These makeup looks from the 80s will jazz up your personal style

Makeup from the 80s
Source: click Americana/ the Zoe report

Nostalgic throwback fashion has been having quite a moment. From all the Y2K fashion including low-rise jeans, rectangular glasses, and now the makeup. We have icons such as Madonna and Iman to thank for some of these makeup from the 80s.

They showed us how to layer on products especially on the cheeks, with bright eyeshadows that birthed dramatic physical looks. You can still go the overdone way from that decade, or better still, put a modern spin to personalize and update their makeup routine.

It will take a hairdo from that era to complement the makeup, but if you’re feeling like having a go at it, these looks are all the inspiration you need to nail the 80’s look.

The powdery foundation shades look

Madonna, the queen of pop, showed us how to rock a slightly bright hue themed makeup. She toned down the powdery look with thick dark brows and a darker shade of blush on the cheeks.

For the lips, deep colours like red or plum will seal the look. She finished off the 80’s beauty with that touch of her signature beauty mark on her upper lips. Now you can safely confirm the Madonna lip piercing inspiration started from this iconic decade.

Lined makeup look from the 80s

Take a cue from singer Grace jones for your lined makeup inspiration from the 80s look. Black brows top a heavy layer of black eyeshadow with an upper purple shade extending into the arch. A full black eyeliner completes the dark eye look.

Lined makeup look by jones
Source: Vogue

Of course, the lined makeup extends to the lips — she wears a dark red lipstick that is lined with dark lip liner. While the dark lined look is going on, let’s not forget the high cheekbone blush that softens the look. So, if you’re going to try this look, find the balance between the dark lining and a softer finished makeup.

Overdone yet chic

Taking a look at the makeup from the 80s you will see how they were able to layer on products without looking overdone. If we were to guess, they had the opinion that no amount of product is too much as long as you can blend and pull the look together. The likes of Cindy Lauper and Christine Brinkley can affirm it.

The overdone makeup

Makeup for that decade can give you all the inspiration for elaborate makeup. From the over-layered eyeshadow, bright hues of blush with a matching lipstick.

A wild look that Cindy pulled off was to use a bright yellow eyeshadow that covered her entire eyelids and extended to the outer eye area. The coloured lashes and full red lips were only fitting for the overdone foundation base.

The Ultimate 80s chic vibe

Pink glossy lips were the thing in the 80s. What’s better than a matching pink glittery eyeshadow to complement the look. They even went as far as adding the signature layered pink blush for the ultimate 80s girl look. Try out an updated version by making the eyeshadow the focus, applying a thin layer of blush, and adding some faux lash extensions.

Glossy pink lip gloss makeup

Glossy lips also pair well with the current dewy face makeup. Add the signature endless blush to make it look like 80s makeup, with a dash of neon eyeshadow and coloured mascara to give it away. To complete the look, tone it down by applying a pastel lip gloss.

Transition into makeup from the 80s

Brushy brows were so in style back then, and they still are right now with the trendy fluffy brows. While they are focal for bright makeup, they were also used to pull off a natural minimalist look.

You can use it as a transition to the makeup from the 80s trend. Give more effort to the look by adding a touch of bright coloured eyeshadow like blue or purple.

Then again you can dip in a little more by copying an iconic makeup from the 80s that Iman rocked which featured a stunning medium coverage look that was the rave at one point.

Maybe it was the full circle eyeliner or the brushed brows. It was just so chic that everyone was copying the makeup. The dark red eyeshadow and metallic red lipstick were the contrasting bright shade the look needed.

It might have been her stunning red dress that drew women to the face. Anyways, this look is one that you can easily copy too.


The makeup from the 80s has a great influence on today’s beauty trends. It proves that some things are here to stay, while the recent makeup seems more defined. It is just the blending game that created the shift. This is so because we still rock the bold brows, bright coloured lipsticks and heavy eyeshadow.

The goal is not to wear the full 80s look but to draw inspiration and incorporate some of their styles into your makeup routine. We could always use something different, try something bold today.

Fanti Tukuwei
I'm a fashion, beauty, and lifestyle enthusiast, and the ultimate curves queen. Here, I share beauty, fashion, and lifestyle tips to teach, inspire, and give confidence to all women.