Friday, 27 April 2012

The Art of Lipstick

Norman Rockwell Little Girl with Lipstick, 1922, for American Magazine

Christopher Wood Girl with Lipstick, 1925 
Francisco Gras Lipstick, 1928

Claes Oldenburg Lipstick in Picadilly Circus, 1966

Claes Oldenburg Lipstick (Ascending) on Caterpillar Tracks, 1969 -1974

Gong Lilong Lipstick from Town, 1998

Edward Povey, 2011

Natalie Irish 

Saturday, 21 April 2012

The Blues

Dixor, 1930

Elizabeth Arden, 1940

Avon, 1945

Benefit, 1999

Revlon, 1982

Clairol, 1951

Bourjois, 1943

Dorothy Gray, 1951

Elizabeth Arden, 1945

Dorothy Gray, 1949

Helena Rubinstein, 1942

John Frieda, 2008

Kotex, 1966

Lentheric, 1947

Loving Care, 1973

Marie Earle, 1947

Maybelline, 1952

Maybelline, 1994

Max Factor, 1961

Nivea, 1986

Kathleen Mary Quinlan, 1944

Revlon, 1950

Max Factor, 1961

Revlon, 1961

Helena Rubinstein, 1950

Schiaparelli, 1945

Monday, 16 April 2012

The 1950's Look

"Personally I l think there's nothing like starting off the day nicely made-up. It takes only a few minutes- but these minutes become increasingly hard to find later in the morning and soon you've passed half your day without glamour!" 
Woman's Companion, October 1958

Although, as at any time, the daily habits of women varied throughout the decade and between individuals the 1950's saw a revolution in the amount of products available and the way that women were using them. Like many other consumer industries, especially in America, the cosmetic industry grew after the end of World War Two.

According to Woman's Weekly a well groomed lady in the early 1950s would use the follow products - as a bare minimum - powder base, powder, rouge, lipstick, skin food, hand cream or lotion, talcum powder, brilliantine and a hair tonic.

A typical routine, as advised by the ever helpful magazines, would start with well cleansed, bare skin followed by the application of a base - which could come in cream (tinted or un-tinted), liquid or powder.

Helena Rubinstein, 1953
Max Factor, 1953

Pan-Cake, introduced by Max Factor in 1938, was one of the great successes in the 1950s with over ten million cakes sold in the year 1953 alone.

Max Factor, 1954

Revlon, 1955

Max Factor, 1959

Max Factor, 1957

"To get foundation really smooth, apply it with a spatula, dabbing specks lightly all over your face, blend it with a little feathering strokes of your fingers." 
- Women's Realm

The ideal base would be matte and uniform and products that gave this finished look were much in demand.

Once your skin was smooth and flawless a cream rouge, ideally used for contouring rather than to add colour, would typically be used followed by a powder to set the face.

Following this it was time to add the real star of the show, at least in the early 1950s, the lips.

Cutex, 1953
Helena Rubinstein, 1951

Revlon, 1952

Peggy Sage, 1952

Dorothy Gray, 1958

Helena Rubinstein, 1956

Revlon, 1957

Helena Rubinstein, 1958

One thing that really set the 1950's apart from the previous decade was a focus on the eyes - not just the darkenening of eyelashes - but lining the eyes. This revolution in make-up, dating really from 1949-50, lead to market being flooded with products and innovations to take advantage of this - including mascara, eye shadows, lining pencils and a new designed, more effective, eyelash curler from Kurlash.

Maybelline, 1954

With this flood of new products women needed to be taught how to achieve the effects promised in the adverts and many companies - such as Elizabeth Arden and Helena Rubinstein - used their salons as classrooms. 

Kurlash, 1956
"You tilt your head backwards for brushing the upper lashes, forwards when you do the lower ones. Try it next time you apply your mascara. It brings the lashes away from the surrounding skin and enables you to reach them more easily." 
 - Woman's Weekly, March 1959

Helena Rubinstein, 1958
In 1957 the Mascara-Matic was introduced to the market by Helena Rubinstein. Its special innovation was that it was the first mascara to feature a wand instead of the normal brush.

Dorothy Gray, 1959
Maybelline, 1959
With eye-shadow more popular than ever before manufacturers launched collections focusing on  new colours. Although initially in the early years of the decade colours remained quite conservative by the mid 1950's manufacturers got the chance to really experiment. Shades from Revlon in the mid 50's included Green Frost, Blue Ice, Pistachio and Gold.

Eye shadows could come in cream, stick or liquid.

Kurlash, 1959
Nails still were typically polished and there were lots of colours for the fashionable woman to chose from.

Cutex, 1950
Lipstick and nail polish still should match and most shades came in both.

Elizabeth Arden, 1958
If you are based in or around Norwich and want some tips on getting the 50's look then please join myself and the Historical Sauces in one of our mini make-up master-classes. The next class will be on Sunday 22nd April 2012 and we will be concentrating on getting the perfect pout as well as mastering those 50's eye-liner flicks. More information via our website.

We will also be holding an event after the master-class - our "Sip and Shop" with cocktails, music and vintage goodies to purchase.
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