The Halloween Beauty Round-Up: Retro Barbie

Imitate the most fashionable doll of all-time, but with the bonus of moveable limbs!

Oct 26, 2011 at 1:00pm | Leave a comment

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Barbie is my ultimate style icon. You could maybe even say she's my ultimate life icon, too. She is fashionable and fabulous, and she's lived a pretty amazing life. Who else can say that they've been a fashion designer, a veterinarian, and an astronaut (just to name a few) in their life span? I'm going to go with BASICALLY NO ONE. Except Barbie! I know people get all up in arms saying she's a bad role model for little girls, but at least she has career(s!), unlike those bratty Bratz. I mean, get real!

Anyway, arguments about her merit as a feminist icon aside, Barbie is super-stylish and easily recognizable to the masses. I chose to imitate her original 1959 look for this tutorial because I think it's pretty gorgeous. I just wish they'd kept Babs pouty instead of giving her that cheesy grin in the 70s. Oh well, we'll always have the fond memories of bitch-faced Barbie and her amazing wig collection ...

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That Heavy Late 50s Make-Up ...

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Step one for the eyes was to apply a lid primer, then a dark denim-y shade of blue along the upper lashline and mid-way on the lid, and fan it out slightly at the outer corners into a cat-eye shape. The shade I'm wearing is a mixture of a few different blues, but for a ready-to-buy colour pretty dead close to Barbie's, try Urban Decay's Eyeshadow in Dashiki ($17, urbandecay.com).

Next was the cat-eye liner. I first smudged a black liner pencil close to my eyelashes and along my upper waterline for a dark base to work with. I find this is the best way to get a line that is gap-free and perfectly black. Once I had the pencil liner smudged in, I applied liquid liner all along the upper lashline and then created small angled triangles at the outer corners and filled them in. For a more thorough tutorial on cat-eye liner, check out my video here. Lashes were then curled and a few coats of DiorShow Iconic mascara ($28, sephora.com) applied.

For the lips I used a lip brush to apply a bright cherry red, CoverGirl's Continuous Color Lipstick in Classic Red ($12.99, Amazon.com), rounding the points of my cupid's bow to make them more heart-shaped. I also added a light rose coloured cream blush to the apples of my cheeks and cheekbones, and gave myself very angular, 50's-esque brows with an angled brow brush and auburn brow powder.

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... And That Wild Late 50s Poodle Hair

I (frustratingly) tried a few different techniques to get these crazy, curly bangs, but the one that ended up working best was to use my ceramic curling iron to curl small sections upward. Basically, you clamp the section of hair closest to the root and then start to slowly twist the iron around the remaining section of hair, into a curl. When all my bangs were curled, I teased them slightly with a fine tooth comb and sprayed with my favourite hairspray. The rest of my hair I gathered into a ponytail and curled the ends of that with the same technique. More hairspraying ensued!

If you don't have bangs, you can still get the look by curling the front section of your hair, looping the curls back up to your hairline, and pinning.

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Now that we've got all that covered, I want to hear your favourite childhood Barbie memories. It's time to reminisce! Let's talk about Ms. Barbara Millicent Roberts and how hard it must have been to date Ken for so long.

Or you can just tell me what you're being for Halloween. Whatever!