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Old And Sold Antiques Digest Article

Make Up And Beauty Tips

[Make Up - Part 1]  [Make Up - Part 2]  [Make Up - Part 3] 

( Originally Published 1963 )



PART 2:

PROFESSIONAL MAKE-UP TECHNIQUES YOU CAN USE

I want to tell you something about professional make-up techniques, not because I think they ought to be slavishly followed for everyday wear, but because they use fundamental principles that apply to good make-up no matter how much or how little you use. If I had to sum them up in a few words they would be blending, shadowing and emphasizing. And the key to success in all make-up-patience. Dave Lawrence has helped to teach me the value of these traits. Watching him do my makeups and the make-ups of other famous performers I've absorbed something of his approach. A too quick make-up has got to be a sloppy one. We allow at least a half hour to get me ready for a show.

Blending takes time, and every step in putting on a good make-up must be carefully blended with the step before it. There must be no sharp separations or visible demarcations of any kind on your face. Rouge must never be distinguishable as a separate area of color. Dave places a small amount of cake rouge on the highpoint of my cheekbone, then blends it back up towards my ear with a very fine soft sable brush using tiny circular motions. And this is the way all rouge should be applied.

Begin by putting so little rouge on your cheekbone-just at the very top of it-that you can barely see it. And, as far as I'm concerned, by the time you're through rouging it should still be impossible for anyone who sees you to be able to tell if you've used it.

The medicated stick must be used carefully. Applied properly under the eyes or in any indentations or sunken-in areas (such as the two little lines that start at the sides of your nose or those at the corners of your mouth) it successfully de-emphasizes these sharp lines but must then be well-blended into the rest of the base.

Shadowing is one of the most important techniques of theatrical make-up. Today, some of the big make-up houses are featuring darker bases to be used for the same kind of "corrective shadowing" (not eye shadow) for streetwear that we use for professional purposes. Skillful shadowing can actually change the shape of a face. When making me up for television Dave often shadows directly under my cheekbone with a very dark brown stick shadow (not the sort they are making for general use) and blends this shadow from under the cheekbone towards the corner of my mouth and then back towards the jawbone. This slims down my face and emphasizes my own natural hollows to counteract any possibility of an impression of a tooround face. All non-character female make-ups use dark shadow under the jawbone going from one ear to the other to eliminate any suggestion of a double chin.

If you are planning to use shadow for everyday wear, insist that the cosmetician where you buy the shadow give you complete training in how to use it. Shadow used badly can make you look like a wall of patched up plaster and old paint. You don't want your face laid out in obvious squares. This may intrigue abstract painters, but it may also give your friends the idea that you haven't washed your face in weeks.

This is a problem that holds true today for almost any makeup. There's so much on the market-much that's wonderful, some that's not so wonderful, but you must know what to do with it. The saleswoman who demonstrates the rouge or base can show you once. But most women cannot learn this sort of technique that quickly. It takes artists years to learn to use a brush, but women are expected to paint the most delicate of lines on their own faces without any training at all.

But if you try to understand the principle behind make-up technique you should be able to grasp it sooner or later. The principle of shadowing, for instance, is simple. Light brings a thing forward and gives it emphasis. Shadow (or dark) deemphasizes. Practice will do it for you once you realize the amount of care and time it takes to do it right. Then shadowing can play a very important part in your make-up when you want it to. You too can have those wonderful exotic hollows models have; you can squelch that double chin and flatten a protruding brow.

The opposite of shadowing is highlighting. Highlighting preparations are also being sold today for popular use. I've mentioned the medicated highlighting stick. Then there's a liquid or cream base-type substance about three shades lighter than your make-up base which can serve to raise the indentations of your temples, your perhaps too sunken-in cheeks, the under-eye hollows. You can create other visual illusions with highlighting. By putting a line of highlight down your nose you can make it seem straighter than it is, just as by shadowing under it you can cut its length. But lighting demands very careful blending to be sure that no color separations exist at all.

Highlighting is done of course for emphasis-applied to the feature or features in your face you choose to bring forward. If your eyes are the most dramatic feature of your face you will almost definitely choose to show them off.

THE EYES HAVE IT!

Eyes are that way. They give most faces their meaning. The true spirit of a person is usually found in his eyes. And many people in the world form their judgment about a person from the expression they find in the eyes because the eyes, they say, cannot lie. Whether or not this is true, we are certainly most conscious of the eyes of a person we are talking to. Either they draw us, or, if they are tense, nervous, unable to look back at us serenely, we find ourselves less and less willing to hold their gaze.

HEALTHY EYES BEAUTIFUL EYES

Most people's eyes are, or can be, beautiful. Whether the eyes are small or large, brown, gray, green, or blue, if they are healthy they will be a source of beauty. A healthy eye is clear, the white is white, the iris and the pupil are bright, and the lids are not granulated or pinkish. If the eye is rested it moves easily, quickly, and gives animation to the whole face. Our eyes are our direct link to life.

But civilization is taking its toll. The number of hours that your eyes are engaged in intense reading, close work, or screen watching is undoubtedly high. Never in the history of man have so many people spent so much of their lives bent over books or paper or newspapers or been so intent on little figures moving about a screen.

Until a hundred years ago, the eyes of most of the world were being used primarily in outdoor occupations-farming, hunting, sailing, fishing-things which demanded great variety of eye movements. Eyes which experienced this much natural movement had no need of eyeglasses or prescribed exercise. Our lives today are very different. Our eyes spend most of their waking hours in immobility and the six little muscles of the eye become cramped, distorted, tense, and weary. That's why you have to consciously work to relax them if you want them to be healthy and if you want them to look their most beautiful.

Your eyes benefit from good food, sleep, and activity as much as any other part of your body. They thrive particularly on vitamin A found in butter, carrots, cod-liver oil and in other fishfoods. Sleep, a deep calm sleep, will resurrect the weariest of eyes because the thin veil of moisture they bathe in while closed is a nightly unparalleled beauty bath for them. Fresh air and sun put shine into them. And all physical exercise rests the eyes by changing their daily close-up program, stimulates the blood stream, and sports like tennis, golf and riding give the eyes the long-range sort of workout they need.

EXERCISE THAT EYE!

Eye exercises sound like a terrible bore that no one has time for. But there are, fortunately, a few very simple motions which every eye ought to be able to do each day. The Elephant Swing serves several purposes at the same time. It gives your body a gentle toning exercise, it's wonderful preparation for sleep, and it rests your eyes in the space of a few minutes. Anyone who has ever seen an elephant should be able to master it.-Stand with your legs slightly apart, bend slightly from the waist, let your head drag your upper torso slightly forward and begin to sway from one side to the other turning a bit as you do. The effect, if you watch yourself in the mirror, should be the same as an elephant shifting from one enormous foot to the other, trunk swaying in the breeze. The point of the exercise is to allow your eyes to follow the movement of your body without focusing on anything at all. Your eyes remain open but passively take in the room as you sway without trying to see anything at all.

Palming, originated by the famous Dr. Bates (who reputedly restored Aldous Huxley's vision when it was almost completely lost) is a classic eye exercise, probably the best, and it should become as familiar to you as brushing your teeth. All you do is make cups of your hands and place the inside of the cups (your palms) over your closed eyes without touching them. After a few moments your eyes will begin to see a clear velvety blacka sign that they are resting.

Every time you blink, your eyes are bathed in moisture which refreshes them. When eyes are tensely concentrated many of us forget to blink. The muscles strain to see and we practically stop breathing. None of this is good for the eye. Consciously creating the habit of blinking, especially when you are using your eyes will greatly relax and help your eyesight. When reading try blinking at the end of every sentence or at the end of each line on the page.

Two very simple exercises which ought to take a total of about five minutes out of your day are these:

1 ) Turn your head from one side to the other as emphatically as if you were saying "No!" to a small child.

2 ) Hold your finger or a pencil about ten inches in front of your eyes. Look at it, then look past it to some distant view or to the end of the room. Repeat this about ten times and you will see how much less strained your eyes feel.

Try breathing once in a while. I'm serious. Many of us don't. We live in a state of tension, our muscles knotted up for long periods of time. Organs like your eyes suffer for want of oxygen which breathing brings to them. Especially remember to breathe when you're reading. It will relax not only your eye muscles but all of you.