As I sit here browsing my Instagram feed, I can’t help but wonder – what happened to celebrating our natural unique beauty? Why are women insistent on morphing their faces into unnatural looking clones of each other? As you can probably tell, today’s post is a bit of a rant. Look away if you are in love with over contoured theatrical-reminiscent makeup.

Heavily contoured looks can be amazing in photos with the right lighting, the right angle and the right photographer. They can be amazing on stage, helping to accentuate the performer’s facial expressions and moods for the audience. They can be amazing on Instagram with a ton of filters applied. In real life heavily contoured faces look weird.

Sure, from the front you may look like you have chiseled cheek bones and a narrow nose but turn your head to the side and you look like you’ve got stripes of dirt on your face. It’s not pretty.

Look, I know we all have things that we don’t like about ourselves. We all wish our nose was slimmer, our cheekbones higher, our chin was more prominent (or less prominent), our forehead smaller, our eyes farther apart, and on and on. It seems to be the curse of women to never realize that we are our most beautiful when we are comfortable in our own skin. Covering up ourselves in a pound of makeup trying to make our unique features fit the current hot trend is not beautiful. It doesn’t celebrate the uniqueness that makes us special and it doesn’t let our natural beauty shine through.

As a makeup artist I am continuously frustrated by women asking for a “natural look” and then pulling out photos of various heavily contoured, overly made up and filtered women. None of them look natural and all of them look the same. Why did we stop appreciating what makes us special and start wanting to all be the same?

As a makeup artist I consider it my job to bring out those features that make you feel beautiful. Your amazing eye color, your wonderful lip shape, your gorgeous lashes, your amazing skin, etc.… It’s unique to you and makes you special. Not all hot trends are appropriate for every face. And trying to fit a look that doesn’t work on your particular features is going to look downright ugly. You will look amazing with a look that suits your features and you will still look like you.

Contouring and highlighting does have a place in beauty makeup. But it should be used subtly to enhance your features, not to morph you into a different person entirely. Good contouring does not look like a strip on your face. In fact, when done correctly, you shouldn’t see the contouring at all. You should just look naturally pretty. It’s subtle and you don’t need a kitchen utensil to achieve it.

So I plead with you – bring back natural beauty. Everyone should not look the same. We should not be morphing our faces into unnatural shapes. Celebrate your unique features and enhance your assets. You will be far more beautiful being you than trying to fit into some misguided ideal that has been filtered to death on Instagram.