We joined professional makeup artist Mandy McKenna at The Last Tangle Salon to put together this tutorial for you about how to do a 1940s pinup makeup look! The look includes the lightly shadowed eye, cat eye eyeliner and of course ruby red lipstick! This video covers the vintage pinup makeup look, and then shows the final product at the very end. The video is a little long, but trust me – you’ll want to watch it start to finish. The professional makeup artist gives tons of valuable insider tips and advice you won’t want to miss! I also ask Mandy about her experience in cosmetology school and her career as a makeup artist, and she has tons of valuable information to share.
If you like what you see here and you’re interested in becoming a makeup artist, look for makeup schools near you.
Here’s the final look!
“How to Do a 1940s Pinup Makeup Look Tutorial” Video Transcript
Heather/Beauty Schools Directory: Hey there, this is Heather with Beauty Schools Directory. I’m at The Last Tangle Salon in Overland Park, Kansas. We’re going to go in and talk to some of their very talented hairstylists and makeup artists about doing a pinup hairstyle, as well as pinup makeup for the vintage holiday party tonight. We’ll ask them a little bit about how they got into beauty and cosmetology, and see what interesting tips and advice they can offer us. So come on in!
Heather: We’re inside The Last Tangle Salon in Overland Park, Kansas and we’re going to meet our makeup artist of the day. Would you like to introduce yourself and tell us who you are?
Mandy McKenna/Makeup Artist at The Last Tangle Salon: I’m Mandy McKenna, and I’m a hair and makeup artist here at The Last Tangle Salon.
Heather: And what are we doing today Mandy?
Mandy: We are going to give you a nice 1940s pinup makeup look.
Heather: And what is all this over here?
Mandy: Well these are my brushes. You gotta have a good eyeliner brush because they really concentrate on the cat eye eyeliner. It’s very important to have that, and a nice contouring brush, too. Though it doesn’t look like they wore a lot of eye shadow, it’s mainly contouring with nude looks.
Heather: So is this your standard kit? You have this on you at all times? This is what you use?
Mandy: Yes, this is for the salon, then I have a kit for on-location.
Heather: What’s the makeup style you tend to do most often?
Mandy: The smokey eye. Everyone wants the smokey eye!
Heather: So what do you say we get started?
Mandy: Sure, grab a seat!
Heather: What just happened there?
Mandy: That’s just alcohol. We like to be nice and sanitary. Any time you see me spraying this I’m just sanitizing.
Heather: So did you go to makeup artist school?
Mandy: Cosmetology school.
Heather: Where’d you go to school?
Mandy: Merrell University in Jefferson City, Missouri. Do you have anything on your face right now?
Heather: I have just foundation.
Mandy: Is it a liquid or powder?
Heather: Why do you ask?
Mandy: Because I can’t put liquid foundation over powder, it’ll get cakey. I’m actually a MAC Artist, MAC Cosmetics. I’ve been doing that since 2008.
Heather: About 3-4 years now?
Heather: Have you been doing makeup for just the three years, or did you do makeup even before you got into cosmetology schools?
Mandy: Well I’ve been an artist my whole life, so it kinds of coincides.
Heather: An artist like paintings and other creative stuff?
Mandy: Yeah, I like watercolors and charcoals.
Heather: So is that how you knew you wanted to be a makeup artist?
Mandy: No, I actually wanted to be a vet.
Heather: Really? What happened? What changed?
Mandy: I don’t like needles or blood, so that was the realization I came to. And I actually have my degree in computers.
Heather: Interesting – what a strange place to end up then! So what happened or changed that made you want to go to cosmetology school instead?
Mandy: I ran a salon for three years when I was in college, and I just really liked watching him. He was a world renowned hairdresser. He’s actually a judge of competitions internationally and he trains the U.S. Olympic Hair Team. So it was fun watching him create things and he was just very inspiring. And there was another lady who worked there who was a Miss Missouri Pageant Consultant for 12 years, so it’s just fun to watch people create. People always feel a lot better going out than coming in.
Heather: So that’s probably why you stick around? It makes people feel good?
Heather: So do you feel makeup allows you to be as creative as you are as an artist already?
Mandy: Yeah, actually this weekend Jen (the owner) and I did a creative thing. It was like Carnivale and the masks. So she did some crazy hair and I actually created with makeup masks on the face. Ok, this is an eye primer, for the eye shadow. You want a nice primer to give you a nice base since there are a lot of blood vessels and stuff throughout the eye, and the skin is very thin there, so you want to camouflage all that with a nice primer. You can see the difference.
Heather: When you do event makeup do you typically do makeup first and hair second?
Mandy: It really depends. It depends because I do their hair, too, but it depends on what they’re doing with their hair. I do spray tanning, lash extensions – I do it all.
Heather: How long did it take you to finish cosmetology school?
Mandy: About a year and a half, because I actually worked while I was going, too. I worked 30 or so hours a week. Usually it will take a year if you’re not working, too. cosmetology school is basically worknig but not getting paid, because you’re behind the chair, but you’re only getting tips.
Heather: Or if you’re a makeup artist you’re in front of the chair!
Mandy: So we’re going to do a nice neutral eye, with this kind of vanilla color. I’m going to put this all over your lid. And that’s going to create a base for your eye shadow.
Heather: I have blue eyes, so she’s going to do an orange.
Mandy: I’m going to do an orange undertone, so it’s going to make her eyes even more blue. Yeah, it looks gorgeous right now. [Laughs] Kind of dust the brush off and we’re going to blend it.
Heather: I heard that blending is the most important thing you can learn as a makeup artist . Is that true?
Mandy: Yeah, it is. It’s very important. I’m blending that on the outer corner and the inner corner. For the ’40s makeup they really had a highlight over the middle of the eye. And then blend it in the crease.
Heather: I’m the worst client ever, I’m opening my eyes half the time. I want to see!
Mandy: Dab a little here, a little there. And just to show you the color I’m using, it’s this color right here (a bronze orange hue)