Make Muse was built knowing that young women care about the world, are worried about their futures, and want to have fun in the midst of global chaos, too. On top of that, being a female, non-binary, or femme individual comes with unfair societal standards and expectations. We intend to be the place to find the muse to make a change to gender-based societal standards by voicing experiences and propelling action. As the go-to media brand for late-teen and early-twenty-something women-identifying people, we highlight the vast and varied experiences of young women and non-binary individuals and all of the cool things they do--on any scale.
We're passionate about being a community, providing a platform for you to share your own work, and sharing true stories about real people. Along with our regular contributors of writers, photographers, and artists, we invite you to submit your work for inclusion on the website and in future print publications.
We are female-focused and use an inclusive definition of “woman” and “female”- we welcome trans women, genderqueer women, and non-binary people who are significantly female-identified. We encourage men, women, those who identify as neither, both, or somewhere in between to interact with content and submit work. Though we seek to amplify the collective voices of female-identifying creators, we understand that the issues we talk about must include dialogue with members from across the spectrum of genders. We want to amplify and accessify the voices of all who have something to say on this topic!
Make Muse tells the stories of individuals doing cool stuff on any scale, rather than focusing on known-names or celebrities. Covering a wide range of intelligent topics- body, fashion, career, education, government, activism, wellness, community, art, and entertainment,- we know that young women are not solely interested in style or food or art. Our content focuses on challenging gender roles and encouraging our readers to be daring, action-oriented, and most importantly, who they are, despite whatever society says they should be like.
When Make Muse Founder Maura Sheedy was 16, in Fall 2014, a typical Friday afternoon suddenly became not-so-typical.
On Fridays, Maura and her friends would always spend the afternoon getting ready with each other for whatever outing they had scheduled for the night. They would talk endlessly about their makeup, hair, and outfits for later the night on the walk home and during the getting-ready-rituals. Every. Single. Week.
On one particular Friday evening, Maura was in the midst of this recurring conversation with her friends. But this time, untypically, she could not help thinking about how much time, energy, and money are devoted to looking “perfect.”
She surprised herself by saying, “Guys, what if I went a year without wearing makeup?”
A few days later, she inaugurated microblog @makeuplessmaura on Instagram to document spending the next entire year makeup-free. For 365 days, she posted makeup-free selfies, self-love quotes, rants on the beauty industry, natural makeup recipes, interviews with others on real beauty, and, of course, updates on her own experience with makeup and body image.
Her goal became to dive as deep into the issue of makeup in society as she could. Maura hoped to inspire people to reconsider the idea that beauty means makeup and to be aware of the many flaws of the beauty industry. Promoting overall self-acceptance was a key goal.
Today, living a makeup-free year still remains a defining period in Maura's life. However, after her makeupless experience, watching the 2016 political climate in action, and holding her first job in a corporate setting, she came to the conclusion that beauty standards are not the only expectations for females that need to change. She saw it in beauty, politics, workplaces, and so many more areas that she witnessed.
Make Muse, an online news and media site and print publication, is a continuation of Makeupless Maura and as well as a response to these experiences. As a feminist and go-getter, Maura, along with her amazing team, hope to prove that ALL existing and emerging societal standards for females, trans women, genderqueer women, and non-binary people who are significantly female-identified must be challenged.
FAQ: How did you come up with name Make Muse? Make is a derivative from "makeupless," the origin of Make Muse, and speaks to our mission of encouraging others to actually go out there and DO something. Muse speaks to the fact that not only do we encourage action, but we give you the inspiration and catalyze movements, decisions, and progression with photos, writing, and art. Additionally, Make Muse is a play off of “make music” and speaks to the takeaway of the poem “Ode” by Arthur O'Shaughnessy. In the poem's first stanza, there is a line about music makers and an overall message about making the world a place that you want it to be.