“Pretty-sad”…A make up look that is all about being sad…

I grew up in the 90’s…a decade that was marked with uncertainty for the youth in a baby boomer run society, and the idea that kids might not be okay. Teenagers were involved in the culture of sad, dealing with depression and anxiety. The 90’s culture, music, shows, movies made being sad more visible in the mainstream. Present day, it seems as if a new generation of happy, well adjusted teens has since replaced the stringy hair, grungy, plaid-clad youth of my teens. And so…as homage to my youth I created the “pretty sad” make-up look.

What is the “pretty sad” make up look? It’s the way one might look after crying and realizing there is no escaping life or destiny. Eyes are red from crying, perhaps at unrequited love, and make-up is not perfect. Half covering up the emotional damage, half smeared and old. Pretty sad is about looking little unwell, fragile and affected. And in a way, I think it’s pretty cool. Sometimes one has to let sadness and weakness surface…as a means to purge these feelings. After all it is much better to look sad than to actually be sad!

Sad Girl Make-up Steps:

  1. Prep and even out the face. Here’s the time to use a tinted moisturizer or a sheer coverage foundation/bb cream. Set with a light dusting of face powder. Why go so sheer? This look is about looking undone. So some facial flaws and blemishes actually look right.
  2. Eyes: The eye make-up will sell this look. What is needed in a good shadow base, and then pinky red eye shadow over the top lid and line the bottom lid too. It gives the eyes a slightly irritated look. As if tears were shed not too long ago! Also line the bottom lid with a thin line of dark shadow as if a liner was once there but has since been cried off.
  3. Liquid liner: Here’s the fun part…don’t do a perfect line. make it blotchy, make it smudged. As if the eyes were wiped a few times with tissues.As if eye liner was quickly reapplied. Get creative with it.
  4. Smudged mascara: use heavy coats of mascara and before it dries, blink eyes tightly together and voila…it’s a smeared, cakey mess!
  5. Blush just on the nose: Ever cried and had a red nose? Yes! Take some blush and power the tip of the nose, the nostrils and the undersides. It’s cute in a pouty way.
This is the “I’m with the band” palette by Essence makeup. See the red shadow in the middle top row? That’s the one to use for a sad makeup look.
Lookin’ like a mess, but feeling ok. Sad make up at its best.

And there you have it. The make-up look that speaks of the melancholic pain that haunts the soul. Have the eyes of a poet, while having the elegance of a made up face! I did this look for school last week and my instructor commented on how I looked sad that day. But the truth was, it was all cosmetic and I was simply celebrating the right and beauty to let oneself be sad.

What do you think? Let me know!

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