So, would you dare to go bare-faced like Susanna?
TV presenter Susanna Reid caused a stir when she posted a 'barefaced' picture. Stephanie Bell asks four women if they would be brave enough to do the same
Celebrities rarely appear in public looking anything less than glamorous which is why Good Morning Britain star Susanna Reid caused such a stir recently when she posted a picture of herself on social media with no make-up on.
The presenter was applauded by fans and colleagues as being inspiring and brave when she wished everyone a happy New Year on Instagram with a barefaced selfie.
The 46-year-old posted before and after photos - one with make-up and one without along with the message: "Me on Instagram = extra eyelashes, make-up & filters. Me in Real life = blemishes, lines & flaws."
She was inundated with positive messages and her Good Morning Britain co-star Piers Morgan applauded her courage.
"It was a very brave thing to do because women in the public eye don't tend to put themselves out there au naturel," he said.
While most women wouldn't leave the house without their make-up armoury in place, more and more seem to be opting for the natural look.
We talked to three women for whom make-up is an everyday essential and one former model who prefers barefaced chic.
'I'd feel naked without my make-up'
Glamorous great grandmother Valerie Kirkpatrick (70) grew up watching her beautiful mother keeping one step ahead of the fashion trends. For Valerie, who works in the model industry in the accountancy department of the Alison Campbell Agency, looking her best is always a priority. Valerie lives in Lisburn and has three daughters, two granddaughters and two great granddaughters. She says:
I grew up with a very glamorous mum. She was really into film stars and called me and my two sisters after her favourite film stars.
My mum would have had the latest clothes, perfumes and make-up even before they were available here.
She bought all the latest fashion magazines and I remember my uncle owned a chemist shop and she would send me up with a cutting from Vogue or Cosmopolitan of the latest wonder cream or perfume to ask him to order it in for her.
I loved to watch her getting ready to go out.
She always wore stockings with seams up the back and would wear gloves to put them on so she wouldn't get a ladder in them.
She always looked a million dollars and daddy was so proud of her.
We just followed what she did.
I do take my make-up off every night and put moisturiser and toner on although I don't overly stress about it.
I couldn't leave the house without my make-up on or I would feel naked, it would just feel so weird, like going out with no clothes on.
Make-up gives me confidence. I don't put it on for other people, it's for myself to make me feel better.
I always wear a primer and then I use Clinique foundation or a Max Factor pan stick.
I have used a pan stick for years and I have two different colours, a light one and a darker one which I use to shade.
It is thick make-up but I don't put a lot of it on.
I do my eyes and I always put eyeliner on and also do my brows. I usually go for a light grey eyeshadow or a light plum. A friend bought me an Urban Decay eyeshadow kit with about 20 different colours and I love that.
Eyeshadow gives your eyes that wee bit of definition. I then put a dark brown or black pencil along the top of my lid and I finish my make-up with a bit of coral lipstick and a lip liner which just helps me to define my lips.
I have good eyebrows but they are blonde and you can't really see them so I always put pencil on them as well.
I don't spend a lot of money on make-up. I get a lot of it bought for me for presents and it tends to last a long time.
I think Susanna Reid is stunning and without make-up would look great. It was brave of her to post a picture of herself without make-up, but I don't know if I'd want to do it though."
'I cleanse and moisturise every morning'
Working in the model industry, Tracey Rodgers says she has always felt pressure to look good. Tracey (50) owns the Belfast-based Style Academy model agency and lives in the city with her husband Stefan and pet rottweiler pup, Frankie. She says:
Yoou do feel a certain amount of pressure to look good when you work in this industry. When you are surrounded by models who are all looking fabulous, you are constantly comparing yourself.
I wouldn’t go to work or an event without my make-up on and I don’t feel half as confident if I am bare-faced.
I’ve loved make-up since I was a teenager. I’ve also done a lot of peoples’ make-up and taught make-up, and picked up a lot of tips over the years.
I do cleanse, tone and moisturise every morning and I cleanse and tone at night, although sometimes I’m a bit lazy about putting moisturiser on at night.
I wear foundation and a concealer base and would set that with a loose powder. I then pencil my eyebrows. Eyebrows have become so important over the past five years and young people all know how to do the HD Brows because they watch tutorials on the internet.
