Make up and running. (This could be one for just the ladies but I know some of the chaps out there like to dabble). So yes, make up and running. Do or don’t? To be a painted up glamour puss or a natural beauty? I’ve been guilty in the past of being a bit snooty about the ladies who choose to pop a bit of mascara and blusher on before a run or race but I think I’ve had an attitude change. I think make up, including nails and hair, are all about your game face and ritual.
Everyone likes to prepare before a big occasion so why should running a race, a
fairly big huge occasion, be any different? Before my marathon I found the exact shade of nail polish to match my Macmillan Charity vest (Seven Dials by Nails Inc if you really want to know). I defuzzed (definitely more for the girls) and applied my moisturiser and sun screen. It may sound strange but applying my nail polish the night before, with under coat and top coat no less, somehow made me feel ready. If it is possible to feel like that the night before your first marathon! It was my ritual and it relaxed me and my nails were a pretty awesome shade of green.
I may have imagined it but many years ago I saw an interview with Sally Gunnell, the former Olympic 400m hurdles champion, and she talked about making sure her hair, make up and nails were all right before going into a big race. And at London 2012 athletes were not shy about their manicures, braids or their little make up touches. They obviously felt more ready with those things. If sitting down and applying nail wraps, hair dye, braiding hair or getting out the eye pencil for a flicky eye made them game ready and perform to the best of their ability at the biggest event of their lives then who are we to judge? Compete at the Olympics? Yes she did and she looked damn fine doing it too!
Ok so we’re not all aiming for the Olympics. The majority of us are way way way way below elite level but for us amateurs we will find our own ‘big event’ and for that you want to be ready and for everything to be just right or as near perfect as it can be. I’ve had an attitude change and decided that make up and running are not mutually exclusive. Neither should exercise and femininity if you want. There’s no evidence yet that it makes you faster but I like to pretend, however you probably have to be a little bit sensible about it:
Nails painted? Yes. Fake eye lashes? Possibly not as the glue might melt due to the heat and you’ll look like you have two spiders crawling on your face.
Tinted moisturiser with protective SPF and a bit of blusher to make you feel a bit brighter through the nervous nausea? Ok. Fake tan? Probably best not to unless you want to look streaky after the first mile of sweat. You might have another 25 miles to look like a tie dye jump suit.
A bit of tinted lipgloss? Ok then but I’ll leave my Chanel red at home because I tend to wipe my face a lot when I run. Big red Joker face is going to make other people run faster, away from you!
So wear make up or don’t wear make up for your run. It really doesn’t matter as long as you feel prepared and ready. If that’s your bag then don’t worry what other people think. If they’re worried about the make up that you’re wearing to run then they’re not thinking enough about themselves, which in running is a major error. You’ve got to run your own race, lippy or not.
(As a side note I don’t tend to wear a lot of make up for running but I do love make up. My favourite blusher is Nars Orgasm. But I definitely think someone should invent a blusher called Just Run Glow because everyone looks amazing after they’ve been out doing some exercise).