Friday, March 9, 2012

Fickle Friday: Weirdest/Worst Decade for Makeup (updated)


I'm not feeling the love for much of my makeup lately, so it might be amusing to make fun of it—particularly from a decade I survived: The 80s!

Between the screamingly electric notice-me colors, weird hats, and asymmetrical, gravity-defying hair, I am quite grateful I was only a makeup dabbler in that decade. I was, however, a victim to the fashion, as there was no escape from big shoulder pads, layered polos with pearls and popped collars, designer jeans, Swatch watches, leg warmers, Bermuda bags (with spouting whales!), the oops-this-just-slipped-off-my-shoulder tops, Vuarnet and Ray-ban sunglasses, leggings under tunic tops, and god knows what other atrocities I committed in the name of fashion. Best left forgotten and burn the Polaroids.

When I look at ads from back then, it seems like makeup was all about very strong eyes, cheeks, and lips combined with big BIG hair, and none of it could be big or dramatic enough.





Maybe she's born with it ...


Also in that 80s overdone style, you couldn't go to a salon without being chronically visually assaulted by the artwork of Patrick Nagel.

<gag>

Makeup in the 80s wasn't always neon. I came across this old Maybelline ad that wouldn't look so out of place today. In fact, her look is very similar to what I wear on a daily basis: rosy-pink lips, soft rose blush, a wash of neutral eyeshadow, and eyeliner.

Not too shabby Miss Kim

Unfortunately, Brooke did not represent us well with her moustachioed eyebrows, orange eyeshadow, and persimmon lips, all of which clashed with her skin. And WHAT is up with that Holly Hobbit on the Prairie lace collar?

What has been seen cannot be unseen!

For a modern interpretation of 80s' vivid color, I would look toward Beijing-born photographer Chen Man's work. Beautiful!


Here's a link to some of her magazine covers, which are simply exquisite.

If you were interested in recreating the colorful and bright 80s look now, it wouldn't be that hard.


Here's all you'd need:
  • Primary and/or secondary-colored eyeshadows in blue, purple, orange, pink, and green  
  • Electric-bright cobalt-blue eyeliner  (or black, but the 80s were really all about the blue eyes)
  • Fuchsia pink lipstick
  • Bright pink blush
Easy enough.

Electric blue eyeshadow
Nothing says "I love you 80s" more quickly than blue eyeshadow. Bobbi Brown's new Bluebell eyeshadow would work perfectly.

Hot pink lips
NARS Satin-matte lipstick in Schiap is the right shade of fuchsia.


Rainbow eyeliner
Ultra colorful eyeliner, preferably more than one color at a time, like Urban Decay's 24/7 waterproof liners, which come in a multitude of colors:


Kewpie-doll blush
A bright pink blush, like NARS Gaiety, should do the trick.


For fun, here's a L'Oreal eyeshadow ad from 1983. What's so interesting about this commercial and the print ads is the sponge applicators. How on earth did we manage before makeup brushes went mainstream?? Somehow we did.


UPDATE [3/17] In my YouTube weekly digest, I was quite pleased to see that Lisa Eldridge had done an 80s retro look. Check it out.


What decade for makeup makes you run for the hills?

27 comments:

  1. HAHAHAHAA oh Zuzu you made me LAUGH so hard!!! Boy, did I love my cobalt blue eye shadow and liner and mascara in the 80s!!
    Actually, I don't mind the 80s as much as the 90s. I can't STAND the whole 90s lip. Obvious lip liner with a brown lipstick is just YUCK YUCK. I cringe when I see women still sporting that kind of lip.
    Did you have a spiral perm too? I loved my spiral perm. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. YES I had a perm. Holy mother of gawd never ever again. I looked like Boy George.

      Delete
    2. Remember Air Band Contests? Where you and a bunch of friends get together, and performed on stage as a band with no real instruments? Yeah, me and my friends entered once as The Sex Pistols and lost miserably that time, so the next year we did Culture Club and WON. Guess who was dressed as Boy George? YUP. Me. At least I got $85 for doing that!

      Delete
    3. Hilarious! I'd have loved to see that. Amazingly I never heard of such contests. I was too busy drinkin' and dancin' lol!

      Delete
  2. I don't think any decade can ever compete with the 80's for cringe worthiness. There is just no rival. It never stops making me laugh.....and cry.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I don't know, PP, Tracey has a good point about that brown 90s lip! My introduction to Bobbi Brown makeup was in 1996 at Bloomingdale's and I remember thinking how colorless the entire line looked.

      Delete
  3. Kim Alexis!!! Man, did I ever love her! I'm pretty sure I had a couple of those Blooming Colors quads and one of the blushes from Maybelline, just 'cause Kimmie was in the ads.

    HOWEVAH. I didn't really mind the '80s, even though I usually wore makeup that was too cool-toned for me in those days. My sister finally hauled me to Px to make me STOP wearing fuchsia. But it was fun makeup, and in real life, it often looked good. (The big hair, notsomuch.)

    What I hated was the Nudes ... was it Revlon or Ultima that did those? Beige upon beige upon beige. Not even a Soft Autumn is quite so beige.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. THANK YOU, I kept staring at her face, but I could not for the life of me pull her name out of my memory. For a second I thought it was Carol Alt, but I don't ever remember her being blonde. How could I have forgotten Kim Alexis when I had a major girl crush on her.

      What I neglected to mention in my post was that I actually loved the 80s. Even though looking back I find much of the fashion to be unfortunate, I thought I was a total hawtie back then, and it was probably the most fun decade of my life, since it spanned my teens and 20s.

      I'm right with you on the nudes, though. My skin tone is already in danger of disappearing, so I don't need anything to further wash it out.

      Delete
  4. Let's not forget the 70's....I am a decade older than you Zuzu so I have some not so fond memories of makeup from that era. I recently came across my high school graduation picture and oh, just shoot me now. I have no words for how unflattering the colors and textures were. The only saving grace was I was so young that it wasn't as awful as it would be today. I concur with you on the 80's and the other comment on the 90's. Basically, the last few decades in makeup should be charged with a felony. Wonder what women will be saying about our era 40 years from now!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Were the 70s really that bad? I'll have to go look it up because I don't have much of a frame of reference. My mother and most of the mothers I knew wore only lipstick. I had in mind that the 70s were really natural, and I think the only makeup I might have worn in that decade was mascara, but only at the very end. Actually, now that I think about it, I don't think I wore makeup until at least 1980.

      I look forward to our future opinions regarding what we're doing now. I did think I was cool in the 80s and now when I see pictures of myself with my blue Aziza eyeliner and hot pink cheeks I want to laugh. It seems like there is no one trend in this decade. Or maybe I am just fooling myself because I stick to one basic look and always have. I know there are a lot of EOTDs on blogs sporting some pretty vivid colors in foiled finishes. :)

      Delete
    2. In retrospect, probably not. For sure not as bad as the 80s. It wasn't so much the presentation as the formulation of the products. And the limited color choices. But maybe it's just me. For sure, my pictures from that era don't show anything natural. Not overly garish, just not good colors....for me. Of course at the time, I didn't know any better and most girls my age at that time didn't either. I see things like frosty blue eyeshadow, matte lipstick in a hideous too wrong mauve color, crunch looking mascara, and so forth. I shudder still.

      Delete
    3. That makes complete sense. If my Avon cream shadows in 1976 were any indication of some of the color options ... As for formulas, I can only imagine how bad they were. I still remember stiff and scratchy eyeliner pencils from the 80s into the 90s, and lipsticks were nowhere near as nourishing as they are today. Foundation used to also be pretty hideous, especially for very fair cool people, so it was such a relief for me to discover Prescriptives in 1989. It was like Garanimals for the face, lol.

