7 Beauty Lessons You SHOULDN’T Follow From Old Hollywood

Via Stylelist   Posted: 01/11/12 01:39 PM ET  |  Updated: 01/13/12 03:38 PM ET

7 Beauty Lessons You SHOULDN’T Follow From Hollywood’s Golden Age

These days images of an overly-altered Heidi Montag or Britney Spears with her unfortunate extensions are scary reminders of the drastic (and not always pretty) lengths celebrities will go to achieve their own and society’s ideals of beauty. This has been going on for decades in Hollywood, even the most stunning of actresses from the ’30s, ’40s and ’50s were implementing their own bizarro beauty techniques to hide personal insecurities.

Did you know that Rita Hayworth felt so uncomfortable about her low hairline she had it raised, then dyed her black hair that famous shade of red? Elsewhere, both Elizabeth Taylor and Marilyn Monroe shaved their faces to get rid of unwanted peach fuzz. And Marlene Dietrich apparently had her upper molars removed to create shadows underneath her cheekbones, which looked even more dramatic with the contrast of the black and white film of the time. Admittedly, I’ve made my share of questionable beauty decisions: I nearly burned my face off with a shall-not-be-mentioned face exfoliant, all in the name of luminous skin. This subsequently seemed counter-productive since I walked around with my hand over my face for the next five days.

Herewith, a round-up of the some of the more alarming beauty tricks favored by the women of Hollywood’s Golden Age:

UPDATE: A previous version of this post stated incorrectly that Marilyn Monroe grew hair on her face due to a side-effect from a hormonal cream.

Marlene Dietrich:  She was rumored to have had her molars removed to give her cheekbones a more pronounced look. The German-born actress also had hairstylists pull her hair back tightly with hair pins and surgical tape, so her face would have a more taut, “face lift” effect.

Carole Lombard:  The wife of Clark Gable was so self-conscious of a crook in her nose that she drew a thin white line down it before she applied makeup, she believed this created the illusion of a straight nose.

Vivien Leigh:  The British actress had a thin lower lip, which she penciled over her natural lipline and filled in with lipstick.

Claudette Colbert:  The French-born actress was so embarrassed by her uneven face, she refused to ever be shot by the right side. Sounds like Mariah Carey took a page out of Colbert’s book.

Elizabeth Taylor:  She was born with hypertrichosis, an excessive body hair condition. She was covered with dark hair all over her body, including her ears and nose. Though it eventually fell off, the actress was known to shave her face to create a smooth, hairless effect.

Rita Hayworth: The flame-haired actress, who was actually born with black hair, had her hairline raised a full inch with electrolysis. Also, her hair grew so quickly that she had to dye it every three days to conceal her dark roots.

Marilyn Monroe:  In an effort to get glowy skin and remove unwanted peach fuzz, Monroe was known to shave her face.

Comments

  1. Great post! My fav fashion icons are Audrey Hepburn & Princess Grace of Monaco- they had great style & charm!

    Like

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