Isabella Frommelt has grown up around artistic parents who have inspired her to paint, act and film.
Her paintings cover the walls of her home, but one thing she doesn’t love to cover with paint is her face.
I realized that it doesn’t matter what people think about me and my face, as long as I’m happy with it.
Frommelt had included makeup in her morning routine nearly everyday since she was 13 years old. A few months ago, the Hough High School senior decided to wear more eye makeup than usual, and was overwhelmed with compliments from friends and acquaintances throughout the day.
Surprisingly, that disheartened the teen.
“I think coming back to my mom and hearing her tell me I was wearing too much eye makeup made me realize I was never really complimented on my face naturally, because I had never really gone out in public without makeup,” she said. “It just got me thinking ‘why am I wearing makeup? Is it because I actually want to, or is it because I feel the need to?’”
That question motivated Frommelt to do something she had never done. She went one full week without wearing makeup to school. The reactions she received were once again overwhelmingly positive, but this time they inspired.
“I honestly just felt more empowered and confident, and I realized that it doesn’t matter what people think about me and my face, as long as I’m happy with it,” she said. “So then I decided, there are a lot of girls who struggle with not being able to go out in public with a bare face and just embrace what they look like.”
To help conquer the fear Frommelt had noticed girls her age have of going bare-faced, she decided to start a no-makeup week at Hough High. She would again go an entire week without makeup, but this time, with a group of more than 50 girls. Frommelt reached out to her female followers on social media to spread the word about the upcoming week, and let them know the purpose of no makeup week.
In one Instagram post, she wrote, “I love putting on makeup but sometimes I need a reality check and just be happy with what I’m like without makeup. Please vlog on your phone and/or take pictures and text it to me or email where I will put it on my websites blog if you want to participate. Not only is this to make you feel good about yourself but others who may struggle to go without makeup so we can all support each other with confidence and natural beauty.”
During the first week of February, Frommelt and more than 50 girls from Hough High in Cornelius and surrounding schools participated in no makeup week. Because of the impact and high turnout, Frommelt decided to make a 15-minute documentary about the week, to inspire and encourage other girls.
She set up a plain white sheet in her bedroom, and used a camera she had received for Christmas to document participants’ experiences during the week. Since posting the documentary on YouTube, it has received nearly 500 views.
Frommelt’s mother, Mayra, fully supports her daughter’s initiative.
“It almost makes you cry because some of them say, ‘I feel confident. I feel good. I never thought I would go without makeup,’” Maya Frommelt said about the documentary. “That’s a really good feeling. If you can change one person’s life, that’s really what all of this is about.”
After graduation this June, Isabella plans to attend Catawba College on a full scholarship. There, she will double major in communications and marketing to pursue a career in film.
Though Frommelt is moving on from Hough High, she has no plans to leave behind no-makeup week. Since her acceptance, she has met with a counselor at the college who encouraged her plans to continue no-makeup week.
Charlotte Catholic High School
4A state champions: Charlotte Catholic varsity men’s basketball team won the 4A North Carolina state title on March 12. The Cougars defeated Cary High School in the championship game at the Dean Smith Center in Chapel Hill. Charlotte Catholic High School is the first 4A school in N.C. to win both a football and basketball championship in the same year since 1958, when Rocky Mount High School did the same.
South Charlotte Middle School
President’s Volunteer Service Award: The Prudential Spirit of Community Awards Program recently awarded South Charlotte Middle eighth-grader, Juliana Oringel the President’s Volunteer Service Award.
Oringel was given the award for her volunteer work with the Jewish Community Center of Temple Israel and Bright Blessings, a nonprofit organization in Matthews that helps homeless and impoverished children in the greater Charlotte area.
Oringel volunteers at the Jewish Community Center up to four hours each week assisting the center’s kindergarten teacher and helping coordinate youth field trips. At Bright Blessings, she helps provide birthday celebrations at homeless shelters, housing facilities and domestic violence safe houses. The award was given to her on behalf of President Barack Obama.
Olympic High School
Sequoia tree planting: Students in Paul Greenleaf’s biology class at Olympic High School recently had the opportunity to plant sequoia trees, also known as redwoods on the school’s property.
Greenleaf reached out to David Milarch, a nurseryman in California to see if he would donate clones of ancient sequoias. Milarch agreed, and with the help of local organizations, Greenleaf and his students prepped the school’s soil and planted the trees. Through the process, students have learned about things like soil pH and tree cells. Once the trees are established, they are expected to grow up to 10 feet per year.
Crown Point Elementary
Soccer event: The Crown Point Elementary School PTA will host a SOAR Night soccer community event, 5:30-7:30 p.m. April 22 at the lower athletic field next to the school.
Two teams from the SOAR youth soccer sports program at Christ Covenant Church in Matthews will compete in a game, featuring young players from the Matthews area. At halftime of the game, students and staff from Crown Point Elementary will compete in a fun soccer event.
There is no admission charge. Crown Point Elementary is at 3335 Sam Newell Road in Matthews.
Sara Carson is a freelance writer: firstname.lastname@example.org.