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Making Faces Paperback – Deluxe Edition, September 2, 1999

4.5 out of 5 stars 636 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

The faces that Kevyn Aucoin has made are stellar and luminous: Cher, Tina Turner, Vanessa Williams, and Julia Roberts are but a few of the stars in Aucoin's galaxy of clientele. More than making do, making up is the art of achieving your own special look, and Aucoin insists that there are no hard and fast rules--except for the obvious ones, such as "Don't put lipstick in your eye."

The first section offers, in his own words, Aucoin's favorite ideas, tricks, and techniques for enhancing, defining, and altering facial features with makeup. You'll learn how to care for your skin, what foundation to use with your skin type, and transformational magic for that central player in the drama of beauty: eyes. Through his gallery of noncelebrity before-and-afters, Aucoin shows clearly how to use his fundamentals to achieve dozens of different looks.

The gorgeous final chapter reads like a list of exotic characters in a play--the Vamp, the Siren, the Diva.... In fact, such celebrities as Isabella Rosselini, Demi Moore, and Nicole Kidman pose as these dramatic, splendidly made-up characters. These sumptuous photographs are accompanied by full-page illustrations listing the "ingredients" required to create these looks as well as simple directions for achieving them. The introduction by the author, at once amusing and endearing ("...trying to conceal the fact that I was a gay, effeminate, hyperactive, adopted child with a serious lisp in southern Louisiana would have been like trying to hide Dolly Parton in a string bikini!"), and Aucoin's commentary throughout, makes Making Faces a unique reference book--beautiful, informative, and personal. --This text refers to the Unbound edition.

About the Author

Kevyn Aucoin's work was seen by millions in fashion shows, music videos, and on the covers of virtually every major magazine. He appeared on countless television shows and was the author of three bestselling books, "The Art of Makeup, Making Faces, and "Face Forward. Kerry Diamond is the beauty director at "Harper's Bazaar and was the beauty editor at "Women's Wear Daily for several years. She lives in New York City. Eric Sakas was Kevyn's confidante and business partner and today runs Kevyn Aucoin Beauty.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 160 pages
  • Publisher: Little, Brown and Company (September 2, 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0316286850
  • ISBN-13: 978-0316286855
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 0.6 x 12.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (636 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #13,691 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
I bought this book skeptically after hearing from a friend how helpful it was in describing techniques. The georgeous photos would have sold it for me anyhow, but Aucoin's 'Making Faces' actually taught me how to do makeup. I've always done the same thing...which was basically go natural or play with makeup till I looked like a clown then scrub it all off. It's a simple approach that is easily accessible. The book makes doing eyebrow shaping look easy...and it not only looks easy- by following a few steps it turns out it IS easy. If you want to learn the basics- buy this book. If you want to do a home makeover- go glamorous, sensual, then fun later on - buy this book. If you want to tune your look a bit- get it! I guess I don't have to go on, but if you are like me and need a bit of instruction and cant afford a makeup artist to be at your beckon call- buy this book. At least borrow it from a friend. It's one of the books you'll consistently turn to for tips and tricks. It's an excellent resource and a whole lot of fun. The photos and styles cover all ages, from young and cute teenage to mature sophisticated and sexy women to a really hot guy in drag (double take is an understatement). Aucoin not only uses "Stars" but also 'real' people (meaning their looks aren't a direct part of their job) in showing the techniques and how they cause such transformations.
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Format: Hardcover
Kevin Acoin's book Making Faces is exquisite! As a makeup artist familiar with Kevin's work, I thought this book was going to be just a book filled with trade secrets and inside tips.Once I opened to the 3rd or 4th page, I realised how wrong I was.Not only did I find information that was useful beyond anything I learned in Beauty school, it was full of probably the most beautiful collection of photographs I have ever seen.It really takes a true genious to transform so many gorgeous women into other gorgeous women who look nothing like them.I really liked how he chose to use traditional movie roles as inspiration for some of the pictures.I think this allows the reader to recreate the role of the inginue or heroine!! There is also a really wonderful lesson on facial bone structure that really helps to understand how contouring and highlighting certain areas is really important to bring out a womans (or in a few cases..a mans)features.I photocopied it and stuck it to my bathroom mirror as a guide for applying eyeshadow. The only thing that I didnt like about the book is that he didn't mention the products used.Some women will find it a little difficult to find liquid eyeshadow and gold fleck dust!! I think had he given the brand names it would be a lot easier to find the products. This book is definitely a must for any makeup artist, cosmetic consumer, and any woman who wants to feel beautiful!
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Format: Paperback
Makeup bible, ultimate how-to, this book remains the Best book I have seen on the subject of working with color, proportion, shading, and highlighting to create a beautiful, symmetrical, gorgeous face. It is thorough and leaves no question unanswered.

The book begins with the basics: anatomy of the face, foundational ingredients (moisturizer, simple tools, foundation types, powders, concealers) and moves on to techniques. There is an Amazing diagram on shading and highlighting on pg 24 that shows an exaggerated version of what goes on beneath the makeup to create the illusion of symmetry and highlight (or fake) high cheekbones, a lovely chinline, and beautiful eyes. It also discusses brows, eyes, lashes, lips, and then moves onto overall styles and looks. The way he explains with the text and shows with a combination of drawings and pictures makes it clear for anyone, whether a professional or beginner. Excellent resource!

The looks themselves are extremely varied from subtle, minimal, and fresh, to smoky, sexy, and very dramatic. He begins with simple ideas on everyday people, but finishes off with celebrities looking like you have never seen them--you seriously have to find their names to figure out who they are, they look so different. These are examples of what different makeup can do, and for the theatre and fashion folks out there, this section provides you with so much inspiration and ideas--it is priceless!

There is something here for every person and every occasion, so even those who don't like looking overly made up can look great. His pictures of friends, family, and of course, celebrities give this book both warmth and glamour, and his clear way of breaking down various techniques make this the most accessible, user-friendly, useful book I have read on this topic. I recommend it to anyone at all.
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Format: Hardcover
If you're serious about applying makeup, this book is for you. Aucoin gives detailed instructions on how to achieve any makeup look from natural to extremely dramatic. He also lets the reader in on the secrets of the stars: you too can look like Audrey Hepburn or Marilyn Monroe, if you follow his instructions.
I was especially pleased to see Aucoin's techniques demonstrated not just on glamorous stars but also on normal people of all ages and sizes and both sexes. He's got a lot of common sense, too; he puts only minimal makeup on his teenage models (they still look like teenagers after he's done -- what a concept!) and he doesn't think much of child beauty pageants.
The book isn't perfect, though. Aucoin advocates putting eyeliner inside the lash line. Most eye doctors will tell you that's a bad idea, and so will most of us who lived through the first time this idea became popular. Pinkeye, anyone?
He also doesn't put much emphasis on choosing the right colours for the reader's complexion. He advocates complete freedom, which of course is fine for someone experienced with choosing their makeup colours but doesn't help the neophyte who needs advice.
But those are pretty minor complaints. This book is a fantastic tool for the person with some experience in applying cosmetics. I recommend it highly.
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