Diary of a Make Up Artist Student – Term 2, Week 1

The break over Easter was soooo needed!  Happy to be back and first up it’s a history lesson on 18th Century Make Up.  What a fascinating period of Make Up for both men and women, yes that’s right men were well into not only pale white make up but also the use of wigs was prevalent amongst Dandy’s and Macaroni’s – men who exceeded ordinary bounds of fashion in terms of clothes, fine dining, and gambling.


Pale white skin represented wealth as these were the people who stayed indoors and did not have to work.  Bright red button lips represented a healthy fun loving spirit which worn together with rouge worn on the lower apples of the cheeks.  Eyebrows were thin with a high arch and coloured black to accentuate the white skin.


This was a period of high experimentation when it came to the ingredients used to produce make-up. Toxic chemicals such as lead and mercury were common and even cocaine was used in some concoctions!  Other ingredients included herbs, flowers, fat, brandy, vegetables, spring water, lemon juice, and crushed strawberries. We learnt that not only was the white make-up painted on but the use of shapes (hearts, stars, etc) was drawn on the face to cover up scars left by small pox.  Some of these shapes also represented political allegiance.


Moving into the 19th century we covered the 20’s: Thin brows, smoky look with burgundy lips.  We moved onto the 30s and found that a more natural and refined look came into fashion.  Learning so much about history and make-up in this course, and what I find really interesting is the use of some of these older styles (looks) coming back into fashion in recent history.


Looking forward to what next week brings!!

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