When we think of glamour, one of the many thoughts that come to mind are the golden days of Hollywood: where actresses like Rita Hayworth and Ginger Rogers ruled the screens. We also think of women like Grace Kelly and Audrey Hepburn, who had an easy sophistication everyone admired. These are the women of “Old Hollywood Glam”
I’ve written about recreating Audrey Hepburns style and makeup before, but never a overarching theme of incorporating “Old Hollywood Glamour” into your everyday look.
It’s not about dressing retro or vintage. It’s not about acting a certain way – but incorporating a few elements that make people go “ah-hah, she’s very glamorous”.
Follow these next steps to instantly add some old Hollywood glamour to your everyday look (yes, even grocery shopping)
1. Know Your Shapes and Styles
I’ve talked about this many times on The Petite Bijou, knowing which dress shapes fit you best will help you look your best, For me, these are A line dresses, for others, it’s Sheath, Try on different clothing until you find your own personal style. If it’s not dresses, know where to layer appropriately, Perhaps you look more put together with a blazer or a longer cardigan. Perhaps a crop jacket is best suited for you. Try things on and get feedback from people around you on what styles and shapes suit you best.
I know an off the shoulder dress works well for me, so I try to wear those during the summer (have to take advantage of the warm weather!). This high low off the shoulder dress was purchased at Windsor, but you can find plenty of pretty dresses in your style preference on sites like Nordstrom and Revolve to name a few..
Glamour is 90% feeling confident in the things you wear and do, 10% of what you actually look like.
2. Oversized Sunglasses Create Mystery
Whose behind those oversized sunglasses? Only a few lucky ones will know! Adding a pair of oversized sunglasses to your outfit create an illusion of mystery. Imagine yourself an Old Hollywood starlett hiding away from the paparazzi as she goes to her favorite coffee shop. I’m wearing Celine Baby Audrey’s (iconic if you can find them) and the closest pair that match the style are these.
However, everyone has oversized sunglasses these days, don’t they? So pick something unique – like cat shaped sunglasses (which are very old Hollywood glamorous)
MY FAVORITE OLD HOLLYWOOD STYLE SUNGLASSES
3. Add Red Lipstick
Why did so many old Hollywood stars wear red lipstick? Because at the time, it was the most used color (and pretty much the only color you could use – made from red beetles). So red lipstick became iconic and synonymous with old Hollywood glamour. Any red lipstick will do as it all depends on your preference. You can go for a darker purplish red, an orange red, a cherry red – the different red shades are endless!
My personal favorite red lipstick color (featured in these photos) is the liquid matte lipstick from Anastasia Beverly Hills in shade American Doll. It goes on quite smoothly and lasts quite a while. Do be careful to blot thoroughly afterwards and consider adding a translucent powder on top of it to set it in place.
A good way to do this is to take a tissue (like one for blowing noses) and separate it in half so you have a very thin layer of tissue. Press that tissue piece gently upon your lips, being careful not to move it or spread the lipstick. Then take a translucent powder on a large face brush and sweep translucent powder across the napkin (while it’s still pressed to your lips). Remove the napkin and blot once more and you’re all set – literally.
If you need to, set again with this setting spray.
THE PERFECT RED LIP
4. Heels For Days
A good pair of black heels will add instant glamour to your look. I/m wearing the Jordynn Pump from one of my favorite brands that is really in my budget for under $100. Pair them with jeans, skirts, or pants for an elevated everyday look. If you’re going for a more old Hollywood glamour situation, dresses are the best way to style them! I like to wear black heels because they are universally pretty in any situation or outfit. If you want a more retro feel, opt in for a kitten heel (I find them the most comfortable).
CUTE HEELS TO OWN
5. BE, don’t just “Do”
As Marilyn Monroe puts it, glamour is all about femininity and it’s not something you can just “buy”. Buying a LV purse won’t make you glamorous. Nor will plane hopping to Palm Springs for that “insta” worthy picture next to the pool. Glamour cannot be bought.
It is learned by mannerisms and the way you style a feminine look. Follow these simple steps above to create mystery and romance in your look. It really is all about putting these elements together and most importantly: acting and sounding the part.
One of the best ways to BE more old Hollywood glam is by watching the films of the actresses you admire from that era. And before you say “but it’s just acting”, hear me out.
The characters they portray are often the symbols of elegance we remember – it’s not just the actresses, it’s the characters. Think of Audrey Hepburn’s Sabrina character: she grows into an elegant woman and acts like it. I’m not saying to copy them, but observe them.
Observe how they walk, speak, sit, eat, etc. It’s calculated, elegant, and reflects an ideal. You can take some of those mannerisms into your outfit!
Notice the way they carry their purses, wear their hats, put on makeup. You can do the same if you wish.
I talk more about feeling elegant here, but a good tip is making sure your posture speaks volumes about your elegance. Walk with your head held high, not looking down all the time, and look at people when they talk to you. I promise you’ll feel instantly glamours. And like I previously mentioned, feeling the part is 90% of being the part!
If you need.a confidence boost, I interviewed Victoria Secret Angel Martha Hunt on being elegant. Here’s what she had to say…
What is your favorite way to add old Hollywood glamour to your look? Leave a comment below and let me know!