Cecilia's Blog

25 March 2014

My thoughts on the #nomakeupselfie phenomenon

Filed under: current affairs — Cecilia @ 20:05
Tags: , , ,

The road to hell is paved with good intentions, and I feel that this saying applies to the #nomakeupselfie trend that seems to have flooded social networks lately. The original idea behind the trend, I am led to believe, was good and honourable. It is always good to support a charitable cause, and what is more honourable than supporting cancer research? However, I am disappointed to see that the original idea has morphed into just another narcissistic trend and that the masses have all jumped onto this bandwagon without stopping to ask themselves what the real point of this whole exercise is.

It irks me that it took the vain act of a selfie to raise money. It is supposed to be a makeup-free selfie, but based on some of the photos I have seen it seems to me that mascara and eyeliner does not count as makeup. In some cases it looks like lipgloss also isn’t regarded as makeup, but maybe the girls just licked their lips to get that glossy sheen. (What do I know anyway.)

I’m digressing.

The point is — what about the many who annually contribute to charities quietly out of their own accord? Suddenly, unless you post a #nomakeupselfie and put it out there for all to see, proudly proclaiming that this is for “a good cause”, your donations or time volunteered to charities just doesn’t count and is nonchalantly ignored by society. (Not the charities. I am sure they are eternally grateful to those who have regular debit orders going off.)

Is that what we have become? Really?! Does it take something this shallow — SELFIES, for goodness’ sake! —  to raise money?

In the end, I suppose, if it raises funds and helps cash-strapped charities, then it’s all good. That is, after all, the ultimate objective. But I am just really disappointed in my fellow human being to discover that it takes something like a virus of #nomakeupselfies to raise funds.

That reminds me. Girls — you’re supposed to donate money to a charity when you post your #nomakeupselfie. Unless you’re a celebrity, it is highly unlikely that your random picture of yourself on the internet will raise money for anyone.

P.S. Of course I’m generalising. There are some girls out there who have put their faces sans any trace of makeup on social media and have attached their proofs of payment to a charity. Good on you! But you should still be contributing to charities anyway… and not make this a once-off thing that is coupled with a selfie.



  1. You have made some really good points here and when I first heard about the trend I was inclined to agree. Granted there are girls who are posing pretty using this as another self promotion opportunity but I have seen a lot of the opposite.
    Us Irish have never taking ourselves too seriously and it something that’s become more obvious from the ‘cellotape’ selfies and the boys #makeupselfies.
    It’s a very unusual way of raising money and also very telling of the society we live in but if a charity can benefit from a shallow trend like this I’ll take that over a #necknomination any day.
    I don’t know about the rest of the world but Ireland has raised €1 million for cancer research from this alone. Out of a population of 4 million that’s something to be very proud of.
    Ps I have been nominated by a friend and had considered not doing it. But considering nothing else I do today will raise money for a good cause why not take part?

    Comment by Lisa Sherin — 25 March 2014 @ 22:00 | Reply

    • Hi Lisa, and thanks for taking the time to read my rant. I’m glad to hear that Ireland are not taking this very seriously and that they have raised so much money. That’s brilliant! Unfortunately, judging by my (South African) Facebook feed, it looks like the majority of the girls have taken this very seriously and are trying their best to look as beautiful as ever, thereby soliciting comments like “Oh, you’re such a natural beauty!”. That makes me sad. As for being nominated… it’s totally up to you whether you want to post a selfie or not, but I highly recommend you donate to a good cause anyway!

      Comment by Cecilia — 26 March 2014 @ 09:12 | Reply

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