There are a few steps that we certainly wouldn’t do today.
YouTuber Jessica Vill took on 1950s makeup in an experiment for her channel. Right away she found that makeup in the 1950s really didn’t involve many brushes. Foundation is applied using the hands, but not too thickly so as to avoid a “mask” application. Then eyebrows are penciled in and brushed upwards. Next comes eyeshadow- in a shade to compliment your eyes (according to the 1950s instructional film that Vill uses as a guide). The original tutorial instructs ladies to use blue for blue eyes and green for hazel eyes with fingertips used as the applicators. How different eyeshadow advice would be today!
Like the foundation, mascara is advised to be used sparingly to avoid a garish look. And it’s only for top lashes apparently. With lipstick they do advise using a lip brush and of course they suggest blotting well. Then powder is applied using a cotton ball and the finishing touch is a damp sponge wiped all over the face. For her part in recreating the look Vill is using Bésame Cosmetics lipstick and mascara and the classic Coty Airspun powder for the finish effect. You can see the original film here.
Find out what a modern makeup-wearer thinks of a 1950s makeup tutorial in the video below.