Officials at a school in Britain decided that girls were spending too much time fixing themselves up in the girls' bathroom, so they banned makeup. When girls kept showing up to school looking like Taylor Momsen, administrators took the next logical step: Ripping the mirrors out of the walls and providing teachers with "makeup removal kits" (we're guessing this high-tech makeup detection kit consists of a pack of makeup remover wipes).
According to our ever-entertaining friends at the Daily Mail, girls at Shelley College in Huddersfield were originally allowed to wear "discreet" makeup, but unsurprisingly teens interpreted this to mean heavy eyeliner and layers of mascara. Children at the co-ed school wear uniforms, but administrators weren't just worried that the girls' elaborately painted faces were distracting other students. Just as early humans would congregate around a fire, the girls were drawn to the mirror in the girls' bathroom and would meet there to share gossip and get eye infections from trying each other's makeup. Head teacher John McNally says:
There comes a point when you need to stop teachers spending half an hour in the day talking to girls about their make-up. It is more sensible to say it's not allowed. We removed the mirrors because there were a number of girls who were going in to the toilets at lunchtime and hanging around in there and eating their sandwiches.
The school could simply ban girls from bringing their lunches into the bathroom (and should because that's gross), but removing mirrors from the walls works too. Except, sometimes you just want to check on the status of a pimple or make sure there isn't food stuck in your teeth, and makeup can still be applied using a hand mirror. McNally adds:
The girls were attracted to the mirrors and when we removed them the problem stopped. Most have accepted the policy as the vast majority did not wear make-up and those who wore a little have been happy to stop. The fuss is being caused by about five or six girls, who are the ones who wear the most make-up. We have had a lot of support from parents. Of course some of the girls are trying to push the boundaries.
The new makeup policy only applies to 14 to 16-year-olds, as younger girls were never allowed to wear makeup. The older class is exempt and are free to be painted trollops.
Some girls are furious about the ban and say wearing makeup makes them feel more confident. Teenagers have enough trouble accepting their looks and it seems a bit cruel to take away something that could make them feel a bit more comfortable. They've already given up the right to wear jeggings and t-shirts with rude slogans, but what you put on your face is even more personal than clothing. On the other hand, maybe it's a good time for girls to learn that they look fine even when their faces aren't coated in makeup, or as 14-year-old student Rebecca Mannifield put it, "nobody is no prettier or uglier, we all just look normal."
Image via Gorilla/Shutterstock.