Having Marilyn Monroe as my ultimate beauty icon might seems a little stereotypical and you're probably thinking what else could be said about the famous blonde bombshell, but this is my take on it. When I was first informed about the House of Fraser Beauty Ambassador competition; all about writing an inspirational post on your personal beauty icon & how you could represent their signature style (you can read all about it on the official House of Fraser blog) I immediately thought of Marilyn Monroe. Initially I was put off by the idea as I wasn't sure how I would portray her and stand out from what everyone else has said before, but here I am writing this post…
After thinking about it for a few days I just knew I had to go with my first instinct because after all Marilyn has been a beauty inspiration to me since I was a teen, when I was attracted to her signature makeup look; the flawless skin, the perfect cat flick and the red lip, I just thought she was absolutely stunning. I loved her numerous iconic poses in her sexy & sultry ways, I was blown away by the confidence she exuded. As I got older those things started to become less important as I was more interested in finding out the real Marilyn, the one behind all the makeup and the clothes and the provocative photos (which was the character that she was given by the media working behind her). I wanted to see her natural beauty and discover as many candid photos as I could find, to see the famous icon in her natural environment. Fortunately if you keep searching you will find those photos, so many beautiful shots of Marilyn in her carefree state, whether she's showing sadness or true happiness you can see it all in these photos. Some of my favourite photos of her are by Eve Arnold and George Barris, which I've included in the collages below.
Her signature makeup look is still visible in these photos but in a natural & stripped back way. The iconic look that has stuck around for years (even to this day) is still part of her, but somehow there is raw beauty here that's not visible in the famous posed photos. These images of Marilyn capture my attention entirely and instead of being intimidated by her beauty I am drawn to it completely. The one thing that stand out for me the most in all her photos is her confidence, because she just radiates it from every angle of her body & face. That's why I personally feel like there is no other beauty icon like her and there never will be. It's one of the reasons why I haven't even been able to watch other females playing her role in movies or TV shows, because they just don't compare to the real Marilyn. If there's one thing I can take & learn from my beauty icon…it's confidence, which I'm sure a lot of women can relate to. Who can honestly stand proudly and say in Marilyn's words "I live to succeed, not to please you or anyone else…"? I certainly can't believe in myself 100% all of the time and there's days where all I can see is the flaws, but I am gradually trying to change that & hope that one day I can show half the confidence that Marilyn had because "it's better to be absolutely ridiculous then absolutely boring".
To create my makeup look I've focused on a few of Marilyn's signature features which truly stand out to me. Most of all I've tried to incorporate her natural beauty and confidence to create a personalised look of my own (inspired by the beauty icon herself of course)…
Glowing skin: one thing you noticed with every single photo of Marilyn, is that her skin is literally flawless as it has the most natural glow to it. I have tried to create my own glowing base using a mixture of MAC Strobe Cream & MAC Pro Longwear Foundation.To define my face in the same perfected way Marilyn has, I used Benefit Hoola as a contour and then added a peachy pop of colour to my cheeks using Benefit Coralista. To highlight all the right areas of my face I used my all time favourite MAC Soft & Gentle.
Defined brows: Marilyn's brows are complete perfection with a beautiful arched shape. I can only dream to have natural eyebrows like hers, but in the meantime I fill them in using my Anastasia Beverly Hills DipBrow Pomade and then set them in place using Benefit Gimme Brow.
Classic cat eyes: If there is one thing that I absolutely adore about Marilyn's look is the perfect feline flick that is visible in pretty much all her photos. The angled black liner paired with fluttery lashes define her eyes beautifully. I've created a flick to suit my own eye shape using Inglot Black Gel Liner and then added tons of volume, length & curl to my lashes using Benefit They're Real combined with Benefit Roller Lash.
Hot Lips: Marilyn's signature lip shade is red which looks amazing on her, but I personally shy away from red which is definitely not a colour that gives me confidence. Instead I opted for a shade that I love wearing all year round and that is MAC Lipstick in Rebel. To take away from the deep raspberry shade (which is more winter appropriate) I lightly patted on the colour and then used Elizabeth Arden 8 Hour Cream to add a glossy finish.
Wearing this makeup look inspired by my beauty icon Marilyn Monroe certainly gives me an extra boost of confidence and let's my natural beauty shine through, as I don't need to feel self conscious. I'd love to hear your thoughts on this inspired makeup look… is it something you could see yourself wearing?
A lot of the products that I used in this look can be bought on House of Fraser's Makeup Department, where I could literally loose hours browsing through all the amazing brands on offer. All that's left to do now is cross my fingers that I will be considered as House of Fraser's Beauty Ambassador *wish me luck*…