Do you feel others treat you differently if you wear makeup?

Do you feel others treat you differently if you wear makeup? Share!

I think in certain environments, for sure. In my day-to-day life and where I live, I don’t really experience any difference other than if someone notices and compliments me on my makeup. I have seen people treat me worse in an academic environment for wearing brighter or bolder makeup, and I have gotten better treatment when wearing makeup when shopping (slightly better, but in general, I don’t feel like I’ve gotten worse treatment if I go in bare faced – but I don’t do a lot of in-store shopping!).

Thanks to Luisana for today’s question! Do you have a question idea? Submit yours here.

We hope you'll consider supporting Temptalia by shopping through our links below. Thanks!

Compare Any Two Swatches

Curious how two shades compare to each other? Type in the shades below to get instant side-by-side swatches!

We hope you'll consider supporting Temptalia by shopping through our links below. Thanks!


Comments that do not adhere to our comment policy may be removed. Discussion and debate are highly encouraged but we expect community members to participate respectfully. Please keep discussion on-topic, and if you have general feedback, a product review request, an off-topic question, or need technical support, please contact us!

Please help us streamline the comments' section and be more efficient: double-check the post above for more basic information like pricing, availability, and so on to make sure your question wasn't answered already. Comments alerting us to typos or small errors in the post are appreciated (!) but will typically be removed after errors are fixed (unless a response is needed).

We appreciate enthusiasm for new releases but ask readers to please hold questions regarding if/when a review will be posted as we can't commit to or guarantee product reviews. We don't want to set expectations and then disappoint readers as even products that are swatched don't always end up being reviewed due to time constraints and changes in priorities! Thank you for understanding!

Comments on this post are closed.
We hope you'll consider supporting Temptalia by shopping through our links below. Thanks!

I find that people treat me more nicely, especially strangers. I work at Tim Hortons (fast food coffee shop for anyone who doesn’t know!) and the days I wear bright lips and really enhance my eyes people treat me much more kindly and respectfully in general.

I totally agree with you about being treated differently in an academic environment. I’m in my third year of law and when I meet people and am wearing bright/bold makeup, they seem surprised that I’m intelligent and completing a law degree. Similarly, people seem to be more likely to ask me for help when I’m in the library/in class when I’m not wearing makeup. It’s as if people think wearing makeup and enjoying playing with makeup = a lack of intelligence. Very sad 🙁 But I do think the rise of blogging is starting to make that opinion diminish.

I almost never go without makeup outside the house, so not sure. All I know is that I feel a lot better with some makeup on, and because I look better and feel more confident with makeup , others probably treat me better. But when I go shopping for makeup in the stores, the more makeup I wear, the more the SAs pay attention to me! But if I want to be be left alone to browse, I’ll wear less makeup.

I’ve never felt I was treated poorly because I chose not to wear makeup on any given day. I almost *never* wear makeup when I go shopping, and haven’t for well over 20 years, and I’ve only had one really negative experience, at one counter. However, just 5 minutes before, I had an incredible experience at the NARS counter, which was less the 15 feet away, so… I feel confident with or without makeup, and see it no differently than any other accessory, and since I wouldn’t get treated any worse for not wearing earrings, why would makeup be any different?

I feel like people I know treat me differently and honestly it kind of irks me. Unless it’s my immediate family or best friend, they ask me if I’m sick or tired. I always try to be nice about it, but it makes me think, “Oh, so that’s how you feel about how I REALLY look.” Maybe it’s a little sensitive, but sometimes I can’t help but feel a little hurt about it.

my family always, ALWAYS asks me if I’m sick or something when I don’t wear makeup. It happened yesterday. It hurts my feelings because I feel pretty with a bare face.. then I get brought down hard.

I know what you mean. It sucks when you feel confident, and you’re proud of yourself for feeling confident, and then it’s like — ooook, never mind. It’s not our fault though. We’re taught that we’re supposed to look like we do in makeup all the time, but we’re not, and if anyone can’t understand that, they’re the ones who need help!

Sometimes even when I wear makeup, people still tell me I look sick/tired! For that reason, I always wear makeup when meeting with friends. =( But to run errands, I can go bare faced.

