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Vintage-Inspired Makeup for Redheads

By: Liz Washer

Feeling inspired by all the vintage looks on the red carpet lately? Here are some tips for finding the colors, styles, and sass to rock your very own vintage red look!

1. Build your foundation. Back in the day, screen starlets wore quite a heavy base for the cameras. Happily, in the age of high-definition, the formulas available to us are more natural looking and quite a bit less cakey. If you want that vintage matte look, apply enough cream or liquid foundation to achieve an even tone (using a lighter hand on areas where you want fabulous features – like freckles – to shine through), and then use a puff to set your foundation with a loose translucent powder (nothing glittery or shimmery). This will absorb oils from the foundation and/or your skin, leaving a satin canvas. Be sure to apply blush and a bit of highlight to your cheekbones, to keep the look from becoming too flat.

2. The perfect pout. Let it never be said that redheads cannot wear red lipstick! There are countless shades out there and as many ways to wear them as you like. I love to use warmer reds on redheads to complement their freckles and the golden tones in their skin – you might find that a poppy or coral based red is more wearable than a true-blue fire engine shade. If you’re new to rocking red lips, you can start by patting on the color with a finger, to achieve a stained effect. If you want a defined lip, start by filling in your lip with a matching pencil and then apply lipstick carefully with a brush. You can use an angled brush to apply concealer around the edges of your lip.

3. Draw the line. If you choose the 40s, 50s, or 60s as your inspiration, it’s all about the perfect crisp eye line. If you’re new to doing a defined eyeline, start with an angled brush and a matte eyeshadow so you can sketch out the look before committing to it. If you’re creating a cateye shape, be sure to draw the wing with your eyes open, and then connect it to the lashline – otherwise you may create a shape that only looks good when your eyes are downcast. Steadying your elbow on a counter when working can help with precision, and you can also do your eyeliner first to allow you to clean up any mistakes before you do the rest of your eye makeup.


Photo Credit: Kara Kochalko,  © How to be a Redhead