One thing I think the article seems to grasp (that many do not) is that some people do not use makeup, clothing, etc, just to look "pretty" or to enhance their appearance to be more attractive to others. They may use it to self-express, to create an interesting aesthetic, to send a message about themselves & other reasons. Does this mean they are not influenced at all by beauty ideals in the process? No, but it doesn't change their main intent.
I just get sick of the idea that anything a woman does to her appearance is an effort to be sexy or beautiful. These things can simply be fun for some people. Applying makeup is fun. Putting outfits together is fun. There's nothing more shallow about this than many, many hobbies other people spend time & money on. Some people probably do the fake, garish look because it's fun to them. As the article notes, they aren't looking to fool anyone, but that also doesn't necessarily mean they ask you to embrace fakeness as the beauty standard or even a beauty standard. Instead, you can just accept that people approach their appearances differently, with different motives, a different sense of aesthetics, and different levels of seriousness.
And then of course, the dichotomy of faux-natural and obviously fake does not exist. I personally don't go for the natural look nor some garishly fake trampy look. I don't even think I'm in between; just something else altogether. To use these things ONLY to enhance the appearance is dull to me; I use makeup & clothes & accessories because they are fun to play with. I like to create different looks which don't necessarily have anything to do with being more attractive. It's like creating a physical manifestation of your inner self and all its different aspects via colors, silhouettes, textures, etc. My natural physical self is what genetics gave me, but what the look I create is what I choose. It doesn't mean I am completely unaffected by external ideas, but that doesn't mean I'm brainlessly following trends either.
And I think that's what the article is saying; can WE as women choose to look how we want & not have to play by these rules about what is tasteful, what is acceptably fake & what is too much, etc....? Trading one narrow (and impossible) beauty standard in for another is not liberating.