Western cosmetics in the 1970s

Western cosmetics in the 1970s
In the 1970s, daytime cosmetics tended to be light and natural.[1]

Western cosmetics in the 1970s reflected the multiple roles ascribed to the modern woman.[1] For the first time since 1900, make-up was chosen situationally, rather than in response to monolithic trends.[1] The era's two primary visions were the feminist-influenced daytime "natural look" and the sexualized evening aesthetic presented by European designers and fashion photographers.[1] In the periphery, punk and glam were also influential. The struggling cosmetics industry attempted to make a comeback, using new marketing and manufacturing practices.


Influential aesthetics

Feminism and the "natural look"

The feminist-influenced "natural look" was popular during the 1970s.

Though some feminists in the 1970s continued to wear cosmetics, many others did not; Susan Brownmiller, for instance, called an unadorned face "the honorable new look of feminism".[2] The cosmetics industry, faced with increasing mainstream rejection of sexual objectification, began to market make-up as "natural" or "invisible".[3] A 1970 ad for Moon Drops "Demi-Makeup" read, "People will think it's your own fresh, flawless skin. (Let them.)"[3] Fragrances were also marketed to the "new woman".[3] Charlie—whose ads featured a no-nonsense, pantsuit-clad, independent woman—was a marketing triumph, becoming the nation's leading scent within a year of its release.[3] Serious, polite, and androgynous cosmetics were seen as appropriate for the business world, where working women felt increasing pressure to present a meticulous appearance.[2][4]

Similar aesthetics were seen elsewhere in the fashion world. In the 1970s, American fashion designers such as Ralph Lauren and Calvin Klein presented understated, neutral designs accompanied by natural make-up.[5] A similar look was embraced by photographer Francesco Scavullo, makeup artist Way Bandy, and hairstylist Maury Hobson, who collaborated on the covers of Cosmopolitan that established the 1970s "natural look".[6] Bandy's philosophy, described in his book Designing Your Face, held that make-up should be used not as a mask, but rather to alter perception and proportion, creating a personalized "ideal" face.[6]

Sexualized glamor

More dramatic makeup was often worn in the evenings.[1]

Make-up used by European fashion designers in the 1970s presented a sensual look for women in striking contrast to the "natural look".[7] Though models in Yves Saint Laurent's hugely influential runway shows wore menswear and short, slicked-back hair, their lips were glossy and bright red.[7] YSL's cosmetics line also employed intense, feminine colors.[5] In the violent, sexual porno chic fashion photography of French and Italian Vogue, women wore blood-red lipstick, glossy red nail polish, pencil-thin eyebrows and black eye make-up.[8] Women employed this vision of beauty for evenings, when they could aim to seduce in the era's discos.[9]

Punk singer Siouxsie
In 1974, raspberry-coloured lip gloss, and pencil-thin eyebrows were popular trends

Punk and glam

The punk movement that emerged in the late 1970s aimed to provoke rather than follow the trends of the day.[10] The movement, described as "anti-beauty" by Kate de Castelbajac, embraced intentionally artificial and aggressive make-up, tattooing, and body piercing to shock observers.[11] Black, fluorescents, and neo-tribalism were major aesthetic elements.[6]

Images of glam rockers like Alice Cooper, David Bowie, and Lou Reed in the pages of Rolling Stone established the influence of another extreme aesthetic.[12] The glam style drew on transvestism, androgyny, decadence, and camp; its "blasé sophistication" stood in marked contrast to the innocence and sincerity of the 1960s.[12]Glitter eye shadow and nail varnish were popular during this period.

Product developments and trends

Women tended to wear lighter foundation in the 1970s, which greatly increased the market for skin care products.[13] Anti-aging products were also increasingly important.[13]

Intensely-colored blush carried over from the 1960s to the early 1970s.[13] Tube blush was also extremely popular.[13] Lipstick in the 1970s tended to be either color or gloss; popular hues included deep pink, purple, and raspberry.[13]

Improvements in chemistry enabled the introduction of waterproof mascara along with better lash lengtheners and thickeners.[13] Matte colors were popular for eyes, in contrast to the iridescence that characterized 1960s make-up.[13] The decade's competing visions of beauty were seen in its dichotomy of eye shadow colors: both dramatic, smoky dark gray and transparent, natural beiges and grays were popular.[13]

Cosmetics industry developments

The health of the beauty industry declined in the 1970s, as the growth of cosmetics sales failed to keep pace with overall growth in personal spending.[2][14] The industry, according to a 1979 article in W magazine, had "lost its glamour".[14] Rather than developing innovative products, many companies had depended on price increases for profitability.[15] Consumers considered cosmetics companies outdated, uncreative, and dogmatic,[15] and manufacturers received negative publicity regarding the safety of cosmetics ingredients,[15][16][17][18] animal testing,[19][20][21] microbial contamination,[22][23] and the possibility of acne caused by cosmetics.[24][25]

The cosmetics industry responded to these challenges in several ways. New products were introduced, especially in skin care and sunscreen lines.[15] Manufacturers emphasized cost controls, quality, and selectivity in product introductions.[15] They also expanded into the ethnic, teen, and men's markets.[15][26] "Natural" ingredients were incorporated into cosmetics to satisfy growing tastes for organic products.[27]

