THE MAN WHO WORE MAKEUP: Me My Enemy My Ally

ME

I think it is important that before I really start this column I tell you about me. Let’s face it, if I am going to be telling you about all my insecurities, past traumas and what I have done to overcome them, we really need to be on friendly terms now, don’t we? My name is David. I am 26 years old. I am a born-and-bred Northern fella. I’ve travelled the World, seen the sights and somehow, despite all this, have landed right back where I started. Newcastle-upon-Tyne. My beloved City. I work full-time in Real Estate.

I have recently moved back from London and moved back in with the folks and am now questioning why I ever left to start with! (Why does it take getting to this age to realize that your parents are two of the best friends you will ever have!?!) I am also a dreamer. I blame Disney. If I don’t end up married with two kids in the next couple of years I am 100% sure that I am going to die alone or turn in to Maleficent. I’m sure you will learn a lot about me throughout this blog but I think these are the basics that we can make a start with.

MY ENEMY

My troubles with my skin started when I was about 14 years old. The usual hormones, coupled with the fact that I didn’t really get, or care to understand, the importance of skincare, meant that I suffered from the usual break outs that most teenagers have. I can honestly say that my real issues with my skin didn’t begin until a little later. I was bullied throughout school. My sexuality and my inability to fight back made me an easy target. What you learn when you go through this sort of thing is that your bullies will use any weakness to get to you and my skin was one that was used quite often. It was also the only thing that I felt I could change about myself, so it became the thing that I hated the most.

Since this time, my skin and I have been waging a war against each other that has spanned over a decade and damaged my bank balance more than I would care to admit. You name the product, I’ve used it. Exfoliators. Cleansers. Toners. Moisturisers. Gels. Scrubs. Face masks. Skin treatments. The Works.

It was at the age of 20 that my skin launched a new weapon against me. The “beloved” gift of Cystic Acne.

For those of you not in the know, Cystic Acne is a delightful little form of Acne that begins its life through blocked pores. So it really doesn’t help that my pores look like the are in a constant state of shock. These blocked pores then develop into a Cyst under the skin and are a nightmare to get at. They are then prone to infection, which make then swell up, turn a horrendous purple/red colour and eventually need to be “drained”.

I won’t even begin to horrify you with what needs to be done in this procedure, suffice to say it involves a knife and a syringe. JOYOUS!

Cystic Acne also seems to have the talent of perfect timing. Holidays abroad – it will rears its quite-sizeable head. Sisters wedding – it will be attending as your plus one. Anything that involves pictures being taken – it will be photo bombing that picture. You can also be sure that when it goes it will be leaving a parting gift. Scars and redness are the selfless gifts it has left for me in the past which I still carry around with me to this day.

I have seen Doctors and Dermatologists over the years for these problems and have tried many different tablets, potions and lotions. Some work, most don’t. I have had tablets that have dried my skin out to the point it has been incredibly painful. I’ve woken up during the night with a mouthful of blood because my lips and gums have cracked due to the dryness. Itchiness, hair-loss and depression are also other little side-effects that can be caused by treatment. Never glamorous but worth trying if they work for your skin type!

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It isn’t my place to tell you what you can do to help these problems and that isn’t what i am intending to do here. I just want to let you all know that this is what my skin has put me though on MY journey and this is why I eventually sought out an Ally that could help me feel better about myself again. And that is what I want to talk to you all about…..

MY ALLY

We are all surrounded by cosmetics everyday. We can’t move for advertisements about this AMAZING new Lash-factor mascara or this INCREDIBLE new matte-mousse foundation or this SNAZZ-TASTIC 48 hour lipstick that two wet wipes and some Cillit Bang can’t remove. However, how often do you see any of this aimed at Men? Why is this a market that is still untouched, which almost makes it a forbidden area for most men to tread into? There is a lot of stigma involved in something that is designed to make us feel better about ourselves and give us that little extra boost.

Since a young age, I have been surrounded by women who love make-up and any product associated with it. Over the years I have watched my Mother and Sister open more Smashbox/Laura Geller/Mac boxsets that you could shake a blusher brush at. Even with all this around me I never dared to step into the world of make-up until I reached the bright lights of London at the sprightly young age of 20 years old.

I worked as a flight attendant out of Heathrow at the time. One day a make up artist was invited into Base to show the girls different techniques in wearing and applying make up. I deliberately waited until there was no-one around before approaching the lady for help. I was terrified. What she introduced me to and taught me that day was the beginning of a love affair with make-up that I still nurture 6 and a half years on.

Make up and I have had our ups and downs. From the days that I first started, when I must have looked like I had been dipped in a pot of Dulux one coat Magnolia emulsion, to the days when I first stumbled across bronzer. To this day I am almost 100% sure that I started the Geordie Shore fake tan trend.

Nowadays I am the friend that helps the boys out with putting on their “faces” before a night on the tiles and this is what I want to share with you all.

I am NOT a Make up Artist. I am NOT a beautician. And I am most certainly NOT a dermatologist. I have never claimed to be any of these things. What I want to do with this column is show you what I have learnt. The products I have used and continue to use. I invite you to read, watch, comment, share and hopefully learn from my mistakes and some few of my successes in the hope that you might gain a little of the confidence I have gained.

I intend to write a weekly post and try and answer any questions or action any requests (within reason) that you may have. So get sharing Guys and let’s see where we can take this thing!!

 

by David Mee

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