A Lesson in 1950s Contouring from 1,000 Hints Beauty Magazine


Contouring (concealing) in the 1950s

The article in 1,000 Hints Beauty Magazine on contouring is, I would say, more about concealing in our contemporary makeup culture. The article about rouge touches on using blush as a highlighting/contouring technique. We have these insane contouring techniques now that make this look elementary, but it is still interesting to read.

1950s makeup was much more simple, based on a prettier version of reality, as opposed to a painted on version of beauty ideals. (That sounded snarky. It wasn’t meant to. I have a few issues with some of the popular makeup trends that make us feel like nothing about our real face is beautiful. Ok, maybe I meant it to be a little snarky.)


Full Article

Illusion of Beauty
There’s magic in highlights. Here are new makeup tricks.

There’s a new cosmetic, recently perfected, which will be of interest to every woman with a less-than-perfect face. What makes this new illusionary make-up so marvelous for lines in the face, crow’s feet, dark spots under the eyes, is that it has highlight-gathering capacity. It does for shadows and hollows what skillful Hollywood photographers achieve with carefully placed lighting arrangements.

This product, called Ayer Magic, is a revolutionary new item in make-up. You don’t have to be a make-up artist to use it either–it goes on smoothly and easily over your usual foundation. (Foundation should be used under it to act as a “gripper” for the magic make-up.)

As you already know, light advances, whereas shadows recede. That’s the reason why women with wrinkles have always been warned against too-light face powder: by contrast the wrinkles would appear deeper. Light thrown down into lines makes them seem to disappear.

If you eyes look too deeply set for carefree beauty a swipe of this magic make-up over the eyelids will give the effect of lifting the eyebrow, and of making the eyes seem less deeply set. And if you have dark circles under your eyes, a film of this make-up will erase them completely.

“Corrective make-up” has been done for years by make-up experts, but has been done for years by make-up experts, but has always been too tricky for the average woman. This cosmetic can be used without previous experience. To make a receding chin more prominent, apply to the front curve. It catches the highlights and creates the illusion of a well-shaped chin.

There’s a trick for the too-long nose as well: a dab on the bridge of the nose catches the lights and, by contrast, throws the rest of the nose into disappearing shadow.

A bit of self-analysis will show you where lines and hollows in your face can be spirited away in this easy new way.

This model is young and potentially lovely, but dark blue areas under her eyes give her a tired, older appearance. She applies illusionary make-up from her chin to the corner of her mouth. The first and second areas around nose and mouth have been touched with illusionary make-up. Now she blends it under her eyes where her worst problem lies. Shadows disappear promptly.

Read more from the 1950s vintage beauty guide 1,000 Hints Beauty Magazine:

Related posts

Welcome to the Bobby Pin Blog! I am Lauren Rennells and as a hairstylist, makeup artist, writer, and generally artistic over-achiever, the Bobby Pin Blog is my outlet for thoughts and research about vintage hair and makeup trends and how to recreate them today. Thank you for stopping by!

As an Etsy and Amazon associate I earn from qualifying purchases. As an independent blogger, I link these items because of my own opinions and not because of the commission I may receive.



Recent Posts

Subscribe and
Get More!

Exclusive content...

We won’t blow up your inbox every other day and we never share your email with 3rd parties.

Sign Up and Get More!

Exclusive tips and tutorials...

We won’t blow up your inbox every other day and we never share your email with 3rd parties.