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Recommendations for a 50s look makeover

Discussion in 'Beauty' started by angeljenny, Feb 8, 2011.

  1. angeljenny

    angeljenny A-List Customer


    I am on a mission to improve how I look as I really don't make enough of an effort (or any effort at all!) the majority of the time.

    I have posted in the Powder Room about my lack of fashion skills but if I posted a couple of photographs here would anyone be able to give me some advice? This forum seems to be full of experts!

    I love the 1950's look but it is a BIG step up from the look I have now.

    I'm not really sure what suits me or what my colouring is!? Plus my hair needs a cut!

    I finally feel like I deserve to make an effort after years of no confidence, total shyness and trying to blend into the background. Not totally there yet but at least I can talk to people without blushing bright red!
  2. angeljenny

    angeljenny A-List Customer

    Figured out how to post photos! Not a technical person. Please ignore the state / over pinkness of the room!

    Okay dokay. In these two photos I have probably made slightly more effort than usual. :eek:

    Makeup = foundation, powder, blusher, mascara, deep pink lip stain and I think eye liner.

    Hair = basically my routine is to brush my hair then wash it on an evening. I don't always comb it and it is usually very nearly dry when I go to sleep. Next morning I brush it and put some smoothing products through it. And that's it! I don't think I have any products in my hair in these photos.



    Just so blah! I am one of those people who is plain and not all that noticeable.

    Any advice welcome on how to fix and improve myself! I want to look more polished and sort of 50's.
  3. I don't know if my sort is allowed to post here, but I'll throw caution to the wind and dodge any flying handbags.

    I'm not an expert on women's fashion by any means, but depending on what is available in your area I wouldn't think a good, basic 1950s look would be all that hard to accomplish. Depending on the style you're going for I would do a Google image search for things like rockabilly and psychobilly, since those looks usually require less actual vintage items and are easier to put together while you're starting out.
    As for hair, any good stylist should be able to help you out. Just bring in a few photos of hair styles that you like and let them know what look and era you're aiming for. They should be able to not only help you choose a design that fits your facial structure, but show you how to easily replicate the 'do when you get home. If you don't already know how to do makeup, any high-end makeup shop should offer consultations and tutorials on how to achieve your desired look (usually for free...at least around here).
    Hope some of this helps, and isn't too ridiculously obvious! You've got lovely, classic features, you should have no problem pulling of a great new style. Good luck with the makeover! :D
  4. Amy Jeanne

    Amy Jeanne Call Me a Cab

    I would go for "Bettie" bangs and a ponytail for hair. It's not overly-complicated to achieve nor is it too "flashy" for someone easing into the look. If you think Bettie bangs are too bold to start try longer bangs instead (to get used to it).

    I tend to go over the top with makeup and clothing so I'll let someone who knows how to be subtle give you advice there lol
  5. You don't look plain to me. I think you resemble Kate Winslet actually and she's beautiful in my eyes :)
    As far as advice, I think Amy Jeanne is right about the hair style. It's easy and would give you the look you're going for without much effort at all. Maybe a pageboy and bettie bangs?
  6. Gracie Lee

    Gracie Lee A-List Customer

    I'll go against the grain. I think you would look lovely less an inch or two of length, and I'm not a big fan of Bettie bangs personally, mostly because several of my friends who have had them got sick of them very quickly and had a hard time working with them until they grew out. Maybe a smooth 50s bob, with some volume and movement. It would only take 5 minutes or so each morning with a curling iron to turn your ends under. You'd still have enough length to pull the top half back on days you wanted it out of your face, and you could always set the front and put the back into a snood or scarf for a change. I'm totally envious of your eyebrows - such a perfect shape! And I second the Kate Winslet resemblance :)
  7. Tatum

    Tatum Practically Family

    I'm with Gracie here, I have a tough time with bangs. But I agree that you aren't plain, you have a beautiful face and I would kill for your eyebrows. (I generally have eyebrow envy as I have almost none, hehe.) If you want to keep your length, I would get some curl in there and do a high ponytail, brushing it into a coiled mass (not sure how to explain and I don't have a pic for reference, but I do it with failed sets all the time...I will find one for you as I read how nondescript that sounds) with maybe a little pomp. Bouncy ponytails are so cute.

    By the way, I love that skirt! ;)
  8. HepKitty

    HepKitty One Too Many

    I actually started a search on 50s hairstyles because I'm almost done with a rockabilly dress and need ideas for my hair. It's really long but I don't want to cut it yet, until I can take off 10 inches and have enough left to play with. Here is a link with a lot of embedded youtube tutorials, some everyday type stuff others more elaborate


    Here is another link


    And another, though the Bettie bangs aren't for everyone. I would look terrible with them

  9. Amy Jeanne

    Amy Jeanne Call Me a Cab

    Bangs are a bit of a commitment, though I think everyone who has them looks great. Maybe I have a "thing" for them, but I think people look better with them. I have them right now, but I grow them out every now and again. They really aren't that hard to work with if you want to go bang-less one day. I have no problem pushing mine back for a more 1930s look. I also have no issues incorporating them into fingerwaves. That's what gel is for lol

    The thing is -- do what YOU like. Don't take our advice because it will all be contradictory and you won't know where to begin. I started the vintage thing before Internet forums and studied photographs and movies to get a feel for what I liked best. I suggest you do the same.
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2011
  10. Tifa

    Tifa Familiar Face

    I agree with the bettie bangs and a ponytail, but for some (including my hair, I needed to wet the bangs and blow dry it every morning in order to make it look OK) it's more work.

