One of my working mom life hacks is keeping my makeup bag in the car. I put on mascara and lipstick in the parking lot. A swipe or three of under eye concealer before walking into the office trying to convince everyone else that I went to bed on time or slept through the night. Putting on makeup in a real mirror? Ain’t nobody got time for that.
But yesterday I forgot my trusty face bag on the counter. A fact I realized about 10 minutes into my 90- minute drive. As I ran through the events that I had lined up for the day, I realized there were meetings and a presentation and I was expected to look halfway human for both.
I was running too late to duck into a CVS. There was no room on the schedule for a quick makeup run at lunch. And a futile dig under the car seat reminded me that we cleaned out the car yesterday, for the first time in many, many moons. See… this is why we don’t clean.
So I realized there was nothing I could do about this. I would be without my little bag of “look wide awake” for the day at work, and that was that. This is my face. That will have to be fine.
And the more I settled into the day, the more I realized that YUP, this is my face. That’s more than fine actually.
Mascara might make me look more awake in a meeting, but my ideas will make me sound awake. Lipstick might give me a swipe of confidence heading into a presentation, but my words will make me sound confident. Under-eye concealer might hide the fact that I was up three times last night, but would it really? And do I need to hide that?
When you work outside the home as a mom there are a certain set of expectations. Pressure, pushing down on you. But some of that pressure, some of those expectations are self-induced. No one cared yesterday that I wasn’t wearing makeup. If they did they didn’t tell me. Because that would have been super weird! I got my work done, I did it well, and then I had less makeup to remove when I was putting the kids to bed last night.
So am I wearing makeup today? Well… yes, I am. Because I do like how a little mascara looks, and how a little lipstick feels. But I’m also fine with this being my face. With or without the makeup. It’s the face of a working mom doing the best damn job she knows how to do.
And she’s looking pretty good.
This story originally appeared on With Love, Becca