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How Makeup Videos Would Look If YouTube Existed In The Early 1900s

Watch makeup tutorials from the 1930s, 1940s, and 1950s!
PHOTO: YouTube/British Pathé

Early this month, Vintage et Industrial published a vintage makeup video on their Facebook page and it immediately went viral—12 million views and counting! The video is set in 1958 and shows a beautician mixing powders of different shades on a table. A young lady in blue eagerly watches as the beautician mixes more shades to match the young girl’s natural complexion.

When she gets the right mixture shade, the beautician proceeds to scoop the powder into what looks like an espresso machine. It presses the loose powder using what the male narrator calls a “compact,” which is capable of exerting 2 tons of pressure.

After the beautician is done—voila!—she pulls the lever to reveal the pressed powder, which she carefully places in a mirror compact and hands it to the happy young lady. Watch it here:

If you listen carefully, the male narrator reveals, “At the end of the 17th century, an act was passed whereby a man was entitled to divorce his wife if she wore cosmetics. The act also applied to false teeth, false hair, and stays, because they were akin to witchcraft.” Yikes!

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We did a little research and found out that this video was originally published on YouTube back in 2014 by British Pathé, an archive of classic movies, documentaries, and interviews. According to them, the beauty specialist in pink is Mary Sanders, while the fashion model in blue is Isabelle Babianska. 

But wait, there’s more! When we looked at the comments section, someone named Debz O’Doherty said, “The beautiful lady in the blue dress… is my grandmother who I miss every day, so it is nice to know that I can go to YouTube anytime I want to and see her once more. Thank you.” Aww!

Now our pressing questions are: Can we turn our old espresso machine into a makeup maker? If someone comes up with a millennial version of this machine and sets up a shop, will you fall in line to get your own customized face powder? Can we just sit there all day and therapeutically watch someone mix different shades of powder with a spatula?

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Recommended Videos

If you want to watch more of these vintage makeup videos, CGs, then scroll below. We promise it’s addicting.

Here’s a makeup tutorial from 1938:

A professional male makeup artist from 1944 shows us how to do on-fleek brows:

How about this beauty spa from 1947:

Lastly, check out this celebrity MUA giving three young girls a makeover in 1939:

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