Maybe you spent too much time reading as a kid—cause you never really had the chance to learn, “What exactly is makeup?” Since everyone else has been aware of what makeup is for years now, it can be hard to broach the subject with your friends without seeming like a big ol’ dum-dum. Try these casual questions to figure out, “Hey, what’s this makeup thing all about?”
“Um, how you foundation?”
Foundation is a thing makeup people do. In fact, it would seem that it’s literally the foundation of makeup. So how do they put it on? Find out what’s going on by pulling your friend aside quietly when you’re hanging out to ask, “So, you brush that stuff on or finger it or what?” Try to nod like you understand but also ask leading questions and quickly write answers in the notes app in your phone after so you can reference it later when you go to the makeup store. That is where you go to buy makeup, right?
“What goes under the makeup?”
It seems like people are doing things even before the makeup to make the skin good. So ask your coworker how her eyes aren’t dry like yours. Is she lotioning or is it a face mask like you saw in Mrs. Doubtfire? Try to find out if this is a thing she can do herself or if some expert person do it for her. Get product names. Act very chill by responding to all her suggestions by saying, “Duh!”
“How do you get your eyes like that?”
There seem to be a lot of ways to make your eyes better. Mascara, yes–you’ve definitely seen that one. But people also have other sticks in their bag and you’re not 100% sure what they do. Watch your friend use a stick in the bathroom mirror and say “Oh, who make that?” like you know what it is. Then read the label and Google later and try to fill in all the blanks. Why do some eyes look dead tired and other eyes look pretty? Soon you’ll find out the secret.
“Soo….add color to face?”
Sometimes faces get more bright with makeup. People put color on their lips and cheeks, and….? Fuck, you shoulda started asking about this years ago. This is embarrassing. Anyway, when you see a woman friend with a face that look so good, point at a face part and say, “What are you using there? A product?” Hopefully she’ll remember the color name or something about it and you can be like “Mhmm. Yes, I like that too. Can I have some?” And then you’ll have makeup in no time.
With enough gentle prodding, before you know it you’ll start to know what makeup is and how it works. Just keep asking questions. But don’t ask them in too much of a dumb way or people will realize just how lost you are and laugh and laugh. You’re gonna get this. Hopefully.