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Trojan Tribune

The student news site of Alisal High School

Trojan Tribune

The student news site of Alisal High School

Trojan Tribune

Yes I wear makeup, and?

For+casual+days+I+do+just+mascara+and+lip+gloss.+For+mascara+I+typically+keep+it+consistent+by+using+the+Maybelline+Sky+High+in+Black+and+pair+it+with+a+lip+gloss.+The+product+usually+depends+on+my+mood.+I+tend+to+buy+many+lip+glosses%2C+some+may+say+too+much+%28like+over+50%2B%29%2C+but+I+usually+stick+with+either+e.l.f.+glowy+balm+in+grape+or+NYX+Fat+Oil+in+Newsfeed.+
Alex Ledesma
For casual days I do just mascara and lip gloss. For mascara I typically keep it consistent by using the Maybelline Sky High in Black and pair it with a lip gloss. The product usually depends on my mood. I tend to buy many lip glosses, some may say too much (like over 50+), but I usually stick with either e.l.f. glowy balm in grape or NYX Fat Oil in Newsfeed.

Over the course of my life, something that has been constant is hatred targeted towards gay men who have feminine features and who partake in feminine clothing/makeup. 

I never really thought about the reason behind this, until I got older and realized that many men that consider themselves to be gay have a sort of internalized homophobia towards more feminine men. This is not only seen in my everyday life, but across social media as a whole. 

I am a man who wears makeup and partakes in some feminine hobbies/interests. I was always interested in how people do makeup. I would watch YouTubers and my sister do their makeup but I never really questioned it. 

As I got older, I started buying small amounts of makeup like clear mascara, eyebrow gel, and some blush. I got products that did not show as much, compared to what I wear now. I did this because I didn’t want my family to question anything, but they already knew I was gay, so it was really a matter of time before they knew I started wearing makeup. 

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The biggest struggle between these times was my identity because a lot of people or family would ask, “Are you sure you’re not transgender?” I always said no, because I didn’t know what else to say. I felt trapped into the patriarchal society that we live in, where we fill in boxes about ourselves. It was so frustrating to just hear this over and over again, because at the end of the day I’m still a teenager figuring out who I am. To be asked this really hurt and left me in a place of no identity. 

So with all this, it took a lot longer to figure out who I was. I can now say I am a gay man that loves to wear makeup, either less, or a full beat from time to time. It all depends on my mood, and my motivation towards getting up a little earlier to do it all. 

I would say that I only wear things that I have practiced and know how to do. I know most of the steps for makeup and how to do some on others, I just haven’t mastered eyeliner, lashes, and eyebrows. Everytime I try to do this it doesn’t go well and makes me frustrated that I can’t do it. I was so good at doing the other steps, but it was just these steps holding me back, so I just don’t include it in my routine and just stick to what I know.

Once I began wearing makeup and I told people, “I’m just a guy that wears makeup,” there were some looks from people, but they didn’t tell me anything. But the way they stared told me all–how confused, weird, and disgusted they felt it was for a guy to be wearing makeup. 

On the other hand, most friends loved it and other girls would sometimes ask what products I used? I would end up talking to them about makeup for a while and even recommend some products. I never felt so safe in my life, to just be talking about my passion for makeup. I was truly happy that I had a space where I felt sort of normal. 

Despite the positivity, the negativity was, and still is, hard to deal with. It left me wondering what the reason behind their hatred is. I have never done anything to these guys and they just stare at me like I’m a freak. These questions always lurked until I saw a podcast clip on my FYP on TikTok. They were talking about a point of view in homophobia towards feminine men and then it clicked in my head that this might be a reason why some men target us. 

“Beautiful and Bothered Podcast” is a comedy podcast about feeling beautiful… and staying bothered. It is a series with Johnny Ross and Kevin Banzhaf! “So much beauty, so little time!” Every week they navigate the intersection of pop culture, social media, and life’s endless brothers. They also bring long hysterical guest interviews with some of the biggest names in social media, beauty, comedy, music, and more. New episodes are released every Monday! 

When I saw it, I recognized people such as The Lipstick Lesbians, makeup experts and Johnny Ross, a content creator. I was intrigued by what they said, “People dont hate gay men, they hate femininity, confident femininity.” 

Viewing the comments I noticed I wasn’t the only one shocked by this new perspective. They provided many good reasons for their opinion such as the idea of people not liking what they don’t understand and how people lack any sort of empathy which renders them unable to recognize others’ lived experiences. 

Being a feminine gay guy still poses challenges in today’s society. While there has been improvement with the expansion of same sex marriage rights, there are times where it feels there hasn´t been a lot of change. There is still a significant amount of stigma towards feminine men, and femininity in general, even within the community itself, which is extremely aggravating. You would expect the community to support one another, yet there is still an evident oppression towards feminine men. 

While the community can be very supportive, there is a clear favoritism towards masculine men. There is evidence plastered all over social media, specifically in comment sections where there are a number of followers, with people hyping them up and treating them as these amazing guys that could do no wrong. Opposite of feminine men whose videos tend to get the complete opposite reaction with people acting homophobic and questioning the influencer ́s choice of wearing makeup, clothes, facial features, and overall personality. It may not be all videos regarding feminine men with these types of comments, but it is clear that masculine men tend to have this favoritism from people. 

With all this negativity surrounding feminine men, it also made me feel as if there wouldn’t be support if I decided to do feminine things growing up. With makeup for example, I was always fascinated in makeup and would watch Youtubers/Influencers, but never partook in these activities because of times where I got told, “that’s for girls don’t play with that.” So I just avoided anything “girl” related because some of my family are old fashioned and having the fear that they would see it as me “wasting” my masculinity. 

 When I started junior year, I was scared of what other people would think and being judged by people who I thought to be my friends. However, this didn’t happen. Although there would be times where I was uncomfortable wearing makeup, specifically at family events where I would feel the stares from my relatives, I am thankful to have a supportive mom. She always dismissed everything others would say and just told them to not tell me anything. Overall, it was a very positive process that I have now managed to continue doing by stepping more out of my comfort zone and becoming very confident in myself. 

With times changing and people becoming more accepting, there is probably a future where people don’t question anyone on feminine or masculine traits/hobbies they do. Until then however, it’s important that we recognize the oppression that the community goes through, specifically with feminine men. People need to realize that it’s time they become more accepting of today’s society or just remain silent because such a big stigma on gay men being feminine coming from both outside and inside the community is absurd.

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