Early this month I embarked on a challenge of self-discovery and, more importantly, self-acceptance. I’m joining the girls over at 30DaysNoMakeup and I’m keeping my face makeup free for 30 days. This isn’t a part of a feminist movement or a declaration of hatred towards the cosmetic industry. It’s not even about how others see me. At the bottom of it all, this a lesson in loving the face God has blessed me with. Initially this seemed like a walk in the park – I’m a minimalist by nature. Rarely do I wear a full face of makeup… my daily basics are concealer, bronzer, and mascara. A few days a week I’ll spend a little extra time with eyeliner and eye shadow. But that’s it – wham, bam, thank you ma’am. So when considering this challenge, I was like, “30 days? No makeup? Easy peasy. I can do that.”

Well guess again Danell.

This has been a powerful journey in self- love…. and  at times, self-hatred. Shall we talk about the day that I put on a pair of awesome earrings to only quickly take them off because they brought too much attention to my bare face? Or that day I had to go to a professional workshop without feeling professional. How about every single workday morning that I wake up at 5:30am and look tired for the rest of the day? Then there was date night – not a swipe of sparkles or a brush of lip gloss (I was relieved that we were going to be in a dark theatre rather than a well lit restaurant).  And should we take a moment and talk about selfies? I am typically not a selfie person (I am actually somewhat cynical about the whole notion of selfies) and I tend to shy away from the camera even when I do wear makeup. But here I am, posting clean face selfies  on Instagram with no fancy filters and no special angles. Not to tally up the compliments and not to rake in the “likes,” but to learn to see myself as a beautiful creation of God every single day. But it’s been tough.

How easily my eyes go to the imperfections and flaws. How quickly I become critical.

However, through the sometimes painful moments of starring at myself in the mirror I’m beginning to learn that our imperfections make us perfect

 Those lines on either side of my mouth? Those are the marks of hours upon hours spent smiling and laughing. That little crevice seen  between my eyebrows – I earned that from many nights studying until my eyes went blurry. That little splotch on my right cheek bone – that appeared after my daughter was born. My face is the roadmap of my life and there’s no reason I should have to feel like I need to hide it. I’m finally starting to learn and take joy in this.

On Thursday I enter the last year of my 20s and I want to be able to embrace my natural form, reveling in the fact that God created me – every inch of me, and I was formed by His perfect hands. He had a plan for this face and a grand design for my body. If I can’t look into the mirror and love my face now, when will I be able to? I want the next stage of my life to be about finding my beauty in God’s eyes instead of society’s.

I realize this specific challenge isn’t for everyone… but I want to challenge you to do something to help you see yourself as beautifully as God made you – because He did… He made you gloriously beautiful. You were masterfully designed to look exactly the way you do. What do you need to do to help yourself see and accept that beauty and realize you have nothing to conceal?


You are altogether beautiful, my love; there is no flaw in you

{Song of Solomon 4:7}

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Danell Will

Danell is a Kearney native who recently moved to Northwest Arkansas. She is the happy wife to a tall, bearded red-headed man and a mother to a feisty, but very loveable, red-headed 5-year-old girl. In May, she graduated with her Master’s in Clinical Mental Health Counseling and has since taken a short break from working and studying to be at stay-at-home mom. She enjoys (in no particular order) dance parties in the living room, downward dog, a good cup of chai, books that want to make you stay up until 2am, meaningful conversations over a glass of wine, and reflecting on this messy, but always beautiful life.