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Inspired by Literature x 20th Century Book Tag

Taking a page out of Jessica of Getting Cheeky’s book (get it?), I decided to try and translate literature into makeup colors. I won’t be doing anything like Made-Up History, which is a series I made up where I take a work of art and translate it to a makeup look, just a selection of colors I think that make up pieces of literature. Click here for her Inspired by Literature series.

For this first post (of many? Possibly), I picked books that I spoke about on my 20th Century Book Tag Video, which you can watch here:

Without further ado, here are the photos!

1900sWhat Maisie Knew by Henry James
IBL - What Maisie Knew
NARS Eyeshadow Trio in Delphes, NARS Pure Matte Lipstick in Montego Bay

I chose quite soft colors for this particular book cover. I haven’t actually read this yet, but I know that it has a lot to do with innocence.

1910s — Dubliners by James Joyce
IBL - Dubliners
NARS Eyeshadow Duo in Paramaribo, Guerlain Rouge G L’Extrait in Orgueil

Quite a depressing, though realistic portrait of Dublin.

1930sBrave New World by Aldous Huxley
IBL - Brave New World
Urban Decay Naked 2 Palette

One of the earliest dystopian novels, in my mind. It can tend to be pretty scary, since some of the issues Huxley pays attention to are kind of rampant today.

1940sThe Myth of Sisyphus by Albert Camus
IBL - Camus
bareMinerals READY 8.0 in The Cocktail Hour, Le Métier de Beauté Eyeshadow Duo in Brown as a Berry, NARS Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in Bahama

An early philosophic favorite. I was obsessed with this text when we were reading it for school. Camus questions the meaning and point of life, using The Myth of Sisyphus as the context of his arguments and observations.

1950sFranny and Zooey by JD Salinger
IBL - Franny and Zooey
NYX Eye/Eyebrow Pencil in Emerald City, Revlon PhotoReady Kajal in Purple Reign, Le Métier de Beauté Indelible Ink in Artemis, NARS Velvet Matte Lip Pencils in Bahama and Dolce Vita, KIKO EyeTech Look Eyeshadow in 102, Eye of Horus Natural Smokey Eye Pencil, Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder in Ethereal Light

Portraits of two Glass siblings, Franny and Zooey, both of which question the true meaning of faith, religion, and belief from two perspectives and situations. This book made me like J.D. Salinger a lot, and then he died a week later.

1960sCat’s Cradle by Kurt Vonnegut
IBL - Cat's Cradle
Addiction by Ayako eyeshadow in Safari Mode, Le Métier de Beauté Kaleidoscope Eye Kit in Northern Lights, KATE Rouge HD Lipstick in PK-17

My favorite novel by Kurt Vonnegut. It’s an apocalyptic story with intense characters and a slightly skewed picture of the world.

1970sThe Bloody Chamber by Angela Carter
IBL - The Bloody Chamber
BYS Matte Lipstick in Tango, e.l.f. Brightening Eye Color in Ivy (dark green shade only), Make Up Store Microshadow in Touch

A collection of creepy and haunting retellings of famous tales like Beauty and the Beast, Puss in Boots, and Red Riding Hood.

1980sEnder’s Game by Orson Scott Card
IBL - Ender's Game
Addiction by Ayako eyeshadow in Deep Forest, bareMinerals Velvet Green and Satin Mist

One of my favorite sci-fi stories, set in a world where the human race has been preparing for another alien attack. Children seem to be the answer, and we follow the story of Ender, who is exceptionally gifted.

1990sHarry Potter & the Prisoner of Azkaban by JK Rowling
IBL - Prisoner of Azkaban
Shiro Cosmetics Lingered in Twilight, bareMinerals Satin Sterling, Fanny Serrano eyeshadow in Potter Clay

My favorite book from the Harry Potter series, The Prisoner of Azkaban represents a lot of my childhood memories and experiences.

And that’s it for now. I hope you all enjoyed this post, despite it being different than usual. If you’re interested in more book talk, check out my book blog here.


  1. Bravo! I thoroughly enjoyed your refreshing post and reading both What Maisie Knew and Brave New World. You’ve now inspired me to read all the other books you’ve showcased!😉

  2. Gracie says

    OMG ANG GANDAAAA!!! The colors!!! The makeup!!! The books @.@ by the way that’s a really great copy of ender’s game you have!

  3. THIS IS ONE OF MY FAVOURITE THINGS. Inspired by Literature is fantastic!! Really looking forward to checking out Getting Cheeky, and I think I might be doing this in the future, too. I had ideas about doing a “match your nails to the book you’re currently reading” type thing, but this is an awesome overall umbrella. Beauty and books together? Hell to the yes.

  4. Thank you for the mention! I’m happy that inspired by literature resonated with you. I actually just ordered the Bloody Chamber to read for myself. 🙂

  5. Pingback: Inspired by Literature: Austen’s Persuasion | Intermittent Makeup

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