Elizabeth Rosemond Taylor (1932-2011) is the queen of bombshells. She was always an optimist, a humanitarian, and had one hell of a commitment to glamour. I don’t think Elizabeth was ever seen not in full glamour mode, even when she was in a nightgown or a swimsuit. The woman has even had a diamond named after her.
Elizabeth (she never liked Liz) had a pretty good genetic head start. She had the hair as black as ebony and skin as white as snow of fairy tales, “violet” eyes, and an extra layer of eyelashes. Yes, my friends, she was born with “false” lashes. Life often threw her very unglamorous curveballs, however and she was more than a pretty face. She was a loyal friend and a talented hardworking actress.
Life lessons from Elizabeth:
- You will get through this. “Pour yourself a drink, put on some lipstick, and pull yourself together.”
- Sparkle as much as you want. “Big girls need big diamonds.”
- Be accepting. “The problem with people who have no vices is that generally you can be pretty sure they’re going to have some pretty annoying virtues.“
- Enjoy your work. “It’s not the having, it’s the getting.“
- Be authentic. “…I’m me. God knows I’m me.”
Here are instructions for an Elizabeth-inspired look featuring a red lip adapted from Kevyn Aucoin’s book Face Forward. This look is great for anytime you want to wear a red lip. Naturally, it goes well with diamonds and cleavage. It makes blue eyes pop, and also looks good on pale brunettes.
- Use whatever moisturizers and primers you like to prep your face for makeup.
- Use a concealer to cover anything that bugs you, like zits or dark spots.
- Lightly dust the skin with powder. This will keep your concealer from fading. My absolute favorite is Bare Minerals Mineral Veil.
- A groomed brow is important for any look. Groom your brows as you normally would.
- A little bit of soft pink powder blush is dusted on the cheeks. Elizabeth would rock a tan after the seventies, but her style is also great for pale girls (ahem). Whether you are bronzed or pale, just a tiny bit of color will keep the focus on your eyes. I’m a fan of Benefit box blush in Dandelion.
- For a bit of fun, Aucoin also suggests using eyeliner to add a beauty mark or even finding some light blue or purple contacts. (For me, this goes a little too far–I’m just inspired by Elizabeth, not dressing up as her.)
- For your eyeshadow, choose a dark brown metallic, cream is better. This color is especially fabulous on blue eyes like Elizabeth’s. Sweep it in oval shape over your eyelid, and run some under your lower lash line. It’s not a cream, but Younique’s Daring has the sparkle and stays put well.
- Now you want to break out the black liquid liner. Feel free to lay it on thick-remember Elizabeth’s eyelashes were already double, so for her to get her dramatic look, she needed even more then usual. Aucoin says to use liquid on the lower lashes as well, if this scares you use pencil or powder. This line isn’t thick, it’s just to bulk up those lower lashes. Urban Decay Perversion is the best liquid I have tried.
- Put on 2 full coats of mascara.
- Of course, to get 2 layers of lashes yourself you will most likely need to use a full set of falsies. (If you aren’t into falsies, skip them. If you like the look but can’t handle the maintenance, I highly recommend Younique Moodstruck Mascara layered over your everyday favorite.)
- Line and fill in your lips with a basic lip pencil. This may seem old fashioned, but it makes your lip color last longer and it really does give your lips a little something extra. (Like Elizabeth I like to emphasize “face, breasts, waist”.) Urban Decay makes a bunch of great neutral lip liners, and Victoria’s Secret Makeup also has good pencils in pink and red.
- Slick on some basic red lipstick, using a lip brush if you want to be precise (which Aucoin recommends for the true stylized Elizabeth look). Blot and reapply, or for a more casual look, just blot. You can also do this as many times as you like to “stain” your lips a deeper or brighter red color. Estee Lauder makes really good lipsticks. I would choose Scarlet Siren.
Here I am in Elizabeth’s makeup: