Beauty trends can be exciting and inspiring, but it’s important to consider whether they are right for you. Some trends may be dangerous or unsustainable, while others may not suit your individual style or skin type. It’s best to research beauty trends before trying them out and to consult a professional if necessary.

We all know how bad it is that the media creates unrealistic expectations for people. That’s a given. While many fashion companies are getting better, saying that they’re nixing retouching from their campaigns and hiring “plus-size” models to be the faces of their companies, the media in the world of beauty seems to be at a standstill.

When was the last time that you saw a girl with a couple sunspots, maybe a little bit of redness, or a pimple or two on her face in a magazine or on a billboard?

Chances are, you never have. It’s completely understandable that if a brand is selling foundation to help you achieve near-perfect skin, they wouldn’t want to have any imperfections on the faces of their models. At the same time, they need to be a bit more realistic.

Newsflash, beauty companies: People have pores. They have peach fuzz, and they have texture on their skin. No one’s skin, no matter how beautiful, is perfect, but that’s exactly what we’re seeing in beauty campaigns.

Let’s back it up a bit—back to a time when Kim Kardashian was the only one who contoured. What really got me thinking about this was an encounter that I had while working at Sephora.

It all started when Anastasia Beverly Hills released her Contour Kit. As soon as it sold out on Sephora shelves everywhere, other beauty companies started to see how mad people got over this whole “contouring and highlighting” thing that no one really knew how to achieve. Every brand had a contour kit for sale within a few weeks.

Then, all the big beauty brands started to jump on the bandwagon. Sephora recognized the opportunity and transformed their stores into the new epicenters of this insane new legit trend. Over. Within a week, every single client that walked in the door wanted to know how to contour.

I loved teaching people how to change their face shape and create illusions that made their faces look “better” (at least in their minds). Everyone loved the way their faces looked with a little contouring and highlighting, but one girl walked in and changed my entire opinion on the trend.

She was gorgeous and had the most beautiful, pronounced cheekbones I had ever seen. Of course, she sat down in my chair and asked me to teach her how to contour.

I honestly didn’t even know how to contour to achieve what she wanted because it looked like she had already contoured her cheekbones to perfection.

Long story short, I explained to her that she was literally the poster child for contouring. Of course, this didn’t satisfy her because she wanted to be on trend and add contouring to her routine.

After this moment, I really started to take a different perspective on beauty trends. It made me realize that many people don’t necessarily want to do something because it’s good for them, but they want to take part in the trends so they can feel more like the girls in the campaigns.

It’s hard for women to accept themselves as beautiful in their own ways, but in reality, we all should. This is not to say that I have completely overcome it.

For example, after contouring had its big moment, all of a sudden, we started to see “strobing” all over Instagram and YouTube, demonstrated by our favorite bloggers. As someone with oily skin, I hate the look of shine on my face.

I like my skin to look as matte as possible, because, in my opinion, that’s when it looks its best. As soon as strobing came out, I found myself grabbing for my shimmery highlighters and “strobing” my entire face. I’d leave the house with a glistening face, which is the polar opposite of how I prefer to see my skin.

While it felt great to be up on the trend and all, I found myself trying to blot away the shine all day, not even realizing that I was the one who put it there. Purposely. It just seems so backwards, but because everyone else was doing it, I also felt the pressure to hop on the bandwagon—especially being a beauty writer.

Of course, brands and influencers create trends for just that reason: for them to be trends. They’re supposed to be something that everyone wants to try.

But I invite you to try this: Take a moment to reflect the next time you’re debating wearing a trendy beauty technique that you know isn’t right for you. Is this trend keeping me from my true self?

Also, remember that the girls you see in the campaigns aren’t perfect. The graphic designers have photoshopped them to perfection, but that’s not their true selves (pun intended).

You should never feel like you’re flawed because you get a pimple or two, or even if you have a full face of them (I can tell you all about how that feels).

While it may seem like the hardest thing in the world, you can’t compare yourself to the people in these campaigns. People are real. Photoshop is not.

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