Magic bullet
VOGUE India|September 2021
While it won’t replace therapy or traditional coping mechanisms, makeup can serve as a haven if you’re feeling stressed, panicked or upset.
Avanti Dalal

It is 4pm on a Monday and I’m elbow-deep in a pan of purple loose glitter. Everybody else is baking sourdough bread and making major strides in their exercise routine, but I’m experimenting with makeup. While my normal going-out routine is a punchy lipstick and a slick of mascara, I’m sensing great pleasure in taking it to another level: spackling myself with a larger-than-life strip lash, piling on the red lip gloss, sweeping on chromatic highlighter, smearing on more sparkly eyeshadow. Everything outside was bleak, disheartening and frightening, so I took refuge in a beauty ritual I loved best—I stippled, pressed, brushed and blended all my fears, panic and stress into creating a full beat.

It’s not just me. On Instagram, TikTok and Reddit, people were coming out in droves to share their experiences of makeup being a mood booster. When nothing made sense, slapping on some red lipstick could help them feel in control, soothed and more hopeful.

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