So you love to go to burlesque shows around town and can’t get enough of the vintage pinup art by Gil Elvgren. You’re into the styles and think, “but how can I incorporate it into my everyday look?” Well if you’re like me, sometimes you just need a few ideas to get started, and then it all starts flowing. Here are a few ideas to get pinup and burlesque outfits into your daily wardrobe.
Let’s start with Pinup
• Dress up any outfit with the quintessential pinup accessory: big, beautiful flowers. You can wear a large silk flower in your hair, on a brooch pinned at your shoulder, or on a ribbon around your wrist.
• Paint your toenails red and don some cute peep-toe heels or wedges with your skinny jeans or dresses. Don't forget your red lipstick!
• Wear a petticoat underneath a halter dress to give you that 1950s look. It will make your skirt more full, with adorable ruffles peeking out under the hem. Super fun if you're going dancing!
• For a casual Pinup outfit, try a colorful bandana tied around your head, with some great pinup bangs, and a retro inspired outfit.
Now how about Burlesque?
• Put a feather fascinator in your hair - it can be just a flourish with a single small feather or two, or it can be big, bold and elaborate with long feathers and lots of jewels, or even a mini top hat!
• Create a flirty little outfit with a bustier or corset top, short shorts, and flashy lace or patterned fishnet tights.
• Wear sexy lingerie under a sheer blouse for a tantalizing yet classy look. You can make it more sophisticated by keeping it all black and pairing it with a classic pencil skirt, or more casual and contemporary by incorporating more colorful pieces and a mini skirt or jeans.
• Let your garters and thigh high stockings peek out from underneath a short skirt to make a great burlesque look that isn’t over the top.
Pinup and burlesque outfits are very versatile and just so much fun because it’s all about embellishments and lingerie. It’s really easy to pick a few accessories or go bold with the right lingerie or hosiery to create a memorable style. I hope you try out a few of these ideas. Most of all, have fun with it!
A big part of a burlesque or pinup look is the makeup. I thought that I would show you a few tutorials of both styles, so you can see the similarities and diffferences up close.
Pinup makeup and burlesque makeup are really two distinct styles. Pinup is a more specific 1950s look, whereas burlesque is less era specific and more showy. In fact I would venture to say that burlesque makeup is a bit harder to do than pinup, but after watching these videos, I’m sure that you will be able to pull off both looks. If you’re like me, you'll find the transition from girl next door to bombshell beauty to be pretty breathtaking.
First, let’s take a look at a couple of burlesque makeup tutorials. One is a professional production in high-def with no dialog, but set to cool music. The model is an adorable Japanese girl who demonstrates the process and does the application on herself. It’s amazing how effortless she makes it look, and I have to admit, I’ve watched it several times now. She has many other great makeup tutorials and I recommend you check them all out.
With the right makeup, all you need to complete the perfect burlesque look is the perfect burlesque outfit!
The other burlesque makeup tutorial I’ve included is more homemade, but just as useful to get that burlesque look. The girl in this video is copying the now famous Christina Aguilera look from the movie "Burlesque." She talks her way through it, creating the look in front of the camera as she goes. She’s really great at explaining how the makeup is applied, and then works through each step on herself.
Remember too, that a burlesque outfit is all about the accessories.
Pinup makeup is much more straightforward and it’s really just a popular makeup style from the 1950’s. Both of these tutorials are done by talented, regular girls, but these girls really know their stuff. They both explain the different aspects of the look; the foundation, base skin tone, getting the eyes just right, the lips and of course the beauty mark. Watch and be amazed!
Read our post about the perfect pinup hair, and if you’re having a pinup photoshoot, we have all of the classic styles of hosiery to go with your pinup outfit.
I hope you find these pinup and burlesque makeup tutorials helpful and exciting. I've definitely learned a ton and can’t wait to try the pinup look myself. If you have questions about any of these makeup styles, subscribe to these girls’ YouTube channels. They’re usually very happy to answer questions and help you find success with your makeup looks. Also, our friend and local burlesque performer, Ginger Snaps, from Black Widow Burlesque is a professional makeup artist. Check out some of her incredible makeup work on Facebook at Blood and Glitter Makeup.
Here's some eye candy & pinup inspiration I've gathered for you from the fashion and entertainment worlds. This post was inspired by a thread on Pinup Looks in Modern Pop Culture in the PinupLifestyle forum - a great resource for all things pinup!
Mary Louise Parker in an ad from season 7 of the Showtime series Weeds
Gwen Stefani, contemporary icon of pinup style & the Queen of Victory Rolls
Beyonce sports a pinup look in her "Video Phone" video, 2009
Katy Perry strikes a pinup pose for the cover of her 2008 album, One of the Boys
Christina Aguilera all dolled up for her 2006 Rolling Stone shoot
A Marilyn Monroe-esque Scarlett Johansson for Dolce & Gabbana, 2009
and last but certainly not least,
Brandy looking absolutely gorgeous in Kontrol magazine earlier this year
What are some of your favorite celebrity pinup-inspired looks?
Are you crafty? Even just a little bit? If so, you can create your own stunning pair of pumps covered in glitter or a lovely retro fabric print. Both of these shoe makeover ideas are made possible with a magical product called Mod Podge, and I found them on the super fun Mod Podge Rocks blog.
The first idea is a retro-fabulous shoe makeover that would be perfect for creating the pinup look of your dreams! These fabric-covered beauties are the genius work of Dave's wife. How cute are these shoes?!! She's put together a very detailed fabric-covered shoe tutorial for ya.
Inspiring, no? Those prints are so adorable. But a more dramatic, glam look is more your style, you say?
Been eyeing all of the designer pumps covered in a scrumptious coat of glitter that are everywhere lately? Like these schmancy $595 Christian Louboutin pumps, perhaps? You can make your own version for much, much less if you aren't afraid to get your hands dirty.
Clever Suzannah from Adventures in Dressmaking will show you how. She's got a great glitter pump tutorial on her blog explaining how she replicated the Louboutin look for about $10. Pretty nifty, eh?
Oh, my! Have you seen the latest eye candy from GQ magazine? Alison Brie and Gillian Jacobs, those hilarious AND gorgeous gals from Community, got all dolled up in classy pin-up looks for a photo shoot for GQ's August 2011 issue.
There's even a behind-the-scenes video teaser for GQ's iPod app. Cute and campy fun! Watch the video here:
What do you think? Should these Community stars consider a new career in pin-up modeling?