Playful pin curls, a voluptuous body, and pale skin were once trademarks of beauty. Today, flowing long hair, an ample derriere, and plump, pouty lips are symbols of attractiveness. Of course, in every generation there are exceptions to the standards of beauty. There are also starlets from today that mimic many of the prized body and facial features from eras long ago, proving that beauty is at once universal, and resistant to time.
Beauty of Yesterday: Greta Garbo
This Swedish film actress who was nominated for multiple Academy Awards was known for her trademark accessory: hats. The hats added to the mystery and allure of her magnetism. Reddish brown, slightly curled hair along with highly arched, rounded eyebrows and pale, flawless skin were her calling cards. She preferred to wear her thinner lips in a matte shade and keep her eye makeup subtle and sophisticated.
Modern Counterpart: Diane Kruger
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Beauty of Yesterday: Jean Harlow
Many think that Marilyn Monroe was the iconic blonde from the early 1900s but in fact, Jean Harlow was known as the “blonde Bombshell” and the “Platinum Blonde.” This curly coiffed and racy actress was known for making sexual statements and writing explicit material. She had dramatic penciled-in eyebrows, snow white bleached hair and full rounded hips.
Modern Counterpart: Christina Aguilera
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Beauty of Yesterday: Elizabeth Taylor
Arguably one of the most striking women ever found on film, Elizabeth Taylor had the perfect doll-like features: slim nose, big blue eyes and full dramatic eyebrows. Taylor’s body was perfectly proportional: full bust, slim waist and thin arms and legs. Known for her shiny raven mane and almond shaped eyes, this Cleopatra star was married eight times (which goes to show, even beautiful people aren’t always lucky in love).
Modern Counterpart: Angelina Jolie
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Beauty of Yesterday: Audrey Hepurn
This slim shaped British ballerina had tiny, delicate features along with bushy bangs and full fuzzy eyebrows. She gained notoriety for her roles in Breakfast at Tiffany’s, Roman Holiday and Sabrina. Doe-eyed with full cheeks and cutesy expressions, Hepburn remains one of the most imitated icons in history.
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Modern Counterpart: Natalie Portman
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Beauty of Today: Halle Berry
A natural beauty, Halle frequently wears her hair in cropped, shaggy styles. She’s known for her beautiful cocoa colored skin, shiny wide-set brown eyes, and naturally flushed pink cheeks. Halle’s body is strong—muscular arms and legs complement a taut, toned midsection. She’s rarely seen in layers of makeup and lets her flawless skin and body do the talking.
Classic Counterpart: Dorothy Dandridge
Beauty of Today: Kate Middleton
Known for shiny, chocolate-brown locks and fit, sporty body, this British beauty has transformed from average tomboy into regal Royal Highness. Kate Middleton defies the usual British stereotype of bad teeth and shows off her pearly whites at many engagements and events throughout the UK. Furthermore, she compliments are button nose and cherubic cheeks with minimal makeup and often styles herself from head-to-toe. She’s the ultimate oxymoron: a low-maintenance princess.
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Modern Counterpart: Katie Holmes
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Beauty of Today: Kim Kardashian
Both known for their backsides, these two beauty icons are similar in many ways. Both love the limelight, long, flowing manes, and fitted clothing. Each embraces their natural curves and aren’t afraid of showing off butts and boobs. In addition, both love playing dress-up and are rarely seen without heavy eye makeup, including lots of eyeliner and falsies, as well as hair extensions, heavy coverage foundation, and lots of shimmer and spray tan on their skin. Not ones to subscribe to a natural philosophy, these two women love celebrating their feminine flair.
Classic Counterpart: Sophia Loren
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