1920 face makeup

Historical Beauty;

Max Factor’s House of Makeup store in the heart of the theatre district of Los Angeles in 1917. Some of Max Factor’s early consumer-facing packaging played up the brand’s theatrical and Hollywood beginnings with their drama mask markings. Max Factor was particularly successful at bringing his makeup products and popular Hollywood stars together in a mutually beneficial promotion of the makeup, movies, and actresses. The Problem with Film It wasn’t just the unrefined theatrical greasepaint that made doing makeup for the movies difficult.

A big part of the problem was the fact that early blue-sensitive orthochromatic film stock was insensitive to red, and made the actorsskin appear twice as dark as it really was and blue eyes appear white and turned anything red to black. This meant that regular makeup just didn’t translate on-screen. Panchromatic film, which was sensitive to the entire color spectrum, was an improvement, but due to issues with expense and supply, it didn’t really come into use until after 1926. And while it may have registered a broader range of colors, it still required Max Factor to produce specially tested panchromatic makeup products.

In fact, with the constant development of filmmaking techniques, there was an increasing need for an understanding of colors and innovation in products. Actors and makeup artists relied on Max Factor to develop new textures and colors that would deal with these challengesfrom the different lights that came with black-and-white talkies to the struggle with Technicolor. As veteran Hollywood makeup artist Howard Smit commented in an interview for the Television Academy Foundation’s Archive of American Television, Max Factor himself didn’t have any secrets to share insofar as the doing of the makeup. His secrets were in his manufacturing; he was in the industry to make cosmetics. The connection makeup artists had with the Factor organization was just perfect because we worked with each other; they helped us to perfect the makeup we needed in those early days.
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1920 face makeup

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