Vintage Glam: Makeup Through The Years!


Makeup artist Hira Khan takes us on a trip down memory lane as she highlights the journey of makeup trends through the years.

Makeup is a form of art that evolves everyday. Who knows, maybe the recent craze of strobing, highlighting, contouring and color correcting has been present since history. The only difference is that trends have evolved and adapted with time, and with the plethora of cosmetics available to us, it’s easier for every girl to get her makeup on point.



A pale powdered face, kohled vampy eye shadows, smaller lips with emphasis on the cupids bow and circular blush on (to make the face appear rounder) was the makeup game back in the 20s. There was no concept of having thicker brows in fact there was a trend of having the brows downward towards the temples. Some famous makeup brands from the 1920s are Trejur, Mac Factor, Coty, Rubinstein, Arden, Bonnie Bell, Charles of Ritz, Kissproof,  Tangee Lipsticks and Peggy Sage. While some may seem unheard of now, these classic brands were a game changer back in a time of flirtatious flapper girls.


The Hollywood influence had taken over and women’s makeup had started getting more refined. Pencil thin eyesbrows were drawn (literally drawn sometimes women had their original eyebrows shaved off to draw the shape they desire), hues of greens, blues and pink for the eyes, fuller lips and triangular blush placement with a little bit of contouring had took over women’s faces. Popular lip colors were raspberry reds and maroons inspired by the Hollywood stars of that era. The waterproof mascara was introduced and lipsticks sales shooted high with all the magazines covers being invaded by a pouted face.


Bolder arched eye brows had started taking over and women were inclined towards bolder and fuller lips. Reds and oranges were also a popular color for the lips and rose colored blush ons were the fad. Some notable makeup brands from that era as Estee Lauder, Jacqueline, Hazel Bishop and Orlane.

The era of famous beauty icons such as Marilyn Monroe and Audrey Hepburn. The trend of the bolder arched brows still prevailed thanks to Audrey Hepburn for the inspiration.  But the new craze was the winged liner and for the lips a smiled effect (Inspired by Marilyn Monroe).
Biotherm, Clarins and Shiseido were emerging brands from that era, that seem to still stand the test of time.

The “retro” period where the lips were kept paler and the eyes had to be the focus. This was the first time the idea of a cut crease came into being, instead of a winged liner a liner was applied on the lash line as well as the crease line. Lashes were the focus so there were upper and lower lashes both to create that retro flapper effect. Blue grey and white were popular hues for the eyes. For the lips it was towards the nude side with very light pinks being popular. It was an era of change right before the hippies took trends into their own hands!


Stay tuned for Part II of my breakdown of makeup trends and icons through the decades.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *