1960s Makeup

1960s icon, Twiggy
The Eyes Have it

For most of the 1960s, makeup was an essential part of the mod look, with a heavy emphasis on the eyes. The effect was really an echo of the smoldering dark-eyed, dreamy look of the 1920s, only more so and minus the coloured lipstick. In the 60s, foundation was natural in colour and the lips pale. While it may seem bizarre, it wasn't unheard of for some girls to wear white zinc cream on their lips. The basics included:
  • Foundation to cover blemishes and even out skin tone
  • Optional blusher in pale pink or peachy tones, used sparingly
  • Black eyeliner
  • Lashings of mascara
  • Neutral or pastel eyeshadow on the lid (blues and greens were popular)
  • Dark eyeshadow in the crease
  • Highlighter just under the brow
  • Pale lipstick in baby pink, beigey pearl or silvery white

1920s "It" girl, Clara Bow.

 Popular brands of make-up in 60s youth culture included Mary Quant and in Australia, Prue Acton, who's distinctive yellow and black mascara tube was a big seller -some mascaras came in a cake form that required dampening with a wet brush and eyeliner was almost always in tricky liquid form, which required a steady hand..

Twiggy Eyes
Penelope Tree. Image by Avedon
The popularity of iconic, super-slim model, Twiggy in the second half of the decade led to a brief fashion for painted on fine-lined 'Twiggy' eyelashes, drawn with an eye pencil on the outer corners of the lower eye lids or in some cases, all the way along. Twiggy was something of a a visual contradiction...boyish in figure and hair yet ultra-feminine in her stylised, romantic eye makeup.

Essentially, the 60s look depended on drama and making an impact through the eyes - windows to the soul - rather than the traditional vivid lips and voluptuous hair and clothes of the previous decade.