Flattering 1920s flapper makeup

Thanks to movies and shows like Great Gatsby and Downton Abbey, the 1920s flapper style is getting a worldwide revival. Even before they put flappers back in the spotlight, I was always a fan of this look – I think of it as an adverse reaction to all things constricting to women. Short hair, severe makeup, long pearls and drop waist dresses were the dress code for a decadent night of partying in speakeasies during the 1920s Prohibition era. Flapper beauties Louise Brooks and Josephine Baker are still style icons today.

The Great Gatsby

The Great Gatsby


Defined eyes

When it comes to 1920s-inspired wedding makeup, it’s a bit tricky not to look clownish, especially with the heavily defined eyes, exaggerated brows and dark lips. Normally, the makeup rule of thumb is to either emphasise the eyes or lips, but not both to avoid looking overly made up.

The secret to achieving a modern flapper makeup look is blending. For brides, you can incorporate this makeup look with an updated version that will make your eyes pop out.

Start with an eyeshadow primer over your eyelids to keep the makeup intact. Apply a charcoal shadow over your entire lid up to the brow bone. It’s important to keep blending it to avoid the dreaded raccoon look. Then with a black liquid liner or kohl pencil, define your eyes by drawing a line above your eyelid and at the waterline. Finish it with waterproof black mascara.

For flapper brows, the look is defined and elongated. With black eyeshadow, exaggerate the top curve of your brows and lengthen them by extending them beyond your normal brow length.

Look at Clara Bow’s elongated eyebrows.


Modern twisted lips

Flapper lips are very dramatic with a harshly defined lip line and dark red lipstick. But you don’t need to go too dark and overcrowd your face. Give it a modern twist by lining your cupid’s bow with a rose or dark pink lip liner and then blend away with a dark rose lipstick.

It’s best to finish this modern flapper look with a 1920s-inspired hairstyle of soft curls pinned closely to your head. I think this is a perfect look for creative modern brides looking to party ’til the wee hours of the wedding day morning.

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