Monday, January 04, 2016

The inevitable backlash, or, is it time for a 70s makeup revival?

If you watch YouTube beauty gurus, you might be forgiven for thinking we were living in a sixties revival. Not the Haight Ashbury, peace, love, and patchouli 60s. The Carnaby Street dolly bird Yardley 60s--the sixties of heavy foundation, contour, winged eyeliner, false lashes, sculpted eye shadow, filled brows, and nude lips.

On Jean Shrimpton, this look is beautiful, isn't it?

The thing is, as in many other breathtaking and iconic beauty images, this look is beautifully suited for still photography, less so for real life. That's what we all need to keep in mind. Youtube gurus and beauty bloggers and Instagrammers and Pinteresters are playing to the camera. In real, 3-D natural lighting, contour and highlighting are far less effective. A tilt of the head and you become aware of the dark shading under the cheekbones and the pearly powder on top of them.

For another thing, this look would take about 45 minutes to achieve (not counting the hair!)

So in Into the Gloss, I was interested to see that a makeup artist was advocating a return to a more 70s aesthetic for a recent shoot.

I'm really into washes of color on the eyes at the moment, and I wanted these looks to work for daytime. Colorful hues on the eyes, natural brows, naturally elongated lashes, freckles, skin that glows, and pretty lips is the direction I'm thinking in. And instead of contour, I feel that blush needs to make a comeback again.
Can this be the end of cat eyeliner, overlined lips, foundation spackled on every square inch of skin, Instagram brows, and eyes sculpted with six shades of shadow?

I hope so, because one of the young women making smoothies at my gym is starting to show up in false lashes every day. Meanwhile, I'm at the gym, so I'm wearing no makeup whatsoever.

There she is, a flawless glamazon, and there I am, a sweat hog. I'm telling you, it's getting demoralizing.


  1. You should see my niece - she's got a youtube channel and wears an enormous amount of makeup. She walks around looking a bit like a mannequin.

  2. With all that caked on makeup the young ones wear ..... I am buying shares in industrial strength Cleansers!!!! Oh .... and pimple cream :)


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