New marketing and presentation practices also emerged. The custom of having a model as the contractually exclusive "face" of a single company arose when Revlon hired Lauren Hutton to promote their Ultima II line.[28] The strategy was quickly adopted by other companies; notable 1970s spokesmodels included Karen Graham for Estée Lauder, Margaux Hemingway for Babe, and Catherine Deneuve for Chanel.[12] Cosmetics companies also focused on service and appearance at the point of purchase.[29] Clinique's projection of an image of scientific authority using immaculate make-up counters attended by white-coated employees was representative.[30]

Business structures were also in flux. Revlon acquired smaller cosmetics firms, while Max Factor, Elizabeth Arden, and Helena Rubenstein were purchased by larger conglomerates.[15][31] Independent businesswomen such as Adrien Arpel, Suzanne Grayson, and Madeleine Mono established small, consumer-focused companies to challenge mega-firms.[30]

See also


  1. ^ a b c d e De Castelbajac, p147-48.
  2. ^ a b c Inness, p20.
  3. ^ a b c d Inness, p21.
  4. ^ De Castelbajac, p147-50.
  5. ^ a b De Castelbajac, p152.
  6. ^ a b c De Castelbajac, p158.
  7. ^ a b De Castelbajac, p150-52.
  8. ^ De Castelbajac, p154-57.
  9. ^ De Castelbajac, p148.
  10. ^ De Castelbajac, p150.
  11. ^ De Castelbajac, p158-59.
  12. ^ a b c De Castelbajac, p154.
  13. ^ a b c d e f g h De Castelbajac, p163.
  14. ^ a b De Castelbajac, p159.
  15. ^ a b c d e f g De Castelbajac, p160.
  16. ^ Bachrach, Eve E. "Cosmetics: The Legislative Climate." In Estrin, p163-72.
  17. ^ Baker, Frank W. & Norman F. Estrin. "Organization for Action: Development of CTFA's Scientific Programs." In Estrin, p193.
  18. ^ Marshall, Linda R. "Special Problems of Small Companies. In Estrin, p532.
  19. ^ Rhein, p343.
  20. ^ Baker, Frank W. & Norman F. Estrin. "Organization for Action: Development of CTFA's Scientific Programs." In Estrin, p195
  21. ^ Rollin & Kesel, p104.
  22. ^ Gad, p180-81.
  23. ^ Smith, John L. "Evaluating Your Microbiology Program." In Estrin, p303.
  24. ^ Butler & Poucher, p409.
  25. ^ Lees, p194.
  26. ^ Kent, p20-22.
  27. ^ Binkley, p163.
  28. ^ De Castelbajac, p153.
  29. ^ De Castelbajac, p160-61.
  30. ^ a b De Castelbajac, p161.
  31. ^ Kent, p93.
Works cited

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Игры ⚽ Нужен реферат?

Look at other dictionaries:

  • History of cosmetics — The history of cosmetics spans at least 6000 years of human history, and almost every society on earth.The ancient worldThe first archaeological evidence of cosmetics usage is found in Ancient Egypt around 4000 BC. Fact|date=February 2007 The… …   Wikipedia

  • The World (South African newspaper) — The World, originally named The Bantu World, was the Johannesburg black daily newspaper which published photographer Sam Nzima s iconic image of Hector Pieterson, taken during the Soweto uprisings of June 16, 1976. History The Bantu World was… …   Wikipedia

  • Clothing in the ancient world — The clothing of men and women and seveal social levels of Ancient Egypt are depicted in this tomb mural from the 15th century BC The clothing used in the ancient world strongly reflects the technologies that these peoples mastered. Archaeology… …   Wikipedia

  • Kemerton, Western Australia — Infobox Australian Place | type = suburb name = Kemerton city = Bunbury state = wa caption = lga = Shire of Harvey area = 75 postcode = 6233 pop = dist1 = 26 | location1 =Bunbury est = 1985 fedgov = Forrest stategov = Murray Wellington propval =… …   Wikipedia

  • History of Santa Monica, California — The History of Santa Monica, California, USA, covers the significant events and movements in Santa Monica s past. While intertwined with the history of its larger neighbor, Los Angeles, Santa Monica has led an independent existence in modern… …   Wikipedia

  • graphic design — the art or profession of visual communication that combines images, words, and ideas to convey information to an audience, esp. to produce a specific effect. * * * The art and profession of selecting and arranging visual elements such as… …   Universalium

  • Timeline of historic inventions — The timeline of historic inventions is a chronological list of particularly important or significant technological inventions. Note: Dates for inventions are often controversial. Inventions are often invented by several inventors around the same… …   Wikipedia

  • NEW YORK CITY — NEW YORK CITY, foremost city of the Western Hemisphere and largest urban Jewish community in history; pop. 7,771,730 (1970), est. Jewish pop. 1,836,000 (1968); metropolitan area 11,448,480 (1970), metropolitan area Jewish (1968), 2,381,000… …   Encyclopedia of Judaism

  • Hairstyle — Haircut redirects here. For the financial term, see Haircut (finance). For the 1982 film, see The Haircut. For the 1995 film, see Haircut (film). For the 1993 album by George Thorogood, see Haircut (album). Traditional hairstyle of a Japanese… …   Wikipedia

  • dress — /dres/, n., adj., v., dressed or drest, dressing. n. 1. an outer garment for women and girls, consisting of bodice and skirt in one piece. 2. clothing; apparel; garb: The dress of the 18th century was colorful. 3. formal attire. 4. a particular… …   Universalium

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”