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To think a woman can look professional and presentable at work without make-up?

(264 Posts)
RevoltingPeasant Fri 05-Apr-13 13:39:06

I have been pondering this recently, as a new convert to the Style & Beauty forum.

I go through stages with make-up, where sometimes I can't be bothered for weeks and then I wear the whole shebang every day for ages. I don't think 'looking professional' depends on make-up: I would say neat slacks and blouse with understated jewelry and a generally 'on-task' manner counts as a professional appearance.

But I have noticed quite a lot of people who feel they have to wear make-up for work. Is this so in your workplace? Would you care if you were interviewing for a post and a female candidate was bare-faced? AIBU to think you can look totally professional without paint?

Ducklings45 Fri 05-Apr-13 13:41:20

YANBU! I never wear make up for anything!

HungryClocksGoBackFourSeconds Fri 05-Apr-13 13:42:47

I only bother because i have spots. Otherwise I actually think no make up looks more professional

BettySwollocksandaCrustyRack Fri 05-Apr-13 13:43:47

YANBU - of course she can.

Less is more sometimes.

I always wear make up...not loads....just moisturiser (not make up I know) and if I feel I look a bit pale a small amount of bb and then just eyeline and mascara so my eyes dont look like piss holes in the snow.

It's a matter of opionion but I think if someone didn't employ me on the basis of me not wearing make up then I wouldn't want to work for them anyway.

cakebar Fri 05-Apr-13 13:44:18

YANBU. I didn't often wear make up to work in my twenties (and I think I looked professional), however I think I will wear it every day when I go back shortly, I just can't get away with it anymore.

41notTrendy Fri 05-Apr-13 13:44:40

I would never wear make up because it was expected. However, I feel better some days for wearing mascara and lipstick. I don't think I'd ever judge someone for wearing or not wearing make up. I think an overall impression is more important.

Snowydrift Fri 05-Apr-13 13:45:05

I had an interview the other week and DH told me not to wear any make-up because "no make-up looks better than badly done make-up!". I'm clearly not talented at putting it on, so I hope they didn't think I didn't care enough about the job. I never though of that.

Fairylea Fri 05-Apr-13 13:45:14

Yanbu. But I look absolutely drained and tired without make up so I wouldn't be seen dead without it..but it is a personal choice.

Salmotrutta Fri 05-Apr-13 13:45:30


I only wear a little bit of mascara sometimes but always wear clean, smart clothes and shoes etc.

I think if people are clean, smartly dressed and fresh- looking then that's all they need to be.

FrauMoose Fri 05-Apr-13 13:46:00

I haven't done a lot of interviewing but when I have done it's all been related to how well they have answered the questions, and how that compares to other candidates.

One does register smiles, eye contact, handshake etc. I suppose I would notice if anyone was wearing something that I regarded as inappropriate - very low neck, ultra-short skirt, eye-wateringly strong perfume. Wouldn't notice make-up I suspect - other than if someone had applied it with a trowel, I might wonder if that implied a lack of confidence.

Theicingontop Fri 05-Apr-13 13:46:45

Mascara and a fine layer of foundation is all I bothered with. Anything more than that and people would do a double take, "Are you off out after work...?"

MisterUdagawa Fri 05-Apr-13 13:47:17

I think you look better with make up on unless you are a real beauty or get enough sleep

gallifrey Fri 05-Apr-13 13:48:43

I'm at the age now where I feel I have to wear make up every day. I look washed out without any on and a few times I haven't worn any loads of people asked me if I was ill!

HollyBerryBush Fri 05-Apr-13 13:48:45

you won't notice make up on a well groomed woman.

DrSeuss Fri 05-Apr-13 13:48:49

I wear mineral foundation at work, nothing else on my face, only because of my rosacea. If it weren't for that I wouldn't bother.

freddiefrog Fri 05-Apr-13 13:50:34


I'm not really involved with employing staff these days, but when I did, whether or not they wore make up wasn't on the list of things I was looking for

Snoopingforsoup Fri 05-Apr-13 13:51:03

It depends how much time I've had before leaving the house as to whether I've got it on.
Smart clothes, tidy hair, moisturiser and a nice perfume is sufficient to my mind.
I do love looking at the ladies who turn up to work in mini skirts and low cut spaghetti tops who are clarted in make up and fake tan (no, I don't work in a TOWIE bar). They think I look like shit and I think they look ridiculous. Takes all sorts to build a work force and run an organisation.

Ruprekt Fri 05-Apr-13 13:52:39

YABU to use the word 'slacks'. smile

Personally I have to wear makeup due to roseacea but do not judge people who do not wear it.

OutragedFromLeeds Fri 05-Apr-13 13:54:42

I never wear any make-up, ever. I'm a nanny though, so not really required to look 'smart'. The DC's don't seem to mind the lack of make-up. I hope YANBU, but I don't know enough about that sort of workplace to know.

JollyPurpleGiant Fri 05-Apr-13 13:57:13

I never wear make up. Not even for my wedding. And I am expected to look presentable to the public. Nobody has ever complained.

HorraceTheOtter Fri 05-Apr-13 14:01:36

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

HollyBerryBush Fri 05-Apr-13 14:04:05

Can I just say, I think it's interesting that most of you are making excuses for wearing make up - no one will step out and say they actually enjoy wearing it. I do, I don't slaver it on, you wouldn't know I was wearing it, but it is part of good grooming, just the same as doing your hair or making sure your shoes are clean.

RevoltingPeasant Fri 05-Apr-13 14:04:12

cakebar that is interesting - what do you mean by 'can't get away with it'? Genuinely want to know!

holly do you mean that a 'well-groomed woman' applies such subtle make up that you can't see it or that it just sort of blends into her overall self-presentation and doesn't stand out?

Ruprekt - slacks trousers - fixed it!!

5eggstremelychocaletymadeggs Fri 05-Apr-13 14:05:47

Yanbu I rarely wear make up, if I do its just mascara, eye shadow and lip gloss and you don't have to wear make up to look we groomed.

RevoltingPeasant Fri 05-Apr-13 14:05:49

Ah see, I disagree, Holly. I think wearing neat professional clothing, well-brushed hair, and generally appearing fresh is fine.

I do enjoy wearing make-up, which is why I do it, but I also think it's 100% fine for me to turn up to a big meeting at work with nothing on my face.

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