Coverboys bring eyeliner to campus

Noah Riggen photo by Victoria Tinker

By Collin Berend

Why do we find it taboo for men to wear makeup?

For most of my life, I have seen the notion of males wearing cosmetics as a big “no no.” Makeup, like lipstick, foundation, eyeliner or mascara are seem as a female- only product. I’ve lived my life perplexed by this social rule that has hovered over me most of my life. But why does this taboo exist?

The simple, yet hardly satisfying answer is that times have changed. People, as a collective, have trends. We see it with fashion all the time. Men not wearing makeup changed from being normal the same way no one wears parachute pants. At least, for the sake of all that is holy, no one does.

But throughout history, there have been those that do, and some push for that androgynistic appearance. David Bowie is well known for it, as well as American Idol alumni Adam Lambert, Kiss and Boy George.

Musicians of the 2000s, such as lead vocalist Gerard Way of the now disbanded “My Chemical Romance” and Andy Biersack of theAmerican rock band “Black Veil Brides,” are known for wearing makeup on stage and in video.

Most people know Jared Leto, who played the Joker in Suicide Squad, was the lead vocalist for “Thirty Seconds to Mars” and is well known for his guyliner.

What’s guyliner? Guyliner is when a male wears eyeliner. Odd that we attribute another name for something like that. It’s a peddling process.

“It’s about your emotions,” said Max Dorsey, a student at Clackamas Community College who wears makeup. “You want to portray it in a physical way. I think people are not used to it still. It’s so weird. People will question you like, “Are you gay or something?” It’s like, does it have to be? Because I’m totally [heterosexual]. You want to be as gentle as your makeup.”

Let’s be honest; makeup isn’t for everyone and not every guy is into it. Some might if they tried, but the majority are not. And that’s fine.

When I came out to the world as a male wearing makeup, the first thing I was questioned by family was if I was gay. As if cosmetics on my face somehow was related to my sexuality. If so, then I must be the gayest man on campus, because you’d be hard pressed to find another male wearing as much makeup as I do. But the truth is, I’m not gay. Not that it matters, my sexuality isn’t related to my wearing ofmakeup, so what’s the problem?



The problem I find is society’s reaction and response to men wearing makeup. Simple. On the other page you can see our makeup review by our wonderful female staff , but had that been a guy, the reaction may have been different, and that’s a scandal.

“You get a lot more looks than if a girl were to wear makeup, despite it being a similar style or the same makeup that’s just on a boy,” said former CCC student Noah Riggen, who also wears makeup. “I feel it’s even harder from a professional standpoint. I feel businesses and public entities give you as much credit or respect as a woman that wears makeup.”

“And it’s limited my job opportunities and my chances of getting a job,” said Riggen. “I feel people just don’t know what to do with it. It’s not the norm. I don’t think people get that it’s no different than a woman wearing makeup.”

At the end of the day, minds will not simply change at the snap of a fi nger, nor will this opinion piece truly change the world, but it’s a step. I hope those reading who think males shouldn’t wear makeup should reconsider the absurdity of that asinine belief.

Autumn Berend

Autumn Berend is the Editor-in-Chief for The Clackamas Print. Her focus is primarily news reports and briefs. She is the author of the inactive column "The Paradoxical" and author of the on-going column "The Angry Tranny".