    This picture of Gwen Stefani is a easy/fast do
    you could make a roll like her or just tease the hair on top and make a little pomp so it's not completely slick back.
    Curl it in the back is another step.
    Adding a satin ribbon or a hair flower would make it cute and is super fast.

    Red lipstick is instant glamor, try bolder and bolder reds and pink as you get more used to it.
  11. angeljenny

    angeljenny A-List Customer

    Thank you!

    I am so glad that my eyebrows look ok as just before I took the photographs I completely re-did them. They were thicker and straight and I didn't like them so I thinned them and put an arch in.

    Not sure about the Bettie Page bangs - I have seen them on other people in photographs and they looked lovely - I'm just not sure they are for me!

    I have been browsing on the internet and I quite like:





    But I'm not sure how practical they would be or even what I would ask for in the hairdressers! Plus I would need rollers of some description too.
  12. RodeoRose

    RodeoRose A-List Customer

    I'm with Gracie Lee on the no-bangs advice... they're pretty bold. Also, when I had my Bettie bangs in highschool I had to curl them *every* morning or they looked super odd.
    The looks you like are actually pretty straightforward; check out the pincurling thread... you just need bobby pins, setting lotion, and a little free time before bed to get those nice bouncy curls a la Liz or Marilyn. A middy-style cut (there's a thread on that, too, around here) will help get the right shape. Those styles are also pretty universally flattering, I would say-- a very nice choice!
  13. Amy Jeanne

    Amy Jeanne Call Me a Cab

    Those hairdos are easy to achieve.

    You'll need a layered haircut.

    Then while your hair is wet, part it to the side and do pincurls on yourself. Sleep in them. In the morning take them out and brush your hair. Don't panic if it's frizzy -- it will be. You'll have to brush quite a bit to get them smooth. Don't expect perfection on the first few tries, either. Practice makes perfect.

    An upright pincurl above your forehead will give you that "swoop" right there! At least, it does for me!! :D
  14. angeljenny

    angeljenny A-List Customer

    Just realised that all those hair styles look the same! Not sure how long the hair is without the curls in it but I do like that style a lot.

    I am due (way over due!!) a hair cut so will look for the threads in question and work out what I am asking for!
  15. Kiri

    Kiri One of the Regulars

    Those are about the looks I get with my hair. I just do 4 pincurls on each side just before I go to sleep (usually in bed) then tie a scarf on and in the morning just lightly brush through with my fingers. Since I don't use any product I find it doesn't require brushing like it did when I used hairspray.
    I'll try to get a picture maybe tonight or tomorrow. :)
  16. LinaSofia

    LinaSofia A-List Customer

    You've had some great advice here, but just to add my own little advice to the list ... think about the silhouette of the 50s and apply it to all your clothing choices, that way you can look 50s without necessarily having that many vintage pieces to start off with. The most important things to remember are:

    1. emphasise the waist - skirts need to sit at the natural waistline, not at the hip as modern clothing does. Look for high waisted skirts OR if you can't find any, buy skirts that are a size or two too small and then wear them at your natural waist (slimmest part above belly button), providing they don't become too short that way. Dresses should be cinched in at the waist too, you can do this with a nice waist belt if your dress isn't cut this way.

    2. circle skirts! Look for nice wide swing skirts and dresses. Ebay is a great resource for cheap repro or vintage items!

    3. pencil skirts - remember they need to sit at the natural waist and preferably hit just below knee-length (never above knee or you'll look like an 80s throwback :D). There are lots of 50s style pencil skirts on the high street at the moment!

    4. blouses, cardigans, sweaters and jackets should be short and end at the waist line, not at the hip! A trick, if you have a modern cardigan that is longer is to button it half way down, then tie the two sides together at the waist!

    5. have fun! play around with different looks to see what you feel comfortable in and don't worry about being perfect all the time :)

    ps. I agree with everyone else, you're not plain! And you're gonna look amazing when you find your style and feel good about yourself!

    x Lina
  17. I agree with Tatum - eyebrow envy!!!

    Also with the other ladies - you are not plain at all, you are a very pretty girl.

    Great advice from all the other ladies.

    Just a couple of things, matching lippie and nail polish can look good. It can pull an outfit together and make it look quite fifties.

    Same with accessories, sometimes matching the colour of shoes and bag, or belt and shoes perhaps.

  18. angeljenny

    angeljenny A-List Customer

    The full skirt / tiny waist silhouette is something that I love! So feminine.

    I really like to match accessories and to be all co-ordinated. I hadn't thought of matching my nails and lips but I like the idea!

    The Vintage Hairstyling book I ordered arrived yesterday so this morning I have my hair in rollers and am attempting to do my makeup. Not sure how it will turn out. I don't think a work morning was the ideal time to try - my arms are aching!

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