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Face Paint: The Story of Makeup by Lisa Eldridge (Review)

Face Paint: The Story of Makeup by Lisa Eldridge (Review)

One of the most interesting and unique books I’ve read all year is Face Paint: The Story of Makeup by Lisa Eldridge. Tracking down information on makeup history can be challenging. I’ve managed to read a little about it over the years. Sometimes, I can find a section devoted to makeup in a book about fashion trends throughout history. However, I’ve yet to find a book that compiles makeup history as well as Face Paint. 

A surprisingly quick read, Face Paint covers makeup trends from ancient times to the present. It gives a look at the early days of cosmetic companies (such as Elizabeth Arden, Revlon, and Max Factor) as well as an overview of different moments in makeup history. For example, I learned a lot about early European makeup by reading this book. I love reading about history, especially fashion history, so this book was a no-brainer for me. Eldridge doesn’t only talk about makeup trends; she also explores the motivations behind these trends. For instance, the film industry helped expand the market for makeup, and red lipstick was seen as a patriotic stance during WWII. She examines the influence of art and literature on makeup (and vice-versa). For example, early Christian writers equated makeup with deception, which made makeup unpopular during the Middle Ages. Face Paint is full of interesting facts.

Face Paint: The Story of Makeup by Lisa Eldridge (Review)

Face Paint contains many beautiful, glossy photos. If you leave it on a coffee table, expect for your guests to give it some attention! The book is broken into sections that focus on different aspects of makeup. The order is semi-chronological, and it never drags. Honestly, I could have kept reading more and it would have continued to hold my interest! Eldridge’s passion for makeup shines through the informational text. The book is well-curated, introducing makeup icons throughout the book. For makeup fanatics and history lovers, Face Paint: The Story of Makeup will please! Eldridge provides a comprehensive and interesting perspective on an often overlooked aspect of fashion history. From the first page to the last, this book is fascinating and original.

Lisa Eldridge made a video on her Youtube channel about the history of makeup, which gives you a taste of what her book is like. I really enjoyed reading it, because it is so different from what I usually read. What are your favorite nonfiction books? Be sure to follow me on Bloglovin’ and Instagram, check back soon and comment below!