The Beauty Community: Makeup through the decades – The Rotunda




Makeup has been a woman’s saving grace for years as a form of expression and art. Even before the 1900s, makeup has been used for weddings, social events and rituals across several religions, cultures and countries. But in the United States, as the 1920s rolled around, makeup had turned identities into famous icons – these are their trends throughout the decades. 

The 50s brought the high-coverage foundation, dramatic layers of mascara were coated for a more voluminous finish and cat-eye smoky looks were a trend during the 50s, thanks to classic actresses like Marilyn Monroe, who was a famous movie star of the times. Monroe brought the trend of red lips and drawn-on classic beauty marks. A term for this look was the “pin-up girl” – typical and effortless for women of the time. 


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Marilyn Monroe in the 1950s


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Twiggy, a famous model, was an icon in the 60s. She inspired looks like her heavy mascara on both the bottom and top lashes. Foundation was used to highlight and bring shine back, while carved out eye-creases with shadows became a new art trend in the 60s. Red lips in the 50s were replaced by a more nude colored lip. 


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Carved out creases and bold lashes in the 1960s


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The 70s kept the natural look from the 60s, with less foundation and more focus on tinted moisturizers and concealers. Shimmery eyeshadows were in with heavy mascara, while eyebrows were kept all natural. False eyelashes also became on-trend in the 70s, giving a thick lash appearance. Red lips were still not in-trend; instead, clear lip glosses and a light pink look became the next desirable thing. 


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The 1970s brought glossy lips and a classic complexion


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The 1980s have to be the most drastic of all decades. Concealers and foundations were brought back after twenty years, blush as well but in an arrange of colors from bright pink to orange. Eyeshadows also ranged from neon purples, yellows and oranges. Thicker eyelashes and eyeliner were also on-trend, while the classic red lips came back with a line of new colors, like a muted mauve and cinnamon orange. 

The end of the 90s brought on new trends of tanned celebs and over lined, bold lips. Monochrome styles were introduced by matching shadows, blush and lipstick shades all together to create iridescent pigments. It was a loud statement with makeup during the 2000s to push the boundaries of mixing products together.  

And now, our time in the 21st century. Bold, matte shades became a thing with less exaggerated lined lips. Winged eyeliner has been on its peak with dramatic eyelashes created with falsies. A thicker, defined brow – not all that natural, but bolder than any other decade. Chiseling facial features, known as contouring, became our next trend, along with gleaming highlighters and smoked out creases on our eyes for an overall glamorous look.


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Current trends call for bold lips and bold eyebrows


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