Tag Archives: skin

A Woman in a Feathered Boa, 1920s

Feathered boas go in and out of style.  Searching on the wonderful home economics site Hearth, I found instructions on how to clean them in a housekeeping guide from 1908. You shake them out and then dip them in gasoline! … Continue reading

Posted in 1920s | Tagged , , , | 3 Comments

Mother and Daughter, 1925

Given all the facial similarities, these two are obviously mother and daughter. They even have very similar hairstyles. The photo offers clear evidence of what aging does to facial features. The mother’s cheeks are sagging, the lines around her mouth … Continue reading

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Helena Rubinstein and the Fine Art of Photo Retouching, 1932

How did famous beauties control their image before the era of Photoshop? They had their photographs retouched. Apparently altering negatives to achieve different results is a process as old as photography itself. Because she had made herself into the image … Continue reading

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Your Cosmetic Portrait by Helena Rubinstein, 1935

I’ve been reading a fascinating book on beauty care expert Helena Rubinstein, Beauty is Power by Mason Klein. It is the companion volume to an exhibit of the same name that recently closed at the Jewish Museum in New York, … Continue reading

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“I’m Proud to Admit I’m a Grandmother,” 1947

Most advertisements containing grandmothers refer to their homey, family loving qualities. This is the earliest I’ve seen that praises her as a glamorous figure. It’s worth noting that this stylish grandmother appears over half a year before the birth of … Continue reading

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Lace, 1976

Renowned San Francisco photographer Imogen Cunningham has an answer for what tattoos can come to look like on older bodies. “It looks like lace, doesn’t it?” This remarkable photo comes from Cunningham’s book, After Ninety (University of Washington Press, 1977), … Continue reading

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The Nine Lives of Lee Miller

American-British photographer Lee Miller (1907-1977) had quite a resume.  Here is a short list of her occupations: fashion model, artist’s model, fashion photographer, art photographer, photo journalist, chef, and food writer. She was muse to and collaborator with the artist … Continue reading

Posted in 1930s, 1940s, 1950s, 1960s | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments

Joan Rivers on Aging

Self help books are a guilty pleasure of mine. I enjoy the illusion of another life, easily achieved in just ten simple steps. But Joan Rivers’ 1999 book on aging, Don’t Count the Candles, Just Keep the Fire Lit, simply … Continue reading

Posted in 1990 | Tagged , | 4 Comments

Smooth and Textured: Forty-seven Years of my Skin

Recently I came across a picture that my brother took of me when I was about sixteen. It is obviously an art shot, with the light coming in over my right shoulder. My brother went on to become a professional … Continue reading

Posted in 1960s, 2010s | Tagged , , , | 4 Comments

Textured Skin

When I sew, I seek out textured fabric. I think the puckers and ridges created by different weaving and dyeing techniques make the clothes more interesting and luxurious to wear. Looking at the photos that Doris Ulmann took of older … Continue reading

Posted in 1920s, 1930s, General | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments