Look around you. Look at each person’s style, and try to define the 2013 look. Not so easy, is it? When we think of the 1920’s, we think “flapper” and “newsboy”. The 60s had their definitive mod and hippie styles. And the 80s was all about punk and experimental looks. But what about the 2010’s? Take a walk down any New York street, and you see styles that range from standard lumberjack shirts and jeans to prim floral numbers to rainbow-hair and 6” creepers- all in the mainstream. All of these looks may seem very now, but look at each piece, they’re all borrowed from past eras. Every single one.
Nothing seems cohesive or inventive enough these days to be labeled the 2010’s look. If anything, we should call it the Chameleon Era; ever-borrowed and ever-changing. I mean, I’m pretty sure the term “micro-trend” was invented after the millennium because no one can seem to commit to a trend any longer than a week. I blame the internet and our constant need to stand out online. But I digress…
With looks from fashionista Miroslava Duma and rainbow-coiffed model Chloe Norgaard being just as appealing to the mainstream as those by Jessica Alba and Katie Holmes, taking chances with your wardrobe has never been easier. And the risks don’t stop at your wardrobe; wearable makeup today goes from one end of the spectrum to the other. Smoky, metallic, colorful and bare eyes: all acceptable right now. Lips run the gamut from glossy nude to bright red to matte blue.
The 2010’s are all about reinventing past looks. No matter what you do in fashion and beauty today, you’re inevitably borrowing from past styles. The way to make it now and not costume-y? Mix eras in one look. Minimalize it- or go to the other end of the spectrum and experiment away! What era inspires you in your everyday makeup look?
The Late 1700s-1800s: Bouffants, Rosy Cheeks and Bare Eyes
Whether you’re looking towards the Victorian era for inspiration or taking it back to the 1700’s for a Marie Antoinette feel, you can interpret these looks into makeup that’s wearable in 2013. An easy way to do this? Use a hot pink blush on the apple of the cheek, light to bare eyeshadow sans mascara and some medium to hot pink lips (or try some Limecrime hues. The pale blue “No She Didn’t” shade looks divine with this style.).
The 1920’s: Dark on Dark on Dark
Watch a Buster Keaton film- or any silent film from the 20s for that matter- and you’re bound to envy the stark beauty of the starlets of the day. The downturned thin brows, the smoky eyes, the dark lips- it was all very sultry and not-so-subtle. To emulate a modern-day Louise Brooks, you have to pay attention to those brows. Go a shade darker than your normal brow and make them super sculpted and as straight across as you can. Add a smoky eye on upper and lower lid, and stay inside your natural lip line (creating a smaller lip) with a dark color. No blush required.
The 1940’s and 1950’s: Accent Everything
The 40’s and 50’s are heavily influencing gals right now. Hello, peplums! Hello, kitten heels! The makeup of the era played up every feature of the face. In the 40’s women did away with the pencil-thin brow and went bold and arched, and the lips were never nude. I notice a lot of people in the beauty industry clumping the 40’s and 50’s makeup together, but if you put stars like Ingrid Bergman and Marilyn Monroe side-by-side, you can see the obvious housewife-to-siren leap makeup took between decades.
In the 50’s the hair was let down a little more and the makeup got a little more va-va-voom (Think Bette Davis in All About Eve): voluptuous lips, thick arched brows, huge lashes and sculpted cheeks. We can go pretty literal with this makeup style today, and by throwing it on with some jeans, make it 2013 worthy. If you want to change it up a bit, play with color: the combo of bright coral lips and lavender eyeshadow is perfect for spring.
The 1960’s: Lash Out
Nude/pink lips and mod lashes! And the bottom lashes are just as important here. My favorite mascara trick a la 1960: caking it on and before it dries fully, take tweezers and clump several lashes together in sections and hold for 5 seconds until they stick. Voila! Twiggy lashes with no falsies. I love the in-a-hurry drawn-on bottom lashes too. Haphazard chic!
The 1970’s: Heavy (on) Metal
Aside from the women opting for zero makeup and Gunne Sax dresses, the 70s represented a revolution in the makeup and fashion worlds. Huge ascot ties and ruffle bibs, wide-legged pants, disco jumpsuits, maxi dresses; The 70’s love exaggerated proportions in their outfits. And the makeup followed suit. Metallic shadows and lips complemented metallic clothing, and purple and orange hues were all over the face.
The 1980’s: Too Much is Not Enough
This is where the strong brow went sky high. Hell, this is where every makeup element went sky high! When David Bowie and Madonna are plastered everywhere, you sort of feel guilty if you don’t take chances with your own look. Wearing the 80s looks in 2013: use brighter-than-bright eyeshadow, or if using a darker shade, take it from the lid all the way to the brow. Blush should always be there, contouring the cheek until you look like you may have skipped a few meals. Lips can be any shade you want, but whatever you do don’t you go ignoring them! Bowie’s watching you.
The 1990’s: All About Gwen
Either you went grunge with no makeup and unwashed hair, or you threw on a metallic cropped halter, rollerskates, an awful mauve/brown lipliner and plucked your brows until there were no more. Or you were Gwen Stefani. Plus, you weren’t wearing a bra. Don’t lie! As for 90s makeup cues: Bow down to the queen and only look to Gwen Stefani for makeup inspiration. Or pick up a book by Kevyn Aucoin (If you don’t know who this is, slap yourself). Doing anything else would be an injustice to the makeup world.
With a song called “Thrift Shop” topping the charts, it may just be that the economy is to blame for our chameleon style, and makeup always follows in line; We make the most of what we’ve got. Maybe decades from now— when people wear only carbon-fiber uniforms— the 2010’s will be referred to as the Thriftorian Era (aka- the 2nd Depression). They’ll feel sorry for us in our 2nd-hand outfits, but we’ll look back and remember just how awesome we were.
By Whitney S. Williams
Photography by Whitney S. Williams
Styling: Whitney, Makeup Artist: Katherine Thrower, Hair/Assist: Jada Nave