I think it depends on the circumstances. When I am at work without my make up on, my colleagues ask if I am ok. I am so pale I can look ill without some make up on. If I’m at home or out and about dressed casually I don’t feel the need to put on make up.

I have the same type of treatment if I’m wearing bright or bold colors. As a blonde spending over 14 years in the banking/investment industry, I have learned to stay away from that and stick with neutrals and stick with a light hand in application. I keep a few brights on hand just to accent on the weekends.

Yes, definitely they do. My boyfriend seems to fawn over me more with mascara and eyeliner, but like.. a full face of foundation and lipstick gets me nothing. My dad or girlfriends at work will ask me if I lost weight when I do a full face of makeup, but I know it’s just contouring.

Funnily enough, the louder my makeup at work, the more people talk to me? I work in a call center, so it’s not super professional, but wearing bright rainbow eyeshadow seems to cancel out my chronic bitch-face. If I wear something classic, like a pin-up look, they keep leaving me alone.

Yup, definitely. People are generally nicer. I get more compliments like “did you do something different?” or “your skin is glowing” etc. Obviously, guys flirt with me more. I’m a kindergarten teacher and this is the most fascinating thing- my students respond and listen better when I wear makeup, especially bright lipstick! I suspect that they are so busy staring at my face, they forget to get distracted by other things, and therefore listen more. They tell me things like I look “fancy” and like I’m “going to a party” (LOL!!!). One little boy in particular will let out a big sigh and blurt out “beautiful!” while the girls all argue over who gets to sit closest to me. For any teachers out there, try it an see.

That’s really interesting how your students respond to your makeup. It’s insane to think that their minds have been moulded by such a young age.

Only at work where I’m supposed to wear make up, so if I don’t I get risen eyebrows. Also, if you go places like MAC, Sephora, Nordstrom amd the likes, without make up, they assume that you don’t know the first thing about anything.
Curiously enough once a dude told me that females without make up seem more approacheable.

This may sound odd but for me it depends greatly on the part of town I’m in. I live in a suburb of a moderately-sized city, and when I’m close to home I notice virtually no difference in the treatment or service I receive bare-faced or full-on #teamfake. This means that until recently I’ve worn almost no makeup to work (I’m on a low-buy and trying to use up some products, so I’ve been wearing a full face more often recently).

However, I used to work in an upscale mall across town in a wealthier area. My job was pretty physical a lot of the time and wearing makeup wasn’t very practical. I noticed that if I stopped into other stores before and after work, in nice-looking street clothes but no makeup, I got little to no service. The few times I wore a full face, or since then when I’ve been in the area just to shop, sales people fell over themselves to try and help me. It’s more than a little disconcerting when to see the difference, honestly.

I do actually 🙁 I work at a bar and I’ve noticed that no matter how my service is, my tips are better when I wear contacts+makeup as opposed to no makeup and/or glasses. I also have noticed that in Ulta and Sephora if I go in with a face of makeup on the employees are friendlier and more willing to chat with me about makeup. I also do think I get treated a little worse in academic environments with bold makeup, just like you said

It’s interesting you mention contacts–bc for me, people treat me differently most noticeably depending on whether or not I have glasses on. I’m a server at a family restaurant–I get more tips if I wear glasses + full face makeup more than contacts+makeup, contacts+no makeup, or glasses +no makeup. In an academic environment, I get treated differently just based on whether or not I’m wearing glasses. But for makeup counters and sephora stores, I almost always go in with a bare-face and I’ve almost always had great service. I’ve never had bad service–perhaps just not great.

Very interesting topic–reminds me that it’s important to keep an open mind but people are instinctively judgmental.

Defiantly! I don’t usually wear makeup for work as there isn’t really a need, one day I came in with makeup on as I was going out straight after and everybody was commenting on how lovely I looked, that I was a different girl and people kept coming up to talk to me for no reason, got me thinking I will have to wear it more often. Oddly I also find at makeup counters, the people tend to take me more seriously as a buyer when I’m wearing makeup.

