Makeup Saved My Life

Please don’t judge me for the title of my post, hear me out before you think of me as someone who is “fake” or “self-absorbed.”

In my life, I have always enjoyed wearing makeup. I never thought I did a great job at it, but I admired others who had a true talent for it.

I fell into a severe depression in 2016 where I could barely get out of bed, was self-harming and was suicidal. At this time I was seeing my therapist twice a week and starting my 6-month long journey to finding the right antidepressant for me.

I’m not sure how I stumbled upon the beauty community on YouTube, but once I did, I was completely sucked in. As I watched the makeup tutorial after foundation review after getting ready with me videos, I was able to forget the pain. For the moments I was watching the videos, I wasn’t consumed by suicidal thoughts that plagued me day in and day out.

Watching women like KathleenLights, Tati Westbrook and Emilynoel88 made me feel like they were my friends and that they were helping me through this horrible part of my life. I could count on them to make me feel better when nobody else could.

Eventually, I started buying lots of makeup that they recommended. My makeup collection grew from a small bag of products to a small pond of them. I began practicing their techniques which helped me express myself in a new way. When I was focused on recreating a look, I could go into my zone and be safe.

At the time I was working for a newspaper so I asked if I could have my own makeup column. I wrote Megan Does Makeup for a year and I loved it! I started an Instagram account, @megandoesmakeupxo, to go with it and everything, it was (and still is) great for my mental health to have that creative outlet.

It’s 2018 now, and I have come so far in my mental health journey. Makeup is still an amazing escape for me when I’m feeling depressed or anxious. I am so incredibly thankful that I stumbled upon whatever video first pulled me into the beauty community.

See, I’m not so shallow, am I? 😉

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28 Replies to “Makeup Saved My Life”

    1. Thank you, MoonChild!! 🙂 I have a habit of always feeling like I have to justify my feelings or thoughts. You’re right though, I don’t need to explain myself!

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  1. That is wonderful Megan. Thank you for sharing how this helped you. I find that learning is a good tool for when I am feeling the tug of depression. I love to study languages and follow many language Youtubers in a similar way. )

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    1. Learning is a beautiful thing! I love learning languages too. I’ve been learning Japanese because I wanted something truly challenging. Who are some of the language YouTubers you watch?

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      1. I watch Easy Cantonese, Why Not Spanish and Spanishland School. Japanese is a fun language. I used to be able to say several things, when I lived near a farming community of Japanese immigrants in Colorado. Now I barely remember anything. what Japanese language Youtuber do you follow?

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  2. It’s what ever helps you blossom instead of wilt right! For me I have an outlet through music and writing and I also enjoy trying different makeup tips 🙂 so glad you found something that makes you happy because that is what life is about!

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  3. This is so inspiring! Thank you for sharing, Megan! It’s often the seemingly little things that count the most. And you definitely managed to make the most out of a very difficult situation.
    Funny thing, I had my own YouTube makeup story last winter. Watched videos, bought all sorts of new products to try, enjoyed reinventing myself every morning… and ended up with a severe skin reaction, the effects of which I’m still struggling with till now. So I had to look for another means of self-expression 🙂 Happy it worked for you! And thank you for highlighting the fact that a bit of creativity every day can make a huge difference. Excellent point!

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    1. That’s awful you had such a terrible experience!! I appreciate your words so much. Reading that you felt inspired legit made me happy cry. Thank you!

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  4. It’s crazy to have read this at this time of my own life where YouTube makeup tutorials are helping me to feel a little less lonely having recently gone through some upheavals myself in terms of emigration. Wonderful how taking a moment to share a personal insight can lead others to feel less lonely too – which is essentially what your post has just done. Congratulations on your journey too 🙂

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  5. I love that you were able to find a passion to help you through that rough time. Sometimes that’s what it takes to help us get through the toughest of depressions. What are your favorite eye pallettes? I LOVE the Too Faced BonBon Pallette!

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    1. Absolutely! I’ve heard great things about the Chocolate Bon Bon palette! My favorites are the Tartlette in Bloom and the original Morphe Jaclyn Hill palette. Both are fantastic quality!

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  6. This is wonderful Megan, I am bipolar type 1, OCD, and anxious, and beauty youtube has really helped my mental health too. When I was sicker, I took refuge in lipstick. I wore it religiously every day, all colors, and now have quite the collection!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. This is so beautiful Megan. You’re not shallow at all (a no-make-up person is vouching for it 🙂 ). For my husband, cooking is therapeutic when anxiety shoots up. “Whatever floats your boat” should be the motto in life. Glad you found happiness in your own way.

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    1. Thank you for your kind words, Jheelam! I’m glad your husband has found solace in cooking, I’m sure it’s nice to eat all of the food he makes!

      Liked by 1 person

  8. There’s absolutely nothing shallow about doing something that gives you pleasure and makes you feel good about yourself. Make-up is great for self-expression and self-esteem so why not :O) x

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  9. I, for one, would never think you were self-absorbed or vain. You did what you had to do to save your mental health and it has paid dividends for you. Well done!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. The quickest way to lift my mood is to groom myself; it actually does make a difference..even when I don’t feel like doing my makeup or hair.

    How can you feel good about yourself when you don’t look your best?

    Thanks for your post. I totally agree with it. Makeup is not superficial..

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  11. Isn’t it funny people jump to conclusions. You are doing great and thanks for sharing your journey. I am no good in makeup but lipstick was a must for me. I got married and disconnected from everything I loved makeup and all thinking it’s all shallow but it wasn’t . I suffered from postnatal anxiety and depression twice only second time I realised I need to find myself again and makeup is helping me . It’s good to see your good self in mirror 🤗

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  12. You found a sense of hope with makeup and you should never apologize for that. EVER. I think it’s beautiful! Makeup is incredibly powerful. Also I adore Kathleen Lights and I get what you mean about feeling like they are friends. I get that with the Vlog Squad and Alisha Marie. They are putting their lives out there and you end up bonding with them in a lot of ways.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. I absolutely LOVE this post- because this is very similar to how I feel. Once I started getting absorbed in the YouTube beauty community world (by the way, have you watched RawBeautyKristi or Thataylaa?? If not, do highly recommend), and started playing with my makeup, it definitely helps my mood!! I even created my own separate insta for my makeup looks! Glad you found something that helps you ❤

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