Ahhhh, Marie Antoinette, the Austrian girl-child who would become the Queen of France, spending the country into the poorhouse, pissing everyone off and looking fabulous all the while.
Yes, she's a frivolous icon to feature but you can't deny the gorgeousness of 18th-century fashion. It's practically where fashion began.
When the women of Paris got word Le Reine was wearing her hair a certain way or buying shoes from Monsieur So-And-So, they wanted in on it too. An original trendsetter!
While I don't have a team of maids and Parisian hairdressers to fuss over me, I do have ingenuity and access to modern wonders such as aerosol hairspray and electric curling irons, so I decided to do a quick cheater's version of the Marie Antoinette look, free of any mop-like wigs. Let's get goin'.
That Gigantor Bird's Nest
To create this look with my own hair, free of wigs or any hair pieces, I required a LOT of hairspray. I started off using baby powder to give my hair a nice working texture and soak up any oils, and then moved along to backcombing the top with a natural bristle brush to begin building volume. I looked a bit like Snooki at first.
Next, I repeated the backcombing on the sides of my head and pinned the pieces into little poufs an inch or so above my ears. Any small pieces hanging down I curled with a half-inch iron to create tight ringlets.
I continued the pinning process until all that was left was a small bit of hair near the nape of my neck. I gathered this on the side, under my ear, tied with a ribbon, and curled the ends into the same tight ringlets. Plenty of hairspray was used throughout.
The next step was getting that powdered wig look. I used a can of white-tinted hairspray from the Halloween supply store to coat my hair, and added some spray dry-shampoo too. Try Trésemme's Fresh Start Volumizing Dry Shampoo ($2.99, amazon.com).
Final details for me included a few loose white feathers and a pink feather hair clip I purchased at H&M a few years back. Other options could be pastel-coloured birds from a craft store, clip-on rhinestone earrings, bejeweled bobby pins, or a rhinestone necklace or bracelet pinned at an angle.
That Porcelain Doll Face
Everything was super-duper powder-y looking back then, like little frosted cakes dusted with much too much icing sugar. After applying your foundation and any needed concealer, use a generous application of a loose translucent face powder like N.Y.C.'s Smooth Skin Loose Face Powder in Translucent ($2.99, drugstores)
Cheeks were heavily rouged and doll-like, so try a super-pigmented powder formula for an authentic look. NARS' Blush in Exhibit A ($27, narscosmetics.com), applied to the center of the cheeks, is a great pick.
Again, lips would have had a bright reddish tint. For that "I spend my days sipping wine" look, try applying a bold red lipstick with your fingers. Focus the colour in the center of your lips and then blend outward for a Bordeaux-stained tint. (I'm wearing Dior's Rouge Dior in Ara Red [$32, sephora.com] in these shots).
Eyes were pretty simple. I used a shimmery burgundy shade on the outer corners of the upper and lower lashline and blended into the crease, then applied a bronze-toned shadow to the rest of my upper lid. I used a single coat of mascara on the upper lashes only and for a final touch I applied a little beauty mark with liquid liner above my cheekbone.