ABSOLUTELY!!! Makeup generally transforms me and my lack of eyebrows. I have been downright ignored without makeup. Then with makeup, hair done, dolled up I have noticed people go out of their way to help me, compliment me, or say hello…. We live in a superficial world, It is evident.

I regularly feel the difference. At work, on the street. People look at me completely differently when I’m wearing makeup. At work if I don’t wear makeup I’m not taking good care of myself — people assume I’m sick or tired or over-stressed. Shopping, same experience. People look at you with respect when you’re wearing makeup. The worst is makeup shopping, of course, though I think it makes perfect sense to go naked-faced if you’re going to be tyring on products. Sales associates treat you as a stupid child unless you already have makeup on.

I just commented something similar! I don’t know why sales associates are nicer/more attentive to someone wearing makeup. It’s definitely not in response to my attitude — I’m always smiling and happy when I’m shopping for makeup! lol

I have definitely noticed a difference when I am at work and when I am receiving customer service like at a coffee shop or store. If my hair and makeup is done-up, I am treated nicer and smiled at more. :-/ I don’t really know how to feel about that! The last time I went bare faced to work, everyone said I looked tired and/or sick.

One morning I hadn’t put on mascara yet & my bf asked if I was tired that day, haha. After putting on mascara he said I looked ‘more awake’ 😛 I have really short, straight lashes naturally.

I know makeup can make a big difference, but I wish people wouldn’t make such a big deal about it. I work in an office, and while I don’t wear a lot of makeup (usually a base, blush and mascara, and the odd time eye liner), I’d really like to experiment with lipsticks more. But at work, even wearing a “my lips but better” shade, I’ve had compliments (or comments) about it – and I don’t like it. I think it’s just a weird societal thing… People are used to commenting/ giving their opinion on women’s bodies/ appearances and it’s just very strange to me that we accept that kind of commentary.

That’s interesting. I actually use several products marketed for men so I’m definitely going to pay special attention. Thank you.

The only people that treat me differently are MAC or Sephora employees. Well, it’s more noticeable with Sephora employees. MAC employees are just slightly less rude if I’m wearing makeup. Sephora employees are more helpful and attentive if I’m wearing makeup. I tend to go makeup free on the weekends, especially if I plan on buying makeup because I want to be able to see how the product looks on me. I spend far more money on makeup than I do on groceries, etc., but the people who are employed in other customer service industries are far friendlier to me when I’m not wearing makeup. Thank God for online shopping!

In general, I think most people have preconceived notions about what is appropriate in different situations and so they react negatively or with curiosity when they see someone sporting a look that isn’t consistent with the occassion or environment. Whether it is too much makeup or no makeup at all isn’t really the issue. It comes down to matching the look to the situation. As for cosmetic shopping, of course SA’s are going to respond more favorably to someone who is wearing beautifully applied makeup even if it is minimal. Being well madeup shows the SA you’re interested in products and you know how to use them which means you’ll probably purchase more than the person who looks like they never use the stuff.

Absolutely. Ditto on not being treated as well in academia while wearing bolder colors.
Meanwhile I’m also treated far less kindly when I’m not wearing makeup at all–I have a chronic illness, and the fatigue really shows on my face. People actively avoid me when I don’t have my dark circles covered. It’s kind of cruel, honestly.

It really depends. When I’m in an academic setting I have gotten multiple “compliments” when I wear makeup. I tend to get “but you’re too pretty to study neuroscience” or “what? You want to be a doctor? You don’t look it!” It’s really disappointing that people only believe that beauty cannot be present in the presence of strong academic goals and achievements. I know that they mean it as a compliment, but it shows a sad mindset in society.

Aside from that, I do get more compliments when I am wearing makeup. When purchasing makeup at a store, I also get much more positive attention when I’m wearing makeup. When I’m not, I have had sales assistants trail me to make sure that I’m not stealing. Just because I’m bare-faced, doesn’t mean that I’m going to steal your makeup. -__-

I love make up but sometimes i just want to leave the house just with a moisturizer with spf .my funniest though exoerience was when i put on my lips l’absolu rouge in 368 rose Lancome and i received compliments from a girl working in the Chanel Counter! She told me :”wow that lipstick you’ re wearing icompliments you very much!” And i was like ” yeah but you shouldn’t have said that!this is a Lancome lipstick i’m wearing! Not a Chanel one! ” we both was a very cute moment

I often go bare-faced for regular errands, but if I’m going to a nicer store or a place that sells cosmetics (especially Sephora), I always put on at least a little makeup. The SAs will flat-out ignore me if I’m bare-faced. It’s so bad at Sephora that I shop there less than I might otherwise. It’s not an individual store location issue either–I’ve experienced this at Sephoras in three different states.

