Female students, teachers and staff at a New Jersey high school ditched their usual makeup routines Friday as part of a campaign to support natural beauty.
The girls and women at Northern Valley High School in Old Tappan say they're protesting the idea that cosmetics and superficial appearance define beauty.
"They don't need makeup to be beautiful," said 17-year-old junior Lauren Alberti, who organized the face-off against makeup in a daylong campaign called "I Support Natural Beauty."
Alberti said she got the idea while researching for a group discussion about body image at her church.
Alberti started a Facebook page which drew several hundred responses and snowballed into the school project. “I Support Natural Beauty” stickers could be seen on sweaters and backpacks Friday.
“It fits into our character building program,” said Patrick Nagy, the superintendent of schools for the Northern Valley Regional High School District.
The student-led effort follows recent rounds of celebrities going publicly barefaced, including Kim Kardashian, Lady Gaga and Snooki. "Today" show hosts Kathie Lee Gifford and Hoda Kotb appeared on a broadcast without makeup.
Still, not every female student bought into the idea of going totally without makeup.
"I think it makes everybody look better," said one girl. "And even though people have beauty on the inside, they like to show on the outside, too."
Just like a good makeup artist, male students had to handle the day with a diplomatic hand.
“They look great," said 18-year-old Nicholas Zahos.
Seventeen-year-old Nimon Ibrahimaj added, “I really don’t like too much makeup on a girl."