I also wear a powder blusher and put a cream blusher over that and then eyeshadow, eye liner, mascara and lipstick. It probably takes me 20 minutes in the morning to do my make-up. I have always worn brown eyeshadow and I use a liquid eyeliner on the top lid and on the bottom which I also blend with brown eyeshadow as it never stays on and the eye shadow helps to stop it running.
I love Lime Crime lipstick as it goes on like a gloss and then sets as a matt and stays on all day. You can eat and drink and it is still there. I don’t do dark lipstick. I once wore a burgundy stay-on matt lipstick to an event and it was horrific. I couldn’t get it off and spent the whole night feeling so self-conscious I talked with my hand over my mouth.
Lately I have started to go to church with no make-up on and also walk the dog without make-up though I do make a point of wearing shades. I don’t know why I feel comfortable going to church with no make-up on, I suppose I feel it is very different to my other world and no one is paying any attention to me.
Mind you, I nearly died one Sunday when the minister decided to take pictures and put them up on Facebook. I suppose when I don’t have make-up on I don’t feel half as confident.
Susanna Reid was brave to put a picture of herself online, I certainly wouldn’t have done it.”
'Mascara and lipstick are two things I couldn't do without'
Ulster Unionist MLA Jo-Anne Dobson (50), from Waringstown, is known for adding a touch of glamour to the halls of Stormont. Jo-Anne is married to John (53), a farmer, and has two sons Mark (23) and Elliott (25). She says:
For me personally it’s important to have a well-groomed public image which is why make-up is important to the job I do. I always wear make-up during my Stormont and constituency days and at the numerous fundraising events I attend.
My make-up is as important to me and the clothes I wear for work.
For me, make-up is a staple. I like to feel that I look presentable when meeting with my constituents or chairing the cancer and disability all-party groups, health committee or when in the chamber.
It’s all part of business dressing. I think people would wonder if I turned up make-up free. I would feel I look less professional.
On the flip side of this, I love make-up free days, but usually in front of the cattle on our farm and my husband. I would rarely wear no make-up in public apart from on holiday. I especially love Sundays which is my make-up free day.
My husband says I look much fresher faced and younger make-up free, but I think he is just being nice.
I have to admit if I go for a walk on a Sunday I do pull on a hat and hope nobody sees me, yet there is a great feeling of freedom having no make-up on.
If I go out, the two things I couldn’t do without are lipstick and mascara.
I don’t tend to spend a lot on make-up. I buy my moisturiser, mascara and blusher in the supermarket during my Monday night grocery dash in Sainsbury’s before it closes on my way home from Stormont.
There are a few which suit me which I don’t deviate from. I have used Nivea cream to remove my make-up since I was a teenager. It’s so cheap but so good. I tend to use Estee Lauder Night Repair as I never get enough sleep.
I also use whatever cream I have bought at the supermarket but the Estee Lauder is non-negotiable.
Susanna Reid was very brave to do what she did. She looks fantastic with or without make-up and well done to her.
I remember doing a make-up free challenge for charity on Facebook a while back, although going without make-up at Stormont might not be on the cards yet.”
'I want to show my children what's inside matters most'
Author and former model Rebecca Reid (33), from Bangor, is a mum of three young girls, Molly (9), Matilda (6) and Cherry (3). Rebecca says she prefers not to wear make-up and at the very most will put on a little lip-gloss and a dash of eye liner.
She says: I’ve never liked putting anything on my skin and I just never saw why I should put something on my face to make me look different. I worked for some time as a model and did have the full make-up put on professionally but I always took it straight off again.
I might put on a bit of lip gloss and eyeliner sometimes but I never put anything on my skin. I never saw the point and still don’t.
As the mother of girls in a time when everything is so self-image obsessed, it is really important to me to project a healthy image of self to my children and show them that what matters is what is inside and not what wearing a lot of makeup implies.
There is no doubt that it does make a lot of people, including me, look a heck of a lot better but for me it is a personal choice and I think it is important for my daughters to see I can do that. I don’t want them to think you need to be made up to look good.
I wouldn’t knock anyone for wearing make-up — most of my friends and the girls I know do wear it. It’s just that I would prefer not to.
I do think that Susanna Reid was extremely brave to post a selfie with no make-up and she should be respected for it.
If other celebrities would do it and say ‘this is who I am’, it might have a positive impact on women, particularly younger women.
Younger women and teenagers seem to be wearing a lot more make-up these days.”