Love Means Never Having To Pluck Your Eyebrows: An Ali McGraw Inspired Look

Watch "Love Story," and when you're done crying, cheer yourself up by getting the Jennifer Cavalleri look.
Publish date:
August 6, 2013
blushes, lipsticks, mac, straight hair, eyebrows, hair, makeup, middle parts, movies, muses, fekkai, Ali McGraw, Love Story

Even if you’ve never seen the movie Love Story, there’s little doubt you’ve heard its most famous quote: “Love means never having to say you’re sorry.”

Hmmm... I don’t know about that, Love Story. In my experience, love means having to always say you’re sorry, sometimes even when you’re not sorry and if you’re not even sure why you should be sorry. Feel me?

Don’t get me wrong: You should definitely see the movie because you are guaranteed to sob at the end like a little emosh baby. But for me, the lasting impression this film left is not from the dialogue but rather the iconic hair, makeup and costume design.

Gorge dark-haired beauty Ali McGraw plays the ballsy and brainy Radcliffe student Jennifer Cavalleri, who falls for preppy, rich jock Oliver Barrett the FOURTH. Classic love story, am I right?

McGraw’s coed is all middle-part, straight hair and minimal makeup. She’s all about a strong brow and a matte face with nude lips, especially in the scenes when she’s working at a summer camp. Her tan and frizz-free hair are my idea of hot-weather perfection.

The best part: her whole vibe is easy-going and carefree, so it’s not a look that’s hard to copy.


It’s a bit of a tragedy that effortless hair takes some effort, but this look has a good payoff for very little work.

Start with a moisturizing cream with hold. I used Fekkai Glossing Cream because it’s great on damp hair and as a defrizzing touch-up on dry hair. Work your product through your hair, part in the center, and tie in a tight ponytail at the nape of your neck. Done. Summer camp counselor hair in like, two minutes.


OK, real talk: This was the '70s so there wasn’t exactly a ton of health-conscious stuff involved in Jennifer Cavalleri’s beauty routine. For example, sunscreen. This woman loved to tan. But you can fake this look without giving yourself age spots and skin cancer.

I used MAC’s powder blush in Harmony to fake a deep tan. I basically just closed my eyes and hit all the parts of my face that normally get dark in the summer. Super-casual.


This was the easiest part because Ali McGraw didn’t wear any eye makeup in the summer scenes. I swiped a bronze gel eyeshadow across my lids, though, to keep a kind of consistently golden look on my face.

The most important aspect is a strong, dark brow. Don’t hate me, but mine are just like that, so I used some clear gel to brush them into place. For normal people who don’t have gigantic, bushy eyebrow hair growing above their eyes, pencil those suckers in. Go big or go home!


It’s a nude, nude world in Love Story, so I applied MAC’s Pure Decoration on with wild abandon and just let the rest of my face do the talking.

It’s almost too easy. Seriously, watch Love Story, drool over Jen and Olly’s romance and then take your own beautiful face out for a stroll through a leafy college campus.