Additions to the Book Shelf

Additions to the Book Shelf

Having recently completed my master’s, I now have the pleasure of reading books other than the ones that sat on my desk for two months whilst writing my dissertation. Gone are the textbooks on sustainable economic development through tourism and in are some lighter reads, including two new books by renowned makeup artists Lisa Eldridge and Gary Cockerill:

Face Paint: The Story of Makeup by Lisa Eldridge

If you’re a subscriber to Lisa Eldridge’s YouTube channel, you’ll probably note her interest in vintage makeup. I actually met Lisa a few years ago as an intern for BeautyMART in what would be the biggest highlight of my work experience. Drinking tea and flicking through old copies of Vanity Fair at Lisa’s home in the company of her adorable cats, and some of the industry’s most respected makeup artists, she showed us pieces from her Biba collection. Therefore it wasn’t too surprising that Lisa had written a book reflecting her passion for makeup history.

Lisa Eldridge Book

As well as covering the humble beginnings of the mammoth beauty industry we know today, Face Paint details the historical context behind our favourite products and the way in which we use and view them. Religion, trade, societal expectations and science are factors that have shaped this. For example, the rise and decline of the use of rouge can be linked to events including a preference for pale skin following Queen Victoria’s ascent to the throne and the French aristocracy’s penchant for being fashion forward. It’s because of this that Lisa realises her aim of the book forcing us to never look at our makeup bags in the same way again, because despite the different formulas and ingredients – such as poisonous lead in 16th century face powder or rouge made from red marble in ancient Persia – the motivation for beautifying oneself isn’t too far off from that of the women who came before us. Furthermore, by learning about old beauty rituals I can’t help but draw parallels between the public toilettes of royals like Marie Antoinette who “put on my rouge and wash my hands in front of the whole world”, and beauty vloggers. For me, Face Paint ultimately highlights that using cosmetics to look and feel beautiful is one of the threads connecting women across the many periods in history.

Simply Glamourous by Gary Cockerill

Renowned makeup artist Gary Cockerill, with clients including Eva Longoria and Kelly Brook, presents Simply Glamourous*. True to its name, the book is filled with comprehensive how-to’s for achieving high impact looks including the ubiquitous smoky eye, sculpted cheekbones and even a bold showgirl look. The basics of makeup are also covered, with readers able to discern the looks that will best complement them based on their eye shape, skin type and undertones thus making this book great for someone wanting to better acquaint themselves with makeup or women keen to venture out of their comfort zone.