And Then I Fell Out the Window

Life, examined and punted around

Gender Styles: A Paradox and A Revelation

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Yeah, I know, stuffy title. If you’ve been following this blog, you know that a few months ago I shaved my head.

DSC_0243 Here’s what I looked like not too long before I shaved my head. My hair wasn’t really anything spectacular; it was a boring shade between blonde and brown, it was thin, it was limp, and I never knew what the hell to do with it. Everyone told me not to shave my head, saying it would look terrible, but I was at the point where I didn’t even care if I looked ugly; I just didn’t want to deal with my hair anymore. It felt like an enemy, not a part of me.






Photo 13I was completely shocked how much more feminine I looked with no hair! Something about having all that hair away from my face brought out my feminine features and the shape of my head. I was completely in love with it and felt more beautiful than I had in a long time.DSC_1315




So if shaving my head (doing something known as very un-feminine) made me feel more womanly than ever, what would happen if I did the opposite? In other words, what would happen if I did something very feminine to my face? One night, while bored and with a pile of makeup supplies on hand, I slathered enough makeup to kill a horse on my face to find out.


DSC_1323With a metric ton of foundation, eyeshadow, eye liner, brow liner, mascara, lipstick and blush on, I ended up looking like Brian Viglione from the Dresden Dolls  (see below)url




In other words, I looked like a man in a bunch of makeup. For whatever reason, putting on a ton of makeup intended to exaggerate feminine features only served to make my jaw look more angular, my short hair more jarring, my cheekbones higher (and not in a fabulous feminine Beyonce kind of way). I’m not saying that if every woman puts on a lot of makeup that she looks like a man, or that women with shaved heads look more feminine. What I am saying, and realizing, is that looks that we categorize as being strictly for making people look more or less feminine or masculine don’t always work that way. How cool is that? I’m also not saying that a person should necessarily strive to look more or less feminine. If a person finds a look that they like, that makes them stand proud and say, “Oh hey…this is me“, then what does it matter?

Gender bending for the win, y'all.

Gender bending for the win, y’all.



One thought on “Gender Styles: A Paradox and A Revelation

  1. I love moments like these! When you realize that the things you think about gender are just conditioning — that a shaved head doesn’t make you any less of a woman, despite everyone telling you the opposite.

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