When we’re in a rut, classic romantic movies are our pick-me-ups—from 80s classics like “Sixteen Candles” to 90s cult hits like “Romeo + Juliet.” For just a couple of hours, we can forget that we’re sick or heartbroken, and pretend that we’re the ones sitting across a dining room table from Jake Ryan or looking at Leo through an aquarium (who wouldn’t?).
Well, even if you can’t actually trade places with the iconic leading ladies in these movies, you can easily re-create the beauty looks that helped hook them the guy in the end.
To recreate some of the looks from flicks like “Pretty Woman,” “Titanic,” and more, we enlisted the help of Ted Gibson hairstylist Linzee Katzman and Pucker makeup artist Yoli Cotray, who put a slightly modern spin on these memorable looks.
Molly Ringwald in “Sixteen Candles”
Every year, we hope for a birthday that includes a fluffy pink dress, a red Porsche with Jake Ryan in the driver’s seat, and a shared kiss across a birthday cake (all set to the sounds of the Thompson Twins, natch). We’re still waiting. In the meantime, here’s how we recreated Molly Ringwald‘s perfectly flushed cheeks.
Cotray started by using Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturizer ($43, lauramercier.com) to keep the skin nice and dewy. She then dusted the cheeks with Laura Mercier Duo Bronze in Coral Bronze ($32, lauramercier.com), which adds a natural radiance. Next, she used MAC Powder Blush in Sunbasque ($21, maccosmetics.com) to give cheeks their coral color.
Cotray recreated the smoky eyes by pressing MAC Eye Shadow in Bark (sadly, it’s now discontinued!) onto the lids and blending it upward. She then blended a lighter brown shade into the crease. She finished by blending the Bark shadow onto the lower lashes and lining the bottom lash line with NARS Eyeliner Pencil in Kyoto ($23, narscosmetics.com).
The NARS Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in Dolce Vita ($25, narscosmetics.com) gave lips a matte texture.
Katzman selected a triangle section of hair that started at the temples and went back toward the center of the head, clipping it off to the side. She used a natural bristle brush to brush the remaining hair down and collected it at the nape of the neck, lightly spraying it with L’Oréal Elnett Hairspray ($14.99, ulta.com) to smooth flyaways. Then, she started twisting hair into a low ponytail, bringing it up into a French Twist and securing it with bobby pins. She took down the top section of parted hair and lightly back-combed it. She then smoothed it out and started twisting it back until it sat right next to the French Twist, pinning it in place with bobby pins.
Julia Roberts in “Pretty Woman”
It’s not that we dream about being a prostitute, but the idea of having someone give us a gorgeous red dress, a $500,000 “loaner” necklace and a night at the opera is kind of fantastic. Even more memorable than Julia Roberts‘ magical night at the opera with Richard Gere? Her red lipstick and glamorous updo.
Cotray started with a cream shadow, then used Inglot AMC Pure Pigment Eye Shadow 67 ($14, inglotusa.com) on the lids, blending upwards.
The bold lip was created using a mix of NARS Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in Red Square and Dragon Girl ($25 each, narscosmetics.com).
Katzman selected a triangle section of hair that started at the temples and went back toward the center of the head, clipping it off to the side. She sprayed a hairbrush with hairspray before brushing through the hair and pulling it into a low ponytail. She twisted the ponytail and brought it up into a French twist, which she secured with pins. She then took the top section out and separated it into two different sections before curling with an iron. She sprayed with L’Oréal Elnett Hairspray ($14.99, ulta.com) and let the hair hang down the right side of the face.
Kate Winslet in “Titanic”
Tissues are a must when watching this epic romance, but before you get to the sad stuff, there’s that infamous drawing scene, where Leonard DiCaprio sketches Kate Winslet in all her naked glory. Needless to say, every girl wants to get the glow Kate had in that moment.
She used MAC Powder Blush in Loverush (now discontinued) on the lids as well as at the bottom lash line. Cotray then went over the lids with a soft matte brown color and used a darker brown shade in the crease. She used NARS Matte Eyeshadow in Coconut Grove ($25, narscosmetics.com) to line both the top and bottom lashes.
Using a one-inch curling iron, Katzman curled hair near the nape of the neck, moving from section to section—going side to side—until all the hair was in perfect curls. She then sprayed every other section of hair that she curled with hairspray (doing every section would have made the hair too sticky).
Claire Danes in “Romeo + Juliet”
Of course, “Romeo + Juliet” is the ultimate tragic romance, and the 90s cult version of the Shakespearean classic made many a girl want to dye her hair red and start dating Leonardo DiCaprio. This movie is packed with incredible scenes, from the beginning aquarium scene to the lovers’ sad demise, but of course, our favorite look involves Claire Danes wearing angel wings.
To recreate the youthful, glowing skin Claire has in the movie, Cotray used a Pucker brightening moisturizer (not yet out) along with Embryolisse Lait-Crème Concentré ($28, birchbox.com) for extra dewiness. She covered areas of redness with NARS Creamy Radiant Concealer ($29, sephora.com) and pressed Laura Mercier Secret Brightening Powder ($24, lauramercier.com) on top. She dusted NARS Translucent Light Reflective Powder ($35, sephora.com) over the entire face and used NARS The Multiple in Copacabana ($39, narscosmetics.com) on the cheekbones.
Cotray highlighted the brow bones with a concealer two shades lighter than the skin and used MAC Eye Brows ($19, maccosmetics.com) to fill in brows. She used Chanel Quadra Eye Shadow in Spice ($59, chanel.com) and applied the brown color to the lids. NARS Matte Eyeshadow in Coconut Grove ($25, narscosmetics.com) was used to line both the top and bottom lashes.
Cotray blended a very small amount of NARS Satin Lip Pencil in Palais Royal ($25, narscosmetics.com) on the lips for a just-bitten effect.
Katzman created a center part, then gathered hair at the crown and gently backcombed to create a foundation for bobby pins to hold onto. She used a natural bristle brush to smooth over the backcomb to create a natural look. She took a large section from each side (leaving out the front pieces, which would hang down), and twisted the hair sections back, sticking a pin into the twists to lock them into place. Once the twists were secure, she fishtail-braided the ends of the hair, pinning them to the scalp in a halo shape.
Photographer: Jeﬀ Thibodeau
Post Production: Tom Mendes
Hair: Linzee Katzman for Ted Gibson Salon
Makeup: Yoli Cotray for Pucker
Stylist: Faustina Rose
Model: Clare Cirillo for MAJOR Models
Features Director: Sam Lim