I’ve had this issue at multiple Sephoras in the past, but thankfully my local one back at home has always treated me nicely with or without makeup on!

I feel as if I’m treated poorly because of my interest in makeup. I mean I get compliments all the time on my makeup (especially my brows which is amazing since I barely have any to begin with). But if I’m asked how I did a certain technique and I explain it I mainly get scoffs and “I don’t have time for that”. Quite irritating :/

Yes, people do. I have Rosacea so people always comment how good I look when I wear foundation. When I wear red lips I always get compliments from men and women alike.

Yes, I more often than not get treated much differently when I wear makeup in both a negative and positive way.

When going out, I like to switch up my looks a lot. This includes very bold, unusual full face makeup from time to time (think runway or avant garde inspired, funky colored lips, heavy eye makeup à la drag queen, etc.) I either get compliments on how “brave” I am to wear it out and about, or dirty looks / comments and borderline fear. (And don’t even get me started on people who actually try and take a picture of me without me noticing. So rude.)

For my gentler, more “everyday” makeup, people seem to be much nicer to me when I wear makeup. Which is unfortunate because with my sensitive, acne ridden skin I can’t wear foundation / concealer every day (my skin worsens if I wear makeup multiple days in a row), and people tend to treat me better when they are under the impression that I don’t have visible cystic acne. Very frustrating. 🙁

I’ve experienced all sides :p

I wear little makeup day to day only because I work early so i dont have the time, but the times I do feel up to it I always get comments about it. Usually along the line “Do you have a date tonight?” I don’t why people automatically assume I’m “dressing up” for others.

I’ve noticed a change though in my area at cosmetic counters. Before when I didnt wear makeup to MAC, Sephora, etc i would be virtually ignored by the SA’s but now if I go in w/o makeup they hound me until I tell them to leave me alone. I wonder if they’ve changed they’re marketing strategy and go after “inexperienced” no makeup wearing shoppers to saddle them with a bunch of products they dont need?

It’s always a different experience each time 🙂

I feel like I definitely get treated differently in Ulta or Sephora when I don’t have makeup on. I do most of my shopping at those places on the weekends, and I don’t feel like being made up everyday. I agree with what someone else posted, sometimes they hound me more when I don’t have makeup on, almost like I am inexperienced and they can talk me into buying everything, and I have also felt like they thought I was going to shoplift and they have tailed me. It really ticks me off pretty badly as I am VIB Rouge at Sephora and Platinum at Ulta. They usually treat me different when I pull out the VIB Rouge card when I go to pay.

Of course people judge others , whether it be because of their makeup choices, hair color, clothing, tattoos, piercing, etc. It’s unfortunate, but it’s human nature. I do it as well, but I have personally make a conscious effort to not do so. I personally have multiple tattoos, and jewel implants. However, I am also an Emergency Room/Trauma nurse, and have been for 23 years, and happen to be great at what I do. The ironic thing is, my patients are always intrigued by my style and always ask, in a respectful manner, what the significance is of my tattoos, my purple hair color, etc. As nurses, we are expected to be nonjudgemental, yet Human Resources and the “powers that be” of many hospital institutions will judge upon appearance immediately. Thankfully, I’m very good at what I do, so they accept my quirkiness. I embrace my oddness. As should everyone else. And before making that initial judgement, get to know someone first. They may end up being a pretty special person that has a lot to offer someone. Okay…..I’m off my soapbox. Thanks for allowing me to express myself!

I do notice how ppl treat me differently on days i wear makeup versus days when i dont wear any (there’s usually a breakout or rwo smh) Especially at my job. Its like “omg! You got on makeup? Where you going???” Then on days when i dont , its the “she doent have on makeup” look.

