Classic Makeup Looks: 10 Must-Know Timeless Styles

marilyn monroe classic makeup looks timeless styles

Over the years, there are some makeup trends that seem to continually come back into style. When we think of classic makeup looks, we tend to gravitate towards winged eyeliner, bold red lips, or even a dark smokey eye. Professional makeup artists (MUAs) have perfected old techniques keeping these classic looks alive while introducing modern looks that are known for their allusions and wide-range use of colors. Iconic figures like Marilyn Monroe have popularized the red lip look, inspiring others to recreate this bold trend.

10 Must-Know Classic Makeup Looks

Classic Look One – The Cat Eye

The timeless Cat Eye style. Photo by Atikh Bana unsplash
The timeless Cat Eye style (Photo by Atikh Bana)

The cat eye to this day is one of the most classic eyeliner techniques that many MUA’s and influencers have recreated as well as updated with their new techniques. The cat eye, also known as winged eyeliner is a stunning eyeliner look that you can wear no matter the occasion whether you’re dressing up or dressing down! From early Egyptians to Marilyn Monroe, this winged eyeliner is a sexy look that has been around for decades. Extending the eyeliner past the corner of the eye, this defines the eye itself while intensifying it’s features.

Classic Look Two – The Red Lip

The forever classic Red Lip takes on a metallic glam. Photo by Oladimeji Odunsi.
The forever classic Red Lip takes on a metallic glam (Photo by Oladimeji Odunsi)

If you’re looking to make a bold statement, you can never go wrong with a red lip look! Whether you are going for a natural look or a full face, the classic red lip will set it off. Taylor Swift is just one of few celebs that have made this her signature look and it seems to work every single time! This bright, red lip look truly accentuates the facial features.

Classic Look Three – The Smokey Eye

Bring on the drama with a Smokey Eye (Photo by Cristian Newman)
Bring on the drama with a Smokey Eye (Photo by Cristian Newman)

The traditional smokey eye is a bit more on the dramatic side of makeup looks. Using dark shades like black, brown, and grey one should apply these darker shades around the lids while applying a lighter shade on the corner of the eye as well as the lid. In order to achieve a more dramatic effect, one can apply the darker shade under the eye as well to give more definition. The classic smokey eye is the perfect look for a night out with the girls!

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Classic Look Four – The White Tightline

White Tightline Eyeliner (Photo via L'Oreal)
White Tightline Eyeliner (Photo via L’Oreal)

Alongside the cat eye and the smokey eye is a makeup trend that has been around for quite some time. Applying white eyeliner under the eye is a timeless look that will make your eye color pop every single time! Over the last few years, the white tightline has been a trending sensation all over social media, displayed by many upcoming makeup artists.

Classic Look Five – The No-Makeup Look

classic no-makeup look woman in fur hood with beautiful skin
Who needs makeup when you can hide in a lush fur hood! Photo by Alexandru Zdrobau)

As some of you may relate, there are days where many of us just don’t have the time to do a full face of makeup. If this has ever been you, a natural makeup look is something you should definitely try! Keeping a subtle makeup look will truly highlight your natural beauty. With a light foundation and simple eyebrow, anyone can wear this look. Instead of applying eye shadow, a simple eyebrow and a little mascara will make your natural features stand out.

Classic Look Six – Glowing Skin

Getting your glow on is never out-of-style! (Photo by Corey Saldana)
Getting your glow on is never out-of-style! (Photo by Corey Saldana)

In order to achieve a more radiant look with your skin, introducing a highlighter to your makeup routine will brighten your face tremendously. From powder highlighters to liquid, they provide a wide range of options based on your preference. Powder highlighters can be applied with a small brush while liquid highlighters can be applied with beauty blenders and sometimes your finger. MUA’s typically apply highlighter to areas that you would like to stand out. These include your cheekbone, above the brows, parts of the nose, the cupids bow, and sometimes below the lip. Sometimes we all need a good glow! People with oily skin are the most suitable to apply the glowing skin makeup thanks to their natural shiny complexion; thus a little powder to control the shine level and a cc cream to cover some weaknesses are enough to achieve this makeup look!

Classic Look Seven – Natural Eye Makeup

Natural eyes are a beautifully timeless style (Photo by Hadis Safari)
Natural eyes are a beautifully timeless style (Photo by Hadis Safari)

Aside from the sexy and bold classic makeup looks that we all love, you can never go wrong with an elegant natural eye makeup look. With a perfectly pigmented eye shadow palette that includes some bronze and shimmery shades, a flawless natural look can be achieved with each use. Bronze palettes are great for everyday wear and can be used as another technique for drawing attention to one’s eyes. Sometimes keeping it simple is the way to go!

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Classic Look Eight – Contouring

classic makeup looks how to contour like a pro l'oreal makeup
Contouring can make a world of difference when it comes to making makeup work for you (Photo via L’Oreal)

Whether you’re trying to change the appearance of your facial structure or intensify your features, contouring is an interesting technique that can be used to do so. Makeup artists, influencers, and even drag queens have used this method time and time again. You can alternate between creams, liquids, and powdered products. Using a darker shade in areas like the nose, chin, cheekbone, and forehead can create an allusion of shadow which ultimately helps slim the face.

Classic Look Nine – Glitter Glam

Glam things up with glitter for a classic artistic and luxurious look. (Photo by Sindy Strife)
Glam things up with glitter for a classic artistic and luxurious look. (Photo by Sindy Strife)

A little glitter is always a must! If you want to up the glam, applying glitter to your eye shadow will spice things up, creating a dramatic effect perfect for a night out. Sometimes glitter can even be applied as a highlight to your cheekbone and corners of the eye. There are loose glitters, cream glitters, and even glitter that comes in palettes. These can be applied with small, flat brushes as well as the fingertips. We love a good shimmer!

Classic Look Ten – The Cut Crease

Learning how to create a cut crease is definitely a classic makeup must! (Photo from MFG Magazine)
Learning how to create a cut crease is definitely a classic makeup must! (Photo from MFG Magazine)

Last but not least, the cut crease. Over the decades, MUA’s have updated so many classic techniques while also inventing their own unique, modern looks that we have seen. The cut crease helps to create this allusion of bigger eyes. By using different eyeshadow shades and creating a sharp contrast in colors typically with concealer as a base, a crease is made on the eyelid. MUA’s have used this technique creating depth-like allusions creating a jaw-dropping visual!

Words by Adrian Porter

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