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Alicia Keys isn't judging people who wear makeup

Alicia Keys and husband Swizz Beatz walk the red carpet before the MTV Video Music Awards on Aug. 29, 2016.
Alicia Keys and husband Swizz Beatz walk the red carpet before the MTV Video Music Awards on Aug. 29, 2016.
Published Sep. 1, 2016

Alicia Keys is a natural wonder, a gifted singer-songwriter and a barenaked face in a TV sea of lip kits and falsies.

Not that there is anything wrong with those. More on that in a second.

Keys, as you may have heard, is going without makeup this summer (she broke the news in a Lenny Letter essay May 31. No lipstick, no concealer. No makeup for tapings of her new show "The Voice," nor for her performance at the Democratic National Convention in July.

"Why try to be like anyone else, there's only one you! Shinin' & feeling Très Chic!!" she tweeted Aug. 12 about her Grazia cover.

Then the VMAs came along Sunday on MTV, and some dum-dums trolled Keys for either not putting on a red-carpet face or for perceiving her as judging others who like makeup.

She addressed them on Twitter, saying basically, it's not you, it's me.

Husband Swizz Beatz backed her up in an Instagram video.

"Somebody sitting home mad because somebody didn't wear makeup on their face...not your face," Beatz said. "You can do whatever you want to do. She didn't tell y'all to wear no makeup. She's just not vibing with the makeup all the way 100 percent."

Keys' choice has been hard to miss, but she's been pretty quiet about it — which I admire. If you scan her Twitter timeline, you see messages about what's in store for the day or more somber reflections about Black Lives Matter and helping refugees.

Her #nomakeup wasn't just a gimmick. She's said her piece, and she's sticking to it.

"I hope to God it's a revolution," she wrote in Lenny Letter. "'Cause I don't want to cover up anymore. Not my face, not my mind, not my soul, not my thoughts, not my dreams, not my struggles, not my emotional growth. Nothing."

I'm still free to enjoy the revival of my cat-eye (thanks Stila liquid liner!) and inspired not to fret about every perceived facial shortcoming, too.

Like she said: Do you!

The original version of this post misspelled the name of Keys' husband. I not only regret but am ashamed about the error.


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