The other day I found myself watching a makeup tutorial. And let me tell you, this was nothing at all like the horrifically amateur tutorial I posted a year ago, where half of my explanations involved phrases like, “Just mash it into your face” and “you have to blend, I hear…” and “draw heinous circles, like, legit stripes ..then rub it in until you look less crazy.”
No, this tutorial was snapchatted by none other than Kylie Jenner, sister to the fabled Kardashian women and known for her super-big lips.
I have no explanation for how I came to be watching this video. I don’t follow any of the Kardashians (or Jenners for that matter) although I am definitely aware of them in the periphery sense that most of us in our celeb-obsessed culture are. I don’t share the disdain for them that many feel; the whole family evokes a pretty neutral response from me.
Nor am I particularly interested in makeup- doing it, acquiring it, experimenting with it etc. It’s as much a part of my life as getting dressed is – I take care in the process, I try to put enough effort in that it ends up working for me, I use it to accentuate the positive and diminish the negative, but it’s an aspect of my life that takes about five minutes a day and requires minimal cost and attention.
But this is different. This isn’t just makeup, it’s art. Jenner has perfected her skills and utilises her tools and materials to the point where she artfully constructs her face basically from scratch each and every day. She draws and conceals and contours and highlights, and in doing so, dictates what you see. What you perceive. It’s kind of fascinating. Just watch it.