Bright Side

19 Photos That Prove People Treat Women Wearing Makeup Differently


According to research, 84% of women don’t like to make themselves up but still consider cosmetics to be a way to reach their goals. That’s why it’s not surprising that every other woman applies makeup every day. According to other statistics, many women make themselves up even before visiting a gym — every sixth woman to be precise.

Bright Side explored how the attitudes of people toward women with or without women change. The members of our editorial staff also shared their opinions on the topic — you can find their stories in the bonus section of the article.

1. “When I’m not wearing makeup, I’m not really noticed. But when I have a full face on, old ladies give me dirty looks and men leer.”

2. “When I am not wearing makeup both women and men want to be friends with me. Once I apply cosmetics, girls start feeling jealous, while men try to make indecent offers.”

3. “I have applied makeup about 10 times throughout my entire life. I rarely use mascara because I feel lazy, I can’t do it properly, and my husband doesn’t like that ’mask’ on my face.”

4. “When I am wearing full makeup, I notice that people are very, very nice to me. Men approach me more — even with my husband by my side. With ’no makeup,’ when my brows are invisible, I hardly ever get any compliments at all.”

5. “I don’t really see much of a difference between when I wear makeup or don’t. What makes more of a difference for me is whether I wear tight/revealing clothes — women give me dirty looks and negative comments.”

“Once in Lima, Peru I was wearing a short dress and just lipstick for makeup and was going out in the evening when an older woman looked me dead in the eyes, ’tsk-tsked’ me under her breath and CROSSED HERSELF.”

6. “I don’t like bright makeup — all those artificial lashes and such are not my cup of tea. If I don’t wear makeup, I am invisible. Otherwise, men start staring at me while women leer.”

7. “I look like a 16-year-old girl without makeup. Sometimes I’m not even allowed in bars. I wear bright makeup when I want to be perceived as an adult woman.”

8. “People can be really rude when they see me all dolled up and nosy as well, asking what I do for work or if I had my lips done or any cosmetic surgery to my face. With no makeup, I am often asked if I’m sick.”

9. “Once, I went to the office without putting anything on my lips. And I ended up somewhere along the lines of: ’Are you sick? Is there anyone or anything that makes you sad?’ My friends said, ’You look terrible! Go put your lipstick on right away!!!’”

10. "I don’t wear makeup when I go cosmetic shopping (so that I can try products on a clean face). And I hate when sales assistants ask me, “Do you really use these products that you’re buying?’”

11. “When I go out with a naked face, people will ask me if I stayed up all night or if I’m hungover. I also hate the double standard of if you wear makeup, you’re fake and vain, and if you don’t, you must not care about your image.”

12. “I apply makeup when I work promos or work as a bartender and looking attractive is part of the job. My husband and kids say I look funny when I wear makeup. My friends usually say I look nice.”

13. “I don’t notice much of a difference, but I do notice that when I wear makeup, everyone mistakes me for a 20-something-year-old even though I’m 16.”

14. “When I’m wearing a full face of makeup, most women will gravitate toward me and generally trust my opinions on general matters. Men, on the other hand, will definitely stare and don’t see or hear the value in what I’m saying. I feel more heard without cosmetics on.”

15. “I feel perfectly the same. I’d rather say when I am not wearing makeup some people would still come up to me and comment on my makeup. I constantly have to tell people whether or not I am wearing makeup.”

16. “In the right photo, I’m at a college party where most of the guys there claimed it was the first time they’d seen me but the truth is, they have — I just didn’t have makeup on.”

17. “Girls, mostly strangers, treat me differently without makeup. This is quite frustrating because we should be lifting each other up.”

“While shopping and wearing makeup, sale assistants happily approach me, asking me what I like and my size or color preference. But when I’m just wearing my normal face, they don’t even greet me when I enter the shop.”

18. “My husband has always preferred me without makeup. I wear it very rarely but when I do, he doesn’t like it because he says it’s not ’me.’”

19. “I don’t use cosmetics. When my mom starts to tell me, ’Put on some mascara! You look so beautiful with it,’ I feel uncomfortable.”

Bonus: Our staff also shared their opinions...


"I rarely wear any makeup at all because I feel lazy. Of course, there’s a difference between being dolled up and not but it’s not that drastic. Nevertheless, I remember some people not being able to recognize me at first because they were used to seeing me without cosmetics. Usually, the reaction of people to my makeup is either neutral or positive. Funnily enough, people often compliment my brows, which look fine without makeup too. Anyway, I have never heard negative comments a-la ’Why did you paint yourself like a clown?’ or “A girl should be naturally beautiful.”


“I usually hide my tired face behind glasses. I feel more comfortable this way — it seems the dark circles under my eyes are not that noticeable behind the black frames of glasses. I noticed that when I am wearing makeup, women look at me from head to toe in a scornful manner. My husband says, ’It’s because a young mother can’t be so happy and slim like you are — that’s why they’re looking at you.’ When I am made up, I look happy because I finally get a chance to go out.”


“When I am not wearing any makeup, people say I look like a gray mouse and can even rob banks — no one will notice me and won’t be able to describe the robber.”


“Every time I say I’m tired of wearing makeup, my colleagues support me and say I look beautiful without cosmetics. But when after a month, I finally come to the office without makeup, they keep staring at me and say I look funny. The next day I have to apply makeup again and the story repeats itself.”

Do you feel any difference in how people treat you with or without makeup? Show us your photos with and without makeup to get a bunch of compliments and “likes.”

Preview photo credit Charlotte Green / quora