I don’t feel like I get treated differently at all. I think that a lot of it is that I’ve got a really prominent, unusual tattoo–the word “storyteller” in big black letters on my forearm–and that’s always what people notice and react to first.

Definitely. I feel generally more respected and noticed (in a good way) when I wear makeup than when I’m out bare-faced. That’s especially true when I have to get someone’s help or attention, like in a store, at the post office… On the other hand, I can see people glancing when I wear something really bright or colorful.
I find both cases a little sad. I wish people (and I’m including myself) would refrain from judging someone based on physical appearance or style so much that it affects their behavior towards that person.

Outside of emergencies, I almost never leave the house without at least foundation, concealer, and mascara if I know I’ll be getting out of my car (thank you, acne and acne scars and extremely hooded eyes). So I’m sure if I went into work with no makeup, co-workers would immediately be concerned and I’m sure at least a few customers would see it as unprofessional. I wouldn’t say that I’ve ever been treated poorly in a store for not having on a full eye look, but I do think I get overlooked a bit more. It’s as if some of them assume I’m just along for the ride instead of intending to purchase.

When I am in the city, it’s a bit of an urban stampede, and if I am made up, I feel that people are more likely to notice me and not walk into me, or elbow me away. Seriously. Conversely, when I go to the country, I really tone the make up down a lot and the nail polish because there the look is more natural and I don’t want to stand out in a bad way. In either location, I would never go out (except doing errands round the neighborhood or when I have a little summer color) without concealer, eye brow pencil, blush and lipstick, and a dash of eyeliner. My skin and features are pale and disappear without it. The thing that really makes the big difference is my hair. I have longish naturally wavy hair. If I have a job interview or meeting with a new client, I always blow it dry which ordinarily I don’t bother with. Any time my hair is professionally blown dry, people are more complimentary etc. I like my curls, but most people don’t, it seems.

I never leave the house without a full face of makeup, so I can’t really vouch for that, but I can definitely agree with being in an academic environment (I’m in pharmacy school). I’m pretty petite, wear a decent amount of makeup, and a good deal of my clothes make me look like I’m 16. This is kind of a hat trick of confusion for many people and I tend to get underestimated in a lot of ways. Personally, I kind of like that, because it throws people off when they realize that I’m quite good at what I do. The men especially tend to see the makeup-less, stereotypically “nerdy” looking girls as academic competition, so to be honest I love when they realize it’s the tiny girl with the winged eyeliner and bright lipstick they should be worried about!

Yes I do think people treat you differently when you are wearing makeup and your clothes suit you, are clean and ironed. Many years ago when I was advising graduate teachers coming into the profession I advised them about dressing professionally and for the girls to wear a little makeup – not too overdone. I told them it creates a professional impression that this job is worthy of looking good everyday. It sets a tone. As I always wear makeup (and always have done so) I think it makes a difference.

I don’t give 2 shits to notice or care what other people think. If someone is rude, they’re the one with a problem..not me.

Plus we do it to ourselves. Tons of comments say you don’t leave the house without makeup. People never see your true beauty or features. Or thinking your sick because you don’t have on makeup. Did you ever stop and think they’re asking this because you normally take the time out to put on makeup and didn’t this day. Maybe they ask if your tierd because you didn’t take the time to get ready, not because you look sick or tierd physically. Unless they say you have bags under your eyes and look like your ill or sick because your face looks bad, don’t take it out on yourself. If they do say this they’re not thinking and that advice should be ignored. I Love makeup I wear it everyday but lately I’m embracing my natural skin and features. We’re all human, we all have flaws, imperfections are perfectly normal and human of us. Have you ever seen a perfect looking beauty, pampered to the max, beyond beautiful? A lot of people say I wish I looked like that..well I dont. I think dang her vag must smell like a fish market..because no one is perfect. They’re hiding something real nasty under that

I am really obese, which most people – consciously or subconsciously – seem to equate with being lazy, having poor self-estem, and being slovenly and stupid. I’m none of those things. I think I get treated much better when I wear makeup and nice outfits than if I don’t. At the grocery store, gas station, etc., it doesn’t matter as much. The general public and salesmen definitely are more positive toward me when I wear makeup. I wear makeup because I like it, though.

