6 jan. 2016

Book Review: Dita Von Teese - Your Beauty Mark

A little somethin' somethin' different today! I have never done a book review in my life, so please bear with me and feel free to give constructive criticism!

As I mentioned in my corset post, Dita Von Teese is my newfound idol. What drew me the most to her is her style (before I found out she is a very interesting and intelligent person as well). The mix of 50's, 40's, 20's and whatever other era is so fascinating to me and she seems to be the modern personification of it. I'm quite obsessed with that period - stylewise, the political issues like segregation are less admirable - and you can bet your bottom dollar that when the time comes that I can no longer get away with crazy styles, I will settle down on the pin up style forgood.

Other than the clothes, the 50's  makeup is also a thing that never fails to captivate me. When I don't know what to do with my makeup, I always fall back on the classic winged eyeliner with red lipstick and matte skin. It's probably my favourite look of all time. So when Dita came out with a book that is all about her beauty secrets, I did not know how fast I had to do damage my bankaccount and buy Your Beauty Mark.

The 'real' cover (what is this called?)! I kinda prefer this one actually
The book is 400 pages, which is HUGE for a makeup book. But beware, this is not your average 'this is blush and this is how you apply it'-book. No no, my friend!
The book is divided in multiple chapters, of which most cater to cosmetics. In each chapter she discusses the history of the product/technique (very interesting!), her own anecdotes from her own experiences in relation to the product, what make up artists and other authorities have to say about it, how the movie stars from Old Hollywood used it, and finally, her practical tips.

The practical part
Eyebrow chapter: old movie star eyebrows!
I really appreciate that it is a lot theory and little practise, because let's face it: I did not buy this to learn about make up. Not to blow my own horn, but I was already aware of 99% of the practical information about the make up she discusses, and if you are a beauty fanatic like I am, you will probably already know it too. But that is okay: even though some things aren't new to me, there's still a LOT of interesting information in here and the little stories that pop up are just a delight to read. I'm sincerely enjoying every page of it.

Other than that, Dita is a stunning model, so the pictures in the book are simply breathtaking.

While this book seems full of makeup do's and don'ts, it shines through that the key message is that you should to whatever you want when it comes to your style - just like Dita did, despite all the bullying she got for it. She lets some of her pioneer-friends talk a bit here and there: like the drag queen Raja or photographer Ali Mahdavi who lost all of his hair but made it into his trademark. It's all about empowerment: do what makes you feel good (and sexy), like she uses the classic look and corsets to empower herself.

Another aspect that I love about her philosophy is that she make a plea for artificial beauty. She finds beauty in man-made creations: just look at the Haussmann streets in Paris (that uniform, classic style of houses) in. I think this is very refreshing: we live in a society where you have to be naturally beautiful and wearing a lot of makeup is looked down upon, but she turns it around. She likes the transformation of glamour that you can create yourself and I really agree. While I still believe in natural beauty, I think there is no shame in getting beauty from outer sources, as long as it empoweres you and it makes you feel good.

All in all, I can recommend this book for everyone that either has an interest in beauty, the classic pin up style or in Dita von Teese, or all of the above. Even when you think you know everything about beauty, this book still will be a pleasure to read. I enjoy it a lot. It is very nicely written, too, and the pictures are gorgeous.

It is rather pricey: I have found it for around €40-50 and inside of my book it says $50, but! I found my copy on here on, where I could get it for €25 with free shipping! Not sponsored, I promise, but it was a great deal as the book is in really nice condition even though it is not secondhand (the binding is a tiny bit off though, but that's no issue at all, it doesn't fall apart or anything!). Delivery was fine too, so I really recommend using that site!
EDIT: I see now that the price has gone up a little to €33, but still way cheaper than in normal bookstores!

Are you interested in this book?

All opinions are my own, obviously. Bookdepositry did not sponsor me in any kind, they probably don't know I exist so yeah.