eve. So here's what happened when I wore sparkly things on my face for a week.
Day 1: The Subtle Stars
To kick start my week, I thought I would ease myself in slowly. So I sported some gorgeous, iridescent stars that were actually table confetti. I stuck them to the outer corners of my eyes in a tight trio with Lime Crime's Glitter Helper. I really loved this look and thought it could be worn for any occasion, be it a day at the office or a party.
When my fiancé arrived home from work, he didn't mention anything about my starry eyes. I was slightly disappointed that he didn't have a stronger reaction. When I asked him if he liked my new look, he said, "It's alright, isn't it?" Perhaps I'd have to amp up the sparkle on Day 2.
Day 2: The Glittering Freckles
On the second day of my challenge, I decided to throw subtlety out the window. I had seen some awesome snaps of ladies on Instagram experimenting with faux freckles and as a freckle lover, I knew I had to give this trend a try. So I went with sparkly freckles, because why not? I chose to use Technic's Electric Beauty glitter eyeliner in "Bronze," as I thought it would match my pale complexion well. For the majority of the day, I was sashaying around thinking how avant-garde I must appear.
However, when I asked my partner what he thought, he answered honestly, "Looks like you've got spots... From a distance." I then questioned whether he liked it or not, and he replied, "No not at all. It looks like loads of ants have walked across your face or something."
We then proceeded to take his sister and her husband to purchase a new car. After a while, when nobody had commented on my new look, I mentioned that I was wearing this "unusual" sparkly makeup as an experiment. My fiancé's sister said she hadn't commented on it because she thought it would be something for work. When we got to the home of the people who were selling the car, I totally forgot about my makeup. The strangers didn't even mention my sparkly freckles. It seemed the sparkly dots were not a hit.
Day 3: The Sparkling Eyes
For my third day, I wanted to go with a classic sparkly beauty look: stick on gems. To really embrace this style, I decided to wear a pink, lacy blouse with an embellished collar. As much as I liked the appearance of this style, I did not enjoy the distracting reflections the gems caused in my glasses when the light from my computer shone off of them.
When my fiancé got home, he took one look at me and asked, "What is that on your face?" It was becoming clear that he was not familiar with high fashion or experimental beauty trends. He continued, "Still weird, isn't it? But not as weird as the blackheads." Clearly, he wasn't impressed by my sparkly looks so far. I was looking forward to the rest of the week...
Day 4: The Bejeweled Heart
It was over halfway through the experiment that I decided to go for a cutesy look. I stuck a red, bejeweled heart onto my cheekbone in an attempt to channel Harley Quinn from Suicide Squad but with a softer edge. I wore a heart print shirt to complement my new facial accessory, and I really loved how it reminded me of a super chic beauty mark. However, seeing it glinting out of the corner of my eye was not as easy to love.
As usual, my partner didn't quite understand why a grown woman would want to stick sparkly things on her face. So he plainly said, "It's better than the blackhead face," once more. I looked forward to his reaction each day, and enjoyed his hilarious expressions in regards to my latest sparkling creation.
Day 5: The Shining Sequins
On Day 5, we were visiting my mom to celebrate her birthday, so I stuck some silver balloon sequins on my face with Vaseline to mark the occasion. By this point, my fiancé had run out of ways to say he thought I looked odd, so he didn't have much to contribute. My mom gushed about how nice I looked and thought the sequins were "sweet." She lives in a city not far from me, and the general public was too busy hustling and bustling past us to take notice of my face.
When we arrived back to the small, seaside town where we live, we went to the supermarket. I didn't bump into anyone I knew, although one woman literally stopped in her tracks and stared at my face for a couple of seconds. I wanted to ask, "What's wrong lady? Never seen anyone with metallic balloon shaped confetti stuck to their face?" But I carried on shopping instead.
Day 6: The Glittering Cheekbones
To achieve this look, I spread some Vaseline along my cheekbones and gently patted Lime Crime's Zodiac Glitter in "Ophiuchus" onto the jelly. I liked the look, but felt a little nervous about wearing it in everyday life, considering it was rather unusual and outside my comfort zone.
We needed to take another trip to the supermarket, and my fiancé seemed a little apprehensive at the thought of standing next to someone who looked like they'd just pressed their face into a plate of glitter. When we arrived, the store was almost closing so the shoppers were hurrying to get to the cashiers. However, I saw an acquaintance of mine perform what looked like a double take when she saw me. Perhaps luckily, she was on the phone so she couldn't stop to talk. I was relieved, because as much as I liked this look, I really didn't feel comfortable wearing it while grocery shopping, especially in such a small town.
Day 7: The Sparkling Pout
I loved this final look and how feminine it made me feel. To achieve this glittering pout, I first applied Lime Crime's Carousel Gloss in "Candy Apple," which was sticky enough for me to dab the aforementioned Zodiac Glitter straight onto my lips. By this point, my fiancé had seemingly tarred all sparkly makeup looks with the same brush; but my friend (who I'm in a band with) came around for a rehearsal and she loved it. In fact, she liked it so much that we discussed adopting this look for some of our Christmas concerts.
Would I Wear Sparkly Things On My Face Again?
After wearing sparkly things on my face for a week in everyday life, I would recommend anyone try it regardless of what others may think. I embarked on this experiment thinking that I'd get a lot more harsh feedback from the general public (because "grown women shouldn't wear sparkles" or whatever), but instead found that few humans had strong reactions at all. Besides the teasing jokes from my partner, the comments I received were generally positive.
When it comes to fashion and beauty, a lot of us tend to set "rules" for ourselves. "I can't wear this because I'm too old." "I can't wear that because I'm not thin." But these so-called rules are products of beauty standards set by others — call it society; call it the media — and we don't have to choose to adopt any of them unless that's what we prefer to do for ourselves. So if you love a bit of sparkle, I say go for it!
Want more beauty tips? Check out the video below, and be sure to subscribe to Bustle’s YouTube page for more hacks and tricks!
Images: Phoebe Waller