20 Beauty Looks from 80s Movies

Posted by
Stylist Team
backgroundLayer 1
Add this article to your list of favourites

The 80s was the era of big things: humongous shoulder pads, huge hair and bushy eyebrows. But that doesn't mean it was bad.

In fact, we've been getting pretty nostalgic of late for power-suits and the 'Cindy' mole. So we say embrace the style of the 80s and take a gander at our tribute to the most iconic beauty looks on film from the decade.

Spoiler: this contains blue eye shadow.

(Images: Rex Features)

  • The Little Mermaid (1989)

    We know you were probably expecting Ariel. But let's face it, Ursula is pretty badass in the make-up stakes. She fearlessly rocks razor-sharp nails, bold red lipstick, the beauty spot and blue eye shadow. We're converted. You?

  • Heathers (1988)

    While Winona is always going to be our favourite in Heathers, there's something to be said for Shannon Dogherty's rouged cheeks and orange eye shadow. Oh and she had the bushy brows look nailed before Cara was even born.

  • Sixteen Candles (1984)

    Ever since we discovered lipgloss aged 13 we've never looked back and we have Mollie Ringwald (AKA The Queen of 80s high school movies) to thank for that.

  • Labyrinth (1986)

    This is an innocent look for Jennifer Connelly who plays protagonist Sarah. Her beauty is perfectly contrasted against David Bowie's sharp-featured evil goblin king, Jareth.

  • Pretty In Pink (1986)

    Iona in Pretty In Pink is one of the most fashionable film characters ever. A sartorial chameleon, she swaps awesome punk styling for ladylike glamour over the course of the film. This tribute to Cleopatra is our favourite look.

  • Tootsie (1982)

    Yep, we know Tootsie is a man. But we're not ones to discriminate and besides, he has amazing nails. Just check out those talons.

  • The Princess Bride (1987)

    From the moment we clapped eyes on Robin Wright as the Princess Bride, we knew wanted to have two things: long Rapunzel-esque hair and youthful dewy skin.

  • Blade Runner (1982)

    Daryl Hannah's Pris is not the most obvious choice to go with from Blade Runner, but it is the more adventurous. The all-over sweep of eye shadow isn't something we'll be wearing down the pub, unless there's an Adam Ant look-a-like contest, but it's definitely a style that we admire.

  • Steel Magnolias (1989)

    If there was ever a look that said the 80s, then this is it. The eyebrows and the classic Julia Roberts pout are a winning combination here.

  • Beetlejuice (1988)

    Eighties make-up wasn't just all glossy hair and red lipstick, you know. There was also Winona in Beetlejuice as the brooding Lydia with her simple gothic look.

  • Fatal Attraction (1987)

    Dark eyes paired with a deep tan translates as bunny boiler (apparently). So the next time you're thinking of getting bronzed and picking up the black eyeliner, you might want to reconsider.

  • Mystic Pizza (1988)

    While Kat (played by Annabeth Gish) is not as glamorous as her sister Daisy (Julia Roberts), her subtle beauty makes us nostalgic for simpler times, when not everyone on screen had to look like they'd just stepped off a Victoria's Secret catwalk.

  • Wall Street (1987)

    The blusher, red lipstick and a dash of blue eye shadow is power make-up at its best.

  • Mannequin (1987)

    Ah Kim Cattrall, there's little this woman can do wrong (Sex And The City 2 aside, that is). In Mannequin she becomes the sculptor Jonathan's ideal woman. We've been trying to emulate her flawless skin for years.

  • When Harry Met Sally (1989)

    Sally's style changes over time but this look is our favourite - tanned skin with just a hint of blusher, pink lippie and smokey eyes.

  • Batman (1989)

    Photojournalist Vicki Vale played by Kim Basinger is remarkably glamorous. It's no wonder she manages to snare Batman.

  • Desperately Seeking Susan (1985)

    Eons before we all became obsessed with tanning ourselves (real or bottled), there was Madonna in Desperately Seeking Susan, who made us want to have the palest skin, dark-kohled eyes, wear red lipstick, and pop a beauty spot above our top lip.

  • Flashdance (1983)

    Much has been made of the fashion in Flashdance over the years, but we love the beauty look too. Just check out Alex, played Jennifer Beals', disc0-inspired silver glitter. It shouldn't work but it does.

  • A Fish Called Wanda

    Jamie Lee Curtis is a beautiful jewellery thief, and as such has to ensure she looks her best to seduce whoever she's trying to con, hence the immaculate make-up.

  • Beaches (1988)

    The mere mention of Beaches has got us nearly in tears, so we'll keep this brief. Hillary (Barbara Hershey) has an elegant and timeless sort of beauty with her delicate skin accentuated by just a slick of bright red lipstick. This is exactly how we want to look when we grow up.