Open Monday thru Friday 9:00 am – 4:45 pm

Beauty Over the Past 100 Years

Beauty is always trending, but beauty trends are always changing. Read more to explore the most widely-known and documented beauty trends over the past 100 years!

Beauty Over the Past 100 Years

Beauty is always trending, but beauty trends are always changing. Although they are constantly changing, as history repeats itself, so do beauty trends. For instance, what was popular in the 90s and Y2K era is now popular in 2022.

Let’s explore the most widely-known and documented beauty trends over the past 100 years!


Think The Great Gatsby and flappers. Finger wave hairstyles, red lips, and darker eye makeup was rocked by women to express their rebellion against society.  Both glitzy and glamorous, women in the 1920s arrived to events with dramatic and fun-loving looks.


The 1990s was not the first time thin eyebrows were in style. Ladies in the 1930s plucked their eyebrows thin and complemented their look with light shades of makeup. Often women would shave their eyebrows completely off so that they could pencil them in a more rounded, upward, and thin shape. This trend was made popular by silent films.


World War II led to several women joining the workforce. Beauty upkeep was required to be more practical for everyday, working life, hence why light, matte makeup with bright, red lips became the norm. They choose to wear red lipstick as a way to boost their morale during tough times. Famous artist, Norman Rockwell, created the iconic image of Rosie the Riveter, a hardworking woman with her sleeves pulled up and wearing red lipstick, to inspire women in 1943.


Marilyn Monroe heavily entered the scene in the 1950s. Her timeless look greatly influenced the beauty industry. Bright lips were still a top choice for many women. Red lips became more associated with Hollywood and celebrities, such as Marilyn Monroe, Grace Kelly, and Audrey Hepburn, rather than Rosie the Riveter. Winged eyeliner was also a hot beauty sensation during the 1950s.


Bright lips lost traction during this decade. Nude, light lips, intense, thick lashes, and white eyeshadow traced with a thick line in the eye socket was your average look of the 1960s. Eyebrows were shaped with a thinner, defined arch and tapered end. It was all about making the eyes pop! Bouffant hair, flipped bobs, and beehives were worn by numerous women. The afro was revolutionized to support the “black and beautiful” movement, which was purposed to show black women are equally beautiful to the rest of the population. 


Funky colors and retro styles surfaced in the 1970s beauty world. Pastel eyeshadow and lip gloss was in everyone’s makeup bag. A more natural, sun-kissed look was additionally a go-to look. Voluminous, feathered hair, like Farrah Fawcett’s, was a staple of this decade.


People began expressing themselves with neon, highly-pigmented makeup, teased hair, and colorful lipstick. If you were doing your makeup in the 1980s, your makeup routine might consist of slapping on blue eyeshadow all the way to your bow bone, applying pink blush, and finishing with a pink lipstick. Your hair routine might consist of using a whole lot of hairspray and teasing skills to get the wild look you’re trying for.


People traded in their bright, bodacious colors for dark lips, light eye makeup, and thin eyebrows. Crimped hair, twisted updos, space buns, long layers, and layered medium lengths were seen in every beauty magazine. Hair accessories were all the rage in the 1990s. If you didn’t have a hair accessory in, were you even trying? Popular hair accessories included scrunchies, butterfly clips, glitter clips, colorful clips, headbands, pom-pom hair ties, barrettes, flower clips, bandanas, and hats.


The 1990s seemed to merge into the new millennium without shaking up too many beauty trends. Thin eyebrows, fun hairdos, and hair accessories were still mainstream, however frosted lips, contrasting lipliner, shimmery eyeshadow, and smoky eyes were introduced. Body glitter could be seen a mile away on women walking down the street and bronzer was a top selling product to achieve a faux glow.


Eyebrows became fuller and faces became perfectly contoured and highlighted. As social media influencers gained fame in the 2010s, they popularized how to maximize your bone structure by applying makeup with proper contouring and highlighting techniques. Brow-shaping and brow-filling was now prevalent among women with services such as microblading, which is a cosmetic procedure that shapes and colors brows with semi-permanent makeup.


In modern day, women have opted to go more au naturale with their makeup and hair. If you YouTube beauty trends, your search results will predominately display videos explaining how to achieve a natural makeup or hair look. Post pandemic, people have really taken their health, and the planet’s health, into consideration. Because of this interest, people are searching for natural beauty products.

What will be trending next? What trends will return from the past? Time will tell!

Interested in becoming a cosmetologist?

Call (352) 753-5511 or submit this form for more info about our cosmetology program.

Leave a Reply