Something Better Than Cosmetics
AFTER referring to “outward aids” that women used as beauty enhancers, the apostle Peter advised: “Instead, your beauty should consist of your true inner self, the ageless beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of the greatest value in God’s sight.”—1 Peter 3:3, 4, Today’s English Version.
Interestingly, when the apostle wrote of such external adornment, he used a form of the Greek word koʹsmos, which is also the root of the English word “cosmetic,” meaning “making for beauty esp[ecially] of the complexion.” Was Peter imposing on Christian women a prohibition relative to the use of makeup and other similar beauty aids? There is nothing in God’s Word that suggests that. Rather, it allows for personal decision on this matter, so a degree of variation in taste can be expected.
However, if the application of makeup is overdone, or done to a degree that disturbs many others, what message is conveyed? Is it not one of harshness, brashness, gaudiness, ostentation, or narcissism? Indeed, it can cheapen a woman’s appearance, possibly giving the wrong impression as to moral character.—Compare Ezekiel 23:36-42.
In recognition of this, a woman “professing to reverence God” will endeavor, if she chooses to apply cosmetics, to have her face reveal the signatures of soundness of mind, gentleness, kindness, and modesty. Such qualities will enhance her grace and charm. In fact, whether she chooses to wear makeup or not, she will manifest a dignity and inner beauty. This will reflect her knowledge that, as Peter’s words quoted above imply, there is something better than cosmetics.—1 Timothy 2:9, 10.