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Makeup Challenged
Karen Avery, Management Consultant

Her Backstory: A single mother of 10-month-old twins who often works a 60-hour week, Karen, 41, doesn’t need to think long when asked why she rarely puts on makeup: "No time." And even when she can find a moment, she's too overwhelmed to focus on the task at hand. Having decided to apply some eye makeup at a stoplight during a recent morning commute, "hours later a colleague commented on the 'interesting' look I was trying—I'd only done one eye before the light turned green," she says, "and never finished the job." But there's another reason eyeliner and mascara are no longer part of her life. Karen feels less feminine since her daughters' arrival. "I never expected this," she says. "I thought giving birth was the most feminine thing you can do." But her new identity as a mother has overshadowed not only her old morning makeup routine, but her femininity, too.

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