      Delete
  5. I managed to bypass most of the 80's look because I was more into punk rock and vintage clothes. I wore lots of 60's wiggle dresses, black liner and red lipstick. Although I did get sucked into crimping my hair, yikes!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ooh, I crimped, too. But overall your look sounds much better than the rest of us! My 80s looks suffered from multiple personalities, to say the least. I went from wearing clothes imported from India in 1980 ... to New Wave in '84, with my blonde asymmetrical hair, dark sunglasses, and bright makeup ... to neo-punk in '86, with my darkened hair, kilt with a giant pin, Doc Martens and a PiL tee shirt ... to hurts-so-good gym rat in '88 (we will pretend that phase never happened) ... to Working Woman in 89. And, yes. Yes, I owned a shirt with a floppy bow!

      By 1990 I had found my style, which is a sort of comfortable, semi-shabby prep with edge. Khakis, loafers (sans socks), layerd tees under layers of merino and/or cashmere and/or linen knit sweaters, blazers, white shirts. I still wear a form of that now. ;)

      I think younger women can get away with experimenting like the way we did in the crazy 60s, 70s, and 80s. That's my story, and I'm sticking to it.

      Delete
  6. I hated the 80s, all of it (except maybe the music). I could never find anything I wanted to wear (acid wash denim! huge shoulder pads!), couldn't get a decent haircut, and my makeup sucked. It was a tragic way to spend my 20s. The 70s were so much better, because there was a range-- you could go disco or you could go hippie-natural, or anything in between. The 80s were all about conformity.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Awwww. I loved the 80s, probably because I was clueless about any politics and was one of the lucky people to have a fantastic job after college, but before that I was super busy having a blast with my friends--almost no makeup required. :^)

      Interestingly enough,I got the best haircut of my life in 1984. My friend Gary gave me my first Louise Brooks bob, and it's a style that has suited me well over the last 28 (eek, did I type that?) years. I get different cuts, but I always go back to the bob.

      All I remember from the 70s was Avon cream eyeshadow in a stacked lipstick tube (in green, blue, purple, and tan), polyester, HUGE collars, and rugby socks. Oh, and the ugly wugly braces I had on my teeth so I never smiled.

      Delete
    2. If I had straight hair and a smaller nose, I would live in a Louise Brooks bob. :) It's one of my favorite hairstyles, ever.

      Delete
  7. I agree, the '80s was the worst when it came to makeup! There's a reason that every decade from the 20s to the 90s gets a callback EXCEPT the dirty 80s! I was too young for makeup then but childhood in the 80s was terrific fun. :D

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dirty 80s, lolol. I am going to pretend you didn't mention "childhood" and "the 80s" in the same sentence. ♫ La la la la la la ♪ (I can't hear you.)

      Delete
  8. But...but we were cute back in the 80's!

    (thats my story and I am sticking to it!)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. JoElla, I could give you a big hug. I thought the same exact thing! I felt I was such a woman of the world, not to mention stylish and sexy and hot.

      I have kept a daily journal for 30+ years, and it can be both great fun and cringe-worthy, sphincter-clenching agony to reread the person I used to be. The pages throughout the 80s (my most prolific era!) are full of hubris, but what they really record for posterity is almost 10 years of my extreme bad taste, lol!

      Delete
  9. Great share! I love the 80s but not the best styles. My aunt and mom both had a perm and holly molly!! It was gigantic and horrible!
    I love the makeup tips; I have all exp the bright lipstick...instead I use a soft lip gloss =)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Gaaa, my perm. What has been seen cannot be useen. And I had the stupidity to do it more than once, each time thinking I'd get those pretty banana-curl ringlets instead of a tight-Afro puffball poodle doo.

      Delete
  10. I wish I had all that stuff

    ReplyDelete
  11. I loved the 80s. Best time ever. all new bands, new scenes and new fashion. Love the new romatic scene and the punks.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I loved the 80s, too. So many good memories. I was dining at an oceanside restaurant this past weekend, and they were piping an all-80s playlist throughout the dining room and onto the patio. I wanted to stay all night. :)

      Delete
  12. While I've seen some pretty terrible 80's make-up and fashion (immortalized in photographs), I don't think any of these are all that terrible. In fact I actually like the Maybelline ad.

    ReplyDelete

I love reading your comments. If you have a specific question or request, please feel free to e-mail me directly. Comments that contain advertising links or shameless plugs will not be published.