Monday, February 9, 2009

Getting All Doll'd Up!

This is a compensated post from BlogHer and Mattel.


Let's face it: Barbie has it pretty good. In fact, she has it better than good! She's a legend, an icon, and forever eighteen.

And this year, Barbie's having her 50th anniversary! She's the muse to fifty designers this New York Fashion Week, as they send looks inspired by her down the runway on Valentine's Day. She's getting her own Dream House in Malibu, decorated by Jonathan Adler! And that's just the start of the year...

And, of course, she's collaborating with Stila Cosmetics to showcase several of her signature looks throughout the years. Kati and Karen both know that I've been wavering back and forth, adding and removing and adding and wondering and doubting and wanting, in regards to the 1959 #1 Ponytail Doll kit, which features a three-pan palette (two eyeshadows in blue and black and a coral blush), a red lipstick named "Ponytail" (perfect!), and, of course, black liquid liner. Hard to resist, right?

But I knew I had what it took to recreate the look on my own, and so, whether you jump for the 1959 #1 Ponytail Doll kit yourself or have some of these pieces in your own collection, here are some handy tips for getting the classic Barbie look.

- Barbie has incredible skin for a permanent teenager! Start with a foundation primer before you apply your foundations of choice; it'll help you get an even complexion.
- I never realized how amazing Barbie's brows are. When I do my brows, I do a wax-and-powder duo to tame my brows without making them look too-too heavy or severe.
- Use an eyelid primer before applying your make-up; this will make it last all day and all night without creasing. I put mine on and let it settle in while I do my brows.
- Start with a sheer or neutral wash from under the brow to the eyelid. I used "Magic Dust" eyeshadow from Barbie's 2007 collaboration with MAC. (What? I had to!)
- Now load up your brush with your blue shadow and pat it onto your eyelid. It's okay to start sheer at first, then build it on up.
- Using a liquid or gel eyeliner (I used a gel eyeliner and an angled eyeliner brush), line your top lid; feel free to go a little thick here. I learned the hard way, though, that it takes a little bit for gel eyeliner to dry. (Oops.)
- Use an angled eyeliner brush and pick up some black eyeshadow. Go over the top line with black shadow to soften the line and make it a little more smokey and less stark. Use the eyeliner brush and shadow to line your bottom lid as well.
- Now it's time for mascara! Go for it! And if you feel like putting on false eyelashes, I don't see why not!
- The Lips. Yes, they're capitalized. Use a lip liner (yes! a lip liner! You know Barbie uses one too!) to line your lips before applying your lipstick with a lip brush. The lip brush gives you a lot more control and definition, which is important when you're doing such a strong red lip.
- Finish up with just a hint of blush and a rocking pair of giant gold hoops.

Honestly, it seems like a lot of work and a lot of time, but I did my whole face in under twenty minutes from primer to photos.

Which means... I have photos. You bet I do, and here I am!

What do you think? I'm pretty excited, actually! I think I actually will use the blue and black smokey eye more -- it's so hot for spring, and don't you know that Barbie knows it! Which classic Barbie look is inspiring you this spring?


I was always fascinated by the de rigueur fashion model aspect of Barbie's persona. Just like the Clara Bow, the Marilyn Monroe, the Jackie Kennedy, the Twiggy, and the Kate Moss personas have become icons of beauty in their time(s), Barbie represents a certain kind of idealized female beauty. Certainly, Barbie dolls are made for girls to play with, but do you remember the best part about Barbie? The girl could change outfits like no other! I spent hours wishing I had just the right shoes, or top, to make Barbie's outfit perfect (I never did get it right).

Par example, we have the classic 1960 "Fashion Designer" Barbie. The occupational Barbies were always my favorite -- just as fashionable as the regularly marketed Barbies, but they came with a PURPOSE. I was a career-oriented child (who dressed up as "A Businesswoman" for Halloween, pinstripe suit, briefcase and all), I wanted to see that an older girl at age 18 had ambitions. Fashion Designer Barbie is fabulously power-suited. Really, it's what I'd love to see Peggy Olson wear on Mad Men next season, as she grabs Sterling Cooper in her hot little hand and runs the place with her little pinky finger, new hair and all.

If you can't see yourself pulling off the vintage candy-stripe bow blouse and matching pencil skirt suit set in hot pink, I've created a sleek, modern version for your styling pleasure.
inspired by 1960 "Fashion Designer" Barbie
inspired by 1960 "Fashion Designer" Barbie - by periodicstyle on

Modern Career Barbie's ensemble is still a little sassy, a little girly, creative, practical AND professional. Who didn't want Barbie's wardrobe when they were a girl? The raspberry Aquascutum trench is classic -- the same brand worn by military officers in the UK during the first two World Wars, so there's an unexpected tinge of history to it. A pencil skirt with a comfortably loose sweater simulates that 1960s suit shape in an updated, understated pinstripe. I just couldn't resist the open-toe rosette pumps, and neither could 1960 Barbie!

Fifty years and still going strong, that's our girl! You can read Barbie's All Doll'd Up blog at, friend Barbie on Facebook at, or follow her on Twitter at @barbiestyle.

We're not the only ones being inspired by Barbie -- check out what everyone else has to say about Barbie's celebrations!

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