I look really young, a lot younger than I am, which is not necessarily a good thing. When I do not wear make up and I am out shopping, I get called sweetie or salespeople think my mom is the one planning to spend the money if I am with her. If I wear a brighter or bolder lipstick, I get called ma’am or salespeople assume I am the one ready to spend the money. My experiences have been pretty stark in this regard.

Yes, yes, yes, I’m treated very different. I’m a professional female firefighter. I purposely don’t wear makeup at work for many reasons. When I’m outside of work and wear makeup my co-workers don’t even know how to react to me. As if they never knew me. Like I’m this hot chick off the street, not the coworker who together just put out a rippin house fire. I get treated differently by most everyone when I don’t wear makeup. and it’s not like I look completely different either. Sometimes I go without makeup on purpose, just to see how miss treated and rude people can be.

It depends. Some men tend to treat me as if I was easier to get when I was wearing a little bolder (not trashy or tasteless at all) make-up. But in stores (beauty or fashion), I usually get nicer treatment, because I seem trendy,

I don’t think so, I’ve never noticed it! I pretty much always go to my work (supermarket) without makeup, and I’ve never noticed people being unfriendlier or something. If anything, it was one of my coworkers who thought I was fifteen (hmpf) so that might be the only thing, haha 😉

I should test this out with no makeup, bright makeup and natural makeup! I’d be interested in the results.
Half the time I don’t wear any makeup and half the time I wear a natural type makeyp (a “my face but better” type of makeup). The only thing I’ve noticed is that people compliment my clothes when I wear makeup. Like.. “This colour really suits you!” but really my skin just looks better because of the makeup lol

Yes people do, especially at work. When I’m not wearing eye makeup, I get comments like ‘seems like you haven’t had enough sleep’ or ‘you look tired’ or like ‘guess you don’t feel like working today’.

Yes I do definitely get noticed a lot, and get a lot of compliments. As to when I’m without makeup I totally feel invisible.

I have also noticed that when I go to Sephora, Ulta, and especially MAC with a full face makeup . I get better service.

Yes, I work in a Walmart neighborhood market. When I started to wear makeup to keep my spirit up while fighting depression without any medication, people took notice. Especially when I wear a bold or bright lip or a colored eye shadow. I’ve ended selling some Milani Lipsticks that way. The old guys look forward to seeing and talking to me, they seem to smile more and it seem to brighten their day. The girls look forward to seeing what I’m wearing and talking makeup.

BTW my husband has taken a slight interest in the world of makeup since it is now my new obsession. He thinks its weird but cool that playing with makeup can make a girl happy.

Absolutely and it’s unfortunate. Maybe it also has to do with my over all appearance. The only day I don’t wear makeup is Sunday as its my only day off so I also wear a bun and flip flops. I just look like A mess all the way around. Side note, I don’t really like shopping for make up in store. If I have my makeup done I feel like if got people surrounding me and super pressured and if I don’t I get completely ignored.

Absolutely!!! I am 6’1″ with a bald head and I can’t function without a pair of stilettos. I’m striking enough without makeup but once I “beat” my face there is a difference that’s difficult to ignore. All of the attention is always positive. I mostly get “you look like a model” even though I’m 175 lbs. When I dress down I don’t get nearly as much attention.

Yeah, definitely. But that’s also because without makeup I look very young and I barely look my actual age when I wear my usual makeup, so people tend to think I’m a lot younger without makeup! Which I’m sure I’ll love later on, but I’m getting really sick of people asking me how 8th grade is (I’m a junior in high school) And if I wear more makeup I can look a couple years older, so it’s mostly about age

I’m older and get completely ignored in any store, grocery, discount, where ever unless I’m wearing makeup. So for me makeup equals better service. But sometimes I do like being unseen.

We try to approve comments within 24 hours (and reply to them within 72 hours) but can sometimes get behind and appreciate your patience! 🙂 If you have general feedback, product review requests, off-topic questions, or need technical support, please contact us directly. Thank you for your patience!