Glow Up vs Makeover

I’ve seen quite a few YouTube videos with the words ‘glow up’ in the title, when the video itself is about a makeover. And I get that using the term glow up is probably better when it comes to SEO, I feel like this can and has caused some confusion about what exactly the difference is between a glow up and a makeover.

With this post, I hope I can clear up some of this confusion, and offer my opinion on what the difference is between the two.

What is a Makeover?

What is a Makeover?

When you Google ‘makeover definition’ this is the result:


noun: makeover; plural noun: makeovers; noun: make-over; plural noun: make-overs

a complete transformation or remodeling of something, especially a person’s hairstyle, makeup, or clothes.

And I agree with this definition.

Even if you’ve never had a makeover, or given someone else a makeover, I’m sure we’re all familiar with it, especially given it’s popularity in movies and TV shows. Some of my favorite movies have makeover scenes in them, one of the most iconic ones being Andy’s makeover in The Devil Wears Prada.

Often a makeover involves getting a haircut, coloring, or learning how to style your hair differently, putting on makeup (especially if you don’t frequently wear makeup), and, perhaps most relevant to my blogging niche, wearing different clothes.

What is a Glow Up?

What is a Glow Up?

When you look up what a glow up is, you’ll find this definition from Urban Dictionary:

Glow Up

A Glow Up is a mental, physical, and an emotional transformation for the better. Glow Ups can be both natural or planned. As well as being gradual and permanent, or fast and temporary.

I agree with part of this definition. The part that I don’t agree with is “fast and temporary”. Yes, sometimes glow ups are temporary, however I think that fast transformations fall more under the makeover category, rather than being a true glow up.

It’s also important to note that glow ups aren’t just physical. They involve mental and emotional change as well.

Going back to The Devil Wears Prada, after Andy’s makeover, she does have more confidence and is able to perform her job better, but her mental glow up happens gradually over the movie, as she learns how to excel at her job, what her values are, and how to apply what she’s learned as Miranda’s assistant to her life outside of Runway Magazine. By the end of the movie Andy has confidence, drive, and tenacity (not to mention a good sense of style).

So while glow ups and makeovers are two different things, I find that makeovers are important to the overall glow up process.

How is a makeover important to a glow up?

A makeover is important to a glow up because it allows for sudden outer expression of inner beauty and personality, which can be a big confidence boost. This confidence boost is important because it does take a lot of confidence and determination to make lasting changes to ourselves, especially changes for the better.

Having a makeover done can also lead to a change of routine, and a change of routine can be useful when you’re trying to break or replace old patterns.

I know that every so often, when I’m feeling discouraged about myself, or stuck in a rut, I can give myself a small makeover and I’ll feel refreshed and look at my life with more hope and excitement. Not to mention that my mood is linked to my appearance. When I feel like my mood doesn’t match my appearance I feel less confident in myself and my decisions, and when my appearance looks sloppy or drab, I feel the same way. Clothing is a very important part of my life, because I’ve used it as a mode of self-expression since I entered my teens, and now as a young adult it’s what I’m trying to base my livelihood off of.

Videos to watch for glow ups:

Videos to watch for makeovers:

So, in my opinion, that’s the difference between a makeover and a glow up. If you’re interested in reading posts that can help you on a glow up journey, then subscribe to my blog to receive an email each time I publish a post!

2 thoughts on “Glow Up vs Makeover

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