Sounding Off About Women Wearing Makeup to the Gym

I got thinking about women wearing makeup to the gym after I stumbled across this on Facebook {well, I only started thinking AFTER I had a chuckle because I DO love Gene Wilder as Willy Wonka and I could totally hear him saying this in my head….but, I digress}

What I started thinking is…….{yup, buckle up for some inner monologue} “WHAT is the big deal?  Why is it that people{mostly other women, BTW}  just cannot get over the fact that some women wear makeup to the gym? What is it THAT???” {also, I should warn you that this is not a post that contains any enlightenment or answers to these questions, just my musings and wonderment at WHY it’s such a big deal}

This was on a Tumblr with the heading: “When I see a Girl at the Gym with a Pound of Makeup On”

I really just don’t get it.  If a girl needs the extra confidence of wearing her makeup to the gym, and it doesn’t preclude her from getting a workout in, then WHY do other women feel they NEED to have an opinion? Personally, I have working out to do when I’m at the gym. My focus isn’t on whether the girls are wearing makeup or not.  In fact, I am always glad to see other women in the gym at all { makeup or not} and am sure to try to make eye contact and  smile.

I feel like we girls need to stick together. In a society where we are absolutely bombarded with images of women that set unrealistic standards for those of us in the general public, we have to realize that we ALL have our insecurities.  We may all have different insecurities, but we all have them.  I just think  that if  a girl needs the confidence that makeup lends to walk through those gym doors, then yay. She’s there. She has already done more than a lot of Americans by just getting herself through those gym doors. Who CARES if she looks like the Estee Lauder poster girl??

Do I wear makeup to the gym? You better believe I do. *GASP*  I wear eye makeup. I never really like to go anywhere without eye makeup. At 37, I feel like I look like the walking dead without it.  Wearing makeup doesn’t in any way keep me from working out hard. I think it does just the opposite.  If I walk into the gym feeling pulled together, then I’m more likely to be less bothered when what I like to call “the drowned rat effect” starts to take place 20 minutes into my workout.  I work very hard.  By the time I leave the gym, there really isn’t a dry part of me, my hair is wet, matted and/or askew, and my face is usually beet red……..but at least I don’t look like the walking dead. 😀

There you have it, just me and my thoughts.  I still don’t get it.  I don’t get why we women can’t just support each other. We’re all in the same boat.  We all have struggles and insecurities. I have been thinking about this makeup at the gym thing for days {yup, these are sometimes the things that get stuck in my brain} and I just cannot come up with an understanding of WHY people are so bothered by the fact that some of us ladies feel better wearing makeup to the gym.

I would really love to hear your thoughts on this. Think I’m right? Or, if you have a strong opinion about women in makeup at the gym, PLEASE…..maybe you can enlighten me. 🙂

XO, Sara

P.S. There’s a Gnarly Whale giveaway coming your way tomorrow!

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  1. Uh, I thought you were 38…..? 😉

    It’s insecurity, immaturity, and jealousy all wrapped up in gossipy-ness.

  2. I go to an all women’s gym that has a wide range of clientele– from skinny little things in full hair/makeup, to old ladies in Snoopy PJ pants, to Muslim women in varying degrees of Islamic dress, to Orthodox Jewish women with covered hair and skirts over their workout pants. People watching at my gym has become a little sport of mine– with it being just ladies, most people have their guard down a bit and dress more for the work out than for show. Basically, they wear what makes them feel good/comfortable. I wear makeup to the gym because I’m usually coming straight from work, and you best believe I wear makeup to work. I’ve become a little fascinated with what people wear to workout and I agree with you– WHO CARES. If some lady is comfortable in a slathering of makeup, I don’t care. (assuming she wipes down the machine when she is done….eeewwww….sweaty makeup machine….) I think it took being in the all women setting for me to get to this less judgey place, though. Maybe because I don’t feel like I’m competing with anyone there?

  3. Well seeing as the last time I was in a gym was back in college and it was the gym on campus, you gotta bet nearly every girl in there was in make-up. But they were the Polly Dolly’s so it was to be expected. Frankly I don’t dare leave my bedroom to concur the world without at minimum some mascara, eye shadow and BB cream. I know I’d be a girl is some form of make up if I went to the gym, obviously not there to catch a man but like you said the walking dead look just isn’t for me.
    I am also the weirdo who will invest in good water-proof makeup for the times I do go to the pool. 😀

  4. I’ve seen similar posts floating around, and I’m like you…I just wonder why the hell anyone cares?! I don’t care what you look like, as long as I’m not looking at your butt crack (which does happen…and that’s just distracting)

    If I work out in the morning before I’ve gotten ready for the day, I don’t usually have any makeup on, but if I come after work then DUH I’ve got makeup on. I’m not going to wash my face BEFORE I work out. Also, if I run a race, I put a little on because I know there will be pictures. People need to consider that they don’t know another person’s situation before they start judging them.

  5. Rachelle S. says:

    Thanks for a great blog entry! Good things to think about….

  6. amybelle2001 says:

    Amen! Who really cares? As long as you’re there working out and you’re not wearing something that’s going to make me look twice (too short or too tight or just plain weird will make me look twice–also, really, the men at my gym wear MUCH more interesting things than the women), I don’t pay attention BECAUSE I’M BUSY WORKING OUT!!! It’s just insecure women who feel the need to criticize others to make themselves feel better. And I agree with other posters–If I workout after work, you’d better believe I have makeup on. And I run til I’m really good and sweaty. Do I care how I look? Nope.

  7. Amen Sister! I love that you wrote this, because I’m with you – I’d rather get along with each other than tear each other down. I’ve only recently begun wearing makeup regularly, and I can’t describe how much better I feel when I step out into the world put-together and polished. The confidence boost is uncanny – I feel like a new woman! So wear your makeup to the gym, put yourself together, polish yourself wherever you are, whoever you are. And let the judgers judge, because you look awesome.

  8. I don’t wear make-up when I work out, but 1) I don’t go to a gym, I work out at home and 2) it’s usually RIGHT after I drop the kids off at school, and I don’t glam up to do that. If I did go to a gym? Who CARES what other people are doing?! I’m there for ME, not them, and I’m gonna be hot and sweaty, and let’s face it, not cute when I’m done.

  9. I think it’s kind of a silly thing to judge people about. Some people feel insecure about going anywhere without makeup. Some people are working out after work so they were already wearing makeup and they didn’t feel the need to take it off. It doesn’t really matter.

    That said, I do find myself having some bewilderment about how other women can do it because I personally can’t work out with makeup on. If I’m wearing makeup, I will actually use it as an excuse NOT to work out…. All I can imagine is getting all sweaty and then having eye makeup run into my eye and then I’ll start screaming, “OH MY GOD! OH MY GOD! GIVE ME A TOWEL! MY EYE IS ON FIRE! MY EYE IS ON FIRE!” and having a panic attack like I’m a crazy lady because my eye is stinging and the whole scene would be really super embarrassing, and in general I try to avoid doing embarrassing things in public.

    But I figure, to each their own… If you’re confidant that you’re not going to get an eye full of makeup and have a loud outburst about it, more power to you.

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