Blonde curls, red lips, a dainty beauty spot: Few stars have imprinted as firmly on our visual culture than Marilyn Monroe.

When Kim Kardashian stepped out onto the red carpet at the Met Gala earlier this year, the reference was unmistakeable. With Monroe’s famous sequinned naked dress clinging to her body, hair bleached white-blonde, the Kardashian paid homage (albeit controversially), to the star’s staying power in the American imagination.

Now, Monroe’s image is being brought back to the big screen with Blonde: Marilyn is having a moment, it seems. The film, from Australian director Andrew Dominik, is based on Joyce Carol Oates’ loosely biographical account of Monroe’s life, and features pitch perfect recreations of her most iconic looks.

Ana de Armas portrays Marilyn Monroe in the new film Blonde.Credit:Netflix via AP

“There are few make-up looks as iconic as that of Marilyn Monroe’s,” says artist Katie Angus. “She encapsulated old hollywood glamour like no other with her striking contoured eye and dazzling red lips, setting a precedent for beauty trends for years to come.”

“For a classic version of ‘The Marilyn’ aim for a consistent finish to your base with a mid/full coverage foundation. She notoriously applied Vaseline underneath her foundation but I recommend sticking with a moisturiser and primer for longevity,” says Angus, who recommends Giorgio Armani’s Luminous Silk Foundation for mid-coverage or Tom Ford’s Traceless Soft Matte for fuller coverage.

“Strip lashes are a must to finish the look,” continues Angus, “and for those brave enough, the beauty spot using a soft eyeliner pencil adds the final character.”


Below, make-up artist Tatiana Rose shares a tutorial on recreating Marilyn’s iconic beauty look.

Tatiana Rose, right, recreates Marilyn’s iconic look.Credit:Getty Images/Courtesy of Tatiana Rose

Tips and Tricks

  • Monroe and her make-up artist used a lot of cream-based products. Setting your face properly with powder will ensure the look lasts.
  • Work with your facial features, not against them. You may need to adjust certain applications to best enhance the look for you.
  • The classic winged liner can be applied to your liking as Monroe’s looks ranged from a soft brown eye to a stronger and sharper black wing. While a cake liner would have been used at the time, modernise the look with a gel liner like MAC’s Blacktrack Longwear gel eyeliner.

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